Elves vs. Humans Part 2- History of Elvin and Human Interaction in Aviandra

Last month I started talking a little bit about how the Elves culture is different from the Human culture in Aviandria. I could have given a super short answer, but I felt that the answer would make much more sense if whoever was reading it understood a bit more about the Elves in Aviandria as well as the history of the two races. Since that was a lot to cover in one post, I have split it up into two. Last month I wrote a little bit about the basic characteristics of Aviandrian Elves. If you missed it, you can read that part here. This month I’ll talk a little bit about the history of Elven and Human interaction in Aviandria up to the point Ashlynn arrives and how it affects their cultures.

Thousands of years before Ashlynn’s arrival, Elves were the original inhabitants of Aviandria. History is a tiny bit fuzzy before then because Elves passed their histories on orally. They didn’t have a solid recording system, and they tended to live in smaller communities. They weren’t really unfriendly with one another, but they were fairly self-sufficient and had little reason to mingle much with the other small communities. Elven nature is fairly slow to anger, so there were very few conflicts between communities. The Elves felt they had their basic needs well taken care of, so they felt no real drive for things to change. However, their static state began to be shaken a bit when humans arrived in Aviandria. It wasn’t a super fast transition. In fact, it happened fairly gradually. The number of humans that first came to Aviandria was small, and Elves had the belief that everyone had equal rights to the land, so they mostly let the humans go about their business while the Elves tended to their own.

As the human population grew, the Elves, though not particularly alarmed, began to take a bit more notice. The humans also began to reach out and learn more about their neighbors. There were language barriers to overcome, but eventually, a few from each of the two groups go past this and began to communicate. Each group began to recognize that the others had strengths and knowledge that they themselves did not. For example, the Elves had knowledge of healing herbs and practices the Humans were not familiar with, while the Humans had a writing system where history and information could be more reliably recorded. The Humans were skilled in organizing and maintaining larger communities with more variety, while the Elves had an intimate knowledge of the land and how to use it to its fullest potential. An exchange of knowledge began to take place between the Humans and the Elves. Because the Humans had the written language, theirs became the more common trade language. More and more Elves began to learn it. As the language barriers began to fall, other barriers did as well. Elves and Humans started to mingle more and more.

This sounds fast here, but in reality, it was happening over hundreds of years. In fact, it happened gradually enough that many hardly even noticed it was happening. Little by little Elves and Humans mixed more and more. More and more Elves learned how to speak the Humans’ language as well as reading and writing in it. They found that things often worked twice as well when combining their different strengths. After several thousand years, by the time Ashlynn arrived in Aviandria, the Elves and the Humans had mingled and mixed enough that there was very little division among them. Although there are some small, more isolated communities that have managed to stay closer to pure Elven ways, there aren’t many. For the most part, Humans and Elves have mixed their traditions and cultures enough that they don’t really identify as different cultures at all. The old Elven language isn’t entirely dead, but fewer and fewer learn it, while everyone speaks the language the Humans brought. For example, Alder knows a few basic words and phrases, but he isn’t even close to fluent. Having grown up in the middle of the city and having been practically raised by Dillyn’s mother, who is very much a human, he would not have varied in culture at all. Karynne, one of Ashlynn’s Sky Guard, did grow up in a smaller community where her family knew more of the old ways. She could speak the old Elven language fluently but was every bit as fluent in the common language. Even with knowing more of the Elven lifestyle, she had also learned enough of the other that when she moved to the city to become a rider, she didn’t find the culture too different, other than the natural differences between any city or country environment.

So, after all that, if I were to answer the question, “What is the difference between Elven and Human culture?” I would have to say that by the time Ashlynn would have gotten to Aviandria, there was very little. What little there may have been, Ashlynn would have been in a poor position to observe. That is one of the reasons it is seldom brought up or contrasted in Te book. There simply isn’t a place in the story it would really appear.
I’m afraid this answer might be somewhat unsatisfying, but I can only answer the way it is. As further books appear, there could possibly be occasions to see more of it, but for now, that is the context of Ashlynn and her Aviandrian adventures.

What other questions do you have about Elves or Humans in Aviandria?

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