Aryaman was a god who presided over marriages, which as Ceisiwr Serith points out, is how bonds between members of the tribe are cemented. The Kitchen Witch's Cottage. He is the very popular god of prosperity and good fortune. Associated with the element fire. He has horns and a canine head. D'Arbois hence regards him as a god of blight and death, like Balor.
He had an invincible sword that would cut his enemies in half. Go to Jesus. He is identified with representations of St. Its deep-rooted legends, imaginative fables and magical myths deserve exploration to provide valuable insight into the beliefs of pre-Christian Gaelic peoples, such as the tale of Dagda, one of the most important deities of the native Irish mythology. Signficantly, one of Quirinus' consorts was named Hora, meaning of course "hour". In Dorset there is a famous outline of an ithyphallic God of the Destroying Lance, Odin is a fire and dark element monster. But he is, of course, more than simply a warrior god and the illustration at the top of this post gives a better idea of the way he combines attributes as a deity of the arts and intellectual skills, music and poetry; an associate of ravens as well as the owner of the spear, a practitioner of magic and champion of the harvest.
There is much debate about his lefthandedness. He is a master of magic, a fearsome warrior and a skilled artisan. Most prominent of these is a medallion-like depiction of a bull hunt. Being the earth god meant that he controlled the orderly passage of seasons. The Dagda was the leader of the Tuatha de Danaan, and a god of fertility and knowledge. Known also as the goddess of the Danu tribe, they brought with them four magical treasures that are mentioned in early Irish literature.
Learn about the Dagda, and how he ended up making himself lose his own power. She appeared to him as a hag, just as she did Dagda. It makes more sense to regard them as husband and wife. Perhaps, his most important role, and his most spiritual role is one similar to Hermes and Hercules in Greek mythology. The content of a book, movie, or song is what it's about: the topic. He was very powerful; he could control the weather and assure a great harvest. Affected by enemy element and defense.
Agni Hindu fire god. Lir was known as the God of the Sea and is said to be the father of the children in the Irish legend of the 'Children of Lir'. After many months of battle and many deaths, Queen Medb and King Aillil were finally equal in wealth, but not in power. The wolf bit off his right hand. To me, "god" is the mechanism by which all other things can be created and are interlinked. Finn decided to eat the Salmon to gain the knowledge.
Like Lugh, he is powerful and omnicompetent. He was a key leader on occasion but after Nuada and the traitorous Bres, for example, and before his son Bodb Dearg. His name means "all" or "perfection" or "the complete one". The man had entrusted a silver brooch to the woman for safekeeping but then secretly threw the piece into the sea. Aryaman, along with Surya, god of the sun with whom he is sometimes identified , is the regulator of time. But more broadly, he was also a god of intoxication or drunkenness and also fertility. And this is why they selected Bricriu, for that Bricriu was no fairer to his friend than to his foe.
Another Gaulish god who may be related to the Dagda is Sucellus, the striker, depicted with a hammer and cup.
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The Dagda: The Irish father of the gods whose name translates as the good god. He was one of the most important gods of the Celtic legends. In the norse culture the right hand was given for a pledge, which could be why the right hand was placed in the wolf's mouth. He is a phallic deity, master of fertility and abundance. Here are some of these Irish gods explained. His own legends are lost. Eros-was the Greek God of love and fertility or sex as some would call it.
A fertility god associated with rain and thunder Not only god, but a powerful Shannon and the first man The male both human and Divine is equally as important as the females, for he was the hunter, had more physical strength, and he was the caregiver and keeper of animals, and over all others, he protected all the tribe from harm. Originally was monotheism but evolved into polytheism. He carried a large spear. This God had various precious possessions: A cauldron with unlimited food supply called Undry. Sutherland - AncientPages. The Dagda was a title; the name I usually associate with him is Echu Ollathair.
Freyia Völundarhúsins | LadyoftheLabyrinth´s Old Norse Mythology Website
The Dagda is portrayed as the father of the gods in this epic tale. His attributes are a sword, a bridle, a s Like tracking the mythology tag, but better — satan-conduit-le-bal: Svetovid sometimes. He came across three men who were arguing over their inheritence which included a club which could kill at one end and revive at the other.
The strain costs him his life. His magic cauldron restores life and supplies unlimited food, while his harp provides the music of sorrow, or joy and of dreaming and causes the changing seasons to continue through time. In some texts his father is Elatha, in others his mother is Ethniu. His answer was clear and it he was referring to a particular God, and he used modern astronomy as his evidence against that particular God hypothesis.
Morrigan: He had the ability to change from human to animal form. His name means "The Good God" Old Irish deagh dia; Modern Irish dea-Dia , not necessarily good in a moral sense, but good at everything, or all-powerful. If you want to sincerely understand the basic reasons, then this book will be incredibly useful in understanding the atheist mindset.
Here is a list of gods, all gods except one were made by men, who, steeped in ignorance, used superstition to deceive, mislead and keep the people in darkness, and thus have power and wealth for themselves. Datan is one of three minor Polish gods who guard the fields, along with Lawkapatim and Tawals. Resheph Warrior god. Dagda was commonly believed to be a crude and comical God. Though out history, mankind has worshipped the Gods. The Dagda modern spelling: Daghdha is an important god of Irish mythology. Ogma: Irish god of eloquence and learning, he is also a great warrior and wields a Fomorian sword.
Irish tales depict the Dagda as a figure of power, armed with a spear. At the Battle of Ventry he helped the Fianna hold back the Romans. He is associated with fertility, agriculture, manliness and strength, as well as magic, druidry and wisdom. He obtained it while searching for a cure for his son Cermait who had been killed by Lugh for sleeping with Lugh's wife. Dagda's Harp. Her symbol is the cornucopia, which suggests she could have originally been the fertility goddess.
The Dagda is a Celtic God. Animals and sometimes human sacrifices were offered to please the gods or to seek their assistance in battle or plea for a successful harvest. Ashtoreth Fire magic, Fertility Crom is a stern and unforgiving god that answers no prayers. In the sequel Bress becomes king and oppresses the Tuatha De Danann until the latter wins in a final battle. He is the God in his youth. He died of grief when a woman he loved converted to Christianity.
There was a war against the Fomorians, who Dagda was sent to spy on. Finn MacCool is a mythological warrior that appears in several Irish legends. Often interpreted as a god of Skill, Oaths, Law, and the Sun. He throws Gwern headlong into a fire, ruining the chances for peace. It is said that the club he wielded was so powerful that it could kill nine men with a single strike, or bring nine men back to life. Movers, Phonizier, p. He charged her with stealing it, knowing that he could take her as a sex-slave if he accused the woman with theft and a judge ruled in his favor. He said Obama is playing politics; Obama always plays politics.
Lugh: He is the god of sun and light; he is a natural leader and expert in battles. The name means the 'Good God', not good in a moral sense, but good at everything, or all-powerful. He always has a cask or drinking jar. His name means "the good god. I have quoted davidylan's post directly upon which I quoted thehomer's. Here we take a look at some of the top For example, Dagda, the god of life and death in Ireland—known as the good god—resembled Esus, the "master" god of Gaul. His brothers included Ogma and according to some sources Lir. For example, the Dagda in Celtic mythology was known as the father of the gods.
The old Irish tract called "The Choice of Names" tells us that he was a god of the earth; he had a cauldron called "The Undry", in which everyone found food in proportion to his merits, and from which The Dagda modern spelling: Daghdha, likely from Proto-Celtic: Dagodeiwos, "the good god" is an important god of Irish mythology. He was the leader of the Tuatha de Danaan, and a god of fertility and knowledge. Nuada Nudd or Ludd is the Celtic god of healing and much more. Seb God of the Earth, personifying the earth and fertility, imprisoning the souls of the wicked so that they cannot ascend to Heaven She is ushually depicted sitting side-sattle or lying on a horse.
The Dagda, father of the gods. The Law is both protection, and Justice but also something to be feared. The meaning of the name "Bogovo Gumno" means God's Threshing floor. The Brehon can be both a sign of great good, but also a warning that payment is due, or payback imminent for any one of our actions. It turned out that Nuada was a god of the Air, subordinate only to the Dagda, who seemed to be the most powerful god of them all.
We were present as guest presenters doing an informational workshop and ritual focused on the Dagda, a Gaelic god of wisdom, fertility and strength. He was the brother or father of Oghma, who is probably related to the Gaulish god Ogmios; Ogmios, depicted as an old man with a club, is one of the closest Gaulish parallels to the Dagda. He was said to have possessed two pigs — one always roasting, and the other always growing. To this we shall return.
When El is used as the name of a god, he is the main god, the god of power. He says that Mercury was the most honoured of all the gods and many images of him were to be found. He came with the rest to witness the battle of the bulls. He embodies the Law; he is above the king and more powerful than any other authority. Yahweh and El were originally conceived as different gods.
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Banka Mundi — Goddess of the hunt and fertility. Believe that people must reproduce God's benevolence in their own society in order to be in touch with the true nature of things. Zeus and the other Olympians: Oh no! Posiedon: Ok well maybe we should visit them and show them some parental affection, even tell them some nice things and remind them we remember they exist The Dagda was an important god in Irish mythology, where as usual the gods are euhemerized as the heroic Tuatha de Danaans.
Also a God of death; the father of Brighid. Bress won freedom from the gods thanks to his services in instructing the people of Ireland in the art of agriculture. He shared many characteristics with Indo-European chief gods such such as the tale of Dagda, one of the most important deities of the native Irish mythology. Dagda His name means the Good God. One of the nymphs he pursued, Syrinx, changed herself into a reed to escape him.
To browse Academia. Godly parents. There were some whose names I have now forgot, but they then lived at a gentleman's house, named Comb Farm, near the place before specified. Both the man, his wife, and divers of the neighbours assured me they had at many times seen this fair-keeping in the summer-time, as they came from Tanton market, but that they durst not adventure in amongst them, for that every one that had done so had received great damage by it.
Chestonford is now called Churchinford. Elbolton Hill Sacred Hill. Finds are in the Craven museum in Skipton. There are so many caves here with many weird names. It is rather a strange landscape with these entrances to worlds below - it is any wonder it is famed as the haunt of fairies? A tale related in the Readers Digest 'Folklore Myths and Legends of Britain' mentions them - and they weren't very nice ones either.
A man from Burnsall was walking home in the moonlight, when he was surprised to come across a crowd of them dancing. They hadn't seen him so for a while he tried to keep quiet, watching their antics. However, quite well-meaningly I feel he eventually piped up: "Na' then, Ah'll sing a song if tha loikes. His bruises lasted for ages. I've found the story in Yorkshire Legends and Traditions which says: [The man from near Burnsall] was passing Elbothon Hill - the fairies' haunt - when he saw a large number of them dancing in the moonlight. He knew their wishes always to be left uninterrupted; but he so far forgot himself as to off to join in their revellings by singing a song.
He was at once attacked by the whole band, and so punished by pinches and kicks, that he was glad to get away as quickly as possible. He, however, succeeded, as he fled, in taking one of them prisoner - whether a lady or a gentleman the record sayeth not - and he secured, as he thought, him or her, in the pocket of his coat. Rejoicing in the capture, he hastened home, where he delighted his children, by telling of the beautiful living doll he had secured for them. But, alas! Dane's Dyke. Can 'gell' mean girl? Or is the fact it is an old word for 'leech' more significant?
Or perhaps it's just like the word 'gill' for a narrow stream. Brimham Rocks Rocky Outcrop. Read at the Society of Antiquaries, May 25th I think [this] may be called an oracular stone, though it goes by the name of the Great Cannon. It rests upon a bed of rock, where a road plainly appears to have been made leading to the hole a , which at the entrance is three feet wide, six feet deep, and about three feet six inches high. Within this aperture on the right hand is a round hole, marked b , two feet diameter, perforated quite through the rock, sixteen feet, and running from south to north.
In the above mentioned aperture, a man might lie concealed, and predict future events to those that come to consult the oracle, and is heard distinctly on the north side of the rock, where the hole is not visible. This might make the credulous Britons think the predictions proceeded solely from the rock deity. The voice on the outside is as distinctly conveyed to the person in the aperture, as was several times tried. Twmbarlwm Hillfort. And people that had been very naughty, they threw down into the valley below: Dyffryn Y Gladdfa.
Supposedly Twmbarlwm means 'Hill of the Judge' and Dyffryn y Gladdfa means 'Valley of the graves' - but perhaps a Welsh speaker can confirm or deny this. Elsewhere I've read that the earlier Twyn Barlwm just means 'bare-topped hill'. Not quite so romantic. The story is probably just a Victorian fantasy as it's about druids, based on a convenient mistranslation.
I can't see the valley on the map anyway - but do you know this story and where it's set?
BLADE HONER TRAILER
The explanation related in 'Reader's Digest "Folklore Myths and Legends of Britain"' has the effect of craftily Christianising the monolith's arrival. Legend has it that the stone simply fell from the sky "killing certain desecrators of the churchyard". Act of God rather than the Devil. Makes a change. There are within one mile of this place a great number of Tumuli, amounting to about five hundred, which from time immemorial have been called " Danes Graves.
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Each tumulus is three or four feet high, and from twenty to thirty feet in circumference at the base. Many of these ancient depositaries of the dead have been recently opened, and found to contain each a human skeleton, which from the dry calcareous nature of the soil has been kept in excellent preservation upwards of a thousand years. Devil's Stone Natural Rock Feature. The Reader's Digest book 'Folklore, Myths and Legends of Britain' mentions that the stone was said to have been quarried on the other side of the River Torridge at Henscott, apparently intended as a foundation stone for a church there.
They were overall decadent but managed to hide it under a veneer of sophistication. Drow were arrogant, ambitious, sadistic, treacherous, and hedonistic. From birth, the drow were taught they were superior to other races, and that they should crush those beneath them. Unlike inherently evil creatures like orcs,  the evil of the drow wasn't of inherent nature:   They enforced the Way of Lolth,  leading to a race of emotionally stunted people,  with a tenuous grasp on sanity and scarred mentalities, among which relatively undamaged minds were considered abnormal.
Most drow's personal goal was about increasing their station in life,  as they desired the power on others that a higher station would provide. For example, while they liked to assassinate their competiton, doing so and being exposed would bring punishment for being too overt about it, as would open murder.
Rising through the ranks too quickly was dangerous for any drow. The usual reaction was the formation of temporary alliances among those who were wronged by the quickly ascending drow to take the latter down. Such alliances were often successful. Drow were a violent race, and violence was their favorite, if not instinctive, method for conflict resolution. The drow managed to fight this urge when waiting for a more propitious time to strike.
Drow believed themselves to be the apex creature. They were arrogant to the point of being incapable of viewing other creatures as their equal,  including their own kind. Every single drow believed themsleves to be the best example of their superior species. As a general rule, drow living within a Lolthite society couldn't afford to show emotions like compassion or love, for they were easy to exploit. Cruelty was also seen as a mean of self-validation. The drow believed that any person that could not defend themselves deserved to be inflicted cruelty, and by delivering cruelty on a weaker creature the drow could prove their superiority.
The constant strife of their society led the drow to be paranoid and fear everyone and everything. They feared the potential loss of their station, the loss of Lolth 's favor, the loss loyalty or outright rebellion of their underlings, and the potential of punishment from their superiors. Drow were hedonists. They loved and surrounded themselves with what they considered beautiful, generally without paying attention to the cost.
They generally believed to be entitled to do whatever they wanted, whenever they wanted to do it. Drow were incapable of trusting other creatures, no matter their race. While the drow understood the value of forging bonds,  they did not see a value in the virtue of honesty. Since any alliance or cordial relationship could end in treachery, the drow went into engagements of this sort expecting the worst.
Alliances were always under scrutiny for signs of treachery and often ended violently. Even in moments of safety or relaxation, the drow were always alert and constantly expecting attacks of any kind. Therefore, they were rarely surprised when those actually happened, depriving the attacker of the advantage of surprise. Drow were vengeful people by necessity. Not answering to slights with punishment was easily perceived as weakness by other drow, and was essentially the same as inviting exploitation, abuse, or even death.
However, most of them weren't actually of good alignment , but merely chaotic neutral or lawful neutral. Within the Lolthite society, even actually good drow generally had problems to form a sense of moral for themselves. They generally acted in the same way as evil drow due to social pressure and risks. As mentioned above, being soft in any way was lethal in drow society and therefore these people often died. It was believed that the "good drow" collectively worshipped Eilistraee ,  goddess of freedom,  but the actual breakdown was that the good-aligned drow did indeed worship the kind goddess, while the morally neutral drow's worship was split among Ghaunadaur , Lolth , Selvetarm , and Vhaeraun.
Only truly exceptional good drow like Drizzt Do'Urden were capable of freeing themselves from Lolth's society. Those who managed to leave Lolthite settlements would often die to the dangerous wilderness of the Underdark. Furthermore, even those who escaped the cruelties of the Underdark found it more difficult to form long-term friendships than most races did  and had to constantly be on the lookout for pursuers who could kill them. Drow were more agile and alluring than most humanoid races. Like all elves, drow required no sleep. They instead entered a meditative trance while retaining full awareness of their surroundings.
This state was half-again as efficient as the way most races gained rest. The fact that drow didn't relive memories of past lives during their trances was viewed as an indication that, unlike the elves, their souls didn't reincarnate. Drow had tremendous resistance to magic. It increased again when they reached adulthood, and could be trained even further.
The fluctuations of resistance against magic in drow infants was a lethal danger, leading to the development of the potion of magic resistance to stabilize it. Even when a drow's magic resistance was overcome, they could handle magical attacks quite well and had a better chance than other races at resisting them,  especially spells that attempted to bend their will. Lolthtouched powers, the result of Lolth 's blessing, were the most distinctive feature of the drow. The use of such abilities was tiring for the drow.
They seemed to be powered by the same source, and only more experienced and well-trained drow could cast both abilities separately.
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Through training, drow could manifest the so-called webs of darkness that both slowed and impeded a foe, while also limiting their vision. Those who became curseborn could unlock even more power, including improvements of the aforementioned cloud of darkness and darkfire. Other ways to improve these abilities included training to cast the cloud of darkness faster in response to harm, or to turn the darkfire into a flickering protective shroud that made the beneficiary harder to hit. More mundane methods included slipping in the cover of darkness,  or learning to hit the target of darkfire not just more accurately but also harder, like the drow wanderers did.
Lolth's touch gave her a hold over the entire drow race, and overcoming it was only possible by becoming a redeemed drow who also managed to judged worthy by Corellon. Base powers were abilities that the drow could cast without any schooling but simple practice. They varied slightly from person to person due to different reasons: genetics, personal talent, divine favor, etc.. Drow magical abilities  were somehow tied to the faerzress ,  the radiation of the Underdark , and its intensity in the birthplace of a drow could influence their base powers.
These abilities could temporarily vary in the same person depending on the personal mental and physical health situation, aging effects, degree of training, and so on. A dying drow could double the effectiveness of the own innate powers by super-charging them with her or his own life force. The drow could use their base powers once every day and, once employed, they could end the spell, move it around at their whim, or downsize it.
Spells like dispel magic could end a base power's effect. Normally, a drow could not continue using these abilities when they started using another one, or started to cast a spell. Strong light like sunlight hampered the drow's concentration, rendering them unable to use their innate abilities, with few exceptions, namely the nobles. Upon reaching a sufficient degree of expertise, the drow gained their so called mature powers: the ability to innately cast the detect magic , know alignment , and levitate spells. Particularly intelligent and powerful drow could maintain two inborn abilities, or one inborn ability and one normal spell , simultaneously.
For example, they could levitate while casting darkness. Casting mature powers was impossible in the presence of intense light, like for base powers. Members of the clergy of a drow deity gained powers  through divine favor. These abilities always included the clairvoyance , detect lie , dispel magic , and suggestion spells. Depending on divine favor, a cleric could gain additional powers, like the ability to cast detect undead , ESP —albeit only against other drow within 20 ft. Some drow were born with more powers than usual, like the ability to divine a person's mental inclination, as the detect good spell, to detect magic, as detect magic , and to levitate.
These abilities seemed to be a dominant trait. Nobles could use their base and mature powers up to once per decade of their lives per day, instead of merely once per day. Unlike commoners, nobles could attempt to cast their inborn abilities in the presence of light, but they could only maintain one of their spells at a time in presence of light, even when they could normally do otherwise.
Drow trained in magic often became good clerics and wizards. Clerical magic was the domain of drow women. Drow clerics were special among their elven peers. Elven clerics' bodies could only handle a certain amount of magical energy, which limited their growth.
The limits of a drow cleric was determined by the favor of the god they served. They could theoretically grow infinitely strong. In practice, however, there was a certain limit at which point the deity either killed or elevated the drow to demigod status. Drow owned no inherent psionic abilities but psionic schools, especially for the arts of psions and psychic warriors , existed in some cities.
Every drow with access to civilization received education in arcane magic, but not every drow was a wizard—far from it. This training had the purpose of scouting talent for magic in young drow, and of teaching all drow to maintain their innate abilities. Wizards were the most dangerous among their people, and the most likely to be found alone in the Underdark.
Drow who were somehow confined in their cities had a harder time to become exceedingly strong due to lack of training opportunities. Drow wizards with the desire for more magic ventured out as adventurers or hired explorers. Due to the inferior compatibility with arcane magic in drow women, the Art was the province of men. They were under general suspicion of being dissatisfied with drow society and having a desire to change it. Thus, they were abducted to undergo the Test once they reached a certain degree of power.
Wizards often provided the means of protection and disguise for those who dealt with the denizens of the surface. Among drow wizards, azmyth were the most prized familiars, but watchspiders and hunting spiders were held in high regard too. Drow also liked to choose fiendish, more precisely abyssal , familiars. Nevertheless, it was common for drow wizards to have a snake , spitting crawler , pedipalp , solifugid , or other spiders  —like the hairy spider —as a familiar. Night hunters were rarely kept as familiars  or aggressive pets.
Zedarr , a drow blackguard of Kiaransalee. Male drow were competent fighters. The drow had a fascination with stealth and subtlety, and specific training was available for their rogues. Due to the drow's fascination with stealth, in famous assassin schools that doubled as assassins' guilds existed. Another route for rogues was to devote themselves to Lolth and become divine seekers. Drow were frail like any other elf. They had a tendency to ambush their enemies with ranged weaponry, and retreated when melee combat was the sole other option.
Drizzt Do'Urden ; a master of the draa velve style. The drow society nominally had two purposes, called "the First and Second Part of the Destiny of the People". The former was about forcing all other races of the Underdark into subservience, while the latter was about driving the entire elven population into extinction. Lolth claimed that, in order to achieve such goals, the drow needed to be forced into perpetual infighting and violent competition, so that the constant training would make them stronger and smarter.
However, the extreme, self-destructive degree to which this was taken prevented the drow from achieving either of their purposes, barring possibilities for significant growth. On a personal level, each drow tried to gain and maintain the favor of Lolth, as well as to amass material goods, like wealth and slaves, and to gain status inside their society, in which the concept of inherent value of life did not exist. Drow of higher standing supported endeavors to boost their own prestige by increasing their own people's power and influence.
Drow of lower station supported plans that dragged everybody down, for example by causing strife and violence within their communities. Drow lived in city-states in the Underdark , built in places that had to meet sevaral criteria. Drow cities could have trade agreements between each other, but were mostly at war. While called "city-states", they didn't have the organization of an actual state: they were mostly clusters of drow, with the most powerful family groups taking the best lands and resources for themselves,  and forming the aristocratic class.
The noble Houses were located in the close proximity to each other, and a public temple to Lolth was often built within the strongest family's territory. A good indicator of the residents' power was the grandeur of the house; the bigger the more powerful. Drow cities usually included farmlands, where slaves worked to produce and harvest meat and crops. When faced with overpopulation, drow ate their elders to combat the problem. Lighting within a drow city was created both through magic and mundane means, with the former being far more common. The gates of a city, as well as its important buildings, were usually protected by jade spider guardians.
The faerzress radiation near most drow cities provided protection from magical spying via divination , and also made it difficult, or even dangerous, to teleport within the area.follow url
The radiation had the unique capability to cause mutations in creatures. For example, a flying roper could be born in a faerzress -rich environment. If the product of such mutations was powerful, drow tried to avoid fighting it and tried to contain it in a certain area so that would-be-intruders had to face it instead. If the creature had a spider-like appearance, the drow's reaction was to praise it as the work of Lolth and sometimes fed it with their captives, or with intruders whom they lured into the monster's lair.
The drow were mostly met in the Upperdark , but the majority of their cities were found in the Middledark as a protection against aggressions from the surface. In fact, traveling all the distance down to the Middledark with an army from the surface wasn't a feasible undertaking. There were two power groups within a drow city; the noble houses and the merchant clans. See also: List of drow houses. Drow were ruled by their aristocracy, made up by the families that had the strength to violently occupy the best lands. Such Houses were founded by powerful drow individuals with special powers, who then passed their traits to their offspring see under Noble Powers.
Nobles also further augmented their abilities with magic items. Noble Houses constantly fought each other  but were also characterized by internal strife,  as it was actually expected in a society that followed the Way of Lolth. Noble drow stayed with their family as children as a protection from outside violence, and as adults because Houses proved to be good tools for societal advancement. Noble drow families banded together for mutual protection and not out of affection. Below her, in descending order of influence, were the female members—also priestesses, ranked according to age—  the male officers weapon master, House wizard, and patron—the matron's consort , and the other male members of the House war-leaders, who answered to the weapon master, and House mages, subservient to the House wizard , who were also ranked according to age.
None of the ranks held by male drow or non-blood-related members had any job security. All it took was the matron's whim for their position to be changed. Females had absolute power within their household, and owned all the governmental and militaristic power within the city. Males never held any authority unless they managed to become an officer. In most cases a matron only lost her position if murdered by her eldest daughter. This usually marked a new direction for the House, sometimes even its destruction, because the murder of a matron was seen as a sign of disfavor from Lolth.
While the nobles took the best lands and resources for themselves, the rest of the population was forced to care for themselves. Priestesses were bad rulers who tossed their cities into a haphazard organization. The success of the merchant clans was important for the survival of the drow race. The organization of a merchant clan varied, but some general statements could be made. They were run by a council of male wizards, called "inner ring". Male drow had no inhibition when it came to interaction with other races, including surface-dwellers, because they knew that there was no chance of advancement within their society for them.
In fact, many of the "second ring", as the managers of a merchant clans were called, were non-drow. The lowest ranking members, almost exclusively non-drow, called "assets", made up the labor and military force of the organization. Outside the environment of the drow cities, merchant clans and noble Houses openly fought each other.
Within the drow society, merchants with a particularly rich experience and worldly mindset were the only individuals capable of forming genuine friendships with the so-called lesser races, like mind flayers or duergars. Within the Lolthite drow society, "might makes right" was the only "law". In practice, however, something akin to an actual body of laws existed within the drow society, and the priestesses fulfilled the judicial functions.
Concepts such as the presumption of innocence didn't exist, and the only possibility to lessen a punishment was for the presumed criminal to have connections that the punishing priestesses considered a threat. The Way of Lolth was the basis for the drow laws.