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    Canonfire :: View topic - High Elves
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    High Elves
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    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Dec 01, 2006
    Posts: 34


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    Mon Jan 25, 2021 7:28 pm  
    High Elves

    A question on the origins of high elves.
    Where do they come from?
    From various sources, canon, and stuff thats been around for so long it might as well be canon, grey elves migrated from the western mountain ranges once the last of their great cities fell, sylvan elves seemed to have always inhabited the Vesve, and the wild grurach (sorry if i slaughtered the spelling) from what is now the valley of the mage.
    But what of high elves? Are they also migrants? Were they around before the Flan? Where did they live? No mention of ancient elven cities or nations before the arrival of the grey elves as far as I am aware.
    Adept Greytalker

    Joined: Sep 20, 2004
    Posts: 545
    From: British Isles

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    Tue Jan 26, 2021 1:28 am  

    Hey, I'm not sure I've seen anything in canon sources that describes the geographical origins of the various elven sub-species. If you can remember those sources I'd be really interested to see as it's not something I've ever given much thought to.
    GreySage

    Joined: Jul 26, 2010
    Posts: 2574
    From: LG Dyvers

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    Tue Jan 26, 2021 5:14 am  

    I recall that Thiondar's Legacy, from Dungeon Magazine #30, included a history of the Grey Elves and their founding, which was a separating from the High Elves. Though it wasn't set in Greyhawk, specifically, it seemed aimed mainly at this setting.

    SirXaris
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    Last edited by SirXaris on Tue Jan 26, 2021 9:22 am; edited 2 times in total
    GreySage

    Joined: Aug 03, 2001
    Posts: 3179
    From: Michigan

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    Tue Jan 26, 2021 8:17 am  

    In my history, I have the high elves as the inhabitants of the Kingdom of Celene in the age after the wood elves, grugach, aquatic elves, gray elves, winged elves, and proto-drow split from the main elven line, but before the war with the drow and the migration of the gray elves back into the Flanaess.

    The Complete Book of Elves had it that the various worlds were settled by "nomadic high elves," making them sort of the default elven race from which other elven lines sprung.
    Encyclopedia Greyhawkaniac

    Joined: May 29, 2018
    Posts: 561


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    Tue Jan 26, 2021 11:52 am  

    In general I have the elves, dwarves, dragons and many demi-human civilizations predating human development. The elves werent originally from Oerth and arrived from another plane/dimension.

    My last campaign Variant has the elves as part of the crew of a vast moon-sized starship which is now wrecked/dormant and mistakenly seen as the moon Celene.
    Journeyman Greytalker

    Joined: Sep 20, 2001
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    Thu Jan 28, 2021 11:29 am  

    I love that idea, Jason. I have the elves coming from the moon Celene as well—though, in my campaign, their CG management style ended up in environmental devastation of the moon (e.g. why the surface is a wasteland of dead cities—I think there's this weird myopia among Greyhawkers, as if chaotic good is somehow less destructive of natural balance than the other extreme alignments.)

    I almost always agree with Rasgon, and his elven history is tremendous and indispensable, but I hate introducing high elves into the realm of Celene. They weren't there in the original sources, and we have numerous other locations throughout the Flanaess ideal fora high elf homeland (Highfolk/Vale of Luna, Duchy of Ulek, Adri Forest, etc. etc.). Celene's character seems more distinct if it is and has always been a faerie realm.

    IMC, I also decided to make the old grey elf/faerie elf distinction part of Oerthly lore, and declared the Faerie Realm of Celene the homeland of the Faeries, while the grey elves of Sunndi are properly the grey elves. Thus, most elves of the Flanaess can tell a faerie or grey elf's homeland at a glance.
    Journeyman Greytalker

    Joined: Sep 20, 2001
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    Thu Jan 28, 2021 11:30 am  

    I also agree with Jason that the Flannae presence should precede the demi-humans—I think this was first articulated by Gygax on a forum.
    GreySage

    Joined: Aug 03, 2001
    Posts: 3179
    From: Michigan

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    Thu Jan 28, 2021 8:01 pm  

    edmundscott wrote:
    I hate introducing high elves into the realm of Celene. They weren't there in the original sources


    That's a good point. The ancient Celene described in my history covers much more territory than modern Celene (incorporating, at times, what are now Veluna, Highfolk, the Pomarj, and the Duchy of Ulek), but having it primarily populated by faerie elves instead of high elves is a good solution.

    But just saying "high elves originated in Highfolk" seems a reasonable alternative to my suppositions.
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Apr 18, 2005
    Posts: 82
    From: Adelaide, South Australia

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    Sun Jan 31, 2021 11:45 pm  
    Heretic's view...

    I've never really understood the separation of Grey and High elves. IMC I just have high elves and are a combination of high and grey. I see all the others types as distinct and having there own niche (wild - CN and a little feral; wood - more aligned to nature; drow - evil spider-worshipping splitters; avariel - rare winged elves; sea elves) but I didn't see a huge inherent difference between grey and high elves. In my campaign 'high elves' were the more refined, magic loving, art loving, highest elven rave, who tend to look down a little on everyone, but are mostly okay once you get to know them or if you earn their respect.
    GreySage

    Joined: Aug 03, 2001
    Posts: 3179
    From: Michigan

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    Mon Feb 01, 2021 6:28 am  
    Re: Heretic's view...

    Phalastar wrote:
    I've never really understood the separation of Grey and High elves.


    They're loosely inspired by Tolkien's Sindar and Noldor.
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Nov 11, 2003
    Posts: 143
    From: The Nexus

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    Thu Feb 04, 2021 11:20 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    I recall that Thiondar's Legacy, from Dungeon Magazine #30, included a history of the Grey Elves and their founding, which was a separating from the High Elves. Though it wasn't set in Greyhawk, specifically, it seemed aimed mainly at this setting.

    SirXaris


    It would have been ... Greyhawk was the only setting when that was published.

    I'll have to check that article out again, though.
    Master Greytalker

    Joined: May 12, 2005
    Posts: 873
    From: Woonsocket, RI, USA

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    Sat Feb 06, 2021 7:14 am  

    Theala_Sildorian wrote:
    SirXaris wrote:
    I recall that Thiondar's Legacy, from Dungeon Magazine #30, included a history of the Grey Elves and their founding, which was a separating from the High Elves. Though it wasn't set in Greyhawk, specifically, it seemed aimed mainly at this setting.

    SirXaris


    It would have been ... Greyhawk was the only setting when that was published.

    I'll have to check that article out again, though.

    You may be thinking of DRAGON #30. DUNGEON #30 was already in the 2E era (July/August 1991) and publishing adventures for Greyhawk, Forgotten Realms, Dragonlance, and even Spelljammer.
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Jun 16, 2003
    Posts: 143
    From: Calgary, AB, Canada

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    Sun Feb 07, 2021 2:58 pm  

    DMPrata wrote:
    Theala_Sildorian wrote:
    SirXaris wrote:
    I recall that Thiondar's Legacy, from Dungeon Magazine #30, included a history of the Grey Elves and their founding, which was a separating from the High Elves. Though it wasn't set in Greyhawk, specifically, it seemed aimed mainly at this setting.

    SirXaris


    It would have been ... Greyhawk was the only setting when that was published.

    I'll have to check that article out again, though.

    You may be thinking of DRAGON #30. DUNGEON #30 was already in the 2E era (July/August 1991) and publishing adventures for Greyhawk, Forgotten Realms, Dragonlance, and even Spelljammer.


    I just double checked. "Thiondar's Legacy" is indeed in Dungeon #30, not Dragon. It's an adventure, and the cryptic bits of elvish history Sir Xaris referred to are background to the scenario.
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