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BAHAMUT (D&D)


Otherwise Known As:
Paladine (Dragonlance Book Series)
Titles:
The Platinum Dragon, King of Good Dragons, Lord of the Northwind
Realms:
Variable
Featured in: Dungeons & Dragons, Forgotten Realms, & Dragonlance
Voiced By: Non-Applicable

The second Bahamut, though technically the first to bear the name with a draconic form, is more commonly known as the King of Good Dragons insomuch that it is he that rules over the metallic dragons of the popular roleplaying series, Dungeons & Dragons. Though the legends are variable depending on the source material, as Bahamut’s story has grown and changed with every new edition, it cannot be argued that though he and his twin were born of the dragon all-father Io, it was he who was responsible for the creation of the metallic dragons. Whether this was in response to his wicked sister’s creation of the evil chromatics, I cannot say.

Of the pantheon of gods for D&D, Bahamut is revered predominately by gold, silver, and brass dragons and while they have no love for him, the chromatics respect Bahamut for his strength and prowess and think twice before doing anything that might earn his attention, or worse his wrath. For while Bahamut is most certainly a lawfully good deity, he disapproves evil of any sort and accepts no excuses for them. Still, he is quite compassionate to the weak and the downtrodden with a literal boundless empathy. His central dogma is the promotion of good but to let people fight their own battles when they can and will rarely get involved beyond providing information, safe refuge, and healing to those that are in need of it.

Being a god, particularly a draconic one, Bahamut is not strictly bound to any one form but he is most famous for two in particular. The first is the one most easily recognized by dragons and other races and that’s his natural form of a platinum scaled dragon with the icy breath of the North Wind or even one of absolute disintegration. His second form is that of an old man accompanied commonly by seven gold canaries. It is in this guise where Bahamut often helps those in need and those so-called birds? His seven vassals of whom are all golden dragons of particular renown themselves. These seven are not gods like Bahamut, but are great golden wyrms whose deeds/accomplishments have not only earned Bahamut’s respect but also his employ.

What makes Bahamut a particularly interesting god, at least in my opinion mind you, is that his antithesis is his own flesh-and-blood twin sister Tiamat. Named after an actual draconic Babylonian goddess, Tiamat was born the same time as Bahamut in the hopes that the two could together create the dragon races and to compliment the other. Unfortunately, their differing personalities were too great and Tiamat ultimately crossed fully from wickedness to evil when she murdered their elder brother and tried to frame Bahamut for the crime.

Their father, Io, easily saw through the deception and had Tiamat banished to the Nine Hells, and was ordered to never be seen by him again. Unlike her brother who bares a rather normal, if not exotic, dragon form, Tiamat has five heads, one each for the five chromatic dragon races she created with the red head being the chief amongst them.

Bahamut and Tiamat are constantly at odds for each other, never truly winning over the other but constantly putting the other in check. The only problem is that these stand-offs might come quickly to gods and the like, such cannot be said of the mortal, or near immortal, races that inhabit the planes that they toy with. I shan’t get too much into it but lets just say that it was in no small thanks to Tiamat’s and Bahamut’s actions that the Dragonlance book series earned their named.

 

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