The age of druids in Shannara novels


traveller space dreamer
Oct 29, 2004
Somewhere in the Quad
I really enjoyed reading all Shannara novels, but there is something that bothers me regarding the age of the druids. Bremen and Cogline lived for thousands of years, Allanon for several hundreds, but all the others not so much. Is this because their role is less important or have not enough faith and magic ?

What do you think ?
Walker was 300 odd when he died. he was the last of the solitary druids, able to go into druids sleep when needed without others to worry about. later druids were parts of an order, and so didnt use druid sleep as much. Even the ard rhys, who are described as using druid sleep, would only spend years asleep, not decades. hence the shorter life spans.
There is supposed to be a cost in using the druid sleep. Allanon used it so that he would be there when he was needed as there were no other druids and he struggled to find a successor. With a whole order of druids around, the necessity that led Allanon to use the druid sleep was no longer an issue.
Agree with Glaysher. All magic comes with a price, and the use of the Druid Sleep has one of the heftier price tags. Bremen and Allanon used the sleep because they knew Brona would return, and there must be someone there to face him. Cogline used the Sleep for similar reasons regarding the Shadowen (and I believe there was a line in there somewhere about Allanon not being finished with him) and to help Walker Boh return the Druids to the Four Lands.

Then Walker used the Sleep because he was the last of the Druids, and had to prolong his life until an apprentice/replacement could be found, and his charge could be fulfilled.

Once Grianne Ohmsford re-established the Order, there was little use for the Sleep, and so its use eventually diminished as it was no longer the necessity it had been in the days of Bremen and then Allanon. So naturally, Druids began living normal (or closer to normal) lifespans as they were no longer using the Sleep to prolong their lives.
Grianne used the Druid Sleep, too. It's true that was for shorter periods. And her time was not less dangerous that in the time of Bremen or Cogline.
I didn't mean to imply her time was less dangerous. I only meant there was no "big bad" looming over the horizon which might take hundreds of years to show its face, and that she had to be sure she was around for.

Although to be fair, the evil was already within the order with the group conspiring to banish her to The Forbidding.
I wonder if this has anything to do with Terry Books's bad habit to kill the main characters and move forward with the actions after several generations.

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