Theyalan Exegesis

From: Peter Metcalfe (
Date: Fri 20 Feb 1998 - 05:56:07 EET

Joerg Baumgartner:

I've hived this of into a seperate post.

>>>Theyalan meaning "from the Dawn Council", not "Orlanthi" or even

Me>>You are wrong in your use of Theyalan, both in meaning and application.

>Not at all. I would have said Heortling or Orlanthi if I meant those. Give
>me a good one word adjective for members of the culture the Unity Council
>created at the Dawn, and I'll use that, otherwise that's "Theyalan".

The Unity Council created no culture. It was an alliance of several
cultures. An elf or dwarf or troll cannot be a theyalan or even
have the same culture as the humans.

>Human Theyalan culture includes Esrolia (not any more Heortling), Aramites,
>Islanders, and Caladrans. To call all of these "Orlanthi" is more misleading
>than to call them Dawn People...

Why not simply bite the bullet and admit that the Esrolians and
Caladranders are no longer Orlanthi? I believe the Aramites
are still Orlanthi worshippers in the first age but have ceased
to do so when they interbred with Uz to become the Tusk Riders.

>>'Theyalan' has consistently been used to refer to the ancient heortling
>>culture in whatever sources we have whether in KoS or G:CotHW.

>Check it, please. Especially Genertela Book p.45 (Culture) and Players Book
>p.15 which applies "Orlanthi" to Esrolia and Caladraland. Not all Theyalans
>are Orlanthi, let alone Heortlings.

The Orlanthi themselves have a consistent usage for Theyalans
to wit:

        'After the first sunrise the whole world lived in harmony.
        The People who were present at the first Dawn were so overjoyed
        at the success of their gods that they joined together into
        the Theyalan Council, named after Theya, Goddess of the Dawn.
        For many years they spread throughout the mortal world,
        bringing news of their gods to people who were still in hiding.

        After many years they had discovered many peoples, and
        especially one whch claimed they did not owe friendship
        to Orlanth, or to his people.'
                                KoS p91.

It seems the Theyalan council is not the World Council but a subsidary
council composed of the Heortling tribes.

        'In ancient times, approximately from 575 to 1042 lived a
        people who were friends with dragons and draconic kin. No
        one before them had done this (except the Theyalans who
        were friends with everyone and so did not last too long).'
                                KoS p180

        'The Theyalans recognized that Yelm, the Dara Happan Great
        God, was the manifestation of their own Emperor, an enemy
        of Orlanth. The Orlanthi also realized that Yelm was also
        the sun god.'
                                KoS p196

Thus Theyalans = Dawn Age Heortlings from the viewpoint of a lot of
modern Orlanthi.

Looking at the Genertela: Players Book:

        'The barbarians of Glorantha are mostly of the _Theyalan_
        culture. The name was given by the God Learners and was
        taken from the native name for the Goddess of the Dawn,
        Theya, because the SEMINAL (My Caps - PHM) culture was
        important in the Dawn Age.'
                                Genertela Player's Book p13.

The God Learners acknowledge that there was a specific culture
in the first age and use the term to refer to a _class_ of
related cultures.

>And that's only 3rd Age use, when the original meaning has been largely

And you were using it to refer to Elves in the First Age! Thus
you were using it _wrongly_ in _meaning_.

- --Peter Metcalfe


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