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The Celtic pantheon, formerly known as the Tuatha De Danann,[1] was a loose pantheon of gods,[3] one of the most adaptable and influential in all the Outer Planes.[1] A number of its members were known of or worshiped in the Realms.[4]

Description[]

The members of this pantheon largely resembled humans.[3] They had a reputation among some as being dark and brooding, but in actuality were much more carefree compared to most pantheons. To varying extents its members all loved beauty, knowledge, and life. They also highly valued cunning, hospitality, song, and strength. But above all they preached freedom of choice to their followers[1] and respect for nature.[3]

As a whole the members of this pantheon were incredibly inclusive and tolerant of others. This was to such an extent that they didn't even demand total loyalty from their worshipers and they were willing to welcome most any deity into their pantheon, so long as they shared those aforementioned basic attitudes.[1]

When it came to establishing themselves on other worlds, the Celtic gods were willing to adapt themselves to fit niches similar to their own portfolios.[1]

Base of Operations[]

With some exceptions, the members of this pantheon chiefly resided in the divine realm of Tir na Og in the Outlands, with each of them maintaining a separate divine realm within its borders that had their own peculiarities.[1]

The deity Arawn resided on the island of Annwn, amidst a vast ocean in Niflheim, where the pantheon's disreputable petitioners were sent. Belenus and Brigantia jointly ruled the divine realm of Isles of the Blessed in Elysium, where heroes who sought to do good in their lives were sent.[5] Math Mathonwy resided in Corriegrave, a divine realm on the Khalas layer of Gehenna.[6] Diancecht[7] and Lugh were wanderers with no set realm of their own. And Manannan Mac Lir resided in the realm of Tir fo Thuinn — close to the realm of Tir na Og,[8] it was part of a lake at the base of the Spire.[9]

Notable Members[]

Arawn
The Celtic god of life and death.[5]
Cerunnos
Also known as the Master of the Hunt, was an archfey[10] and the Celtic god of hunting, who brought a haunting phenomenon known as the Wild Hunt to any land where the pantheon was worshiped.[11] Or sicked it upon anyone foolish enough to muck about with the freedom of Tir na Og.[12]
Creidhne
Once a lesser deity of craftsmen, this god became a proxy of Goibhniu after they gave up their power to raise him to an intermediate power.[8][note 1]
Belenus
The Celtic god of heat, the light, and the sun.[5]
Brigantia
The Celtic goddess of livestock and rivers.[5]
Daghdha
Also known as the dozen king, was the Celtic god of weather and the head of the pantheon.[3][12]
Diancecht
The Celtic god of healing and medicine.[7]
Dunatis
The Celtic god of mountains.[7]
Goibhniu
The Celtic god of healing and smithing.[7] He was once part of a trinity of craftsmen gods with Creidhne and Luchta.[8]
Herne
A corrupted incarnation of the Master of the Hunt.[13][14]
Luchta
Once a lesser deity of craftsmen, this god became a proxy of Goibhniu after they gave up their power to raise him to an intermediate power.[8][note 1]
Lugh
The Celtic god of art, commerce, and travel.[8]
Manannan Mac Lir
The Celtic god of the ocean.[8]
Math Mathonwy
The Celtic god of magic.[6]
Oghma
The Celtic god of art and knowledge.[15][16]
Rosmerta
The relatively unknown Celtic goddess of wealth[8] and material possessions.[1]
Silvanus
The Celtic god of forests and nature.[15][16]

History[]

According to ancient legends, the Celtic pantheon began with many members being born to a goddess known as Danu on a fabled island, but no evidence of her existence could be found. The Believers of the Source claimed that she had likely moved on to a form of existence even greater than that of the deities, perhaps becoming an overgod.[12]

Other legends claimed that the Celtic gods sprang forth from nature itself.[1][17]

History on Toril[]

Sometime around -4370 DR, a devastating plague occurred on Toril in the land of Raurin, ravaging the ruling Imaskar Empire. Four years later,[18] the mages of the Imaskar Empire sought to revitalize their population by opening two great gates to another world, then kidnapping from it numerous humans to serve as their slaves.[19] Eventually their empire would crumble in -2488 DR,[20] but survivor states would emerge in its wake, such as the kingdom of Bakar.[21] The people of this kingdom built a mighty city, Medinat Muskawoon, that housed temples to the gods of their ancestors' original world. Among them was a temple to the Celtic god Dunatis.[22]

Later in Toril's history, a wave of planar immigrants came from the same world that the Imaskar Empire had taken humans from. They were folk from a rugged land with a culture tied to nature, the sea, and the warrior history of its dozen-king greater god. These brought their own societies and faiths,[19] the worship of Celtic deities like Herne and Oghma,[23] and settled around the time of the rise of Netheril.[19]

In later centuries Oghma would go on to join the Adama and Faerûnian pantheons,[24] Sylvanus would join him in the latter Faerûnian,[25] and Herne would go on to be worshiped by orc tribes in northwest Faerûn's High Forest.[13][26]

Relationships[]

When establishing themselves on Prime Material worlds, the Celtic pantheon was known to take in deities from a world's local pantheon or to join those pantheons themselves. This thereby ensured the Celtic pantheon's own continued growth and survival.[1]

The location of Tir na Og attracted some tension (for the reason why, see the "Worshipers" section), but the pantheon did its best to remain neutral in planar affairs, albeit with some exceptions.[27] Arawn for example would interfere with the Blood War when necessary to protect her divine realm from the fiends.[28]

Some individuals in this Pantheon were not directly worshiped on Toril, though they did have relations with deities that were. For instance, many of them were on good terms with Sheela Peryroyl.[29][30][31][note 2] And Daghda was fervent friends with trickster deities, such as Erevan Ilesere and Garl Glittergold,[12] and was supportive of the Gnome pantheon as a whole.[32]

The Olympian pantheon were considered their primary rivals due to its opposing, insular nature.[2] The head of the Celtic pantheon, Daghdha, thought the Olympians weren't any match for them and that they were too full of themselves and Zeus forbid the Olympians from fraternizing with the Celtic gods. Though not all members of either pantheon felt animosity. For example, Goibhniu had a secret friendship with Apollo[33] and often compared notes or skills with Hephaestus, though the latter was sometimes his rival.[8]

Worshipers[]

The Celtic pantheon was as often served by druids as by clerics, for they were closely aligned with the forces of nature.[17] Their religious services were performed in groves consecrated by the planting of holly and mistletoe.[3]

Due to Tir na Og being situated in the Outlands, a plane that touched all of the Outer Planes, the divine power of this pantheon's priests wasn't hindered anywhere in the Great Wheel. This made them quite popular among planar travelers. The location,[27] as well as the pantheon's adaptable and inclusive nature, all contributed to them being quite prominent across the Prime Material plane.[1]

Some halfling druids on Toril worshiped Daghdha, Lugh, or Sylvanus. Though this was not a common practice.[29][30][31][note 2]

On the Elemental Plane of Water, Manannan Mac Lir was one of the many ajami ocean gods that marids had a shrine to within the Citadel of Ten Thousand Pearls.[34]

Appendix[]

Notes[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Nowhere is it stated that Creidhne and Luchta were lesser deities. However, because Goibhniu was previously listed in 1st edition's Deities and Demigods as a lesser deity, his rise in status in the 2nd edition source On Hallowed Ground is interpreted to mean that Creidhne and Luchta were both equivalently lesser deities.
  2. 2.0 2.1 In the Forgotten Realms Campaign Set boxset, the sourcebook Cyclopedia of the Realms states on page 16 that information given in the sourcebooks Unearthed Arcana's and Legends & Lore regarding the demihuman deities can be considered Realms canon, so long as the information does not contradict anything established in Forgotten Realms sources.

External Links[]

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the following links do not necessarily represent the views of the editors of this wiki, nor does any lore presented necessarily adhere to established canon.

References[]

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 66. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 114. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 James Ward, Robert J. Kuntz (August 1980). Deities & Demigods. Edited by Lawrence Schick. (TSR, Inc.), p. 26. ISBN 0-935696-22-9.
  4. Jeff Grubb, Ed Greenwood and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (Cyclopedia of the Realms). (TSR, Inc), p. 17. ISBN 0-8803-8472-7.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 69. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 74. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 70. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 71. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  9. Jeff Grubb (May 1995). A Player's Primer to the Outlands. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc.), p. 31. ISBN 0-7869-0121-7.
  10. Ed Greenwood (06-11-2021). Celtic pantheon (Tweet). theedverse. Twitter. Archived from the original on 6-12-2021. Retrieved on 6-12-2021.
  11. James Ward, Robert J. Kuntz (August 1980). Deities & Demigods. Edited by Lawrence Schick. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 30–31. ISBN 0-935696-22-9.
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 68. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  13. 13.0 13.1 Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 105. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  14. Jennell Jaquays (1988). The Savage Frontier. (TSR, Inc), p. 27. ISBN 0-88038-593-6.
  15. 15.0 15.1 Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 75. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  16. 16.0 16.1 Jeff Grubb, Ed Greenwood and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (Cyclopedia of the Realms). (TSR, Inc), pp. 13–14. ISBN 0-8803-8472-7.
  17. 17.0 17.1 Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford (2014). Player's Handbook 5th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 297. ISBN 978-0-7869-6560-1.
  18. Brian R. James, Ed Greenwood (September 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. Edited by Kim Mohan, Penny Williams. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 18, 26. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 Eric L. Boyd (1997). Powers and Pantheons. (TSR, Inc), pp. 2, 94. ISBN 0-7869-0657-X.
  20. Brian R. James, Ed Greenwood (September 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. Edited by Kim Mohan, Penny Williams. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 31. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  21. David Cook (1990). The Horde (Volume I). (TSR, Inc), p. 28. ISBN 978-0880388689.
  22. Tracy Hickman, Laura Hickman, Philip Meyers, Peter Rice, William John Wheeler (May 1987). Desert of Desolation. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 101–102. ISBN 978-0880383974.
  23. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 105. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  24. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 131. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  25. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 145. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  26. slade, et al. (April 1996). “The Wilderness”. In James Butler ed. The North: Guide to the Savage Frontier (TSR, Inc.), p. 14. ISBN 0-7869-0391-0.
  27. 27.0 27.1 Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 67. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  28. Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 42. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  29. 29.0 29.1 Gary Gygax (August, 1985). Unearthed Arcana (1st edition). (TSR, Inc.), p. 115. ISBN 0880380845.
  30. 30.0 30.1 Jeff Grubb, Ed Greenwood and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (Cyclopedia of the Realms). (TSR, Inc), p. 16. ISBN 0-8803-8472-7.
  31. 31.0 31.1 Roger E. Moore (March 1982). “The Gods of the Halflings”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #59 (TSR, Inc.), p. 52.
  32. Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 106. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  33. Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), pp. 118–119. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  34. Wolfgang Baur (November 1993). Secrets of the Lamp. Genie Lore. (TSR, Inc.), p. 32. ISBN 978-1560766476.

Connections[]

The Celtic Pantheon
Celtic powers who have influenced the Forgotten Realms