(Redirected from Dawnfather)
Prime Deity
Official art of Pelor the Dawnfather, by Svetoslav Petrov from Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 4.[art 1]
Symbols of Pelor.[art 2][art 3]
Deity information
Other names
  • The Dawnfather[1]
  • The Dawn Father[2]
  • The Primordial Light[3]
ProvinceHealing, Sun
SymbolBright, eight-pointed star
AlignmentNeutral Good[4]
Home planeFields of Elysium[4]
RealmFortress of the Sun[4]
WorshipersFarmers, common folk
Holy dayHighsummer (Sydenstar 15th)
Major templesChantry of the Dawn
Cleric domains
Vestiges of DivergencePlate of the Dawnmartyr
First seen"Elysium" (1x104)

Pelor, the Dawnfather is the god of the sun, summer, and agriculture, and is generally worshiped by farmers and people who live off the land.[5] He is one of the prime creator gods of Exandria.[6] He planted the Sun Tree in Whitestone. As an NPC, Pelor is played by Matthew Mercer.

Description[edit | edit source]

Appearance[edit | edit source]

Pelor wears a white cloak over an intricate golden plate armor. Where a head would be, instead, there is a burning star. An almost featureless male head burns within the corona.[7] When his face was revealed to Vex'ahlia, he had soft cheeks, a hairless head, and bright, warm eyes.[8]

Personality[edit | edit source]

Pelor comes across as a stern but fair god, telling Vox Machina it is their decision to destroy the eye of Vecna. Although he challenges Vox Machina for asking for his blessing even though none are faithful to him, he seemed pleased when Vex successfully completed her trial.[9]

Biography[edit | edit source]

The Founding and the Age of Arcanum[edit | edit source]

Official art of Pelor battling Tharizdun, by Svetoslav Petrov from Critical Role: Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 4.[art 4]

During the Founding, when the Primordials' destructive forces made it impossible for the gods' newly created races to survive and the Betrayer Gods sided with the Primordials in preferring to wipe out the mortal races and try anew elsewhere, Pelor was one of the Prime Deities who fought to protect the mortals. Pelor and Melora in particular were responsible for casting away the elementals[10] and sealing away two Primordials, Emperor of Fire and the Empress of Earth, under Mount Ygora.[11] Once the Primordials and Betrayer Gods were defeated and banished to other planes, it was safe for the new races to inhabit Exandria.[12]

During the Age of Arcanum, Vecna's attempt at the Ritual of Seeding was interrupted by the Beacon of Arms, an army under the banner of the Dawnfather. Led by Yos Varda, they successfully defeated Vecna and his forces, though very few members of the army survived.[13]

The Calamity[edit | edit source]

After Archmage Vespin Chloras broke open the Betrayer Gods' prisons, Pelor and the other Prime Deities aided the citizens of Vasselheim against the Betrayer Gods. They ultimately succeeded, and began preparing for war.[14] During the war, retrospectively called the Calamity, Pelor worked with a few other Prime Deities to defeat Torog, the Crawling King. Moradin and Sehanine had built a trap for Torog,[15] and Pelor and Sarenrae drew the Betrayer above ground, where Pelor pierced Torog's body with thousands of lances of sunlight and Sarenrae imprisoned him. Torog was eventually banished to a sliver of the Far Realm bordering the deepest parts of the Underdark,[16] though this was accomplished later, as Sarenrae had been betrayed before the sealing of the Betrayer Gods began.[17]

Towards the end of the Calamity, Ioun baited Tharizdun to her central ziggurat but was nearly destroyed in the process. Pelor's vengeful battle with the Chained Oblivion was so violent it created the valley where the Parchwood Timberlands currently stands, and raised the Alabaster Sierras.[18] Pelor used all of his power to beat down Tharizdun, then chased the defeated Tharizdun to Gatshadow, where the Rites of Prime Banishment were used for the first time: he attached four Prime Trammels to the mad god and banished it to the Abyss.[19] He then returned to the place where Ioun's ziggurat had sunk beneath the earth and planted the seed that would become the Sun Tree.[18]

When the Betrayer Gods were all defeated, Pelor and the other Prime Deities retreated from the Material Plane and created the Divine Gate behind them in the hopes of preventing the Betrayer Gods from crossing over into mortal realms again.[14]

Campaign 1: Vox Machina[edit | edit source]

When Vox Machina traveled to the Fields of Elysium to speak to the Dawnfather, they found themselves in an giant orchard, home to Fortress of the Sun, Pelor's citadel. Gold-plated, with many humongous towers and spires that both resemble a military fortress and a large steepled church.[20] After speaking to the celestial entities that guard the citadel, Vox Machina were let in to see Pelor.

Vox Machina told Pelor about Vecna's ambition to ascend to Godhood, Pelor thanked them for the information and opened the doors for them to leave. When they presented Pelor with the eye of Vecna, he offered to destroy it. Once it was destroyed, Vex asked Pelor about the goddess Ioun, as they needed information and power to defeat Vecna. When Keyleth asked for his help, Pelor asked why he should grant one of Vox Machina his blessings, when he had champions across Exandria who had already proven themselves worthy. Initially Keyleth offered to be his champion, but Pelor rejected her as she had no faith in the gods. Vex'ahlia then offered herself for his blessing, which he granted due to her budding faith and connection to Whitestone.[21]

Pelor told Vex that her challenge was to ascend the Tower of Zenith before the hourglasses ran out. When Vex successfully completed the challenge by diving into the fire at the top of the tower, she entered a trance-like state. At the bottom of the tower, Pelor asked the rest of Vox Machina what Vex meant to them. Keyleth answered that Vex gave her her power. Scanlan answered that she had flaws, but that she did everything to protect her family, and was the most perfect of all of them. Grog answered that she taught him and cheered him on. Pike called her a sister. Percy called her his heart and his judgment, and his betrothed. Finally, Vax answered that she is every hope he had; himself, but better. Once they were finished, Vex descended from the tower with the blessing of the Dawnfather.[22]

Pelor then told Vox Machina that it was too late to prevent the ascension of Vecna, and that killing a god was beyond most deities. He explained that to diminish and seal Vecna away forever was the only option, as Pelor once did with the Chained Oblivion, using Prime Trammels. He explained that trammels were created using a sliver of a god's power, and that Ioun had the design. Ioun had been in hiding since the Calamity, after being wounded by Tharizdun, so Pelor showed them a map of the forest around the Pools of Wittebak, and explained that the key to Ioun's location was there.[23]

Pelor then gave Vex a bead of divinity, and told her that it would be able to make one Prime Trammel. He told her this was all he could safely do, and encouraged Vox Machina to strike against Vecna soon.[24]

Campaign 2: The Mighty Nein[edit | edit source]

While pursuing Obann, the Mighty Nein found a chamber below the Chantry of the Dawn, an ancient temple to Pelor in Rexxentrum. In the chamber, they find a large obelisk with Celestial runes reading "eternal", "bound", "forever", "at bay", "left to darkness", "secret". There are three thick, gold chains at the top of the obelisk, as this was one of the shackles keeping Tharizdun chained in the Abyss.[25]

Campaign 3: Bells Hells[edit | edit source]

Mortal arrogance makes unions⁣ with the forbidden scourge. The ruddy moon beckons ⁣over the lands of Marquet. Child reborn of⁣ my grace and will, I command you, strike out against those ⁣that seek to snuff our light. These gifts I grant you⁣ are your sword and shield against the ⁣growing darkness. Forsake these gifts, ignore our charge, and be abandoned.

Faith needs ⁣not logic, nor truth, but unerring conviction. The Red End⁣ stirs in its slumber. Do not let it wake.

— The Dawnfather, to Deanna[26]

Deanna, a cleric of the Dawnfather, upon learning from the rest of Team Wildemount about the happenings of the apogee solstice, remarked that it had felt to her as if her deity had turned away in fear.[27] She later visited the Light Above Sanctum in Uthodurn and spoke with Evodon Leeds, one of the keepers, who also found that the Dawnfather, along with all other deities, seemed distant. Deanna reassured him that this did not seem retaliatory, and encouraged him to reopen the temple for the people.[28]

FRIDA, after speaking with Deanna about their potential lycanthropy, prayed to the Dawnfather with her despite their conflicted feelings about their deity as the party traveled to Molaesmyr.[29]

Immediately after the Changebringer spoke to FCG and told him to take up her banner and prevent the Red End from awakening, the Dawnfather visited Deanna and commanded her to do the same.[26]

Meanwhile, Team Issylra traveled to Hearthdell, a town where missionaries of the Dawnfather from Vasselheim had arrived about twenty years prior, to the dismay of many of the people, who followed an elemental worshiping faith known as The Loam and the Leaf. They learned the Dawnfather presence had significantly increased in the past few months,[30] and Elder Abaddina, a spiritual leader of The Loam and the Leaf, used the party's arrival to encourage an attack on the Sunrise Sanctuary to drive out the Dawnfather faction.[31] They did so, killing the Flameguide, a Judicator, and a Dawnborn angel summoned by the Flameguide's prayer.[32] Prism found documents indicating that the missionary efforts were part of a general expansion plan from Vasselheim.[33]

After Team Issylra and Team Wildemount reunited and Deanna learned about Hearthdell, she stepped away to cast Commune privately. She asked Pelor first if Bells Hells could save the gods, and received uncertainty. She then asked him if his disciples were perpetuating harm, and he told her that they were acting for the greater good of Exandria. Finally, she asked him if he was worth saving, at which point he abruptly ended the spell.[34] Deanna, FRIDA, and Prism parted ways with Bells Hells to investigate further, and as they left, Deanna covered her Dawnfather symbol with yarn.[35]

Relationships[edit | edit source]

The Sun Tree[edit | edit source]

During the Calamity, Tharizdun grievously wounded Ioun. Once Tharizdun was defeated, Pelor returned to this spot and planted a single seed in the ground, and from it grew a massive tree, which would become a symbol of protection within the dark forest surrounding it.[18]

Many years later, the de Rolo family found the Sun Tree while traveling through the Alabaster Sierras. They recognized the tree as a blessing from the Dawnfather, and began to build their city around it.[36]

Vex'ahlia[edit | edit source]

While undertaking the ceremony to become Mistress of the Grey Hunt, Vex'ahlia meditated at the Sun Tree for a vision from the Dawnfather, who showed her a grey render.[37]

Vex became a Champion of Pelor as part of Vox Machina's quest to defeat Vecna. She completed his challenge and in return was granted a boon to aid in combat. Pelor also gave her a bead of divinity, to be used in creating the Divine Trammels that are a part of the ritual to banish Vecna.[38]

Worship[edit | edit source]

Commandments of the Dawnfather
  • Be ever vigilant for evil. People are quick to forget the lessons of the past.
  • Help relieve the suffering of the innocent.
  • Deliver the light of the Dawnfather where darkness dwells, and do so with kindness, compassion, and mercy.

— from the Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn[39]

Pelor is revered by those who hunt aberrations.[1] Because the drow of Tal'Dorei have long been besieged by aberrations, their deep hatred of those enemies leads some drow adventurers to become paladins of Pelor.[40]

Pelor's holy day is Highsummer, on the 15th of Sydenstar. Feasts on this day are common across Exandria, and the Dwendalian Empire uses it as a day for intensive military recruitment.[41] In Emon, this day kicks off a week of festivities, with gift-giving and feasts.[1]

At many temples of the Dawnfather, he is typically represented by braziers shaped like his armored body, with the bowl and flame of the brazier representing his star-like head.[42][43]

Religious leaders within temples are often called "Keeper",[44] and "Flameguide" is a title for high-level missionaries.[45]

Artifacts[edit | edit source]

The Dawnfather created the Plate of the Dawnmartyr, the "Beacon of Protection" to the chosen of Pelor.[46] The plate was originally given to the High Priest of Pelor, Duana, as she fell in the battle of Ghor Dranas.[47] It is a set of brass armor, and when worn its beautiful silver inlays and cut rubies glow.[48] The wearer is immune to fire damage, and when knocked unconscious it releases a blast of healing flame and the wearer regains 1 hit point.[49]

Issylra[edit | edit source]

The Dawnfather has a following in Vasselheim of Issylra who brought their worship to the village of Hearthdell around 823 PD, building Sunrise Sanctuary in his honor,[50] protected by both Bastions and Judicators. Approximately twenty years later, the temple was occupied and demolished by the local villagers with the help of Bells Hells.

Tal'Dorei[edit | edit source]

As of 810 PD, about three-quarters of the population of Whitestone worshiped Pelor,[51] gathering in the Zenith temple devoted to his worship.[52] During the Briarwoods' rule, Duke Vedmire was tasked to oversee the place, but he left it to ruin, and only after the reclamation of Whitestone, Zenith was rebuilt.[53]

Pelor is also commonly worshipped in the Cliffkeep Mountains[54] and the Stormcrest Mountains (in particular, Bronbog).[55] However, he has a smaller following in the Bladeshimmer Shoreline region;[56] Emon's Temple District has a relatively small temple to Pelor.[57]

Wildemount[edit | edit source]

Pelor is one of six deities whose worship is permitted in the Dwendalian Empire.[58] He is also worshiped in the Menagerie Coast and in the Diarchy of Uthodurn.

  • The Chantry of the Dawn: An ancient temple to the Dawnfather on which Rexxentrum was originally founded, now restored into an awe-inspiring cathedral.[59]
  • The Shrine of the Dawn: A temple in the center of The Signet Wall ward of Zadash.[60]
  • The Sunfall Sanctuary: A temple in The Crescents ward of Port Damali.[61]
  • The Light Above Sanctum: A temple on the Volition Disk of Uthodurn.[62]

Marquet[edit | edit source]

The Dawnfather Temple: A place of worship located in Jrusar's Lantern Spire. It surrounds the Prakash Pyre[63] burning through the night.[64]

Known worshipers[edit | edit source]

Appearances and mentions[edit | edit source]

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Mentions[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 15.
  2. Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, Chapter 1: "Story of Wildemount", p. 24.
  3. The Chronicles of Exandria Vol. II: The Legend of Vox Machina, p. 174.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, Chapter 1: "Story of Wildemount", p. 21.
  5. "The Sun Tree" (1x28) at 2:13:44.
  6. "Elysium" (1x104) at 2:22:38.
  7. "Elysium" (1x104) at 2:11:03.
  8. "Elysium" (1x104) at 2:48:16.
  9. "Elysium" (1x104) at 2:23:25.
  10. "A Name Is Earned" (1x49) at 3:34:27.
  11. "Excelsior" (E3x01) at 3:04:40.
  12. Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 6.
  13. "The Endless Atheneum" (1x106) at 1:18:44.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 7.
  15. "The King's Cage" (2x69) at 59:19.
  16. Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, Chapter 1: "Story of Wildemount", p. 28.
  17. "Elysium" (1x104) at 52:05.
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 51.
  19. "The Endless Atheneum" (1x106) at 1:09:35.
  20. "Elysium" (1x104) at 1:23:09.
  21. "Elysium" (1x104) at 2:22:59.
  22. "Elysium" (1x104) at 2:41:05.
  23. "Elysium" (1x104) at 2:50:24.
  24. "Elysium" (1x104) at 2:54:42.
  25. "The Cathedral" (2x86) at 3:57:14.
  26. 26.0 26.1 "Escape From The Past" (3x58) at 3:44:54.
  27. "Far From The Others" (3x52) at 2:55:55.
  28. "Hope Within History" (3x55) at 2:23:02.
  29. "By Goat or By Boat" (3x56) at 3:23:50.
  30. "Faith or Famine" (3x60) at 1:20:09.
  31. "Faith or Famine" (3x60) at 2:52:52.
  32. "Crisis of Faith" (3x61).
  33. "Crisis of Faith" (3x61) at 4:16:13.
  34. "Reunited" (3x64) at 3:02:00.
  35. "Reunited" (3x64) at 4:12:49.
  36. Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 48.
  37. "Jugs and Rods" (1x94) at 2:52:48.
  38. "Elysium" (1x104) at 2:47:12.
  39. Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn, Chapter 2: "Allegiances of Tal'Dorei", p. 32.
  40. Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 24.
  41. Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, Chapter 1: "Story of Wildemount", p. 24.
  42. "The Cathedral" (2x86) at 3:36:56.
  43. "Hope Within History" (3x55) at 2:23:32.
  44. "Hope Within History" (3x55) at 2:24:20.
  45. "Faith or Famine" (3x60) at 3:06:35.
  46. "A Name Is Earned" (1x49) at 4:45:15.
  47. 47.0 47.1 "Brawl in the Arches" (1x76) at 3:28:48.
  48. "Where the Cards Fall" (1x75) at 1:31:50.
  49. 49.0 49.1 Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 115.
  50. "Faith or Famine" (3x60) at 3:05:11.
  51. "The Sun Tree" (1x28) at 2:14:20.
  52. "Whispers" (1x29) at 23:43.
  53. "Duskmeadow" (1x57) at 3:28:53. The process began in 811 PD and has likely finished by 843 PD
  54. Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 63.
  55. Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, pp. 72–73.
  56. Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 87.
  57. Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 90.
  58. "Steam and Conversation" (2x09) at 46:11.
  59. Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, Chapter 3: "Wildemount Gazetteer", p. 107.
  60. Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, Chapter 3: "Wildemount Gazetteer", p. 95.
  61. Explorer's Guide to Wildemount, Chapter 3: "Wildemount Gazetteer", p. 74.
  62. "Hope Within History" (3x55) at 59:33.
  63. "On the Trail of a Killer" (3x04) at 3:24:21.
  64. "Trial by Firelight" (3x02) at 1:17:19.
  65. "The Endless Atheneum" (1x106) at 1:20:26.
  66. "Whispers" (1x29) at 48:18.
  67. See Matt's notes for "Harvest Close" (2x17).
  68. "Far From The Others" (3x52) at 53:49.
  69. "Far From The Others" (3x52) at 1:30:53.
  70. "Far From The Others" (3x52) at 1:18:47.
  71. "Hope Within History" (3x55) at 2:26:45.
  72. "Faith or Famine" (3x60) at 3:04:08.
  73. Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn, Chapter 3: "Tal'Dorei Gazetteer", p. 84.


  1. Official art of Pelor the Dawnfather, by Svetoslav Petrov from Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 4. This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as fair use of the material under United States copyright law.
  2. Symbol of Pelor from Critical Role: Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting.
  3. Symbol of Pelor from Explorer's Guide to Wildemount by Claudio Pozas. (source)
  4. Official art of Pelor battling Tharizdun, by Svetoslav Petrov from Critical Role: Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 4. This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as fair use of the material under United States copyright law.