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Jeremy Grenemyer
Great Reader

USA
2717 Posts

Posted - 18 Feb 2015 :  05:36:13  Show Profile Send Jeremy Grenemyer a Private Message
Glad to have helped give your mind a tickle, THO. :)

Thanks Ed! The idea of ghosts being effected by song is a fun one to think about.

Look for me and my content at EN World (user name: sanishiver).
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5036 Posts

Posted - 19 Feb 2015 :  17:12:37  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Jeremy, I don’t know if you’ve ever run across it, but that idea is dealt with in a brief but very effective scene in Christopher Stasheff’s classic fantasy novel THE WARLOCK IN SPITE OF HIMSELF.

And I didn’t just show up to chat about other folks’ fantasy novels, I came to post a response to John Lynch, who asked (back on Feb 6th): “I started re-reading Elminster's Forgotten Realms again and saw the mention of broadsheets. I was wondering when (where?) did they first appear and how has their use over the years changed (increased? decreased?).”

Ed saith:
When and where they first appeared in lost to faulty memories (“the mists of time”), but despite some recent claims to the contrary, it was NOT in Kara-Tur, where the very concept of “written rumors, gossip, and dissemination of reports about events” didn’t fit with society.
Among humans, written news/entertainment that could be purchased by just anyone in the general public (and from the start, there was a strong element of both sensational fiction and cryptic “personals” in such publications) first arose in Calimshan sometime in the 100s DR and was immediately and viciously stamped out by the pashas, though peddlers and other traveling (and “shady”) merchants continued to make broadsheets as wrappings for goods they sold, and distributed these around the Lake of Steam sporadically for the next three hundred years or so (and from then on, publications of independent, extremely-low circulation broadsheets, with “print runs” of sixty copies or less, have been a feature of the Border Kingdoms).
Although this sort of sporadic and localized publication, most often as a handbill advertising a fair or other event, with the back surface used for brief news reports, jokes, lyrics, and almanac-like musings on future weather, popped up here and there along the Heartlands trade routes and especially the Sword Coast, with Scornubel being the location of perennial “printing services” in the form of swift hand-copying scribes who literally wrote multiple duplicates in a sort of assembly line on various rag papers throughout the 400s to 1200s DR, “modern” broadsheets began in earnest in the 1320s DR, in Waterdeep.
They were a brief fad, then dwindled under guild pressure - - until the late 1340s DR, when some guilds saw them as an advertising and image-buffing public relations boon, and stopped trying to hamper and sabotage broadsheet makers. Public “cryers for hire” in the streets became broadsheet-selling “broadcryers” overnight, and the popularity took off, becoming all-pervasive by the end of the 1350s DR. Although the Spellplague and wars and other disasters have temporarily made publications falter, broadsheets have been popular in Waterdeep ever since, and to a much smaller extent have appeared regularly (independents with small print runs, often published by iconoclasts who publicly feud with rival broadsheet-makers) in Neverwinter and Baldur’s Gate.

And there you have it! Ed’s potted history of broadsheets!
Enjoy!
love,
THO

Edited by - The Hooded One on 19 Feb 2015 17:13:01
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Aldrick
Senior Scribe

704 Posts

Posted - 19 Feb 2015 :  18:12:28  Show Profile Send Aldrick a Private Message
Hello Ed and THO! I hope life is treating you both well.

I have been going back over the various deity information given over the years, both here on Candlekeep and in source books (and most recently Elminster's Forgotten Realms), but I still feel that some things are left unclear as it relates to canon.

When we talk about deities, it is frequently from a general birds eye view. This makes sense, because it allows us to generalize, but I think something that keeps getting lost in translation is what it is like to be a local NPC priest of a temple or a shrine. We are not talking about adventurers here, but just local people doing their day job.

So, this is somewhat of a broad question: What is life like for the average priest in the Realms? Not someone extraordinary or special, just the average priest of the average faith.

Some specific questions to help narrow the focus of such a broad question.

Does the priest even receive divine powers? Is divine spellcasting reserved only for an elite few special individuals within a faith, or does every single priest of the faith have the ability to work divine magic the moment they take their oaths?

How immersed is the average priest in local politics? This has been touched on in the past, and the answer here seems to be 'as deep as one can get' -- however is this overt involvement? Or is it considered a social taboo for a priest to go poking his nose into affairs outside the purview of his faith? How much sway does the average priest hold with those in power and the common people?

What about internal temple and cult politics? Are the average priests drawn into these disputes, or are they reserved for those of high ranking office? What are some examples of common disputes that might be had?

How much does a cult vary from location to location? We have a very broad overview of the faiths of the Realms, but are they all sort of cookie cutter? Or are there regional (and even local) differences depending on where you are--for example, is the cult of Sune the same in Tethyr as it is in Aglarond?

Finally, how common are schisms and heresies within the cults? These things obviously happen, but how common are they? What is the general reason for the deity basically not showing up and saying, "Yeah, that guy over there is totally nuts. Don't listen to him. This is what I want you to do." It is sort of assumed that deities generally only communicate with dream visions and minor manifestations (such as a holy glow around an altar or something). However, on the other hand we have plenty of examples of deities being directly involved in the Realms in a tangible way--how does all of this square?

The last question to me is the most important. I struggle to understand how the average priest would view someone like Elminster. At best the average priest has had one dream vision, and that was likely calling him to serve in the faith. That's it. Meanwhile, he could be in the presence of a man (assuming he is aware of it, of course) who has had numerous intimate dealings with the goddess and has even felt the touch of her direct divine intervention. Though Elminster might be disdainfully scornful of it, how does the average priest of Mystra not venerate him as some type of saint? How does the priest not bow and grovel before someone who has had such personal attention from Mystra?

I realize this is a lot to ask! However, it feels like there is this huge gap of knowledge missing from the Realms. For me, it is important to understand what it is like for the local priest, because that sort of colors the larger faith as a whole.
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Blueblade
Senior Scribe

USA
804 Posts

Posted - 19 Feb 2015 :  23:13:34  Show Profile  Visit Blueblade's Homepage Send Blueblade a Private Message
Not to be flippant here, but Aldrick, I would wager good money that the answers to some of your above questions are going to include "it depends" (as in, it does vary from faith to faith, place to place, and over time).
But those are great questions. I look forward to the answers we get.
BB
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5036 Posts

Posted - 19 Feb 2015 :  23:23:34  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hi again, all. Aldrick, these are great questions. They are also all actually topics Ed has discussed at length in panels and seminars at GenCons (especially back when the Realms, as its own product line, was young), but of course, if you weren’t there, you missed out on, say, four hours at a stretch of Ed explaining exactly how to play a lowly non-adventuring PC priest at a village shrine, or a cloistered high-level NPC priest (“monk” but not the character class) at a monastery, and so on.
The reason more of this has never been spelled out in print products is the publisher wanting to avoid more real-world controversy from the Christian religious right, and so preferring to leave a lot of what we might call “mundane daily religious detail” out of published products.
Your queries have gone off to Ed, and although (I know I sound like a broken record here, endlessly repeating the same little phrase) he’s VERY busy right now, I know he’ll get to answering them when he can. Possibly a few at a time.
love,
THO
P.S. And I won't take you up on that wager, Blueblade, because I KNOW you're right.
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Eli the Tanner
Learned Scribe

United Kingdom
146 Posts

Posted - 20 Feb 2015 :  00:37:54  Show Profile  Visit Eli the Tanner's Homepage Send Eli the Tanner a Private Message
Those seminars sound great. Does Ed have any plans to visit the UK at some point? I know some very homely pubs that Ed might appreciate...between conventions

Moderator of /r/Forgotten_Realms
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Aldrick
Senior Scribe

704 Posts

Posted - 20 Feb 2015 :  07:47:20  Show Profile Send Aldrick a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Blueblade

Not to be flippant here, but Aldrick, I would wager good money that the answers to some of your above questions are going to include "it depends" (as in, it does vary from faith to faith, place to place, and over time).
But those are great questions. I look forward to the answers we get.
BB


Yeah, I know. I was just looking for a very general overview ("of the average priest"), as discussing each faith would require an entire source book. I also started out with one question, realized it was too broad, and then tried to narrow it--only to end up with a ton of questions instead of one.

quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

Hi again, all. Aldrick, these are great questions. They are also all actually topics Ed has discussed at length in panels and seminars at GenCons (especially back when the Realms, as its own product line, was young), but of course, if you weren’t there, you missed out on, say, four hours at a stretch of Ed explaining exactly how to play a lowly non-adventuring PC priest at a village shrine, or a cloistered high-level NPC priest (“monk” but not the character class) at a monastery, and so on.
The reason more of this has never been spelled out in print products is the publisher wanting to avoid more real-world controversy from the Christian religious right, and so preferring to leave a lot of what we might call “mundane daily religious detail” out of published products.
Your queries have gone off to Ed, and although (I know I sound like a broken record here, endlessly repeating the same little phrase) he’s VERY busy right now, I know he’ll get to answering them when he can. Possibly a few at a time.
love,
THO
P.S. And I won't take you up on that wager, Blueblade, because I KNOW you're right.


Gah! If only we had YouTube and stuff like that back then. Imagine all the awesome lore we are missing. So sad.

Oh well. Thanks THO. Hopefully, Ed can find the time to share some of it again.
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Jeremy Grenemyer
Great Reader

USA
2717 Posts

Posted - 20 Feb 2015 :  09:15:32  Show Profile Send Jeremy Grenemyer a Private Message
Thank you THO for the recommendation. And great question JohnLynch on broadsheets. That's another topic I wish I had an extra set of days to dive into.

Look for me and my content at EN World (user name: sanishiver).
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Fellfire
Master of Realmslore

1944 Posts

Posted - 21 Feb 2015 :  14:28:30  Show Profile Send Fellfire a Private Message
Greetings, Lady THO. In ESdB and TomCosta's most excellent write up of Fox-at-Twilight, bladechimers (elfy swashbucklers) are mentioned as being a word/concept straight from Ed. Can you, or can he tell me more of this group? Notable individuals, other sources where they may have been mentioned, defining abilities (ed.-neutral) or reasons for their decline? That sorta thing. As always, thanks for your time.

Misanthorpe

Love is a lie. Only hate endures. Light is blinding. Only in darkness do we see clearly.

"Oh, you think darkness is your ally? You merely adopted the dark. I was born in it, molded by it. I didn't see the light until I was already a man, by then it was nothing to me but.. blinding. The shadows betray you because they belong to me." - Bane The Dark Knight Rises

Green Dragonscale Dice Bag by Crystalsidyll - check it out

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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5036 Posts

Posted - 21 Feb 2015 :  22:16:42  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
I don't think they've ever been mentioned in official Realms products, although Ed (speaking as NPCs, when DMing us) has mentioned them at least twice over the years. Which isn't a lot, and my characters have never knowingly encountered one.
So, off to Ed, in hopes of shared enlightenment . . .
love,
THO
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BenN
Learned Scribe

Japan
333 Posts

Posted - 22 Feb 2015 :  09:59:59  Show Profile Send BenN a Private Message
Dear THO,

There's a character in The Herald that I'm interested in, and thinking of incorporating in a storyline/campaign I'm developing - Narya Ilunedrel (one of guards of Myth Drannor's Steward of the South Gate). Has she been mentioned in any other published material? Arclath recognizes her, and mentions that his mother had "grudgingly spoken highly" of her. Did she survive the events of The Herald?

Any light that you & Ed can shed on this would be really appreciated!
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5036 Posts

Posted - 22 Feb 2015 :  15:35:42  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hi, BenN, I've tracked down an e-mail from Ed in which he says:

Narya survived, too, sorely wounded, but is under care in Semberholme and expected to survive; the right spells and treatment should replace the right forearm she lost in the fighting.

So saith Ed. And no, Narya isn't, so far as Ed or I know, mentioned in other published Realmslore, but I do know Ed has jotted down something of her story and past dealings with the Delcastles, because that same e-mail mentioned her as one of "half a dozen" elves not of prominent rank, influence, or published Realms profile that Ed "follows" in his imagination to chart the general tenor of the elves in that region (their rises, falls, attitudes, etc.). It might currently be NDA, but I've forwarded your query to him in hopes that it isn't, and you'll get a useful reply.
love,
THO
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1631 Posts

Posted - 22 Feb 2015 :  16:03:44  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage  Send Steven Schend a Yahoo! Message Send Steven Schend a Private Message
Just an FYI but wanted to drop in and wish Ed a Happy 50th anniversary of penning "One Came Unheralded to Zirta," aka the birth of the Forgotten Realms!

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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xaeyruudh
Master of Realmslore

USA
1726 Posts

Posted - 22 Feb 2015 :  16:54:29  Show Profile  Visit xaeyruudh's Homepage Send xaeyruudh a Private Message
Woohoo! Thank you Ed.
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Razz
Senior Scribe

USA
712 Posts

Posted - 22 Feb 2015 :  17:23:56  Show Profile  Visit Razz's Homepage  Send Razz an AOL message Send Razz a Private Message
I apologize if this question has been answered before (and I am sure it has, but my search abilities are miniscule in talent and if it has I kindly ask someone here to throw me the link to it), but here it is.

We are aware that the Realms, in most places, are much more progressive in terms of gender equality than medieval eras of our time, but in such places how does one determine lineage? Does a wife still take the husband's name? Does a husband take the wife's name? How do nobility handle this? Do the names hyphenate? I assume cultural tradition would take precedence, and if so, what nations enforce a male to take on the name of the family he is marrying into (instead of the woman, in most cases). I am assuming there is some sort of agreement between families. I assume it's something along the lines of: "Well, the Talathins have a much better reputation in regards to the populace than, so it would be best if your husband took on the Talathin name. Of course, such a bonding between our two families will make yours very prosperous thereafter, let us not forget." Do I have that correct on some level?

Edited by - Razz on 22 Feb 2015 17:24:29
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Jeremy Grenemyer
Great Reader

USA
2717 Posts

Posted - 22 Feb 2015 :  17:26:47  Show Profile Send Jeremy Grenemyer a Private Message
Happy Birthday Realms!

Look for me and my content at EN World (user name: sanishiver).
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Finglas Leaflock
Seeker

USA
35 Posts

Posted - 22 Feb 2015 :  17:43:07  Show Profile Send Finglas Leaflock a Private Message
Happy anniversary to Ed, and thanks for the heads-up, Mr. Schend!
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
2579 Posts

Posted - 22 Feb 2015 :  18:46:54  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message
Happy anniversary and once again thank you for the Realms, Ed

To all Facebook-using FR fans, you might be interested in checking out this page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/450517575051806/
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Baltas
Senior Scribe

Poland
497 Posts

Posted - 22 Feb 2015 :  20:05:09  Show Profile Send Baltas a Private Message
Happy 50th anniversary of the Realms Ed, thank you so much for creating them ! And the Anniversary of penning "One Came Unheralded to Zirta," is on the same day as my Birthday!

Edited by - Baltas on 22 Feb 2015 20:05:23
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BenN
Learned Scribe

Japan
333 Posts

Posted - 22 Feb 2015 :  21:23:44  Show Profile Send BenN a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

Hi, BenN, I've tracked down an e-mail from Ed in which he says:

Narya survived, too, sorely wounded, but is under care in Semberholme and expected to survive; the right spells and treatment should replace the right forearm she lost in the fighting.

So saith Ed. And no, Narya isn't, so far as Ed or I know, mentioned in other published Realmslore, but I do know Ed has jotted down something of her story and past dealings with the Delcastles, because that same e-mail mentioned her as one of "half a dozen" elves not of prominent rank, influence, or published Realms profile that Ed "follows" in his imagination to chart the general tenor of the elves in that region (their rises, falls, attitudes, etc.). It might currently be NDA, but I've forwarded your query to him in hopes that it isn't, and you'll get a useful reply.
love,
THO


Thank you very much THO!
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5036 Posts

Posted - 22 Feb 2015 :  23:14:38  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
You're very welcome. And while we await Ed's responses, I'm reposting here something I just posted in The Secret Creed of Gond thread, here at the Keep, regarding what's said in ELMINSTER'S GUIDE TO THE REALMS about the faith of the Wonderbringer:

* * *
me:
Heh. I was WONDERING how long it would take someone to notice the spellwebs [[note: in the Current Clack section of Ed's Polyhedron 64 Elminster's Everwinking Eye column]] and realize how long Ed has been hinting at this.
But yes, Jeremy's [[Jeremy Grenemyer]] comment has merit. The best way to view this is . . .

(and I'm paraphrasing an explanation Ed gave me, in what follows):

Gond and his highest priests mistrusting magic and trusting in devices and tools and processes that can be fashioned and used without any Art at all. But seeing that magic is "the big hammer" in the world, and they're just going to have to live with that, seeking to have influence through wealth and ruling or more often being "powers behind thrones" instead.
Until the Spellplague hits, they see it as proof positive how dangerous magic is and how much damage over-reliance on the Art can do to everyone, and in the power grab among the deities of the Sundering (with new Tablets of Fate to be written, reflecting the "new current" status, portfolios, and power levels of the deities), the same thing that caused all sorts of Chosen to be created by many gods, they see that it's time, or should be, to move actively against arcane spellcasters. NOT in an open "kill the dirty wizards!" confrontation, because that isn't Gond's way, but to resist and thwart and crowd out and hamper, because it's better for everyone (not just Gond and his faithful) if magic is rare and special and restricted.

So there you have it. And yes, that certainly does seem as if Gond has it in for Waukeen. (Not rape, but subsumption. As in, "conquer and wrest divine power. Perhaps wed or seduce to do so, if that's what it takes to both accomplish it and avoid other gods ganging up on Gond in reaction.") Again, this is based on Ed's hints.
He also took care to add:

The best thing about all of this is that mortals (yep, even gamers!) CAN'T know what's really going on with the gods (as even the gods themselves are often mistaken, spinning things, or outright lying), so this can be "true" or "utterly false" or somewhere in between in your Realms campaign, and so can how much Gond tolerates this move-against-magic approach within his clergy and lay followers. After all, his wisest course, given the great power of the Weave, is to sit back and say and do very little, so if Mystra ever musters her Chosen and/or servitors and/or wizards in general against Gondsmen/Gondar, Gond can say: "It was merely a heresy, never something I agreed with, but as I'm NOT the tyrant Bane or Shar is, it would be wrong of me to crush mortals who espouse it; mortals must grow in insight and mastery of the world with as little steering as we divine can give them, or they have achieved nothing and are not bettered by what they do."

So saith Ed.

* * *


There are other hints and tidbits in ED GREENWOOD PRESENTS ELMINSTER'S GUIDE TO THE REALMS, too. It bears re-reading often, if you love a rich and deep version of the Realms.
love to all,
THO

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Jeremy Grenemyer
Great Reader

USA
2717 Posts

Posted - 23 Feb 2015 :  00:37:29  Show Profile Send Jeremy Grenemyer a Private Message
Ok, I am confused.

Ed was born in 1959. If the Realms are 50 years old today, then that suggests Zirta was written when Ed was about 5 years old. So approximately 1964.

However, a couple of online sources indicate claim the year was 1967.

Can someone wiser than me sort this out please?

Look for me and my content at EN World (user name: sanishiver).

Edited by - Jeremy Grenemyer on 23 Feb 2015 00:38:01
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hashimashadoo
Master of Realmslore

United Kingdom
1101 Posts

Posted - 23 Feb 2015 :  01:13:53  Show Profile  Visit hashimashadoo's Homepage  Click to see hashimashadoo's MSN Messenger address Send hashimashadoo a Private Message
It was definitely written in the mid 60s. THO has previously stated that it was written in "1967 or so".

When life turns it's back on you...sneak attack for extra damage.

Head admin of the FR wiki:

http://forgottenrealms.wikia.com
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Razz
Senior Scribe

USA
712 Posts

Posted - 23 Feb 2015 :  02:26:55  Show Profile  Visit Razz's Homepage  Send Razz an AOL message Send Razz a Private Message
Will there ever be another "Elminster's Forgotten Realms?" I would so buy volumes of these. I read that book over and over, and keep wishing another was in the works.
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Baptor
Learned Scribe

USA
86 Posts

Posted - 23 Feb 2015 :  02:59:01  Show Profile  Visit Baptor's Homepage Send Baptor a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Jeremy Grenemyer

Ok, I am confused.

Ed was born in 1959. If the Realms are 50 years old today, then that suggests Zirta was written when Ed was about 5 years old. So approximately 1964.

However, a couple of online sources indicate claim the year was 1967.

Can someone wiser than me sort this out please?



I've heard Ed say he was 6 years old when he invented the Realms. So that would be at least 1965.

Jesus said, "I am the Ressurection and the Life. Anyone who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and those who live and believe in Me will never die. Do you believe this?"
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