Encyclopedia Alagaësia: Durza

Durza, born as Carsaib, spent the early part of his life with a nomadic tribe on the plains. His father committed some act that earned him the title of “oathbreaker,” and as a result, the tribe left the family to survive alone. Eventually a group of men murdered Carsaib’s parents, leaving the boy to fend for himself. He tried to commit suicide by wandering into the desert, but the elderly sorcerer Haeg found him close to death and nursed him back to health. Carsaib, who Haeg called “Desert Rat,” eventually convinced the old man to teach him how to control spirits. They practiced magic for weeks, hunting lizards for sustenance. One day a spell malfunctioned, injuring Haeg, and Carsaib spent over a fortnight nursing Haeg back to health, only to watch bandits kill his mentor a short time later. He thought he could summon spirits to wreak vengeance on the attackers but was possessed by the spirits instead. The Shade Durza was “born.”

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Nothing is known of the time before Durza encountered Galbatorix somewhere in the wilds following the death of Jarnunvösk. The Shade taught him many dark secrets (such as the spell Forsworn Kialandí later used to disrupt Oromis’s ability to access magic) and helped Galbatorix bend the first captured Eldunarí to his will. This skill was key to destroying the Dragon Rider order. [Read more…]

Immanuela Meijer

About Immanuela Meijer

Immanuela is the Paolinis' executive assistant.

Encyclopedia Alagaësia: Barst

Nothing is known of Barst’s early years except that he was the son of Berengar and that he was rumored to have killed a wounded ox with a single punch. Whether inherited or awarded, his earldom included an estate nearby Gil’ead.

He had a reputation for strength, ruthlessness, and cunning—perhaps even prior to his association with Galbatorix. His vassals feared his swift, unmerciful response to crime and disputes (often execution).

mace_indo-persia_18th_or_19th_century_-_higgins_armory_museum_-_dsc05617-reduced1Barst drove his horses into the Ramr River to spite the elves when they forced him to flee his estate during the events of the Inheritance Cycle. Eventually the king sent him to “recruit” new soldiers for the army:

“…so he goes to this village and orders all the men to join Galbatorix’s army. Same story as always. Only, the men refuse, and they attack Barst and his soldiers. . . . Well, Barst was too clever for them; he had archers posted around the village before he went in. The soldiers kill half the men and thrash the rest within an inch of their lives. No surprise there. Then Barst takes the leader, the man who started the fight, and he grabs him by the neck, and with his bare hands, he pulls his head right off! . . . Like a chicken. And what’s worse, he ordered the man’s family burned alive as well.” (Unnamed soldier, Inheritance Deluxe, page 120)

[Read more…]

Immanuela Meijer

About Immanuela Meijer

Immanuela is the Paolinis' executive assistant.

Encyclopedia Alagaësia: Urû’baen a.k.a. Ilirea

Alpinist - Silhouette at dawnUrû’baen was the capital of Galbatorix’s Empire. Originally called Ilirea, it was founded by the elves when they first arrived in Alagaësia, and then abandoned after it was partially destroyed during the Dragon War. The Fair Folk allowed the Broddring men to claim and rebuild Ilirea as their capital after the cessation of conflict between King Palancar and the elves. Once humans were added to the Dragon Rider pact, members—including Oromis and Glaedr—resided and trained in the city.

Very early in Ilirea’s history (prior to the events of the [[Inheritance Cycle]]), the elves discovered a fissure beneath Ilirea that released vapors that:

“…increased the chances that those who slept near it might catch a glimpse, if however confused, of future events. So, over two and a half thousand years ago, the elves built this room atop the fissure, and an oracle came to live here for many hundreds of years, even after the elves abandoned the rest of Ilirea.”(Galbatorix, Inheritance Deluxe, page 421)

“…she whiled away the centuries dreaming of all that had been and all that might be. In time, the air lost its potency and the oracle and her attendants departed. Who she was and where she went, none can say for sure.” (Galbatorix, Inheritance Deluxe, page 421)

Years passed until Galbatorix, newly graduated, convinced Morzan to leave the gate to Ilirea open, thereby allowing him to steal a dragon hatchling to replace Jarnunvösk, who had died in a skirmish with the Urgals. Morzan and Galbatorix disappeared together for some time, hiding in evil places while they practiced dark magics. Their goals were initially hidden in a shroud of rumors, but the two eventually found twelve others willing to betray their order. [Read more…]

Immanuela Meijer

About Immanuela Meijer

Immanuela is the Paolinis' executive assistant.

Encyclopedia Alagaësia: Elva

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Elva was orphaned as a baby. Perhaps her parents traveled with the Varden to Tronjheim and died, or her caretaker, Greta, transported Elva to the dwarves’ capital following their deaths. In any case, when Eragon visited the secret stronghold, Greta pushed through the crowd to ask him to bless the child for luck, which he did:

Atra guliä un ilian tauthr ono un atra ono waíse skölir fra rauthr.

Saphira also gave Elva a gift, one of hope; the dragon brushed her snout along the child’s forehead and left a silver/white star-shaped mark, much like a Dragon Rider’s gëdwey ignasia.

Neither Eragon or Saphira thought any further of Elva until their training in Ellesméra. Eragon realized he had made a grammar error during the blessing and instead of saying “May luck and happiness follow you and may you be shielded from misfortune,” he had cursed her with “May luck and happiness follow you and may you be a shield from misfortune.” The effects from this mistake, though not immediately clear, were permanent.

*(Christopher Paolini made the grammar error, which he didn’t catch until when he was writing Eldest. He decided to incorporate the error into the story line and the character arc of Elva was born.)* [Read more…]

Immanuela Meijer

About Immanuela Meijer

Immanuela is the Paolinis' executive assistant.