Urogalan

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Urogalan
Game background
Title(s) He Who Must Be, the Black Hound, Lord in the Earth, the Protector, the Shaper
Home plane Blessed Fields of Elysium
Power level Demigod
Alignment Neutral (LN tendencies)
Portfolio Earth, death
Domains Death, Earth, Law, Protection (also Halfling and Repose in Forgotten Realms)
Superior Yondalla
Design details

In many campaign settings for the Dungeons & Dragons role-playing game, Urogalan is the halfling deity of earth and death. His symbol is the silhouette of a dog's head.

Publication history[edit]

Urogalan was first mentioned in Roger Moore's "The Gods of the Halflings" article in Dragon #59 (1982).

He was first detailed in the release of Monster Mythology (1992), which included details about his priesthood.[1] His role in the cosmology of the Planescape campaign setting was described in On Hallowed Ground (1996).[2] He received a very detailed description for his role in the Forgotten Realms in Demihuman Deities (1998).[3]

Urogalan's role in the Forgotten Realms is revisited in Faiths and Pantheons (2002).[4] He was detailed again in Races of the Wild (2005).[5]

Description[edit]

Urogalan is a gentle deity for a god of death, respected and revered by his chosen race but never feared. He is seen as a protector of the dead. Because halfling dead are usually buried in the earth, he is also the guardian of the earth itself (as opposed to the green plants that grow in the earth, which are the dominion of other halfling deities).

Urogalan rarely speaks or shows emotion. His voice, rarely heard, is tinged with loss. In appearance, Urogalan is a slim, dusky-skinned halfling dressed in brown or pure white, representing his two primary aspects of earth and death.

Relationships[edit]

In many campaign settings[who?], the halfling pantheon of gods consists of the leader Yondalla, as well as Arvoreen, Brandobaris, Cyrrollalee, Sheela Peryroyl, and Urogalan himself. Urogalan is on good terms with the rest of the halfing pantheon, but somewhat removed from their embrace of life. Urogalan is allied with Callarduran Smoothhands, Dumathoin, Flandal Steelskin, Grumbar, Segojan Earthcaller, and Sehanine Moonbow. He is also allied with human deities associated with earth and the protection of the dead[citation needed].

Urogalan is opposed to Abbathor and Urdlen. He abhors those gods associated with necromancy and the undead, such as Nerull and Kyuss.

Realm[edit]

Urogalan's realm, Soulearth, is found on the plane of Elysium. This realm is a cavern beneath the surface of Eronia, Elysium's second layer. The souls of halflings go to Urogalan's realm before being assigned their proper places in the afterlife.

Dogma[edit]

Urogalan's faithful believe that just as the earth is the giver of all life, so it ultimately receives all life into its embrace. They revere the soil and embrace death when their natural lives come to an end.

Worshippers[edit]

Few halflings actually worship Urogalan, but most honor and propitiate him.

Clergy[edit]

Though he is propitiated by many halflings, Urogalan's priesthood is small. They administer last rites, preside over burials, and care for halfling graves. They also maintain much of halfing genealogies and histories, and consecrate the foundations of new buildings and burrows. Their favored weapon is the flail.

Urogalan's novices are called Earthlings, while his full priests are called Vassals of the Black Hound. They wear simple, ankle-length robes tied with belts of rope. They are always bare-footed. Priests typically shave their heads, while priestesses bind their hair in twin braids.

Temples[edit]

Urogalan's temples are found in shallow basins open to the sky, in natural caves or in catacombs dug by halflings. They emphasize the natural terrain and their floors are always covered in six inches of dirt.

Rituals[edit]

Offerings to Urogalan include uncut gems and clay images of He Who Must Be. They are placed on flat rocks at the centers of natural earthen basins while soft dirges and elegies are sang and read while percussion is provided by the pounding of bare feet making slow circles around the central stone.

Halfling bodies are interned in stone or wooden caskets with a stone tablet graven with the name of the deceased and a symbol of the Black Hound on their chests and on their palms. Mementos of their lives are often buried with them.

Holy days[edit]

Urogalan's holy times are the nights of the full moons, known as Earthrisings. Halflings believe the full moon to be one of Urogalan's manifestations.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Sargent, Carl. Monster Mythology (TSR, 1992)
  2. ^ McComb, Colin. On Hallowed Ground (TSR, 1996)
  3. ^ Boyd, Eric L. Demihuman Deities (TSR, 1998)
  4. ^ Boyd, Eric L, and Erik Mona. Faiths and Pantheons (Wizards of the Coast, 2002).
  5. ^ Williams, Skip. Races of the Wild, Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast, 2005