Jill (a.k.a. Gilyan of Bobyr)
Appeared in
Other incarnations
Date of birth
Family & Relationships
Rhodry (1062)
Deverry Cycle character

Jill is one of the three central characters (along with Nevyn and Rhodry) of the Deverry Cycle. In the course of the fifteen novels that make up the Cycle, Jill is reincarnated numerous times. Late in the Cycle we discover that her real name is Gilyan, but she prefers Jill, which is described as "a bondwoman's name." She claims some kinship with the folk of the Rhiddaer.


We first meet Jill as a little dirty-faced girl living in the Cerrgonney hill village of Bobyr. She is the daughter of Seryan and Cullyn of Cerrmor, the famed "greatest swordsman in all Deverry." Jill has blonde hair (which she takes to wearing short) and blue eyes, much like her father's. As she matures she is described as "pretty" and "beautiful" and, despite her predilection for men's clothing, extremely feminine. She is also relatively tall.


Jill is very self-reliant, stubborn, independent, and strong-minded. When only a small child she is taken onto the Long Road by her father Cullyn of Cerrmor who teaches her swordcraft, at which she becomes quite adept, She becomes quite used to being challenged by men, and often humiliates them in mock combats. She also learns the fine art of tavern brawling, and can defend herself with her fists quite nicely. As a young woman her chief dream is battle glory, and she admires the Time of Troubles heroine Gweniver (of whom she is a later incarnation).

She has a strong inherent talent for magic, initially latent, and manifesting only as an ability to see the wildfolk, she becomes a powerful dweomermaster later in life.

In the booksEdit

As a child, she followed her father on his wanderings, and learned swordcraft from him. Jill becomes Rhodry's lover, following him into exile. After being separated from Rhodry, Jill is kidnapped by Peryn, who ensorcels her to prevent her from running away or refusing him. She is rescued from Peryn by Salamander. Because the magic Peryn had been using on her was causing her latent magical talent to manifest itself, she starts studying dweomer under Salamander, in order to avoid being driven mad by supernatural forces.

The two sail to Bardek in order to rescue Rhodry from slavery, but upon return to Deverry, she leaves Rhodry behind to become Nevyn's apprentice, and became a powerful sorceress. When the Horsekin laid siege to Cengarn, Jill assisted in the city's defense, and slew the mad Guardian Alshandra-- though she died in the act.

Featured in the following books: Daggerspell, Darkspell, The Bristling Wood, The Dragon Revenant, A Time of Exile, A Time of Omens, Days of Blood and Fire and Days of Air and Darkness

Family and relationshipsEdit

Cullyn of CerrmorEdit

Cullyn is Jill's father and they have a very close bond, forged by years together on the Long Road. In Jill's case, this is simply filial love, though Cullyn has a degree of possessiveness towards Jill that he steps away from in favor of Rhodry.


Nevyn and Jill have a teacher/student relationship. Though Nevyn is in love with the spirit that resides within Jill, he had stepped away from romantic intentions towards her in a previous incarnation. There is made a song about this relationship called Jillian (I'd Give My Heart).


While Jill is initially smitten with Rhodry, and does come to love him, she eventually abandons him, both to allow him to have a normal life without her, and to study dweomer.

Gray gnomeEdit

Jill's sidekick is a gray gnome. He has spindly legs and a long nose.

Other incarnationsEdit

Hwilli, Brangwen, Lyssa, Gweniver, Branoic, Morwen, Branna

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