Faerun Hours of the Day

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Instead of being divided into twenty-four hour increments, the Faerûnian day is divided into twelve sections that are based entirely on what the quality of light is at that given time. Thus, while there are twelve portions of them, they are not even divided up: in summer, the time between dawn and lastride (dusk) may be fifteen or sixteen hours, while in winter, that time is reduced to eleven or twelve hours.

In Waterdeep, these notary points have been figured out by astrologers with some degree of precision. The Timehands clock in the tallest tower of the Open Lord's Palace ring out at each of those points. Rather than the bellring being a numbered count ("three bells," for instance), each one is a different combination of notes, a short, distinctive refrain that those familiar with the city come to quickly identify. Many in the city set timing by these bells: for instance, the eventide bells are sometimes called "Gateclose," for it is when they are rung that the city's gates close for the night.

Times of Day

  • godswake: predawn
  • dawn
  • harbright: full morning
  • elsun: late morning
  • highsun: noon
  • thulsun: early afternoon
  • tharsun: late afternoon; sometimes called "highthar" by merchants, after the traditional meal break at that time of day. Sometimes also called "longride."
  • lastride: dusk
  • eventide: gloaming, pre-evening; still light out, though the sun has set or is setting
  • eldark: full night, but before midnight; considered the "civilized" or social time of night
  • deepnight: midnight
  • thuldark: the night between midnight and godswake; considered the "unseemly" time of night, for intrigues, assignation, and revelry gone far too long.