The Mythic Age lasted from prehistory until circa 1000 BC, when the Iron Age began and mankind realized that they could shape the world through effort and cold hard change. This loss of faith in whim and fancy was the beginning of the end of an age populated by dragons, true fae, and magic throughout the land.
Also called the Time of Legends; the oldest times, this was an age when the world of dreams existed side by side of the mortal realm. No barriers separated them and the magical energies crossed freely from one to the other and throughout the world. When those energies touched rocks or trees or beasts, strange creatures came to be.
The Fae, children of the Dreaming, moved throughout this world and across the borders unhindered, mingling with and teaching the short-lived humans to dream: the ability to shape new things from their hopes and visions in slumber. This ability helped keep the connections between realms of Arcadia, the Dreaming, and the mortal world strong. Plus teaching the humans to dream ensured the lives of the Fae whose lifeblood was dreams and the imagination that brought them about.
The Fae were able to show themselves to the mortals from time to time in many guises because their forms weren't fixed yet and fluid as dreams. In some lands they came as gods to the Sons of Adam and Daughters of Eve and their ability to enchant and beguile made them loved and feared. In Ireland they called themselves the Tuatha De Danaan and inspired legends that remain to this day.
Unfortunately many fae saw mortals as toys; conduits for dreams and nightmares. Mortal minds had no protection from their fickle ways and as they learned to dream they learned to fear those dreams and that fear would become the undoing of the children of the dream. As this Golden age moved into the Silver, Bronze, and Iron ages, humans learned to protect themselves and these acts of self-preservation began the slow separation of the Dreaming from the mortal world: the Sundering.
The Commoner Take
How did the fae come to be? You want to go that far back? I’m not a theologian, I’m an historian. You really want it? Ok.
I. Don’t. Know.
How’s that for an answer? What would you rather I say? You’ll get a different answer from every closet philosopher out there. The fae are made from the dreams of mortals. We’re the children of the Tuatha de Danann. Dana herself created us. They’re probably all true in their own way. The Mythic Age was just that… mythic. A story changes with the telling and so does our past. The past is reflected in the Now, and time is fluid. Cave paintings were magical. They fixed an event in time. Before that, history had nothing to bind it. It was based on what the storyteller believed, or rather, what they chose to say. That’s magic, too.
Next came clay tablets, stone, and paper. Writing pinned history like a butterfly to an entomologist’s board. Things stayed. What grandfather knew, you knew, and so did your neighbor. Not everyone in Babylon was literate, but someone was. That’s an evil of writing: It begat the bureaucrat, the scourge of the world and the right hand of Banality.
Mythic philosophy is a tale told by a besotted satyr, full of drivel and musings, signifying a waste of time. Let’s move on.
- The era that changelings refer to as the Mythic Age must not to be confused with the medieval Mythic Age of Mage: The Ascension, which is analogous to Mythic Europe, the setting of Ars Magica.