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Sune (pronounced: /ˈsniSOO-nee[6][22]) was the greater goddess of beauty and passion in the Faerûnian pantheon.[8] Lady Firehair, as her symbol depicted,[7] was the goddess of beauty in all its forms; whether it be sights, sounds, smells, tastes, and feels, the experience of pleasure was the touch of Sune. The Lady of Love was the goddess of all love, including the more negative aspects like obsessions, murderous passions, and the tragedies that could be born from love,[26] but also of deeper connections, of matches destined and forbidden, as well the transformation of ugliness into beauty.[8]

Beauty is more than skin deep; it issues from the core of one's being and shows one's fair (or foul) face to the world.
— A Sunite saying.[8][27]

Description[]

When Sune appeared to the mortals of Faerûn she did so as a human female of unearthly beauty dressed in only a near-transparent gown of silk. She was known for her lustrous, impossibly long red hair, the color of which persisted regardless of any other permutations in her appearance, and which often assumed the appearance of flames. Aside from this, her physical manifestation would change from time to time. Her skin might be golden, mahogany, reddish, or ivory, and her eyes might be sky-blue, forest green, almond-shaped, or of darkest amber or honey, while also possessing ruby red plump lips.[25] She occasionally wore ruby gemstones in her hair.[28]

Personality[]

Sune was a benevolent goddess[22] that abhorred the destruction of beauty.[25] She thrived on the tenderest of emotions[17] and truly loved and protected her followers,[5] reserving her deepest love for the mortals who revered her.[17] She was also one of the most vain entities in the cosmos,[5] enjoying attention and sincere flattery while avoiding the horrific and boorish.[22]

The sometimes whimsical Princess of Passion alternated between deep passion and casual flirtation with others.[22] When she was truly interested in a person or god, she wholeheartedly believed in these deep-seated feelings, but although she was one of the most passionate beings in existence, her focus lasted only a short time (as long as the subject continued to be enticing) before she lost interest and moved on.[5]

Powers[]

To look upon Sune's avatar could very well end a battle before it began. Her looks, if unclothed, could kill if she so desired, a powerful form of death magic difficult to resist. Even when garbed however, she could enrapture anyone she wanted within 90 feet (27 meters). Such was her appearance that it was almost impossible to tear one's eyes away after so much as a glance, and none but immortals could resist at least getting a good look. Animals would never attempt to harm her, and upon seeing her no male being of any kind would either, the latter to the point that even thinking to do so was simply impossible.[4]

Sune could cast spells from all arcane schools and divine spheres, but her charm magic (including spells of the charm sphere and school of enchantment which affected emotions, beguiled, enthralled, commanded, persuaded, or otherwise worked similarly to charm person spells) were four times as potent and much harder to resist.[4]

Possessions[]

The silken sash Sune wore acted as a +5 whip, enchanted with chaotic, defending, keen, and shock properties.[22]

Realm[]

Sune shared a realm with various other goddesses, originally with just Tymora and Lliira, but later expanding the group to include Sharess and Waukeen. That realm was Brightwater, located in the outer plane of Arborea in the Great Wheel cosmology and a plane of its own in the World Axis cosmology. Brightwater was a well-settled realm devoted to beauty, among other things, all of which shined from every face and building; constant entertaining activities went on in Brightwater, and it was no less glamorous than Arvandor for its civilization.[9][29]

Brightwater was structured like a Material Plane city into wards or sectors, each a divine realm, with Waukeen's in the middle and the others arranged around it, and Sune's realm was known as the Heartfire Quarter.[9] Smaller, quieter, and much more private than most of Brightwater's other locales, the Heartfire Quarter consisted of small rooms and hidden courtyards, the night air filled with the aromas of incense and candle-light. The outer reaches were lined with festhalls, matchmaker shops and inns for young couples, and every street was marked with a monument to love's triumphs.[9][29]

Though devoted to the ideals of love, it was not without its dangers. Most paths were unexplored and crimes of passion were common, as were rumors (never proven) of succubi and incubi infiltrators. The only ones willing to dare the inner precincts were the stout of heart and petitioners seeking to merge with the goddess, the winding streets near the center said to destroy some forever and merge others into the realm.[29]

The Heartfire Quarter stood juxtaposed to Lliira's Quarter of Orange Lanterns, both geographically (being separated by Sharess's realm of Rapture) and philosophically. It was deeper than Lliira's domain of constant celebrations, a realm of beauty inhabited by those wanting more than just a party. It was a place of quiet mysteries whose contemplative denizens, drawn in by Sune's secretive smile, sought something beyond material gratification and even love. It was unclear what awaited those drawn to the center of the realm, often the adventuring sort who came after the delights of the other realms dimmed, but it was known what they sought: serenity, bliss, perfection and true passion.[9][29]

During the Spellplague, Sune moved Brightwater to Selune's realm, the Gates of the Moon. Most of the other goddesses joined her in her romantic city, though Tymora had her own area within the Gates known as the Great Wheel and Waukeen's Marketplace Eternal moved to Amaunator's realm.[17]

Relationships[]

Sune had been romantically linked with many members of the Faerunian pantheon in the many myths of the realms; for example she was said to have been smitten with Torm for his actions during the Time of Troubles,[22] and many deities, including Torm himself as well as Amaunator, had become smitten with her in turn. In regards to such matters, the Lady of Love was silmultaneously distant and flirtatious.[17]

Sune was served by both Lliira and Sharess and was allies with Milil, Lathander, and Selune, the latter of which was also a servant of Lady Firehair in the past before going her own way,[22] though they were still extremely friendly and cooperative.[30] She also gave her aid to Mystra in her struggle against Shar and the Shadow Weave, for she had earned the service of Sharess when she saved the demipower from being subsumed by Shar, and as such was considered an enemy by the Nightbringer. [22]

By her nature, it was difficult for any being to be angry at Sune for long, and so the goddess had no true enemies.[22] Those foes she did have included the Gods of Fury, whose functions destroyed many beautiful things both living and non-living.[25] She helped limit the destruction caused by the rages of their leader Talos,[5] and was envied by the Bitch Queen Umberlee for her beauty.[31] She also had no love for Talona, goddess of disease, or Tempus, god of battle, on similar grounds, although the latter considered her too flighty and irrelevant to be worth the conflict or even dislike.[22]

Outside of the Realms, Sune was considered a "backwater power with delusions of grandeur" by her deific peers, such as Freya, Aphrodite and Hanali Celanil, but otherwise they got on well together - Sune of course, believing that she was the most beautiful of all of them.[5]

Worshipers[]

Sune symbol

The holy symbol of Sune.

Main article: Church of Sune

Sune's clerics sought to bring beauty to the world in many forms, all of which were pleasing to the senses. They created great works of art, became patrons for promising actors, and imported exotic luxuries like satin and fine wines. Her followers also enjoyed looking beautiful, and hearing tales of romance. The stories ranged from star-crossed love, true love overcoming all else, to following one's heart.[32] The negative aspects of love, as would be expected, were downplayed and kept from public view in the interest of making the faith welcoming for all.[26]

Her temples usually held social salons and displayed mirrors for use by lay parishioners. Some of them even had public baths for the local populace.[32] Her shrines often stood on the corner of busy city streets. They would have a small ornate overhanging roof with a mirror underneath. They were used to check one's appearance while honoring Sune with prayer. Some shrines even held perfume and cosmetic items for those who could not afford such luxuries themselves.[33]

Orders[]

  • Sisters and Brothers of the Ruby Rose: A knightly order affiliated with the Church of Sune, made up of bards, fighters, and paladins. Their primary mission was to guard Sunite temples and holy sites, and occasionally accompany clerics doing good works or questing for something important to the Lady of Love. Initiation into the order was done by standing vigil in a temple of Sune for an entire night. If the goddess showed her favor by granting a vision or some other boon, the candidate was accepted into the order.[34]

Notable Sunites[]

History[]

Sune Symbol-5e

The holy symbol of Sune.

Sune's history was mostly told in myth regarding her various romances and flirtations with other gods.[4] Tales existed of her relationships with practically every god except Talos, Umberlee, Malar, Auril, Tempus, and Talona, whom Sune abhorred for their acts of destruction.[4]

During the Time of Troubles, Sune rescued Sharess from death at the hands of Shar and restored the corrupted deity to her original state before Shar's influence affected her.[37]

During the Spellplague, Sune's plane of Brightwater was destroyed, but Selûne invited Sune and her exarchs to join her in the Gates of the Moon. During this period of transition, it was revealed that many lesser powers of love in the Realms, most notably Hanali Celanil, were all aspects of Sune. Sune, along with Tyr and Lathander was one of the triumvirate of deities who declared that Cyric should be imprisoned for the apparent death of Mystra.[38]

Rumors & Legends[]

Some speculated that Sune was in fact the same or similar as the goddess Athena of the Olympian pantheon.[39][note 1]

Appendix[]

Notes[]

  1. Although the text says "Athena", it is more likely Venus or Aphrodite, as she is a goddess of love and beauty commonly depicted with red hair, while Athena is not. Furthermore, "Sune" is the final four letters of "Venus" reversed.

Appearances[]

Card Games
Magic: The Gathering (HBG)

Gallery[]

References[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Ed Greenwood, Jeff Grubb (August 1987). “Cyclopedia of the Realms”. In Karen S. Martin ed. Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (TSR, Inc.), p. 14. ISBN 0-88038-472-7.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Jeff Grubb and Ed Greenwood (1990). Forgotten Realms Adventures. (TSR, Inc), p. 31. ISBN 0-8803-8828-5.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Ed Greenwood, Julia Martin, Jeff Grubb (1993). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 2nd edition (revised), Running the Realms. (TSR, Inc), p. 48–49. ISBN 1-5607-6617-4.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc.), p. 149. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 Colin McComb (October 1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc.), p. 171. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 251. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. Edited by Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 65. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 Steve Kenson, et al. (November 2015). Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide. Edited by Kim Mohan. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 21, 36–37. ISBN 978-0-7869-6580-9.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 Richard Baker, James Wyatt (March 2004). Player's Guide to Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 146–147. ISBN 0-7869-3134-5.
  10. Troy Denning (February 1998). Crucible: The Trial of Cyric the Mad. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 36. ISBN 0-7869-0724-X.
  11. Troy Denning (February 1998). Crucible: The Trial of Cyric the Mad. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 30. ISBN 0-7869-0724-X.
  12. Troy Denning (February 1998). Crucible: The Trial of Cyric the Mad. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 37. ISBN 0-7869-0724-X.
  13. Troy Denning (February 1998). Crucible: The Trial of Cyric the Mad. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 160. ISBN 0-7869-0724-X.
  14. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc.), p. 151. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  15. Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. Edited by Jennifer Clarke Wilkes, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 130. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  16. Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford (2014). Player's Handbook 5th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 59–61, 294. ISBN 978-0-7869-6560-1.
  17. 17.0 17.1 17.2 17.3 17.4 Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. Edited by Jennifer Clarke Wilkes, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 63, 77, 80. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  18. Logan Bonner (August, 2009). “Domains in Eberron and the Forgotten Realms”. In Chris Youngs ed. Dragon #378 (Wizards of the Coast), p. 32.
  19. Rob Heinsoo, Logan Bonner, Robert J. Schwalb (September 2008). Forgotten Realms Player's Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 137. ISBN 978-0-7869-4929-8.
  20. Bruce R. Cordell, Christopher Lindsay (April 2006). Complete Psionic. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 11. ISBN 0-7869-3911-7.
  21. Sean K. Reynolds (2002-05-04). Deity Do's and Don'ts (Zipped PDF). Web Enhancement for Faiths and Pantheons. Wizards of the Coast. p. 7. Archived from the original on 2016-11-01. Retrieved on 2018-09-08.
  22. 22.00 22.01 22.02 22.03 22.04 22.05 22.06 22.07 22.08 22.09 22.10 Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. Edited by Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 65–67. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
  23. Richard Baker, James Wyatt (March 2004). Player's Guide to Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 189. ISBN 0-7869-3134-5.
  24. Hal Maclean (September 2004). “Seven Deadly Domains”. In Matthew Sernett ed. Dragon #323 (Paizo Publishing, LLC), p. 65.
  25. 25.0 25.1 25.2 25.3 Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 149–151. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  26. 26.0 26.1 Ed Greenwood/The Hooded One (2014-04-24). Questions for Ed Greenwood (2014). Candlekeep Forum. Retrieved on 2022-12-31.
  27. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc.), p. 150. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  28. BioWare (June 2002). Designed by Brent Knowles, James Ohlen. Neverwinter Nights. Atari.
  29. 29.0 29.1 29.2 29.3 Robert Lazzaretti (1994-07-01). “Arborea map”. In Michele Carter ed. Planes of Chaos (TSR, Inc), pp. 48–49. ISBN 1560768746.
  30. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc.), p. 135. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  31. Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 254. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  32. 32.0 32.1 Steve Kenson, et al. (November 2015). Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide. Edited by Kim Mohan. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 37. ISBN 978-0-7869-6580-9.
  33. Steve Kenson, et al. (November 2015). Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide. Edited by Kim Mohan. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 38. ISBN 978-0-7869-6580-9.
  34. Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc.), p. 151. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  35. Richard Lee Byers (April 2004). The Rage. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-3187-6.
  36. Troy Denning (October 2014). The Sentinel. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0786965436.
  37. Eric L. Boyd (September 1997). Powers & Pantheons. Edited by Julia Martin. (TSR, Inc.), p. 52. ISBN 978-0786906574.
  38. Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. Edited by Jennifer Clarke Wilkes, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 74. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  39. Ed Greenwood, Jeff Grubb (August 1987). “Cyclopedia of the Realms”. In Karen S. Martin ed. Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (TSR, Inc.), p. 18. ISBN 0-88038-472-7.

Connections[]

The Faerûnian Pantheon
Major Deities
AzuthBaneBhaalChaunteaCyricGondHelmIlmaterKelemvorKossuthLathanderLoviatarMaskMielikkiMyrkulMystra (Midnight) • OghmaSelûneSharShaundakulSilvanusSuneTalosTempusTormTymoraTyrUmberleeWaukeen
Other Members
AkadiAurilBeshabaDeneirEldathFinder WyvernspurGaragosGargauthGerronGrumbarGwaeron WindstromHoarIstishiaIyachtu XvimJergalLliiraLurueMalarMililNobanionThe Red KnightSavrasSharessShialliaSiamorpheTalonaTiamatUbtaoUlutiuValkurVelsharoon
The Netherese Pantheon
AmaunatorJannathJergalKozahMoanderMystrylSelûneSharSuneTargusTyche

Deities of the Post–Second Sundering Era
Ao the Overgod
Faerûnian Pantheon
Akadi | Amaunator | Asmodeus | Auril | Azuth | Bane | Beshaba | Bhaal | Chauntea | Cyric | Deneir | Eldath | Gond | Grumbar | Gwaeron | Helm | Hoar | Ilmater | Istishia | Jergal | Kelemvor | Kossuth | Lathander | Leira | Lliira | Loviatar | Malar | Mask | Mielikki | Milil | Myrkul | Mystra | Oghma | Red Knight | Savras | Selûne | Shar | Silvanus | Sune | Talona | Talos | Tempus | Torm | Tymora | Tyr | Umberlee | Valkur | Waukeen
The Morndinsamman
Abbathor | Berronar Truesilver | Clangeddin Silverbeard | Deep Duerra | Dugmaren Brightmantle | Dumathoin | Gorm Gulthyn | Haela Brightaxe | Laduguer | Marthammor Duin | Moradin | Sharindlar | Vergadain
The Seldarine
Aerdrie Faenya | Angharradh | Corellon | Deep Sashelas | Erevan | Fenmarel Mestarine | Hanali Celanil | Labelas Enoreth | Rillifane Rallathil | Sehanine Moonbow | Shevarash | Solonor Thelandira
The Dark Seldarine
Eilistraee | Kiaransalee | Lolth | Selvetarm | Vhaeraun
Yondalla's Children
Arvoreen | Brandobaris | Cyrrollalee | Sheela Peryroyl | Urogalan | Yondalla
Lords of the Golden Hills
Baervan Wildwanderer | Baravar Cloakshadow | Callarduran Smoothhands | Flandal Steelskin | Gaerdal Ironhand | Garl Glittergold | Nebelun | Segojan Earthcaller | Urdlen
Orc Pantheon
Bahgtru | Gruumsh | Ilneval | Luthic | Shargaas | Yurtrus
Mulhorandi pantheon
Anhur | Bast | Geb | Hathor | Horus | Isis | Nephthys | Osiris | Re | Sebek | Set | Thoth
Other gods of Faerûn
Bahamut | Enlil | Finder Wyvernspur | Ghaunadaur | Gilgeam | Lurue | Moander | Nobanion | Raven Queen | Tiamat



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