In the beginning, there was the glorious and embarassing original setting of Warhammer Fantasy. It was glorious because it was simply one of the most imaginative and cool settings ever. It was embarassing, because it blatantly stole elements from Tolkien and Moorcock, mixed them with pop culture and sprinkled a good bit of stereotyping on top.
There were Slann, of course. There were Amazons. There were Pygmies. And there were Sea Elves. All things that were happily retconned in the 90s because the creative management at GW thought they veered too much on the embarassing side of the spectrum, no matter how glorious they were.
This is what WFRP 1E had to say about Sea Elves:
The Elves living around the coasts of the Elven Kingdoms have a tradition of seamanship and fighting, and lack the normal Elven disdain of physical labour. Because of this, the High Elves look down on them, thinking them rough and uncouth. They are brave warriors and tireless guardians of the seaways, and it is thanks to them that the sea routes between the Old World and Lustria remain open. Sea Elves are quite venturesome, and can often be found as merchants and traders in old World ports. Most of them speak Old Worlder as well as Elvish, and many have a smattering of the Norse language too. The Elven trading posts of the Old World are run almost exclusively by Sea Elves.
In later years, Sea Elves were simply absorbed into the High Elves or, as the Lore, named them, the Asur. A memory of their existence could be traced in the division of High Elves between those belonging to the introspective inner realms of Ulthuan, and those hailing from the hardy and seafaring outer realms.
But in their glory days, the Sea Elves were the Warhammer Sindar, the Falathrim of the Old World, the link between the lands of Men and Ulthuan, Lustria and the rest of the world. They were cosmopolitan, adventurous and interested in trading. Basicly the opposite of the isolationist High Elves, the secretive Wood Elves and the decadent Dark Elves.
No wonder that my first WFRP PC was a Sea Elf then. Gelmir, he was named, son of Handir, born in the miserable harbour of Grilm, on the coasts of the Wasteland, not far from Marienburg. He was an orphan, a bodyguard, quite ugly by elven standards (which still made him the most handsome of the party) and blessed with the boon of having a morality closer to Man than Elf. In other words, he was elvish, good and a lover of beauty and all, but at times a huge son of a b$%£h.
The miniature for this PC is a 1987 Citadel cast for the Elf Command Group (#10, Musician), scuplted by Jes Goodwin. It is a nice figure, with good proportions and very nice hair. It's perfect for an adventurer, with its causal garments and big belt with satchels. I choose it for the harp, which was a key element of Gelmir the Sea Elf - he had learned a melody from some Old Slann ghosts, by virtue of which he could widen or narrow warp portals, and this skill was instrumental more than once in limiting the power of Chaos champions and sorcerers.
Any opinion or memories with Sea Elves? Let me know in the comments!