Elf: Homo Decorus
“Elves are a very ancient human-like race. They have a tall and beautiful figure. In former days they travelled all over Tibia, now they have retreated to an area in the north of Tibia where they live in dwellings made out of flourishing trees. Some of them are quite hospitable, but others are very suspicious towards any intruder and will try to repel him using their bows. Having a long history, the Elves are very skilled in magic, and almost every Elf knows some spells.”
From the Tibia Library
The elves have a very long and rich history. They were created by the Gods as a sort of counterattack agains the abominations created by Urgith, known as the Undeath. The Gods created many races, trying to withstand the growing Undead threat. Most of these races perished and added to the ever growing corpse pile, which was then infused with unholy magic by Urgith, thus adding to the ever growing Undeath legion. Only two of those races, commonly known as the Ancients, survived this catastrophical era, which would be remembered as the Corpse War. They were the Elves and the Dwarves, two completely different entities. Although they worked togather during those turbulent times, their paths would cross eachother many times in the future, sometimes with bloody wars as the result.
To escape from certain annihilation, these two remaining Ancients went their own way. The Dwarves, skilled in crafts and tough and hard as rock itself, fled underground, carving and digging enourmous halls beneath the earth. That is how Kazordoon was created. Later, in less life-threatening times, they would built the mines to provide their blacksmiths with the precious ore they require. The Elves, on the other hand, turned their hopes towards the vast forests, where they built havens of peace and safety. Camouflaged huts and houses where constructed around, in and through the mighty trees. As the Elves, as no other race, where able to live in perfect harmony with their surroundings and the environment, mother Nature willingly protected and shielded them from Urgith’s terrible legions. Although united in one cause, after the Corpse War the Elves were separated in different castes, which all went their own ways. These different castes will be discussed later.
Physical and other characteristics
The Elves belong undisputable to one of the most beautiful races. There seemingly fragile bodies make them very resilient and also very fast runners. Especially the rangers of the Elven kind are well respected for their excellent speed in combat. Other well known characteristics are of course the pointy ears and cateyes. These however bare no significant meaning for the Elves themselves. It even seems they are able to manipulate the appearance of their own siblings before birth. By using a sofisticated form of “Dream Magic”, Elven parents are able to change certain characteristics of their unborn child, such as: color of the hair, eyes and even gender. Although this might make a brilliant technique to make their kind suitable for war and combat, it is used more often for aesthetical reasons. Although the knowledge of this form of magic is mostly lost, the use of the Dream Magic is somewhat natural to the Elves. They use it instinctivally and see it as a “gift” from the Gods.
Another significant characteristic of the Elves, although not physical, is the Elven name. The use and construction of their names is well explained in a book that can be find in Ab'dendriel’s library:
Elven names are chosen in adulthood. Until they acquire a name, elves are called 'son/daughter of ___' usually naming the parent with the same gender. Upon reaching adulthood, the young elf gets his first name, divined by the elders who know him in dreams. It is merely a single name, a description of the elf in the elven tongue. Usually elves love to add a translation of their name which is often mistaken for a second name by other races. Since the elven language is far more complicated and has thousands of nuances, often elves with the same 'second name' have a different first name, confusing the other races even more.
Elves are known to live in forests, where they built aesthetic wonders that still amaze human architects. The most wellknown Elven community is located north of Tibia, in the beautiful town of Ab’dendriel. The name of the city is believed to come from the ancient word "déndron", which means "tree". It used to be a trading post, but was built into a true city by a small group of wise Elves, whose magically hidden settlement was lost and destroyed due to the failure of its protecting magic which isolated it from the rest of the world. Ab’dendriel truly is a magnificant sight with its beautiful treehouses, green environment and countless flowers. It’s an existing world wonder, something the Elves are still proud about and for a good reason.
However, not all Elves are as in love with Ab’dendriel as most of their kind. A group of nomadic Elves that decided to settle down, built Shadowthorn, south of Venore. It’s well protected by a natural wall of thorny vines. It is believed the Teshial, a lost caste of Elves that invented the so-called “Dream Walking” used Shadowthorn the start their dreampaths. This however is impossible to proof. What is sure to be true is that the settlement is just as vivid and of equal importance as Ab’dendriel for the Elven kind.
Ways of war
As the Elves are a peaceful race, not much can be said about their ways of war. But it is commonly known the Elves are unmatchably skilled with the bow, especially the religient Elf Scouts. One caste of the Elves, the Cenath, are also great wielders of magic. Known as Arcanists, these Elves have a great knowledge of both offensive and defensive spells. They’re the only of their kind that have knowledge of healing magic. The conclusion that has to be taken is that, although they are not as organised as the humans and although not as warlike as the orcs, the Elves are not to be underestimated. They combination of the excellent ranged tactics of their Scouts and the lethal spells of the Arcanists make them strong fighers indeed.
If the Elves have one weakness, then it’s the fact they are seperated. In the history of the race, many Castes were founded and were extincted. Today, only three Castes remain: the Deraisim, Cenath and Kuridai. A book from the immense library in Ab’dendriel states this about the Castes:
“The Kuridai caste lives in caves beneath the surface and they are the workers.
The Deraisim caste lives on the ground and are great hunters and farmers.
The Cenath caste lives on the heights of the trees and are great wielders of magic.”
According to this interpretation of the Castes, the normal Elves belong to the Kuridai, the Elf Scouts belong to the Deraisim and the Arcanists are members of the Cenath. However, as the three types of Elves are often seen togather, these interpretation might not be as correct as is believed. The distinction of these three Castes seem to ly in their interpretation of lifestyle.
The Deraisim used to be nomadic Elves after becoming homeless due to the war. When the war over, most families of the Caste decided to settle down and now live in Ab’dendriel togather with the other Castes. Some families however refused to settle down and formed a seperated group, known as the Abdaisim. It is strange however, that the Elves that decided to remain nomadic took a new name, as it is normally those who break off the original tribe, that take a new name.
The Cenath, being the most skilled with magic, built themselves a hidden valley, protected by magic and isolated from everyone else. They live luxuriously thanks to their sophisticated magic. However, when magic barriars of the valley failed, their homes were destroyed and they were forced to live togather with their brethren, who they originally viewed as barbaric. It was the Cenath who rebuilt a small trading post into the Ab’dendriel we know today.
The Kuridai are the a very distinctive Caste. During the Corpse War, the took refuge in a volcanic area, inhabited by fearsome creatures. They were forced to live underground and adapted well to this new environment. They are smaller and paler than their brethren who live above the ground. Today, they also live in Ab’dendriel but prefer to live and work underground.
There are also two lost Elven Castes: The Teshial and the Chelabdil. Not much is known about the Chelabdil, only one book contains some useful information:
“Puldraks wisdom about elves Pt. 5
The 5th elven cultural group are the Chelabdil. There role in the war and their fate is yet unclear, but they have few contact with the other elven casts. They are usually a bit taller and stronger than elves of the other races, and there skin is silvery-white or in blue to greenish tones. Their eyes are often pale blue or green, sometimes a faint yellow. They have long black hair, or sometimes dark brown. They seem to live nowadays in the region northwest of Carlin and are seen quite often there. They have the keenest eyes of the elves, and the weapons of their choice are spears, knives and sometimes the short bow. They are fine hunters and sometimes trade furs, but the main part of their life remains yet uncertain.”
Even more mysterieus are the Teshial. These mythical Elves were amazingly skilled in illusionary magic, making them able to change their appearances, not only of their unborn children. During the war, they invented the Dream Magic. Through meditation, they were able to contruct paths in their dreams, making them able to travel all over the globe, without leaving a trace. Although the Teshial Caste is now lost, their knowledge of the Dream Magic was inherited by the Knightmare Knights, which developped the Dream paths even further and built in defensive systems.
The Elven language is just as complex as the human language, maybe even more complicated. As for now, not much is known about this language. However, some words are used so frequent that we managed to decipher their meaning:
Ashari - Hi
Asha Thrazi – Goodbye
It is also believed the Elven language was built to carry their magic. Consequently, the deeper secrets of the magic of Teshial can only be discovered by those that known how to speak their language. As the Elves are masters of poetry, many believe their poems are mighty carriers of protective magic. Some strong believers even claim that these poems contain unknown spells and strong magic, unvisible for the earthy human minds.
Like most of the elder races, the Elves feel left behind by the Gods. Frustrated by this unfairness, they worship the Gods, except perhaps for Crunor, which they call the “Treefather”. Many of the Elves today prefer to pray to the raw elemental powers of earth and air. Especially the Kuridai Caste the earth religion is most prominent. Their prayers, complicated wonders of language, are believed to be enchantings or even summonings of the elemental powers of earth.
It is also believed by the Elves that in their rich history, seven Elven lords obtained the title of Celestial Paladins, thus rising to status comparable to that of the Gods. Which one of them is worshipped is a very personal matter for the Elves, although strongly influenced by the Caste they live in. Most of the time, one family worship one of the lords, completely ignoring the others.
Mortiur - the ravager, prominent for some sects. The avenger, merciless against friend, foe and himself
Nera - the lady of spring (flowers, growth), completely replacing Crunor for some elves.
Dseyvar - the sworddancer, responsible for the grace of the Elven warriors who have to be graceful not chivalrous.
Priyla - the daughter of the stars, mystery and magic
Krynierr - the silver tongue, poetry, love and music
Azmoda - the veiled one, mysterious figure. Mistress of schemes, cunning and deception
Evicor - the wanderer. Master of the hunt, the explorer
Strange teleports can be seen in Shadowthorn's central tower. Some scholars believe this is where the dream paths started.
Some Elven scholars believe the Knightmare Knights didn’t inherit the Dream Magic of the Teshail, but stole it from them.
Evicor, who is worshipped the most by Elf Scouts (“Evicor – guide my arrow”), is believed to be still present in Tibia at this moment. Some Elves think he took a new name and is now known as Dharalion. This however is most onlogical, since Dharalion sympathizes more with the Arcanists than with the Scouts.
The Elves of Shadowthorn are known to be able to tame wild dragons and keep them in underground caves. Why they decided to tame them is unsure. Maybe they need the dragon’s raw magic for mysterious purposes.