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T O P I C    R E V I E W
Wesley Posted - 06 Feb 2005 : 05:08:42
I have been looking - for some time now- for a place called the Cantlow Library. It is mentioned in "Magic of Feyrun."
If no one knows where it is at perhaps you can help me find it. I asked Ed Greenwood here it was and he told me this. "I can't tell you where it is if I did I would have to kill you." He then said that he could give me hints to where it is. He told me that it is in the same spot it always was, but the name has changed and it is now part of a larger collection. He told me I might find someone who had the answer here. Please help me it has been driving me nuts. Enough to find Ed Greenwood at Gencon, then stand in line to ask about it. Thanks for the help
25   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
cpthero2 Posted - 12 Oct 2021 : 07:41:26
Learned Scribe Returnip,

I did actually email Ms. Kestrel, and didn't hear back. Alas, we have only our work here to decide from! :)

Best regards,




Returnip Posted - 18 Dec 2020 : 11:14:45
quote:
Originally posted by ElfBane

quote:
Originally posted by Returnip

quote:
Originally posted by ElfBane

Move Cantlow to the Feywild. Just dream up a way it happened.



That's too easy.



But you're throwing away the FRs most useful tool!! With near-countless gods and a REALLY convenient Feywild you have the always-ready Deus Ex Machina that lets you make anything you want... Happen! I mean just look at what you can do... don't like a situation or you've painted yourself into a corner,,, just throw a god or a Fey at it, and your problems solved.



I know I can make things up. I'm just interested in what the intent of the authors were.

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Returnip


The Lady's College was established in 821 DR, presumably under the same name. So unless there's a source that says it was established under a different name that was later changed, that doesn't fit the bill either.

The Vault of the Sages was built on the northbank in 900 DR and moved to the southbank in 1247 DR. While it's been in the same spot for more than 35 years, I find no evidence of it having changed names.




I'd put my money on either of these... Remember, it doesn't have to be the newer institution that changed its name -- the library's name could have changed after the newer institution was built around it, or after the library was incorporated into that institution.



My bets are on the Map House or the Vault of Sages. Those two are the ones that fit the bill the most.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 17 Dec 2020 : 13:41:12
quote:
Originally posted by Returnip


The Lady's College was established in 821 DR, presumably under the same name. So unless there's a source that says it was established under a different name that was later changed, that doesn't fit the bill either.

The Vault of the Sages was built on the northbank in 900 DR and moved to the southbank in 1247 DR. While it's been in the same spot for more than 35 years, I find no evidence of it having changed names.




I'd put my money on either of these... Remember, it doesn't have to be the newer institution that changed its name -- the library's name could have changed after the newer institution was built around it, or after the library was incorporated into that institution.
ElfBane Posted - 17 Dec 2020 : 11:16:09
quote:
Originally posted by Returnip

quote:
Originally posted by ElfBane

Move Cantlow to the Feywild. Just dream up a way it happened.



That's too easy.



But you're throwing away the FRs most useful tool!! With near-countless gods and a REALLY convenient Feywild you have the always-ready Deus Ex Machina that lets you make anything you want... Happen! I mean just look at what you can do... don't like a situation or you've painted yourself into a corner,,, just throw a god or a Fey at it, and your problems solved.
cpthero2 Posted - 17 Dec 2020 : 07:14:41
Learned Scribe Returnip,

Agreed! I love trying to figure this kind of material out. :)

Best regards,





Returnip Posted - 16 Dec 2020 : 23:49:00
quote:
Originally posted by ElfBane

Move Cantlow to the Feywild. Just dream up a way it happened.



That's too easy.
ElfBane Posted - 15 Dec 2020 : 22:45:01
Move Cantlow to the Feywild. Just dream up a way it happened.
Returnip Posted - 15 Dec 2020 : 19:33:42
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

Guys, there is no correct answer to this. If the lore exists - itís a big if, in my book - itís disappeared now in wake of 3E and departed game designers.

ó George Krashos



Yeah, we're about fifteen years too late. I bet Gwendoly F.M. Kestrel knows though.
cpthero2 Posted - 15 Dec 2020 : 15:11:07
Master Krashos,

You of course are quite likely correct. However, where is the fun in that? All of this roguish sleuthing around, trying to glean much from so little. It's the game of sages. ;)

Best regards,





George Krashos Posted - 15 Dec 2020 : 08:53:31
Guys, there is no correct answer to this. If the lore exists - itís a big if, in my book - itís disappeared now in wake of 3E and departed game designers.

ó George Krashos
Returnip Posted - 15 Dec 2020 : 08:09:44
I agree it certainly looks as though the Conclave of Silverymoon is the most likely, as maransreth suggested, however certain points conflict still.

If the curator has worked there for 35 years and she has never seen anyone return from the crossroads, that means people have been entering the crossroads several times over the course of 35 years. A crossroads doesn't move, so she have to have worked in that same spot for 35 years. So the institutions that have moved, or been destroyed and rebuilt between 1337 DR and 1372 DR can be rules out.

Utrumm's Music Conservatory was located on the northbank of Silverymoon up until some time in 1372 DR when it was moved to the southbank. The unoccupied site was then reopened as the House of the Harp. This is further cemented in Silver Marshes, p 62. So the curator cannot have worked in the library for 35 years in the House of the Harp.

Arkhen's Invocatorium has also moved recently.

Everdusk Hall burnt down in 1347 DR, and was then rebuilt.

The Lady's College was established in 821 DR, presumably under the same name. So unless there's a source that says it was established under a different name that was later changed, that doesn't fit the bill either.

The Vault of the Sages was built on the northbank in 900 DR and moved to the southbank in 1247 DR. While it's been in the same spot for more than 35 years, I find no evidence of it having changed names.

The Map House was established by the Heralds in 1247 DR in the same building that previously housed the Vault of the Sages. Alas no signs of a name change.

Miresk's School of Thaumaturgy has been merged with the university since 1369, and I don't find a lot of information about it prior to that. Nothing about it having a library, nor about the place or Miresk himself having been called Cantlowe.

So as it stands the best candidates is the Map House and the Vault of the Sages in my opinion. But until someone confirms they've changed names at some point we can't know for sure.
cpthero2 Posted - 15 Dec 2020 : 05:12:17
Learned Scribe Returnip,

quote:
The Vault of the Sages has changed name, was a library before as well, but have been rebuilt after it burned down and thus haven't always been in the same spot. It's part of a larger collection of buildings since it's part of the Conclave of Silverymoon.


I would agree with that supposition, however, the library was destroyed quite a long time ago, and is currently identified as the Cantlowe Library Archives. We know this as the curator has worked there for (35) thirty-five years, and as of the publishing of Magic of Faerun, the date of the Realms was approximately 1371DR.

quote:
Everdusk Hall is also part of the Conclave of Silverymoon and is an elven temple and lore house. Unfortunately it has also been rebuilt after burning down. Other member institutions of the Conclave of Silverymoon does not qualify for similar reasons, having moved, been rebuilt, not renamed and so on.


Consider my points above, and please do comment! :)

Best regards,




cpthero2 Posted - 15 Dec 2020 : 05:02:34
Learned Scribe manransreth,

My apologies. I sincerely just posted this, as I had my text box open all day as I was working my day job. I agree with you. I hope you find my research to be commensurate with yours, and certainly didn't mean to dish on yours. :)

Best regards,






cpthero2 Posted - 15 Dec 2020 : 05:00:06
Learned Returnip,

I'm going to have to say, my suspicion is that it is the Great University of the Gem of the North, otherwise known as the Conclave of the Silverymoon. Here is how I support my position. From Magic of Faerun, p.46,
quote:
This crossroads is in a secure room in the Cantlowe Library Archives. The library curator lets people into the room, but warns the characters that no one has ever returned from beyond the crossroads in the thirty-five years she has worked at the university.


Facts identified from the 'Cantlowe Library Archives':
  • The library is unequivocally a library
  • the crossroads is in a secure room within the library
  • no one has ever returned after using it
  • the curator is a woman
  • the curator has worked there for (35) years
  • the library is at a university


Assumptions:
  • Magic of Faerun (MoF) is limited to only the continent of Faerun
  • Kara-tur is mentioned once nominally in MoF: "Some (particularly those from Kara-Tur and other lands far to the east) add a fifth element, wood, or use a slightly different ring of elements." (p.12)
  • Zakhara is mentioned once nominally: "As the Magister, Azuth taught many people the practice of magic, and was responsible for creating the prototypes of many powerful magic items. Azuth is said to have studied with mages from Mulhorand, explored the ruins of Netherese cities, bartered spells with wizards of Halruaa, learned from elven high mages of Cormanthyr, and studied the genie magic of the far-off land of Zakhara." (p.6)
  • I am taking words and statements at their literal definitions
  • University is defined as: "an educational institution designed for instruction, examination, or both, of students in many branches of advanced learning, conferring degrees in various faculties, and often embodying colleges and similar institutions."
  • College is defined as: an educational institution or establishment, in particular one providing higher education or specialized professional or vocational training.
  • School definition: "any institution at which instruction is given in a particular discipline"
  • All documented universities
    to current times are the only universities that exist
  • Academy definition: "a place of study or training in a special field"
  • Crossroads are invisible. They donít correspond to real roads or paths." (MoF, p.44)


With the above facts, assumptions, and definitions, I posit the following:

  • There are only (3) three documented universities as defined above
  • Of all documented forms of educational institutions, (10) had libraries
  • Of all documented forms of educational institutions, (1) was a university with a library

__________________

Out of all of the locations that have the greatest amount of facts in common with the Cantlowe Library Archives, The Conclave of the Silverymoon, i.e. The Great University of the Gem of the North, is that location.
  • Is a university
  • The university has a library
  • the university with a library is in Faerun


I'd love to hear feedback.

Best regards,










Returnip Posted - 14 Dec 2020 : 16:55:29
I really want to get to the bottom of this, so I'm listing the things we know below, and I hope we can figure this out together.

University
Has existed at least since 1337 DR
"Cantlowe library archive" (old name, since changed)
"It is in the same spot it always was" (indicates that the name has changed, but the building and purpose has remained the same)
"Now part of a larger collection" (indicates it wasn't before. Might indicate either it being part of a collection of a buildings, a series of libraries, or a group of universities)

Candlekeep could be a bastardisation of Cantlowe keep, but it's not a university and the trail of clues ends there.

New Olamn is a school established on existing property donated by Lord Kelthul Majarra and Lady Hlanta Melshimber, but the previous names of the property was the Stormwatch and Heroes' Rest villas rather than Cantlowe. Also the bardic colleges are not mentioned as universities. Part of the seven elder bardic colleges.

The College of Fochlucan has been renamed, but is not a university and have been moved. It is however part of a larger collection of schools, just like New Olamn.

The Vault of the Sages has changed name, was a library before as well, but have been rebuilt after it burned down and thus haven't always been in the same spot. It's part of a larger collection of buildings since it's part of the Conclave of Silverymoon.

Everdusk Hall is also part of the Conclave of Silverymoon and is an elven temple and lore house. Unfortunately it has also been rebuilt after burning down.

Other member institutions of the Conclave of Silverymoon does not qualify for similar reasons, having moved, been rebuilt, not renamed and so on.

Herald's Holdfast contains a bardic college called College of the Herald. That college is however not part of the seven elder bardic colleges.

I'm at my wits end here. Is it one of those or something else entirely?
Returnip Posted - 14 Dec 2020 : 10:32:26
quote:
Originally posted by maransreth


Looking into this, there are a few hints in the paragraph about Cantlowe. Let's look at the entire wording:

Cantlowe Crossroads (N2): This crossroads is in a secured room in the Cantlowe Library Archives. The library curator lets people into the room, but warns the characters that no one has ever returned from beyond the crossroads in the thirty-five years she has worked at the university.

First - university. Looking back at the old grey box, it is mentioned that universities are slowly on the rise for learning magic, however the traditional master/apprentice is still prevalent.

Having the wording Library Archives in a university then makes sense. There is the main library that students use, then there is the archives that new material arrives at before being copied and determined what will happen with it. Older material is taken to the archives for renewal, etc.

Ed's wording:
He told me that it is in the same spot it always was, but the name has changed and it is now part of a larger collection.

So with all of this in mind, I suggest that the Cantlowe Library Archives is one of the buildings in Silverymoon's new university - Conclave of Silverymoon. Of course the Conclave is too young to meet the criteria of 35 years worked at the university from the Magic of Faerun paragraph. But Cantlowe seems to me gaelic/celtic/old english in origin. I do not see the Moonshaes as having a university. I think Cantlowe may be a reference to the old bardic college - College of Fochlucan - that once was located in Silverymoon.




Broadleaf Lodge (Magic of FaerŻn, p 56) is a bardic college outside Brannoch in the Moonshaes.

You make some good points about it being a university.

EDIT: Looking into bardic colleges there is the seven elder bardic colleges. These are The Fochlucan, Mac-Fuirmidh, Doss, Canaith, Cli, Anstruth and New Olamn.

There was or is also a bardic college called College of the Herald, located in Herald's Holdfast.

However, considering Cantlowe is said to be a university I'm leaning more and more away from bards here, although it would explain the "it is in the same place but has changed name and is now part of a larger collection" part.

The Vault of the Sages, the city library of Silverymoon, was constructed on the same site as its predecessor the Silver Lady's Library, and it's part of the Conclave of Silverymoon. I don't see any link to the name Cantlowe however.
maransreth Posted - 14 Dec 2020 : 09:42:43

Looking into this, there are a few hints in the paragraph about Cantlowe. Let's look at the entire wording:

Cantlowe Crossroads (N2): This crossroads is in a secured room in the Cantlowe Library Archives. The library curator lets people into the room, but warns the characters that no one has ever returned from beyond the crossroads in the thirty-five years she has worked at the university.

First - university. Looking back at the old grey box, it is mentioned that universities are slowly on the rise for learning magic, however the traditional master/apprentice is still prevalent.

Having the wording Library Archives in a university then makes sense. There is the main library that students use, then there is the archives that new material arrives at before being copied and determined what will happen with it. Older material is taken to the archives for renewal, etc.

Ed's wording:
He told me that it is in the same spot it always was, but the name has changed and it is now part of a larger collection.

So with all of this in mind, I suggest that the Cantlowe Library Archives is one of the buildings in Silverymoon's new university - Conclave of Silverymoon. Of course the Conclave is too young to meet the criteria of 35 years worked at the university from the Magic of Faerun paragraph. But Cantlowe seems to me gaelic/celtic/old english in origin. I do not see the Moonshaes as having a university. I think Cantlowe may be a reference to the old bardic college - College of Fochlucan - that once was located in Silverymoon.
Returnip Posted - 14 Dec 2020 : 09:04:24
quote:
Originally posted by Kentinal

https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/wiki/Grove_of_Renewal

offers this
quote:
Travelers in Faer#251;n could travel to the grove by means of the crossroads in the Cantlowe Library Archives or by traveling through hazardous terrain beneath Toril.[1]


quote:
Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel (2001-08-10). A Druid's Grove (PDF). Wizards of the Coast. p. 3. Archived from the original on 2016-11-01. Retrieved on 2018-09-09


Might not be same one because of spelling.


It's the same. The Magic of FaerŻn web enhancement details the Grove of Renewal, but alas gives very little information to what or where Cantlowe is, apart from containing a library archive and a crossroads with backroad connecting to the grove.

quote:
Only other thing that search appeared to offer is that there is a The Lost Library of Cormanthyr , however it does not appear to have held the name Cantlow or Cantlowe the name might be lost as well. Nor are any other hints given as to location, it got lost after all.



If that is the library we're looking for it sets us up with even less information. Then again, Elminster lives in one of the dales, does he not? Does he have a private library perhaps?
Kentinal Posted - 14 Dec 2020 : 01:20:55
https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/wiki/Grove_of_Renewal

offers this
quote:
Travelers in Faer#251;n could travel to the grove by means of the crossroads in the Cantlowe Library Archives or by traveling through hazardous terrain beneath Toril.[1]


quote:
Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel (2001-08-10). A Druid's Grove (PDF). Wizards of the Coast. p. 3. Archived from the original on 2016-11-01. Retrieved on 2018-09-09


Might not be same one because of spelling.

Only other thing that search appeared to offer is that there is a The Lost Library of Cormanthyr , however it does not appear to have held the name Cantlow or Cantlowe the name might be lost as well. Nor are any other hints given as to location, it got lost after all.

Returnip Posted - 13 Dec 2020 : 21:49:15
quote:
Originally posted by Kentinal

The best I can offer is a library archive is a library that contains historical books and records. Copies can be made, however items themselves can not be loaned out.

That you can not take a book out of an library archive, like you can take a book out of a public library. Even many public libraries often have books or newspapers that you can read but not remove.



Gotcha. So if Candlekeep was originally Cantlowe Keep, that might make sense. But how to determine?

EDIT: Currently researching the name and different spelling variation irl.

Maybe some powerful person named Cantlowe who loved books lived there and upon their death made it a library to preserve their massive book collection? Do we have a date when Candlekeep was built? When was the inception of it's current use?

I'll just answer myself since I found some more answers. Candlekeep built circa -200 DR. It became a sanctuary for knowledge after Alaundo's death in 76 DR if the source I found is correct and he actually died from a plague the year after arriving at the keep.

So some 275 years prior it was built. For what purpose? Alaundo allegedly went there to study the knowledge contained so it was clearly a sizeable library by that time (75 DR).

EDIT 3? So I'm trying to find any references that could have potentially inspired Ed to come up with the name Cantlowe, but nothing seems to connect. There's a pretty cool looking church with a big, crenellated tower in Aston Cantlow, England that became famous a few years ago when they brought up a law from the 18th century to pressure a neighboring farmer to pay about a quarter of a million pounds for repairs. Maybe Ed heard about that and was inspired by the name.

I can't find anything in the history of the library he works/used to work at himself. No connections to its history that seem relevant.
Kentinal Posted - 13 Dec 2020 : 21:33:08
The best I can offer is a library archive is a library that contains historical books and records. Copies can be made, however items themselves can not be loaned out.

That you can not take a book out of an library archive, like you can take a book out of a public library. Even many public libraries often have books or newspapers that you can read but not remove.
Returnip Posted - 13 Dec 2020 : 21:11:38
My turn to bump it.

I'm currently researching something that relates to this mention of the "Cantlowe Library Archives" and I would really like to know where it is.

Based on Ed's cryptic reply it's clear it's an existing library that has changed name. But in what way is Candlekeep "part of a larger collection"?

The description says that the library curator lets people into the room but warns them that nobody has returned from beyond the crossroads in the 35 years she has worked there. That sounds to me like the guardian of the opposite crossroads is dead, making it a one way backroad. And it's quite possible that the guardian died a long time ago considering nobody has arrived in the library archives in a long time.

One question I ask myself is "What is a library archive"?

EDIT: Is it possible to move this discussion to general forgotten realms instead? I get the feeling this will be quite a speculative discussion, and if Ed doesn't want to spill it that might be the only route to go.

EDIT 2: It would seem the destination of the backroad is detailed in the Magic of FaerŻn web enhancement.
cpthero2 Posted - 16 Feb 2020 : 06:58:04
Hello Acolyte Wesley,

I am certain you are not around on here anymore, but your questions is fantastic!

I am bumping this issue as I am quite interested in it. I haven't been able to find anywhere where the Cantlowe library is located. I even tried researching secondary references to see if something near it would lead me somewhere and then on to the library, but alas, no.

Anyone else here on the site have any ideas as to another source that nails down that library's location?

Best regards,


Eremite Posted - 06 Feb 2005 : 10:31:57
It's mentioned as a destination of a crossroads & backroads. I think it is shown as Cantlowe (with an e) and its location has been a mystery since Magic of Faerun was published.

The question was posted a couple of years ago at the FR List and a couple of other places but I've yet to see an answer.
Dargoth Posted - 06 Feb 2005 : 05:24:26
Where is the Cantlow libary mentioned in MOF?

(By the way Im not sure where suppose to be posting new threads in the chamber of Sages forum Alaundo may move your thread when he sees it)

PS: Going off Eds cryptic response Cantlow Libary may be an earlier or another name for the Candlekeep libary

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