The History of the Elves of Corwyn

THE FIRST AGE

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The history of the elvish race began in the First Age, when the elves first landed upon the shores of Corwyn from the distant lands of Eryn Norvë. The ancient elves had traveled across the vast Wyn Myr Ocean in search of a new home, and took the lands of Corwyn as their own. The ancient elvish pioneers were the; “Elder-Elves.” They were also called Silvar-Elves, the ancestors of the modern-day Grey-Elves of Corwyn. The elves expanded their civilization across the continent, calling it Ectharë, meaning “paradise.” The Silvar-Elves were led by the House of Alessarë, and Elegheron Alessarë was the first anointed Elf-King of Ectharë. At that time, the only other sentient race the elves encountered was the race of dragons. Some dragons were friendly, others were not, and by the end of the First Age, the race of elves allied itself with all good dragons and made war upon the evil dragons. The conflict was terrible and much of Corwyn was laid waste. The Evil dragons were led by a fearsome dragon named Calegorax. The War of the Dragons ended in an elvish victory at the Battle of Merizath. During this battle Calegorax was slain, but as he lay dying, uttered a famous curse that the Silvar-Elves were cursed and would find no peace on Corwyn

THE SECOND AGE


The Silvar-Elves continued to prosper in the Second Age, rebuilding and expanding Ectharë. They built magnificent cities of silver and gold, notably the Elven capitol of Elutheria in the west, the Elf-city of Saravôsh in the east, and the twin citadels of Therakan in the north and Astrakan in the south, as well as the far southern cities of Alarë and Selunë. Ectharë was a wondrous civilization, filled with art and culture, beauty and grace.

Unfortunately, this time of peace and prosperity was not to last. For in the year, 572/2, a beautiful elf sorceress named Lorynäe Anarivon, murdered King Starion Alessarë and she and her followers sought to usurp the Eternal Throne. She and her followers then waged a thousand-year civil war. The loyal elves were led by Starion’s son Ismelian Alessarë who swore to avenge his father’s murder and eradicate all Dark-Elves from Corwyn forever. The war that followed came to be known as the War of Wrath. The elves that followed Lorynäe came to be called the Dark-Elves, or Drothë; meaning “those who follow the darkness.” The Dark-Elves used magic to create a hybrid half-elf race called the Gauth to fight in their war, as well as legions of orcs and goblins. The war was long and bitter; the elf capitol of Iskarynë was reduced to rubble in the fighting, and soon after, the great elvish city of Saravôsh was completely obliterated in a terrific magical explosion set off by the Dark-Elves. The explosion destroyed the city, killed Elf-King Ismelian Alessarë, and tens of thousands of elves on both sides. The explosion was so great; it created a huge deep chasm hundreds of miles long called Grôn.

Eventually the Silvar-Elves got the upper hand, led by Ismelian’s son, King Talarion Alessarë; known by his friends and foes as “Brightstar.” Talarion was the greatest elvish warrior in history, and won countless battles against the Dark-Elves and their servants. The Silvar-Elves eventually called upon both humans and dwarves to aid them in their fight against the Dark-Elves. Humans answered the call. The dwarves, angry over earlier slights from the elves, took no part in this war; despite pleas from the elves. This refusal has made the elves look upon dwarves with disdain to this very day. Ultimately, the Dark Elves were defeated at the Battle of Grôn. The remaining surviving Dark-Elves were driven underground through the very chasm they had created, and their Gauth servants were killed or banished into the eastern wastelands. Talarion died during this final battle, but he did avenge his father and grandfather before he fell in battle.

The War of Wrath had many dark legacies. Foremost was the permanent devastation of eastern Corwyn. Second, the Gauth race was not destroyed, but only banished. They would return under their greatest leader, a powerful sorcerer named Alokkair, who would continue to wreak havoc on Corwyn for centuries to come. Also, the Elf-Realm of Ectharë was shattered by the war. Ectharë was broken into three smaller Elf-realms; Wyntharë in the west became the home of the Grey-Elves, Thekarë in the north became the home of the Wood-Elves, and Melinarë in the south became the home of the High-Elves. Of these three civilizations, only Melinarë has survived until the present day. Thekarë was later destroyed by Alokkair in the Fourth Age, and the Grey-Elves of Wyntharë withered away and most left Corwyn across the Wyn Myr by the Third Age. Only a few still remain in a small enclave called Antharë. After the fall of Thekarë, the Wood-Elves were scattered into small settlements strewn throughout the forests of western Corwyn, and some became barbaric and wild and were called the Wild-Elves. Only the High-Elf civilization of the Melinar Forest thrives today. Today all elves are distant and a bit aloof from the other races, their time of glory long past, most of the Silvar folk reflect sadly upon times of the ancient past.

THE THREE NEW ELVISH NATIONS

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The great Silvar realm of Ectharë collapsed at the end of the Second Age, it then broke into three smaller and distinct Elf-realms.

Thekarë


The far-northern Elf-realm was called Thekarë, which meant ‘Tree-Home’ in the Silvanestri tongue. Over time, the elves who settled here became known today as Wood-Elves, or ‘Thekyr.’ The Wood-Elves had rich brown or black hair, pale tannish skin, and bright eyes of green, blue, or grey. Unlike the western Elf-realm of Wyntharë, and the southern Elf-realm of Melinarë, the northern Elf-realm took upon itself the task of keeping vigil on the East. The Elf-kings of Thekarë solemnly watched the East and their warriors and rangers protected the West from its evil for centuries. They knew that the curse of the Dark-Elves had stained that land permanently, and that nothing good would ever come from that dreadful region. The Wood-Elves of Thekarë made their capitol the beautiful forest city of Therakan, called the ‘Circle of Trees,’ and the Wood-Elf Kings sat upon the famous Oakheart Throne. The forest that surrounded Thekarë became known as the Silvarwood, and the Wood-Elf culture that thrived was a wonder to behold. In the Third Age, the Wood-Elves also expanded west through the region known today as the Pale and established Malanäe, a small coastal city on the east shores of the Athlan Myr. From here they traded with the men of Thalar and Amar, as well as dwarves of the north. But their presence was known to Alokkair in the East, and he greatly desired to destroy the Wood-Elves, and remove them as a threat to his domination of the West. Eventually, through a series of wars, the Wood-Elves of Thekarë were greatly weakened and their vigil on the East waned as Alokkair grew strong again behind the Saugreth-Muir. In 1233/4, Alokkair made his move. Under the direction of Alokkair, a huge orcish army led by a terrible Demon named Vorilax invaded the Silvarwood and completely destroyed the Wood-Elf realm of Thekarë. The elvish city of Therakan was left in ruins and the Wood-Elves were all slain or fled. At this time, the three Silvarils of the Wood-Elves were lost as well, but legend says that the Demon-Lord never found them because they were hidden by the Wood-Elves in the secret tomb of Anarion Liëflynne, the last fallen Elf-king of Thekarë. After Alokkair’s invasion, the Elf-city and the woods around it became a haunted place of dread called Mystwood, in which no Wood-Elf will dare to tread, even today. The few surviving Wood-Elves who escaped the attack upon their homeland migrated southeast to the Ravenwood, and to other scattered woodlands as well. A few even joined with the High-Elves of Melinarë. The symbol of the Wood-Elves of Thekarë was a tree, a shooting star, and three orbs, all in gold, on a dark green field. The Elf-realm of Thekarë encompassed the territory of what is today the Mystwood Forest.

Wyntharë


The far-western Elf-realm was called Wyntharë, which meant ‘West-Home’ in the Silvanestri tongue. The elves of Wyntharë were the most reclusive and powerful of the three groups. Their mastery of magic knew almost no bounds, and some say it surpassed even the greatest of talents of the Saar and the Council of Sorcerë. These western elves eventually evolved into the Elf race known today as the Grey-Elves, or ‘Grafyr,’ of Corwyn. Their skin was pale, their hair silver or gold, and their eyes were bright amber gold, pale grey, or even a deep violet purple. These elves were the shyest of elvish races and found no joy in even the smallest contact with other races, and had such meetings only rarely. The Grey-Elves that founded Wyntharë were led by the beautiful Queen Ariel Alessarë, who had been a powerful mage in Ectharë. The Grey-Elves founded the Veiled Throne of Wyntharë, although only two elves at upon it. Little else of their exotic culture is know today, except that the Grey-Elves built a marvelous civilization far in the Westvale, with secrets still unknown today. By the tenth century of the Third Age, the Grey-Elves of Wyntharë became restless and for reasons unknown, yearned to return to their ancestral home of Eryn Norvë. Over the centuries that followed nearly all of the Grey-Elves of Wyntharë left the shores of Corwyn and sailed back west forever. The Grey-Elves were led across the Wyn Myr by King Ajathar Alessarë, also a descendant of the Elf-kings of Ectharë, and the only son of Queen Ariel. Within less than five-hundred years, the entire region known today as the Westvale was abandoned by the Grey-Elves, leaving their beautiful city of Wyn Falas empty and abandoned. This city and the lands surrounding it eventually became inhabited by early tribes of humans called the Iskari, and eventually became the human kingdom of Cyrendar in the early Fourth Age. The few remaining Grey-Elves that remained on Corwyn settled far to the south of the Westvale, in a region known today as Antharë, a deep forested enclave of the Grey-Elves. Wyntharë remains the least understood and most mysterious of the ancient lost civilizations on Corwyn. The symbol of the Grey-Elves of Wyntharë was a silver ship, surrounded by a ring nine silver stars, on a pale lavender field. The Elf-realm of Wyntharë encompassed the territories of what are today the realms of Cyrendar and the Elf-realm of Antharë.

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Melinarë


The last of the three great Elf-realms that evolved from the First Age elvish civilization of Ectharë. The elves that inhabit the Melinar Forest are called the High-Elves or ‘Melynn,’ and make up the largest and most powerful elvish nation on Corwyn. In fact this woodland realm is sometimes called Highforest by outsiders as a nickname, for its High-Elvish heritage. Few outsiders are allowed within the great forest, and most trade is done along the coasts, or in specific elvish cities located near the fringes of the forest. The High-Elves are seen by many as arrogant and stubborn, and sometimes even resented by both humans and dwarves. This attitude comes with the great age of elvish society, who naturally sees itself as superior to all other races, as Corwyn was first explored and cultivated by elves alone. To protect the forest realm, the Elf-king can muster over 25,000 elvish warriors in time of war. The High-Elves of Melinarë are a quiet, introspective folk that love artwork, crafts, reading and writing. The High-Elves delight in making items of wondrous quality with wood, clay, and metal. Their skills at the creation of weapons are superb, surpassed only by the elvish mastery of armor. It is here that the long kept secret of elvish chain mail is still kept. Elvish armor smiths are true masters of their craft, making suits of elvish chain that give a +1 bonus over all other suits of chain mail made by humans. For a suit to be made to fit another race is very rare indeed and these fine suits can cost thousands of gold pieces, and are only owned by royalty or the wealthiest merchant lords. The elves live a quite life in harmony with nature deep within their beloved forest. They are not as friendly as the Wood-Elves, and not quite as aloof as their Grey Elf cousin either. Most High-Elves have a love of nature and despise the creatures and dark sorcery of the East. On many occasions they have come forth out of their forest realm to fight alongside the races of men and dwarves against the tyranny of the East.

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