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Dark Elves

Posted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 5:36 pm
by Havard
What's the story behind WH's Dark Elves? Are they corrupted by Chaos?


Re: Dark Elves

Posted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 6:26 pm
by willpell
I don't know Warhammer Fantasy, but IIRC the 40K Dark Eldar are not really corrupted by Chaos...if anything, it's more the reverse. Of the four Lords of Chaos, it's absolutely known that Slaanesh, the god of perversion, was created by the Eldar, due to their habit of constantly having gigantic ultra-decadent orgies. (I have a pet theory that Khorne was similarly created by the Orcs, Nurgle probably by the humans, and Tzeench I dunno.) So basically the normal Eldar are the ones who saw that happen, went "oh shit, cuz, we gotta clean up our act", and turned into the current version of "high elves", while the Dark Eldar were the ones who went in the opposite direction, being like "daaamn, our genitals and our sadism parties are so awesome that we gave birth to a god! Let's see if we can double down on that!"

As usual, this is my brain half-remembering a soup of various sources, so take it with several large cubes of salt.

Re: Dark Elves

Posted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 11:52 pm
by Ashtagon
in 40k lore, it's pretty much as willpell said -- the eldar essentially created Slaanesh through their cultural norms, with different groups reacting differently. Craftworld ("high elves") fled into artificial planets, dark elves hid from Slaanesh and Chaos in the eldar webways, and a third group went to ground hiding on recently terraformed planets in the far reaches of eldar civilisation (the "wood elves", which receive comparatively little attention in 40k lore).

It's a bit more variable in fantasy lore, and that lore has changed a bit over the years. There have been indications that they worship Slaanesh and/or Khaine. And Khaine has at times been described as the elven god of war, and as a Chaotic scion of Khorne and Slaanesh combined. In fantsy lore, Slaanesh predates all the elves, though not necessarily the elven gods or Khaine.