|Stag Antlers in a Circle|
|Divine Rank||Greater God|
|Portfolio||Animals, Nature, Life, Fertility, The Earth, Wealth, and the Underworld|
|Domains||(speculative) Animal, Death, Earth, Healing, Plant, Fey, Greed, Hunt, Cavern, Darkness|
|Home Plane||Prime Material|
|Worshippers||Druids, Rangers, Nature Lovers|
Cernunnos, also known as The Horned (Man/God), is a Celtic deity... and that is actually as much as we know about him! No, seriously; Cernunnos survives only in various Celtic artistic depictions, which show a male figure with the horns of a stag, and a name on the Pillar of the Boatmen, a 1st century Gallo-Roman monument. Whilst figures like him appear throughout various Celtic splinters, no real information survives; from his surviving depictions, it has been theorized that he may have been a God of any or all of the following subjects: Animals, Nature, Life, Fertility, The Earth, Wealth, and the Underworld. In fact, so little information on the deity survives from the actual Celtic faiths that he is instead mostly known through the use of his name to identify the "Horned God" figure in various branches of Neopaganism, predominantly Wicca, where he is considered the God of Seasons and the Cycle of Life. He has also been named as one of the gods leading the Wild Hunt in some sources... but then, so too have Odin, Woden, and even his fellow Celtic god Arawn.
Such is the obscurity of Cernunnos and the limited amount of information presented on him that Gygax left him out of both of the original Dungeons & Dragons sourcebooks on deities, with Cernunnos failing to appear in either OD&D's Book VII: Gods, Demi-gods and Heroes or Deities & Demigods for Advanced Dungeons & Dragons! Instead, the only time that Cernunnos has unarguably appeared has been in the article "Tuatha de Danan: A Revised Celtic Mythos" in Dragon Magazine #65 for AD&D 1e. Here, the following information was presented:
- Cerunnos appears as a large man with the hooves, legs and antlers of a stag. His body is covered with the fur of a stag, and he wears a short, full beard. The Horned God is the essence of Nature on the Prime Material Plane, and hence cannot be killed. If his physical body receives 400 points of damage, his essence disperses, and he will form another body in 24 hours.
- Like Nature itself, he is absolutely neutral, and may sometimes act in what seems to be a mindless manner. He can be as violent and unrelenting as the strongest hurricane, but can also be as gentle as a peaceful morning in May. His responsibility is maintaining the balance of nature, and he will gladly aid or even work alongside anyone striving for this goal. His charisma is based not so much on his appearance as it is on his “aura,” which radiates to any creature a comforting sense of what is “natural” and “right” to that creature.
- Cerunnos can summon any wilderness creature to his aid, including those of a magical nature. He is not able to Gate them in, however, and nearby creatures appropriate to the terrain must be determined by the DM. His summoning has a five-mile radius.
- Cerunnos carries a heavy oaken staff which strikes for 6-60 points of damage. His spell casting is instantaneous.
- When Cerunnos is on a Wild Hunt, he is influenced and driven by a power beyond his control, which reduces him to a single-minded and almost berserker state. He will not speak until the Hunt is finished. He will not summon additional creatures, depending on his Pack until killed, then he will fight alone. He will ignore all but the lowest-level of his spells, preferring to fight hand-to-hand. This single-mindedness is not a normal condition for him, but Cerunnos can be just as violent, while retaining full control of his powers, when in a nonberserk state of mind.
After this one entry, Cernunnos vanished into the aether. The Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition deity called, simply, the Master of the Wild Hunt could be looked at as a representation of Cernunnos, but it could just as easily be any of the gods associated with the Wild Hunt. Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition did use an alternative spelling of the name, Cerunnos, as the name of an Archfey based on the Master of the Wild Hunt.
|Cernunnos, The Stag Lord, The Horned Lord|
|Stag with Jeweled Antlers|
|Divine Rank||Empyreal Lord|
|Portfolio||Fertility, Seasons, Wild Animals|
|Domains||Animal, Chaos, Good, Plant
Subdomains: Azata, Feather, Fur, Growth
|Home Plane||Briarbough (Elysium)|
|Worshippers||Intelligent plant creatures/Animal kin, Good fey, Mortal druids/rangers, & Some elven fighters/rogues|
In Pathfinder 1e, Cernunnos appeared in the splatbooks "Chronicles of the Righteous" and "Bestiary 4", the latter of which presented his physical stats. In the Great Beyond, Cernunnos is an Empyreal Lord of Azata stock. Known for his mercurial temperament, The Stag Lord aims to set right natural balances that are out of kilter and indulge in his passions. Cernunnos favors decisive action and, though he rarely makes a rash decision, he will sometimes let his anger overcome him and descend himself into Hell or the Abyss to exact revenge on demons and devils he has a personal vendetta for. Cernunnos is a wise and powerful Empyreal Lord and is thought to be almost a god.
Cernunnos was one of the first being the Fey Lords created and he was the first one to leave the First World. When war comes to the outer planes Cernunnos is usually counseling action and decisive moves, while his counterpart, Korada, is usually counseling caution.
Cernunnos gets along well with most deities and demi-gods, but evil deities are treated with distrust. Cernunnos is a powerful supporter of Desna, as well as all of the other nature gods and most of the good gods too.
Cernunnos lives in Briarbough, a demi-plane connected to Elysium. It is filled with trees and bears a strong resemblance to the First World.
Cernunnos presents himself as a muscular elf with dull fur clothes that bear drawings of birds in flight or leaping animals.
The faithful of Cernunnos are mainly intelligent plant creatures or animal kin, good aligned fey, mortal Druids or Rangers, and some Elven Fighters or Rogues.