The Dark Maiden accepted, seeing an opportunity to finally end the torment that Lolth had been inflicting on the drow for millennia and to set her people free, and put herself on the line for them. This plan didn't go well: Sehanine Moonbow had in fact managed to free herself, and intervened in time to save Corellon (together with Aerdrie Faenya and Hanali Celanil, in the form of the triune goddess Angharradh) and free Eilistraee from guilt. Eilistraee's allies were the elven gods of the Seldarine, as well as Mystra, Selûne, Lurue, Mielikki, Haela Brightaxe, Callarduran Smoothhands, and the other good deities of the Underdark races. [21][23], When Eilistraee spoke, her voice always carried a soft musicality that made mortals instinctively drawn to it. Faithfuls disrobe and start dancing, seeking their goddess' blessing. That said, despite those feelings, not many drow could find the strength and resources to make the final step and leave their past behind to cleave to Eilistraee on their own. She appeared to mortals at least once during the Time of Troubles. Eilistraee fought her melancholy by striving to bring hope and joy where there was sorrow, so that no moment was lost to gloom, and to make life flourish wherever she went. (TSR, Inc), Neverwinter Nights: Hordes of the Underdark, "Candlekeep Forum - Questions for Ed Greenwood (2006)", "Candlekeep Forum - Questions for Ed Greenwood (2015)", "The 13 Strangest Deities in Dungeons & Dragons", Dungeon Master Option: High-Level Campaigns, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Eilistraee&oldid=968510884, Articles using Infobox character with multiple unlabeled fields, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, The Dark Maiden, The Dark Dancer, Lady of the Dance, Lady Silverhair, Moon Maiden, Dancing Goddess, Dark Lady, The Masked Lady(, Song, beauty, dance, swordwork, hunting, moonlight, This page was last edited on 19 July 2020, at 20:57. Pass this learning on whenever possible and use it to bring joy to friends and strangers alike. No mortal actually witnessed the battle that ensued, so what happened remained largely unknown. Even though she was cleared from any guilt, Eilistraee chose to share her mother's exile, because she knew that the drow would need her light and help in the dark times to come. [1] Eilistraeeans perform missions underground, looking for those dark elves who are in need of their help and that can be brought on the surface (mostly slaves, commoners, fallen and hunted nobles or drow who are generally unsatisfied with the life that Lolth imposes them), bringing them the Message of Eilistraee. Post-Sundering, after Flamerule of 1489 DR,[11] Eilistraee is alive again[8][9][11] and she is one of the deities with whom the returned Mystra is currently sharing the Weave (as revealed in Ed Greenwood's novel Spellstorm). [1] The Dark Maiden is infuriated by the evil and corruption of both Lolth and Ghaunadaur. In the Forgotten Realms, Eilistraee, like all deities, has a definite set of teachings for her followers. Her worshipers were figures of myth and superstition and were targets of prejudice and wild mistruths. The commonly accepted version of the story or myth of how Eilistraee came to her role in the drow pantheon runs as follows. It is held whenever Eilistraee warns her followers of the presence of a peril/dangerous creature in the area (through the sound of her horn), in order to prevent it from hurting travelers or the inhabitants of nearby settlements. [4][21][25][38], After the elven lord regained consciousness and the truth was made clear, he had to take the painful decision to banish all the dark elven deities for their roles in the war against the Seldarine. [9], After the Second Sundering, which saw Eilistraee's return (circa the 1480s DR),[13] the planes were rearranged under the Great Wheel cosmology once again. Favored monsters [1], Her enemies are the drow gods of the Dark Seldarine—namely Kiaransalee, Ghaunadaur, her nephew Selvetarm and especially her own mother Lolth. [4] When the right time came, she also personally accompanied her followers who didn't die in battle to their afterlife in a moving celebration known as the Last Dance. If the ritual is successful, the sword will gleam with silvery light, and for three months it won't rust and will be able to hit creatures that can only be wounded by magic.[1]. Priestesses usually tried to find an alcove or passage where they could be alone to make a Flame Song. [1][4], The Darksong Knights are an elite order of Eilistraeen crusaders, mostly active in the Southern Faerûn, beneath the lands of ancient Ilythiir. [9] It lasted for about a century, until the Second Sundering (circa 1480s DR), when Eilistraee returned to life and to her followers. [1] Eilistraee doesn't test her followers, as the challenges of life are enough of a test themselves. In the Forgotten Realms campaign setting, Eilistraee was born the daughter of Corellon Larethian, head of the elven gods, and Araushnee the Weaver (who later took the name of Lolth), a minor elven goddess. Faith was more potent here than in the rest of Arvandor, and all followers of the other drow gods of the Dark Seldarine suffered minor impediments. In fact, it is not unusual for them to choose to spare a stricken worshiper of Eilistraee if they think that no priestess of Lolth is watching, or to fail to pass on to other drow something they might have seen of their activities, or to stop to watch a dance of Eilistraee worshipers rather than disrupting it. Their main duty is to encourage the drow to return to the surface world, reaching to them whether they are fugitives, raiders or inhabitants of the Underdark. [1], The Sword Dance is a ritual held when a new sword is forged or acquired by a worshipper of Eilistraee, in order to ask her blessing on the blade. [4] An example is Karsel'lyn Lylyl-Lytherraias, former agent of Queen Amlaruil Moonflower and ambassador of the Eilistraeen Dark Elves on the elven island of Evermeet, who is trying to gain her people a place in the land that is supposed to be a safe haven for all elven people. Meanwhile, Eilistraee sought to recover the lost Crescent Blade; to that purpose, Cavatina Xarann, a Darksong Knight serving the Dark Dancer, went on a mission into the Demonweb Pits, where the sword was seen last. Worshiperalignments [4] All her worshipers were typically of a good nature. Power Level Ed Greenwood, the creator of Eilistraee and the Forgotten Realms, meant her to take the role of a nurturing and protecting mother-goddess for the whole drow race. The Dark Maiden sang her call to all dark elves—from the highest matron mother to the lowest male slave—sending them dreams or visions, showing them a different, better life, and the beauty of the world (especially when they were close to the surface). Spiteful Lolth did this to prevent her daughter gaining an ally among the Dark Seldarine. Eilistraee's places of worship are chosen mostly like elves choose spots to dedicate to the Seldarine: followers of Eilistraee use natural places that need little modification and tend to live in harmony with their surroundings, leaving few traces of their passage, with only few exceptions (like the drow of the Promeande of the Dark Maiden). [speculation], Eilistraee took the role of a nurturing and protecting mother-goddess for the whole drow race, working to lead them out of the Underdark and back to the surface world, in the great forests they'd left behind long before. However, it had also taught her to search for and nurture beauty everywhere, even in places like the Underdark, where it didn't seem to belong. Possessions: Silver Holy Symbol (Eilistraee), +2 Elven Chainmail of Nimbleness, +3 Holy Keen Longsword, Belt of Giant Strength +6, Boots of Elvenkind, Gloves of Dexterity +6, Periapt of Wisdom +6, Piwafwi of Charisma +6, Ring of Defense +5, Ring of Evasion, various stuffed toys and dolls, other possessions unknown. Eilistraee is surprisingly close to the human goddess of magic Mystra, through Qilue Veladorn, seventh of the Seven Sisters, who serves both goddesses as Chosen of Mystra and as Chosen of Eilistraee. [1], The holy symbols of the faith vary, and include a silver sword pendant the size of a hand, a silver bastard sword outlined against a silver moon with silvery filaments, and a nude long-haired female drow dancing with a silver sword in front of a full moon. This also involves the activities described in the section about Eilistraee's Teachings, like lending their own sword, helping hands, cures and food to assist people of any race in need, both to gain their acceptance (dispelling fears and prejudices about Eilistraee's goal) and because the priestesses of the Dark Maiden believe that it is the right thing to do. [22] Many of them carry tiny swords to give out to drow in the Underdark, that serve as keys for safe passage to temples, or as identification tokens. [8], For example, Eilistraee has appeared personally, dancing in the moonlight, near the walls of Waterdeep, witnessed by the inhabitants of the city. [18], On Nightal 20 of the 1375 DR, Cavatina killed the demigod Selvetarm (with the help of the Lady Penitent), using the Crescent Blade that she had recovered almost intact. Rare is the individual—dark elf or not—who appreciates that Eilistraee is forging her own path, one that welcomes beings of all races who revel in life and the free form expression of all that entails. [4] She was also an excellent crafter and weaponsmith, and could freely create almost any magical item pertaining to beauty, music, moonlight, hunting, or swordwork.[15]. At times, she could also appear during celebrations dedicated to her, leaping inside the flames of bonfires, or manifest herself by night, cloaked and cowled and with her radiance dimmed, to travelers in the woodlands, usually to test their kindness. It combined the powers of the boots of elvenkind, boots of varied tracks, and boots of the north. [31] The Promenade of the Dark Maiden is another example of this, founded because of Eilistraee's direct request to Qilué Veladorn. They would also take care of broken musical instruments, or craft new ones. Avatar [9][note 7] After that, the souls of the newly transformed dark elves among the faithful of Eilistraee were allowed by Corellon Larethian to enter Arvandor (even though Eilistraee's realm, which continued existing,[9] had already been moved to Arvandor almost a decade before, alongside the souls of her followers within it). The deities of the Dark Seldarine: Vhaeraun, Kiaransalee, Lolth, Selvetarm, Ghaunadaur, and Eilistraee. To this end, she expects her faithful to be skilled at swordplay, both as a form of martial art promoting centering of mind and body, and so that when they do enter battle, their foes … Her art had the power to elicit intense emotions in her allies and foes alike (to the point of sometimes leaving them stunned),[4] or to inspire courage, dispel uncertainty and hopelessness, and enhance her allies' focus. Champions of Valor. [26], During the 1360s DR, Eilistraee took to heart the young drow Liriel Baenre and her travels on the surface. 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