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The Sidhe are male Nymphs. As part of a deeply matriarchal society with heightened sensuality, males tend to be raised segregated from females and as such have become almost an entirely separate species.

This page provides information about Nymphs that pertains solely to the males. For the full profile, please read the Nymph page first.

Physical Characteristics

Base by Citron Rouge

Sidhe are virtually indistinguishable from Nymphs (especially at first glance), leading to myths that there are no male Nymphs.

Effeminate, slender and almost as petite as their women, Sidhe stand on average at 5'8" (1.7m) tall and have the same colouring as the females. The only real, visible difference is in their having male genitalia instead of female, but even then, men are sometimes difficult to differentiate from small-breasted women (which is the norm for Nymphs, anyway).

Likewise, Sidhe tend to wear their hair long, decorated with feathers, beads and thin braids, though males do usually keep to earthier colours than the "pretty" hues most often associated with Nymphs.

In any weather, Sidhe wear leathers and furs rather than the flowing silks adorning their female counterparts, though they stick to lighter, thinner fabrics in the summer and bring out the heavy-duty furs in the winter. Given their sensual nature, Sidhe don't tend to wear many clothes, usually sticking with just leggings and boots.

Note: Sidhe can get away with a little more (or, rather, "less") in the cities than females can, for obvious reasons, but owing to the feminine looks can still get in to trouble if they don't adapt.

Politics

Official Name: Sidhe (pl. Sidhe; fem. Nymph)

Common Name(s): Sidhe

Pronunciation: Sheed

Whether or not a commune segregates its genders, the leaders are the women. Sidhe are sometimes afforded their own leadership within a commune, but they are ultimately answerable to the Naneth.

Like the females of the species, Sidhe are focused on keeping the Balance of Nature, but where Nymphs forsake all physical violence and rely on the elements purely for protection and defence, males are permitted to instigate combat if necessary. It is perhaps for this reason that Sidhe are often tasked with the defence of their communes, especially in those where the genders are strictly segregated and they take the place of Furies.

Ranks

While the number of social ranks varies from commune to village, and many don't even bother, there are a couple that are common across the Nymph species. Even if the rank is identical between the genders, however, the males have a different title and are always of a lower rank. (Names may vary between communes, as well.)

  • Senyanta

    Senyanta are the male equivalent of the novice, undergoing the two-year Rite of Passage prior to performing the Rite of Bonding. Senyanta differ slightly from female novices in that, rather than solely learning to survive in the wilderness alone with the freedom to go wherever they please (within reason) to do so, Sidhe are assigned a particular area (as befitting their commune and life goals). They must protect this area at all costs, much as they will be expected to defend their commune later on, but still keep within the bounds of the Sylvan Creed[^If a commune has Furies, Sidhe are usually expected to follow the same path for their Rite of Passage as the females.^].
  • Adaneth

    Literally translating into "father", the adaneth are the male counterparts of the Naneth, a Nymph commune's ruling council. There is usually only one adaneth for every three naneth. While afforded some autonomy to govern the males in a commune, they are more like commanders than elders and answer directly to the ruling council.

  • Nuin

    Sidhe do not often perform ceremonies, instead relying on the Sylph (priestesses) for such duties instead. In those communities where the segregation of the genders is severe enough to warrant separate ceremonies, the task falls to the Nuin (priest acolyte) instead, but nuin are considered apprentices rather than fully-fledged priests.
  • Sigil

    (Also known as Fensigil and Fenn sigil.) Many communes task their males with the protection and defence of their commune and its territories. Like Furies, they have special license to guard against outside threats and, in some of the stricter or more xenophobic communities, keep trespassers at bay. A sigil's job description can vary, with some patrolling beyond a village's perimeter while others only guard the recognised border.

Racial slurs

Just calling them "Nymph" is insulting to a Sidhe, especially when they come from a strictly segregated commune.

Partly, it's to do with the myth that there are no male Nymphs because they all "look alike", which wounds their male pride. However, Sylvan society teaches Sidhe that females are of a higher station, and to lump them in together under the name "Nymph" is to elevate the male and insult both genders.

Unfortunately, few Elysians? realise this, unless they've mingled with Nymphs enough to recognise the separation, so the insult is quite a common one. Those Sidhe new to the cities tend to react poorly at first but, with time, they learn to just get on with it.

Gender Roles

Sylvan society is very female-oriented, leaving the males aside as a sort of lower-class citizen. It's not a deliberate attempt to subjugate the Sidhe -- and never has been -- but Nature has always been seen as more of a female "thing" so it's natural that a Nature-oriented culture evolved as a matriarchal society.

There is still room for the Sidhe, however. While the females aim to keep the Balance and adhere to the Sylvan Creed, forsaking physical violence of any kind and using their elements solely for self-defence, their males have always had a greater, if limited, freedom. By nature, Sidhe are more combative and aggressive, less tied to the Creed and more willing to take up arms (though only though use of the elements and their bond with Nature) to defend not only themselves and their own demesnes but their entire communes and associated territories.

Perhaps because of their nature, more Sidhe than Nymphs become Nereids, and where female Nereids are often shunned, males are far more welcomed. But the differences don't always end there: Sidhe who bond with any other element can be just as aggressive in the defence of their homes, and are sometimes closer to the Zanaryans (in terms of wielding their element) than they are to their own kin.

Related Pages

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