Sune (Forgotten Realms)

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For the given name, see Sune (name).
Sune
Game background
Title(s) Lady Firehair
Home plane 2E: Brightwater (Arborea)
3E: Brightwater
Power level Greater
Alignment Chaotic Good
Portfolio Beauty, love, passion
Superior None
Design details

Sune (/ˈsni/ SOO-nee)[1] is the deity of love and beauty in the fictional world of the Forgotten Realms. Her dogma is primarily concerned with love based on outward beauty, with primary importance placed upon loving people who respond to the Sunite's appearance.

Publication history[edit]

Ed Greenwood created Sune for his home Dungeons & Dragons game, stating that she was merely the Greek deity Aphrodite renamed.[2]

Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 1st edition (1977-1988)[edit]

Sune first appeared within Dungeons & Dragons as one of the deities featured in Ed Greenwood's article "Down-to-earth Divinity" in Dragon #54 (October 1981). Sune is introduced as Firehair, the goddess of love, beauty, charisma, and passion, a chaotic neutral greater goddess of the plane of Olympus. Sune is described in the article as "the ultimate in charisma." The article notes Sune's position within the cosmology: "Lliira and Selune serve Sune." Sune is commonly worshipped by chaotic good magic-users, illusionists, thieves, and clerics, and characters working as poets, artists, scribes.[2]

Sune later officially appeared as one of the major deities for the Forgotten Realms campaign setting, in the Forgotten Realms Campaign Set's "Cyclopedia of the Realms" booklet (1987).[1]

Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd edition (1989-1999)[edit]

Sune was described in the hardback Forgotten Realms Adventures (1990),[3] the revised Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting (1993) in the "Running the Realms" booklet,[4] and Faiths & Avatars (1996).[5] Her clergy was further detailed in Warriors and Priests of the Realms (1996),[6] and Prayers from the Faithful (1997).[7]

Her role in the cosmology of the Planescape campaign setting was described in On Hallowed Ground (1996).[8]

Her relationships with the nonhuman deities in the Forgotten Realms was covered in Demihuman Deities (1998).[9]

Sune is described as one of the good deities that celestials can serve in the supplement Warriors of Heaven (1999).[10]

Dungeons & Dragons 3.0 edition (2000-2002)[edit]

Sune appears as one of the major deities of the Forgotten Realms setting again, in Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting (2001),[11] and is further detailed in Faiths and Pantheons (2002).[12]

Dungeons & Dragons 4th edition (2008-)[edit]

Sune is still the goddess of love in the 4th edition Forgotten Realms setting. Sune's power has increased, and she is now one of the 11 good-aligned "Greater Gods" who preside over the new Forgotten Realms cosmology. It is established that most of the racial gods of love (such as Hanali Celanil of the Seldarine) are in fact aspects of her- those who are not, such as Sharess, and Lliira, have since become her exarchs. Sune, along with Tyr and Lathander, imprisoned Cyric following his murder of Mystra. She is an ally of Selune, and the two share an Astral Dominion known as the Gates of the Moon.[13]

Appearance[edit]

When Sune appears to the mortals of Faerûn she wears only a diaphanous gown. She is known for her lustrous red hair that drapes down to the ground. She has eyes of shining emeralds and ruby red plump lips. Her symbol is that of a beautiful woman with red hair. Sune is known to enjoy long-term relationships, and many casual flirtations.

Dogma[edit]

Sune's dogma maintains that physical beauty or lack thereof is more than simply a function of physical factors; to the Sunite, that which is beautiful is good and ugly things are undoubtedly evil, for they believe that beauty radiates from one's inner being and reflects the core nature of an individual. (This outlook when taken literally will often result in the deception of a Sunite by a fair-seeming evil creature.) Followers of Sune do all they can to protect their beauty. Sunites are also often narcissistic, being commanded to love themselves more than anyone except Sune herself. Apart from these specifics, Sune's dogma revolves around nurturing and encouraging love and passion. (This is not to say that all Sunites are hedonists, this being the domain of Sharess rather than Lady Firehair.)

Orders[edit]

  • Order of the Ruby Rose/Order of the Reddest Rose

The Church of Sune has a small affiliated order of fighters, paladins, and bards who serve to guard temples and holy sites along with the clergy and who sometimes pursue quests or do good works in Sune's name to promote her faith. To become one of the Sisters and Brothers of the Ruby Rose, a candidate stands vigil in a church of Sune all night. If the Lady Firehair appears to the candidate in a vision during the night or somehow shows her favor, the candidate is admitted to the order. Members of this order are given to writing essays and songs of courtly love when not engaged in vital business, and often adopt a beautiful individual to adore from afar whether that individual would be flattered by such attentions or not.

Clerics[edit]

Sune's specialty priests are known as Heartwarders. They are known to be very beautiful, and wise.

Relationships[edit]

Sune is served by Lliira and Sharess, who she rescued from the influence of Shar during the Godswar. For this, Shar considers Sune her enemy, and Sune now aids Mystra in her struggle against Shar and the Shadow Weave. She is also allied to Selûne (who once served her much as Sharess does now, but has since gone her own way), Milil, and Lathander. She dislikes the Gods of Fury (Talos and his follower deities) as well as Tempus for the destruction they cause to beautiful things. Despite this, she has no true enemies among the gods, as the Gods of Fury dislike all others and Tempus considers her too flighty and therefore irrelevant to be worth the conflict.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Ed Greenwood, Jeff Grubb and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set. Wizard of the Coast. ISBN 0-88038-472-7. 
  2. ^ a b Ed Greenwood, Dragon magazine #54 - "Down-to-earth divinity" (October 1981), p. 53: Sune is "Aprhodite renamed."
  3. ^ Grubb, Jeff and Ed Greenwood. Forgotten Realms Adventures (TSR, 1990)
  4. ^ Ed Greenwood (1993). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting. ASIN B000K06S2E. 
  5. ^ Martin, Julia, and Eric L Boyd. Faiths & Avatars (TSR, 1996)
  6. ^ Terra, John. Warriors and Priests of the Realms (TSR, 1996)
  7. ^ Greenwood, Ed and Stewart, Doug. Prayers from the Faithful (TSR, 1997)
  8. ^ McComb, Colin. On Hallowed Ground (TSR, 1996)
  9. ^ Boyd, Eric L. Demihuman Deities (TSR, 1998)
  10. ^ Perkins, Christopher. Warriors of Heaven (TSR, 1999)
  11. ^ Ed Greenwood et al. (2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting. Wizard of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5. 
  12. ^ Boyd, Eric L, and Erik Mona. Faiths and Pantheons (Wizards of the Coast, 2002)
  13. ^ Cordell, Bruce R., Ed Greenwood, and Chris Sims. Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. (Wizards of the Coast, 2008)