Modern Day Bretons: Man or Mer?

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Author (in-game): Filibert Beauchamp

By Vastyr Historian Filibert Beauchamp

The history of Bretons is quite complicated and has been debated by many scholars over the years. I am sure it will continue to be debated long after this sees publication as well. Such is the nature of mysteries.

The age-old argument focuses on a single question—what are Bretons, man or mer? The general understanding is that we Bretons consist of a mix of both, but there are differing opinions on which has precedence over the other.

My research has skewed back and forth several times now. I have argued for mer—our Elven blood—just as much as I’ve argued for our human nature, only to wake up the next morning and change my mind again! But I think I’ve finally and firmly planted my feet on one isle—the isle of mer!

How did I reach this conclusion? Allow me to explain.The most widely accepted theory as to the origin of the Bretons centers around the mingling of Nedes and Aldmer during the Merethic Era. When Clan Direnni came to High Rock, they found our Nedic ancestors, most notably a group called the Druids of Galen, who had rules the region through a line of Druid Kings. As Clan Direnni exerted its influence and rules, they established the feudal system that has continued, albeit with some changes, to the present day. The children of the Direnni and the Nedes were considered more mer than man, though not enough to be accepted by their Direnni parents. The distinction was just enough that it excluded them from being wholly mer.

Thankfully, it did not seem to exclude them from the spaces of man. And in fact, it seemed to elevate them. These children were often given advantageous positions within Nedic society and thus, a thriving community and people were built.

Now, many who believe that we Bretons are more man than mer attribute this to the fact that our ancestors, though in advantageous positions, were only allowed to marry other humans. We can see through texts, drawings, and other accounts that over the years this had an affect on our bloodline. Elven physical features such as pointed ears, angled faces, slender bodies, and distinctive eyes gradually faded. I can certainly see the logic here! It stands to reason that the Elven blood in us was stamped out over time, dissolved like a drop of paint into a pond, if you will.

But, here is my hypothesis: the fact that we possess a hint of our Elven lineage at all is evidence that it is still prominent within us. There are a great many centuries between us and our very first Breton ancestors. Though our features have become more human over time, I think it is important to note that our Elven aspects have not vanished completely. After only being allowed to have children with humans from the very onset of the Bretons as a people, we should have very little mer left in us. The fact that it has survived this long and in such clear ways speaks to its strength.

In this text, I would like to suggest that it is not a matter of ratio, but of potency! In the next twenty-three chapters, I will explain my theory in detail and lay out the research I have compiled thus far in a more organized fashion.

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