Tanis Half-Elven is a fictional half-elven character in the Dragonlance series of books, which were published by TSR, and are now published by Wizards of the Coast. He is first introduced in the book Dragons of Autumn Twilight by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman, in Chapter 1: "Old Friends Meet. A Rude Interruption." They introduce him saying that he was half-elven, armed with a longbow and a sword and wearing leather armor.
As with the other protagonists of this trilogy, Tanis's first appearance was during a role-playing game session in which Tracy and Laura Hickman, Margaret Weis and Terry Phillips between others, set up the basic storyline of Dragonlance.
In the beginning, Margaret Weis had problems picturing the correct representation of Tanis. Tracy Hickman finally told her, "He's James T. Kirk of the Starship Enterprise." After that explanation, Margaret had no more troubles while writing about Tanis.
Two accounts of Tanthalas Quisif-Nan Pah's (Tanis' elven name) birth exist. Both agree that Tanis was born in Qualinost, in 258 A.C. The first account is the Chronicles Trilogy, which states that Tanis was a product of rape. It is also described in the first chapter of Kindred Spirits. The violent nature of his conception, the nature of his birth, and the choice of his mother to die from shock after her assault all influenced the way the elves regarded Tanis and shaped his developmental years.
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Official Site: Wizards of the Coast
Links: Tanis Wiki Dragonlance Wiki Dragonlance Nexus