Negeé, Goddess of War, is the matron goddess of the great Drow City-State of Negeémiliel of the subterranean world of Kazrrad, beneath the Southern Nohalion Mountains of the continent of Aels. Service to Negeé is a driving force in the lives of tens of thousands of women who serve as her Acolytes.
Negeé is generally portrayed as a very tall drow woman, with very long hair and ears, and with two sets of eyes, one atop the other on her face, and a fifth one on the center of her forehead.
Negeé in MythEdit
Negeé and GenaiEdit
Negeé was consort of Genai
Consorts and ChildrenEdit
Semi-divine/ Mortal Offspring
Negeé played a dominant role, presiding over the Negeél and later Negeémi dark pantheon. She became mother of many of the heroes and was featured in many of their local cults of Negeé. Thought the Negeémi goddess of war was a god of war like her other war gods and goddesses counterparts of other dark and light elves, she was also the supreme cultural artifact; in some senses, she was the embodiment of the Negeémi religious beliefs and the archetypical Negeémi deity.
When worship of Negeé began is unknown, but Llurth Negeél, her first namesake city in Kazrrad, was founded sometime around or shortly after 12.000 b.a.H.
Speculation: It might be conjectured that as a war deity, worship began around 13.000 b.a.H. during the drow drive towards building their ancient empire in Aels?
Negeé's First CityEdit
Llurth Negeél prospered, and became the leading drow city-state as of 10.000 b.a.H., apparently much to the chagrin of its rival cities. The War of the 13 Cities was a series of conflicts that would see all the other drow states in a coalition against Llurth Negeél. Despite this adversity, the city would continue to prosper for centuries, beating back its opposition. Eventually, though, Llurth Negeél would be overcome by being boxed in and unable to adequately grow as its rivals did.
For whatever reason, Llurth Negeél was much hated and the coalition of its adversaries were unrelenting even when it became clear that Llurth Negeél was no longer capable of being a threat. Around the year 7.000 b.a.H., the city would be destroyed and most of the population slain, survivors being enslaved, and reviled as Negeél. Many of these new slaves going to serve in the city-state of Erehel-Sinu.
- Speculation: Perhaps the priestesses of the city had some magical technique that awed and frightened the other drow? Making the Negeé priestesses an ongoing threat? Few specifics can be known of this long era of time, of the drow beginnings, their continental empire, and their defeat and establishment and long struggles with each other in the depths of Kazrrad. Most historical recordings of this era are of events that seem more like legends than facts.
For thousands of years, the Negeél would exist as a hated group of subservient drow in the midst of their fellow drow, the descendants of their conquerors. It might well be that it wasn't faithfulness to Negeé that kept them together as a people, but the unremitting disdain of their mistresses? Whether her namesake people were hated or not, it is interesting that Negeé continued to be worshipped in the polytheistic pantheon of the victorious Erehel drow, albeit as a minor war goddess.
Needing to expand as well, due to fear of the Nortunk dwarves, the city of Erehel-Sinu had to bridge a 'bottomless' crevasse. In 2440 b.a.H. they dispatched Erehel engineers and a large number of Negeél workers. The bridge was successfully and quickly constructed at the cost of no small number of Negeél slaves, the void becoming known as the Abyss of Doom.
Second City of NegeéEdit
After almost 30 centuries, the bridge and its defending citadel had grown into a city, and the Erehel continued to rule as aristocrats, but were surrounded by Negeél commoners. The Negeél were now granted many rights, so many, that it alarmed the parent city of Erehel-Sinu, but they were still well under the privileges of the Erehel class.
When independence of the colony city had been achieved in the year 480 a.a.H., most of the old government and trappings of the Erehel elites had been swept away. No more aristocracy by birth, no more gladiatorial contests, and Negeé would become the new chief deity in the local pantheon. Even so, much of the divisions between the Erehel and Negeél had been eased by this time, so much so, that large numbers of the Erehel population had supported the bid for freedom from Erehel-Sinu, and many had been 'folded' into the ranks of Negeé's new acolytes, a meritocracy based on ability who would evolve to become the new elites of the city.
- Speculation: It is possible that the Erehel that joined with the leading forces in the newly independent colony city would unwittingly be a 'poison pill' that would turn the 'meritocracy' into a new aristocracy in all but name? Acolytes usually come from families of past acolytes, and only acolytes may become citizens of the city.
In any case, the terms of Erehel and Negeél would virtually disappear sometime after independence. The Acolyte class had become the new elites, their political term for each other is simply "citizens". By the Middle Human Age, the old city of Erehel-Sinu had fallen under vassalage of Negeémiliel. Whether the old terms are still used in that state, and with much vitriol, is unknown.
Sometime around 2400 a.a.H., the goddess Jabharil came to be introduced to the city of Negeémiliel following the acquisition of the Kalhari drow culture as a vassal state. Worship of Jabharil become quite popular and would become a major problem for the primacy of Negeé. Mostly because Negeé had become a figurehead for the State, and therefore something to be protested against.
Khariel Baener, the High Sorceress of the Temple of Doom, would order the Drow Trio acolytes under her command to murder all the defenders of a Jabharil temple to send a message of intimidation, so the worship of Jabharil was opposed. But the official stance of the city's laws is that worship of other deities is tolerated. Jabharil is a drow goddess--but one from a foreign culture and one alien to the established and traditional pantheon.
After The Cataclysm, and after many of the Negeémi drow would fall under the rule of the Tork Empire of Cretor, Negeé worship would fall under further competition with the powerful influence of human introduced religions, such as Christianity and particularly the dominant Islam. Acolytes trained in the traditions of Negeé still existed at this time, but they were falling by the wayside amidst a subservience to humans and the rise of advanced nation states.
As of around the year 3400 a.a.H. there will be an entire planet purchased, settled and named for Negeé by the Underdark Technologies Inc.. Although this is more for the civilization that she represented than for the goddess herself. It is probably safe to assume that she will still have some worshippers even in a technological future of cloned and bioengineered drow.
Worship of NegeéEdit
Specifics are unknown. It is known that she requires blood sacrifices, preferably of enemy soldiers. It might be surmised that as a goddess of war, she is prayed to and extolled in the hopes of gaining victories through divine interventions be those miracles subtle or overt. It is likely that the sacrifices of people is meant to placate Negeé, or give her the sustenance to help her worshippers?
Although foreign warriors or fighters are known to be the best sacrifices, it is also quite true that common criminals might be sacrificed as well. This is particularly true for criminals of the "Cult of the Flower", a cult based on the worship of Jabharil, the goddess of love and fertility. Fanatics to Jabharil might be considered 'fighters' to be sacrificed, even if they are from the local poor and downtrodden and hardly qualify as true warriors.
- Adventurers exploring the depths of Kazrrad or running afoul of Negeémiliel law might also be sentenced to be sacrificed to the goddess of war.
- How often sacrifices are carried out is unknown. There are many temples in Negeémiliel, but only major temples offer sacrifices, and then, not everyday.
- There are certainly several yearly or regular events at the Temple of Doom, where sacrifices take place. One such regular event, has a leading initiated girl from the Academy plunge the knife to remove the heart of a sacrificial victim.
- The bodies of those sacrificed are mummified, and interred deep in the Temple of Doom. If other temples also mummify and store corpses of the sacrifices is unknown.
- Given the difficulties of mummification, that would seem to limit the frequency of sacrifices. It is likely that sacrifices do increase with the number of potential victims available?
- Some priestesses have the right to carry sacrificial blades with them as a sign of office, even though they might never be used for an actual sacrifice.
- Priestesses of War might consider deaths that they cause on the battlefield from their offensive spells as sacrifices to Negeé?
- Acolytes, but especially priestesses, have police power to question and arrest suspects and even judge minor crimes in the name of Negeé, making a figure wearing a priestess coat a fearsome figure in the minds of commoners. Often, in their intimidated fear, commoners magnify the potential legal power of a priestess beyond what it actually is.
Strength of WorshipEdit
When Negeémiliel achieved its independence, Negeé seems to have been very strongly revered. The city was already renamed for her, and renamed again after independence to further glorify her. The leading drow of the city referring to themselves as her "acolytes" and presenting their functions as service to her. Belief in her giving them an ecstatic motivation to succeed in their service or in fights on the battlefield.
Nearly two thousand years later, in 2428 a.a.H., the acolytes still pay considerable lip service to Negeé, and serve in her name, but often, it seems that their faith is lacking. More importantly, the goddess Negeé has become identified with the worst of acolyte misdeeds. Not the least as it now seems that Negeé is being used as an instrument of base fear, as common Negeémi criminals are often sacrificed on her alters as a punishment for them, more than a gift to Negeé.
Cults of NegeéEdit
Negeé in Llurth NegeélEdit
Negeé in Erehel-SinuEdit
Negeé in NegeémilielEdit
Negeé in Ched'NasanEdit
Negeé in Ched'HihrinEdit
Cults of Negeé in other drow citiesEdit
Negeé in NegeéraEdit
Non-drow cults of NegeéEdit
In modern cultureEdit
After The Cataclysm, all Kazrrad based cultures were adversely affected. The drow of Negeémiliel did better than most, worship of Negeé from that drow ethnic source would continue well into the modern age. The Negeémi drow living in the Empire of Cretor were given considerable autonomy and the Acolyte system continued until at least the 30th Century a.a.H. By that time, though, the theological social system and general faith had diminished with competition of commoner drow magic users, human technology, and human faiths such as Christianity and the dominant Islam.
Nebulosa of OtsEdit
In the 35th Century a.a.H., Negeé will be honored as a planet owned by Underdark Technologies Inc. will be named for her. It is unknown if many drow continue to literally worship her.