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Cornelius Clay is a firbolg living at the Blooming Grove and is the father of Caduceus Clay. Like the others in his family, he left the Grove to find a way to protect it from the advancing corruption of the surrounding Savalirwood. He traveled alongside his daughter Calliope, and the pair were petrified at the Whitedawn Lagoon, where they remained until restored in 836 PD by Caduceus. He returned to the Grove with the rest of his family.

As an NPC, he is played by Matthew Mercer.



Cornelius is a large older firbolg, similar in appearance to his son Caduceus Clay, though a bit thicker and portlier. His hair is gray and braided on either side of his face, dangling in tufts at the bottom decorated with a bit of jewelry. He is described as "a little more cartoony variation" of Caduceus' appearance.[1]


Cornelius is characterized as pleasant, warm, and friendly.[2][3] Though he is often easily confused in conversation, he is also wise, speaking well and patiently to others on death and making arrangements for burial rites.[4] He does not particularly pay attention to dates or the passing of time, and he is unaware of the existence of Rexxentrum.[5][6]

He is also supportive of his children and is excited to see that his son Caduceus has friends.[7] He encouraged Caduceus not to bear the mistakes that the rest of the family made. In the past, he took comfort in the fact that Caduceus was likely to remain home when their other children left, but he was sincerely supportive of Caduceus' growth from traveling into the world.[8]



Cornelius lived in the Blooming Grove in the Savalirwood of the Greying Wildlands with the rest of the Clay family. He, like all in the family, is a worshiper of Melora and spends his time administering burial by interment.[9] He married Constance Clay.[10]

He left the Grove between 827 PD and 829[11] with his daughter Calliope[1] to visit the temples at Kravaraad and the Whitedawn Lagoon in search of a way to stop the corruption of the Savalirwood from progressing into the Grove, the first pair of the family to attempt this journey. He found Constance and her sister Corrin petrified before becoming petrified by the gorgon himself at the Whitedawn Lagoon, where he remained for nine years.[12]

"Blessing in Disguise" (2x95) and "Family Shatters" (2x96)[]

Cornelius was found by Caduceus and the Mighty Nein in 836 PD. He was frozen attempting to help Calliope, who fell in the course of her petrification.[12] He was restored by Caduceus.[13] After a night at the sanctuary at the lagoon, he and the rest of the family were taken to Uthodurn to begin their journey home.[14] Before Caduceus left with the Nein to continue his journeys, Cornelius and Constance apologized to Caduceus for leaving and asked him not to take on the weight of the family's mistakes. They expressed that they previously took comfort in the fact that Caduceus was most likely of their children to stay home but they were happy about Caduceus' growth as he traveled into the world. They supported his decision to continue traveling and looked forward to hearing his stories upon his return home.[8]

"Worth Fighting For" (2x126)[]

Upon Caduceus' request, Jester Lavorre contacted Cornelius over Sending to inform him that he was coming home and to ask how things were at the Grove. Cornelius responded that things regarding the Savalirwood have been well but the family has been having strange dreams.[15]

"The Calm Before the Storm" (2x130) and "Into the Eye" (2x131)[]

Cornelius was home when the Nein arrived at the Grove, surprised to see Caduceus returned so soon.[16] He and the family spoke to Caduceus about their strange dreams and sense of unease, which they connected to Caduceus' journey north to fight Cognouza.[17] He was present to send the Nein on their way the next morning, and he sent them with Melora's blessing.[18]

"Fond Farewells" (2x141)[]

Cornelius was at the Grove when the Nein returned to it.[19]

Appearances and mentions[]


  1. 1.0 1.1 See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 1:33:14.
  2. See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 2:25:06.
  3. See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 2:26:35.
  4. See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 2:36:22.
  5. See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 2:22:54.
  6. See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 3:46:08.
  7. See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 2:29:17.
  8. 8.0 8.1 See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 4:10:38.
  9. See "Clay and Dust" (2x72) at 3:30:56.
  10. See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 3:54:50.
  11. Constance and Corrin Clay were the first pair to leave in 827 PD per "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 2:23:15, and Colton and Clarabelle Clay were the last to leave in 828 or 829 PD per the same episode at 3:33:11.
  12. 12.0 12.1 See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 3:38:06.
  13. See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 1:27:55.
  14. See "Family Shatters" (2x96) at 4:17:13.
  15. See "Worth Fighting For" (2x126) from 0:39:12 through 0:42:08.
  16. See "The Calm Before the Storm" (2x130) at 2:27:27.
  17. See "The Calm Before the Storm" (2x130) at 2:30:00.
  18. See "Into the Eye" (2x131) at 1:56:00.
  19. See "Fond Farewells" (2x141) at 0:18:29.