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D&D 5E Grand Master of Flowers: Speculation on James Wyatt's October Book

darjr

I crit!
Grand Master of Flowers was introduced in the Blackmoor supplement. Which had an a space man in it. And if you wan't to find them you just need to find a Grand Master of Spring.

If I were a monk knowing that the Grand Master of Flowers is Bahumut I'd feel a bit cheated.

I think I need that card.

Nice find, btw.
 

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Parmandur

Book-Friend
Grand Master of Flowers was introduced in the Blackmoor supplement. Which had an a space man in it. And if you wan't to find them you just need to find a Grand Master of Spring.

If I were a monk knowing that the Grand Master of Flowers is Bahumut I'd feel a bit cheated.

I think I need that card.

Nice find, btw.
What's the fun of research without sharing the results, you know?
 

Stormonu

Legend
I'm having a serious Mandela moment. I remember the wandering persona from the 1E MM, but I thought a remembered a picture of Bahumat somewhere in Dieties & Demigods/Legends & Lore with him as an old, bald and bearded chinese man with a crooked walking cane, dressed in traditional sapphron* shoalin monk robes, sitting on a rock and surrounded by the seven canaries. It's a very specific black-and-white image burned into my mind.

From the 1E MM:

The King of Good dragons, Bahamut the platinum dragon, dwells in a great fortified palace behind the east wind. (No one knows for certain if this place is on the elemental plane of air or some plane betwixt it and the Seven Heavens or Tri-Paradises, save Bahamut and his court.) About one-quarter of the time he roams the earth in the guise of human or nearly any other form he chooses, for Bahamut is able to shape change freely. He can travel astrally or ethereally.
...
There are seven huge ancient gold dragons of highest abilities and loyalty who serve as guards, companions, and advisors to Bahamut. He seldom (10%) is without them. (A sage tells of encountering Bahamut in the guise of an old hermit, with seven canaries singing sweetly as they flitted nearby. The sage relates that he would never have known that he was anything other than what he appeared to be except that a group of ogres and trolls happened by much to their sorrow . . .

From the 2E Draconomicon (specifically for FR)
According to legend, Bahamut spends fully half his time wandering the world of Toril, usually in the guise of a harmless old man.
On these trips, he is usually accompanied by seven gold great wyrms of maximum power and hit points, also disguised in some way.
(Nobody knows where these dragons come from. Some sages speculate that they are the spirits of dead Kings of Justice, returned to the
Prime Material plane by Bahamut to serve him.)
Myths claim that Bahamut dwells in a great fortified palace behind the east wind. Some sages interpret this as being somewhere on the elemental plane of Air, while others believe that the platinum dragon dwells somewhere on the Prime Material plane.

No mention of him being a monk in either, but I'd always thought of him as one.




*yeah, the picture was black and white, but the cut of the robes was easily identifiable as the traditional shoalin outfit.
 


Parmandur

Book-Friend
I'm having a serious Mandela moment. I remember the wandering persona from the 1E MM, but I thought a remembered a picture of Bahumat somewhere in Dieties & Demigods/Legends & Lore with him as an old, bald and bearded chinese man with a crooked walking cane, dressed in traditional sapphron* shoalin monk robes, sitting on a rock and surrounded by the seven canaries. It's a very specific black-and-white image burned into my mind.

From the 1E MM:



From the 2E Draconomicon (specifically for FR)


No mention of him being a monk in either, but I'd always thought of him as one.




*yeah, the picture was black and white, but the cut of the robes was easily identifiable as the traditional shoalin outfit.
Fascinating, I always had an image of Bahamut as an old innocuous seeming wizard, which I will blame on Fizban.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
I'm having a serious Mandela moment. I remember the wandering persona from the 1E MM, but I thought a remembered a picture of Bahumat somewhere in Dieties & Demigods/Legends & Lore with him as an old, bald and bearded chinese man with a crooked walking cane, dressed in traditional sapphron* shoalin monk robes, sitting on a rock and surrounded by the seven canaries. It's a very specific black-and-white image burned into my mind.

From the 1E MM:



From the 2E Draconomicon (specifically for FR)


No mention of him being a monk in either, but I'd always thought of him as one.




*yeah, the picture was black and white, but the cut of the robes was easily identifiable as the traditional shoalin outfit.
I'm looking for the image in question, does it seem like the mini in this Tweet is based off of what you are remembering?

 

Always glad to see my boy getting some love. Seems like way too much attention gets put on his sister. And I've always like the idea of monks that revere Bahamut, so this is that much better.

Looking forward to a hopeful appearance in the upcoming Dragon-y book!
 

It's certainly worth considering the history of the title in D&D. In 1st edition AD&D the Grand Master of Flowers was the title given to the highest level of monk achievable (level 15? my memory is hazy). And, in the tradition of martial arts, there can be only one.

Now, the link with Bahamut may come from Chinese culture, where dragons are a powerful force for good, and so are Shaolin monks. I believe WotC are employing cultural consultants these days.

I've been trying to track down the original origin of the "seven yellow canaries" story, but so far I've drawn a blank.

Also see: the Bioware CRPG Jade Empire.
 
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dave2008

Legend
Interesting... I didn't realize that Bahamut had a human alter ego in the Forgotten Realms as well. I remember the Bahamut equivalent in Dragonlance, Paladine, having a "bumbling idiot" sort of alter ego, Fizban the Fabulous, in the Dragonlance books.
AS noted by @Stormonu in their post here, at least as far back as the 1e MM Bahamut is noted as spending a lot of time in human form.
 

I do indeed like the fact that this card "turns" into his Bahamut form once you have the seven loyalty counters on him. The fact that both of his abilities add a counter instead of subtracting is really great and shows the end goal reaching with this card. even though yes, I know in MtG there are method/ways of being able to deal with a 7/7 indestructible card/anything. Plus its a nice reference to the seven canaries that accompany him on his disguised journeys. Even if, the card art itself doesn't show all seven canaries.

This card and Vecna were the two standout surprises for me in this set.

Actually, I really like how all the "Planeswalkers" in this set have a gimmick/trait that reflects an actual aspect of D&D, related to their character, as a useable mechanic for their card.
 
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Well, his wandering persona is mentioned in thenPHB, MM, and DMG, I believe.
I vaguely recall seeing something in the 5e books, but it must not have seemed that important. ;)

I've seen some mention of Bahamut taking on human form in the Forgotten Realms wiki, but I didn't recall a specific identity other than "old dude with seven canaries"... but to be fair I probably just didn't pay enough attention to that. :)

I only recall the Dragonlance one so vividly because I loved the original three Dragonlance books and had read them relatively early on in my D&D career. The earlier settings lore sunk in a lot more with me. I didn't actually even engage with Forgotten Realms stuff beyond what was covered in the SSI Gold Box games until much later on. I don't know why it just never caught on as much with me.
 

I was just doing a little reading and never realized that both D&D and the Final Fantasy video game series appropriated the name of Bahamut from Arabian mythology. Not the description, though, just the name, as it appears it is D&D that originates Bahamut as a dragon.
 


Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
I was just doing a little reading and never realized that both D&D and the Final Fantasy video game series appropriated the name of Bahamut from Arabian mythology. Not the description, though, just the name, as it appears it is D&D that originates Bahamut as a dragon.

Yeah, I believe Bahamut is a sea monster in Arabian mythology. I believe D&D is the first property to pick it up and use it as a Dragon God, and then Final Fantasy and other properties like Granblue picked it up from D&D that Bahamut is a Dragon God.
 

Magister Ludorum

Adventurer
"There are seven huge ancient gold dragons of highest abilities and loyalty who serve as guards, companions, and advisors to Bahamut. He seldom (10%) is without them. (A sage tells of encountering Bahamut in the guise of an old hermit, with seven canaries singing sweetly as they flitted nearby. The sage relates that he would never have known that he was anything other than what he appeared to be except that a group of ogres and trolls happened by much to their sorrow. . .)"

1e MM had him accompanied by sparrows.
 

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