The Alessian Slave Rebellion was a widespread and organized slave revolt that occurred within the Ayleid land of Cyrod,[1] now Cyrodiil. Led by the Slave-Queen Alessia, the Nedes revolted against the Ayleids in a massive uprising. The rebellion began in the year 1E 242 and ended a year later in 1E 243 with the fall of the White-Gold Tower and the establishment of the Alessian Empire with Alessia becoming the first Empress. Though it was not the first victory of Men over Mer, it is often considered to be the most influential turning point in the Man-Mer power struggle, marking the point in which Man began to rise to dominance over Tamriel.[2][3][4] The Alessian Slave Rebellion, is often used as a symbol of the power of men and the consequences of trafficking with Daedra.[5]



During the early years of the First Era, the land that made up present day Cyrodiil was owned by a powerful race of Elves known as the Ayleids.[6] When coming across the scattered Nedic tribes of Tamriel the Ayleids would occasionally enslaved them, but in time, when certain Ayleids began pursuing the creation of an empire, the Nedic people began to be systematically enslaved in large numbers.[3][7] Though the Nedes would often fight back, their efforts were ultimately futile to stop their widespread enslavement. The Ayleids enslaved every human they came across, most notably those of Nibenay, and many of the Ayleids, being Daedra worshipers, were horribly cruel to their slaves. Most slaves were used for lifting stones, draining fields, and repairing temples and roads, but other less fortunate slaves were subject to brutal "art-tortures" to please their sadistic masters. Some Ayleid holds became known for the cruel ways they would display their torture victims, such as wailing wheels of Vindasel and the gut-gardens of Sercen. One particularly cruel monarch, known as the Fire-King Hadhuul, was known to force slaves to beget psychedelic drugs which gave the user unbearably tormenting visions, as well as set children aflame for sport.[7][8] The Ayleid's cruel treatment of their slaves undoubtedly played a large role in sparking the subsequent rebellion.[6][7] Some believe that the Ayleid's worship of Daedra created cultural weaknesses within their societies which played a large part in their eventual downfall. A noticeable decline in Ayleid unity occurred during the Narfinsel schism, in which the Barsaebic Ayleids were driven out of Cyrodiil by Daedra worshipers[5]

The rebellion beginsEdit

A young Nedic slave named Alessia from an unknown tribe near Sardavar Leed,[8] received divine inspiration to rebel against her Ayleid masters while atop the hill in which the city of Sancre Tor would later be founded.[9] While praying to the gods, Kyne sent the demi-god, Morihaus, and the Shezarrine, Pelinal Whitestrake, to aid Alessia in her plans to free the slaves of Cyrod,[10] and these three individuals would lead the rebellion which would officially begin in the year 1E 242.[4] Nordic victories against the Mer of the North inspired many slaves to join Alessia in her rebellion,[2][3] and large numbers of mercenaries from Skyrim, and the then Direnni Hegemony joined the rebellion with promises of rich lands and trade concessions.[9] One of Alessia's most influential allies were the Ayleid lords from lands where the Aedra were worshiped, rather than the Daedra.[7][11] Alessia's slave rebellion grew to large numbers, but it wasn't able to effectively defeat the Ayleid's military might until the armies of the Nordic Empire of Skyrim intervened.[4][11] Legend tells, that the Ayleids reliance on hordes of summoned Daedra and undead, was denied to them once Alessia had made her covenant with Akatosh.[6] According to some, the Ayleids dealings with Daedra created bickering and infighting amongst their people which created exploitable cracks in their societies that the rebellion would take advantage of.[5]

The Song of PelinalEdit

The rebellion's strategy for defeating the Ayleids was rather simple, while Morihaus' and Alessia's armies fought the Ayleid armies in the fields of battle, Pelinal would kill their sorcerer-kings in single combat. One by one, Pelinal slayed the Ayleid lords in their holdings. First he killed Haromir of Copper and Tea and screamed praise to the future Emperor Reman, a man who no one knew yet. He would later slay Gordhaur the Shaper at Ninendava and the Fire-King Hadhuul at Ceyatatar. In his first spout of madness, which was caused by the death of his friend Huna, Pelinal wrought complete destruction all the way from Narlemae to Celediil. In their fear of Pelinal, the Ayleid kings turned to Meridia for help and appointed the demi-god Umaril the Unfeathered as their champion.[1] Pelinal drove the Ayleid armies past the Niben and claimed the eastern lands for the Alessian Rebellion.[12] It is even said that Pelinal's advance was so swift, that he accidentally found himself in Elsweyr, slaying a profuse amount of Khajiit before realizing that they were not actually elves.[13][14] After their losses at Vahtache, and the Bridge of Heldon, as well as the First Pogrom, the Ayleids began retreating back to the White-Gold Tower. While the armies of Alessia, Morihaus, and the Nords were wary of an attack on the Tower, Pelinal thought them cowards and went to conquer the citadel alone.[12] When he entered the Tower, Pelinal killed every Ayleid he came across and challenged Umaril to a duel, defeating him. However, after Pelinal taunted Umaril and the remaining Ayleid kings, the kings were driven into a frenzy and cut him into eights. The next day, Morihaus stormed the White-Gold Tower and hunted down the surviving Ayleid kings who remained. Morihaus found the head of Pelinal which was left by the sorcerer-kings to prove that they had killed him, the two spoke until Pelinal died.[15]


After the White-Gold Tower was captured in 1E 243, Alessia declared herself the first Empress of Cyrodiil and the Alessian Empire was formed.[3][4] The last lands to be liberated by the Alessian army were in the southern territories of Cyrodiil, most notably the lands in which the city of Bravil would later be founded.[16] Many Ayleids, fearing the rule of men, fled Cyrodiil and settled in Valenwood.[UL 1] However, contrary to the belief of some, Alessia and her heirs did not punish the remaining Ayleids in any harsh way. The Ayleid lords were still allowed to hold their lands as long as they swore fealty to the Empire and submitted to its laws. Slavery and Daedra worship were outlawed throughout the Empire, and all Ayleids were forced to adopt the new Eight Divines religion. While many Ayleids felt humiliated by the changes in their way of life, and the lack of slaves hurt their economy, they were not oppressed in any severe manner. It wouldn't be until the Alessian Order gained control of Cyrodiil in 1E 361 that Ayleids would begin to be abused by the Empire.[11][17]


Notice: The following are unlicensed references. They are not copyrighted by a ZeniMax Media company, but can still be considered part of The Elder Scrolls lore and are included for completeness.
  1. Elder Scrolls Online Lore Answers
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