Age of Legends
he fracturing of Eriond that occurred at the time of the Sundering, led to a world wide isolation and heterogeneity of Eriond’s civilizations. Out of this cultural drift arose a variety of disparate systems for recording the passage of time. In the Eastern lands two dating systems, corresponding to Beheladorian the and the Avenian calenders respectively, have persisted. Which recording system is preferred in a given land often depends upon which Calender system is used, the Betheladorian, or the Avenian.
The Betheladorian system of time keeping developed in the midlands of Endilar, in what is present day Karthador. Betheladorian reckoning divides the years and epics of Eriond neatly into two ages, the former, and the present. The watershed event demarcating the divide between the former and the present age in this system, is the Sundering. There is also a symmetry between the two ages: the Sundering provides a fixed point at which the years advance either forward, or backward. In Betheladorian reckoning, the former age is referred to as “Dawn of Eriond”, or D.E., whereas the current age is called “After Sundering”, or A.S. Hence, the year in which the Sundering occurred is 1 D.E., whereas the year following it is 1 A.S. As 2,655 years have passed since the event of the Sundering, the current year according to Betheladorian records is 2,655 A.S.
The Avenian system of time keeping developed in Avenon a half century after the Sundering. Like the Betheladorian system, within Avenian Reckoning the Sundering serves as the major dividing point between the ages. Yet unlike the former system, Avenian Reckoning divides the world into five ages. The end of the first age and the beginning of the second is marked by the creation of Elves, the eldest of the mortal races. The Sundering wrought the end of the second age and ushered in the third. The third age came to an end when the Quintalad was broken, thus giving rise to the fourth age. The fifth age was brought about by the ending of the War of the Damned. Another difference between these two systems is that in Avenian reckoning, the advancement of years is always recorded as moving forward (rather than moving backwards from some event). However, at the start of each new age, the date always reverts back to year one. The ages within the Avenian system of recording are numbered, but unnamed amongst the chronicler (though they have been given names by common folk). The first age is known simply as “The First Age”, and is designated by the numeral I, and likewise the subsequent ages. It has been eight hundred and thirty three years since the ending of the War of the Damned and the close of the fourth age. Thus, by Avenian reckoning, the year is now 833-V.