The Mede Dynasty is the second ruling family of the Third Tamrielic Empire, a family of Colovians who ended the Stormcrown Interregnum in the early Fourth Era. The Mede Dynasty saw the fracturing of much of the Empire, which began with the secession of the Summerset Isles and the establishment of the Aldmeri Dominion.
The murder of Chancellor Ocato in the years following the Oblivion Crisis began the Stormcrown Interregnum, with various factions vying for the Ruby Throne. However, the Elder Council and the administrative structure of the Third Empire remained intact.
Seven years after Ocato's murder, a Nibenese witch-warrior known as Thules the Gibbering was ruling in Cyrodiil. Titus Mede overthrew him and, with the help of Minister Hierem satisfied the Elder Council that he was, if not a legitimate ruler then preferable to any alternative.
Titus Mede I (~4E 17–?)
Titus Mede I became emperor in or around 4E 17. Despite his efforts to secure the empire following the Stormcrown Interregnum, Titus Mede I's reign saw its continued disintegration. In particular, the nation of Alinor was proclaimed, following the overthrow of the old Summerset Isles royal family. Following Alinor's annexation of Valenwood in 4E 29, it severed all ties with the Empire.
Titus' reign also saw the creation of Umbriel, and a potential attack on the Imperial City from it. The Empire did little to respond officially, although Titus' son Prince Attrebus was involved in its destruction. During this period Hierem attempted to form an alliance with the An-Xileel against the Thalmor. Whether he succeeded in this is unknown.
There is no record of the year of Titus Mede I's death. We can only assume that his line continued through Attrebus, potentially with Annaïg Hoïnart, with whom he was romantically involved during Umbriel's rise and destruction.
Unknown rulership (?–4E 168)
Following the death of Titus Mede, a period of unknown rulers began, although presumably his son Attrebus was his immediate successor. During this time the Empire continued to disintegrate, with the Void Nights bringing chaos across Tamriel, including the assassination of at least one Jarl of Skyrim. Its most notable effect however was to cause panic among the Khajiit, who dubbed the Thalmor saviors after they claimed to have instigated their return in 4E 100. 15 years later, a coup in the province dissolved the Elsweyr Confederacy and recreated the ancient kingdoms of Anequina and Pelletine as client states of the Aldmeri Dominion.
Titus Mede II (4E 168–4E 201?)
- Main article: Titus Mede II
Titus Mede ascended the Ruby Throne in 4E 168, in unknown circumstances.
The Great War (4E 171–4E 176)
- Main article: Great War
The Aldmeri Dominion issued an ultimatum to the Empire at the Imperial City in 4E 171 demanding that the Blades be disbanded, that the Empire cede portions of Hammerfell to the Dominion and outlaw the worship of Talos. Mede rejected this, leading to a declaration of war.
Following the Dominion's initial successes, Titus Mede made the decision to abandon the Imperial City and join up with reinforcements from High Rock, which were then divided and used to destroy the Thalmor army sacking the Imperial City. Titus is said to have led the assault himself, wielding the artifact sword Goldbrand, although some claim that this was done by another Hero, who has been forgotten to history. Titus then agreed to most of the terms of the treaty that he originally rejected, which became known as the White-Gold Concordat.
Thirty years after the Great War, the Empire had achieved peace with the Dominion. However, many were not satisfied by the terms of the White-Gold Concordat, mainly Skyrim due to the outlaw of Talos worship.
The Markarth Incident
- Main article: Markarth Incident
In 4E 174, Markarth and the Reach was subjected to what is known today as the Forsworn Uprising. While the Empire was beset by the Aldmeri Dominion in the Great War, the native Breton people of the Reach, called the Reachmen, took this opportunity to seize control of the city. This was only possible as the Imperial Legionnaires stationed in Markarth were recalled to fight, leaving the city vulnerable. The Jarl of the Reach could not quell the uprising and was forced to flee his city. The rebellion was successful, and the Reachmen ruled over Markarth and the Reach as an independent kingdom from Skyrim from 4E 174—176. During this time, the kingdom was alleged to be relatively peaceful. One author, who may or may not be credible, claimed the Reachmen ruled their lands fairly and were making overtures to be recognized by the Empire as a legitimate kingdom. In 4E 175, the Great War ended with the Empire signing the White-Gold Concordat. During this time, Jarl Hrolfdir, took it upon himself to seek help from Ulfric Stormcloak in ousting the Reachmen invaders. He promised Ulfric that if he re-took the Reach, then Hrolfdir as Jarl would allow free worship of Talos - an act that was recently outlawed at the end of the war. Ulfric agreed and marched his militia to the gates of Markarth and ruthlessly retook the city using the power of the Thu'um.
After reclaiming Markarth, Ulfric was brutal to the Reachmen usurpers and executed any remaining insurrectionists in the city except for Nepos the Nose, Madanach, and a handful of others. Jarl Hrolfdir was said to have executed children of alleged Forsworn sympathizers and unjustly imprisoned those accused of colluding with Forsworn usurpers.
When the Imperial Legion arrived to restore the rule of law, Ulfric allegedly refused them entry into the city until they also agreed to the free worship of Talos that was promised. An Imperial author claimed the Empire had no choice but to grant Ulfric and his men their free worship because chaos and violence was supposedly running through the streets of Markarth and they believed Ulfric and his militia were using it to coerce them. The Thalmor discovered this blatant violation of the White-Gold Concordat and pressured the Empire to arrest Ulfric and his militia or end the peace agreement with the Aldmeri Dominion. Eventually, the Empire and Hrolfdir rescinded upon the agreement and arrested Ulfric and his militia. This betrayal left Ulfric bitter towards the Empire and is considered to be the initial conception of the Stormcloak Rebellion.
Skyrim Civil War
- Main article: Skyrim Civil War
In the aftermath of the Markarth Incident, Ulfric returned to Windhelm and became Jarl after his father died during his incarceration with the Thalmor. In 4E 201, after years of brewing resentment for what he and his followers considered the Empire's betrayal of Skyrim, Ulfric challenged High King Torygg to a duel. After Torygg's death, Ulfric fled to Windhelm. Some time after this event, the Imperial Legion managed to lure Ulfric into a trap in order to capture him. The trap worked and Ulfric surrendered himself without a fight. General Tullius ordered Ulfric to be sent to Cyrodiil to face trial, but there was a change of plan and instead it was decreed that Ulfric be publicly executed in Helgen. Ulfric was saved by the timely arrival of the Dragon Alduin who destroyed Helgen. Ulfric and his men escaped and returned to Windhelm to continue the Civil War, which was unresolved as of 4E 201.
- Rising Threat, Vol. IV – Lathenil of Sunhold
- The Great War – Legate Justianus Quintius
- An Elder Scrolls Novel: Lord of Souls
- The Rise and Fall of the Blades
- Of Crossed Daggers: The History of Riften - Dwennon Wyndell
- Events of The Elder Scrolls: Legends
- Events of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
- Dialogue with Nepos the Nose
- Dialogue with Braig
- The Bear of Markarth – Arrianus Arius
- Dialogue with Jarl Igmund