There have been a handful of Druids in Terry’s Shannara series, Druids who have helped shape the world of the Four Lands as we know it.
Some of them have had a larger hand than others; some have lived short, glorious lives and died gruesomely. All of them have touched readers in some way and I am always amazed at the level of love Terry’s readers have for even the least-used Druid.
The fan favorite seems to be Allanon. He was truly the first Druid readers got to know well and his strength of character lasted three entire stories. Walker Boh is another favorite, who got appearances in two stories. They are very different Druids though, and the others on the list below are just as different and have fan followings of their own.
So, who is your favorite Druid? Vote and then comment below!
70 responses to “Poll: Who is your favorite Druid?”
Team Cogline! 🙂
Cogline was perhaps one of my favorite character of all time. Druid or not. Genius and madness blended well into a very lovable and well rounded character. But, I was only mildly upset that Brona was not included in this list as he was a Druid too, my vote would have went to him.. ^~.
Terry Brooks was the first novel I ever read. I can clearly remember sneaking The Elfstones of Shannara out of my mother’s study and reading my way through the book at the age of 7. To this date I own All of Terry’s Fiction Works but for the Star Wars book/s.
Allanon was my first taste of a truly grey area character, when you are first introduced to him, you don’t know if he’s good or evil. You want to scream at the heroes of the story “Why are you trusting this guy? He seems mighty scary to me?” I wept for him when he died in Wishsong. After reading the Running with the Demon’s trilogy as well as origins, you begin to wonder if the odd child Allanon brought to your attention in First King is truly a Gypsy Morph.
Terry Brooks IMHO is one of the greatest writers of all time. I would give anything to have a few hours to sit with him and ask some of the questions that have been burning in the back of my mind for years now. Tho he answered some of them with Origins. As always, mad props to Shannara and Magic Kingdom for Sale. Books that fostered a love for reading in me at a very young age.
Cogline was a trainee Druid it said that he never became a full Druid although he took with him some of their knowledge.
I absolutely adore Walker Boh!! He has to be the most tragic druid being forced to become something he never wanted and then to fail to create a new Druid Council within his (extended) lifetime. I was heartbroken when I read the Jerle Shannara series.
Eagerly awaiting the latest installment in your new series Legends of Shannara!
Cogline survived it all. And for the most part, he didn’t have to compromise himself to accomplish his goals. Cogline was the most harmonious of the druids, in both magic and technology. Bremen, Allanon, and Walker Boh turned to Cogline when they could not complete a task on their own. Not that it was there fault, but let’s face it, when worse came to worse, when demons and furies were raining down on the Four Lands, it was Cogline who weathered them all.
Allanon will always be my favourite, the first one i ‘met’ when I discovered the Shannara books 🙂
Allanon, the dude is over 7 feet tall, probably the most intelligent, and also the most concerned with the races. Walker was too whiny, Cogline to removed, Bremen was cool but should have been more proactive. just my take.
I couldnt agree more–have to go back to the original. Walker was cool in his own way but too eclectic.
Cogline, one of the funniest characters to grace the pages of a book 🙂
Loved all the druids but for me Walker Boh stands out. In the series his story was the one I read first but they were all great.
Allanon is a great character. He was the driver behind great events but was human enough to question his motives, his abilities and his legacy.
Such a difficult question. Allanon was awesome (literally) and in my opinion the toughest out of the druids we’ve seen so far. Walker’s anger and reluctance to become a druid made him a great character to follow. I would have to go with Cogline over any of them though. He was the best of both worlds. He used science and magic to survive and was a lovable eccentric until the very end. He was very similar to Walker in his reluctance to follow the path of the druids, but in the end, he did what was right for the Four Lands.
Grianne gets an honorable mention, but was not that exciting to follow once she turned to the good side. She was more exciting as an antagonist.
While Allanon will always hold a special place in heart as the first Druid we all came to know, Grianne would have to be my favorite. Giving the unique story that has been told about her, going from bad to good. The depth that is given to her life is my favorite and some of my favorite stories in the Shannara world.
I almost said Grianne, but in the end I went with Tay Trefenwyd. Tay was the druid I connected with the most when I was reading the books. He gave up his true love to become a druid and in the end, he sacrificed his life for his friends and the survival of the world.
Again this is really late compared to the date of the poll, but I totally agree with you I thought it was terrible when he sacrificed himself, but I understood it. My second favourite has to be Grianne as well. I did a monologue on her. But Tay was the druid I thought was the best!
For me, I almost couldn’t decide. It came down to a choice between Walker Boh and Grianne. My choice ended up being Grianne, mainly because her story dealt with redemption. It is a hard thing to try to make up for wrongs committed, and I’ve always identified with her for that reason.
I could never really like Allanon, he seemed at times to have a haughty disdain for other characters (even if it was somewhat justified). And Cogline would probably be my third choice, if for no other reason than that I plan to be an irascible old coot myself when I grow old.
Out of all of the druids I would have to say that Allanon was the one that stood out in my mind as the best. He was the first one I read about and the one that all the others was held up to. I have to say that even though some of the others were intriguing none of them held an understanding of the magic the way Allanon did nor, in my mind, cared as much for the races as did Allanon. I have read a lot of fantasy books and to my knowledge I know of no other character that holds my attention the way that Allanon did.
So hard to choose! I liked all the Druids in General, but i guess Walker Boh stood out a bit more than the others. I liked Khyber and Allanon a lot to. I Guess it’d be safe to say i like all of them!
I chose Walker, hands down.
Allanon was an astoundingly powerful figure. Larger than life, forbidding. He commanded your attention. Loved him for that. He is unforgettable.
But as a tortured soul, I connected with Walker’s inner turmoil most.
plus, he was no weakling. Losing an arm was
depressing to witness, as it shattered his strengths. But he faced huge tasks nonetheless. From uhl belk, pe ell, and the shadowen to grianne and antrax itself, he had a longer road it seems to me than the others…and of course, he overcame the biggest opponent of all, Himself, the whole way through.
Of course, I loved them all, but Walker stuck with me most.
Probably a toss-up between Allanon and Cogline
Cogline was probably the most entertaining and Allanon was a walking powerhouse.
Walker Boh’s attitude really bugged me and Grianne never really seemed to fit into the role of Druid very well.
As my name gives me away, Allanon is and will alwasy be my absolute favorite. He had an insite into the 4 lands that was unmatched by an before or after him. He understood the need to be cautious with the magical gifts we are given, cause in the end, Ultimate power has the potential to corrupt us. He was the first druid I read about, and will always be my favorite.
Allanon is the epitome of what druids should be. The man was straight up gangsta. Who else stands alone to defend the rush of the entire demonic horde, spearheaded by a dragon? I mean, come on! And then to follow that up shortly with an air engagement with the Dagda Mor? There hasn’t been another druid who struck fear into the hearts of the netherworld creatures more than this man.
With all that said, my favorite druid would have to be Tay. He was more ‘human’ (yes, i know he’s an elf, but bare with me here) than all of the others, I think. Very down to earth (notice the elemental reference), noble in ways that readers could connect with, and last of all, he’s the only druid with a true love story. There aren’t many characters in the Shannara series where I genuinely felt pity for except Tay. He’s a class-act no matter how you look at it.
What about Ahren Ellessedil? I think he’d deserve a spot there! i voted for Grianne though, definitely the most complex and interesting of the Druids I think!
Just an inquiry to DeathShroud, but is Ahren Elessedil not the king of the Elves and father to Khyber Elessedil who was a Druid in Training?
Sorry. Ahren Elessedil is the uncle to Khyber Elessedil. My mistake.
Allanon but walker boh too
can i say that they are similar ?
Walker’s story is far more fleshed out than Allanon and we know a whole lot more about him, that’s why he is my favorite. What he goes through in the Voyage books is pretty heart breaking.
Allanon will always be my favorite. He has an air of confidence, power, and wisdom, whereas the rest are plagued with too many internal struggles. Walker Boh comes close, but no cigar. You knew that you could count on him, in much the same way as Gandalf or Dumbledore (for example).
Sometimes we need a champion! Using Knights of the Word as an example, Tom Logan was awesome, because he was way more bad@$$ than John Ross. He was a hard person, and you knew you could count on him.
Just my humble $0.02
I believe it is best to go with the underdog. That is Why I like Khyber Elessedil. Not to mention that he is an Elf and a member of the Royal Family. Go Elven Druids! It would be nice to see other elves on the Druid Counsel. Keep up the good work Terry and Shawn.
Pretty sure Khyber is a girl.
Yes. She is Ahren Elessedil’s niece. My mistake again. Sorry.
I remember reading Wish Song and loved how crazy Cogline was. Then when I opened Scions for the first time and there he was hundreds of years later and a druid, I was pretty stoked. The other druids are cool and played a huge role in the shaping of the Four Lands, but Cogline is my fave. Can’t wait to read more about him in the prequels one day (I assume?).
I agree with you Stephen. Allanon was awesome yes. But I chose Cogline as my Favorite. because as you said he was so crazy. he was like the Jack Lemmon of Grumpy Old Men to me, he made me laugh, cry, and he made me angry, an all around, character. I was also well excited when he made his second appearance.
walker was the first druid i read about in the elfstones of shannara in 1992. i was 12. he will always be the first in my heart and imagination. the standard to which i hold all druids,lol.
Uh… Walker didn’t appear until Heritage of Shannara. Elfstones was all Allanon…
I’m for Allanon but Walker gets my all time vote. Anti-hero that has no other recourse than to carry on the traditions of the Druids. In fact, a man torn between his hate for them and his respect. Walker all the way.
Walker gets my vote. Allanon was great, but we didn’t get to see too much of Allanon’s thoughts the way Terry let’s us into Walker’s mind and motivations. Walker grew with each novel he was in…. Allanon kinda stayed the same.
always Allanon, but I did like Walker Boh.Love Shannara since I found the Sword Of Shannara in the seventies.
Allanon, Grianne and Walker were the three I couldn’t decide between. Grianne went out because when she was the Ilse Witch she seemed like no one could stop her. Then add all of her Druid skills and she should have been the baddest mother on the planet. I know she wouldn’t use all her skills with the wishsong, but she still should have been more of a powerhouse.
Pretty much a toss up between Walker and Allanon. They both took very different roads, but did so much for the Four Lands. In the end I picked Walker because he didn’t want to do things anyone else’s way but his own. Also, instead of just using people (which he did), he also tried to help change them (Grianne and Bek). Could have gone either way though.
I woud have to say Tay,for some reason his character touched me and I was gutted when he died
I had to say Allanon. Personally, I associated the mysterious and magical essence of the druids to his presence. I still remember when he first emerged in Sword of Shannara and intimidated Shea Ohmsford right off the bat. I didn’t know if this was an enemy or friend and that feeling persisted throughout the entire novel.
Ever since I read that novel, his unknown knowledge catapulted Druids into a hierarchical leadership position and Allanon set the overall tone of what a Druid truly is and is capable of.
If it was possible, I would say that my second choice would have been Cogline due to his mysterious presence and knowledge as well. Very interesting poll and I’ve enjoyed reading other people’s thoughts on this as well. 😀
C’mon guys! Show Bremen some love!
Walker all the way… the guy only has one hand and he’s STILL just as good as any of the others; not to mention he’s got Rumor on his side and everybody loves the kitties
Common RISCA the warrior. The toughest dwarf ever. And the one that is unforgettable to me.
Come on! What about Brona, the Warlock Lord! He was so fun to hate!
Good point! How come only the “good” druids were on the list?
Isn’t voting for Walker almost the same as voting for Allanon being that Allanon basically “put himself” into Walker at the time of Walker’s transformation?
Allanon is my favourite Druid. The way Terry developed his character is really tremendous and will remain fresh in my memories.
Yeah this is a tough call. It is a tossup between the 4 major druid characters for me. Tay Trefenwyd just cause of his sacrifice (and I loved his interplay with Jerle Shanarra). Walker Boh because he struggled so not be the “kind” of druid Allanon was (secretive and deceptive) but ended up that way anyway. Grianne because of her character turnaround and her own sacrifice. Allanon, well because he was a “manly” druid (7+ ft tall, secretive, powerful and didn’t take crap from anyone).
Cogline. Didn’t he live to be over 1000 years old! Dude was hanging on by a thread just so he could summon Walker and the others for the quest of the Jerle Shannara!
I think we should be able to vote for a second favorite, or rank them and compile the overall totals. For me it was a very tough call to pick among Allanon, Tay, and Walker. I love them all for different reasons. It’s like picking a favorite child, you just can’t do it when they’re all special to you in their own way. In the end, Allanon won out, but only by a hair.
i agree with the first post here. All about Brona. When he reappearred in the high druid series, it was the only 3 pages worth reading. Allanon gets my vote, but only because of the lack of the warlock lord.
I’m surprised that Ahren Elessedil is not listed. I particularly enjoyed his character growing up from the young, almost-forgotten elven prince without much direction in Voyage of J. S., and was pleased to see he had become a Druid and was focused on training his niece to become one as well.
I must agree. Ahren did play an important part in “The Voyages of “The Jerle Shannara”. He was also a great mentor to his niece Khyber Elessedil, even if it was short lived due to those unhappy Druids involved in the coup to remove Grianne as High Druid.He should have been listed.
I went with Cogline only because he was a lovabe, grumpy old coot. Just like me or will be when I get old. He touched my emotions more than the others and seemed the most HUMAN of them all. Grianne would be my 2nd choice because of the sway of allegiance from evil to the good side.
Mmmm, hard question. My vote? Allanon.
The example, the alfa of all druids; better than his Master.
Maybe i could have voted Bremen, don’t know. Only if there should have been more of him in past books (but hope to read something of him and others in after-legend books though). But certainly I see on “older” Druids (I mean, of older councils) something different from last ones. Risca, Tay, Bremen, even Mareth (even if not whole druid), I see them better in their position.
Maybe their ages, their gathered knowledge, or the time where events take place, make them act differently from the newer ones (still young and quite inexperienced).
Really can’t wait for first council books, the creation of Paranor, read again familiar names (Galaphile, Brona, Bremen, Cogline and so on) and check what glorious people they could have been (well, maybe not Brona 🙂 )… I think last books (chronological) lack a bit of a strong, reference character.
Wow that is hard to answer because like you said they are all so different. I guess ultimately I would say Allannon. Walker and Cogline are definitely way up there for me too but I have to go with my first Allannon. I would have to say I would like to try and learn a bit more of Cogline. He peaks my interest too!
Allanon and Walker both captured my heart. Allanon was wise, strong and mysterious. I thought he would never die. When he died I was crying and trying to see to read at the same time. Allanon was steadfast always there when needed. Walker captured my heart over time not right away because of his attitude. But when he died I was just as crushed, maybe even more. I voted for Allanon because he was the first to capture my heart in the books. But I would have voted for them both if I was allowed to vote for 2. I believed I cried harder when Walker died. I haven’t read all of the books yet, I am now reading Tanequil. So I am learning more about Grianne. I don’t know about Tay or Risca, I don’t believe I read about them yet?
Tay and Risca are in The First King of Shannara.
I have to admit that Allanon is my favorite Druid and I actually cried when he died. I bought The Sword of Shannara because the book was thick. I was on an 8 hour trip to visit my Mother and needed something to keep me busy. Well, I couldn’t put the book down and now I also own all of Terry’s fantasy books, except for Star Wars.
I fell in love with Tay. A elementalist and as someone stated earlier more “human” than the others. The way he sacrificed himself for the two people he loved most in his life and for the four lands without hesitation was both wonderous and sad. He was a man caught between his love for a woman that was truely never his and his best friend. As a druid he had an amount of power that was never really explored to its fullest. His control of the elements was great and more seemingly controlled than other druids that would succeed him. When he was faced with using the black elfstone and what it would do to him he accepted it. Would he have eventually been stronger than Risca if the elfstone wouldnt have been wielded in his firm grasp. Could he have decimated the Warlocks minions alongside Bremen and stood almost as equals with the aged druid at the end? We will never know…..
I´m from germany and had my “first contact” with Allanon in 1978 or 79 (I cannot remember very well … yes I´m getting old) when a good friend of mine gave me the three books of the Sword of Shannara (yes … in germany Terry Brooks novels are always divided into three parts=may be money reasons?). I loved Allanon the first time he appeared: secretive, powerful and mysterious! This went on with the second part of the elfstones (yes again three books) and his brutal and melancholy death in the wishsong part (can you believe that: again three books!!!).
Actually I thought it has ended an Terry enjoyed his life in Hawai. But to my surprise there was another (trilogy? tetralogy? heptalogy or something different!) part in the late ´80. And I was intrigued about one character: Walker Boh! My all time favourite is the “The Druid of Shannara” where Terry did an awesome work on building this character: unsure about his magic inherited by Brin Ohmsford, his hate for druids and especially Allanon who was always reluctant in telling the truth to his allies e. g. Shea, Will and Brin and his own reluctance to accept the inevitable: to become a Druid himself!And what a great twist it was by loosing his right arm to become psychologically healed! Great! And the tragic of his death not able to fulfill what he desired most: a new Druid council consisting all races and lead through responsibility and the truth by sharing the knowledge of magic. The Dark Uncle (what a name!!!!!!!!) was the most tragic and the most developed character ever in Terry´s Shannara world! He is my all time favourite!!!!
My question is why isn’t the bearers of the black staff included? Seeing as they were the Druids of their time.
But they weren’t Druids. They were Knights. 😉
I’m not sure I can pick between walker and allanon. They were both such amazing characters for very different reasons. Allanon was the epitome of what a druid should be. He was the first druid I was exposed to in elfstones. I remember being so captivated with the mystery and power that surrounded his character that I had to keep reading to find out more about him. He was what was intended for the druids, the keeper of man but also the keeper of secrets. And the struggle involved to do what was best for man kind no matter what the cost.
Walker was such a tragic character, that was what made him so special. A self hating druid, if you will. Much more of a human element in walker than allanon. He represented the inner strife in people. The willingness to do what’s needed, over his own wants or morals. He was so complex in many many ways. I think most people could relate to him in one way or another. So to answer the question I think walker is my favorite or maybe its just a tie. How can I not choose the character who drew me into these amazing books that I have read and enjoyed my entire life. All I know is I will enjoy the debate for a long long time!
Allanon is my favourite. So powerful and so strong. He’s not only the first druid, but has leadership. He’s a milestone in the first three books of Shannara. In the Sword he’s a guide and in the Elfstones is a general. Moreover, he’s a storyteller, a voice that introduces us in the four lands. And he’s alone. So much responsibilities on his sholuder and he accepts it. He will always be my fellow during my travels
Allanon,born to be Druid !
Walker Boh for the win. Allannon rocks, but he is sort of the super hero, mythic figure of what the Druids are – like a George Washington or Abraham Lincoln of Druids. Walker Boh is more human – less of a Zeus or a Hercules and more of a “modern” type hero. Sure he’s way more awesome than your average Joe, but he has the weight of legacy to live up to, whereas Allanon, Bremen and Cogline were more like establishers of that legacy, of that makes sense. I was broken hearted when Walker died, but it was a beautiful death.