Monday, 2 November 2015

The Legends of Magic

Ever since beginning my blog at the start of this year I have been covering old, old sources. A lot of them have been pretty obscure. Most people remember Arena, and know there have been comics, but the later Harper Prism novels? Serra Angel and Nightmare? This stuff has been out of print for ages and long forgotten by most people. Most old issues of The Duelist have been gathering dust in attics for the past decade, and even the websites we've looked at can only be found in archived form.

Nowadays we have the MTGSalvation wiki, which at least has a little paragraph on the main characters of these stories. What did we do before that? Well, mostly we pretended that the lore began with Weatherlight, to be honest. But there was one way for us to learn about old stuff: ask the old folks on the forums. One of those old folks was Jeff Lee, To keep all this information from disappearing altogether, he created a website: The Legends of Magic.

Obviously a very worthy cause, and I can't help but feel Jeff and I are kindred spirits in some sense, but why should this blog look at his site? Surely it is just a fan creation, echoing the stuff I've already covered? Well, there is a bit more to it than that. For one, Jeff was in contact with Pete Venters and was a friend of Teri McLaren, the author of Cursed Land and Song of Time. Thanks to those contacts his site actually contains unique material not released anywhere else! Furthermore, while I have been able to drag up most ancient sources, with some amazing help here and there, there actually is stuff no one seems to have seen in years. For example, the Elder Dragon War was first mentioned in a tear away calendar of which, as far as we know, no copies have survived. This means that until Wizards made a throwaway reference to it in Nicol Bolas' character profile, Jeff's site was the only known source on the Elder Dragon War. Yeah. Bizarre, isn't it?

A problem presents itself though. This site contains unique information, but we can't just assume it is all canon. It remains a fan creation and contains very little in the way of annotations, as well as a number of mistakes and even some fan speculation presented as facts. And don't underestimate the impact this site has had on the Vorthos community! The unique facts presented here, which unfortunately also includes some of the mistakes, were repeated first on, then the MTGSalvation forum and finally the MTGSalvation wiki, where they can still be found till this very day! So there is only one thing I can do. Going through the entry website and analyze every little corner of it to separate the true gold from the pyrite.

Shall we?

The main attractions of the site are Jeff's covering of the stories of four expansions (Arabian Nights, Legends, Ice Age and Mirage) and his overview of Planes and Planeswalkers. I will be going through all of them, dealing with some of the minor other stuff along the way. I will start with Arabian Nights, which is of course the first set covered, but also happens to be the best example of why this site is a problematic source.

At first this seems like a treasure trove of unique information. It contains scans from the Arabian Nights comic and a bunch of information taken straight from the Encyclopedia Dominia. Compare Jeff's line "one Rabiah has evolved itself into an evil plane that is comparable to Phyrexia." to "a realm of horrific evil rivaling Phyrexia itself for sheer despair and terror", a line taken from the Rabiah entry of the Encyclopedia. It's not quite the same, and Jeff's phrasing might make you think that one Rabiah is turning into a machine hell, but the source is clear. 

After this info we know is true thanks to it appearing in other sources comes a dazzling amount of new lore. Did you know that there are six tribes of Djinn? They are the True Djinn, the Efreeti, Marids, Ghouls, Nekrataals (yes, really!) and the Djann. The Djann are all white aligned but never made it into the card game. When a bunch of Djinn sought to "better themselves" (presumably by converting to Islam and becoming Djann) a war broke out between them and the Efreeti. A war unfortunately called the Jihad of Spirits. The Marids stepped in and ended the conflict, but the tribes were left weakened and King Suleiman captured 70 Djinn to do his bidding. This, as well as the times of Fatima, Ali from Cairo, Aladdin and all the other literary figures that got cards in the Arabian Nights expansion all happened before the Refraction turned Rabiah into a 1001 planes.

Pretty amazing eh, all this world building for Rabiah? Well, don't get too excited. Look at this quote from Jeff himself, which he posted on MTGSalvation shortly after that site was founded:
"...a great deal of the information comes from the Acclaim comics you guys have found. However, the Arabian Nights background, particularly for mythology (i.e. the djinn and efreets, my favorite part of the cards) was sourced from literature and outside sites. So it's not necessarily reflective of Magic continuity, although I don't recall any of it explicitly contradicting what Pete Venters and other authors developed for the Rabiah setting."
...yeah. All that good stuff we've just been reading is not official MTG canon, but Arabic mythology and folklore. And on closer inspection the way the events of the comic are covered doesn't really match the printed story either. Here it seems to suggest Taysir had already ascended and that the Refraction split him in 5 parts which had to be reunited. The Black Taysir, manipulated by Nailah, found his 4 counterparts with the intention to kill them, but the white one convinced him to merge with them instead. Raghib "paralyzing [Nailah] and threatening her with marriage" doesn't fit either. Raghib does paralyze Nailah (for about five seconds), but all talk of them marrying happened years before, and he thought she wanted to marry him for love, he never threatened her.

So do we just ignore everything we read here? Well, that's going to be tricky. Jeff's contact with Pete Venters is also felt in these pages, like when he mentions that Nekrataal was originally going to be a Sheitan before Wizards decided against actually calling one of their cards "Satan". Plus it's going to be virtually impossible to rid the lore community of the influence of these pages. The MTGSalvation wiki still gives all the stuff about Djinn as facts, for example. And nowadays we all talk about the event that turned Rabiah into a 1001 planes as The Refraction. While the Encyclopedia Dominia entry on Rabiah does say "Rabiah split and refracted across a thousand and one planes", the idea that this event had a name and was called The Refraction (or even The Thousandfold Refraction) is found nowhere in the official sources. It's all coming from The Legends of Magic. Heck, his influence has even spread beyond the realm of Magic. Here's a blog about Djinn that clearly copied some stuff from the MTGSalvation wiki!

By the way, I found that blog while doing some googling to see if Nekrataal really was a term from Arabic lore of if Jeff was using behind the scenes info here. The pages I found only confused me further. There was one that seemed to be about actually controlling Djinn in real life, for example. I did find out the King Jan bin Jan, the latest Emberwild Caliph according to The Legends of Magic, turns out to be a name straight from folklore.

So what can we do? Well, I consider at least all the Djinn stuff out of continuity, and thus wont put the Jihad of Spirits on my timeline. However, exorcising all that stuff from the community at large will simply be impossible. At this point I doubt even the people working at Wizards still know what was supposed to be canon and what not. "Luckily" it doesn't really matter. With its references to Islam and place names straight from the actual Middle-East, a Return to Rabiah block is about a million times less like than even Return to Ulgrotha. Fan fiction is the only place where the plane may reappear, and the ficcer in question is of course free to accept all this stuff as fact, or dismiss it, whatever they prefer.

There is one thing this section did make me question though, and that is the Refraction (I will keep using the term in capitals. Old habits die hard.) When exactly did that thing happen? I always assumed that it happened during Taysir's lifetime, since he was only refracted 5 times, instead of a 1001. And since he is (They are?) clearly mortal in the Arabian Nights comic, I thus assumed that the Refraction happened shortly before said comic. Yet Jeff states that it happened long, long before the that time. However, he also seems to think Taysir was already a planeswalker before the Refraction and that his 5 forms were as well, saying Taysir and Nailah were both "very old".

So its not a very convincing statement, but it did make me look back through the other sources on Rabiah. The comic doesn't mention the Refraction at all, just stating that there are "thousands" of Rabiahs, and that they are all similar, but not how they came to be. There Nailah also says that "the lore of the ancients" foretold "the one made of five", but that doesn't really prove anything. The Story of the Battlemage Ravidel puts Taysir's ascension after the Brothers' War (a claim of which I doubt the verity, but we've talked about that several times already) and doesn't mention the Refraction either. The only source that reveals that Rabiah was once one plane that then refracted is the Encyclopedia Dominia, but the only hint as to when it happens is "in ancient days". Not very helpful. Is the Brothers' War ancient? Or do we have to go all the way back to The Thran?

Bottom line is, we don't know when the Refraction happened. And while I'm not the only one who followed the logic of "it must have happened during Taysir's life", all these references to ancient times are giving me some doubt. It also seems like there was only one Nailah, Raghib and El-Hallaj. Maybe Rabiah refracted long before Taysir's birth and the planes diverged so far from one another that nobody on them had direct counterparts anymore, making Taysir special as a person who exist in multiple Rabiahs at once. How that could be possible? I don't know. But between characters like Aladdin and Ali Baba on the one hand, and the stories from the Encyclopedia Dominia on the other Rabiah has always been a strange place in which fables appear to have really happened. Whatever the case may be, I am no longer convinced we have solid proof that the Refraction happened during his lifetime and am thus removing mention of it from the timeline, at least until more proof turns up.

Legends doesn't have a set story, but there is plenty of lore there. Here too things are a bit shaky, but not because outside lore was imported.

Partly the problems arise from later ret-cons. Take the Null Moon for example. We've seen a number of references to it being artificial and of mysterious origin throughout our looks at the Harper Prism novels and Armada comics. Jeff reveals that after the fall of the Thran Empire a period called the Golden Age began, in which a lot of the Legendary Creatures form Legends lived. This Golden Age ended with the rise of the Null Moon, some time before the Brothers' War. In an unrelated note, it is also stated that the Thran had an interplanar empire, and that Rabiah was one of the few planes that could resist their conquest. Previously we only knew that the Thran could create interplanar portals, the empire bit is new. This all seems way to specific for it to be fan interpretations, so I am willing to accept these facts, and the use of terms like the Golden Age of Magic and The Empty Quarter (which all used here for the first and only time), as originally coming from Pete Venters and thus being canonical. At the time at least.

However, all this pretty much goes out the window with the novel The Thran. The Thran couldn't create portals, they had just the one, which was created for them by the planeswalker Dyfed. The only plane they ever spread to was Phyrexia. And the Null Moon was launched at the climax of the civil war that destroyed the Thran. So, was there no Golden Age then? Well, stories like Dakkon Blackblade still have to happen somewhen. The rise of the moon is not relevant to the stories of the Legends comics at all, and there are other sources that place them both "millennia after the Thran" and "centuries before the Brothers", so the Golden Age can stay where it was. It just wasn't punctuated with a new satellite being put into orbit. A special case is "The Brass Man who would Sink" from Tapestries. Unlike the other stories from the Golden Age, this story specifically mentions that it happened before the moon came into orbit. Since there is nothing else that puts this story, and the linked story "City of Brass" from the Encyclopedia Dominia, in the Golden Age, I prefer to actually move this story back in time to pre-Thran days, so we don't have to mentally edit out the reference to the moon.

The second major source in interest here is the list of Legendary Creatures from Legends. The description of them comes from a variety of sources. His short description of Riven Turnbull seems to be taken just from Riven's flavor text. Tobias Andrion and Torsten von Ursus's stories come from the Encyclopedia Dominia entries on Benalia. Johan and Hunding Gjornersen's clearly come from the Jedit Ojanen comic. Jaques le Vert fighting the Brute comes from Final Sacrifice. Finally, the backstories of Angus McKenzie, Jasmine Boreal and Gosta Dirk originated in Magic's 1997 calendar, which Gavin Verhey has been posting pictures of last year. There is some information I can't place though. For example, we have the Fifth Edition flavor text of Pradesh Gypsies linking Lord Magnus to Llanowar, but Jeff also calls him a "native avatar". Is that behind the scenes information, or his personal interpretation? For his description of Lady Evangela and Nebuchadnezzar I haven't been able to find any sources at all.

Here's the thing though: in some posts he made on MTGSally, Jeff himself revealed that he took some information on the Legends section from a tear away calendar with "numerous discrete storylines" and "storyline vignettes". Now, some people believe this to be the calendar Gavin has posted. If that's the case I would assume that the information on Legends not from that calendar (Lady Evangela, Nebuchadnezzar, etc.) was given to Jeff by Pete Venters. However, Jeff has also stated that "about a third of these pages" (of the calendar) dealt with characters from Legends, and that he used the calendar, in conjunction to the comics and talks with Pete Venters, when dealing with the Dragon War (more on that below.) Those references don't fit Gavin's calendar. It only talks about a handful of Legends and tells us nothing about Elder Dragons, Elder Land Wurms or the War. So, is there another calendar out there? A quick Ebay search reveal that there were monthly calendars from at least 1995 till 1999, but the only daily, tear away one I could find was the one Gavin has. So the mystery is still unsolved.

One day, when I have run out of other stuff to talk about on this blog, I will buy up all these calendars from Ebay. Maybe then I will finally be able to figure it out! Until then, I'd say we can believe that what Jeff wrote down about all these characters. We have him citing his sources, and unlike those used for the Arabian Nights section they are sound ones. Unfortunately the Legends I and Legends II trilogies then ret-conned the story of a number of these characters, but that's a story for another day.

Finally, there is the Dragon War. I've already talked about that in a separate article, but the tl;dr version is this: Jeff Lee's account of the Elder Dragon War is the only one we have, but unfortunately it has a lot of mistakes. For example, he places Sivitri Scarzam's first attack on Corondor during the war, but the Dragon War story clearly states it happened shortly before Geyadrone Dihada turned up on Corondor. He also states that Piru is a Lesser Elder, but Jeff himself has later revealed this was the result of discussions on the old storyline fora, not some behind to scenes information he recieved.

The Elder Dragon Wars are one of the most captivating part of the lore, being the first thing on every timeline and one of the few events on a Multiversal scale. Yet unless that calendar ever resurfaces the only account we have on it is one that makes a number of glaring errors and assumptions. (Well, there is the Nicol Bolas character piece I mentioned at the start, but that doesn't do anything other that acknowledging the war happened.) A frustrating situation. In the Arabian Nights section I opted to ignore all the bits about the Djinn, since we know it came from non-Magic sources. Here the situation is different, since we know Jeff's sources are sound: official Magic publications and discussions with creative team members. We just don't know if he made any more mistakes while writing the info down. For me this difference is crucial. In the case of the Elder Dragons I will thus vote for keeping all the info here in continuity, unless proven otherwise. (Everyone, fingers crossed that calendar will be rediscovered one day!)

Here the sources used become a lot clearer. The Ice Age and Fallen Empire comics are featured, as is Song of Time. So this section does not require an extensive search for the origin of the information. But there are some mistakes I would like to note. These have mostly to do with the comic. Since the plot summary of Arabian Nights didn't really fit the comic either, and Sivitri Scarzam was placed in entirely the wrong time, this actually makes me wonder if Jeff had the comics on hand while writing this, or if he had to rely on second hand information.

Take these quotes for example:
"As the glaciers of the north neared, powered by ancient Phyrexian magic, the jewel clans of Storgard fell into civil war over what to do. The winning clan fled Storgard, while the losing Ruby Clan stayed and risked the dangers of the incoming glacier. At the end of the battle, the champion of the Ruby Clan, the red mage Freyalise, was struck down by her opponents, allied with the dark being Tevesh Szat. She was reborn as a higher being and with the help of Jason Carthalion converted her powers to that of the forests, becoming a true planeswalker."
"One thousand years later, the last of the Ruby Clan migrated east from Storgard (while the other clans had moved south millenia ago). A region fertile with hot springs was found, and the hero Kjeld created the new country that would be known as Kjeldor"
Phyrexian magic used to increase the glaciers? That was a plot point in the last issue of Ice Age, not the first. And Jason didn't help Freyalise become a planeswalker, he was the one who killed her! He inspired her to use green mana, but didn't assist her personally. And Kjeldor was founded by the clans that headed out of Storgard after the duel, and named after Oriel Kjeldos. There was no dude named Kjeld involved. Other mistakes are minor, and clearly just typo's, like when it says Piru was present at the Summit of the Null Moon. Luckily here the sources of the websites are both know and still available, so we don't have to decide what to do with the mistakes. Clearly the novels and comics are officially published sources and take precedent.

The only place where I do wonder about the source is when he says that Lord Ith and Tivadar led a crusade against the goblins. It is especially odd considering this article on which states that Tivadar teamed up with Rasputin Dreamweaver instead! How do you mix those two up? I mean, nowadays maybe, as they are both white/blue Human Wizards, but Jeff made his site long before Ith had a card or Rasputin was errata'd into having a creature type!

A quick side note: there is some confusion about Lord Ith and Barl, stemming from the flavor text of Dark Sphere. It suggests, and Jeff follows suit, that Ith and Barl are the same character. The article above states that Jeff Grubb made a mistake when writing The Gathering Dark, splitting the two into separate characters. The acknowledgements of The Gathering Dark actually state that mister Grubb checked with Jesper Myfors, lead designer of The Dark, whether Barl and Mairsil were separate characters. Ith is not mentioned. So clearly a mistake was made somewhere along the line, but what exactly is going on still seems unclear.

Ah. Eh, yes. How appropriate. After numerous instances of me pointing out mistakes made by Jeff, Jeff's site now makes me realize I myself have made a mistake. Or rather, that I had overlooked another source! You see, he gives the history of Jamuraa in far greater detail than either The Duelist or The Duelist Online did. And when he starts referencing Queen Yormeba I suddenly realized: there is another telling of the Mirage story. A document, as far as I know never officially released, similar to the Homelands Document.

So I'm going to skip this bit of the site, and instead do another pre-rev article, a look at what I will from now on call the Mirage Document. In that article I will also compare it to all the other tellings of the Mirage story, the one in The Duelist, the one from The Duelist Online and the one from Jeff''s site. Hey, for a story without a novel Mirage sure had many different versions of its backstory told!

I'm sure some of you let out an exasperated sigh just now, as you are looking forward to me covering the Weahterlight Saga and don't want me to spend another week on the Mirage story we already covered for the most part. You know what, you are right. I've been teasing the Weatherlight saga for far to long and it is about time that I start delivering on my promise. Next week we will finally move on from the pre-rev realm, and the review of the Mirage Document, and some other stuff like reviews of the earliest issues of The Duelist, will become extra reviews that will be put up... some day. I'm not going to commit to a date yet, the Weatherlight Saga has priority for the moment!

But let's wrap up the look at The Legends of Magic first!

The description of how planeswalkers work given here is clearly taken from Dominian Chronicles #1. All the other information is also easily traced to the comics and the Harper Prism novels, although again there seems to be some miscommunication about what actually happened in the Ice Age comic, as here Leshrac, instead of Tevesh Szat, is said to have wanted to freeze all of Dominaria to death.

This part of the website has some interesting historical facts. For example, Yawgmoth, Gaea and Titania are included in the list of planeswalkers. This is of course contradicted directly by a lot of later stories, but as Jeff clearly states on his main page, he is only concerned with pre-rev continuity. Thing is, I have never seen any other sources that state the 'walkerhood of these three characters. It might have been mentioned in the 0 issue of The Duelist, which talked about the Antiquities story. If everything pans out scans of the earliest The Duelist issues are now coming my way, so I'm excited to see how, and if, these characters are mentioned!

Curiously, despite being explicitly concerned only with pre-rev continuity, The Legends of Magic does make mention of places like Serra's Realm and Rath, which were both introduced during the Weatherlight Saga. (Homelands does not tell us anything about what Serra was up to before coming to Ulgrotha.)

There are some mistakes on the list of planes. (Note that the Dominian Planetarium mentioned under "updates" on the main page is something different from the Worlds page.) One of the planes listed is Torwynn, which came from a fan publication. I don't know why Jeff thought it was a real plane. There is also Ashtok. In Shattered Chains Chaney says something along the lines of "Phyrexia is a plane of demons, like Ashtok". Jeff Lee interpreted this as Ashtok being another demon-rich plane. However, it could also be interpreted as Ashtok being a demon. Years ago I e-mailed the author, Clayton Emery, about this, and he said he had intended for the latter interpretation. Finally, Jeff also states that the Nether Void and The Abyss are planes, but the exact nature of the Planar Voids is not really clear. In fact, the card Planar Void suggests the term may refer to the space between planes, the Blind Eternities. Still, the Nether Void and The Abyss are Multiversal, plane-like phenomenon at the very least, so you can't really fault Jeff for putting them on the list.

The planes section also has a number of mistakes, like saying the guilds of Shandalar existed before Lim-Dûl war, the claim that Lim-Dûl, Sol'kanar and Sivitri Scarzam were planeswalkers and that the
Domains are east of Jamuraa and Corondor to the west of Terisiare. Judging from the fact that all this is contradicted by other parts of the website it seems the plane sections were just in need of some more editing that Jeff never got around to. He does note that different cultures of Dominaria call the Null Moon either Glitter Moon or Glimmer Moon, which I can appreciate, as during writing this blog I've become quite intrigued by the many names of Dominaria's moons.

There is a "timeline" link at the bottom of the page. It goes to a dead page. That has been frustrating me for years now.

Still, there is something interesting to say about the timeline, specifically the knotty issue of Homelands. Jeff doesn't cover Homelands, but hidden on the planeswalkers and planes pages there are the claims that Sandruu was exiled for only 70 years (it would've been millennia, but the Mox Beacon pulled him to Dominaria), and that Ravi rang the Apocalypse Chime in 3535.

Now, 3535 is a suspiciously precise number. Jeff may have made some mistakes here and there, but he doesn't just pull numbers out of thin air. And get this, 4130 (the end date for Homelands given on the official timeline) minus 600 (the time between the ringing of the Chime and the collapse of Feroz's Ban, the beginning and end of the timeline from the comic) is 3530, which is way too close to 3535 to be a coincidence. I have since traced the origin of that timeline to the February 1999 issue of The Duelist, and that is about the same time that updates to The Legends of Magic stop. So it could be that Jeff made the same calculation. But then why put 3535, rather than 3530? A typo? Or did he get this date from Pete Venters, and is this confirmation that we should interpret 4130 as being the collapse of the Ban? It's certainly tempting to think so.

Unfortunately, the 3535 date doesn't square with Sandruu being gone for 70 years. If the Chime was rung in either 3530 or 3535, according to the timeline in the Homelands comic Sandruu should be exiled in 3910 or 3915, which would place the Planeswalkers War in either 3980 or 3985. That is in fact where I put it on my original timeline and where the MTGSally wiki timeline still has it. But we know from the Battlemage game that the War has to happen simultaneously to the Mirage War, in 4196. Did Jeff miscalculate? Did he not know about the mention of Kaervek in the Battlemage game? But then where did he get the 70 years date from? Did Pete Venters not know about the Kaervek reference and did he intend the Planeswalkers War to happen around 3980?

Whatever the case, I will keep my timeline as is. The proof that the war happened in 4196 over 3980/3985 is conclusive. The 3535/3530 dates match up very well, which does enforce the idea in my mind that it is the correct placement, but without knowing where the date came from I find it difficult to accept it as solid evidence, especially not since Sandruu being gone for 70 years doesn't match up with it. I'd love to move the ringing of the Chime 5 years later and to remove the "~" from the date, but unless more info emerges about where the 3535 date came from I'm not going to.

Well, after that long, long article, I must admit I feel kinda bad. Jeff Lee has been a huge blessing for the storyline community, His website has allowed later generations of fans a peek into the earliest lore of Magic, providing us with information that would otherwise have stayed behind the scenes, or would have been lost when the calendars it was written on were thrown away. Yet here I am, seemingly criticizing everything he wrote and bringing up every little mistake he made. But if you're not willing to bring to light the mistakes made by the people you admire, you shouldn't be writing history.

The Legends of Magic is still an amazing website, one of the most influential places of information in the history of the storyline community and in many ways an inspiration for the project I am currently undertaking. While it may no longer be mandatory reading for every Vorthos, considering the amount of stuff that has been ret-conned away since, it is still mandatory reading for anyone with an interest in the development of Magic's lore and the history of the storyline community. You will discover a lot about the early days of Magic and come to realize just how huge a debt we owe to Jeff's efforts back in the day.

And Jeff, if you're reading this, feel free to make endless fun of the mistakes I made when I was compiling info and timelines, back when MTGSalvation was young!

With that we have, for the moment, reached the end of what is generally called the pre-revisionist era. As I mentioned we will be making some short trips back to that period somewhere in the future, to look at the handful of sources I had either forgotten (the Mirage document) or not yet been able to acquire (The Duelist #0-4), but for the foreseeable future we will be dealing with something completely different. Ongoing storylines! Recognizable characters! Story and cards intertwined in a way we haven't seen before! All aboard people, the Weatherlight is setting sail!


  1. I could have sworn that one of the anthologies novels had Tivadar and Ith working together. It must have been my imagination. I can't believe it's not real, I thought for years that they were a team....

  2. "With its references to Islam and place names straight from the actual Middle-East, a Return to Rabiah block is about a million times less like than even Return to Ulgrotha."

    Too true - at least, regarding an EXPLICIT return. But can I really be the only one who read Agents of Artifice, saw Tezzeret headquartered out of a strange metal building in the middle of a massive nomad-inhabited desert, realized that said metal citadel produced scalding yet mana-rich steam, and said "aha! That bastard took over the City of Brass!"

  3. Lady Evangela's bit comes from Final Sacrifice (one of the mosaics of Lat-Nam), while Nebuchadnezzar's from Gavin's calendar.