Iolo Fitzowen, a bowmaker and wandering minstrel of great repute, is known to all Britannia. Iolo was brought to our fair land by Lord British and the Orb of the Moons, as was his wife, Gwenno.
As long as he has been in our land, first Sosaria, and now Britannia, Iolo has sought to bring music to its peoples. During the Three Ages of Darkness, he travelled to many cities, bringing his tales in the form of songs. It was during this time that he met Shamino, who would become one of his closest friends, and most trusted companions. As they both moved from place to place, they often accompianied one another, and their friendship grew.
After the fall of Exodus, when Britannia was founded, Iolo settled in Britain, the City of Compassion. There he helped the children spread Compassion to all through their songs, until the Hero arrived on his quest for Avatarhood, and asked Iolo to join him. Iolo agreed, and followed the Hero through moutains high and dungeons deep, until at last his quest was attained.
When the Avatar had left the world and the Codex raised from the Abyss, Iolo made his new home in the Forest of Yew, southeast of Empath Abbey, where dwelt also the talking horse Smith. He also created Iolo's Bows in Britain, in which he was aided by his wife Gwenno, who also formerly served as a jester in the courts of Lord British. When Blacktorne assumed the throne when Lord British was lost, and the Shadowlords roamed the lands, Iolo was made a wanted man, and here he stayed, only venturing out when he and the other Companions summoned the Avatar. And it was here that the Avatar came, carrying Shamino, who had been struck down by the Shadowlords. At this time Iolo once again joined the Avatar in his quest, this time to save Lord British and Britannia. At last they succeeded, and the Avatar returned to his world, and Iolo to his home in the Forest of Yew.
Until the Avatar's next visit, Iolo continued to work at his shop in Britain, creating the finest bows and crossbows in the land. But when the Gargoyles summoned the Avatar to their land in an attempt to kill him, Iolo, along with Shamino and Dupre, rescued the Avatar, a bolt from Iolo's crossbow killing the Gargoyle priest instants before he would have plunged the sacrificial dagger into the Avatar's heart. Iolo accompianied the Avatar on this quest, and helped him to save Britannia from peril once again.
During the Avatar's two century absensce, Iolo continued to live in his home in the ever shrinking Yew, though he took long trips to many cities, including Trinsic. Also during this time Iolo opened a new Iolo's branch, called Iolo's South, on the Isle of Deeds, near Serpent's Hold. His business in Britain flourished as well, and his newest invention, the triple-crossbow, sold well. During his last visit to Trinsic, Iolo's wife Gwenno journeyed to Buccaneer's Den, where she was searching for, and indeed found, information concerning the legendary Serpent Isle. Upon his return to his home in Yew, Iolo found a note telling where she had gone.
While visiting in Trinsic, the Avatar mysteriously appeared through a red moongate, which was later found to be the Time Lord's doing. Iolo and the Avatar set off to investigate a gruesome murder of the blacksmith Christopher and a wingless gargoyle. This lead them, along with the other Companions, to discover the true nature of the Fellowship, and the Guardian's plot to enter Brittania through the Black Gate. Iolo aided the Avatar in thwarting the Guardian's evil plans, and Brittania was safe once again.
When the Guardian trapped the entire castle within the huge Blackrock Gem, Iolo was trapped as well, along with the Avatar and many others. He was quick to give his friend advice and training as the Avatar braved the many perils before him, journeying to other worlds through the gem, in hope that he could somehow break the Guardian's power over the Gem, which at last he did.
The last adventure of the intrepid bard was to the Serpent Isle, in a search to find his wife, Gwenno, and Batlin, who had escaped before the destruction of the Black Gate eighteen months earlier. While in Fawn, city of Beauty, Iolo was given the white diamond necklace by Lady Yelinda, ruler of Fawn, to give to Gwenno when she was found. It was during this time that he was possessed by the Bane of Chaos known as Madness, and destroyed the City of Fawn. The Avatar eventually exorcised the Bane from his friend's body, freeing him. Iolo was finally reunited with his beloved Gwenno on Monk Isle, after he was freed from the Bane. Iolo followed the Avatar to Sunset Isle and the Grand Shrine of Balance, until the Avatar entered the void and was taken away by the Guardian.
While the Avatar was in Pagan, Iolo enjoyed a peaceful retirement with Gwenno. When the columns rose from the ground, however, he felt it necessary to investigate the odd happenings in Despise. As he travelled deeper into the dungeon, his mind was corrupted by the Guardian. Iolo eventually became a servant of the Guardian, guarding the Glyph of Hatred under the name Ooli. When the Avatar found him, he helped him escape the Guardian's control. When it came time to destroy the columns, Iolo placed the Rune of Compassion within the column near Despise.
Isle Of Crypts
During the First Age of Darkness, the Isle of Crypts was the site known as the Grave of the Lost Soul, off the northwestern coast of the Lands of Danger and Despair. In the years after the defeat of Mondain and the rise of the Ophidian civilisation in what became known as the Serpent Isle, the island was used as the resting place of the Great Heirophants of Balance, as well as being a place where followers of Balance were raised and trained. After the murder of the last Great Heirophant, the few remaining followers of Balance laid their leader's body to rest, and made the tunnels into deathtraps to prevent the desecration of those who were buried there. The maze was only penetrated by the Stranger from Another World, known in Britannia as the Avatar. The Avatar reached the tomb of the last Great Heirophant and used a spell to speak with his spirit, gaining information needed to restore the Balance of the land from the shade. Upon the completion of the conversation the Heirophant's spirit was released from its self-imposed bondage and entered the Void.
Isle Of The Avatar (also once known as The Isle Of The Abyss)
Prior to the completion of the Quest of the Avatar, the few tales of the island called it the Isle of the Abyss for it is here where the dreaded pit known as the Great Stygian Abyss can be found. Shortly after The Avatar's discovery of The Codex of Ultimate Wisdom within The Great Stygian Abyss, Lord British and a council of mages raised the Codex from the subterranean depths. In this violent magical process a whole island, rife with volcanic activity, rose from the sea.
The island, located in the southeast of Britannia, was christened "The Isle of the Avatar", and on it was erected the Shrine of the Codex, guarded by towering stone guardians who would only allow entry to those on a sacred quest of the shrines. North of the harbour the Shrine of Humility was guarded by the same Daemons which destroyed the towne of Magincia during the Quest of the Avatar. On the southeastern coast of the Isle, the dungeon of Hythloth was found. Prior to the Quest of the Avatar a lighter than air device was left in that area. This flying machine was used by the Stranger in the quest to become the Avatar.
Approximately ten years after The War of the False Prophet, Sir Cabirus founded a colony of diverse races within The Stygian Abyss; Baron Almric oversaw jursidiction from his castle nearby.
Some years after the colony fell into ruin, The Avatar banished The Slasher of Veils , a demon from another dimension, to the void. This set off a volcanic eruption that completely destroyed The Abyss and the surrounding settlements on the Isle of the Avatar.
During the beginning of The Age Of Armageddon, the Fellowship had built a dungeon complex inside the mountains of the Isle. This complex housed the Black Gate, where the Guardian was to emerge from. The complex is believed to have once been the dungeon Hythloth.
Isle Of Fire