The Mythical Age, or Age of Myth, is an era of great antiquity, in which several major events of legend are held to have taken place. The exact length, time, and sequence has been hotly debated, as most information survives only in the form of stories and tales handed down through the ages. Other names include those of 'Age of Heroes', 'The Lost Era', and 'The Great Battles'.
The order of these events is not widely agreed upon, just that the happened, what was involved, and in some cases the outcome.
The Grey War
An incredibly massive conflict between the Armies of Darkness, led by the Dark Lords, and the forces of light, led by the Monster Gods and the One King. This was either a lengthy conflict or a single enormous battle, depending on which account you follow. In either version, the outcome was not decisive, and the final battle was to be fought by an ascended (temporarily deified) warrior dressed in luminous armor (Hunter Jusenkyou, in Path to Ascension). According to the legend, the two armies fought, and in the end it was decided that the Army of Darkness would have three attempts to destroy the world of light, while the Army of Light would have only one chance to defeat them.
This war was fought by all races; humans, dragons, Fairies, unicorns, Goblins, Iname, and countless others. A key point that has challenged historians is the use of dragons, and which side they fought on. Figures like King Arthur and the prophet Asho Zoroaster are believed to have lived, if at all, in this age.
Each race fighting in the Grey War had a champion, or Hero, who marched into battle at the head of their own forces. For the dragons, it was the Broodmother; for the unicorns, it was the Unicorn King. For that race, the champion would take up a mythical weapon of unrivaled power and become the hero of their side (Hero of Light, Hero of Dark, etc.). No single name is given to the human champion: it is understood there were dozens, possibly thousands of them over the course of the war.
What is known is the human weapon: Echbaldam, the Sword of Righteousness, which was taken from its mythical resting place and given to each champion. The legends speak of how in the hands of a skilled champion, the sword could level mountains and lay waste to entire regions; on one occasion, with one mighty blow, it split the Dark Lord Nimi.
However, no champion who wielded it was strong enough to become the Hero of Light for the humans.
The Darkest Tower
The Darkest Tower was the seat of power for the Dark Lords and the billet of the Army of Darkness. While often depicted as a Mage Tower, it is unlikely Tower Magic or anything equivalent, was used at the time. The legends that speak of the Darkest Tower describe more as a ritual site.
Described as a single great black monolith, the tower supposedly rose dozens of miles on steeply angled sides. The legends all agree that it was not hewn from a single stone, but rather millions of pitch-black marble blocks, polished to a sinister hue and fitted so tightly that no mortar was required. The stones are described as being so dark that light fell into them.
There was a sigil stone, a physical artifact that mirrored all the hate and evil of the darkness. This artefact is said to instantly corrupt whoever holds it, to grant unimaginable, god-like powers. The power of the Dark Lords. See Contract.
The Darkest Tower is said to have been destroyed during the Breaking of the World, and some accounts hold that it was sacrificed in order to bring about the breaking.
Called simply The Light, this place was the rallying point for the Army of Light as well as massive temple and palace for the One King. It is described as a four-sided, eight-tiered step-pyramid, with a colonnade at the top consisting of forty pillars and an open domed roof. Like the Darkest Tower, the site is considered to exist or have once existed within the physical realm, but is said to be unfathomably enormous in scale.
Unlike the Darkest Tower, there are no accounts of The Light having ever been destroyed. While most scholars agree that it probably met its fate somewhere during the Breaking of the World, there is no definitive, respected account of its destruction.
The Dragon Cycles
There are three major events spoken of in Dragon Theology that happened during the Mythical Age:
This should not be confused with the Dynastic Period. The Dynasties were either a period of peace that followed the Grey War, or a calendar system that covers the whole of the Mythical Age. Most scholars typically subscribe to the latter interpretation. There are Four Kings spoken of who ruled during this period, though some accounts (such as the one adopted by the Cardinal Clerics) refer to three kings as one.
In all versions of the legend, the One King reigned supreme throughout all of the age of Myth, and after. The legends also tell of a series of dynasties, each lasting forty centuries. In one interpretation, there are three Dynasties, each blessed by one of the lesser kings, but ruled over by the One King. In another, there are four, with one king ruling each dynasty.
The mythical age ended with the Last Dynasty.
The Great Silencing
There is no question that there was magic in the Mythical Age, and that great and powerful sorcerers walked the earth. Indeed, the precious few surviving relics of the era are magical in nature (and enormously more powerful). Humans possessed magic, along with the other races, and to a degree much greater and more innately than even the most powerful wizards of the Mage Wars.
In the Great Silencing, this ended. Supposedly, in that instant, all magic was snuffed out, save for that which belongs to the Iname. Indeed, the Iname were responsible for the Great Silencing, if anyone is to blame. All Magic in the later timeline, is the fruit of a genetic experiment by the Eladamri.
The Great Struggle
This was a conflict between the Army of Darkness and the Army of Light. It is generally regarded as having happened after the Great Silencing, as mortal races were not directly involved. It was only a battle between the ascended and descended beings. The Iname were likely involved, but to what extent varies according to accounts.
The Breaking of the World
The Breaking of the World was the consequence of the decision to put off the final conflict between good an evil.
This is one of the most difficult events to describe, because no two myths agree. The most common interpretation is that there was, at one point, a single, great, Flat Dimension. It was not until The Breaking that space, finite dimensions, and solar systems as we know them came into being.
Another interpretation holds that there was a single Flat dimension beneath a finite dimension, that both existed together and that direct travel between them was possible. Again, the breaking changed all of this, creating many flat worlds.
As a result of the Breaking, the Multi-Verse appears to be infinite, expanding, and billions of years old, even though its present form isn't. Cosmic microwave radiation from the Breaking itself fills many dimensions, which supports the Big Bang theory and all its variations within the Course Books storyworld.
Before the Breaking of the World, mortals who died went on to the One King, or to another place (unidentified). During the Breaking, the Iname plunged a part of the world into the abyss, and surrounded it with a veil through which only souls could pass, thus creating the Underworld.
The Mythical Age happened either at the beginning of Greater Antiquity, or before the start of Antiquity. Most historians include the Age of Myth in Greater Antiquity, and some offer it as the Missing Ten Thousand Years. The Laws of Antiquity, which were laid down during the mythical age, would tend to support the notion that the era should be part of Antiquity. Hunter Jusenkyou and Jason Bur'I both agree that there is a firm division between the Mythical Age and the start of Antiquity, since Antiquity represents the era of the Builders of Roads, an age of technology, where as the age of myth was an age of magic.
The length of the Mythical Age has been extremely difficult to pin down. Most scholars put it at about 10,000 years. Strangely, the two for-most experts on the subject, each have wildly different opinions on the subject.
According to Hunter's interpretation, the Mythical Age happened before Antiquity, and lasted roughly four thousand years. His sequence of events places the Dragon Cycle as happening concurrently with the Grey War (which itself lasted around 1,500 to 2,000 years), and was followed by an era of relative piece before the Great Silencing and the Breaking of the World, which he describes as having happened at the same time and being very quick. In Hunter's version of events, the entire era is known as "The Last Dynasty".
Surprisingly, within the very small demographic of respected figures who support the legends of the Age of Myth, there is room for dissension. Jason Bur'I places the length of the era at 12,000 years, separated into three distinct Dynasties. He also agrees that the Mythical Age came before Antiquity, but feels that it could be considered as part of it (when asked whether or not this era represents "the Missing Ten Thousand Years", Jason is known to abruptly change the subject). In Jason's version of events, the Dracoschism is an ideological disagreement that began during the Grey War, and was resolved by the Breaking of the Flights. In his interpretation, the First Dynasty was dominated by the Grey War, the second by the Dragon Wars, and the third by the ultimate battle between dark and light. The third and last dynasty began with the Great Silencing, which effectively took humans out of the conflict, and ended with the Breaking of the World. This event left only the Iname to fight for the forces of evil, and the humans took up the fight with technology, thus beginning the Roads War and Greater Antiquity.
This is the timeline of the Mythical Age, according to Jason Bur'I. Exact lengths are not known, rather, he seperates the era into three dystinct dynasties, and describes which events happen and in what order. Each Dynasty is considered to have lasted for forty centuries, or 4,000 years.
|The Great Dynasty||
|The Great Dynasty||
|The Last Dynasty||
According to legend, seven books were written at the end of the Age of Myth, which told the whole story of the era. These were called The Circle of Seven. Of them, only The Book of Lore survived into relatively modern times, and not very intact.
'Relic' is the colloquial term for magical artifacts which survived from the Mythical Age. These are few and far between, and seeing as Magic was considerably stronger back then, much more powerful than anything created during the Mage Wars.
What follows is a list known items, not a list of those that have been found:
- Soul Stealer
- Staff of Manos
- Iall, the Sword of Justice
- Shenti, the Sword of Liberty
- Echbaldham, the Sword of Righteousness
- Sword of Shadow
- Sword of Lies
- Pillars of Creation
- Ring of Tarkier
- Eclipse Itself