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T O P I C    R E V I E W
Wooly Rupert Posted - 09 Jan 2019 : 16:19:25
It occurs to me that Ed has been posting Realmslore on the Twitter, and not everyone has the Twitter.

So I thought a single place where such lore could be collected would be a good thing.

Ed is a frequent poster there, adding all sorts of Stormtalons and Epic Fantasy stuff, but for the purposes of this thread, I'd like to keep it focused on his Realmslore.

(I'm also stickying this thread, to make it easier to find)

Ed Greenwood (@TheEdVerse) on Twitter

The #Realmslore hashtag on Twitter
25   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
Zeromaru X Posted - 05 Feb 2020 : 23:34:26
About the Sign faction's symbol

@dmportella
@TheEdVerse Hi ed sorry to disturb I wanted to speak to Tim Beach one of the authors for Factol's Manifesto but i dont know how to contact him. I like to ask What is the symbol for the faction sign of one. I cant make up what the symbol is suppose to be. ty is advance

@TheEdverse
Nice work! That symbol is the All-Dragon, or the World-Dragon. To some it is Io, to others Asgorath, but to Signers it is the Wyrm that links and births all planes and cosmologies, and transforms one cosmology to another—and it is also THE Dragon, or the Self (as Signers believe “the world exists because the mind imagines it. Without the self, the multiverse ceases to be.”) The faction sigil depicts the All-Dragon flying/swimming in the aether of primal nothingness up to regard you (you = a Signer, member of the faction), meeting your eye, challenging you to join it, become one with it, and so dream and shape the multiverse.

Metagame: it is no coincidence that the magazine published by TSR was originally called “The Dragon.”
#Planescape

(And by "cosmologies" here I mean the Great Wheel, the World Tree, the World Axis, the crystal spheres we saw in Spelljammer, with the aether there being referred to as the phlogiston.)

--------

I had to post this. This is something I'm really interested in
Wooly Rupert Posted - 05 Feb 2020 : 23:04:11
quote:
Originally posted by Seravin

If Jeff left it open for discussion, let's go with Ed's take on it! :) Elminster did call her Finder's "immmortal vessel" in Azure Bonds when he blocks Finder from firing the crossbow at Phalse..and Ed and Elminster share a brain so...makes sense!



Jeff Grubb basically said it depended on the story -- if the person writing it needed Alias and her sisters to be immortal, they were.

Given Flattery's seeming immortality, that it was something Finder would have been trying for, and that Cassana certainly would have wanted it, I would say that immortality makes sense. (A counter-argument, though, would be that immortality is rarely given out, and perhaps when the gods acted to let the vessels be truly sentient and able to reproduce, the "price" was a normal mortal lifespan. And since Cat and Giogi had kids, then the vessels can reproduce)
Seravin Posted - 05 Feb 2020 : 21:55:09
If Jeff left it open for discussion, let's go with Ed's take on it! :) Elminster did call her Finder's "immmortal vessel" in Azure Bonds when he blocks Finder from firing the crossbow at Phalse..and Ed and Elminster share a brain so...makes sense!
Wooly Rupert Posted - 05 Feb 2020 : 21:42:15
quote:
Originally posted by Seravin

@TheEdVerse
Can you give us any update on the Wyvernspur clan? How is Immersea doing?

1)
In the 1490s DR, House Wyvernspur flourishes, both financially and in numbers and the personal achievements of its members.
Having passed this family to my good friends Jeff Grubb and Kate Novak back in 1986 (real-world ating), I leave Wyernspur lore details to them, though I can mention in passing that Suzail currently (1490s DR) knows an adventurous young man named Everend Paerevel Wyvernspur, and he has slightly older two sisters who are far more successful and farfaring as adventurers, Lyriasara (“Leera”) and Asmarra (“Mara”), and at least two younger sisters who seldom if ever visit Suzail. Not to mention several uncles who were rather rakish in their day Immersea I can wax slightly more eloquent about.
It, too, flourishes, its winter population over 4,000 strong, and swelling in summer by over 800, due to wealthy social climbers in both Arabel and Suzail who built or have rented homes along the shores of the Wyvernwater that they visit for recreational purposes in good summer weather. The town flourishes, now boasting many potters, weavers, and publishers (though the odorous tanneries and papermaking mills are elsewhere), and has expanded greatly to the east, along both Wyvernwater shores, and a little to the west, but up and down Calantar’s Way. The Wyvernspurs remain the most prominent local nobility, and prosperous, locally influential non-noble Immer clans include the families of Beldrar, Coldreth, Fostren, Ghelk, Perinpost (a him family), Sagrask, and Tranther. Local fishing has declined as catches have become smaller, likely due to overfishing, and this has resulted in some fisherfolk turning their hand to other work, and at least one, the Ghelks, starting a successful crab hatchery, in a shoreline warehouse just south of the town docks.


Replying to @TheEdVerse
Can you point me in the right direction to find out the fate of Kate Novak and Jeff Grubb's Alias and Finder Wyvernspur? Or how to contact them or someone else to ask?

You can read the tale of Finder (his journey towards godhood), in the TSR-published novels FINDER’S BANE and TYMORA’S LUCK (both by Jeff and Kate). I assume you’ve read their earlier novels AZURE BONDS, THE WYVERN’S SPUR, and SONG OF THE SAURIALS.
Their novel MASQUERADES tells of the further adventures of Alias. She’s immortal, and so still out in the world (and still a Harper), as are some of her clones created by Phalse.




Huh. I'd assumed they'd be immortal, but Jeff Grubb dodged the question when I asked him at GenCon, one year.

Them being immortal means that the Waterdhavian one I ran with could still be around.
Seravin Posted - 05 Feb 2020 : 19:56:57
@TheEdVerse
Can you give us any update on the Wyvernspur clan? How is Immersea doing?

1)
In the 1490s DR, House Wyvernspur flourishes, both financially and in numbers and the personal achievements of its members.
Having passed this family to my good friends Jeff Grubb and Kate Novak back in 1986 (real-world ating), I leave Wyernspur lore details to them, though I can mention in passing that Suzail currently (1490s DR) knows an adventurous young man named Everend Paerevel Wyvernspur, and he has slightly older two sisters who are far more successful and farfaring as adventurers, Lyriasara (“Leera”) and Asmarra (“Mara”), and at least two younger sisters who seldom if ever visit Suzail. Not to mention several uncles who were rather rakish in their day Immersea I can wax slightly more eloquent about.
It, too, flourishes, its winter population over 4,000 strong, and swelling in summer by over 800, due to wealthy social climbers in both Arabel and Suzail who built or have rented homes along the shores of the Wyvernwater that they visit for recreational purposes in good summer weather. The town flourishes, now boasting many potters, weavers, and publishers (though the odorous tanneries and papermaking mills are elsewhere), and has expanded greatly to the east, along both Wyvernwater shores, and a little to the west, but up and down Calantar’s Way. The Wyvernspurs remain the most prominent local nobility, and prosperous, locally influential non-noble Immer clans include the families of Beldrar, Coldreth, Fostren, Ghelk, Perinpost (a him family), Sagrask, and Tranther. Local fishing has declined as catches have become smaller, likely due to overfishing, and this has resulted in some fisherfolk turning their hand to other work, and at least one, the Ghelks, starting a successful crab hatchery, in a shoreline warehouse just south of the town docks.


Replying to @TheEdVerse
Can you point me in the right direction to find out the fate of Kate Novak and Jeff Grubb's Alias and Finder Wyvernspur? Or how to contact them or someone else to ask?

You can read the tale of Finder (his journey towards godhood), in the TSR-published novels FINDER’S BANE and TYMORA’S LUCK (both by Jeff and Kate). I assume you’ve read their earlier novels AZURE BONDS, THE WYVERN’S SPUR, and SONG OF THE SAURIALS.
Their novel MASQUERADES tells of the further adventures of Alias. She’s immortal, and so still out in the world (and still a Harper), as are some of her clones created by Phalse.
Zeromaru X Posted - 05 Feb 2020 : 16:19:57
I'll appreciate it if you post those tweets here!

He also wrote something for Planescape as well, talking about the nature of the World-Dragon (Io/Asgorath/etc.)
Seravin Posted - 05 Feb 2020 : 15:17:37
AND - he confirmed Alias is immortal and still alive in 5th edition era. YAY
Seravin Posted - 05 Feb 2020 : 11:16:19
He just coughed up some info on the Wyvernspurs and Immersea in the 1490s which was delicious. I can post later if no one else does!
Wooly Rupert Posted - 02 Feb 2020 : 16:28:04
On food preservation and street vending:


Feb 1, 2020


@jayeedgecliff

Sir @TheEdVerse, i was thinking a lot about ice magics due to my own party having an unintended icy themed selection of gear.

Given the relative ubiquity of, at least, minor cantrippy magics how much do realmsians rely on refrigeration, or even just putting ice in a drink?

What I really started wondering is if any of the really major cities have noviciate magi or clerics or even just wild talents pushing around ice cream carts (bonus if there’s a tune), or if frozen yoghurt is enjoyed anywhere.

But then I also wondered if the likes of powerful ice mages or Wossname cold lady … priests with a culinary streak have invented anything unique. I mean b maybe there’re many health benefits for ogres nomming a gorgon blood slushie.

I’ve not got to time of troubles

In game yet if anything changes for any reasons due to that, or the Spellplague thing or whatever other Big Stuff is post ToT

As always, thanks a bunch for … everything.

… why do i suddenly have a vision of some Waterhavian selling eelcicles?


@TheEdVerse

Just as in our real world, most folk in the Realms can’t afford to hire magic, and can’t work their own (though many villages have local citizens who make a living employing their particular ‘wild talent’ to light fires or illuminate or whatever).

So they make use of ice-houses and cold cupboards and deep cellars (i.e. natural stone heat sinks and the ambient underground temperature) to keep things cool, combined with blocks of ice cut in winter and dragged into such places.

If they can afford the spells of local priests or wizards, they augment these arrangements with occasional cold magics in the worst rises of heat, to prevent food spoiling and loss of all ice and so on.

Usually this means the local temple (of any non-fire, non-smith deity, not just Auril) provides cold storage facilities in its own underground cellars (with priests casting cold spells in rota to keep things cold), and locals, for fees/offerings, come to fetch their own goods from said cold storage (priest brings to them, they don’t get to go down and rummage) or to buy cold-stored goods from the priests (like eel or fish laid in ‘in bulk’ by the temple, and maintained as a ‘feed the community’ store).

No, there are no carts except as delivery-carts in winter, when harbor ice can be used to keep cart contents cold. In other words, the carts rush goods to customers who order, they DON’T wander the streets playing tunes to attract passing shoppers. In Waterdeep, eelcicles ARE sold (as are fish, so you buy “coldsear silverfin” or “coldsear harbor eel”), but only in the cold depths of winter, and they’re made like this:

Eels netted, brought out of the sea, chopped into thumb-length or shorter segments, and cooked in sour wine or beer to cut their natural slime, then grilled (seared) with spices and herbs for a better taste, then dropped into shallow pans of frigid harbor water to be frozen into thin sheets of ice, then the customer comes to the Dock Ward shops where this is done with their own bucket, pay for the amount they want (it’s cheap: 1 cp buys a big bucket-full) then the proprietor chops the edge of a sheet with a hatchet, shovels the ice-and-eel shards into the customer’s bucket, and off they go (to dine in the warmth of their own home or rented lodging, when the ice thaws).

I’ve eaten eel, and lamprey, and can assure you that for my stomach at least, the cutting-the-slime AND searing with seasonings steps are highly necessary steps. We real-worlders would likely use a dry rub, as for steaks, for that grilling step. Enjoy!

(And if you don’t, well, the bucket you fetched the eel in is handy, for returning the eel to the wider world. Ahem.)
#Realmslore


@jayeedgecliff

About what i expected, sadly.

Oh well … so much for my vision’s a faerûnian 7-11 with a half-orc selling suspicious slurpees (mostly joking)
Thanks


@TheEdVerse

Heh. In the Realms, that half-orc would be more like Terry Pratchett's Cut-Me-Own-Throat Dibbler selling his sausages; vending "mystery meat" handpies and sausages popularly rumored to be filled with missing pets and neighbours.


@jayeedgecliff

Oh! I never thought to ask that! Does Eveningstar or Suzail have not just Throat-esque vendors, but one as thoroughly (in)famous and Known. A Cormyrian CMOT Dibbler?


@TheEdVerse

Eveningstar doesn’t; anyone trying would likely starve (too rural a place to get much trade, when folk can readily buy handpies and sausages they trust from neighbours who make them, or eat their own).

Suzail has always had (in its westernmost, slum-like streets, nigh the docks) warehouses where shady thugs sell hot meat buns and sausages and handpies full of mystery meat, or mystery fish, or even openly (“dew-worm in a bun, 3 buns for a copper”). They were seldom half-orcs, but two down the years have been (the big-jawed, amiable Thelve Harrdra in the early 1300s DR, and the squinting, point-nosed “Ratface” Rurdur, no known last name, in the later 1300s).

Waterdeep has always had street carts in Trades Ward, Castle Ward, South/Southern Ward and especially Dock Ward, stalls in The Market, and warehouses in Dock Ward with serving-windows where ‘mystery meat’ food of various sorts was dispensed, including the infamous “offal on a stick” (usually fried intestines of oxen, or goose livers, or skinned fried rat or plucked fried harbor gulls). Half-orc vendors are rare because it’s always better for sales to have a good-looking young human lad or lass hawking the wares, but half-orc cooks and butchers (in the back rooms) aren’t. Perhaps the most infamous is Cooth the Cleaver, who flourished—if that’s the right word—in the 1320s to 1340s DR (but was found floating in the harbor, gutted like a fish and throat-slit, one spring morning in 1343 DR).

Later half-orc butchers and cooks of Dock Ward include Ruegrel Rausdyn, Ilvart Lunth, and (1470s to date) Auszklurt “the Awful.”
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 02 Feb 2020 : 16:27:13
On the Eveningstar Gorge:

Feb 1, 2020


@Sartana87

Hi @TheEdVerse! Here's my question : How high is the Eveningstar Gorge? I wonder if a PC could climb it (or monsters attack from it eh eh)? And are both sides of the gorge even? Many thanks.


@TheEdVerse

It depends on where in the Gorge you are. Right at the cliff-face where it ends (as far south as it goes), it's around 140 feet high, with both sides of the gorge climbable but dangerous, because pieces of the soft limestone can break off when being climbed and hurtle down to the bottom of the gorge below, with a climber, to land on the rubble of past "cracks and falls." The Gorge gets shallower as you traverse it north (past the entrance to the Haunted Halls) into the Stonelands, to where the stream that carved it rises (to the surface), so at its head, up in the Stonelands bedrock, it's about two feet deep. It's soft limestone with a hard dolomite (harder limestone) "cap" atop it, forming a plateau that is the southern edge of the Stonelands. At this edge, atop the cap on both sides, are grazing pastures for sheep kept by Evenar (Eveningstar-resident) farmers. There are "pillars" of rock that over the centuries have been separated from the cliffs on both sides of the gorge by pieces of the side walls breaking away to leave them isolated, particularly at the mouth of the gorge on the west side (the temple side). This happens in the real world: every winter, water that's seeped down into the limestone freezes, expands, shoves the sides of the crevices it's seeped into apart a tiny bit, and over time (many winter freezeups), the rock splits far enough to topple away, exposing a new cliff-face and widening the gorge.

So, yes, the sides are climbable (with some danger), and goat-track paths zig-zag up those sides to reach the clifftop pastures, and there's ample room in the long, long gorge for monsters to lurke, children to play, lovers to tryst, Zhents to have clandestine meeting with each other, peddlers to camp if they lack the coins to stay at an inn or stables, and so on.
#Realmslore


@Sartana87

Is "the stream" the Starwater or another source of water? Sorry, just to be sure.


@TheEdVerse

It's the Starwater. Which rises as a tiny spring, and grows as it descends the Gorge.
Oh, and the sides of the Gorge are rough and irregular, but very close to the same height as each other in most places.


@Sartana87

Oh ok the warm waterfall is the source of the Starwater. Thanks a lot !


@TheEdVerse

Yes, but is joined by much seepage out of both sidewalls of the gorge (i.e. rainwater and meltwater draining down through the plateau that is the local Stonelands) as it descends; many tiny springs augment the main flow.
#Realmslore


@Sartana87

That's crystal clear. Again, thanks a lot for your time.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 02 Feb 2020 : 16:26:28
On reincarnation:

Feb 1, 2020


@MisrulesTheDay

Good Master Ed! Other than the eponymous spell, what are the circumstances under which a soul might reincarnate in the Realms? Is that something that happens?


@TheEdVerse

It is, though not often. Sometimes it occurs due to a curse or magic item ability or ‘hanging’ (cast in a spot, waiting for a future passersby to affect) spell operating on a dead being.

More often, however, it’s because a deity wants that soul to live on to complete a task or attempt something. Not that they’ll necessarily communicate that desire directly to the reincarnated being, who may blunder along.
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 21:02:43
On the most famous paladin of Tyr:


Jan 10, 2020


@evertos

@TheEdVerse , quick question... who was the most famous paladin of Tyr?!


@TheEdVerse

Where and when? In the Realms, I assume, but when, Realmsdate, and where? Also, among whom? Communications in the Realms isn’t great, except along major trade routes, so someone can locally famous and nigh-unheard-of far away, and there’s also a difference between who’s famous to most in society, and who’s famous within the church of Tyr.


@evertos

I ran a adventure that the followers of tyr they are losing power, and the players will go after the most famous champion of tyr. There are someone I can use?


@TheEdVerse

So, someone famous right now in the Realms. If that’s the 1490s DR (current for 5e Realms), that’d likely be Ulwulf Tharandor, Stern Hand of Tyr, a wandering/adventuring paladin of Tyr The Just most often found recently venturing along the Heartland overland caravan trade routes. If you’re back before the Spellplague in the 1380s DR or earlier, the most famous would be Rarandor Vrael, Shield Of Justice, a wandering/adventuring paladin of Tyr most often found in Amn or Tethyr. (Piergeiron the Open Lord of Waterdeep is arguably better-known, but many folk forget he’s a paladin, because he’s Open Lord or because of his nickname “the Paladinson”).
#Realmslore


@gkrashos

I’d love to know more about Athar “the Shining Knight”, the father of Peirgeiron of Waterdeep.


@XynRaven

Was there ever a case of an adventurer traveling Faerun (or any other continent, I just know Faerun best) far and wide and gaining a reputation over at least a good deal of it?


@TheEdVerse

Certainly. The explorer Dabren Sashenstar, for one.


@TheEdVerse

Sorry. Mistyped. "Dabron Sashenstar," not Dabren.
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 21:01:52
On the population of Asbravn:

Jan 19, 2020


@AlexMcclay2000

Hey @TheEdVerse I have a simple question: Im reading the FRCS from 3rd edition and I am looking at Asbravn, and the population mentioned is over 5000. Now isn't that too big for a town of only 50 buildings, or does that figure include the surrounding farmlands?


@TheEdVerse

Asbravn was the market town for the surrounding farmlands, so the local census (that the Riders in Red Cloaks used to plan patrols and budget for trainees and overall strength and deployment) was conducted there, and included everyone coming in from the hinterland to market. Also, at the time that the 3e FRCS was current, local population figures were augmented due to extensive copper and iron mining in the Far Hills, a short-lived industry because the near-surface deposits were worked out in a little over a decade. At that time, the Zhentarim were tightening their grip on Iriaebor (see Mark Anthony’s Harper novel Crypt of the Shadowking), so some folk from that city got out and relocated to Asbravn—and so did many many Zhent agents, to get in on the metals trade by running smelters in the Asbravn area. (So, a “perfect storm” to temporarily bump up local population figures.)
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 21:01:21
On the ponies of the High Moor:

Jan 31, 2020


@rwgs76

Dear @TheEdVerse, what can you tell about the High Moor ponies? Specifically, what's the breed's name and appearance? Are they wild or domesticated? Thanks in advance.


@TheEdVerse

The ponies of the High Moor are known as “the Shalune” as a species. They are wild, are short and shaggy (long-haired) and have black legs and muzzles. In hue and shape they look like real-world Konik horses, but have reddish backs, and are always stocky of build (heavily-muscled). Orcs and hobgoblins have been known to eat shalunes and to force them to drag logs or other heavy cargos by means of ropes and sledges (beating them with sticks on either side of the head to guide them). Trolls occasionally manage to catch and eat them, too, but shalunes can outlast most pursuers and outfight many of them (wolves usually avoid them, as shalune hooves can smash a wolf’s skull with ease). There have been many attempts to domesticate them, but all have failed; captive animals seem to soon will themselves to death. There are persistent legends in the North of a giant Shalane who comes in the howling heart of the worst blizzards to lead the ponies to shelter. In a few tales, this gigantic horse is described as a goateed unicorn or even a wingéd unicorn.
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 21:00:55
On the Shadow Weave, Io, and Sardior:


Jan 29, 2020


@TORAlexander1

If killing or (in lore) replacing mystra with upset the arcane magic, and destroy the weave, then what about killing who ever owns the "shadow" weave? What IS the difference, if any, between the shadow weave and regular weave? Is it just one is evil-ish...

Or is it more than that? And can you cast 12th level spells with the shadow weave, unlike the normal one? Has anyone tried?


@TheEdVerse

Shar created the Shadow Weave to obey her (for the use of mortals loyal to her), but it "leans on"/is an echo of/calls on the Weave (who is Mystra herself, and a webwork spanning the world that is a way of calling on the natural forces of the world). As an echo of the Weave, the Shadow Weave can never be greater than the Weave, and in fact is lesser when it comes to creating and controlling magic; it's better at destroying and compelling. And as it calls on the Weave, it's subject to the limits placed on the Weave by Mystra (and Ao), so no one can use it to craft or cast magics beyond what mortals can use the Weave for. Yes, powerful archwizards and archliches and even dragons have tried...and failed. Usually the spell just doesn't work, but if the 'wrong' forces have been unleashed, the caster is often hideously mentally and/or physically maimed, or outright destroyed. "Always wise to avoid trying to outdo Icarus," as Elminster warns we Earth types.
#Realmslore


@TORAlexander1

That sucks. So the shadow weave is a weaker, KNOCK-OFF version of the actual weave, and is essentially a parasite weave, in the fact it's a weave.... THAT DRAWS AS FROM ANOTHER WEAVE?!

Shard doesn't seem that powerful anymore, and I know she created the the shadow fell, but does that mean mystra (or one of the incarnations of the weave goddess) created the feywild?


@TheEdVerse

Nope. Treat all claims about "this deity created that" with extreme caution. So many of them are propaganda from the priesthoods of said deities, who get their information from the deity and then expand on it...when both deity and priests want more worship.
#Realmslore


@TORAlexander1

But, does this mean someone who does NOT worship shar, can draw on the shadow weave. And is the shadow weave weak in every regards? Also, why would AO care about the weave?

And speaking of which. If Io gave up his body, mind, and soul to make the dragon gods, why is he still worshipped?

And why isn't sardior not considered one of the siblings of bahamut and tiamat, given he completes them, holds the middle main faction, and seems to reason with both?

@TheEdVerse

In theory, yes. In daily practise, those who aren’t loyal to Shar first and foremost consider the Shadow Weave “of her” and therefore off limits to them unless they become her priests or paladins or fanatical coverts.

And unless they become that close to Shar, they usually won’t know HOW to access the Shadow Weave. Like Weave-based spells, you must craft the spell properly (incantation, somatic and material component, and your own mindset/concentration as caster, during perfect performance of the casting) in order for it to work at all. If you don’t know how to do it “just right,” no access, and (if you’re lucky!) no magic.

As for Io and Sardior: You’re applying LOGIC to matters of faith? Really? Bravo, but so many folk in the Realms don’t, and so worship as they do.

And dragons think not as humans do (like elves, they take “the long view,” and more most other sentients, they consider themselves truly special and greater than other races). So what they revere differs from what we put our faith in.
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 20:59:22
On the tallest mountain in the Realms:

Jan 27, 2020


@AlexMcclay2000

hey @TheEdVerse I have a simple question, whats the tallest mountain in the Realms?
I was looking at the Lands of Intrigue sourcebook, specifically the Topographical map that came with it. The tallest mountains that i could find were 5000 feet.


@TheEdVerse

So far as Elminster knows, the tallest mountain is Cloudspire (so named because its peak is permanently shrouded in a cloud layer) in the Yehimal range. If you look at Karen Wynn Fonstad’s most relevant map from the FR Atlas, find the label “Kun-Yen Shan,” and go due south from the ‘e’ in that label to the high ridgeline she drew in the green central peaks area, the peak right where your eyeline intersects that ridgeline is Cloudspire. Also known as Arthael to the elves, Yavalaur to the gnomes, Yauvdagh to the dwarves, and (Cloudspire being the Common Tongue name) variously to humans as Dzayur, Mount Huul, and Kulmount.

Cloudspire has little mineral wealth, but a few interior caverns, which have been the lairs of several dragons until remorhaz moved in and started a family (there are now many, and they use high valleys in the Yehimal range to farm wild herds of rothé and musk oxen and mountain goats for food). The precise height of Cloudspire is unknown, but the customary bottom of its cloud layer is about 32,000 feet, so it’s likely 35K to 36K in height.
#Realmslore


@Lord_Toast13

Wait...unknown, is it because something interferes with divination spells? Other than local critters eating said diviners.

@TheEdVerse

Properly handled by the DM, all divinations will result in somewhat cryptic answers (to prevent it being the "accomplish everything with no effort" spell). In this case, the cloud cover foils vision/line of sight spells, and the gods not caring about a peak's height, so they don't know it and can't be bothered to find out is a big reason. Measuring is hard for mortals and gods, because the land around Cloudspire is all high mountain range; where do you measure FROM? We real-worlders use sea level as "zero" and measure up from there, by triangulation and satellites and so on that gods in the Realms neither know nor care about. Divination can only tell you what a god wants you to know, and sometimes a mortal query will be met by a divine shrug.
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 20:58:49
On the yakfolk village on Mount Hamarhaast:

Jan 19, 2020


@TimeBust

Heya Ed, I've been reading up on yakfolk and I was wondering, is the yakfolk village on Mount Hamarhaast in the Ice Spires (as described in Storm King's Thunder) indicative of recent far-reaching northward Yikarian expansion, or are they there for some other reason?


@TheEdVerse

The yikaria village on Mount Hamarhaast exists due to the near-exhaustion of metallic ores in the Zakharan mines traditionally worked by the miner genies of the yakfolk. Forced to seek iron, copper, nickel, and the like elsewhere to fashion their best tools and weapons from, they prayed to their Forgotten God (Faceless God) for guidance, and the deity sent dream-visions to certain yikaria of where they might find such needed access: the Mount Hamarhaast site of their village, which sits atop a particular natural cavern where they could gain access to mineral-rich ore veins without extensive digging—and without warfare with the dwarves of Citadel Adbar, as the yakfolk don’t trade in metals in competition with the dwarves, nor take much (they mine and smelt only to supply all yikaria).
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 20:58:10
On titles at Silverymoon's Conclave:

Jan 29, 2020


@RedNoBlue

Hi there, just a quick selfish question. As a lecturer in all things D&D magic, I feel a bigger connection to Silverymoon's Conclave rather than Candlekeep. What would a good title be? Lecturer? Sage? Teacher?

Also, I hope you're recovering well.


@TheEdVerse

I’m getting better, yes, thanks!

And experts at the Conclave use the ascending titles of: Guide, Magister, Spellmagister, and (just one at a time) Master, with “of the Conclave” appended to each in full formality, to avoid confusion with civic magisters (judges) and Mystra’s servants.
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 20:57:40
On Tchandrae Euinwood:

Jan 31, 2020


@TimeBust

What became of Tchandrae Euinwood after her (as far as I could tell) sole mentions in Volo's Guide to the North and Guide to the Savage Frontier? Her profile seemed to hint at some importance in her future, did she grow up to become a fully fledged Chosen of Mystra?


@TheEdVerse

No. She is one of literally thousands of sentient beings in the Realms who have a ‘wild talent’ for some aspect of magic, due to the world being a-crawl with magic (wielders of the Art using it, drawing on the Weave), and everyone born into this world being exposed to flows of magic. Affects most not at all, growing numbers are born with the Gift (ability to wield the Art), and here and there, lucky (or unlucky; it all depends on your point of view) individuals manifest a ‘wild talent’ that lets them work magical effects without casting or knowing magic.

The specifics of Tchandrae’s life are, I’m afraid, NDA. I will say that certain groups of mages sought to capture her in order to make use of her skills, and a certain other group of mages sought to hide her to prevent that capture.
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 20:56:47
On the coat of arms of Tethyr:


Jan 26, 2020


@LucJrMartin1

what is the coat of arm of Tethyr?


@TheEdVerse

The blazon of Tethyr has changed many times. The current (1490s DR) arms (far simpler than most of the earlier arms, and making possible a simple badge of a shield crossed by bands of three hues, now seen on Tethyrian soldiers’ surcoats and banners everywhere) are as follows: a heater-shaped shield divided into three horizontal bands (fesses) of equal height/width.

The bottom band is sky blue, and has a silver sea cat (sea lion, sometimes called a “morse” in real-world heraldry) naiant (swimming horizontally, nose facing the viewer’s left of the shield, so tail to the right) on it, representing Tethyr’s coast and the sea lions who historically rescued Prince Nearel of Tethyr.

The middle fess is wine-red, representing the wines of the realm and its martial pride (critics say it represents all the spilled blood of Tethyrians fighting each other, down the years). In the center of this fess, right in the center of the shield, is a (sized to touch the top and bottom of the fess) simple four-pointed white star (with the points vertical and horizontal, matching the cardinal points of a map compass, rather than pointing to the diagonals or elsewhere). This represents Queen Zaranda Star Rhindaun and the dynasty she began.

The top (“chief”) fess is gold, representing the verdant grain crops and wealthy of the realm.

(For those wanting to see how the sea cat is portrayed, but NOT its pose, see: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Complete_Guide_to_Heraldry_Fig314.png ).
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 20:56:17
On the Dragonspear Wars:


Jan 22, 2020


@DMBIV2

Following up on this, might you be able to clarify some dates for this befuddled bard? I'm puzzling over the Dragonspear Wars. I'm seeing two official citations (1315 DR & 1356 DR) for the first, then 1363 DR for the second -- or the events of "Hordes of Dragonspear." Thank you!


@TheEdVerse

Sages and bards frequently disagree over nomenclature, sometimes for the same reasons that opposite sides in a conflict prefer their own differing names for a particular battle (Bull Run vs. Manassas in the American Civil War, for instance).

In the case of Dragonspear Castle, hobgoblins used it as a base to raid caravans traversing the Trade Way from 1305 DR on, and became enough of a nuisance to trade that they were exterminated by armies from Waterdeep and Baldur’s Gate in 1315 DR (hardly a “war”...or is it?).

Devils retook the castle in 1354 DR, arriving through portals from Avernus that the 1315 DR armies had been unable to destroy.

The devils were ousted in 1356 DR in what was retroactively called “The Dragonspear War,” but retook the castle in 1363 DR, and led an army that destroyed The Way Inn and besieged Daggerford before being defeated (by a force including PC adventurers, for gamers playing HORDES OF DRAGONSPEAR), and this was retroactively called “The Second Dragonspear War.” By some; others prefer to regard both wars as just larger skirmishes among many. (Dragonspear Castle was built in 1255 DR, but has been home to portals linking Toril with Avernus since 1290 DR, and a home to an ever-changing array of dragons, brigands, and various goblinkin down the years since.)
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 20:55:48
On the enabling of Waterdhavian noble Houses Zoar and Gildeggh


Jan 13, 2020


@oakthorne

Hey @TheEdVerse : When you get a second, can you recall when Houses Zoar and Gildeggh were ennobled? Were they part of the bunch in 1248 DR, one of the “backdated” ennoblements, or was theirs afterwards?


@TheEdVerse

In 1262 DR, the Guildwars ended with only two guildmasters surviving: Ehlemm Zoar, a gemcutter, and Lhorar Gildeggh, a shipwright. They ruled together as the Lords Magister, but bickered so much their rule became known as “the Misrule of the Magisters.” They were slain by two former Masked Lords (Baeron and Shilarn) in 1273 DR, after refusing to relinquish command and depart the city. Baeron became Open Lord, and the Lords of Waterdeep were reinstalled in government, with the Zoar and Gildeggh families banned from Waterdeep.

The established legal grounds for banning families was to exile “treasonous” noble houses, so in the act of exiling House Zoar and House Gildeggh, Baeron ennobled them (in 1273 DR), and thereafter they were regarded by all as exiled nobles.
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 20:54:26
On the first alteration specialist mage:


Jan 13, 2020


@CimmerianGod

Very , very first Aleration Magic User that you know of Ed? ( details please) whether fr your own pnp campaign or anywhere in that vast reservoir of lore within your noggin. This answer is very important and valuable to me. Thank you , thank you and thank you in adv


@TheEdVerse

In the Realms, the first specialized Alteration-school magic user that I know of was Imre (pronounced “IMM-ray”) the Transmuter, an artificer (wizard) of Imaskar. He likely wasn’t the first, just the first I’ve ever written about. He was one of the builders of the city of Inupras beginning in -7979 DR (Inupras wasn’t inhabited until -7975 DR). Imre delighted in spell innovation and crafting, not in power or political importance, and was a teacher of many. Unambitious, he loved books and board games and good teas and cheese. He was a brown-haired man of average height and build and unremarkable looks, who wore ankle-length robes and was followed about by a floating-nigh-his-shoulder satchel (of his own enchanting) of teamaking items, tools, what we would call a clipboard and Imaskari called a “dereth,” plus scrolls, inks, and quills with which to write.
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 20:53:41
On the kingdom of Delmyr:

Jan 22, 2020


@RCollotto

Ciao Grande Saggio @TheEdVerse, does the Kingdom of Delmyr still exist in the current era? Who is the King? Is the Kingdom always populated by halfling Baronies? Thank you


@TheEdVerse

Yes, the kingdom of Delmyr still exists, though in the Spellplague and Sundering it lost two kings, Joroelner Gleddyn and his son Mendaer (and three Gleddyn brothers and their mother, ending the Gleddyn line) in the tumult; monsters from Abeir overran the kingdom and were defeated only after decades of hard fighting (as some of those monsters were dragons who chose caverns in the Glittering Spires as ideal places to lair).

Delmyr is currently ruled by Queen Alsarra Ambrutter, second of her line (she succeeded her older brother Jhaland, who perished slaying the red dragon Alamrauthur), and she is tirelessly rebuilding the realm (better roads and bridges, crown assistance in sewing and reaping crops, tending wild growth to yield more wild herbs and medicines and foodstuffs in the future). Initially derided and resisted by the baronial families, who all still exist and cling to their power, she has won them all over into staunch support, because all can see she is bettering the lives of all and improving Delmyr.

However, a shadow is rising beneath Delmyr: someone (drow? Illithids? Elminster believes the latter) is behind mustering monsters of the Underdark and driving them upwards through the caverns and passages of the Glittering Spires. They have almost eradicated the gnomes, and the supplies of weapons, tools, and wire the Delmyrans traded for have dwindled to nothing. Monsters of the Underdark are frequently raiding the hin surface realm now, and if the kingdom doesn’t arm and effectively resist, the hin may soon follow the gnomes into near-extinction.

The veteran warrior Darthyn Belrowhin leads Delmyr’s too-small army, the Defenders (really a handful of soldiers leading a motley militia).

To make coin for hiring adventurers and mercenaries, Delmyr has begun to trade harlanthra, its nutty, green-hued mushroom cheese, with farfaring human merchants and peddlers. Prized handwheels of this superb edible now grace the tables of nobility, royalty, and the wealthy in Impiltur, Cormyr, and Sembia. Yet most humans in the Heartlands and Sword Coast still don’t know where Delmyr is, or even what it is.
#Realmslore
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Feb 2020 : 20:53:04
On the laws of Waterdeep:

Jan 11, 2020


@DanielProoglow

Greetings, Great Sage!

I'm working on a campaign right now and I'm in need of comprehensive information on legal proceedings and laws of Waterdeep. I found some information in "The City of Splendors" and "WDH" but I don't think that's enough. I simply need more!


@TheEdVerse

Formally, there isn’t any more. The Code Legal is it.

However, over the years, a huge body of what we real-world moderns might call “case law” (precedents from settled cases) has built up, and decrees have been issued by the Open Lord (usually speaking for the Masked Lords) which amount to new laws applying within Waterdeep and its patrolled environs.

Here's the short version of how justice works: nobles and now guildmasters have the right to be tried by the Masked Lords, or by a trio of magisters including a Masked Lord; everyone else is tried by a magister (black-robed city magistrate). If you’re an accused, you don’t get to decide who.

There are no lawyers/barristers/solicitors as we would define them in our modern real-world, but there are private “advocates” an accused can hire who will argue in court for those who are too frightened, injured, or tongue-tied, or have language difficulties (and for convenience, some Realms writers have referred to such individuals as “lawyers.”) The City Watch is the local police force, who make arrests.

In practise, the wealthy and powerful, or individuals operating in politicially ticklish situations, can often arrange for charges to be dropped in return for paying fines and undertaking quiet agreements with the authorities (such as “stay away from X” or “leave the city forthwith” or “you are not to attempt to purchase Waterdhavian property this season or next”). The rather bloodthirsty Code Legal has for years been unofficially nudged towards a “pay this fine and we’ll forget all about it” model because Waterdeep wants itself to be seen as a tolerant, crossroads trading city open to all, not a trap of litigation for all who visit.
#Realmslore


@DanielProoglow

Thank you so much sir, I actually have even more ideas on my court dramas now!


@TheEdVerse

You're very welcome. There's also this...
https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/wiki/Lawyers_(Waterdeep)


@DanielProoglow

Oh, a lovely story! Though I'm thinking that perhaps in 1490s the ban could be lifted if some particularly convincing fellow would convince some lords that trials with lawyers could be a lovely sight for public, therefore an opportunity to raise some money on the show? C:


@TheEdVerse

Sure! That's a likely, logical development. IF the Masked Lords decide they, and they alone (not a guild) get to decide who's a lawyer in the city, and who's not. (And Laeral will use Mirt and others to covertly investigate all lawyers to make sure they're not outland (foreign) agents, or members of the Xanathar's organization, the Unseen, or any other criminal cabal.) Nobles will, of course, take to using lawyers very quickly...
#Realmslore

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