Wrothgar, also known as Wrothgaria or the Wrothgarian Mountains, is the rugged mountain region of High Rock. It consists of the northeastern mountains of the province and makes up half of the Western Reach alongside the region of Bangkorai. Wrothgar has been the traditional home of the Orsimer dating back to the First Era, and has remained that way since.
- 1 By game
- 2 Description
- 3 History
- 3.1 First Era
- 3.2 Second Era
- 3.2.1 Ranser's gambit & the Orcish intervention
- 3.2.2 Invitation to Orsinium; Kurog's ambition
- 3.2.3 Breaking the Winterborn's Hold; Siege of Frostbreak Fortress
- 3.2.4 Devoters of Malacath; raid of the Temple of Ire
- 3.2.5 Trouble at Fharun; rescue mission for Bazrag
- 3.2.6 Plot against the Malacath Devout; Paragon's Remembrance
- 3.2.7 Kurog's gambit; Duel atop of Scarp Keep
- 3.2.8 Long live King Kurog; reign of Bazrag gro-Fharun
- 3.2.9 The Breton expansion into Wrothgar & the Western Reach
- 3.3 Third Era
- 3.4 Fourth Era
- 4 Locations
- 5 Gallery
- 6 Trivia
- 7 Appearances
- 8 Notes
- 9 References
The area of Western Wrothgar is a boreal forest where the first Orcish Kingdom was established. Western Wrothgar is the closest to the Bretony heartlands of Stormhaven and as a result, the region reflects that environment and the gradual snow climate of Wrothgar. Several landmarks exist in the region, such as Honor's Rest, the burial grounds of Gaiden Shinji and Baloth Bloodtusk. The westernmost valley of Wrothgar contains Paragon's Remembrance, which is named after Malacath, the Daedric Prince of Oaths. The extensive ruins of First Orsinium are nestled deep within the northwestern mountains.
The tundra grasslands of Central Wrothgar are the home of a number of Orsimer tribes. The Morkul Clan are smithies by heart, pioneering the Orcish weaponry and armor seen to this day.[source?] The Tumnosh Clan are miners by heart; the Graystone Quarry along the Wrothgarian border is where the Kingdoms of Orsinium have gained their stones, to build their fortress and strongholds.[source?] Graystone Quarry is the most successful mine, but there have been several other mineshafts located in Central Wrothgar such as the Argent Mine.[source?] The Morkul Stronghold has a fairly active port that is located in between Northpoint and Jehanna, two prominent harbors in the Sea of Ghosts.
Eastern Wrothgar is the largest region in the mountain range, housing a variety of Orcish architecture and Breton strongholds. It is the home to a wide variety of fauna and the Shatul Clan of Orsimer, a nomadic tribe of Orcs that have a specialty in agriculture and farming.[source?] The Second Kingdom of Orsinium was located on the western edge of the region while the twin Breton kingdoms of Farrun and Jehanna were situated on the northern coast near the border. The Druadach Mountains are located to the east. Sorrow is one of the largest mountains in the Greater Reach, overlooking the entire region.
The Orsinium Area is a region claimed by the Orsimer of the Wrothgarian Mountains, under the leadership of Gortwog gro-Nagorm. Nestled in between the Kingdom of Wayrest and the Wrothgarian Mountains, the area was originally claimed by Lord Bowyn, but Gortwog earned the region in a duel and established the Third Orsinium in the center. Minor settlements such as Midpath Hill and Ripwold also occupy the area, even though the Orcs primarily inhabit the region. The religious temples and knightly orders of the Iliac Bay have no presence in the Orsinium Area. The Third Kingdom of Orsinium expanded their borders with the Warp in the West, encompassing Wrothgaria and the Dragontail Mountains.
The Echatere is the most commonly used animal throughout the Wrothgarian Mountains.[source?] The Breton Kingdoms of High Rock have utilized horses and cows in their agricultural pursuits, but the denizens of Wrothgar have used the Echatere for multiple purposes, making them more versatile than the farm animals seen throughout Cyrodiil or High Rock. The Echatere is a truly unique creature; their limbs are not actual feet or hooves, but instead resemble spider legs made of the same material as their horns. Their fur and overall body resemble a bison or an ox, yet their head resembles an elk with their horns twice the proportions of a common Elk. The Shatul Clan of Orsimer have utilized the creature and are known for taming the creatures.[source?]
Harpies are a common sight in the hills of the Iliac Bay, from faraway Daenia to the distant lands of Tigonus. Harpies can appear in flocks throughout the land and can be relentless when an intruder enters their nest. Harpies resemble petite women with the features of a bird, including talons and red feathers. Creatures with such features hold some sort of relationship with the Reachmen of the Greater Reach.[source?] The Winterborn Clan, for example, have been known to train Harpies and work with Hagravens.[source?] When the Winterborn had control of Frostbreak Fortress, the Harpies had built nests on the highest towers of the stronghold.[source?] Some Harpies have lived in some ruins like the great caverns of Old Orsinium and the icy caverns in Coldperch Cavern.[source?] The Harpy has their own little caste system with the leader being called the Harpy Matriarch.[source?] These type of Harpies are larger and have black feathers, separating them from the rest.
The common spider is found throughout the continent of Tamriel, from the perilous chasms of Auridon to the rugged hills of Stonefalls, and Wrothgar is no exception. Spiders are found mainly in the Central Wrothgar plains but can be found all over the mountain range, residing Old Orsinium or even Zthenganaz. Large spiders come in winter white or jet black, depending on the area. When necessary, spiders may feast on the corpse of another spider or anything that is dead and rotting. The Riekrs of Wrothgar have used Spiders as battle pets, just like other types of Goblin-kin. Their webs are thick and can ensnare even the largest creatures like the Echatere or even the toughest of Orcs.[source?]
Giants and mammoths
The northern lands of Tamriel have been the home of the giants for many years, living as far as the Western Reach to the island of Solstheim. Giants are a nomadic tribal-folk with both human and Elven traits. The Mammoth has been a versatile creature for the giants, who craft special mammoth cheeses from their milk and take their hide, fashioning it into the clothing they sport. The typical giant camp is a large firepit larger than any person. Giants have also used the bones of the Mammoth as weapons, fashioning them into clubs and spears. Giants are one of the few creatures of the wilderness to have their own language, Giantish. Wrothgarian Giants are unique as compared to the rest of the giants found throughout The Reach and Eastmarch. They have bluish skin and utilize both the Mammoth and the Echatere. They have an affinity for Reach Frost magic.
The Chub Loon is a flightless, stubby bird found throughout the shores of Eastern Wrothgar, near the city of Fharun. Every morning, the Chub Loons can be observed honking vigorously on the cost of the Sea of Ghosts. Records of the Chub Loon had not appeared until sometime before 2E 583. The first record on Chub Loons noted that they disrupted the horker habitat in the area and dug into their food supply. However, Chub Loons are simple-minded and do not realize a threat when there is one, making them easy prey. Not only do they make good meals, but their skin can be made into a hat.
Wrothgar is a diverse geographical region; the Central grasslands are very different than the areas bordering them. Beginning with Western Wrothgar, the region is a lightly-forested subarctic environment bordering the forests of Alcaire and the hills of North Kambria. The locals have used the tall pine trees and the wide hemlock trees that inhabit the area for their homes and equipment. Sedge Grass and Echatere Moss grow in the area, both of which are used in Orcish Cuisine. Central Wrothgar lacks the abundant flora found elsewhere in Wrothgar. The dry grasslands make the area less useful for agriculture, so the Orsimer in the area mine the earth, as seen in the Tumnosh Clanhold and the Graystone Quarry. Despite this, underneath the area is lush greenery seen throughout the Western Reach underground. The cold air is likely the reason why the surface grass is drier than the grass underneath. Eastern Wrothgar is the most abundant in flora, as well as taking up most of the whole region in land area. The Shatul Clan of Orsimer are known for their agricultural skills and have taken refuge in Eastern Wrothgar. Various vegetables grow here, including wrathberries and glacial tomatoes.[source?]
The Orsimer's origins are tied to the Daedric Prince of Sworn Oaths and the Bloody Curse, Malacath. And so, their way of life revolves around Malacath's ideas and sphere of influence, the Sworn Oath. The Orcish Strongholds of Tamriel follow the Code of Malacath, a set of rules that the Orsimer have followed for many years. The Code is straightforward; it prohibits theft, murder, and needless assault. Most Orcish strongholds do not have a prison, except for the city of Fharun, which has one of the most infamous ones in the province of High Rock. Instead of imprisonment, those who violate the Code of Malacath have to pay the "blood price," which requires that the offender bleed enough for the victim to be satisfied. However, the offender can also pay out of it.
The Code has the chief be at the top of the social hierarchy, operating out of a special longhouse. The women of the stronghold are made into wives for the chieftain, each serving a different purpose, such as the Shield-Wife or the Hearth-Wife. The only women exempt from this are the wise women, who are given the position of a shaman and perform spiritual healing. Severe situations are solved with violent fights, but those who do not get along with the chief are banished, forced to live in the cities of the outside world. When the time comes, a new Orcish warrior could challenge the chieftain and become the next leader of the clan. But at the end of the battle, one of them will die amidst the conflict.
The Orsimer are among the most religious people in Tamriel. Each of the Orcish clans has a rich and vibrant culture, but often disagree on even the most basic concepts. The Orcs believe in an afterlife called the Ashen Forge, comparable to Sovngarde for the Nordic peoples; Orsimer who prove themselves to Malacath may be graced with immortality and an abundance of food in the Ashen Forge. The forge is the central stronghold in Malacath's Plane of Oblivion, the Ashpit. Every Orc is a chieftain, every chieftain has thousands of wives, and each wife has thousands of slaves. The Ashen Forge fills the endless space of the Ashpit, with Malacath's smithy, iron towers, and steel bastions present as well.
The Kingdom of Orsinium has been the center of Orcish civilization across eras. Two of the most well-known iterations of Orsinium are the Second Orsinium and Nova Orsinium, created by Kurog gro-Bagrakh and Gortwog gro-Nagorm, respectively. The first form of controversy in each of their cities was the established religion of Trinimac. The Elven deity of Trinimac was said to be the original form of Malacath before he was devoured by Boethiah. In Orcish society, there are two forms of religion, the Cult of Malacath, and the Cult of Trinimac. To outsiders, the religious worship of Malacath in Orcish society appears barbaric and unruly. The Orsimer see themselves as a betrayed people, and are taught to stand strong, yet alone. However, while the Cult of Trinimac still personifies the warrior-heart, many of its ideals are based in civility and unity instead. The Second Orsinium had established the Temple of Ire as a place of worship for Trinimac. The forced religion of Trinimac was one of the main focal points of Kurog's demise.
Torug gro-Igron's ambition; dreams of an Orsinium
In the First Era, the Orsimer traditionally lived in tribes scattered across the Greater Reach and the Dragontail Mountains, under their own sovereignties that ignore the strifes of other chiefdoms. The Orsimer constantly had to deal with incursions from their neighbors by the Bjoulsae River and the Iliac Bay. Torug gro-Igron of Wrothgaria once had a dream of a united kingdom of Orsimer, under his reign. As time went on, Torug gro-Igron created the city of Orsinium, on the border of Wrothgar and Rivenspire. Orcs from all over Tamriel traveled to the Wrothgarian Mountains to witness this marvel of Orcish technology and to coexist with the tribes of the neighboring regions.
There is a severe lack of records indicating the state of Orsinium. Many people believed that the First Orsinium followed a list of savage rules and used violence to establish their dominance across the Bjoulsae River, which was somewhat true. Orcish historians claimed that Orsinium was a utopia, both peaceful and progressive. With combined clans pitching into the city, such as the master smithies of Morkul Clan and the agriculture experts of Shatul Clan, it is fair to assume that Orsinium was one of the fastest-growing kingdoms. The Orcs of Orsinium have led raids throughout the Bjoulsae River called the Bjoulsae Raids, which was the collaboration of Clan Bagrakh and Clan Igron. These raids had attacked several Breton settlements, such as the fishing village of Wayrest, prompting political figures to take action.
The Siege of Orsinium; Joile's conquest over Wrothgar
King Joile was the leader of the Kingdom of Daggerfall during the Bjoulsae Raids and the rising power of Orsinium. Joile felt that this Kingdom of Orcs needed to be dealt with, and sought the aid of the Order of Diagna, under the command of Gaiden Shinji. In 1E 948, Joile sent a letter to Gaiden Shinji proposing a joint attack on Orsinium along with the Kingdom of Sentinel, where the Order was based. It was during this time that the city of Orsinium had fallen under the rule of Golkarr. Golkarr rallied his forces as the Siege of Orsinium began in 1E 950. The conflict transcended the Kingdom of Orsinium, attacking neighboring strongholds such as Fharun at the Battle of Fharun Pass. The conflict lasted for thirty years, and it took ten for the invading force to break down the walls of Orsinium. In need of help, Golkarr fled to the Grudgement Hall in Scarp Keep, where he prayed for Mauloch. It was there that Gaiden Shinji and King Joile killed Golkarr, ending the Siege of Orsinium.
King Joile had planned to betray the Redguards as a part of his grand scheme of conquest. In the aftermath of the Siege, the armies of Sentinel were weak and retreated into the Alik'r Desert, bypassing Bangkorai Pass. Joile's Army cornered the Redguard army at the pass, planning to destroy them before reaching Sentinel. Under the administration of Makela Leki, the Redguards fought back against Joile's forces, defeating both the army and Joile himself. Sentinel was saved by the Ansei warrior Makela Leki.
The duel of iron might; Gaiden Shinji & Baloth Bloodtusk
The Siege of Orsinium was one of the largest conflicts in Tamriel. Many warriors from the faraway Kingdom of Daggerfall to the depths of the Western Reach fought in the conflict, either with the Orsimer of Wrothgar or the invaders of the Iliac Bay. Two such warriors who participated were Gaiden Shinji, the leader of the Order of Diagna, and Baloth Bloodtusk, the leader of the Savage Sons, one of the strongest warrior groups in Wrothgar. Shinji and his group worked alongside Lord Trystan, the leader of the Knights of the Dragon, both of whom had acknowledged each other's talent in combat. Baloth Bloodtusk was one of the most respected warriors of Wrothgar and remained neutral in the Siege of Orsinium. However, the Savage Sons were manipulated by fake orders from King Golkarr to participate in the battle.
On the outskirts of Orsinium, the two factions fought one another, struggling in vain for ultimate supremacy. Gaiden Shinji and Baloth Bloodtusk dueled to the death, as their allies watched in awe. Lord Trystan knew of the sacred pact that dueling had held for years, as well as the Orcish Berserks of the Savage Sons. Joile had also hired Mercedene, the Beast of the Reach, to aid him in his conquest. Mercedene manipulated Bloodtusk into partaking in the conflict so that she could eliminate the two threats to her master's conquest. In the middle of the battle, Mercedene ordered her men to fire upon the combatants, killing them both. This act of treason caused the conflict to continue, leaving Trystan furious towards Mercedene. She was stopped by a Knight of the Dragon, and the two warriors were laid to rest on the same spot that they had faced each other. The art that had raised them to such godly heights was lost, their technique vanished.
- Main article: Wrothgar (Online)
Ranser's gambit & the Orcish intervention
In 2E 563, the Daggerfall Covenant was formed between the kingdoms of High Rock and Hammerfell. High King Emeric was in pursuit of a bride to rule alongside him in the coming years. One of Emeric's original choices was Rayelle, the Princess of Shornhelm, the daughter of King Ranser Branquette, who was the leader of Rivenspire. Ranser Branquette had claimed the throne of Rivenspire after several interactions with House Montclair and his brother, Phylgeon Montclair. Emeric rejected Rayelle in exchange for Maraya, the daughter of King Fahara'jad, the leader of Sentinel and Hammerfell. This was done to further solidify the alliance with their neighboring province. This enraged Ranser, prompting him to distance himself from the High King, failing to attend Emeric's marriage later that year. With the Great Houses of Rivenspire, Ranser amassed an army from Oldgate to Northpoint in an attempt to destroy the Daggerfall Covenant and Emeric.
King Ranser's War began on Last Seed of 2E 566, when Ranser's forces besieged the city of Wayrest. The Siege of Wayrest eventually ended in the Covenant's favor and the war advanced into Rivenspire. The last line of defense for Ranser's Army was at Markwasten Moor, located east of Shornhelm. Ranser's forces managed to hold their own against the Covenant, so special procedures were necessary to defeat them. Emeric commissioned the help of the Orsimer of Wrothgar, who were under the leadership of Kurog gro-Bagrakh. He offered Kurog a haven in the Wrothgarian Mountains, allowing his people to live freely within the Covenant, in exchange for his help in Ranser's War. Bagrakh rallied his forces and engaged in combat against Ranser's troops in Markwasten Moor. Ranser was desperate, calling upon the undead to fight against these forces. He was surprised when the Orsimer attacked, and many of his men wanted this conflict to end but were hesitant to express their misgivings. General Dathieu took the initiative and slew Ranser in battle, ending the conflict. Kurog and the Orsimer of Wrothgar had officially joined the Daggerfall Covenant.
Invitation to Orsinium; Kurog's ambition
The second incarnation of Orsinium was constructed sometime after the Ranser Civil War, under the leadership of King Kurog gro-Orsinium. Kurog, along with Torug gro-Igron, had dreams of stronger Orsimer Kingdom, one that would rival the likes of High Rock or Skyrim. Kurog gro-Orsinium saw this through Orsinium, but his mighty fortress had yet to be completed. Under the guidance of his mother, Forge-Mother Alga, Kurog called upon the warriors of Tamriel to establish his rules throughout Wrothgar and the Western Reach. Kurog felt that the old traditions of the Orcs were no longer a viable option in this day and age. Kurog established the Temple of Ire, which worships the deity Trinimac rather than Malacath, the Daedric Prince of Oaths. The Orcish clans of Wrothgar had worshipped Malacath throughout the eras; one of Kurog's closest friends, Bazrag gro-Fharun, was devout to Malacath, and opposed the actions of the King. All of the other Orcish clans felt similarly, so Kurog sought out a way to earn their trust.
Breaking the Winterborn's Hold; Siege of Frostbreak Fortress
The Winterborn Clan of Reachmen were one of the rising threats of the Kingdom of Orsinium for quite some time. Their leader, Urfon Ice-Heart, was notorious across the land for having an affinity for Ice Magic. Many of the Reachmen had invaded the caravans around Orsinium, leading to several conflicts. All of it would come to an end with the Siege of Frostbreak Fortress, the main stronghold of the Winterborn. The Winterborn utilized Briar Hearts to enhance their warriors' combat abilities. The Orsinium offense therefore needed to kill off the Briarheart source. To do this, King Kurog and an entourage of warriors entered the fortress, delving into the Reachmen stronghold. The Vestige and Eveli Sharp-Arrow, two warriors called to enter Wrothgar, played an integral role in the conflict, burning down the harpy aerie in Frostbreak and poisoned the Briarheart Trees with the help of Alinon the Alchemist. With the main source of the Briars defeated, the Vestige and King Kurog advanced into Ice-Heart's Lair, confronting the evil warlock. Ultimately, the two warriors defeated Urfon Ice-Heart, ending the siege on Frostbreak and the Winterborn's prominence in Wrothgar. Kurog took Ice-Heart's Blade and presented it to the Chieftains of Wrothgar.
Devoters of Malacath; raid of the Temple of Ire
With the establishment of the Second Orsinium, the Orcish worship of Trinimac was enforced as the primary religion in the kingdom. This action was one of the many things that Orcish clans were opposed to, since they had worshipped Malacath for centuries. The Temple of Ire was created as the place of worship for Trinimac, despite the opposition. Forge-Mother Alga instated High Priestess Solgra as the leader of the Temple. It was no secret that Bazrag gro-Fharun was a heavy devotee of Malacath, so he was the topic of controversy when a rogue group of Malacath worshippers invaded the temple.
A group of Malacath devotees had hijacked the Temple of Ire, holding the priest and priestess hostage until an ultimatum was given in the name of Malacath. King Kurog gro-Orsinium tasked the Vestige with subduing the Malacath devotees and securing the Temple of Ire. Because the front doors were closely guarded, the Vestige sneaked into the upper, hidden entrance, where they defeated several Malacath rogues and saved a Priest of Trinimac. The leaders of this group, Grand Fanatic Shurkol and Mazogug the Bold, were holding the priest in the Temple Rectory. The Vestige was able to defeat both Orcs swiftly and secured the Temple of Ire for Orsinium. When news of this spread across Wrothgar, blame was put upon Chief Bazrag, implying that he had planned the sabotage of the Temple. After this conflict, Kurog sought to bring the Chieftains of Wrothgar (minus Bazrag) to the Scarp Keep, where a moot would be held.
Trouble at Fharun; rescue mission for Bazrag
King Kurog sent the Vestige to the clan holdings of Wrothgaria, ranging from the Morkul Stronghold to the Shatul Range, aiding each clan in an endeavor to bring them to Orsinium for the moot. All of the clans were gathered except for Chief Bazrag of the Fharun Clan. According to Kurog, because of Bazrag's supposed involvement in the incident of Ire, he was not invited, but a larger scheme was at play. High Priestess Solgra received an urgent plea from a shield-wife of the Fharun Clan; the Fharun Stronghold had been captured by a radical group of Trinimac worshippers called the Vosh Rakh. With this news, Solgra sent the Vestige and Eveli Sharp-Arrow on a secret mission to Fharun. Through secretive means, both agents were able to infiltrate Fharun Stronghold and locate Chief Bazrag gro-Fharun deep within Fharun Prison. With Bazrag secured, Shield-Wife Ulsha confirmed the story and that Bazrag was kidnapped when the Temple was ransacked.
Plot against the Malacath Devout; Paragon's Remembrance
The mission to rescue Bazrag was meant to be kept a secret from Kurog's court since, at this point, Bazrag was considered an enemy of the state. However, when news about the rescue mission had reached Kurog, his wrath did not extend upon the Vestige. King Kurog informed the Vestige that Eveli Sharp-Arrow was now an enemy and that he was looking for her within the Kingdom of Orsinium. Worried about their friend, the Vestige sought for a way to warn Eveli and Solgra. They were given a message from Eveli which the Vestige encrypted, meeting with the group in a hidden room of the Greedy Gut. To learn of the Vosh Rakh's plot, they needed to infiltrate the Paragon's Remembrance, located on the western edge of Wrothgar. The Vestige, Eveli Sharp-Arrow, and several scouts entered the ruined fortress and learned of the Vosh Rakh's plan. The radical Trinimac Cult had planned to attack the Clan Chieftains at the Moot in Scarp Keep. With this news, the group rendezvoused at the Greedy Gut Inn, coming up with a plan to foil the Vosh Rakh.
Kurog's gambit; Duel atop of Scarp Keep
The Vosh Rakh had conceived a great plan against the Malacath devotees. Posing as a radical Malacath cult, they invaded the Temple of Ire. Around the same time, Bazrag arrived onto Fharun Stronghold when the Vosh Rakh had raided it, capturing him in the process. The plan was to blame Bazrag and followers of Malacath, to further Trinimac's dominance over the countryside. Later, in Orsinium, Kurog discovered Bazrag's location and captured them as prisoners. The Vestige traveled to Scarp Keep to give Kurog the intel from Paragon's Remembrance but was first pulled aside by Forge-Mother Alga. In the Keep, she revealed to the warrior that she was the one who ordered the Vosh Rakh to defile the temple and to put the blame on Bazrag, to further the control of Kurog gro-Orsinium.
The Vestige managed to escape the wrath of Alga and rescued both Bazrag and Eveli. The entrance to the moot meeting was blocked and guarded by Shield-Wife Razbela and Shield-Wife Oshgana. Around the same time, the Vosh Rakh marched into the Temple of Ire and attempted to capture High Priestess Solgra, who escaped onto the outer roof. The Vestige tried to save her, but a cowardly archer ultimately killed her. With Solgra's death, the Vestige, Eveli, and Bazrag attempted to enter the Moot meeting through a hidden tunnel in the Temple. After traversing the secret tunnel, the three had arrived at the meeting, where Kurog and Alga were trying to kill the Chieftains of Wrothgaria. Amidst of the meeting, the three intervened and battled both Kurog and Alga. During the conflict, Forge-Mother Alga was killed by the Vestige, prompting Kurog to use powerful fire magic to attack the Vestige. In the end, Kurog was defeated and was given a proper Orcish funeral on the cliffs near Scarp Keep. Thus ended the reign of King Kurog gro-Orsinium.
Long live King Kurog; reign of Bazrag gro-Fharun
After the battle, the clan chieftains of Wrothgar gathered and felt that Bazrag gro-Fharun should become the next King of Orsinium. Bazrag was reluctant, but accepted it anyway to set his people on the right path. With Kurog's death, relations between Orsinium and the Daggerfall Covenant had fallen to the wayside, but Bazrag was willing to re-negotiate with High King Emeric and his people. From then on, the Second Orsinium would thrive among the people of the Daggerfall Covenant, aiding their pursuits for the Imperial City and the Ruby Throne. The Covenant fought throughout the Cyrodilic Heartlands and was present in several conflicts, including the Battle of Chalman Keep and greater battles such as the Imperial City Campaign.
The Second Kingdom of Orsinium was well-established throughout the Second Era and served the Daggerfall Covenant to the end. As time went on, the Alliance War came to an end, and the alliances soon began to dwindle. The Daggerfall Covenant dissolved sometime later, certainly before Tiber Septim's conquest of Tamriel, which started in 2E 852. In that time span and beyond, the city of Orsinium was besieged through unknown circumstances. Fharun Stronghold had also changed drastically, becoming the Kingdom of Farrun, which was built on the foundation of the original Fharun settlement. East of Fharun was a small jetty called the Jehanna Docks, which would eventually become the city-state of Jehanna, another Breton city that grew into a significant kingdom among the province of High Rock.[Notes 1]
The Breton expansion into Wrothgar & the Western Reach
Sometime during the Second Era, the Bretons of High Rock expanded into the Wrothgarian Mountains, establishing settlements throughout the countryside. The Kingdoms of Farrun and Jehanna were created out of this expansion. Many of the common-folk of Greater Bretony moved into the Wrothgarian Mountains, becoming herders and farmers, creating townships such as Burgshire and Oxworth Hamlet. After the Battle of Old Hroldan, many of the Nordic and Breton peoples rightfully feared the rising power of Tiber Septim and became allies of King Cuhlecain of Falkreath and his growing army. The new Third Empire advanced onto High Rock, establishing a provisional government in the Western Reach, overlooking Wrothgar and Bangkorai.
The Provisional Governor of the Western Reach was Titus Alorius, a man of Colovian descent. The vast region was lawless and unruly, and travelers tended to avoid The Reach region due to the presence of the Reachmen and other bandits. The Western Reach became separate from High Rock due to its unruliness and the lack of a strong government, except for Evermore, which remains on the edge of the Reach, next to the Bjoulsae River. The Breton inhabitants of Wrothgar were able to separate themselves from their noble counterparts and adopted very traditional methods of living (i.e. making use of medicinal herbs rather than modern methods). Breton warlocks and medicine men had become indistinguishable from the Orcish shamans and wizards. The specifics of Wrothgar's history during this time is largely unknown. The Breton herders of Wrothgar were not as fortunate as their cousins in Greater Bretony; whenever their youth were accepted into a priesthood, it was considered a time for celebration. On the 6th of Hearthfire, the Bretons of the Wrothgarian Mountains celebrate Khurat, which is a celebration whenever their greatest scholars are acccepted into the Priesthoods of High Rock. Everyone would visit a church for a blessing or a prayer.[UL 1]
- Main article: Wrothgarian Mountains (Daggerfall)
Duel of honor; Gortwog & Nova Orsinium
The region where the former Orsiniums were originally located was a point of interest for the nobles of Wayrest and other figures in the eastern Iliac. The area is a pocket realm in the Wrothgarian Mountains, bordering the County of Menevia and the Kingdom of Wayrest. Lord Bowyn of Wayrest had a valid claim to the region and almost gained possession of it, but for the arrival of Gortwog gro-Nagorm, the chieftain of the Minat Clan. Both Bowyn and Gortwog had an equally strong claim to the region, so a duel commenced to determine the ruler. Bowyn, being the first claimant, chose the location, which was the courtyard of Lord Berylth. Gortwog, being the second claimant, chose the equipment, which was traditional Orcish-style weapons and armor. At the end of the duel, Gortwog defeated Bowyn and claimed ownership of the Orsinium Area, where he would establish the Third Orsinium of Wrothgar, with him leading the helm.
With the help of the Orsimer, Gortwog gro-Nagorm created the Third Orsinium on the northern edge of the Orsinium Area. Gortwog proved to be a valiant warrior as well as a shrewd diplomat, establishing himself as a superpower in the Iliac Bay. Like his predecessor Kurog gro-Bagrakh, Gortwog had founded a religious temple dedicated to Trinimac, much to the dismay of the Orcish worshippers of Malacath. Tension grew within Orsinium; many were aware of the conflict back in the Second Era and felt that this would come back to bite him. Gortwog gro-Nagorm at one point came into possession of the Totem of Tiber Septim, which gave those of royal blood the power to use Numidium, the Brass-God of the Dwarves that Tiber Seprim had used in his conquest over Tamriel. With the Totem and Numidium, Gortwog's Kingdom of Orsinium was recognized as an official Imperial province under the reign of Uriel Septim VII.
Journey to Aetherius; mission for the Mantella
The Brass-God Numidium required a power source or would become useless. The Heart of Lorkhan was the source of power during Tiber Septim's time, but it was lost to history, supposedly deep in the volcanic wastes of Vvardenfell. The only other option was the Mantella, a large, green soul gem that housed the soul of Zurin Arctus, the Underking of yore. The Mantella's location had been left largely unknown until the Mantellan Crux was discovered by Nulfaga, the Dowager Queen of Daggerfall. An Agent of the Emperor acquired the Totem and was given a vision by Nulfaga to rendezvous with her deep within the Wrothgarian Mountains in Shedungent. Nulfaga had transported the Agent into Aetherius, where they retrieved the Mantella. However, a magical anomaly occurred, warping the west.
Upon retrieving the Mantella, a Dragon Break had occurred over the Iliac Bay and the rest of Tamriel, which resulted in different temporal outcomes but allowed for all of them to remain possibilities simultaneously. The four major kingdoms of Daggerfall, Sentinel, Wayrest, and Orsinium, expanded their territories, absorbing the minor nations of the Iliac. King Gortwog had expanded his territory, encompassing the Wrothgarian Mountains, the Dragontail Mountains, and portions of the southern Iliac Bay, ideally the Bjoulsae estuary in Hammerfell. Orsinium was still considered an Imperial territory, but was recognized as the County of Orsinium in the Iliac Bay. Regions like Gavaudon and the Ilessan Hills were greatly affected by the Orcs of Orsinium, who were combating the Bretons of both Daggerfall and Wayrest for that territory.
The Miracle of Peace; the Warp in the West
The expansion of the Iliac kingdoms did not come without any issues; the kingdoms, at the height of their fame and glory, had warred against one another, each struggling in vain for supremacy. Orsinium expanded across the mountain ranges of the Iliac Bay, taking nations along the way, including the Fiefdom of Mournoth. The Third Orsinium warred against the regions between Daggerfall and Wrothgar. Orsinium battled in a three-way clash against the Kingdom of Daggerfall and the Kingdom of Wayrest around the Barony of the Ilessan Hills, starting a forest fire which spread from the Duchy of Daenia to the Fiefdom of Ykalon. In 3E 417, the Warp in the West shifted the tides of war in the Iliac Bay. The series of conflicts occurring throughout the Bay ended within a single day. The forty-four unique nations of the Iliac evolved into the four kingdoms of the Iliac.
King Gortwog had continued to rule over the Imperial territory of Orsinium for quite some time, establishing himself as the King of Orcs among the Iliac Bay and the Third Empire. This event would not be the case with King Eadwyre, who died from old age. Eadwyre's biological daughter, Elysana assumed the throne instead of her half-brother, Helseth Hlaalu, who returned to Mournhold. Elysana's rule was different than Eadwyre's; she was more ruthless and was feared all across the Western Empire. Elysana and her consort had ruled over the Kingdom of Wayrest and allied with King Gortwog of Orsinium to further establish her dominance. This left many wondering what her next move would be, now that she had such influence over High Rock and Northern Hammerfell. The city of Orsinium would continue to rule over the Wrothgarian Mountains into the Fourth Era.
Conquest over the west; War of the Bend'r-Mahk
During the Imperial Simulacrum from 3E 389 to 3E 399, Emperor Uriel Septim VII and Talin Warhaft were imprisoned in the Deadlands by Jagar Tharn. Tharn planned for months to capture the throne, and was able to reign in Uriel's place for a decade. Tharn had a powerful weapon called the Staff of Chaos which he split it into nine pieces and scattered across Tamriel; the staff was the only thing keeping Uriel Septim and Warhaft in Oblivion. A warrior escaped his clutches and traveled all corners of Tamriel to retrieve the missing pieces. The hero was known as the Eternal Champion, and he assembled the staff and defeated Jagar Tharn at the Imperial Palace. Civil unrest had spread throughout Tamriel, with the provinces having warred against each other, one such conflict being the War of Bend'r-Mahk. The region of Wrothgar was at this point undefined, and many settlements dotted the landscape or at least the general area. The cities of Farrun and Jehanna were situated on the northernmost part of the province. Smaller townships included Dunlain Falls and Cloud Spring.
The War of Bend'r-Mahk ravaged the Western Reach and the area west of the Skyrim border. The invaders from Skyrim took the eastern-half of Dragonstar while The Crowns of the region remained in control of Dragonstar West. The conflict ravaged the Wrothgarian Mountains and Craglorn. The Breton resistance against the Nords is located in the city-state of Jehanna, on the northeastern basin of Wrothgar. Although the conflict around this area was somewhat feeble, it was more prevalent along the Druadach Mountains. Luckily, the war was not a serious threat to High Rock, as the major kingdoms of the province were warring with each other. The War of Bend'r-Mahk was more severe in the province of Hammerfell, where the Kingdom of Dragonstar was disputed and the city-state of Elinhir became the center of the Redguard resistance. The conflict started sometime before 3E 397, and continued even after the Oblivion Crisis, which ended in 3E 433. The War of Bend'r-Mahk continued into the Fourth Era.
The Third Siege of Orsinium; migration into Skyrim
What happened to Nova Orsinium during the Fourth Era is largely unknown, but it is known that the grand city of Orsinium was besieged by the Bretons and Redguards of the Iliac Bay. The Sack of Orsinium's defending armies consisted of the Orcish militia, the Seventh Legion, and the Fifteenth Legion. In the end, Nova Orsinium was besieged, and many Orcish citizens migrated to the easterly province of Skyrim. Before this exchange, one of the only establish Orcish settlements in Skyrim was the legendary stronghold of Cradlecrush, which was destroyed a long time ago. Another was the Grand Chieftain of Yashnag gro-Yazgu, which was razed by Hakkvild Yashnag-Slayer, the Jarl of Falkreath during the Interregnum. When the Orsimer moved into Skyrim, they created several strongholds, including Dushnikh Yal in The Reach and Largashbur in The Rift. The Orcs were still considered citizens of the Empire, but continued to live isolated lives from the city-folk of Skyrim.
The Sack of Orsinium would have taken place sometime in the early Fourth Era. At that point, Gortwog gro-Nagorm would have been an alive as the leader of Orsinium, assuming he was not assassinated or killed. Exactly who was responsible for the sacking of Orsinium is unclear, but the only person with a substantial amount of control in Hammerfell was King Lhotun of Sentinel, who would have recently fought a conflict with the True Crowns of Elinhir.[source?] Regardless, the Third Orsinium was sacked, and a new one was reconstructed, but this time it was relocated in the province of Hammerfell, likely in the region of Craglorn, which already has an Orcish presence in the area.[Notes 2]
- Nova Orsinium (Third)
- Orsinium (Second)
- Fharun Keep
- Screeching Echkin Inn
- Fharun Prison
- Sanctuary of Malacath
- Dunlain Falls
- Exile's Barrow (settlement)
- Friendship Gate
- Frostbreak Fortress
- Merchant's Gate
- Morkul Stronghold
- Murtag Stronghold
- Orzorga's Kitchen (settlement/inn)
- Shatul Range
- Torug's Arch
- Tumnosh Clanhold
- Raven Spring
- Wroth Naga
- Wrothgaria (city)
- Exile's Barrow (Nordic ruin)
- Forlorn Watchtower
- Honor's Rest
- Maelstrom Arena
- Nyzchaleft Falls
- Old Orsinium
- Pariah's Pinnacle
- Thukhozod's Sanctum
- Watcher's Hold
- Argent Mine
- Bloody Knoll
- Bonerock Cavern
- Coldperch Cavern
- Coldwind's Den
- Graystone Quarry
- Morkul Descent
- Nikolvara's Kennel
- Sanctuary of Malacath
- Aqueduct Rock
- Boreal Forge
- Druadach Mountains
- Great Bay
- Grudge-Rock Falls
- Icy Shore
- Jehanna Road
- King-Chief's Throne
- Sea of Ghosts
- Shipwreck Cove
- Siege Road
- Trader's Road
- Two Rivers
- Wrothgarian Mountains (mountain range)
- There have been several occasions where both Wrothgar and the Wrothgarian Mountains are referred to two different entities. In such instances, the latter is referred to as the mountain range separating Wrothgar, Stormhaven, and Bangkorai; the other one is referred to as the region north of the mountain range.
- The Elder Scrolls: Arena
- The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall
- The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard (mentioned only)
- The Elder Scrolls Travels: Shadowkey
- The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion (mentioned only)
- The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (mentioned only)
- The Elder Scrolls Online (mentioned only)
- The Elder Scrolls: Legends (mentioned only)
- There is no lore tied to the information specifically mentioned in this passage. There is a large time-skip from 2E 583 to 3E 399 and out of it came the Second Siege of Orsinium, Jehanna, and Farrun.
- Much of this is speculation based on the evidence given in the Third Edition of the Pocket Guides as well as minor hints in the Lord of Souls novel.
- Mystery of the Chub Loon
- The Code of Malacath
- Malacath and Trinimac
- On Orcs and the Afterlife
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, Third Edition: Orsinium
- Wayrest, Jewel of the Bay
- Events of "The Ashes of Our Fathers"
- The Great Siege of Orsinium
- Memory Stone of Makela Leki, Pt. 1
- The Fury of King Ranser
- Triumphs of a Monarch, Ch. 6
- The True Fate of King Ranser
- The Chronicles of King Kurog, Book IV
- Events of The Elder Scrolls Online: Orsinium
- Meet the Character – Chief Bazrag
- Events of "For King and Glory"
- Events of "A Hidden Harvest"
- Meet the Character – Forge-Mother Alga
- Events of "A King-Sized Problem"
- Events of "In the Name of the King"
- Events of "To Save a Chief"
- Events of "The Anger of a King"
- Events of "The King's Gambit"
- Events of "Blood on a King's Hands"
- Events of "Long Live the King"
- Events in The Elder Scrolls Online
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, First Edition: High Rock
- How Orsinium Passed to the Orcs
- Events of "Totem, Totem, Who Gets the Totem?"
- Events of "Journey to Aetherius"
- The Warp in the West
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, Third Edition: High Rock
- Events of The Elder Scrolls: Arena
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, Third Edition: Skyrim
- An Elder Scrolls Novel: Lord of Souls (Part 1, Chapter 6)
- Events of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
|High Rock Locations in Lore|
|Cities||Camlorn • Daggerfall • Evermore • Fharun • Jehanna • Northpoint • Orsinium • Shornhelm • Wayrest|
|Regions||Bangkorai • Glenumbra • Rivenspire • Stormhaven • Wrothgar|
(Miscellaneous: Betony • Isle of Balfiera)
|Landmarks||Anticlere • Beldama Wyrd Tree • Bisnensel • Bjoulsae River • Crypt of Hearts • Direnni Tower • Dwynnen • Firebrand Keep • Frostbreak Fortress • Glenumbra Moors • Honor's Rest • Sorrow • The Doomcrag • Traitor's Tor • Weeping Giant|