Aerenal is the ancestral homeland of Eberron’s elves, and a realm that is alien to most of Khorvaire’s inhabitants. Thick jungles and exotic flora cast deep shadows across the land, shrouding a society steeped in a fascination with death.
Aerenal is open to travelers and traders, although the Aereni rarely offer a warm welcome to foreigners.
The Undying Court, a council of religious and noble leaders from prior generations, rules the elves of Aerenal. The members of this council are undead; the Aereni refer to these individuals as the undying. The Undying Court selects the Sibling Kings – currently Balaereth and Tezaera of the Mendyrian line – to handle day to day government business. The Aereni respect the wisdom of the Undying Court, and their faith recognizes its members as emissaries of their ancestors. Death fascinates the Aereni, and it informs their fashions and arts; they also have a propensity for the study of necromantic and planar magic. Some Aereni even undergo alchemical processes and mystic rites in order to appear dead. Most elves of Aerenal are members of vast extended families, called lines, that have ties to counselors of the Undying Court.
The Tairnadal elves of Aerenal’s northern plains have a warrior culture similar to that of the Valenar elves. Tairnadal family divisions are called warclans, and they are less devoted to the Undying Court than are other Aereni.
Major Regional Features
Most Aereni dwell on private estates in the jungle – small family villas ruled by a noble line. In the north, the wandering elven warclans practice a nomadic lifestyle, maintaining only a few fortresses and settlements.
Pylas Talaear: This major Aerenal port is the gateway by which outsiders visit Aerenal, although few traders ever travel beyond the city. The residents of Pylas Talaear are more tolerant of outsiders than are other Aerenal elves, and few undying dwell in the city.
Shae Cairdal: This city is the capital of Aerenal and the home of the Sibling Kings. Much of the city stands atop enormous trees, and many of its structures are shaped from living tree trunks. Shae Cairdal has the second largest population of undying in Aerenal.
Shae Thoridor: Shae Thoridor is Aerenal’s other major port besides Pylas Talaear. The Tairnadal also control the city, and no undying dwell there. The city’s combative elven occupants are always eager to prove their warrior skills, and they can present a danger to foreigners.
People of Aerenal
Proud, haughty, and fascinated with death, the elves of Aerenal comprise over two-thirds of the continent’s population; the undying account for most of the remaining one-third. A small number of half-elves and traders of other races are also permanent residents of Aerenal.
All of Aerenal’s elf inhabitants worship the Undying Court, the Spirits of the Past, or both. No other religion is accepted among the permanent population, although foreigners are not persecuted for practicing other beliefs.
The elves of Aerenal revere the undying, but they harbor a hatred for other forms of undead, particularly those that feed on the living. Destroying such creatures is considered to be a religious duty.