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Eilistraee

The meaning of «eilistraee»

Eilistraee, also referred to as "The Dark Maiden", is a fictional deity in the Forgotten Realms campaign setting of the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game. In the game world, she is a goddess in the drow pantheon, and her portfolios are song, dance, swordwork, hunting, moonlight and beauty.[1]

Eilistraee's name is pronounced as EEL-iss-TRAY-yee",[1] "eel-ISS-tray-ee",[2] "eel-iss-tray-yee"[3] or "eil-iss-tray-yee".[4]

In the Forgotten Realms campaign setting, Eilistraee is the daughter of Corellon Larethian and of Araushnee (who later took the name Lolth after being punished by Corellon), a free-spirited and kind-hearted goddess, with a fiery streak in her personality.[1][5] When, during her youth, a host of evil deities assaulted Arvandor (her home), Araushnee's treachery almost made her slay her own father. Even though she was cleared from any guilt, Eilistraee chose to share her mother's exile, because she knew that the drow would need her light and help in the dark times to come.[1][5] Since after the descent of the drow, in the present era of the setting, Eilistraee tries her best to be a mother goddess to her people and bring them the hope of a new life: she fights to lead them back to the lands of light, helping them to flourish and prosper in harmony with all other races, free from Lolth's tyranny.[1][5][6] Hers is an uphill battle, however, as her power is little and she is opposed by all the gods of the Dark Seldarine. But, despite having to overcome many hardships and setbacks, Eilistraee has never given up fighting for her people.[1]

In the 1370s DR, her conflict with her mother over the souls of the drow race ultimately led to Eilistraee's defeat and disappearance.[7] It lasted for about a century, until The Sundering (c. 1480s DR), when Eilistraee returned to life and to her followers.[8][9][10][11][note 2]

Eilistraee was first detailed in Ed Greenwood's The Drow of the Underdark (1991).[2] Before being detailed in published material, Eilistraee already existed in Ed Greenwood's original Forgotten Realms. When asked to create more drow deities, the author used this opportunity to make the Dark Dancer official.[12]

Her role in the cosmology of the Planescape campaign setting was described in On Hallowed Ground (1996).[13]

Eilistraee received a very detailed description in Demihuman Deities (1998).[1]

Eilistraee is described as one of the good deities that celestials can serve in the supplement Warriors of Heaven (1999).[14]

Eilistraee appears in 3rd edition in the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting book (2001),[3] and was further described in Faiths and Pantheons (2002).[4]

Eilistraee is one of the Forgotten Realms deities that made a reappearance during the event known as The Sundering.[8][9][11] She is mentioned as such in the novels Spellstorm[15] and Death Masks by Ed Greenwood.[10] In the D&D sourcebook Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide, Eilistraee receives a brief description, and is listed as one of the deities active in the post-Sundering era of the Forgotten Realms.[9] The Mordenkainen's Tome of Foes includes a full entry for Eilistraee.[16]

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