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Linnëa was an elven maiden that lived during the time before elves were immortal. She currently lives as the Menoa Tree.
Linnëa was, according to elven lore, a middle-aged maiden who was an expert at singing to plants in the ancient language. She had grown old without the comfort of a mate or children and she was content, preferring to occupy herself with her art rather than seek the company of others. Until one day when a young man came to her and won her heart with words of love. With the belief that this was truth, Linnëa abandoned her art and devoted herself entirely to this young man and for a time they were happy.
However, the young man began to long for someone closer to his own age and found another, younger, elven woman. He won her heart. But when Linnëa learned of his treachery, she went mad with grief and anger, as well as stabbed both the young man and woman to death in her fury.
With the knowledge of the evil she had committed, Linnëa lost all joy in life. So she went in misery to the oldest tree in Du Weldenvarden and pressed her body against it. She then started to sing in the ancient language, expressing her sorrow and abandoning all her allegiance to her race because of her shame.
For three days and nights Linnëa sang, until she and the tree were indistinguishable. From that day forth, it was known as the Menoa Tree. And through all the millennia since has she kept watch over all the forest…
Name origin Edit
Linnea \l(in)-nea\ is pronounced le-NEE-ah, le-NAY.
It is of Scandinavian origin and its meaning is "Tilia, lime or linden tree".
- In German folklore, the "Tilia or Linden Tree" is also known as the "tree of lovers."
The concept of a human being turned into a tree echoes the story of Merlin in Sir Thomas Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur, a concept also used as the basis for the Ellcrys in The Elfstones of Shannara by Terry Brooks. There are also far earlier mythological stories including the concept, for example every Dryad, and in Greek myth Daphne begged her father Landon and Gaia for help to escape Apollo and was turned into a tree so he could not ravage her.