The gods charged the elves with a special duty: to spread light and wisdom to the ends of Varda. They gave the elves long life, great wisdom, resistance to many common ills, and a stronger propensity for magic (elenthas). For a period of many thousands of years, they formed the greatest civilizations on earth, unmatched throughout the world. By the end of the First War of Shadow – a period still shrouded in mystery and veiled in superstition – this greatness came to an abrupt halt. The Elven kingdoms were forever weakened.
Elves are not without the Dark One’s influence. Several tribes of elves have turned away from their divine mission. Some, such as the ancestors of the Narduren, served Seymus in the Shadow War.
A BRIEF HISTORY
Xani Quiloren, the Age of the Elves, is now a vague memory gleaned from books, which no elf in Quilda today remembers. In that glorious, utopian age — while the humans lived in barbarism and ignorance — the first of the elves planted a great tree. The World Tree, Da Dryas, was the largest living thing in the known universe, a source of hope to the sons of Lumas and the daughters of Luvé. A golden apple, plucked from its red-leafed white branches, could cure most ills.
It was in this serene time that an Elf Lord (qildori) named Solarion first announced his belief in the gods (danen) and paid the ultimate price. His death was the beginning of elven society’s transformation.
But this golden epoch was not to last forever. In the Shadow War, the glory of the elves faded. The forces of the Dark One hacked down the World Tree and burned it away. The power of the Elven King waned; the Light of the Elves (Luné Quiloren) was stolen from its lamp and shattered. Many elves died, and the silver Age of the Elves gave way to the iron Age of Humankind.