Religion in Feyworld
Faiths of Feyworld
- 1 Faiths of Feyworld
- 2 Cosmology
- 3 Religion in Daily Life
- 4 Deities
- 4.1 Descriptive Info
- 4.2 Spiritual Info
- 4.3 Game Info
- 4.4 Descriptive Information
- 4.5 Religion
- 4.6 Priesthood
- 4.7 Deity Information Table
- 4.8 List of Deities
- 4.8.1 Abaris
- 4.8.2 Adrasteia
- 4.8.3 Alcina
- 4.8.4 Alcyoneus
- 4.8.5 Alecto
- 4.8.6 Amphitritus
- 4.8.7 Aridnus
- 4.8.8 Baelthor
- 4.8.9 Bellona
- 4.8.10 Betshaba
- 4.8.11 Britomaris
- 4.8.12 Cardena
- 4.8.13 Cebren
- 4.8.14 Clementia
- 4.8.15 Cottus
- 4.8.16 Cthos
- 4.8.17 Dagon
- 4.8.18 Drames
- 4.8.19 Empusa
- 4.8.20 Enosigaois
- 4.8.21 Epimetheus
- 4.8.22 Erato
- 4.8.23 Evander
- 4.8.24 Faunaros
- 4.8.25 Fides
- 4.8.26 Fraus
- 4.8.27 Furinus
- 4.8.28 Galea
- 4.8.29 Gyges
- 4.8.30 Himere
- 4.8.31 Hypnos
- 4.8.32 Innus
- 4.8.33 Kratos
- 4.8.34 Ladon
- 4.8.35 Laestrygones
- 4.8.36 Luna
- 4.8.37 Maelphegor
- 4.8.38 Majestas
- 4.8.39 Mania
- 4.8.40 Megarea
- 4.8.41 Meliboea
- 4.8.42 Melpomene
- 4.8.43 Minos
- 4.8.44 Mormo
- 4.8.45 Mulciber
- 4.8.46 Nelestrix
- 4.8.47 Ophion
- 4.8.48 Orchus
- 4.8.49 Orestea
- 4.8.50 Orthus
- 4.8.51 Paelemona
- 4.8.52 Pavor
- 4.8.53 Pelactere
- 4.8.54 Phemos
- 4.8.55 Phlegethon
- 4.8.56 Picus
- 4.8.57 Podalirius
- 4.8.58 Podarge
- 4.8.59 Polydorus
- 4.8.60 Pothos
- 4.8.61 Ptharos
- 4.8.62 Ruminus
- 4.8.63 Sarpedon
- 4.8.64 Selene
- 4.8.65 Stheno
- 4.8.66 Taltos
- 4.8.67 Taygete
- 4.8.68 Tempus
- 4.8.69 Terpsichore
- 4.8.70 Tethys
- 4.8.71 Thalia
- 4.8.72 Thallos
- 4.8.73 Thanatos
- 4.8.74 Thea
- 4.8.75 Themis
- 4.8.76 Thryope
- 4.8.77 Tisiphone
- 4.8.78 Veritas
- 4.8.79 Virtus
- 4.8.80 Vitulus
- 4.8.81 Vortumnus
- 4.8.82 Zelos
- 4.8.83 Zephyrus
There are eight major faiths in the known world, though all but two agree on how the world was created and by whom. The main differences between the faiths are mainly focused on what happened (or didn't happen), in the millennia after the creation of the world or else the reasons the world was created in the first place. Though religious wars between the faithful of specific deities are relatively common, war over differing faiths tends to be rare. The notable exception is the irreconcilable differences between the Imperial Ecclesia and the Koramian Heresy, with both sides bent, sometimes martially so, on eradicating the other.
The Aebasan Orthodoxy is one of the three dominant human faiths and arguably the largest of the three, comparable only to the Imperial Ecclesia in numbers of worshipers. The Aebasan faith is primarily practiced across the breadth of the continent of Gallorea, though most High Temples are located among the cities of Aebasa. The central theological difference between the Aebasan Orthodoxy is that, some time during the 2nd Age of Man, Lord Ptharos stepped down as King of the Gods because he realized his own selfishness and tyranny had resulted in great hardship on Creation itself. He was replaced by the Celestial Council, an essentially democratic governing body of the gods, which he remains as an adviser to. As a result, democratic governments and thought are much more dominant on Gallorea than on either Aurea or Duria. Within the Aebasan Orthodoxy, Phlegethon (god of tyranny) is the primary Adversary, with Dagon reduced to the role of an almost comical trickster-god.
Animism is the belief that all things, even rivers and mountains, possess a spirit that can be communicated with and from which a wise or knowledgeable person can draw power from those spirits. Animism is relatively rare in Feyworld, typically practiced only by some humanoid tribes. Ancient legends suggest that there were animists among primitive humans, but most, if not all, human tribes converted to the Tuatha de Dannan during the Second Age of Man. Animists, typically shamans, draw on Nature magic, so it is generally presumed to be the same magical force that druids and rangers draw on, though in a substantially diluted form.
Some scholars have postulated that some dragons may hold animist beliefs and draw power from Nature through animism. Others point out that dragons are more akin to the spirits shamans call on rather than shamans themselves.
"Never ask an Elf about religion" is a common saying among humans that has no small amount of truth to it. Historically, the elves have been extremely private about religion, to the point of becoming violent towards those who inquire too deeply and hunting down those who reveal their secrets. That said, late in the Third Age of Man, a tome authored by a half-elf named Mandrake of the Spire made its way to Paeldain, in Koramia, that detailed the secrets of the elven faith. Though most of that information is still generally unknown, some of the secrets have leaked out. The most important of those secrets, it is believed, is that the elves know the secret pathways to Apotheosis, taught to them by the Tuatha de Dannan in the middle of the First Age of Man over six millennia ago. Though the Tuatha themselves initially served as patrons of the elves, as more elves ascended to the ranks of godhood, the Tuatha became less and less influential until finally fading from the elven faith altogether.
Though it is generally believed that all elves now follow the secretive elven pantheon, there are rumors of some pockets of elven civilization that did not receive the gifts of the Tuatha and never received their teachings. The names of the elven deities are unknown outside elven lands and, indeed, those who inquire too deeply into such matters are still usually met with cold disdain, at best.
The Imperial Ecclesia (or simply "The Church") is one of the three dominant human faiths and arguably the largest of the three, comparable only to the Aebasan Orthodoxy in numbers of worshipers. Ironically, the Imperial Ecclesia is based more closely on the oldest human faith of the First Age of Man, unfettered by subsequent revelations that have lead to the three-way schism between the three dominant human faiths. According to the Imperial Ecclesia, Lord Ptharos is still seated on his throne as King of the Gods, doling out his beneficence with supreme wisdom and generosity. Dagon is the chief Adversary, continually trying to destroy creation in a jealous rage at the beauty of creation.
The Imperial Ecclesia is predominant on the continent of Aurea and was predominant in the Imperial colonies on the continent of Duria prior to the rise of the Koramian Heresy. At the dawn of the Fourth Age of Man, only Cambrecia still holds to the Imperial Ecclesia on Duria and even that hold is tenuous at best. High Temples were once primarily based in Zeth, the capital of the Great Empire, with the Emperor as the mortal voice of the unified faith, but with the dissolution of the Empire, much of the former power of the Ecclesia has shattered as various churches chose their own path in church hierarchy.
The Koramian Heresy rose in the Third Age of Man after the discovery of a flying ship, later called the Glorious Galleon, by Saint Garimund of Ryard in the then-Imperial colony of Simmeria. Inside this ship the boy found a book, called the Koram, which revealed that Lord Ptharos had long ago stepped down as King of the Gods and appointed Vortumnus, god of chivalry and honor, as his replacement. The Koramian faith shares the concept of Ptharos stepping down as King of the Gods with the Aebasan Orthodoxy, but the two faiths disagree on what transpired thereafter.
The Koramian Heresy is dominant on the continent of Duria, though the Narbonnaise of Aurea also took up the faith during the chaos of the close of the Third Age of Man. Though the Church of Vortumnus is based in Paeldain, the capital of Koramia, few of the other Churches that subscribe to the Koramian Heresy have a central hierarchy or High Temple that leads the religion on Duria, in stark contrast to the rigid hierarchies of the Imperial Ecclesia of the Third Age of Man.
The orcs, once a unified culture that stretched the width and breadth of the Known World, are peculiar in that, though they do not deny that Lord Ptharos and the Triad created the world, they believe that the purpose to creation was, essentially, to test the mettle of the various sentient races that were created to populate it. Their belief is that the world will end in a great, apocalyptic war, wherein all the races will be forced to compete in battle for supremacy. The race that succeeds will dominate the new world in peace and harmony. The orcs intend to be that race.
Though this philosophy is generally known by scholars outside the orcish tribes, what is often not realized is that the orcs pray to one god as their leader and savior in the Final War: Darcingetorix the dragon. While most dragons are considered to be so powerful as to be forces of nature itself, Darcingetorix is the only dragon known to be worshiped as a god. That said, Darcingetorix demands no hierarchy or priesthood, though there are some rumors of actual clerics among the orcs. He only demands that orcs continue to hone their skills at battle and practice for the Final War, so that they may destroy all the other races and finally live in peace and harmony in their eternal reward.
Tuatha de Dannan
The worshippers of the Tuatha do not deny the existence of the Old Gods, but claim that the Tuatha were human philosophers who discovered the secret to immortality and deital power sometime during the First Age of Man. The initial group of humans who discovered the secret, lead by a woman named Danu, then spanned the world trying to find a people they considered ready to learn the paths to enlightenment. After many adventures, during which they revealed the secret to some particularly impressive humans, they finally discovered the elves. Believing the elves long-lived enough to truly understand and undertake the paths of enlightenment as a culture, they passed on their secret, which lead to the rise of the Elven Apotheism. Somewhere during their travels, the Tuatha became associated with a sect of naturalists called the druids. Though the Tuatha de Dannan have no clerics, the druids have essentially become their spiritual leaders, while bards became the lore-keepers of the faith.
Worship of the Tuatha became almost universal after the fall of the First Age of Man, when the Old Gods withdrew their blessings from their priesthoods. At the dawn of the Second Age of Man, one of the original philosophers who discovered the Secret, Math Mathonwy, withdrew from the Tuatha with plans to share the secret with all of humanity. Certain that humanity could not handle the secrets of immortality and, more importantly, deital power, the rest of the Tuatha rose against Math and, after a war that lasted over four hundred years, finally defeated Math and his followers. The Tuatha withdrew to a location somewhere in the world still secret, an event which resulted in the conclusion of the Second Age of Man. The Tuatha eventually withdrew from the world altogether as the Old Gods reasserted their dominion over the world at the start of the Third Age of Man. The Tuatha were remembered only in remote, primitive regions in the world and generally discarded as ignorant legend by most scholars.
During the waning years of the Third Age of Man, the Tuatha again began to influence events in the mortal realm. It is believed by some that they directly influenced the events of the Mage War and worked to bring together the Dragonknights who were instrumental in defeating the forces of the Mage King. When the Old Gods again receded during the last Dark Age, the druids began to move from their remote enclaves to again give judgment in the traditions of the Tuatha and the Bards began to retell the old stories of the Tuatha. At the dawn of the Fourth Age of Man, however, the Old Gods returned and again granted power to their clerics.
It remains to be seen if the Tautha's druids and the Old Gods clerics can coexist. There has never been an Age where one or the other was not dominant.
The faith of the Valtaan is unique in that, on the surface, it seems to have sprung whole-cloth among the Valtang without any influence from more traditional Triadic faiths. Scholars point out, however, that the Valtang use dwarven runes for writing, so they must have had some contact with the rest of the world and those who believe in the Triad in ancient times. Under the surface, however, many scholars believe that the Valtang actually do worship the Triadic gods but somehow lost access to most of the stories, apocrypha and holy books over the centuries and came up with their own stories based on a combination of a collective memory of the gods and acts by mortal kings and heroes.
The Valtang gods are generally bellicose and larger than life. They promote physical conflict and war as a means to spiritual reward over peace and scholastic, despite their chief god having given his eye to learn knowledge of the world. If the Valtang have clerics, none have been seen. Certainly, it is believed that they have some religious leadership, but as these men (or women) do not join in on raids and have not settled in regions the Valtang have conquered, they are as much a mystery as the origin of the faith itself.
Religion in Daily Life
When an infant is first born into the world, their parents or guardians have seven days to name the child. Typically, the parents will invite family and close friends to the Naming, including two unrelated individuals (both to the child and to one another) to serve as Compater and Commater, the child’s spiritual mentors who agree to raise the child should both natural parents die before they reach adulthood. The Naming takes place at a Temple to Alcyoneus the Yul, where it is readily available, or at the local Parish Temple regardless of deity if not. For this reason, Hospitals of Taygete the Bringer, goddess of childbirth often include an attached Temple to the Yul or, at least, a shrine that can be used for Naming ceremonies. At this ceremony, the child’s name is announced and offerings of dill are burned to Alyconeus to see the child grow healthy and hale. The Compater and Commater then swear an oath to their own patron deities to see to the child’s spiritual development and swear to adopt them should both parents die before the child reaches the age of majority. Once the Naming is complete, an infant is considered a “person” with a soul and certain (very limited) rights. An infant who is stillborn or dies prior to their Naming is not considered to possess a soul and, therefore, not accorded the usual burial rites. Indeed, most stillborn infants are cremated and the ashes disposed of unceremoniously (those parents who insist on going through a Naming ceremony for a stillborn child are generally considered to be inappropriately emotional, though there are no legal or religious sanctions for doing so).
Those infants who are born without undergoing a Naming ceremony are believed to become the province of Themis, God of Mischief, who encourages the infant to be troublesome and irreverent to authority. Even if the Naming takes place, the parents of a child who grows to be particularly vile or rebellious are presumed to have angered Alcyoneus in some way, leaving the child to the influence of Themis.
Soon after the Naming ceremony (if not during), the nearest Temple of Veritas the Heartbinder or Tempus Hoarbeard (or both!) is notified of the time and day of birth (either in writing or by someone chosen to deliver the information under oath).
Prior to the age of Dedication (around thirteen for boys, twelve for girls), children are assumed not to be capable of independent decision and, therefore, immune from the tallies of virtue and vice by Cthos. Once they have reached the appropriate age, the child is brought before a local Parish Priest and he asks the child what deity he chooses as his Patron. Though his parents may be present for the ceremony, they are not permitted to speak for the child or urge him on in any way, so most priests prefer to conduct this part of the ceremony in private. If the child chooses to respect all the gods equally (or chooses no Patron Deity), he is declared then and there by the Priest to the child’s parents and no further ceremony is necessary: the child is now considered an adult and responsible for his or her own actions.
If the child does choose a Patron Deity, the parents are then expected to take him or her to a Temple of that deity for the appropriate Rite of Dedication within a year and a day (and woe to parents whose child chooses an uncommon or proscribed deity in their nation). The Rite of Dedication varies wildly from deity to deity, but often includes some test of the child’s devotion to the deity or a skill considered particularly devout by the Church. For example, a child who chooses to dedicate himself to Betshaba the Wavequeen must show some skill at tying knots, while a child undergoing the Rite of Dedication to Kratos Steelhand must best a peer undergoing Dedication in physical combat (usually wrestling). Once the child has satisfied the attending Priest, he is officially accepted into the Church of that deity and is considered an adult.
Upon Dedication, the child may choose a new name or secondary name for themselves (or, in some Churches, have one chosen for them) and now has the right to use a surname. Unlike their given name, the surname may vary depending on circumstance or occupation throughout life, particularly if the person is of common birth. Bellatores are expected to use the name of their noble house as a surname. Oratores may choose to use a surname, particularly Low Clergy, but are also expected to use ‘of’ followed by their deity’s name (or a prominent demigods in service to their Patron Deity).
Children who do not undergo Dedication for any reason within a year and a day of coming of age are considered to be a Theist, which may restrict their access to various services and rites in various Churches, though rarely does it result in penalty or apostasy (unless, of course, they later commit a religious crime in the eyes of that Church worthy of such a penalty).
Throughout adulthood, a person may choose to change their Patron Deity, undergoing a new Rite of Dedication after close examination by a priest of the new Church (and, in some cases, permission from the Church of their previous Patron Deity). Second and subsequent Rites of Dedication are often more severe for such an adult than it would be for a child; someone choosing Kratos as their new Patron Deity will at least be required to win a fight with edged weapons and may be required to fight to the death with a fellow Dedicant. Upon passage of a new Rite of Dedication, the adult is considered spiritually cleansed of their previous life and almost always takes on a new name to symbolize this change. Some secular governments even consider passage of a Rite of Dedication to cleanse the individual of previous secular crimes, usually when the Rite of Dedication was conducted to induct the individual into the Church of the nation’s Patron Deity.
Once the Rite of Dedication is complete, the nearest Temple of Veritas the Heartbinder or Tempus Hoarbeard is notified of the name of the Dedicant (including their previous name if they are already an adult), their residence and, if a Patron Deity was chosen, the Temple to which they are considered a member.
Courtship and Betrothal
Courtship rituals vary wildly across Baltheron, from Church to Church, region to region and even village to village. That said, there are some commonalities, particularly among those people influenced by the domination of the Great Empire. The courtship process itself falls generically under the auspices of Erato the Redheart, God of Love, though most Churches have their own courtship procedures conducted in conjunction with Eratan traditions or supplanting them entirely.
Courtship among nobility and those wealthy craftsmen who try to emulate them tends to be a highly ritualistic affair in most regions. Legally, a father (or widowed mother) has the legal right to accept or deny a potential marriage of his child and betrothal is common practice, used to cement political and mercantile alliances alike. In most human regions, a father is not allowed to betroth a child until they have completed the Rite of Dedication. Typically, a betrothal is entered into as part of a larger treaty or agreement between the fathers of the potential groom and bride, with a date set, conditions of the dowry detailed (including whether and how the husband may make use of the dowry) and other associated agreements settled upon. In some cultures, it is appropriate for a groom and bride-to-be to meet prior to the formal signing of such a betrothal, but more conservative regions tend to find this unnecessarily sentimental. Under Imperial law, marriage is a contract like any other and love between the couple is considered secondary, where it is considered at all. That said, the vast majority of Imperial faiths will not conduct a marriage if both bride and groom do not give consent, though if one of the couple does give consent and the other does not, the father of the former may sue the latter for breach of contract.
In the past century, particularly in Narbonne and those cultures influenced by them, this separation of love and marriage among the nobility has lead to the concept of Courtly Love. Ideally, Courtly Love essentially includes all aspects of courtship except for actual sex (though, in practice, it often crosses that line). Courtly Love is particularly popular among worshipers of Vortumnus the Glorious, who are prohibited from extra-marital sex and generally discouraged from sex outside of the need for procreation. More than a few troubadours sing tales of young knights who fall hopelessly in love with another man’s wife and either consummate that love and betray their liege or die tragically having never known the touch of their beloved. That Courtly Love can be expressed regardless of the gender of the two individuals involved has lead many to accuse the Narbonnais of habitual homosexuality (an accusation that is not entirely unwarranted… homosexuality, particularly between men, tends to be more accepted in Narbonne than in most regions).
Conversely, courtship among commoners tends to be substantially less structured and courtship is more often between two people who fall in love than not. Even slaves a measure of freedom in this regard and Masters who interfere with or try to force marriage on a couple are generally condemned by most Churches, particularly the Church of Ladon Stronghands. It is still traditional for the families to meet and the head of each household to sort out a dowry, but in the end, if a father refuses to allow his child to marry, there is really no legal recourse to prevent the marriage from taking place. Indeed, in most regions, a couple needn’t actually marry in a Church (particularly if they are both Theists) and are considered married after living together for a length of time (usually five to seven years). As with nobility, consent of both parties is required and, as an individual is not considered able to give full consent until after they have undergone the Rite of Dedication, minor may not wed.
Most celebratory holidays (as opposed to reverent or national holidays) include some means to encourage young men and women to mingle and begin or continue a courtship. In particular, St. Michael’s Day, a holiday in late summer dedicated to St. Michael the Archer, encourages young men and women to exchange heart-shaped wreaths with those they have a fondness for and are encouraged to confess any secret love to the object of their affection. While public displays of affection are frowned upon in most regions, private affection is rarely proscribed legally.
Sexual intercourse outside of marriage is discouraged even during courtship, particularly for women, and in some strict regions outright proscribed. Among the followers of Lord Ptharos, sex is reserved for procreation and, therefore, should be limited to marriage regardless of gender. Among other Churches, sex out of wedlock is generally viewed as something to be warned against or a minor sin for which atonement is relatively minor. On the other extreme are the worshipers of Selene the Vermillion, who view sex as an act of piety and encourage it as often as possible (except, ironically, for pay… prostitution is severely proscribed by the Church of Selene). In secular law, those found guilty of adultery are typically fined.
Marriage and Divorce
As with Courtship, marriage traditions vary wildly, even within the same culture. The marriage ceremony itself falls generally under the auspices of Fides the Oathbinder (and the patron deity of one or both of the people being married), while the state of marriage is the purview of Veritas the Heartbinder.
Regardless of social status, marriage is almost universally expected to be between a man and a woman, monogamous and carry the expectation of bearing offspring. There are some exceptions, of course. In regions dominated by Erato the Redheart, homosexual unions are possible, if very rare (and often not formally recognized by the state). Worshipers of Himere the Poet have relatively loose rules on monogamy (though rarely do they support outright bigamy). Those who follow Selene, the Vermillion, often avoid marriage altogether or, at most, prefer Common Law marriages. These arrangements, however, tend to be highly localized and are often not recognized under secular law.
The central significance of marriage under secular law in most regions influenced by Imperial Law concerns itself with inheritance and bearing offspring. In most regions, an adult child who is unwed when the head of the household dies may not inherit anything from his father’s estate (inheritance would be split between the widow (if any), the remaining married sons or the heads of household of his siblings’ homes). A man who is wed but has sired no children when his parent dies is entitled to only half a share of his inheritance. Of course, there are exceptions and variations to this… a child of noble blood may have his titled held by a regent until he is of the Age of Dedication, until he is wed or, rarely, when his first child is born. Needless to say, the male children of an ailing parent have a great deal of social pressure to get married and begin producing offspring, particularly among the nobility. The higher in status an individual is, the greater this social pressure becomes; nations have devolved into outright civil war when a sovereign proves themselves incapable of siring an heir.
The marriage ceremony itself is typically composed of five stages (though, again, specific traditions vary wildly):
- The Declaration: The groom and his family travel to the home of the bride and her family and both families formally greet one another, symbolizing the union of the two families. The bride and groom each declare their intent to marry and each announces that they are doing so willingly and without reservation. The two families enter the home of the bride’s family and break bread with them. In some regions, the groom’s family must bring food to share as well, though under strict Imperial tradition, the groom’s family is expected to feed the bride’s, symbolizing the bounty the groom and his family brings to the union. In very rare circumstances, such as when the bride is of higher station than the groom, only her family supplies the food for this meal (and it is often considered slightly emasculating to the groom and his family to do so). Traditionally, a drink of milk and honey is served at the Declaration meal to symbolize fertility and health for the new couple.
- The Sacrifice: After the Dedication meal, both families follow the bride and groom in a procession to the temple where the couple will Vow, carrying with them a sacrifice appropriate to the deity of the temple they will be married at. These processions can be brief, as when the bride’s home is down the lane from the temple, or very long… some noble marriage processions may take days for the wedding party to travel from the manor of the bride’s family to the temple where they are to say their vows. Upon arrival at Temple, the couple is expected to give sacrifice to both the deity under whom they will be wed and Fides the Oathbinder. Podalirius the Gnarled Man, god of agriculture, typically requires a sheaf of grains or other plant harvested in his name by the groom or both the groom and bride. Where Fides has exclusivity over the union (such as when two Theists are being wed), the couple each cut the other’s palm with a sharp blade and their mingled blood is poured into a censer, which is then burned. The sacrifice is almost always conducted on the steps of the temple or, at least, before the entrance and most temples have a raised censer or other apparatus appropriate for giving sacrifice during a wedding.
- The Vows: Once Sacrifice is given, the presiding priest will ask a series of questions to the bride and the groom in turn, appropriate to the focus of the deity he represents. Regardless of the moral questions asked, the priest will ask each directly to swear that each has come to marry with an open heart, under no coercion and willing. After accepting their vows, the priest may give a sermon related to marriage, during which all in attendance are expected to stand and be respectful of the proceedings, even if they do not consider the deity their patron. At the conclusion of the ceremony, the bride and then the groom will recite vows (either that they have written or specific to the deity) while giving one another some token to symbolize their union (rings and armbands are common). The priest will then conclude by asking those present to vow to support and defend the marriage they have witnessed. Needless to say, it is considered in poor taste not to make such a vow (and unlucky for the bride and groom).
- The Acknowledgment: Once the Vows are complete, guests who are not immediate family congratulate the newly-wed couple as they begin to move towards an area set up for the wedding feast, usually giving advice and small gifts to the couple as they proceed. Blessings from the elders of the community are particularly important and it is considered a grave slight not to invite a community elder to attend the Vows and Acknowledgment. In rural settings, ‘elders’ includes the eldest and most prominent members of the community, while among nobles it typically includes the nobles of the region or those associated with both families… in a royal wedding, every noble in the nation (and a few prominent ones from other nations) can expect to receive an invitation. It is absolutely essential that the noble to whom the groom (and, often, the bride’s family) owes fealty to be invited specifically. Gifts are only expected from those of higher station, so it is considered a major slight for a royal to receive a gift from anyone at their wedding. Typically, the noble to whom the groom owes fealty will gift the couple with the wedding feast. Once the bride and groom reach the wedding feast, they take their seats first (even before nobles of higher station) and eat and drink and dance well into the night. At some point during the wedding feast, the bride’s father presents the dowry to the new couple, listing off each piece of the dowry and, for personal objects, displaying each item for all present to see.
- Consummation: At some point during the wedding feast, the bride and groom are expect to steal away to consummate the marriage. In most regions, this is done discretely, but in some regions and faiths, the bride and groom are carried to their wedding bed by their guests and some of the elder women actually remain in the bedchamber to offer advice and cheer the couple on as they consummate their marriage.
Under secular, Imperial Law, the Vows and the Consummation are the only two stages of the wedding ceremony to be absolutely essential for a marriage to be considered legal.
Marriage is usually considered a sacred vow and, as such, is not casually dissolved. A marriage may be annulled (which is to state the original marriage contract was void) only if the bride is found to be pregnant at the time of marriage by someone else, the couple fail to consummate the marriage, either were not of the Age of Dedication when they wed, either was coerced into marriage (extraordinarily difficult to prove) or the couple was found to be closely related (typically, this is the immediate family… brother-sister or parent-child marriages are prohibited, even if the relationship was by adoption). In some regions, an annulment may be granted in situations where conception has not occurred after a specified period of time, usually a year and a day (even so, if it is known prior to the wedding that either party is unable to sire children, an annulment will not be granted for childlessness). Divorce is typically only possible in cases where one spouse attempted to kill another (mere beating is insufficient), a spouse is habitually unfaithful (usually, offspring resultant from their unfaithfulness must be produced as evidence) or through ‘apparent demise’ by one of the spouses (typically requiring a period of five to ten years during which no one has heard from the missing spouse). If a divorce or annulment is granted, the former wife is expected to return to the household of her father (if he is still alive) and may take her dowry with her (or the equivalent thereof… hence the importance of displaying the dowry to others during the Acknowledgment… they are potential witnesses!).
After a long life of service and labor, the aged generally may retire or enter the clergy as monachus. According to the Creed of Truth, the primary holy book of Lord Ptharos, a person is expected to work until they grow infirm or reach three score and ten years of age, after which they are expected to retire regardless of their health to make way for their children by retiring.
Typically, retiring is a secular, legal process by which the retiring person draws up a contract with their heirs (usually their children) where inheritance is passed on in return for a sometimes very specific pension to last the duration of the retiree’s life. For example, the son of a retired man may be contractually obligated to maintain a home for the retiree, provide food, a small bit of coin and a new set of clothing each season or each year. Essentially, the retiree is thereafter considered ‘deceased’ in terms of inheritance, though if the inheritor fails to live up to his end of the contract, the inheritance may be repossessed. The local lord who adjudicates the case, however, is motivated to instead charge a fine to the wayward inheritor and enforce the contract rather than have someone infirm or aged attempt to resume their feudal obligation. Retirement must be approved by the local lord and secular law usually only allows for retirement where a person is proven to be infirm or seventy years of age and has an inheritance to pass on. Without an inheritance to pass on, retirement is rarely permitted, though some particularly beneficent lieges may take on the pension of a retiree themselves, particularly for a common man who has served them faithfully throughout their life. Retirement is almost exclusively used by agricultural peasants and urban freemen; nobles rarely retire, though there are some situations (usually also involving infirmity) in which a noble may retire, becoming an adviser to their heir.
Alternatively, some choose to take up the cloth and enter the monachus in their old age. Each Church has their own method for becoming a monk, though even in martial sects the process is often easier for those entering the monachus as a means of retirement. Upon becoming a monk, the individual is considered ‘deceased’ in terms of inheritance and, in most regions and faiths, in terms of marriage as well. Essentially, becoming a monk requires the individual to ‘marry’ their god and this is usually the one socially-accepted means of achieving a divorce outside of extreme circumstances. It is not uncommon for a couple who reaches old age to both enter the monachus at different monasteries, living apart for the remainder of their lives. Unlike retirement, a person may become a monk at any time in their life, though a peasant who does so must pay chevage to his liege for permission to leave his service and any inheritors must pay heriot to the liege as if the monk was deceased. Most who chose to take up the cloth as monachus are wealthy freemen or nobles, in part because literacy is usually a requirement for becoming a monk and some churches require a sizable donation to ensure peasants and criminals are not taking up the cloth in an attempt to avoid their responsibilities.
When a person dies, it is believed that their soul becomes separated from the body but lingers near the body for up to three days in a state of confusion while awaiting the arrival of one of the Ishemud. The Ishemud, entital servants of Pavor Longshanks, god of travel, then guide a willing soul to the Palace of Nugarath to have their lives accounted and judged by Cthos the Doomsayer. During these three days, the mortal relatives or friends of the deceased hold a wake, during which the body is on display for family and visitors to pay respects and scripture appropriate to the patron deity of the deceased is read by a guardian (either a priest, a member of the family or member of the community who has volunteered for this sacred duty). The guardian also ensures no harm comes to the body, either by those seeking to pilfer jewelry or vermin seeking a meal. During the wake, all mirrors in a household are covered or removed, as it is believed that the soul may become distracted by the reflection therein and become trapped in the mortal realm as a ghost. On the third day of the wake, the body is taken to the grave and buried on consecrated ground as a ceremony appropriate to the patron deity of the deceased is conducted. Those believed to be damned, particularly criminals, are not buried on consecrated ground. It is believed that those who have committed particularly horrible deeds and have been executed for them are already under the sight of Cthos and the Ishemud have no difficulty finding them and dragging them before the Doomsayer for judgment. And, of course, the corrupted soul may damage or undo the consecration of the graveyard, if their deeds in life were sufficiently horrible. Once the body is buried the person’s shadow is released and, some believe, may then roam the world. To most humans, the shadow is seen as an entity distinct from the body, mind and soul. Lingering somewhere between light and darkness, a person’s shadow is deeply feared by undead, demons and some lycanthropes, which is one of the many reasons such creatures prefer to be active at night, when a person’s shadow is weaker or disappears altogether (as when in pitch darkness). The Path of Apotropaism relies heavily on this theory, with some rituals bolstering and reinforcing a shadow’s repugnance to creatures of darkness.
Every step of the funeral tradition is intended to avoid the very real threat of the deceased becoming undead, either rising from the grave to take vengeance on those it feels wronged it or wandering as a ghost, unable to pass on to their final judgment. Though becoming undead is relatively rare and the conditions under which it occurs are inconsistent, it is still the sacred duty of the family and community to ensure the deceased is handled respectfully and buried properly. And, of course, these traditions are self-serving as well… the family and community are often the first targets of a vengeful, restless ghost!
Upon arrival of the Ishemud, the soul of the departed must choose whether to pass on with them to their judgment or remain in the mortal world. Most souls choose to pass on, even those who fear judgment, but some few with strong emotions concerning unfinished business may remain, desperately trying to find a way to finish that business as an incorporeal entity. Most such ghosts linger in the Nether, a dreary, empty dimension of lost souls unable to pass on or who have been consigned to wait for entry into the afterlife by Cthos. To interact with the moral world as a ghost, a soul must be able to focus the strong emotions that prevented them from passing on. Most scholars who study such things believe it is easiest for a ghost to be seen repeating actions it considered significant in its mortal life. Moving small objects or making footfalls is believed to be more difficult and a full-on manifestation where the ghost speaks more difficult yet. The ability to interact with the mortal world and the length of time a ghost may manifest seems to be related to the depth of emotion and their experience as a ghost. This is why the freshly departed are rarely able to manifest, while ancient ghosts find it more easy to interact with the material realm. Of course, the study of ghosts and other undead tends to fall under the purview of Necromancy, an art that is prohibited in most lands, so most of the generally-known theories are by scholars who have little direct evidence or means to test these hypotheses.
A soul who has agreed to pass on with the Ishemud is brought to the Hall of Judgment in the Palace of Nugarath on Rhadamanthus, where they are brought before the silent gaze of Cthos the Doomsayer and, possibly, the spirits of departed ancestors of the deceased. The heart of the deceased is then weighed by Aridnus the Fair against the Light of Truth. If the heart is found to be weighed down by sin against the patron deity of the soul, the soul is sent to receive punishment in Tophet, to be tortured by demons for all eternity. If the heart is found to be light, the soul is sent to serve their patron deity in a manner appropriate to that deity. Some souls may have committed no great sin nor shown virtue in the eyes of their patron (or else have no patron at all and their lives were lived in such a way as to not attract the attention of a specific deity) and Cthos consigns them to the Nether to wait for a deity to accept them… often, it is believed, such souls never truly find peace. The departed ancestors present may speak for or against the soul of the departed and influence Cthos’ final decision on the soul’s destiny.
Regardless of what happens to the souls of the departed, the Imperials believe that some part of the departed soul is forever aware of the actions of their descendants and family members in the mortal realm and may reach out from the afterlife to subtly influence the fortunes of mortals who please them. Even an ancestor consigned to Tophet may become aware of a family member in the mortal realm, though typically their interactions with the mortal world are born more of rage and jealousy than to provide assistance to their mortal descedant. Of course, other faiths have their own traditions of what transpires after death. The Gaels believe the souls of mortals rejoin a ‘universal spirit,’ their identity and memories mingled in something of a spiritual soup, eventually to be reborn anew in the next generation; those who recall any of their previous life are considered to be strong-willed individuals meant for greatness. Among the Valtanni, it is believed that only those who die on the battlefield may enter the afterlife, where they fight one another in joyous battle during the day and drink in a great mead hall with the gods at night, only to fight again the following day. Dwarves believe their souls are brought directly to Baelthor the Stonehands for judgment and those who have acted properly are granted a place on the walls of the Stone Hall of Wuldagor to guard creation against the demons of Tophet for all eternity.
Animals, it is believed, do not possess souls but instead possess spirits. Their supernatural identity simply dissipates upon death and cannot return as a ghost (nor can animals be brought back from the dead, even by powerful Divine magic). Unfortunately, this theory doesn’t explain how animal ghosts have been reported, though they tend to be relatively rare and that they are usually the ghosts of domestic animals suggest that they are possibly manifestations created by mortals who treasured these animals in their mortal lives. The Gaels believe each animal’s spirit to return to a universal spirit of that animal, a sort of archetypal, universal animal spirit specific to each type of animal (the Gael’s also believe that animals have their own deities that cannot be comprehended by human minds).
Strangely, it appears that elves and orcs are possessed of spirits, not souls. They cannot return as ghosts and are not subject to judgment in the afterlife by the gods.
As a final note, most theologians consider the soul to be a separate entity from the mind and a person’s shadow. Some sentient undead, such as vampires, are believed to possess the mind of the departed, but are not still in possession of that individual’s mortal soul. Therefore, the actions of a vampire do not reflect on the judgment of its soul in the afterlife; this lack is also believed to be the reason that most sentient undead do not cast a shadow… without a soul, a person’s shadow does not remain with the body.
The Deities section lists the eighty-six deities of Feyworld along with their associated spheres of influence. Each deity is then detailed in its own entry. This section concerns itself with those entries, defining each category in turn.
Name and Sphere of Control: The most popular name of the deity appears at the top of each entry, followed by their most significant sphere of control. To the right of this lies a picture of one of the deity's symbols, most often the symbol used for that deity in the Empire.
Gender: All deities are either male or female in their primary aspect, though their gender may be different in lesser aspects. Gender isn't as significant to deities as it is to mortals, and most have little issue with appearing as a member of the opposite sex if it serves their purposes.
Avatars: This entry names the most significant Avatars of the deity, along with any titles significant to those Avatars. Most Avatars also serve as aliases for the deity in lands where their true name is unknown.
Consorts: This entry includes information on any mates or consorts of the deity.
Allies: Significant alliances that the deity observes with other deities and the Churches of those deities. If the listed deity is directly related to the deity being detailed (grandparent, parent, sibling or child), that information is provided as well.
Foes: Those deities and Churches that are diametrically opposed to the deity listed. This can manifest itself as simple distrust or may represent all out war between the Churches.
|Deital Rank and Power|
|Rank||Class or Type(s)||Number of Colleges|
|Greatest||Only Lord Ptharos and Dagon||6|
|Greater||Triadic and Inimicures||5|
|Major||Baelthoric, Betshaban, Ptharosian, Dagonian, Maelphegorian, Taltosian, Enosian||4|
|Intermediate||Iuvenes, Rulers of the Tuatha, Darcingetorix||3|
|Lesser||Members of the original Tuatha not also Rulers, the King of the Elven Deities||2|
|Minor||Some of the more significant members of the Tuatha and the Dukes of the Elven pantheon||2|
|Demigod||Some of the most recently ascended members of the Tuatha, significant members of the Elven pantheon||0|
|Quasideity||Most members of the Elven pantheon||0|
|Potency||The most recently ascended members of the Elven pantheon||0|
|Explanation of the Deity Rank and Power Table
Rank: This is a listing of the ranks of the deities, in descending order.
Class or Type(s): A listing of the Class (in the case of Imperial deities) or Type of deity typically associated with the appropriate Rank. Exceptions do exist.
Number of Colleges: This is the number of Colleges Divine pracitioners deriving power from the deity have access to.
Rank: The rank of the deity is a measure of its power within the hierarchy of the gods as well as a measure of its influence over the mortal world.
Nature: A general description of the deity's way of thinking and teachings, whether Ordered, Harmonious, Intermediate, Chaotic and Anarchistic. Ordered deities generally have strict rules of conduct and dictate exactly how they wish their followers to act. Harmonious deities leave more room for personal initiative and interpretation but still have a vested interest in having their followers work together. Intermediate deities are either disinterested in the conflict between social and individual constructs or believe that a balanced mix of the two is the best way to accomplish things. Chaotic deities tend to promote individual heroics and individual freedom, though they recognize the need of societies and laws to govern those societies. Anarchistic deities are interested only in the freedom of the individual, and tend to oppose governments, laws and anything else that constricts personal freedom.
Ethos: This category describes the general bent of the ethical bent of the deity, whether Baneful, Malign, Agathocacological, Benign or Benevolent. Baneful deities are the darkest, by far, and tend to be more interested in hate and destruction than anything else. Malign deities are dark and have a tendency to be anti-social, but they also tend to obey a moral code of conduct which is not completely at odds with society. Agathocacological deities are either uninterested in the contest between Good and Evil or pursue a balance between them. Benign deities have an interest in helping others, but are either too selfish to give of themselves fully or generally disinterested in fighting the forces of Darkness. Benevolent deities are opposed to the very existence of Evil and seek to stamp it out wherever it lay; these sorts of deities generally wish to see the world prosperous and happy.
Major Influence: The major concept, idea, or creative interest of the deity. With the exception of Earth, Air and Water, each deity has an individual attribute distinct from those of other deities in the pantheon.
Minor Influence(s): Associated ideas and attributes over which the deity has power. Other Concerns may overlap between deities, each having a slightly different spin on the same or similar concepts.
Domains: The Domains available to priests of the deity.
Favorite Weapon: The favored weapon of priests of the deity.
Spontaneous Casting: The spell priests of the deity receive as their spontaneous casting ability.
Description: This category describes the typical way in which the deity appears to his followers and in art associated with that deity. In the case of major avatars, descriptions of those are made available here as well.
Relics and Weapons: Any weapons or protective items associated with the deity, along with their names and powers, if necessary.
Dwelling Place: The abode and center of rulership for the deity and the plane of existence upon which this abode lies.
Servants: This entry describes the major Deital and supernatural powers which are often associated with or serve the deity listed. Often, these are sainted or damned individuals who have been granted a special place at the side of their deity, but important Archangels, Devils and other Supernatural beings who serve the deity are also listed. If the Church recognizes a specific title for individuals who are blessed with Supernatural power in the afterlife, these titles are listed with the individual's name.
Customs: This catch-all category describes the habits, rules and guidelines of the followers of the Deity, often focusing on the Priesthood (who usually have more strict guidelines to follow).
Taboos: Sins, proscribed activities and other religious offenses are described here, along with their associated punishments.
Symbols: This entry describes the holy symbol of the deity and any known variations of the symbol for different Sects and Orders. Furthermore, it details any gems, stones, metals and herbs sacred to the Deity or often used in practices of the Church. Numbers significant to the Deity are also covered here.
Holy Days: This section details the most significant Holy Days of the Deity, including the responsibilities and traditions that must be obeyed by the Priesthood and followers of the Deity.
Laity: The sorts of people often found in a typical congregation of the Deity, including professions, gender, size and anything else significant about the lay-people who worship the Deity as their patron.
Requirements for Priesthood: This section not only details what Attributes and Skills are necessary to take a Vow of Priestcraft, but also what is required of those seeking a Vow of Service. Furthermore, it details the requirements of any significant Sects or Orders dedicated to the Deity.
Garments: This category focuses on the clothing and apparel of the Priesthood, but may also detail what is appropriate for the worshiper to wear as well.
The Gods of Feyworld are varied in the extreme, and assume, as their sphere of influence, almost every aspect of human existence. It should be noted that these are the deities worshiped by the majority of the humans of Feyworld, and is not a definitive listing.
Some of the deities have entries that explain them much further. Those that do not are very much still in the works.
Deity Information Table
|Name||Primary Gender||Epithet||Rank||Nature||Ethos||Major Influence||Minor Influences||Colleges|
|Abaris||Female||The Enscribed||Intermediate||Ordered||Agathocacological||Magic||Research, learning, protection vs. insects, enchantment||Communication and Empathy, Knowledge, Making and Breaking, Protection and Warning|
|Adrasteia||Female||The Handmaiden||Major||Chaotic||Benign||Rivers and Streams||Travel (especially by river), fish, servants, irrigation||Animal, Food, Protection and Warning, Water, Weather|
|Alcina||Female||The Withered Hag||Major||Anarchistic||Baneful||Drought||Despair, Illusion||Fire, Illusion and Creation, Light and Darkness, Mind Control, Weather|
|Alcyoneus||Male||The Yul||Major||Chaotic||Benign||Youth||Innocence, Spring, Renewal and Toy-Making||Body Control, Earth, Healing, Making and Breaking, Movement|
|Alecto||Female||The Scourge||Major||Harmonious||Baneful||Pain||Secrets, torture||Body Control, Communication and Empathy, Fire, Knowledge, Necromantic|
|Amphitritus||Male||The Goldmiser||Major||Chaotic||Malign||Greed||Artifact-hunting, thievery||Air, Knowledge, Light and Darkness, Making and Breaking, Mind Control|
|Aridnus||Male||The Fair||Major||Harmonious||Agathocacological||Judgment||Measurements, Scibnery||Air, Communication and Empathy, Knowledge, Movement, Sound|
|Baelthor||Male||The Stonehands||Greater||Harmonious||Benevolent||Earth||Smithing, Justice, Dwarves, Strength, Construction||Body Control, Earth, Knowledge, Making and Breaking, Metal, Mind Control|
|Bellona||Female||The Collector||Major||Intermediate||Agathocacological||Wealth||Mercantilism, Gold||Earth, Making and Breaking, Metal, Mind Control, Movement|
|Betshaba||Female||The Wavequeen||Greater||Chaotic||Benevolent||Water||Oceans, witch-hunting||Animal, Communication and Empathy, Healing, Protection Warning, Water, Weather|
|Britomaris||Female||The Rogue||Major||Intermediate||Agathocacological||Thieves||Hardship, hidden trails, shadows, poverty||Body Control, Earth, Knowledge, Light and Darkness, Movement|
|Cardena||Female||The Whore||Major||Chaotic||Malign||Lust||Prostitutes, Rapists||Body Control, Earth, Illusion and Creation, Mind Control, Sound|
|Cebren||Male||The Piper||Major||Chaotic||Benign||Music||Criers, love, song||Communication and Empathy, Mind Control, Sound, Protection Warning, Water|
|Clementia||Female||The Dove||Major||Harmonious||Benevolent||Mercy||Healing, peace||Food, Healing, Knowledge, Protection and Warning, Water|
|Cottus||Male||The Archer||Major||Chaotic||Malign||Lightning||Archery and evocation||Air, Light and Darkness, Making and Breaking, Movement, Weather|
|Cthos||Male||The Doomsayer||Intermediate||Intermediate||Agathocacological||Death||The Underworld, executioners, assassins, secrets||Communication and Empathy, Knowledge, Light and Darkness, Necromantic|
|Dagon||Male||The Adversary||Greatest||Anarchistic||Baneful||Fire||Deserts, desert-beasts, injustice, opposition, rebellion, fratricide, evil||Animal, Fire, Gate, Light and Darkness, Mind Control, Weather|
|Drames||Female||The Many-Sheaved||Intermediate||Harmonious||Benign||Fertility||Agriculture, husbandry||Animal, Healing, Plant, Protection and Warning|
|Empusa||Female||Lady Death||Major||Chaotic||Malign||Poison||Assassins, spiders||Animal, Food, Light and Darkness, Movement, Water|
|Enosigaois||Male||The Vile Roarer||Greater||Chaotic||Malign||Earth||Rebellion, siegecraft, tyranny||Communication and Empathy, Earth, Making and Breaking, Machine, Movement, Protection and Warning|
|Epimetheus||Male||The Drowned Wyrm||Major||Chaotic||Malign||Floods||Destruction, fertility, renewal||Food, Healing, Making and Breaking, Water, Weather|
|Erato||Male||The Redheart||Intermediate||Chaotic||Agathocacological||Love||Enchantment, courtesans||Body Control, Communication and Empathy, Mind Control, Protection and Warning|
|Evander||Male||The Vaunted One||Major||Ordered||Benign||Gates||Engineering, iron, thresholds||Earth, Machine, Making and Breaking, Metal, Protection Warning|
|Faunaros||Male||The Mongrel||Major||Chaotic||Agathocacological||Hunting||Cooking, evocation, dogs||Animal, Earth, Fire, Food, Plant|
|Fides||Male||The Oathbinder||Intermediate||Ordered||Agathocacological||Oaths||Democracy, family, law, marriage||Communication and Empathy, Food, Knowledge, Movement|
|Fraus||Male||The Hyemal Lord||Major||Ordered||Baneful||Winter||Divination, ice, law||Communication and Empathy, Knowledge, Plant, Water, Weather|
|Furinus||Male||The Liberator||Intermediate||Chaotic||Agathocacological||Wine||Alcoholic spirits, grains, grapes, celebration, freedom, madness||Communication and Empathy, Food, Mind Control, Movement|
|Galea||Female||The Triumphant||Major||Intermediate||Agathocacological||Victory||Protection, swordsmithing, war||Air, Communication and Empathy, Enchantment (Weapons), Movement, Protection and Warning|
|Gyges||Male||The Herald||Major||Intermediate||Benign||Thunder||Heralds, scouting||Commuinication and Empathy, Earth, Movement, Protection Warning, Sound|
|Himere||Female||The Poet||Intermediate||Anarchistic||Agathocacological||Poetry||Song, love, music||Communication and Empathy, Illusion and Creation, Making Breaking, Sound|
|Hypnos||Female||The Phantasm||Intermediate||Chaotic||Benign||Dreams||Art, Divination, Illusion, Inspiration||Communication and Empthy, Illusion and Creation, Making Breaking, Mind Control|
|Innus||Male||The Shem||Major||Harmonious||Benign||Friendship||Commerce, partnership, protection||Communication and Empathy, Earth, Food, Healing, Light and Darkness|
|Kratos||Male||The Steelhand||Major||Harmonious||Malign||War||Courage, weaponsmithing, loyalty||Communication and Empathy, Enchantment (Weapon), Fire, Mind Control, Movement|
|Ladon||Male||Stronghands||Intermediate||Ordered||Agathocacological||Work||Abjuration, construction, poverty, slaves||Body Control, Machine, Making and Breaking, Protection Warning|
|Laestrygones||Male||The Healer||Intermediate||Intermediate||Benign||Health||Healing, medicine, science||Communication and Empathy, Healing, Knowledge, Machine|
|Luna||Female||The Horned Queen||Intermediate||Chaotic||Agathocacological||Moon||Madness, queens, shadows, werewolf hunting, women||Animal, Body Control, Light and Darkness, Mind Control|
|Maelphegor||Male||Crimson Wyrm||Greater||Chaotic||Baneful||Air||Madness, rape, revenge, storms||Air, Communication and Empathy, Illusion and Creation, Mind Control, Sound, Weather|
|Majestas||Female||The Lawgiver||Major||Intermediate||Benign||Law||Fairness, Investigation||Air, Communication and Empathy, Healing, Knowledge,Protection
|Mania||Female||The Half-Eyed||Major||Anarchistic||Malign||Madness||Divination, insight, inspiration, music, witchcraft||Air, Communication and Empthy, Gate, Mind Control, Sound|
|Megarea||Female||Greeneye||Major||Anarchistic||Malign||Jealousy||Adulterers, secrets, trickery||Air, Communication and Empathy, Illusion and Creation, Mind Control, Protection and Warning|
|Meliboea||Female||The Farseer||Intermediate||Anarchistic||Benevolent||Justice||None||Communication and Empathy, Mind Control, Movement, Protection
|Melpomene||Female||The Nymph Queen||Intermediate||Intermediate||Agathocacological||Clouds||Messengers, motherhood, transmutation and weather||Air, Communication and Empathy, Protection and Warning, Weather|
|Minos||Male||The Cockerel||Intermediate||Harmonious||Agathocacological||Commerce||Contracts, Mercantilism, Teamstering||Enchantment, Making and Breaking, Machine, Movement|
|Mormo||Male||The Deceiver||Major||Chaotic||Malign||Deception||Illusion, spycraft, transmutation||Body Control, Earth, Illusion and Creation, Mind Control, Movement|
|Mulciber||Male||The Forgemaster||Major||Harmonious||Agathocacological||Smithing||Childbirth, creation, invention, war||Earth, Fire, Healing, Enchantment, Metal|
|Nelestrix||Female||The Insect Queen||Major||Anarchistic||Baneful||Insects||Rats, Swamps||Air, Animal, Food, Weather, Water|
|Ophion||Male||Truthbearer||Intermediate||Harmonious||Benign||Sun||Courage, equestrians, messengers, sports, Summer, undead hunting||Body Control, Healing, Light and Darkness, Movement|
|Orchus||Male||Bluefeather||Intermediate||Anarchistic||Agathocacological||Luck||Adventure, gambling and courtesans||Body Control, Knowledge, Movement, Protection and Warning|
|Orestea||Female||The Chalice||Major||Chaotic||Benign||Rain||Absolution, liberty, life||Healing, Mind Control, Movement, Water, Weather|
|Orthus||Male||Stormrider||Major||Chaotic||Malign||Storms||Oceans and war||Light and Darkness, Machine, Making and Breaking, Water, Weather|
|Paelemona||Female||The Spinner||Major||Intermediate||Agathocacological||Fate||Clothiers, divination, spiders and weaving||Air, Animal, Gate, Knowledge, Making and Breaking|
|Pavor||Male||Longshanks||Intermediate||Harmonious||Agathocacological||Travel||Companionship, conjuration, exploration, storytellers, messengers||Communication and Empathy, Gate, Movement, Weather|
|Pelactere||Female||Bloodtooth||Major||Chaotic||Malign||Rage||Evocation, murder, war||Air, Making and Breaking, Machine, Mind Control, Protection Warning|
|Phemos||Male||The Laurel||Intermediate||Harmonious||Benign||Sport||Nobility, peace||Animal, Body Control, Mind Control, Protection and Warning|
|Phlegethon||Male||Ironfist||Major||Ordered||Malign||Tyranny||Fortification, kingship, war||Body Control, Communication and Empathy, Earth, Making Breaking, Mind Control|
|Picus||Male||The Redcrest||Intermediate||Intermediate||Malign||Avians||Divination, heralds, messengers||Animal, Communication and Empathy, Knowledge, Movement|
|Podalirius||Male||The Gnarled Man||Major||Intermediate||Benign||Vegetation||Autumn, community, exploration, farming||Animal, Plant, Protection and Warning, Water, Weather|
|Podarge||Male||The Destroyer||Major||Anarchistic||Baneful||Destruction and Drowning||Piracy, undeath||Making and Breaking, Movement, Necromancy, Water, Weather|
|Polydorus||Male||The Beast||Major||Anarchistic||Malign||Wild Beasts||Hermits, nature, secrets||Animal, Earth, Knowledge, Protection and Warning, Weather|
|Pothos||Male||The Glutton||Major||Anarchistic||Malign||Vice||Adultery, gambling, music, secrets||Communication and Empathy, Fire, Knowledge, Mind Control, Sound|
|Ptharos||Male||The Father||Greatest||Ordered||Benevolent||Air||Rulership, authority, wisdom, truth, goodness||Air, Communication and Empathy, Knowledge, Making and Breaking, Protection and Warning, Weather|
|Ruminus||Male||Wormtongue||Major||Chaotic||Malign||Disease||Medicine, plagues, goats, worms||Animal, Body Control, Fire, Food, Healing|
|Sarpedon||Male||The Shieldsman||Intermediate||Harmonious||Benign||Guardians||Abjuration, rangers, law enforcement||Body Control, Enchantment (Armor), Knowledge, Plant|
|Selene||Female||The Vermillion||Major||Chaotic||Agathocacological||Beauty||Art, enchantment, love||Body Control, Communication and Empathy, Making and Breaking, Mind Control, Water|
|Stheno||Neuter||The Stillborn||Major||Harmonious||Baneful||Decay||Entropy, knowledge, necromancy, undeath||Food, Knowledge, Making and Breaking, Necromantic, Water|
|Taltos||Male||The Deepdweller||Greater||Harmonious||Baneful||Water||Greed, knowledge, piracy, sea monsters||Animal, Food, Knowledge, Making and Breaking, Water, Weather|
|Taygete||Female||The Bringer||Intermediate||Harmonious||Benign||Childbirth||Creation, herbalism, midwifery, parenthood||Healing, Illusion and Creation, Making and Breaking, Plant|
|Tempus||Male||The Hoarbeard||Intermediate||Ordered||Agathocacological||Time||Age, divination, history, scribes and winter||Air, Knowledge, Making and Breaking, Movement|
|Terpsichore||Female||The Reflection||Major||Harmonious||Agathocacological||Language||Drama, insight, knowledge, mirrors, writing||Air, Knowledge, Light and Darkness, Mind Control, Sound|
|Tethys||Female||The Crone||Major||Intermediate||Malign||Undeath||Decay, murder, necromancy||Enchantment, Fire, Making and Breaking, Mind Control, Necromantic|
|Thalia||Female||The Hearthwoman||Intermediate||Harmonious||Benign||Hearth||Cooking, family, protection||Animal, Food, Protection and Warning, Plant|
|Thallos||Male||The Bearer||Intermediate||Anarchistic||Agathocacological||Strength||Challenges, sport, war||Body Control, Making and Breaking, Movement, Protection Warning|
|Thanatos||Male||The Dweller in the Darkness||Major||Harmonious||Baneful||Darkness||Assassination, conjuration, insanity, night||Body Control, Fire, Light and Darkness, Mind Control, Movement|
|Thea||Female||The Muse||Major||Chaotic||Benign||Art||Construction, inspiration, invention||Communication and Empathy, Enchantment, Machine, Making Breaking, Water|
|Themis||Male||The Child||Major||Anarchistic||Malign||Mischief||Banditry, childhood, criminals||Air, Body Control, Light and Darkness, Mind Control, Movement|
|Thryope||Male||Addleshod||Major||Ordered||Malign||Age||Disease, infirmity, wisdom||Body Control, Communication and Empathy, Earth, Knowledge, Plant|
|Tisiphone||Female||The Despoiled||Major||Intermediate||Agathocacological||Vengeance||Assassins, justice||Communication and Empathy, Light and Darkness, Mind Control, Movement, Water|
|Veritas||Female||Heartbinder||Intermediate||Ordered||Benign||Marriage||Loyalty, oaths, work||Body Control, Enchantment (Limiting), Knowledge, Mind Control|
|Virtus||Male||The Hand||Major||Chaotic||Benign||Courage||Justice, war||Communication and Empathy, Earth, Making and Breaking, Metal, Mind Control|
|Vitulus||Male||The Architect||Intermediate||Harmonious||Agathocacological||Cities||Architecture, democracy, engineering, guilds, mercantilism||Communication and Empathy, Enchantment (Limiting), Machine, Making and Breaking|
|Vortumnus||Male||The Glorious||Intermediate||Ordered||Benevolent||Honor||Virtue, chivalry, feudalism, war||Animal, Body Control, Enchantment (Weapon), Protection Warning|
|Zelos||Male||Goldenhand||Major||Ordered||Agathocacological||The State||Nobility, rulership||Air, Communication and Empathy, Enchantment, Knowledge, Mind Control|
|Zephyrus||Male||The Black Rider||Intermediate||Chaotic||Malign||Nightmares||Fear, horses, insight, madness||Animal, Communication and Empathy, Knowledge, Mind Control|
List of Deities
Goddess of MagicThe Enscribed
The mysterious and aloof goddess of magic, Abaris is revered and sometimes feared throughout the three continents. Worship of Abaris is strongest in the Magocracy of Lun Dorak, where the Grand Mysteriorum of the Seventh Carnation lies as the central temple of worship and library of Abaris. Unlike most churches, priests of Abaris are not divided by major schisms or different views of orthodoxy. That said, the church hierarchy is also substantially less controlling than most ordered deities, existing more as a means for exchange of mystical information than a means for controlling its priesthood or laypeople.
Goddess of Rivers and Streams
One of the primary daughters of Betshaba, Adrasteia is the goddess of rivers and streams. Those few priests who worship Adrasteia directly are typically attached to the nearest Temple of Betshaba, working as servants and handmaidens to Betshaban priests, as their deity works as handmaiden to Betshaba herself. Despite her subservient role and small priesthood, Adrasteia is often called upon by those who rely on fresh water, including those who participate in shipping via river, subsist off of fresh water fish and in dry areas where agriculture relies irrigation fed by rivers. Though riverside shrines are not uncommon, true temples to Adrasteia are extremely rare.
Goddess of Drought
The Withered Hag
The cruel goddess of droughts and daughter of Dagon, Alcina is more often appeased with self-flagellation in dry regions to avoid her wrath or ritualistically defeated by followers of Orestea. Her extremely small clergy considers itself an integral part of bringing destruction to creation by preventing Orestea's rains and withering Podalirius' crops. Alcina captured Evander and forced him to lie with her in the hopes of begetting a son she could shape into an ally in pain. Ophion was the result of this union, but the youthful god rebelled against his mother, released Orestea from the prison he was intended to guard and took up the responsibility of carrying Lord Ptharos' Light of Truth across the heavens each day. Despite his betrayal, there is no special hatred between Ophion and his wicked mother.
As the goddess of despair, she is given the souls of those who die by suicide by Cthos and the living will sometimes pray to her to release these souls to a more friendly resting place. Her extremely small clergy follows Alcina as Ellesar of Many Wonders, concentrating on pain-induced visions and deceptive illusions that lead their enemies to despair and, hopefully, suicide.
God of Youth
Alcyoneus is the patron and protector of children and the young. Offerings are given to him primarily by parents to insure that their children grow strong and healthy. As Bonny Billy, he is something of a mischief-maker who plays pranks on adults who mistreat children. As Father Yul, he is a grand toy-maker who annually sneaks into the homes of children who have been good, leaving toys behind for them to enjoy. Of course, parents who desire Alcyoneus' good graces are typically the ones who place the presents at the foot of the children's beds at the Winter Solstice, but sometimes a present will appear without the assistance of mortals. In those cases, it is usually a warning to the parents to avoid miserliness when they should be focusing on generosity. Alcyoneus is also the Patron of Spring and is invoked in ceremonies on the Spring Equinox, where gift-giving is also encouraged.
It should be noted that Father Yul, for all his generosity and skill at carving, is a poor painter. Tradition holds that his wife, Thea, paints the toys that are to be given to children on Yul's Day. If a toy appears at the foot of a child's bed that is painted horribly wrong, it is said that the child is particularly blessed for the next year. It is Aridnus who provides a list of the children that have been good for the previous year, though Alcyoneus sometimes adds a few names if he feels that Aridnus has been too harsh in judgment.
Goddess of Pain
Alecto is most often appeased to avoid pain, particularly a painful death, but she is also the patroness of torturers. Alecto is known to be a merciless goddess, so the prayers of those trying to avoid pain are typically ignored. Her small clergy is generally hated, even in the vilest of lands, where they are employed in times of war by the local rulership to exact information from captured enemies and suspected spies. Her priests believe that she grants visions to loyal followers who inflict pain upon themselves.
Alecto often assists allied deities in inventing new ways to increase the pain involved in each of their spheres.
God of Greed
Amphitritus, as the God of Greed, has a fairly strong clergy in those nations which permit the worship of the malign deities. Priests are often heavily involved with the local Thieves' Guilds and often exert a great deal of political clout. In these regions, competition with the church of Britomaris can sometimes turn violent, but the two churches do not oppose each other on an ideological basis.
Amphitritus is also a patron of adventurers, particularly those who seek lost (or not so lost) treasures of times past.
God of Judgment
The clergy of Aridnus are a fairly influential group, but it is rare that they exert that influence in the political arena. In some regions, the local government relies on the clergy to officiate in trials and in most areas they are at least associated with the judicial system (if there is one). Aridnus is also the patron of scribes and, often, is associated with oversided bureaucracies by his critics. It should be noted that temples solely dedicated to Aridnus are rare... his clergy usually inhabit the same structure as those of Fides, Majestas and Meliboea.
The clergy of Aridnus are also often called upon by Guilds to construct weights and measurements for their use and most people know that measurements issued by the clergy of Aridnus are some of the most precise to be found.
God of Earth
The stern and stalwart god of earth is the son of Lord Ptharos and, along with his sister Betshaba, one of the Triad, the creators of the world. As creator of the dwarven race, he is almost universally worshiped as the primary deity by dwarves. He is worshiped throughout human cultures as a patron of smithing, construction and strength and symbolizes the mind and intelligence. Among humans, worship of Baelthor is strongest in the former Great Empire, where he is worshiped along side Betshaba and Lord Ptharos in temples of the Triad.
Baelthor's clergy is usually closely aligned with other Baelthoric deities (excepting Gyges, who is exiled from his father's presence both in celestial and temporal spheres). His greatest enemy is Enosigaois, the offspring of Dagon created to oppose Baelthor and ancient wars between dwarves loyal to their creator and those traitors who fell under the sway of Enosigaois are legendary among the dwarves.
Goddess of Wealth
Bellona is a cold, calculating deity who encourages her worshippers to do whatever is reasonable to increase their personal wealth. A number of merchants who find her son, Minos, to be too moralistic pray instead to Bellona. Though dispassionate, Bellona is accepted in many regions that otherwise prohibit worship of the descendants of Dagon. Her clergy is small, even in regions where worship of Bellona is popular. Applicants to her clergy must prove their ability to amass wealth and be able to prove this ability throughout their careers. The followers of Bellona often find themselves in opposition to those who worship her sister, Britomaris, Goddess of Thievery, and the rivalry between the two gods is the subject of more than one apocryphal story.
Followers of Bellona do not actively oppose the clergy of Clementia, Goddess of Mercy, but Clementia's followers often place themselves in direct opposition to the desires of the followers of Bellona.
Goddess of Water
Daughter of Lord Ptharos and sister to Baelthor, Betshaba is one of the creator deities that compose the Triad. Betshaba is the heart and passion of the Triad, beneficent to those who pay her homage and cruel, even heartless, to those who cross her. As goddness of water, she is universally accepted as the Wavequeen, Queen of the Oceans, opposed in her regency only by Taltos, Dagon's offspring created to oppose her. On Aurea, Betshaba is typically worshiped as part of the Triad, but elsewhere she usually has her own dedicated temples, particularly in port cities. Her church hierarchy tends to be well-organized, though individual Wavemothers tend to have a great deal of autonomy within their domains.
Though Betshaba opposes all of the Dagonian deities, she stands most ardently opposed to her uncle, Dagon himself, who attempted to rape her soon after Creation. She was rescued by Vortumnus and thus her clergy has something of a soft spot for followers of Vortumnus, even those who follow the Koramian Heresy. Though Taltos was created to oppose her, its generally believed that Betshaba long ago won the war for her domain and most of her faithful consider followers of Taltos to be an annoyance, at best.
Goddess of Thieves
The clergy of Britomaris are typically a secretive lot, even in regions where the worship of Britomaris is not frowned upon. The clergy tend to operate very closely with any organized crime element in the society they are in, typically providing divine support to their criminal activities. Britomaris encourages criminal organization as well as the freelance rogue, acknowledging that there are many methods by which people liberate goods from others.
Britomaris is something of a trickster goddess and rarely encourages her worshippers to kill their opponents (though leading them to their deaths is perfectly acceptable). As Traugott the Brave, she is depicted as a lovable rogue who is the patron of bandits and rangers. This aspect of Britomaris almost approaches a Benign Ethos, as redistribution of liberated wealth to the needy is encouraged. Harbona of the Streets, however, is depicted as a cut-throat murder who has no issue seducing men and stealing their gold, typically slitting their throats in the process. In this aspect, Britomaris certainly approaches a Malign Ethos, even though those who are killed are typically cheap and the murder is punishment for not giving to the poor. Guilded thieves almost never pay homage to these lesser aspects of Britomaris.
Britomaris is considered a fool by many of her darker brothers and sisters. Even Mormo, God of Deception, treats her like a naïve child. Though she is not as accepted as Kratos or Bellona, the worship of Britomaris in and of itself is rarely proscribed on religious grounds.
Goddess of Lust
Cardena, as the Goddess of Lust, is the patron of illicit liaisons, courtesans and even rapists. Worshippers of Cardena feel that only through the ecstasy of sexual intercourse can enlightenment be gained and seek to bring others to the same understanding. Cardena's temples are surprisingly common and are typically hidden in the brothels of large cities, but her priests carry little direct political influence. Worshippers have no qualms, of course, with using their art to influence politicians and officials. The tenants of Cardenan worship demand personal physical satisfaction, even at the expense of non-worshippers who are unwilling to enjoin in the sexual act. It is believed that Cardena even protects successful rapists from capture and punishment. Needless to say, worship of Cardena is abhorred in most lawful regions and her priests often find themselves persecuted, if not outright killed, for their beliefs.
Cardena and Erato are the most dire of enemies and their worshippers often find themselves in conflict.
God of Music
Cebren is one of the most-liked gods, even in cultures that encourage the worship of the descendants of Dagon. As the patron of troubadours and bards, he is considered to be the source of inspiration in his aspect as the Spirit. His divine clergy tend to be small in number, despite his popularity, and can only be found in major cities, but his followers can be found almost anywhere, roving in bands or wandering as individuals. Cebren promotes spreading the joy of music wherever possible and encourages troubadours and bards to travel, thus his close association with Pavor, God of Travel. Cebren is also the patron of town criers and it is said that the only time he takes vengeance on criminals is when one of his criers is murdered.
Goddess of Mercy
The worshippers of Clementia are few, but the number of priests compared to this population is high. As the goddess of mercy and peace, even worshippers are prohibited from raising a hand against an enemy and instead attempt to use passive resistance to change how society works. Clementia herself is known to often sleep on the doorstep to the palace of Betshaba, her mother, who Clementia feels is too harsh with those who use the sea.
Outsiders often view followers of Clementia as a joke, until the faithful decide to take up a cause and protest the evils of the world. Most of the enemies of the church are listed as such because they are often the subjects of church-sponsored protests and there are many stories about Clementia opposing these deities directly. Clementia only has true hatred for Tisiphone, Goddess of Vengeance, but even that hatred is tempered with a hope that Tisiphone can be made to see the error of her ways.
God of Lightning
Cottus has a very small clergy and almost no direct followers, though many archers will pray to him for good aim, particularly on the battlefield. Cottus' only real enemy is Gyges, who warns people of his coming during storms.
God of the Underworld
Lord of the Underworld, it is silent Cthos that sits in judgment over the dead from the Palace of Nugarath, sending the souls of the faithful to serve their deities and the hypocritical or faithless to their final doom. Though Cthos' clergy isn't particularly massive, it is fairly pervasive, as Cthos' executioners serve significant roles in the judicial processes of most urban areas. Though worshipers of Cthos tend to be fairly dark and morose, at best, worship is accepted in most regions as a necessity, particularly since most of his priests and worshipers consider themselves professionals, above such petty concerns as vengeance and hatred.
Cthos tends to be extremely neutral, both in mortal and entital politics, but his greatest enemy is Tethys, goddess of undeath. It is only when opposing the clergy of Tethys (and her undead minions) that Cthos' own followers fight with an often devastating, blind religious zeal.
God of Fire
Brother to Lord Ptharos and patron of fire, Dagon is the ultimate adversary, not only to the gods, but to the mortal world as well. His dictates demand nothing less than the total destruction of Creation. His worshipers believe Creation to be inherently flawed, rife with suffering and pain inflicted on mortals by the Triad itself. Their purpose is to destroy what the Triad created so that Dagon can recreate everything in his perfect image.
Despite his destructive and rebellious dogma, priests of Dagon are surprisingly pervasive. Few cultures have gone more than a decade without discovering a secret cabal of his worshipers quietly working in their midst to bring chaos and destruction to the world. Of Dagon's various children and creations, only Pelactere, his queen, has ever displayed any true loyalty as an ally, despite Dagon's periodic dalliances with Cardena and Alecto.
It is notable that, in the Aebasan Orthodoxy, Dagon is depicted as more of a trickster and punisher of the damned than the central adversary of the faith. Though he is still depicted as the King of the Damned, he is seen as much less an evil than that represented by Phlegethon, god of tyranny.
Goddess of Fertility
Drames is typically associated with her father Podalirius, God of Vegetation and shrines to her are typically included in the construction of temples to her father. Those few priests who serve her directly are also typically associated with the church of Podalirius, so much so that they are almost treated as beloved "junior members" of Podalirius' church.
Symbolic sacrifices of seed or gold are given to Drames in the hopes that she will make plants grow in the fields and humans conceive children.
Goddess of Poison
Empusa is worshiped primarily as Lady Death, patroness of assassins. Spiders figure prominently in the worship of Empusa and there is much enmity between Empusa and Nelestrix because of this. For obvious reasons, Laestrygones, God of Health, is a prominent enemy but her greatest enemy is certainly Sarpedon, God of Guardians.
Empusa's temples are typically hidden affairs, often laden with poisoned traps. Snakes are also significant to Empusa and, along with over-sized spiders, are used regularly as temple guardians. Empusa tends to be a very urban deity, though there are some remote enclaves of worshipers who focus on her interest in arachnids.
God of Earth
The Vile Roarer
Enosigaois is one of the Inimicures, one of the three gods created by Dagon in his attempt to defeat Lord Ptharos, Betshaba and Baelthor. He was created primarily to oppose Baelthor under the earth and the two arch-enemies have fought ever since. In his aspect of Enos, Enosigaois once had sway over many of Baelthor's dwarves, but the Earth-War that ended almost nine millennia ago saw the extinction of the dwarven followers of Enos and Enosigaois never recovered his dwarven worshippers.
In the sunlit world, however, Enosigaois has a surprising number of priests, most of which are involved in warfare. Whereas Baelthor has an interest in construction, particularly in stone, Enosigaois is the patron of siegecraft and most of the best artillerists in any mercenary company worship Enosigaois. Strangely, Enosigaois is also a patron of rebellion as well as tyranny. Typically, this results in individuals calling upon Enosigaois to help them overthrow a just king or democracy to create a dictatorship under their rule.
God of Floods
The Drowned Wyrm
Epimetheus is typically depicted as a wingless dragon that spouts water from his huge maw. He is a merciless, uncaring god who is more than willing to drown his own followers as well as their enemies in sudden floods. Epimetheus is not a popular deity, but is often appeased by those who live next to rivers that are given to sudden flooding. Strangely, Epimetheus promotes a cyclical belief structure that highlights not only the destructive attributes of a flood, but the renewal that follows. The destruction that Epimetheus encourages is for the purpose of rebuilding something better than it was before.
God of Love
Erato is the god of love, but more precisely he is the god of courtship. His priests counsel lovers and protect those accused of committing crimes in the name of love (which is permissible by his tenants, as long as the act is truly out of love... murder and rape are acts of violence and do not qualify). Erato is also a god of courtesans, though worship does not focus on the physical aspects of love. Homosexuality is actively supported by the clergy, wrongly suggesting that Erato is interested solely in sexual pleasure. Erato's greatest enemy is Cardena, goddess of lust, and his priests are commanded to root out and destroy any nests of Cardena that they can find. Other than their almost unreasoning hatred of the worship of Cardena, Eratan priests are incredibly open-minded and are often called upon to assist in negotiations between vastly differing cultures. As the god of enchantment, Erato encourages the responsible use of Enchantment spells, particularly the Charm spells.
God of Gates
The Vaunted One
Evander is the god of gates and fortifications and is most often called upon during the construction of buildings, particularly castles. Worship of Evander is surprisingly widespread, particularly among masons, military engineers and their workmen. Evander demands respect from those who would call upon him, requiring sometimes-lengthy rituals to ensure his beneficence, but he is stalwart in his opposition to the forces of evil.
Evander is perhaps most strongly aligned with his son with Majestas, Sarpedon. Worship of the two is almost inextricably linked among castle guards. Evander's greatest enemy is Enosigaois, particularly in the latter god's aspect as the god of siegecraft.
God of Hunting
Faunaros is often depicted as a noble rider prepared for the hunt. He is a protector of civilized places and as such is known to roam the wilds near Vitulus' home, protecting the Celestial City from intruders. As Bidari the Warmaster, he is the god of Evocation and serves Abaris as one of the Dukes of Mystery with domain over Evocation spells. As Godwin Goodfellow, he is the patron of cooks, particularly professional cooks in the castles of nobles and protects those who pray to him from preparing bad food. As the Mongrel Lord, he punishes those who mistreat dogs, typically by trapping them in the wilderness and hunting them until they die of exhaustion. Faunaros can be a cruel deity, but his aim is to protect civilized lands from the depredations of Polydorus, his most dire enemy.
God of Oaths
Fides, the Oathbinder, is invoked whenever a contract is signed in the hopes that he will both dissuade and strike vengeance upon anyone who seeks to violate that contract. In the legends, he is often depicted as quarreling with his wife, Meliboea, who is often more interested in justice than the letter of an oath. Fides does not encourage active oppression of other deities, including those that are his foes. When the worshippers of those deities cause an Oath to be broken, however, his priests are often that much more merciless in punishing the transgressors.
Lying is a deadly sin to the followers of Fides, particularly in matters concerning a contract. Thus, priests are often called upon to witness the signing of an Oath and in many lands their word on the state of a contract that they've witnessed is considered appropriate evidence in trials.
God of Winter
The Hyemal Lord
Fraus is primarily the god of winter, though he is also one of the few descendants of Dagon concerned with the processes of law. In his aspect as the Hyemal Lord, Fraus is the patron of law for the sake of law and is disinterested in mitigating factors such as justice. He does not often work well with his brothers and sisters because of the chaotic nature of his family and is truly despised by his brother Stheno, God of Decay. Fraus has a strong following among barristers and judges in more oppressive lands, but few others call upon Fraus for any reason other than to appease him during particularly bleak winters.
God of Wine
Furinus is a god who loves to be entertained and encourages his worshippers to lead a hedonistic life of celebration and revelry. Well-liked by many gods, Furinus typically ends up on the bad side of other deities more by accident than anything else. His one true foe, however, is Mania, the Goddess of Madness and his own mother. Whereas Furinus is the god of the gentle simpleton, his mother is patron of the raving madman and often strikes down his own worshippers out of spite. The only thing that will truly enrage a priest of Furinus (other than forced sobriety) is the worship of Mania.
Goddess of Victory
Galea is a deity who is often called upon to intercede in matters of war or finance, but tends to have a small and established following. In many lands, when Galea grants a victory that ends a war or conquers a nation, it is expected for the victors to construct a temple to her (in the Great Empire, it is traditional to construct this temple out of the disassembled stones of the conquered king's fortification or home). Galea is fairly neutral in how she grants victory, but can be very fickle when those she benefits ignore her contributions. Regions that remain unsettled even after being conquered are said to be rebellious because the victors have fallen from her favor.
God of Thunder
Gyges has an extremely small clergy, but most heralds and messengers worship him as their patron; even a number of rangers call upon him for wisdom in the wilderness. Gyges' primary responsibility as a deity is to call out a warning when Cottus, God of Lighting, is rampaging in the mortal realms.
Goddess of Poetry
Himere is the patron of poets, singers and lovers (particularly female lovers). She is the sometimes consort of Erato, God of Love and the two usually have no trouble sharing domain over the matters of the heart, though there are some wonderfully interesting stories of the fights that erupt when the two of them disagree. Himere is chaotic in the extreme and encourages her followers to compose for a purpose, typically to illustrate in as effective a way as possible the cracks and foibles of society. Her priests tend to vary wildly in their political associations and activities and there is no real hierarchy within the church itself.
Though Himere has few foes among other deities, she particularly despises Phlegethon and the one situation in which her followers tend to work well together is fomenting dissent against the Lord of Tyranny.
Goddess of Dreams
Hypnos is the goddess of dreams and inspiration. The laity to interpret the portents or messages carried in dreams often calls upon her priests, where they are commonplace. Her lay worshippers are relatively few and often are composed solely of illusionists who find Mormo or Alcina to be too harsh for their tastes. Her greatest enemy is Zephyrus, God of Nightmares, who seeks to pervert the messages that she tries to impart upon sleeping mortals.
God of Friendship
Companions and partners often invoke Innus as the God of Friendship, though his priesthood is extremely small. Most of his priests focus on researching abjuration spells and tend to be scholarly, if friendly, in nature. As Delaranos, Innus is often invoked in the functions of merchants’ guilds, along with Minos. Innus dislikes those deities who attempt to interfere in friendship, but is in opposition to Megarea, the Goddess of Jealousy, most often.
God of War
Kratos, the Lord of War, is the patron of weaponsmithing, loyalty, courage and, most prominently, the act of war itself. Despite having sprung from one of the wounds of Dagon at the conclusion of the First Battle, Kratos is accepted as a grim necessity in most human cultures and tends to only be prohibited in regions where the worship of Vortumnus, his rival, is dominant.
Kratos is a deity of great dichotomies. He encourages great passion among his followers, but also demands strict discipline. He is a bloody god of war, yet also serves as patron to those who create weapons of war. Despite demanding the deepest of loyalties from his followers, he does not discourage his warriors from fighting in the name of other deities, even those he stands in opposition to. He does not encourage war for its own sake and recognizes the need for periods of peace... though typically this is viewed more as a time to prepare for future wars rather than a lasting state.
God of Work
Ladon is the deity of workers and is worshiped by those who perform physical labor, particularly poor urban craftsmen and slaves. It should be noted that Ladon does not support the concept of slavery directly, but is rather the deity of the slaves themselves, giving them the strength and will to persevere and complete the tasks that they have been designated for. He is also known to punish overseers and owners who grossly mistreat their slaves without cause. Ladon has an unusual relationship with Minos, alternatively an ally and opponent of the Merchantlord. Followers of Minos often pray to Ladon to ensure that their workers work hard and produce well, but Ladon’s priests often harshly oppose those merchants who over-work or otherwise mistreat their workers and denounce those who hoard gold while those who made them the money go hungry. Ladon is also a patron of the poor but, unlike Clementia, he opposes the concept of direct handouts. His priests encourage businesses and guilds to train the poor in a craft to help them make money themselves through, of course, hard work.
As Borvald the Builder, Ladon is a god of construction and is worshiped by architects and builders alike.
God of Health
Laestrygones is the patron of physics, chirugeons and healers in general. Though he encourages the use of spells to aid in healing, he also promotes scientific investigation into the causes of disease and harm. His priests tend to be somewhat aloof, often requiring a payment to the church in return for their healing services, which has lead many to accuse the Laestrygonites of being uncaring. Ruminus, God of Disease, is Laestrygones’ archenemy and, despite his call for his priests to do no harm, they often encourage others to assist them by outlawing and attacking Ruminide priests.
Goddess of the Moon
The Horned Queen
Luna, Goddess of the Moon, inherited her madness from her mother, whom she despises, but also gained a unique insight and wisdom from her father, Ptharos. Her priests tend to be touched by madness as well and are charged themselves with caring for the truly insane. While it is known that Luna has cursed numerous werebeasts, particularly werewolves, by forcing them to change into animals when under her full gaze, her reasons (if there are any) are unknown. It is said that she was once a patron to wolves, but that they betrayed her and she has never forgiven them for that betrayal. The call of wolves during a full moon is said to be those asking for forgiveness from an uncaring and vengeful goddess.
Luna is wed to Ophion, who cares for her when insanity completely overtakes her.
God of Air
The Crimson Wyrm
Maelphegor was created by Dagon to oppose Lord Ptharos, also God of Air, and is one of the three Inimicures, along with his brothers Enosigaois and Taltos. Maelphegor has a surprisingly large priesthood who are split into two major sects: the Karakaels, or Windlords, concentrate on Maelphegor’s interest in madness and believe that insanity brings insight. The Crimson Cowls focus more on his interest in revenge and tend to support large groups of loosely organized assassins wherever they are established.
The priesthood is banned in many states and, as such, often operates in secret. The most significant temples are founded on high mountain peaks as a show of defiance to Lord Ptharos.
Goddess of Law
Majestas, as the Goddess of Law and consort to Zelos, God of the State, is highly respected in even the most liberal of nations. Though her priesthood tends to be politically strong, she has few actual lay worshippers. Those who do chose Majestas as a patron are typically those who make a profession of investigation, including the leadership of town guards, spies working for more Ordered nations, historians and even some adventurers.
There are relatively few temples dedicated to Majestas alone. More often her temples are also dedicated to the worship of Aridnus, Fides and Meliboea; in some regions, these temples also double as the local judicial houses.
Majestas has many foes among the Dagonian deities, but considers Pothos to be her most grievous enemy. Her alliance with her daughter, Veritas, is shaky at best because of the elder god’s often adulterous dalliances with various deities, including Veritas’ own father, Laestrygones.
Goddess of Madness
Mania is a strange deity who embraces not only the throws of insanity, but encourages the spread of insanity to others. The central belief structure is the concept that the world created by Ptharos, Betshaba and Baelthor is an illusion and that the true reality exists beyond even the deities themselves, despite the fact that this appears to be a self-defeating philosophy to most outsiders.
Mania is also something of a trickster goddess, particularly when it comes to gathering other gods to her bed. Her most significant coup is the apocryphal Seduction of the King, wherein she conceived Luna, Goddess of the Moon, with Lord Ptharos himself. She encourages her followers to break the constraints of reality wherever possible, particularly the reality of others.
Priests of Mania are rare and lay worshippers almost non-existent. Most nations, even those dedicated to some of the other Dagonian deities, prohibit the worship of Mania and actively persecute her clergy. Of particular note is her hatred towards Paelemona, Goddess of Fate. Not only does Mania covet Paelmona’s place as the Duchess of Mystery for Divination, but teaches that Paelmona’s weavings are the primary composition of the “false universe” in which most people exist.
Goddess of Jealousy
Megarea is the protector of adulterers and the jealous; as such, her priesthood is extremely small and there are even fewer devout worshippers. Only unwed women are permitted into the priesthood and there is a strong bias within what little hierarchy exists towards lesbian women. In her aspect as Avrida the Quiet, Megarea is the protector of secrets and is often prayed to by otherwise honest people who wish to keep some secret private.
Most of Megarea’s foes are such because she is jealous of their traits or because her worshippers find themselves in opposition to their aims. She particularly hates her father, Maelphegor, both for refusing to acknowledge her as his favorite and because he is the husband of her lover, Tisiphone, Goddess of Vengeance.
Goddess of Justice
Meliboea has many of the same interests as her mother, Majestas, but shares little of her interest in fairness. Meliboea desires nothing more than to see the wrong be brought to justice, regardless of local legal systems. Despite having strangely opposed spheres, Tisiphone and Meliboea consider each other reluctant allies, as often the same people who seek vengeance are also seeking justice. When those two aims are at cross purposes, Meliboea and Tisiphone become the direst of enemies.
Meliboea’s priests tend to be younger than most, as she encourages them to go forth and mete out justice whenever possible. It is also because of this that her priests are often not welcome in the most peaceful of nations, though they are rarely proscribed outright.
Meliboea rarely has temples of her own; her priests typically worship in the same physical structure as the temples of Aridnus, Majestas, and Fides. In some regions, these temples also double as the local judicial houses and Meliboeans are unusually influential and restrained in these areas.
Goddess of Clouds
The Nymph Queen
Melpomene was the result of the rape of Orestea, Goddess of Rain, by Gyges, God of Thunder, during one of his legendary rages. Melpomene has since forgiven her father of his rage and acts as something of an intermediary between her parents. Though she was once consort to Ophion, God of the Sun, the two went their separate ways when he started chasing his current consort, Luna. Melpomene and Ophion are now bitter enemies as she tries to block the Light of Truth that he carries for Ptharos from reaching the people of the world.
As Jomaera the Ever-Changing, Melpomene is the Duchess of Mystery of Transmutation. In this form, she is typically depicted as a woman with a featureless face.
Though respected as a Duke of Mystery, Melpomene is not often worshiped directly and her clergy is extremely small. Some messengers choose Melpomene as their patron and she has taken it upon herself to care for mothers, despite being estranged from her own child, Picus, God of Birds.
God of Commerce
Minos, known as Minar in some southern regions, is one of the more popular deities, enjoying both a large clergy and following among the merchant class of most cities. Politically powerful, Minos is one of the younger gods and is often viewed as too interested in material gain by more philosophic deities. He is favored by his father, Pavor, God of Travel, and enjoys a close alliance with Vitulus, God of Cities.
Despite his commercial interests, Minos encourages his worshippers to be fair in their dealings, though a contract is considered inviolate regardless of how fair it is. Because of this, Minos is often at odds with Amphitritus, who often covets the Merchantlord’s political and economic power, as well as his own mother, Bellona, who encourages theft and trickery as a means to amass one’s fortune.
God of Deception
Though many deities claim deception as a minor concern, Mormo is the master of the lie. He is the only deity that actively encourages his priests to pose as the priests of other deities and rewards those who are successful at using this deception to corrupt the worship of other deities. Myths tell of how he has tricked one god or another to some degree, though his greatest deception was the Seduction of Clementia, and begat upon her Orchus, God of Luck. Clementia has long since forgiven Mormo and his son tends to ignore his father’s activies.
Mormo’s greatest deital opponent is Aridnus, though most of his foes consider him a dire enemy. Mormo and Themis are on decent terms, however, instead choosing to compete over who can pull the best lie.
The priesthood of Mormo is believed to be small, but because of the deity’s nature, actual numbers are difficult to uncover. Lay worshippers primarily include those who spy for a living.
God of the Forge
Despite being a son of Baelthor, Mulciber is known more for his avowed neutrality than his association with his father and siblings. He is still loyal to his sire, but refuses to force his faithful to consider the morality of their actions. The focus of Mulciberan worship is logic and personal temperance. His faithful are often found serving each side of any single conflict, either by creating weapons or participating in the combats themselves. Conversely, Mulciber is also the patron of invention and inspiration; his followers are encouraged to use their mind to the fullest and avoid complacency. Though he makes no distinction between male and female priests, most male priests work the forges while female priests tend to work as midwives in their communities.
The priesthood is not particularly politically active, though it is more extended than one would expect for a deity that shies away from actively proselytizing. Lay worshippers tend to be omnipresent in almost any community and the worship of Mulciber is only rarely proscribed by law (and even then only in the most strict of religious communities).
Goddess of Insects
The Insect Queen
Nelestrix is primarily a nature deity, representing the destructive capacity of the smallest things. She is a strange, alien deity often depicted as a disgusting half-woman, half-insect creature. Her priesthood is small and typically avoids urban and rurual areas alike, preferring instead to worship in relative peace deep in wilderness swamps. Those few urban priests typically proselytize to the lower classes and are often defended by masses of rats and their wererat masters.
God of the Sun
Ophion is god of the sun, who bears Lord Ptharos’ Light of Truth across the heavens to light the world in his flaming chariot. His priesthood is surprisingly small, particularly considering his popularity among the masses. Ophion is typically depicted as a vibrant and extremely attractive young man riding his chariot and holding aloft the Light of Truth. He encourages his followers to be fair with one another in all things and to avoid deception whenever possible. Though he espouses the virtues of peaceful conflict in all its forms, he is relentless in his hatred of the undead and amongst his faithful are some of the most dangerous undead-hunters to roam the lands.
Ophion's lay followers include messengers, soldiers and young men, though his favored followers are his athletes. Ophion and Phemos are loyal to one another when faced with an enemy, though their competitions are legendary. Ophion was once wed to Melpomene, Goddess of Clouds, but began to pursue the beautifully mad Luna across the heavens and eventually married her. Melpomene has done her best since then to obscure the light that Ophion carries, though she is still willing to ally with him against the forces of true darkness.
God of Luck
Orchus is a mysterious deity that even his priests do not fully comprehend. He is alternately kind and spiteful, speaks in riddles and allies himself with both the forces of darkness and of light. Adventurers are his most common lay worshippers, though many gamblers and prostitutes have taken him as a patron, even though he shows them little favor. Orchus encourages his worshippers to discover new things while himself having a strange hatred for scholars and intellectuals. Despite his deeply diametric nature, Orchus tends to be surprisingly fair in how he doles out good and bad fortune, though his fairness is often deeply obfuscated.
Orchus it the only deity said to be immune to the powers of Paelemona, Goddess of Fate, and because of this her worshippers are directed to oppose him wherever possible.
Goddess of Rain
Orestea is the goddess of life-giving rain, which helps plants grow, slakes the thirst and washes away the sins of mortals. Though her followers are not pacifists in the strictest sense, she forbids them from taking a life. Her priesthood tends to be small and her direct worshipers few, but even those who follow Dagonian gods will sometimes call upon Orestea for forgiveness.
Orestea hates tyranny in all its forms and encourages her followers to protect the liberty of others. It is said that it was she who first gave the early Aebasans the secret of Democracy.
God of Storms
Orthus, the Stormrider, is the god of storms, particularly storms at sea but is most often worshiped as a god of war at sea. His clergy tend to be small and militaristic, though somewhat influential in coastal ports where they are not proscribed. Orthus is often depicted as riding a horrid steed created from the clouds themselves, cresting atop a hurricane or waterspout.
As Njord in the Danic tradition, he is something of a fertility god as well and appears to have lost some of his more destructive tastes; though still a god of war at sea, most gods in the Danic tradition represent some aspect of war.
Goddess of Fate
Paelemona, the Fateweaver, is typically depicted as a woman at a loom with three faces: the maiden, the mother and the crone. As the Goddess of Fate, she knows all that is to come but has already forgotten all that has come to pass. She is also the patron of weavers and encourages them not only to create the finest wares they are capable of, but to predict what buyers will need and clients truly desire.
As Scalla, the Spider-Queen, she is the Duchess of Mystery for Divination and is propitiated by augurs and seers who seek to learn more of the future. In the Danic tradition, her three aspects are considered separate as Urd, Skuld and Verdandi, the Norns and goddesses of destiny. They are also law-givers in this latter tradition and Paelemona’s typical association with weavers is subdued.
God of Travel
Pavor is the god of travelers, explorers, messengers and conjurers. Said to be the fastest of the gods, it is his responsibility to usher the souls of the departed to Cthos, God of the Underworld, for final judgment. His priests are charged with guarding roads and pathways and tend to be both politically powerful and widespread. Pavor is often closely associated with Minos and the two are staunch allies; in many places, the temples to Pavor and Minos are part of the same structure. Pavor encourages those who travel in his name to tell stories to while the time away and many epic works are framed around a pilgrimage in Pavor’s name.
As Pavari Longshanks, Pavor is the Duke of Mystery of Conjuration and is concerned not only with summoning, but planar travel, a subject forbidden in most religions. In the Danic tradition, Pavor is known as Svipdag and his duties as a guide to the underworld and patron of messengers are stressed.
Goddess of Rage
Pelactere is the Goddess of Rage and promotes the concept that the immediate reaction is always the most true. She encourages her followers to be strong in spirit, though often their rages can get the best of them. She is something of a war goddess as well, particularly those wars fought over the smallest slights. Pelactere gave birth to Thallos, God of Strength, after tricking Virtus, God of Courage, to lay with her. She intended Thallos to be her servant and possible consort, but when he rebuffed her, the two became dire enemies. Dagon, God of Fire, later chose her as his consort.
In the Danic Tradition, Pelactere is known as Vidar, considered the strongest of the Danic gods and something of a God of Vengeance, though he is considered honorable in their tradition.
God of Sport
Phemos is the god of sport and encourages his followers and those who propitiate him to deal fairly and honestly in competition with others. He is also the patron of nobles who desire to be kind and fair to their people and entreats them to avoid the plague of war whenever possible. Though his priesthood tends to lack any real political power, they are surprisingly numerous, most often acting as officials in local festivals and tournaments. He is particularly beloved in Aebasa and the former Empire of Zeth, where the Phemoan Games (once called the Zetian Games in Zeth) are played every Spring. During these Games, Zeth essentially ceased any ongoing conflicts and invited even their enemies to enjoy a peaceful week of competition. The Zetian Games were so popular in the Empire that athletes were often able to make a career out of participating, and every athlete hopes for the honor of an invitation from the Emperor to play in the Games in the City of Zeth itself. Some of the nations that once composed the Great Empire now conduct their own versions of these games.
God of Tyranny
Phlegethon is the patron of tyrants and considered to be the gravest of evils, even worse than Dagon, in the Aebasan Orthodoxy. Even the Empire of Zeth, arguably the most efficient modern tyranny, proscribes the worship of Phlegethon, though some of its more prominent families, particularly House Gabinius, are rumored to secretly worship the Tyrant-Lord. Despised even by his fellow descendants of Dagon, Phlegethon promotes the concept that the strongest are meant to rule and all others are subjects and to be treated as such. His clergy, where they exist, are hierarchical in the extreme and, despite their bloated ranks, tend to be an extremely efficient engine.
Phlegethon is worshiped openly only in the former Empire of Bakal, where the worship of any deity considered an enemy of Phlegethon is anathema. Phlegethon’s most dire enemy, surprisingly, is his own father, Enosigaois, God of Earth. Conflicts between the two are legendary as Phlegethon sees him as a stepping-stone towards becoming King of the Gods.
As Apholeon, he is given grudging respect as the patron of fortifications where worship of Evander, God of Gates, is weak.
God of Avians
Picus is a strange deity, often depicted as a wiry human with the head of a raven or fully in raven form. He is closely allied with Polydorus, God of Wild Beasts and shares that deities hatred of civilization (though not to the same extreme degree). Picus’s priesthood is extremely small and his direct worshippers few, though some heralds and messengers call upon him from time to time when they feel that Pavor has failed them.
It is said that Picus is the most knowledgeable of all the gods, as his birds watch everything for him. Legend suggests that his ravens can absorb the memories of the deceased by eating their eyes. As Agara the Peregrin, he seeks to disrupt those who hunt in the name of Faunaros, God of Hunting, particularly those who dare to tame his hawks and falcons to use when hunting.
God of Vegetation
The Gnarled Man
Podalirius is easily one of the most worshiped deities in the known world and though his large body of clergymen can exert considerable political influence when needed, they rarely elect to do so. Even in lands where the worship of Dagonian gods are encouraged, the worship of Podalirius is rarely proscribed. Though he is usually neutral towards the treatment of his worshipers by others, even accepting serfdom as appropriate in some cultures, he entreats his worshipers to oppose Phlegethon, God of Tyranny, whenever possible, including rescuing slaves from his grasp. His most dire enemy, however, is Ruminus, God of Disease, who seeks to lay waste to the fertility that Podalirius encourages. Podalirius promotes the concept of spiritual enlightenment through creation, exploration and hard work. A life of service is the primary means of achieving the favor of Podalirius after death.
Podalirius is often depicted as an unattractive god with deep green, wrinkled skin and vines growing out of his body. When his sister Selene, Goddess of Beauty, had a dalliance with Kratos, God of War and offspring of Dagon, she was forced to wed Podalirius by Lord Ptharos as punishment for her misdeeds; Podalirius, who was the only god not infatuated with Selene, has since come to love his wife and sister despite her periodic infidelity.
God of Destruction and Drowning
Podarge is primarily the patron of pirates and proscribed in most nations, including those dedicated to the Dagonian gods. His priests have some influence in the Pirate Islands, but the center of Podargan worship is amongst the pirates of Mendar. His worship is most strongly opposed by Thea, the Goddess of Art, whose creations he orders destroyed and Betshaba, Goddess of Water, whose oceans he violates whenever possible.
As Gal’tis, he is depicted as a desiccated orc and consort to Tethys, Goddess of Undeath. In this aspect Podarge is unusual in that he is one of the few deities outside their own recognized by the orcs, who fear him as a creature of the night who comes to turn them into his mindless undead minions.
God of Wild Beasts
Polydorus is a strange, savage god whose few worshippers tend to be barbarians and raiders from less civilized lands or hermits who seek enlightenment by avoiding contact with other humans. Polydorus teaches that humanity, and particularly civilization, was a blight put upon the world by the Ptharian gods whose only purpose is to despoil nature and rape the wilderness of its beauty. His most dire enemy, not surprisingly, is Vitulus and it is said that he rewards anyone who is able to fully destroy an entire city. Of all the gods, only Selene, Goddess of Beauty, is able to calm his rage and several times she had seduced him into helping the Ptharian gods fight against the forces of darkness.
Polydorus is depicted as a huge, savage wolf named Fenrir in the Danic Tradition, destined to kill Wotan, King of the Gods, in the final days of the world.
God of Vice
Pothos, the so-called “Lord of the Die”, is the patron of gamblers, prostitutes, hallucinogenics and general hedonism. He encourages his worshipers to enjoy themselves to the fullest, regardless of the consequences. Active worship is proscribed in most areas, but secretly many at least call upon Pothos when enjoying themselves. Pothos is typically depicted as a grossly overweight man with a beautiful woman at his feet, a hooka in his right hand and a hock of ham in his left.
Pothos’s gravest enemy is his own brother, Ruminus, God of Disease. Their enmity began when Pothos entreated his brother to drink with him, but the God of Disease refused. Eventually, Ruminus created a whole class of diseases specifically designed to harm those who enjoyed Potho’s sins.
God of AirThe Father
Lord Ptharos is the Great Father, leader of the Triad and, in the Imperial Tradition, King of the Gods. He is the god of wisdom and rightful rulership, whatever form that takes. In the Aebasan Orthodoxy, Lord Ptharos once went mad with power and became a tyrant, until he was overthrown and replaced with the Celestial Council. In the Koramian Heresy, Ptharos realized that he had become corrupt and passed the scepter of rulership to Vortumnus. In both of the latter traditions, he is depicted as a wizened old man that has repented his corruption and acts as an adviser, not a ruler, to the gods.
Due to these disparate belief systems, worship of Lord Ptharos is paramount in the states of the former Great Empire, where his clergy are often king-makers and once even crowned the Emperor himself, though since the fall of the Great Empire, his influenced has waned greatly everywhere but Zeth. On Duria and Gallorea, worship of Lord Ptharos is rare except in Temples to the Triad, which also support Baelthor, his son, and Betshaba, his daughter.
The liturgy of Lord Ptharos claims that he has no enemies, as he has forgiven all of the trespasses of other deities, including that of his own brother, Dagon, for trying to destroy creation. Though the clergy of Lord Ptharos do not call Crusades of any sort, they are often called upon to stand up to the machinations of Dagon or his descendants.
God of Disease
Ruminus, the Plaguebearer, is typically depicted as a goat-headed man covered in pustules that drip a vile slime. Like Polydorus, God of Wild Beasts, Ruminus despises mankind and seeks its destruction. His most dire enemy is Laestrygones, God of Health, though most of his enemies actively hunt down his clergymen and kill them wherever found. Thus, the clergy of Ruminus tends to be extremely small and his direct worshippers even fewer. Even so, most people will attempt to propitiate Ruminus in times of plague or disease.
Ruminus’ interest in medicine extends only so far as to extend the lifespan of the afflicted, not cure their ailments. The belief is that one who has a highly communicable disease should live long enough to spread the disease to as many people as possible.
God of Guardians
The ever-protective god of guardians, Sarpedon promotes strength in spirit, body and mind as a means to perfection. He is closely aligned with Majestas, his mother, Evander, his father, Meliboea and Fides, though it is rare that his temples (called Chapterhouses) occupy the same structure as his family. Worship of Sarpedon is strong in any civilized land, with numerous town guards and woodland rangers loyal to the local government claiming him as a patron. His highly organized clergy are typically involved in training town guards and, in smaller towns or in emergencies, the highest ranking cleric to Sarpedon often acts as Captain of the Guard.
As Sard, Sarpedon is the Duke of Mystery for Abjuration spells and is thus closely aligned with Abaris as well. In the Danic Tradition, he is known as Heimdul and guards the pathways between this world and the next.
Goddess of Beauty
Selene is the goddess of beauty and it is said that any mortal who lays eyes on her will eventually pine away into death. Despite this, Selene has difficulty subduing her passion for mortal men and more than a few have fallen to her legendary beauty. Legends also tell the tale of how Selene fell for the rugged strength of Kratos and, with him, bore Erato, the god of love. Because she had dared to mate with a son of Dagon, however, Selene was condemned by Lord Ptharos to wed one who was immune to her beauty. After examining each of the gods, it was finally discovered that Podalirius, god of vegetation, was the only deity who could resist her charms. Lord Ptharos forced the two to wed, despite Selene’s heated objections to being married to one of the ugliest of gods. With Podalirius, Selene begat Drames, the goddess of fertility. Legends suggest that Selene has since begun to find true love with Podalirius and that even he has begun to fall in love with her, despite her infidelity.
Selene’s church tends to be of moderate size in most lands and works to help those with problems in their love-lives resolve those problems. Though she encourages her followers to participate in the sex act as often as possible, she prohibits prostitution as a debasement of the sex act.
As Alera the Alluring, Selene is the Duchess of Mystery of Enchantment and is prayed to for wisdom in using those spells. In the Danic Tradition, she is Sif, wife of Tor (an aspect of Gyges, God of Thunder) and a fertility goddess; in this aspect, her more hedonistic tendencies are subdued.
God of Decay
The worship of Stheno, the androgynous god of decay and dissolution, is proscribed in most regions, but worship of the deity is so limited that it is a rare event when his worshippers are discovered. Once a powerful political and religious force in the world, Stheno’s worshippers now are mostly undead creatures bent on either fighting with the undead of Tethys, who Stheno looks to with avarice, or seeking archaic knowledge hidden in the recesses of time. Unlike Tethys, Stheno encourages her undead worshippers to ally with each other when seeking common goals and her undead tend to be strangely social creatures, despite their unliving state.
God of Water
Taltos, the Deepdweller, was created by Dagon to oppose Betshaba in her sphere as Goddess of Water. He is the patron of sea monsters and his seed has resulted in the creation of many creatures of the deep who harrow merchants and travelers on Betshaba’s waters. Most of Taltos’ worshippers are pirates, who he encourages to work together to gain riches and plunder on the seas. His worship is strongest in the Pirate Isles, but most coastal regions at least have a secret seacave where sacrifices can be made before long ocean journeys in an attempt to appease him. Taltos’ priests are often excellent scholars and are encouraged to use logic and reason in all things. Unlike most other deities of his rank, Taltos is on good terms with all his children, even those who bicker with each other, and this alliance is seen as one of the greater threats to the Triadic deities.
Goddess of Childbirth
Taygete is a fertility goddess, particularly focused on human fertility. The daughter of Drames and Zelos, she is closely associated with both parent deities. Taygete is most often worshiped by midwives and herbalists, though she is often appealed to for wisdom by frustrated parents. Taygetan clergywomen (most Taygetan priests are women) tend to lack any real political influence, though they are widespread in most urban areas. Direct worshippers, aside from those mentioned above, are rare.
God of Time
Though Tempus has few direct worshippers, his clergy is of moderate size and often act as the record-keepers of many civilizations. As god of time, it is Tempus’ responsibility to keep the Wheel of Fate spinning for his sister, Paelemona, Goddess of Fate, and the two are closely associated. Tempus is seen by most a cold, impersonal deity and has charged his priests to only record what they see and to avoid participating in or attempting to influence events. Many priests view this as a command to take a vow of silence and have not spoken since they first gained their robes.
Goddess of Language
Terpsichore is the patron of language, drama and the written word. Her clergy tends to be small, but she has at least one temple in any large city. She has a moderate following, composed mostly of actors, poets, writers and scholars. She encourages her followers to spread their knowledge to others, but not forcefully so. A peaceful deity, she finds her efforts thwarted only by Orchus, god of luck, who is strangely opposed to scholarly pursuits. Terpsichore is closely allied with Thea, goddess of art, and Himere, goddess of poetry; their temples sometimes share the same structure, particularly in smaller towns where they have a presence.
Goddess of Undeath
The Crone is typically depicted as a rotting corpse wearing a thin, bejeweled robe. She is patron of the undead and, because of this, generally hated in most lands though barely accepted because of her interest in necromancy in general. She encourages her followers to hoard information, the ultimate goal of that quest to defeat the aims of Cthos, god of the underworld, and avoid his judgment after death. Most of her living worshipers are wizards whose ultimate goal is to cheat death by becoming liches, the most prized of her faithful. Her priesthood tends to be small and secretive in most regions and it is generally assumed that she is accepted fully only in Thet by its undead tyrant. Because Tethys is the Duchess of Mystery of Necromancy, most temples of Abaris contain at least a shrine to the Crone and protect the identity of her worshippers.
Goddess of the Hearth
Thalia is one of the most respected gods, despite her somewhat narrow concerns. Her clergy are of moderate size but everpresent, with at least one priestess (male priests are rare) in even small villages. Her direct followers are few, composed mainly of household servants and cooks. Her most significant temples operate as schools for servants and cooks and graduates, both secular and ecclesiastic, are in demand across the world on the staff of nobles and wealthy merchants.
Though Thalia has a mostly subservient role in northern traditions, she is given high honors in the Aebasan Orthodoxy; the Celestial Council cannot meet unless she has built a fire at the center of their meeting chamber. In democratic regions of the south, it is commonplace to mirror this practice by requiring that a priestess of Thalia be present and having lit a similar fire whenever an elected body meets. In cities where Thalia is very prominent, the priestesses maintain a small fire that represents the soul of the city; legend states that should the fire go out, the city will fall soon thereafter.
God of Strength
Thallos, god of strength, encourages his followers to be strong in body and mind, willing to accept and overcome any challenge. He is strangely democratic in this belief, in that the strong should rule, regardless of heritage or title. His clergy tend to be small but influential in most lands, but are extremely prominent in Halgard, where Thallos is the national patron. Worshippers vary from laborers who seek to improve their lot in life to military commanders willing to accept the challenges of war. Though Phemos, God of Sport, is an ally, the friendly competitions between the two are legendary. Thallos’ gravest enemy is Ruminus, God of Disease, and to die of disease in one’s own bed is considered the worst of deaths to Thallean worshippers.
Thallos’ mother, Pelactere, Goddess of Rage, tricked Virtus, God of Courage, into lying with her intending to give birth to a god who would serve her, but Thallos rebelled against his mother, which has put their respective followers at odds.
God of Darkness
The Dweller in the Darkness
Little is known about the worship of the Unseen One; he charges his followers to live only at night, never revealing their true purposes or aims. It is presumed that most of his direct followers are assassins, though a periodic conjuror, attempting to discern the forbidden secrets of planar travel, has also been uncovered. Thanatos begat Zephyrus, god of nightmares, on Mania, goddess of madness, though he is more closely associated with his offspring (when he is associated with any deity at all) than his former mate.
Goddess of Art
Thea is the patron of art, particularly those using a physical medium, such as painting, sculpture and non-military architecture. She is a peaceful deity, encouraging her worshipers to avoid conflict where possible. Her priesthood tends to be politically significant in most regions where they exist, though active worship tends to be moderate, limited primarily to artisans, sculptors and builders. She encourages the creation of new forms of art and new ideas in general; many new inventions come from her followers or clergy.
God of Mischief
Themis is the patron of bandits and street urchins; he is generally reviled by most civilized nations as a pest. Though his priesthood is small, he encourages his vast following to enjoy the fruits of society, whether they be stolen on the road or in the streets. He is allied with Britomaris, god of thievery, who tends to focus more on organized crime and the individual burglar. Themis instead concentrates on corrupting the young in urban settings (who often later move on to the worship of Britomaris) and supporting bandits in more rural regions.
Themis’ most dire enemy is Alcyoneus, god of youth, who regularly entreats children to behave themselves and mind their parents. In the Danic Tradition, Themis is known as Lothae and is considered to be one of the central foils for the gods and the one whose deceptions will bring about the end of the world.
God of Age
Thryope is the god of aging and represents the final stage of moral life before death. He is typically portrayed as a curmudgeonly, cynical old man constantly seeking to bring misery to others. He shares an interest in disease with Ruminus, god of disease, but concentrates on diseases of old age, such as senility, arthritis and gout. His clergy is understandably small and his few worshippers tend to be those of extreme old age hoping to avoid his depredations. Thryope particularly despises those who refuse to acknowledge the wisdom of the aged or who seek to force new ideas on people, and thus encourages his followers to persecute those people whenever possible.
Thryope’s priests are invariably fallen priests of other religions who have become too embittered by age to follow their previous patron. His most prized clergy are those who once served Alcyoneous, God of Youth, though he holds no special enmity for that god.
Goddess of Vengeance
Tisiphone, along with Alecto, Goddess of Pain, and her sometimes lover, Megarea, Goddess of Jealousy, compose the Furies, who seek to bring violence upon the world for some unknown past grievance. Tisiphone is easily the most openly dark of the three, but she also has an overwhelming sense of justice... hers is not killing for the sake of killing, but killing to right a wrong. She is primarily worshiped by assassins and bounty hunters who agree with her violent sense of justice and, though they do often have a code that requires them to kill only those deserving... even if no one else agrees just what constitutes that.
The worship of Tisiphone is treated with suspicion at best in most lands, as her worshippers often work well outside the local legal system.
Goddess of Marriage
Veritas is the patron of marriage and, despite having few direct followers, her priesthood is involved in most regions as officials in marriage ceremonies. Because of their duties, the clergy tend to keep detailed records of marriages, births and deaths and can often be called upon when a historical question needs be answered. Veritas is also the patron of loyalty and oaths and her priests are sometimes called upon to validate a contract, particularly one that involves dowries or testaments. Veritas is wife herself to Ladon, the God of Work.
Veritas is generally a peaceful deity, except when it comes to those who are unrepentant on violating their marriage vows. A very few of her clergy have even taken it upon themselves to bring such people to justice using whatever means are at their disposal.
God of Courage
Virtus is the god of courage and one of the most popular of the militaristic deities. He encourages his worshippers to work together to achieve their common goals, but often gives greatest reward to those who can succeed on an individual basis. He has a strong interest in justice, though he is much more forgiving of those who have the courage to publicly admit their crimes than Meliboea or Aridnus. Virtus began Pavor, God of Travel, upon his wife, Adrasteia, Goddess of Rivers and Streams, and was forced to beget Thallos, God of Strength, upon Pelactere, Goddess of Rage. Even so, Virtus is more closely aligned with Thallos, to the point that most regions that respect Virtus will also pay homage to Thallos. Haleland in the east is a major center for the worship of Virtus in the Aebasan Tradition and his worshippers can be found throughout the region.
Though Virtan followers share many similar traits with followers of Vortumnus, the God of Chivalry, the two rarely ally with one another on religious grounds.
Virtus is known as Tyr in the Danic Tradition, where he is primarily known as a lawgiver.
God of Cities
Vitulus is patron of urban areas and the merchants who help them grow. He encourages his followers to work together in fair governance and, in the Aebasan tradition, is a strong supporter of Democracy. His priests are legion, advising city councils and even regional and national governments on the proper and just ways to govern their people. Most of this direct worshippers are engineers, particularly those involved in civic projects, such as the construction of roads, aqueducts, dams and mills. Vitulus is highly respected, even in darker lands, and generally only finds his worshippers proscribed in wild regions where the mark of civilization is unwelcome.
God of HonorThe Glorious
The God of Honor and Chivalry, worship of Vortumnus is at the heart of a schism in the Imperial Church. The Koramian Heresy, based on a tome found on a mystical flying ship in Koramia, states that Lord Ptharos surrendered his throne as king of the gods, recognizing his tendency towards tyranny, and bestowed the crown to Vortumnus, his great-grandson and youngest of the gods. The Imperial Church vehemently denies this and actively persecutes those who follow the Koramian belief.
Where the Koramian Heresy dominates (mainly in Duria and in Narbonne on Aurea), Vortumnus is celebrated as the regal defender of truth, justice and civilization. In much of the rest of Aurea, he is viewed as a minor diety of war often seen as far too restrictive in his rules of war for the common soldier to pray to. On the continent of Gallorea, he is Argistinese, the Warlord of Just Battle. There are remote cults that worship Vortumnus as Cambre, the Hunter, who travels the dark forests at night to strike down the wicked and kill demons, though the worshipers of Cambre have no real heirarchy or church organization.
God of the State
Zelos is God of the State and protector of stable governance, regardless of its form. In the Aebasan tradition, he is a staunch supporter of democracy, while in the Imperial Tradition he supports the rule of the Emperor. As Ptharos is often referred to as Grandfather of the Gods, Zelos is the Father of the Gods, having sired Ladon, God of Work, Meliboea, Goddess of Justice, Taygete, Goddess of Childbirth, and Thalia, Goddess of the Hearth. Because of his support of established governments, his clergy are typically accorded much respect and have great political power, despite having few direct worshippers. The authoritarian Holy See of Cambrecia is dedicated to the worship of Zelos.
God of Nightmares
The Black Rider
Zephyrus is a strange, mysterious deity whose servants torture the mortals of the world with bad dreams. Closely associated with his father, Thanatos, God of Darkness, Zephyrus’ aims are almost as obscure as those of his dark sire. There is no known priesthood dedicated to Zephyrus and only a handful of recorded instances of people taking him on as their patron. He is typically depicted riding a horned, black horse, with which he can ride from mind to mind, spreading terror wherever a man sleeps.
|This article is part of the Feyworld Sourcebook|
|Religion in Feyworld|
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