Night elf culture speaks of both ancients and Ancients (note the capital A). The ancients (lower-case) are the tree-like sages and protectors of the night elves. The other Ancients (upper-case) are old demigods, like Cenarius, who assisted the night elves at various points throughout history.[1] (APG 195) The wisps act in unison with the night elves and serve to strengthen the demigod-like trees known as the Ancients.[2] (W3Man 119)

Ancients (demigods)

The Ancients (aka "Ancient Guardians"[3] (WC3Man 61)) of the night elves are treated like deities, perhaps more so than other Eternals. Primal spirits of the natural world when it was young, they personify its most distinct and most powerful qualities. Although several of them were effectively destroyed during the War of the Ancients and in later conflicts, they are honored still by races such as centaur, furbolgs, night elves and quilboar. Elune the Moon Goddess, Azeroth's one true deity, remains a focus of worship for the night elves and other races while the world grows warier of what the changed Queen Azshara may attempt in the coming future.[4] (S&L 71)

Most inhabitants of northern Kalimdor - namely the night elves, but also the furbolgs and the satyrs - worship or revere the Ancients. While night elves worship Elune, they revere most of the other Ancients, especially Cenarius, the only Ancient to spend considerable time on the physical plane. They also honor the moon goddess's companions including Agamaggan, Aviana and Malorne. The furbolgs venerate the bear twins, Ursoc and Ursol; and the evil satyrs revere Lord Xavius. The Ancients rarely interfere with life on Azeroth, but these races hold fast in their fervant beliefs that the Ancients exist and are watching events unfold.[5] (WoWRPG 250)

The ancients (see-below) are also members of the "Ancients"[2] (W3Man #?).

Famous Ancients

Unnamed Ancients

  • Wolverine guardian
  • tiny red Fox
  • Winged panther
  • Pixies
  • Reptilian warrior
  • male oak figures with hoods.
  • A stick bug race.
  • A bearded warrior half the height of a night elf and clad in brown leather fought during the War of the Ancients. He rode atop a pair of white wolves using a rein in one hand. In his other hand, he held a weapon resembling a sickle — which he would throw like a boomerang. The sickle would rip through the demons as it spun and return to the hand of the squat warrior. He was a foe on par with any that the demons had ever faced[6] (Sund 186) Note: Perhaps it has some kind of connection with dwarves.

Ancients ("ancients", demigod-like trees)

Ancients ("Ancients"[7] (WC3man 57) or "ancients"[1] (APG )) are demigod-like trees[3] (WC3Man #?). They are some of the most important creatures in night elf society. They resemble sapient trees, but their wisdom and insight are almost unparalleled. Many of them are thousands of years old. They assist their night elf allies with guidance, education (particularly in the druidic arts), and protection - they are large and powerful, and are protectors of the forest. They are large enough to carry night elves, and some are so enormous that a few night elves make their homes in them.

Most ancients resemble deciduous trees that live in temperate climates, such as oaks and maples. A few evergreen ancients also exist. No reliable reports of tropical ancients have yet surfaced, but the night elves claim that they can exist - and if a colony of night elves moves to the tropics and brings along the appropriate druidic magic, tropical ancients may indeed grace Azeroth's surface. Ancients speak Darnassian, though a few also speak Common. Their voices sound like ancient trees creaking in the wind.

Ancients are traditionally friends of night elves and good-hearted, but the recent Third War makes them suspicious of non-night elves. They give outsiders a chance to prove their good intentions; but if roused to anger ancients are implacable foes.

Some ancients patrol their territories, but most spend their time standing still, virtually indistinguishable from normal trees. An ancient may watch intruders, perhaps moving in secret to dog their path. If the outsiders do nothing to harm the forest or nature's balance, the ancient leaves them alone. If the outsiders appear to share the same ideals as the ancient (destroying corrupted creatures or protecting trees from other intruders, for example), the ancient reveals itself and lends assistance. If outsiders abuse the land, the ancient rumbles to a fury and attacks with swings of its arms.[1] (APG 194, 195)

Giant, sentient trees that sometimes serve as advisors and protectors of the night elves as NPCs, but also wander the lands as hostile monsters. They lack apparent independent construction of settlements, but are otherwise highly intelligent. They can also root into the ground to become more of a tree. The WoW ancients do not seem to utilize this ability.

Male figures with hooded faces fought in the war of the ancients. The little flesh that could be seen was made of oak bark.[6] (Sund 186)

Additional info

  • Several treants also have the term 'ancient' in their name, but these are much smaller and weaker than regular ancients.
  • Some ancients are classified by the game as being of the Elemental creature type, others are giants. It is not clear why, as no distinct difference between the two kinds of Ancients can be brought to light. In the RPG, ancients are never Elemental but instead large ambulatory plants.

Corrupted Ancient as seen in Warcraft III

Known types of ancients

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