Gheallie sidhe

elves » Gheallie sidhe

The gheallie Sidhe, or "the hunt of the elves" if literally translated, is the name given to the elven war bands charged with cleansing their homelands of invaders, be they goblins or humans. The gheallie Sidhe forces were typically small highly mobile war-bands of elite warriors. The key differentiator between the gheallie Sidhe and the occasional elven militias was the habit of the gheallie Sidhe of raiding beyond the borders of the elven lands.

The elves traditionally maintained no armies prior to the human Flight from the Shadow, as the gheallie Sidhe could form as required to drive out incursions by humanoids such as goblins and orogs and raid into the goblin lands as required to punish the incursions.

The gheallie Sidhe was most prevalent in the centuries prior to the Battle of Mount Deismaar when the Andu, Basarji, Rjuven, and Vos were expanding into the elven lands. The Brecht and Masetian people avoided the lands of the elves as they preferred to live along the coasts and so were, in turn, largely ignored by the elves.

In more modern times the elves have taken a much more defensive posture due to the power of their human neighbors with most elven realms officially tolerating, or at least ignoring their human neighbors. The elven realms now maintain a standing army in most realms and few realms still (at least officially) permit the existence of the gheallie Sidhe.

The rival faction of elves, who seem to tolerate the humans might just be accepting defeat or curious about the mortals, but another view is that the rival faction prefers the cynlluniau Sidhe. This variant assumes that the other faction seeks to subvert the humans rather than hunt them down.

The elven realms of Lluabraight, Rhuobhe, and Tuar Annwn still maintain a force of gheallie Sidhe which they send against their human neighbors from time to time but in Coullabhie, Cwmb Bheinn, Innishiere, Rhuannach, the Sielwode, and Tuarhievel the Gheallie Sidhe is restricted to malcontents who have never accepted the rise of the humans.

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