Starscour and the Dread Pirate Myth in Rivendom | World Anvil

Starscour and the Dread Pirate

Despite being one of the oldest myths of the erinin, so much so that the name of the notorious pirate has been lost to the mists of time, the legend of Starscour and the Dread Pirate is still able to inspire fear and uncertainty in those who genuinely believe that the myth describes a historical person. At one point ostensibly the scourge of the merchants of IldRenn, the Dread Pirate was said to be an irredeemable erinin who had forsaken the gods for reasons that vary between tellings of the myth.


The legend of Starscour and the Dread Pirate who pilots her is embodied in a collection of disparate written works and oral traditions. As such, there is no single storyline to summarize but these works can be broadly categorized into three separate types. The following are the classifications and associated terminology used by literary analysts with regard to the body of myths that comprise the legend of Starscour and the Dread Pirate:  

Genesis Stories

Genesis stories deal primarily with the origin of the Dread Pirate. This is the most sparsely populated of the three categories of Dread Pirate myths. As such, very little is known about the "actual" origins of the Dread Pirate. The oldest works in this grouping have been determined to be oral traditions from as early as the 24th millennium NL, predating the great plague of IldRenn.   A number of elements are common amongst these stories. First and foremost, and often the primary focus of these genesis stories, is the Dread Pirate's troubled connection to the gods. In the earlier works of this categorizations, the Dread Pirate is characterized as simply having a strained relationship with the gods as a result of some unspecified loss in his life. Post-plague works increasingly characterize the Dread Pirate as a heretic that had forsaken the gods in pursuit of wealth and evil.  

Conquest Stories

Perhaps the most numerous classification of stories about the Dread Pirate, conquest stories tell of the dastardly deeds committed by the Dread Pirate during his reign of terror. The stories of this classification talk of the Dread Pirate's adventures both before the building of the skyship Starscour as well as after. Primarily, these stories talk of his reign of terror and are often narrated through the point of view of a survivor.   These stories do not necessarily revolve around the legend of the Dread Pirate and Starscour. Instead, typically, the Dread Pirate and Starscour are used as an inciting incident or conflict resulting in some form of tragic loss for the protagonist, thus setting the stage for the other events of the tale to take place.  

Defeat Stories

Not necessarily stories that focus on the Dread Pirate, defeat stories deal with the Dread Pirate's defeat at the hands of the great adventurer Annwn. Often focused on Annwn himself as the central figure rather than the Dread Pirate, these stories more extoll the virtues of the adventurer and condemn the vices of the Dread Pirate.


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