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(Gold Elves or Sun Elves) Sun elves are by some measure of accounts, easily the most haughtiest of all the elven races. The majority of the sun elves live either on Evermeet or in Evereska. Magic and history is in their blood. The great elven empires of the past were often founded or lead by sun elves, not the least of which is the legendary Myth Drannor. They are renowned for their work and skill in magic, both arcane and divine magic.
Character and Outlook
Gold elves believe themselves to be the chosen defenders of elven culture and tradition, selected specifically for the task by Corellon Larethian himself. They take this role very seriously, throwing themselves into their chosen tasks with verve and enthusiasm. Gold elf artisans are methodical, careful individuals who will labor for years on relatively simple items such as brooches or rings. Armorers craft each weapon or piece of armor with painstaking precision. Warriors train endlessly with single-minded devotion. Clerics study the words of the gods and pray constantly for guidance. The Gold elves are easily the most arrogant of the subraces, because of an inbred belief that they are the chosen elven defenders. There is also an undercurrent of belief (rarely spoken aloud) that they are the only real elves, and that the other subraces have somehow turned away from true elven society. This prejudice is often well hidden, but it is there nonetheless.
As the long-lived elves follow many different paths during their lifespan, the average Gold elf will be a multi-talented individual, having given the full measure of devotion to each one of his or her chosen paths. This willful devotion takes time, and Gold elves will not have as many different skills or professions as their Silver elf cousins. This perhaps is the most significant difference between humans and Gold elves. More than any of the other Tel'Quessir subraces, the Gold elves. longevity has changed their outlook and their very means of thinking. Patience and thoughtfulness dominate every aspect of the Gold elves. outlook. Actions are rarely taken without considerable thought, discussion, and consideration, and they never hurry. The only exception to this is in combat, when quick action is required. The rest of the time, the Ar'Tel'Quessir are slow and methodical, patient and endlessly thoughtful, in stark contrast to relatively quick-acting, short-lived humans.
Gold elf clothing is magnificent, if understated. Cool colors such as blue and green are favored, as is white, although white is often worn as a color of mourning as well. Decorations in the forms of embroidered hems and collars, knotwork patterns, and naturalistic runes are common, but kept subtle so that they will not interfere with the overall harmony of a garment. Jewelry is also kept simple, with unadorned headbands and rings being most common. Earrings, and bracelets decorated with complex patterns are sometimes worn, but these are often considered overly ostentatious and excessive.
All clothing and jewelry are painstakingly crafted in typical Gold elf fashion, and even the rudest cloak or tunic made by the Ar'Tel'Quessir would fetch a hefty price in Faerûn. Armor and weapons are invariably works of art, carried proudly into battle, and often inscribed with small versions of ancient runes or elven heraldry. The links on some famous suits of elven chain, for example, are inscribed with prayers, invocations, or quotations from religious texts. The mail of the hero Tharaefellin was crafted completely from such links. Gold elves make use of the otherwise rare elven plate armor, as well. Suits of this type of armor are likewise inscribed with runes, designs, and quotations, chased and decorated in gold, silver, or brass, and individually fitted to each wearer. Some suits of enchanted plate worn by ancient heroes still exist, but many of these were lost on Faerûn, and the Gold elves have taken steps to retrieve them.
Art, Music, and Literature
Gold elf poetry and art are simple, yet graceful, incorporating many of the traditional natural motifs, combined with elven symmetrical designs somewhat reminiscent of the complex knot-patterns of Moonshae artisans. Many artists are also wizards who use elven magic to shape, carve, and polish natural objects, much in the same way as elven buildings are constructed. Gold elven poetry and song are as slow and solemn as one might expect. Tales of ancient battles, songs of the gods, and stories of heroic individuals are popular, but these are more often than not sad sagas with tragic endings. Gold elf minstrels are an important part of society. They wander the island, bringing news and exchanging songs and stories. The harp, lute, and the shalaquin (a long-necked elven instrument that is played by plucking or strumming while changing the tension of the strings with a ratcheted wheel) are all favored instruments.
Faith and the Gods
Religion and faith infuse every aspect of Gold elf society. As the chosen representatives of all that is good and beautiful in elven culture (in their own eyes, at least), the Ar'Tel'Quessir constantly give thanks and pay homage to the Seldarine. Each work of art, each poem, each song, is dedicated first and above all others to the Seldarine, and second to Queen Amlaruil. Most elven priests are of Ar'Tel'Quessir extraction. Gold elf religious ceremonies and processions are long, drawn out, and.to both myself and my Silver elf friends.deadly dull. Exuberance in the form of loud voices, merry songs, or joyful worship is considered shockingly inappropriate, and quiet chanting or solemn intonation is the order of the day when Gold elves join together in worship.
The Ar-Tel.Quessir observe a rigid hierarchy among the gods, with the supreme deity, Corellon Larethian, at its head and his consort, Sehanine, beside him. Various messengers and demigods serve the Seldarine, but all are under the direct leadership of Corellon Larethian, and all pay him obeisance. The goddess Angharradh, considered to be equal to Corellon Larethian by the Silver elves, is considered to be a misinterpretation of the other three elven goddesses, or a minor deity of the Teu'Tel.Quessir, whose importance has been exaggerated.
Relations with Others
Gold elves feel affection toward their Silver elf brethren, but this is often couched in somewhat patronizing terms, which annoys the Teu- Tel.Quessir. Feeling that their Silver cousins are flighty, chaotic, and irreverent, Gold elves often strive to return them to the proper path with stern lectures and fatherly advice. For their part, the Silver elves laugh and ignore such treatment. The Gold elves admire the Green elves of the forests, feeling that they embody the true primitive spirit of their elven ancestors. Relations between the two groups are good, but the Green elves. reclusive nature makes direct contact relatively rare. I was privileged to attend a celebration of Faerieluck on Evermeet, in which I saw the normally-reserved Gold elves frolicking and cavorting with their Green elf cousins in a manner that even the most free-spirited Silver elf would have found shocking.
Gold elves' prejudice toward humans is quite severe. It is much more obvious than that of the relatively friendly Silver elves. Many Gold elves who now live on Evermeet felt the weight of human hatred and persecution directly, and so may be excused for their dislike of humans. Even after my adoption as a Sha'Quessir, I received many black looks from Gold elves, and was sometimes treated with disdain and hostility. Most Gold elves seem to bear something of a chip on their shoulder, and it may not entirely be as a result of their treatment at the hands of humans.
Game Rule Information
Elf (sun), Evermeet, the High Forest, the North, Silverymoon, the Western Heartlands.
Gift of Tongues.
Racial Prestige Classes:
Bladesinger, Elven High Mage.
From the Elves of Evermeet sourcebook. Page 15-19