Warning Spoilers Ahead!
“Long ago, the Astral Wizards of Celestia created powerful magic using the energy of the Stars, the Moon, and the Sun.
The sorceress Morganthe, a Queen of the Shadow Web, wanted the secrets of Celestian magic at all costs. The Celestians refused her, so she raised a Dark Army and sent it against them. After decades of battle, the Astral Wizards realized their world would fall. They summoned the Storm Titan to defeat Morganthe’s legions and to bring their world safety.
The Storm Titan betrayed the Celestians by sinking their world beneath the Waves together with Morganthe’s invading forces. Realizing they were doomed, the Celestians raised mighty Domes to protect their treasured city from the waves, though it was too late. They perished along with Morganthe’s invading army. Celestia was lost to the Spiral, its Spiral Door closed forever.”
From Fire to Water
Celestia and its People
They say that the Celestians were an incredibly advanced magical society. Many say they were ahead of their time. Its people were both powerful and wise. Peaceful, intelligent beings. They were devout in the pursuit of knowledge across a wide array of subjects not only astral magic. A culture of Wizards and inventors creating magical contrivances. Items to aid in their everyday lives. They were a culture of people who looked closely at the effects of their choices. Not only upon themselves but the Spiral as well.
The Origins of the Spheres
A Gap In Time
This is where the early history of Celestia ends. Anything between this period and the war against Morganthe vanished. As a result of Celestia sinking beneath the waves, everything disappeared. What might have been is generally unknown. Events that might have transpired? The marvels of the Celestian’s contrivances? The Celestians advances in the realms of magic, science, and society all disappeared. This is until new information emerges. Until then one thing is certain. Most of Celestia’s history lies not in its murky beginning, but rather in its unfortunate demise.
The Beginning of the End
The Crustacean Empire
Once again, time would move on and the location of Celestia became lost to the Spiral. That is, until a certain Thurston Plunkett rediscovered the world. With the support of the Spiral Geographical Society, Plunkett secured a ship and crew. He then led an archeological expedition to Celestia. They were hoping to learn it’s secrets. Plunkett thought they might even determine exactly what caused its disappearance.
The Skyship Explorer would be shot down upon arrival. Crashlanding on the Floating Land, the crew and expedition became lost and separated. Despite this setback, Plunkett and most of the remaining expedition would carry on. They began the construction of several exploratory underwater domes. Once completed and drained the archeological exploration of Celestia would begin. Unbeknownst to the expedition, in rediscovering Celestia they had angered the Crustacean Empire. They also opened the door once more to Morganthe and her forces. The Crustaceans and Shadow Web would come, to put a stop to the exploration. They would raid the uncovered ruins, splitting up the remaining Marleybonians. A distress call would go out across the Spiral and only a certain Wizard in Wizard City would hear it.
What Happened to the Celestians?
Not as Dead as We Think...
Gone but Not Forgotten
On top of this there’s the matter of Qyburn Stellargaze in the Arcanum. He remarked in his Bio back in February of 2017 that he hasn’t been home to Celestia in at least a millennium or two. Provided Qyburn is being serious with that remark, that would mean the Celestians are not only an ancient people but also long-lived ones as well. This adds an interesting layer to the entire situation, allow me to paint the entire picture.
Morganthe invades after being denied Astral magic. As the siege drags on, the Celestians move their civilians to the safety of another world. A world known only to the Celestians (likely one from their Grand Spiral chart). Being so long-lived they could simply wait out the Morgantine invasion if things didn’t go as planned. In the process the Celestians also take any of their knowledge that isn’t nailed down. Taking the most important and portable objects: books, tomes, scrolls, and etc., things which likely pertained to history, magic, and culture. While leaving behind the less critical things. Writings on less important and less sensitive subjects and things that couldn’t be easily relocated. Such as the Astral Archivist, obelisks, monoliths, carvings, pedestals, frescos, and so on. This would explain why we don’t encounter any civilian ghosts. It also explains why we don’t have a lot of information on Celestia’s history before Morganthe’s invasion.
If the Titan fought with them as planned Morganthe’s army wouldn’t stand a chance. But, if something went wrong the Celestian’s could retreat to the safety of their magical domes and let the Titan wreak havoc on Morganthe’s army. When the Titan betrayed the Celestians unexpectedly, there wasn’t time for the retreat. Both sides perished as a result, which might explain why we don’t see any Celestian spirits or Shadow Web spirits inside the District of the Stars.
The Last Nail
Because there was no one left, no message was sent and so Celestia faded into obscurity until the Marleybonians arrived. Perhaps we weren’t the only ones to receive Thurston Plunkett’s SOS. If any Celestians were listening, the mere mention of the Shadow Queen’s return, it would be more than enough to keep them where they are. If this theory is true there could be a remote population of Celestians in some hidden corner of the Spiral. Waiting, patiently, for the day they can finally return home.
Reading the Celestian's Writing
It is fascinating to note, that the various inscriptions found on walls, obelisks, and other objects throughout Celestia are not gibberish. These symbols are a monoalphabetic substation cipher, meaning for every letter of our alphabet there is a corresponding character that never changes. So, while the individual symbols are different any message or word written in the cipher will always directly correspond to the other set of characters, for example, the word “loom” is written and spelled with the same corresponding characters in either script. If you know all the characters or have the translation key to the cipher cracking the code is a cinch, and the inscriptions on the Stone of Mazzaroth give us just that.
The Stone of Mazzaroth
The Celestian Base Camp
The District of the Stars
Across the entirety of Celestia, on the trims of many floors, walls, and ceilings, you can find the words “Moon Sun Stars” written repeatedly in that order.
As a nice final touch, the message written beneath the name of the world in this image says:
*Beneath the waves the stars still shine*
While I may have searched Celestia from top to bottom for these messages, its very possible I may have missed some. If you have found any more messages in your adventures please share them below, I do enjoy these sorts of things.
4 thoughts on “The Forgotten Lore of Celestia”
I think the part about Celestians living for a very long time is an interesting part of W101 lore, because I actually think it’s possible all wizards live for a very long time. Morganthe had been around for a while, and even longer than that, Ambrose has been alive. Ambrose may not be entirely human, given his relationship to the Treeminders, but Malistaire and Cyrus are from Dragonspyre, and so they’re possibly pretty old. There are lots of characters who seem to have been around for quite some time, like the Alhazred, King Artorius, Lydia Greyrose, and others. Just makes me think.
It’s fascinating you should bring that up, Garrett. While digging through the Wizard101 Message Boards I stumbled upon a post titled “Storytime 2016” that positively filled with all sorts of juicy lore bits. Here’s the link for those who would like to read through it (it’s really interesting some of it): https://www.wizard101.com/forum/ravenwood-commons/storytime-2016-8ad6a415523abbf50152846521182fa1?page=1
According to Librarian Fitzhume, while time here on Earth is governed by the laws of nature, time in the Spiral is governed by the laws of magic. Meaning that time moves differently between separate worlds. Hence, we have worlds like Marleybone which are extremely advanced, worlds like Azteca that a seemingly primitive, and worlds like Dragonspyre that have fallen to ruin. Knowing this fact, a day in Avalon could possibly equate to years in Marleybone (that’s just an example). Fitxhume also said, given Ravenwood’s connection to Bartleby, it’s likely it has the Wizard City own unique relationship with time.
So in the cases of the characters you mentioned, I don’t think it’s entirely a matter of magic (magic probably plays into it some). It’s also a matter of location and how much time one spends there. Still, it is fascinating food for thought, well done!
I am always fascinated with the lore the Spiral holds, especially when it comes to Celestia. The matter with a large gap of history vanished, along with the theories mentioned makes it likely for some sort of update to arrive like it did with Dragonspyre in the recent dungeon.
Also I am definitely looking forward to the next article on Grizzleheim. It is one of my favorite worlds, and just as mysterious as Celestia in my opinion. I do have a theory where Nidavellir was once home to the Empyrean Dwarves. According to Norse myth, Nidavellir is the realm that was home to the dwarves. My theory is summarized as such:
When the Spiral was created Grandmother Raven seeked guardians to protected the Fire and Ice chain, and took notice to the Dwarves in Grizzleheim. The Fire and Ice Dwarves, ancestors to the ones we know now, made strides in the advancement in their technology and engineering. She saw them worthy, asked for their help, and they agreed. So they packed their things and inventions (which could explain why there’s no artifacts n Nidavellir) and settled in the Athanors, where they worked in harmony until their civil war generations later. As for their ancestral home, it remains abandoned and in ruin for a long time until the arrival of new inhabitants: the Grendels.
Again this is a summarized version, and I can go on forever. If you would like to hear more, let me know!
It is always pleasing to hear new theories from fellow theorist! While I won’t spoil anything for the next article, I will say Nidavellir is somewhat touched upon within the lore of the game. So stay tuned! But your theory is definitely an interesting one, and not beyond the realms of possibility.
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