Trance. Elves don’t need to sleep. Instead, they meditate deeply, remaining semiconscious, for 4 hours a day. (The Common word for such meditation is “trance.”) While meditating, you can dream after a fashion; such dreams are actually mental exercises that have become reflexive through years of practice. After resting in this way, you gain the same benefit that a human does from 8 hours of sleep.

What does "dream after a fashion" mean? Could someone explain?


1 Answer 1


It doesn't mean anything special in D&D, but is rather just an English expression.

In this context, "dream after a fashion" is an idiom meaning that you can "kind of" dream. It's not real dreaming the way other races experience dreams, rather it's something elves can do that mimics dreaming. This is why it's followed by the phrasing "such dreams are actually mental exercises" - they're not dreams the way we think of them, rather the elvish version of dreaming.

As described, they basically do a kind of meditating via mental exercises that might look like dreaming to an outside observer. The elf in question goes quiet and still, as noted by the use of "semiconscious", and is likely unresponsive to outside stimulus until the four hours are up.

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    \$\begingroup\$ There is a bit of special D&D stuff here: dreaming is important for certain spells and abilities and this language helps make it clear that you do qualify to be affected by that stuff, even though you don't count as asleep while you're doing it. \$\endgroup\$ Mar 28, 2018 at 23:26

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