A Court of Thorns and Roses Wiki

"What are...," I tried. "What are Illyrian war-bands?"
"Arrogant bastards, that's what," he muttered.

Feyre Archeron asking Rhysand, A Court of Mist and Fury

The Illyrians are a warrior race of faeries, living in the northern region of Illyria in the Night Court, considered by many to be violent and warmongering people.


Illyrians usually form war-camps depending on their views, most camps have a rich culture with similar traditions. While they are unparalleled warriors, with a culture rich in stories and traditions, they are brutal and backward, particularly in regard to how they treat their females, choosing to train only the males. It's common practice to cripple the wings of females so they cannot fly, and they can keep them for breeding. This practice is called Clipping.

In the Illyrian culture, tattoos are shown to be an important part. Once Illyrians are initiated as warriors, they are given certain tattoos for luck and glory on the battlefield. However, to become a true warrior, an Illyrian must perform the Blood Rite, where they go unarmed into the mountains and survive without any magic, necessities and with their wings bound.

Some Illyrians are gifted Siphons, such as Cassian and Azriel, which give them advantages in battle by filtering raw power and transforming it into something more subtle and varied.

Illyrians are neither High Fae nor lesser faeries, although a lot of the High Fae consider them as nothing more than expendable aerial cavalry at best and mindless soldiers grunts at worst. Most have a negative opinion about Illyrians.

Illyrians do not like outsiders, especially High Fae who try to tell them what to do. They are obsessed with lineage and have their own princes and lords among them.

When Feyre Archeron flinches hearing about how Cassian and Rhysand got lashings for picking a fight when they first met, Amren tells her that they do worse. When they do something truly bad, bones are broken, repeatedly, over weeks.

General Appearance[]

Unlike High Fae, Illyrians have rounded ears. Rhysand is the sole exception for having pointed ears, as he is half-Illyrian and half-High Fae. They generally have dark hair and tan to golden-brown skin. Illyrians also have a pair of bat-like wings, and are trained to protect these at all costs. Some Night Court citizens view them as lesser faeries, however due to their human-like appearance, many Illyrians disagree with this assumption.


The Illyrians were created/bred by the Daglan.[1] They migrated from the Myrmidons.[2]

Known Illyrians[]


  • Outside of the A Court of Thorns and Roses world, the Illyrians were a group of Indo-European tribes who inhabited part of the western Balkans and the southeastern coasts of the Italian peninsula.[3]
  • The Illyrian race is strikingly similar to the Eyrian race from Anne Bishop's Black Jewels Series in regard to appearance and culture.
  • On the insignia of the Night Court, the three stars atop the mountain Ramiel are called: Arktos, Carynth, and Oristes. Outside of the book world, Carynthia or Duchy of Carinthia was located in southern Austria and parts of northern Slovenia. Moreover, Oristes is similar to Orestes, a character from Greek mythology whose name is thought to have the meaning "stands on a mountain".
  • The Malakh is another race created by the Daglan when they arrived and colonized Midgard. It was clarified by Regulus that the Daglan/Asteri had created "prototypes" in Prythian when they colonized it for their soldiers and army. And from Vesperus's words, it was implied that these prototypes are the Illyrians. With the later created Malakh being stated to be a more powerful version of them.