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Helsing
05-03-2010, 12:06
Its not exactly a well kept secret that Eldar populations on craftworld could be minimum at least 15 million. in some fluff its like ten thousand (which is absurd really). so do the Eldar have such small pops. because they're trying to avoid inbreeding (which could have way more severe consequences for them) over virtually millions of years in isolation?

Idaan
05-03-2010, 12:28
No fluff except for RT (which is really outdated) has mentioned any solid numbers about population sizes of the Craftworlds. There is however some evidence to support them being in billions - mainly the fact that the Corsair capital ships in BFG have crews of about 10 000 according to Andy Chambers, and they're crewed by the outcasts of society, walking the very skirts of another Fall - a fringe group really.

Regarding the inbreeding thing. That's not a problem either - according to "Xenology" the Eldar genetic code is so stable that it hasn't changed in last 10 millions of years, so they're not prone to mutation or hidden genetic malfunctions. Some posters have proposed that the Eldar have "updated" their genes themselves sometime during the rise of their Empire.

Indeed it is my pet theory that in the Empire the noble families and mythic Houses like Eldanesh and Ulthanash had brothers marrying sisters in order to keep their blood pure for these 60 millions of years.

Condottiere
05-03-2010, 13:12
That sounds elitist, and while there might have been no biological penalties, it might have led to the corruption of the spirit.

TheShadowCow
05-03-2010, 14:06
... it might have led to the corruption of the spirit.

Can you expand a little more on this?

Radium
05-03-2010, 14:14
... Which would only serve to blind them from the coming Fall...

Hellebore
05-03-2010, 14:21
If the eldar have no deliterious mutations in their genes then inbreeding would hold no particular social stigma like it does with humans. Primitive peoples would see the results of incestuous relationships (often but not always handicapped individuals) and see it as a sign that you shouldn't do this (not that it stopped alot of ancient cultures anyway, generally for some god complex reason or something).

The idea of having children with your sister/brother would not be seen as bad if the child was always as fit and healthy as any other.

This would provide them with few moral 'hangups' compared to humans. Perhaps the lack of consequences in their society is what ultimately lead them to Slannesh? No I'm not inferring that X is always 'bad', rather the eldar may not have had many physical consequences to their actions making them woefully unprepared for the ultimate consequence down the road.

Hellebore

Condottiere
05-03-2010, 15:43
Morality is always a two edged sword; do Eldar feel principally shame or guilt if they break a social more or law? And if there are only customs that may be broken, rather than rigid codes, at what point does it cross any boundary?

One reason to have family members marry into other families or clans was to strengthen relationships/alliances between the two; becoming insular may have contributed to losing a certain perspective and that prspective may have been required to recognize spiritual malaise.

Hellebore
05-03-2010, 16:02
It also depends on how advanced they were. We are told they ruled the galaxy at the height of their empire 1 million years ago. We are told they had automatous armies defending them and they could reshape planets/extinguish stars.

We could assume then that they had conquered disease and malady and had absolute control over pregnancy.

This would have further ramifications on their ethical identities. If they were originally a natural being and weren't created from scratch then sexual reproduction would be at the centre of their psychology (as only those interested in sex would breed and thus promote sexual interest).

Thus by the time they've conquered their bodies there would be no sexual inhibitions as there would be no consequences of sexual contact. No disease or pregnancy and no social stigma for incestuous relationships.

Their advancement would have removed quite a lot of pressure from them psychosexually. As sexuality is one of the core components of human identity and psychology and the governance of that paramount in a functioning society one can imagine what happens when you remove any and all negative consequences from it.

Hellebore

Condottiere
05-03-2010, 16:07
Would be interesting if they ever tried cloning, since I assume they could fix that string that keeps tabs on how often the genes replicated themselves.

Hellebore
05-03-2010, 16:14
Cloning is a funny one. They obviously have clones already as they are described as having twins and even triplets. Identical twins being clones.

The idea that eldar don't have enough souls to repopulate doesn't make sense in the context of clone twins.

I can imagine them making clone slaves for their own gratification, swapping clone slaves between them for entertainment. Forcing their clones to fight to the death in arenas.

Actually given their psychic potential it's not unreasonable to suggest that they psychically controlled their clone as a puppet and fought bloody battles 'themselves'. This would give them the sensation of pain, battle and death without ever actually having to suffer it.

hellebore

Condottiere
05-03-2010, 16:20
It's obvious that Avatar is spreading it's cultural influence. :shifty:

Though, TBH, that aspect isn't new to scifi.

Hellebore
05-03-2010, 16:22
Lol didn't think of that. I was actually thinking in terms of the soul of an eldar controlling wraithguard and titans etc. It doesn't seem like much of a stretch to have a living eldar control a living eldar with a soul link (especially if they are 'the same' eldar). Like the stones used in Farseer on the Rogue Trader's head.

Hellebore

spetswalshe
05-03-2010, 16:24
They're probably perfectly capable of removing degenerative traits in unborn children, and I imagine Eldar inoculations cover just about everything. Even if they don't, they probably think they do, and are too arrogant and proud to admit that the mon'keigh could really come up with an engineered plague that could devestate a Craftworld from within. Even while they're spitting up blood.

Also, inbreeding depression - the event whereby inbreeding leads to a weakening of a population in general (say, weakness to a certain disease), which usually happens post-bottleneck event (say, the Fall) - is not always inevitable. The Naked Mole Rat, for example, shows absolutely no sign of it - despite being eusocial (like bees), meaning a colony reproduces from the same female queen and a couple of male sires, always closely related. Similarly, while most pedigree dog breeds are crippled by inbreeding, some have been lucky and actually bred out the negative traits, purely by chance. Apparently, given enough time and the lack of new genetic information, inbreeding can actually make a strong and healthy population, and so inbreeding can be continued indefinately.

Ultimately, we don't know enough about Eldar society to be able to make this kind of call. Human inbreeding is a social stigma, reinforced (and created) by the tendency for weak offspring. If the Eldar never had that tendency, it's unlikely they'd develop the stigma. Even if they did, hundreds of thousands of years of technological progress could eliminate the genetic need and the social stigma could erode with time. To put it bluntly, we don't know if the Eldar see making out with your sister as a bad thing, a good thing, or none of anybody's business.

edit; thinking about it, human inbreeding is likely to be rife in the Imperium anyway - noble houses, feral worlders, that kind of thing - so we can't really point the finger.

Condottiere
05-03-2010, 16:29
I assume they have a lifespan of around five millenia, and possibly may even experience life at a faster pace than we can, so fooling around with your sister-mother may only occupy them for a couple of centuries, before they move on.

Inquisitor Engel
05-03-2010, 18:54
I assume they have a lifespan of around five millenia, and possibly may even experience life at a faster pace than we can, so fooling around with your sister-mother may only occupy them for a couple of centuries, before they move on.

Eldrad was minimum 10,000 years old (he's already head Seer of Ulthwe in 'Fulgrim') by the time he becomes snacky-bits for a Keeper of Secrets. We don't even know if that's overly exceptional.

Idaan
05-03-2010, 19:27
It is:
Eldar are extremely long lived by Human standards, commonly surviving for over a thousand years before old age overtakes them.
Moreover, we know from Craftworld Codex that Eldrad would have crystallised and died earlier if his unfinished tasks didn't keep him going.

Griffindale
05-03-2010, 19:30
Weren't the two farseers from Dawn of War sisters from different craftworlds?

Nkari
05-03-2010, 22:47
You only need a population of 150 persons to avoid inbreeding, so 10 000 eldar in one craft world makes for no inbreeding..

Messiah
05-03-2010, 23:01
I think that number is actually around 3000, hence the danger for tigers. But your point stands.

Condottiere
06-03-2010, 00:34
Interesting; 150 is approximately our monkey sphere.

FarseerMatt
06-03-2010, 09:26
Weren't the two farseers from Dawn of War sisters from different craftworlds?

Where on earth did you hear that?

Hellebore
06-03-2010, 09:48
Where on earth did you hear that?

A reputable sauce (http://1d4chan.org/wiki/Love_Can_Bloom).

Hellebore

Idaan
06-03-2010, 10:34
Some people might question your right to destroy an imageboard. Those who understand realise that you have no right to let it exist.
In Exterminatus Extremis.

Helsing
06-03-2010, 23:17
A reputable sauce (http://1d4chan.org/wiki/Love_Can_Bloom).

Hellebore

as smoking hot as an Eldar chick is (rule of cool IIRC) Im pretty sure the Vindicare would still take her head off :cries:

Condottiere
07-03-2010, 00:31
Could be astral pheromones; they may have forgotten to psychically shield him.

Helsing
07-03-2010, 00:41
A reputable sauce (http://1d4chan.org/wiki/Love_Can_Bloom).

Hellebore

as smoking hot as an Eldar chick is (rule of cool IIRC) Im pretty sure the Vindicare would still take her head off :cries:

Griffindale
07-03-2010, 06:45
I just want to deny having ever read that story. I also want to deny having ever purposefully visited 4chan.

Thank you and good day.

NightrawenII
07-03-2010, 07:42
A reputable sauce (http://1d4chan.org/wiki/Love_Can_Bloom).

Hellebore
Heresy, I say HERESY.
http://www.bolterandchainsword.com/uploads/1267813714/gallery_46250_4081_60384.png (http://www.bolterandchainsword.com/index.php?autocom=gallery&req=si&img=45391)

Helsing
07-03-2010, 12:23
but i was expecting the Spanish Inquisition!
No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!