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Superstitions of the elves

Leanan

ElfQuest is full of elves who use a large variety of different magical abilities.

ElfQuest is also full of superstitious humans, from the Shaman of Gotara to the worshippers of Threksh't and so on.

But lately I've been thinking on another variety on the theme of magic: the superstitions of the elves - instances where they think something is magic, but it isn't (as far as we as readers know).

The obvious example is Skywise's unfailing faith in the magical properties of the Lodestone, which, when all is said, is after all just a magnet.

Related to that is the bit in EQ 1 where our stargazer makes a cord for his newly acquired Lodestone out of the hair of all his tribemates "so that it will be a talisman of luck for the whole tribe".

Another example is in Hidden Years, in the story about Rayek and Leetah's youth. A farmer tells little Leetah to "dance the grain up from the ground".

I am wondering if there are other such situations/beliefs? These were the only ones I could recall.

Discussion of elven superstitions is also welcome in this topic! What is their understanding of magic like, how their superstitions differ from those of the humans (if they even do), why did Wendy and Richard chose to let them have those misconceptions, etc.

Embala

Not exactly an example of superstition:

When the cubs are frightened by an eclipse Joyleaf tells them a tale of the daystar, Lifegiver, and the moon, Silverseed, recognizing and giving birth to Dawnbringer, the daughter-moon.

I don't think Joyleaf believes in it ... but she makes the children believe.

Leanan

I thought about mentioning that one, but, as you say, it isn't exactly a superstition. Still, it's something resembling it. Thanks for the input! 8->

RedheadEmber

Related to that is the bit in EQ 1 where our stargazer makes a cord for his newly acquired Lodestone out of the hair of all his tribemates "so that it will be a talisman of luck for the whole tribe".


Didn't really work that well, did it? :ar! didn't have much luck during that battle...





Embala said: When the cubs are frightened by an eclipse Joyleaf tells them a tale of the daystar, Lifegiver, and the moon, Silverseed, recognizing and giving birth to Dawnbringer, the daughter-moon.


And then the cubs went on to believe that the new eclipse would mean a third moon.

Leanan

RedheadEmber said: Didn't really work that well, did it? :ar! didn't have much luck during that battle...


Well... we humans won't necessarily stop believing in the supernatural things we think exist to protect us even if someone dies...

RedheadEmber

So... Skywise gotta start getting to work adding a few more hairs to his cord.

manga

There's also multiple instances of someone saying "Praise the High Ones!" or other such phrasing that would indicate some form of worship or ascribing diety-like powers to them. It makes a certain sense early in the Original Quest but seems a bit odd later when they know what the High Ones really are. Rayek in "Rogue's Curse" tells Ekuar to "pray High Ones" he can manage without sleep because after Winnowill's most recent trick, he's never going to sleep again.

Leanan

You're right, manga, that definitely counts as superstition. Maybe the bits in later parts of the quest were said 'out of habit' - Rayek and others were raised to think of the High Ones as godlike, and it became a habit to say one was praising them or praying to them? Much like a person raised to be religious might use religious phrases out of habit even after becoming an atheist?

manga

Or maybe with most of the High Ones dead, there is actually some real effects one can get by "praying" to their spirits? If those born of Recognition attract interested spirits, maybe there's a way to get those spirits to help?