God of the moon and autumn, Sehanine is the patron of trickery and illusions. She has close ties to Corellon and Melora and is a favorite deity among elves and halflings. Scouts and thieves ask for her blessing on their work. Her teachings are simple:
- Follow your goals and seek your own destiny.
- Keep to the shadows, avoiding the blazing light of zealous good and the utter darkness of evil.
- Seek new horizons and new experiences, and let nothing tie you down.
In the time before time, the gods sprang fully formed from the primeval void. All these ﬁrst gods were equally endowed with the power of the cosmos, and each claimed jurisdiction over certain aspects of the universe. In a spirit of cooperation that has not been seen since, they built the worlds together, separating matter from energy, land from sea, and sky from earth.
The wiser gods banded together and called themselves the Seldarine, or Brothers and Sisters of the Wood. While the other gods squabbled over custody of the various aspects of the worlds they had jointly created, the Seldarine used their power to cover the barren lands of the world with lush forests, tall grasses, ﬂowers of incredible beauty, and animals of every kind. Moradin, Yondalla, and Garl Glittergold allied with the Seldarine, claiming the mountains, plains, hills, and underground areas of the new world as their own. When Gruumsh, the evil god who later fathered the orc race, realized that there was no good portion of the world left for him, he grew black with rage. Seizing the caves, rocky cliffs, and sections of the darkness below that no one else wanted, he began to plot his revenge. Gruumsh decided to build for himself a magniﬁcent fortress directly on the surface of the world that the other gods had claimed. One by one, he tore out of the ground the towering trees that graced the forests. One by one, he stripped them of their branches and laid them atop one another to build a vast, crude structure to house the armies he intended to create. Gruumsh cleared miles upon miles of forested land in this way, leaving behind barren deserts upon which nothing would grow. Corellon Larethian, lord and creator of the earth’s vast forests, ordered him to cease— and the orc god’s reply was to seize Araushnee, a darkly beautiful goddess who was Corellon’s consort, and imprison her within his crude fortress. Corellon would not be goaded so easily into fury. Choosing a tall, perfect tree, he fashioned its trunk into a magniﬁcent longbow and made from its branches a set of true-ﬂying arrows. From atop a mountain many miles away he nocked an arrow to his bow and ﬁred upon Gruumsh’s fortress. Again and again he ﬁred, and each of his arrows ﬂew through some chink between the logs and found its mark, piercing the orc god’s body until his blood ran like a river, undermining the sandy base upon which he had built. Down crashed the fortress around Gruumsh’s ears, allowing Araushnee to escape. Enraged, Gruumsh seized his morningstar and ran across the land to confront his enemy, all the while with Corellon’s arrows raining down upon him. The two gods clashed with a fury that rocked the newly born world. Furiously they fought for a day and a night. Araushnee, who hoped that Corellon’s death might give her the opportunity to rise as queen over the Seldarine, secretly aided the orc god. Other gods joined the ﬁght on both sides, and ﬁre rained down from the heavens. On and on went the divine battle thereafter known as the First War. At last, the other gods began to withdraw, their strength and their fury spent. Gruumsh and Corellon fought on, the orc lord’s power waxing in the dark of night while Corellon gained in strength during the day. At last, Gruumsh’s greater physical strength and endurance began to prevail over Corellon’s dancing blade, and the orc god pressed his advantage. Corellon turned his stricken, bleeding face to the sky, and the tears of Sehanine Moonbow, another of the Seldarine, fell upon it, giving him the strength for a final strike. Turning back to his foe, Corellon plucked out Gruumsh’s eye with a single, well-placed sword stroke. The orc lord howled with pain and ran from the field of battle. Known as One-Eye forever after, he nurses his hatred of the Seldarine in the dark recesses of the world, plotting revenge. Corellon gathered up the soil that had soaked up his blood and Sehanine’s tears and formed it into mortal beings of unearthly beauty, which he called elves. Corellon fashioned elves in the image of each member of the Seldarine, then set them upon the earth to be its stewards. Infused with the divine power of gods’ blood and tears, the elves took control of earth’s forested lands, seas, and skies. Araushnee’s treachery did not go unpunished. For her betrayal, Araushnee was cast out of the Seldarine and transformed into a demonic spider-form. Renaming herself Lolth, she called to the elves created in her image, the drow, and retreated with them beneath the earth. Sehanine Moonbow, whose tears had given Corellon strength in his time of need and whose silver light had revealed Araushnee’s evil, became Corellon’s new consort. Seeing the creations of the Seldarine, the other gods scrambled to emulate them. However, their hurry was too great, and each of their creations was but a ﬂawed, forlorn imitation of the magniﬁcent elves. Because of these ﬂaws, the other races could not live as long as elves or reach the same heights of civilization. Still, the elves were kind to those races that had good hearts and helped them to establish themselves. The orcs, however, seek always to avenge themselves on the elves for their god’s mutilation, and the two races have nursed a deep-seated enmity ever since.
After the gods had won the war against the primordials, they fought amongst themselves for dominion over various aspects of the natural world. Sehanine sided with Khala, Zehir and Corellon against Pelor and his allies, until Avandra offered compromises in the form of day-night cycles and the seasons.[DP:92] Later, during the War of Winter, Sehanine intervened alongside Pelor to protect the ancient compromises of night and day from being overthrown by Khala, the god of winter.[DP:67]
Sehanine dwells in Arvandor, the Verdant Isles, in the Astral Sea. However, she is frequently absent, preferring to walk in moonlight in the mortal world,[MotP:90] as well as wandering the whole cosmos.[DMG:160]
Sehanine is one of the Seldarine, the fellowship of brothers and sisters of the woods, which comprises Corellon, Sehanine and other gods and exarchs who dwell in the dominion of Arvandor. The Seldarine are revered by elves and eladrin.[DP:51]
Wearing silver jewelry at night pleases Sehanine.[DP:143]
Sehanine's worshipers see her blessings in the moon's phases. The full moon shields the faithful from harm. A bladelike crescent bodes well for their attacks. And a dark moon presents opportunities to take what you will.[DP:116] Other omens sent by Sehanine are as follows:
- Blue moon (good omen, marks an auspicious event);
- Red moon (bad omen, heralds bloodshed);
- Dead tree with a single gold leaf (good omen, encourages hope);
- Shadows moving on their own (bad omen, heralds betrayal);
- A person who briefly casts no shadow (bad omen, marks a bringer of misfortune);
- An archer's arrow turns to silver (good omen, marks a bringer of justice);
- A candle's flame glows with silvery light during prayer (good omen, marks a heard prayer).[Dr386:68]
Priests of Sehanine oversee funerals, telling meanings of dreams, helping with decision making, and defending against undead.[Dr386:68]
A quarterstaff is her favored weapon. [Dr386:69,70]
In the Forgotten Realms setting, Sehanine Moonbow is one of the elven godesses, and the Moon Elf was created in her name.