Dolphins a peaceful species of aquatic mammal plentiful in the waters of Abeir-Toril.[5]

Behavior[edit | edit source]

Dolphins were a highly intelligent species. They were even intelligent enough that, with some training and divine inspiration, they could become priests of some deities.[6]

Abilities[edit | edit source]

In addition to their eyes, dolphins viewed their surroundings by means of echolocation. A natural process of sending out an array of soundwaves that were reflected back as three-dimensional representations of their surroundings.[7]

Dolphins were generally capable of carrying or pulling around 120 pounds (54 kilograms) without becoming encumbered. The heaviest load they were capable of moving was around 360 pounds (160 kilograms).[6]

Combat[edit | edit source]

Dolphins were a rather peaceful species and generally would only attack if they or their young were threatened. When engaging in combat dolphins acted as organized units, taking commands from a central leader. In some cases they were willing to sacrifice their lives to protect the rest of their pod.[3]

Ecology[edit | edit source]

About 10% of dolphins were known to live in organized communities with other species, such as swordfish and narwhals, and would actively work to drive evil creatures out of their territory. Such areas also tended to be devoid of sharks and killer whales,[3] as they were natural enemies.[8]

Habitats[edit | edit source]

In Faerûn, dolphins could be found in the Sea of Fallen Stars, particularly the first 150 ft (46 m) depths.[9] They were one of the most populous creatures to inhabit it.[10]

Beyond Toril, there existed a single species of dolphin on the planet Athas[11] and schools of dolphins on the planet Karpri that both possessed innate telepathy.[12] Those on the planet Athas were additionally all psionic wild talents, but didn't have the discipline for formal study of full psionics.[11]

Languages[edit | edit source]

Dolphins communicated in a series of clicks and whistles. They could also speak Serusan, as that language was in part an amalgamation of their own.[13]

Relationships[edit | edit source]

Dolphins generally had tight bonds with aquatic elves and their elderly were some of the most respected members of sea elf communities.[14] Particularly old and intelligent dolphins could be found living with them in Myth Nantar.[citation needed] They rarely interacted with tritons for long periods of time unless they showed some sense of fun.[15]

Some water genasi were known to keep dolphins as pets.[16] They were also commonly found as animal companions of aquatic rangers[17][6] and bards.[6]

They also held a distant interest in humans and would warn sailors of pirates or other aquatic threats, such as merfolk and sahuagin, and in some cases even come to their aid. They held great enmity towards the sahuagin as a whole, viewing them as a threat, and would often raid their communities and destroy their eggs.[3]

When traveling with a group of aquatic or seafaring adventurers they were known to identify with the group as a whole, rather than any one individual. They were rarely noted as abandoning such groups, even in situations where it meant saving their own lives.[18]

Dolphins were sacred to the elven god Deep Sashelas as well as the deities Istishia, Valkur,[19] and Trishina. Priests of Deep Dashelas were said to have a duty to protect endangered dolphins and were required to have one as a companion in order to rise within the priesthood. However, dolphins were particularly noted as taking up the role of priests for Trishina and had a special section of Thalasia relegated for them by the goddess.[20]

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • The helm of underwater action had images of dolphins carved into it.[21]
  • Some sea elves were known to craft and wear jewelry that was shaped like dolphins.[22]
  • Around the Sea of Fallen Stars it was believed that a dolphin swimming alongside a ship was a sign of good luck. Consequently, around that region superstition dictated that killing a dolphin was bad luck.[23]
  • They could be found in the Bay of Dancing Dolphins in Dambrath where they could be seen performing the Dance of the Dolphins every evening at dusk. This display would attract spectators from all around Faerûn. The locals thought the dolphins were responsible for the calm waters of the bay.[24] They were allies of the triton that lived in a hidden underwater city.[25]
  • A silver statue of a leaping dolphin crowned Dolphin's Leap, a temple to Valkur in the city of Velen.[26]

Appendix[edit | edit source]

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Adventures
Polyhedron #87, "Eye of the Leviathan"Dungeon #64: "Grotto of the Queen"
Comic books
The Dragon in the Dale
Video Games
Referenced only
Neverwinter Nights: Darkness over Daggerford

Further Reading[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Mike Mearls, et al. (November 2016). Volo's Guide to Monsters. Edited by Jeremy Crawford, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 208. ISBN 978-0786966011.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Skip Williams, Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook (July 2003). Monster Manual v.3.5. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 278. ISBN 0-7869-2893-X.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Doug Stewart (June 1993). Monstrous Manual. (TSR, Inc), p. 59. ISBN 1-5607-6619-0.
  4. Gary Gygax (December 1977). Monster Manual, 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), p. 29. ISBN 0-9356-9600-8.
  5. Tom Prusa (1993). The Shining South. (TSR, Inc), p. 2. ISBN 1-56076-595-X.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Steven E. Schend (1999). Sea of Fallen Stars. (TSR, Inc), p. 42. ISBN 0-7869-1393-2.
  7. Steven E. Schend (1999). Sea of Fallen Stars. (TSR, Inc), p. 114. ISBN 0-7869-1393-2.
  8. Steven E. Schend (1999). Sea of Fallen Stars. (TSR, Inc), p. 54. ISBN 0-7869-1393-2.
  9. Steven E. Schend (1999). Sea of Fallen Stars. (TSR, Inc), p. 38. ISBN 0-7869-1393-2.
  10. Steven E. Schend (1999). Sea of Fallen Stars. (TSR, Inc), p. 80. ISBN 0-7869-1393-2.
  11. 11.0 11.1  (1998). Monstrous Compendium Annual Volume Four. (TSR, Inc), p. 24. ISBN 0-7869-1212-X.
  12. Dale "slade" Henson (April 1991). Realmspace. Edited by Gary L. Thomas, Karen S. Boomgarden. (TSR, Inc), p. 33. ISBN 1-56076-052-4.
  13. Steven E. Schend (1999). Sea of Fallen Stars. (TSR, Inc), p. 55. ISBN 0-7869-1393-2.
  14. Steven E. Schend (1999). Sea of Fallen Stars. (TSR, Inc), p. 60. ISBN 0-7869-1393-2.
  15. Steven E. Schend (1999). Sea of Fallen Stars. (TSR, Inc), p. 101. ISBN 0-7869-1393-2.
  16. Reynolds, Forbeck, Jacobs, Boyd (March 2003). Races of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 129. ISBN 0-7869-2875-1.
  17. Rick Swan (1993). The Complete Ranger's Handbook. Edited by Elizabeth Danforth. (TSR, Inc), p. 31. ISBN 1560766344.
  18. James Wyatt (March 2000). “Animal Henchmen”. In Dave Gross ed. Dragon #269 (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 26–34.
  19. Sean K. Reynolds (2002-05-04). Deity Do's and Don'ts (Zipped PDF). Wizards of the Coast. pp. 10–15. Archived from the original on 2016-11-01. Retrieved on 2018-09-08.
  20. Carl Sargent (May 1992). Monster Mythology. (TSR, Inc), pp. 87, 94. ISBN 1-5607-6362-0.
  21. Mike Mearls, Kate Welch (May 2019). Ghosts of Saltmarsh. Edited by Kim Mohan. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 153. ISBN 978-0-7869-6686-8.
  22. Anne Gray McCready et al. (March 1994). Elves of Evermeet. (TSR, Inc), p. 28. ISBN 1-5607-6829-0.
  23. Steven E. Schend (1999). Sea of Fallen Stars. (TSR, Inc), p. 16. ISBN 0-7869-1393-2.
  24. Thomas Reid (October 2004). Shining South. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 95. ISBN 0-7869-3492-1.
  25. Thomas Reid (October 2004). Shining South. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 96. ISBN 0-7869-3492-1.
  26. Ed Greenwood (2000). Volo's Guide to Baldur's Gate II. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 94. ISBN 0-7869-1626-5.
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