The elves, scientifically known as the race of alfus primus, are the most ancient of the sentient races from which all other strains of alfus have sprung from.
Millennia ago, the vast, elven empire that spanned the width and breath of the entire world was without equal. The elves were the undisputed rulers of the earth due to their mastery over all forms of magicks, which allowed them to produce the greatest wonders in architecture, culture and technology the world had ever seen. However, with the sudden disappearing of magic circa -7,500 BR during Saredin's reign over the elves, they lost their unnaturally long life-span which could span over thousands of years, and their civilization swiftly crumbled into nothingness. Historians today estimate that more than 90 percent of the elven population was wiped out as a result of the great global catastrophe that followed. Fragmented, made physically frail and altogether powerless, the remaining pockets of elven survivors roamed the globe in the arid wastelands left behind by the great conflagrations until they finally settled in what is now considered the global elven capital of Solatium, a lush oasis city nestled in the center of the vast Nefarian desert.
Today the elven race is but a mockery of its former self, with the race of man, and to a lesser extent the dwarves, having taking dominion over the earth in their stead due to their swift breeding and rapid territorial expansion into the vacuums left behind by the eradicated elves. The elves now teeter on the brink of what some have begun to call their encroaching exctinction as the combination of low birth rates and racial interbreeding is causing the elven genome to be slowly phased out.
The cultural identity of the elves is to this day still very much in flux with most of their traditions and knowledge lost during the great cataclysm. A great deal of them try to cling to the old elven ways of life from before the Fall as best they can and seek a way to restore their race's former glory, while others are ashamed or uncaring of their race's past and are simply seeking to live normal lives. Whatever the case may be for each elf, the constant among them all is that they all know very little of their own history which results in many of them struggling with finding their own identity and place in the world.
Elves reach adulthood at around 25 years of age. There is a noticeable difference in life expectancy among those elves who remain for most of their lives in the Nefarian desert and those who settle in other lands. The life expectancy of elves remaining in the desert is around 120 years old, while the life expectancy of those elves who choose to live outside the borders of the Nefarian desert is around 60 years old. The maximum lifespan of an elf is around 200 years old. Those elves who are born or grow up away from the desert are smaller and often more sickly than their desert brethren, and there appears to be a correlation with increased susceptibility to illness and disease in all elves that live away from the desert for a decade or more.
There is a small percentage among the elves who still hold dear the traditions and way of elven life of those who came before them: these elves follow the idea of the Clamor Antiquos, the calling of their forebears. They value what they consider the purity of elven culture, architecture and engineering, and the majority of them are often seen as elven supremacists by the other races and even by some elves who do not share their views. Antiquans try to mimic the ways of the elves from before the Fall in all their acts and endeavors (sans the help of magic), meaning that they give themselves over wholly in their pursuits of whatever their goals may be, and that they place a high value on elven lore and history, martial excellence, and the producing of great works of art, be it music, painting or writing. Many of them fully reject the established religions of today and still cling to the practice of ancestor worship, paying homage to long-dead elven emperors and their direct ancestors who they believe offer spiritual guidance and assistance from beyond the veil.
Those who most extremely adhere to the idea of the Clamor Antiquos wish to once again see the unification of all the elves in one global-spanning empire and the return of elves as the rightful rulers of the world. They often view Man and dwarves as lesser beings that have risen beyond their station and the majority of them consider gnomes to be no more than vermin, with reports of some gnomes having been callously murdered in public by outspoken Antiquans when visiting Solatium .
Examples of Common Male Names: Aerendyl, Elaethan, Ilyn, Llarien, Melisander, Tamsil
Examples of Common Female Names: Alaniana, Delshandre, Eloen, Llyriana, Namavae, Teharissa
Examples of Common Surnames: Augustus, Aurelianus, Fabianus, Horatius, Laurentinus, Marianus
Before the Fall, there existed a social caste consisting of half a dozen elven sorcerers whose powers were said to rival even that of the gods. These skillful masters of the arcane were called the Grand Magi and were said to be part of the Domus Divini, the houses of the divine, giving them equal rights and powers that rivaled even the greatest of elven kings. It were these six Grand Magi who had control over the elements and complete mastery over the material world, who could conjure forth great demons from the dark reaches of the world and bind them to their service, and it is said that the most powerful of these mages could bring back life to the dead and the long dead. But after the cataclysm the art of magic vanished from this world, and so did its most powerful practitioners. After those elves who survived the great fires settled themselves in what is now the elven capital of Solatium, some of them began to claim that they were descendants of the Grand Magi, claiming their names, histories, legends and lost works as their rightful heritage. These elves then immediately rose up in the social hierarchy and soon established themselves as part of the newly forming elven aristocracy, and it wasn't long before many more elves began coming forward over the following centuries claiming that they too could trace their lineage back to one of these Grand Magi.
Today, a great deal of elves still claim to have a trace of the same blood that flowed through the veins of those six Grand Magi, but there are very few descendants of the Domus Divini who are truly recognized as such, and those who are accepted exclusively belong to the elven nobility (and often have been for millennia). Nevertheless, there are still thousands of elves across all of the social strata who still claim to have divine blood in their veins, clinging to an almost non-existent chance to be recognized and have themselves be elevated in the elven social hierarchy.
The Six Names of the Domus Divini
al-Fazil, al-Kalim, al-Maheed, al-Qadir, al-Samara, al-Zaman.
Examples of Common Male Names: Aamir, Azid, Bassam, Hesham, Malak, Madar
Examples of Common Female Names: Akilah, Basira, Hafsa, Janan, Laila, Masuma
Examples Common Surnames: Divine elves take on one of the six family names of the Domus Divini.
The overwhelming majority of today's elves are Nova Gente, literally meaning "the new nation" in old elven, although this is by no means an official name or title: the term Nova Gente is but a moniker to describe the modern elf. These elves have usually all but forsaken the old traditions passed down for hundreds of generations by their forebears and have accepted the fact that their race will never again reach the height it achieved from before the Fall (though this is not always the case). Many of them have gone along with the modern times and have wholly embraced the dawn of the new world that industrialization has brought and all the virtues and vices that go along with it. The modern elf is often compared to a Man, as they are often similar in display of mannerisms and morality, religious beliefs, sexual preferences, and views on life, work and fulfillment.
Nova Gente Names:
Modern elves draw from the pool of names of both Antiquan and Divine, although a recent trend among some of them is to take on the more simple Ginean names to further distance themselves from their elven heritage.
Examples of Common Male Names: Arthur, Charlie, Eric, Jonesy, Mark, Pete
Examples of Common Female Names: Angie, Cherry, Heidi, Laurie, Silver, Vera
Examples Common Surnames: Nova Gente surnames draw primarily from the Antiquan naming pool, although those who settle outside of elven lands often take on typical Man family names as well.
There remain many clans of elves roaming the seserts of the southern continent as nomads.