Conceptart of a nord, descendants of men's first known kind.
|Universe||The Elder Scrolls Universe|
The term originated from human language. It is used to mean "them" or "us" - group of people. The term is analogous to word "Mer" in ancient aldmeri tongue. Both of racial groups have come to calling each other by the names and don't find it offensive in any way and they have been seen to be referring to their own kind by the term as well. This is, probably, due to the fact that both groups share certain distrust for each other and arrogance to consider themselves better.
There is no known continent or a region on Nirn Men originated from. There are no known elven records on this subject and Men invented writing relatively late, meaning that there are no early records written anywhere.
Earliest records mentioning human races date mid-Merethic Era when nedes, human race native to now frozen Atmora, began migrating to northern Tamriel, region later named Skyrim. Most of human races now inhabiting Tamriel are known to be their descendants.
However, records of nedic sea voyages in late Merethic Era tell stories of "Entire kingdoms of men beyond their recognition, skin charred like overcooked meat." That means that previously mentioned Atmora isn't the real origins of humankind.
Moreover, there are stories of humans even on the mysterious continent of Akavir.
Some imperial scholars believe that men could share elven homeland of ehlnofay and have evolved from aldmer like modern elven races. However that is higly unlikely.
The most significant difference between humans and elves is their lifespan. Unlike thousands of years long lifespans of elves human races can not live more that hundred years naturally and most die by ages of 60–80 years. However, men can reproduce much quicker than elves. Proper family no matter farmer or royalty can have three or more kids without any problems, while for elves even two children is rarity. This is the reason humans seem so pest-like to elven kind.
It is very easy to tell men from mer visually as humans are taller and more muscular than most elves. Another easily noticeable feature of elven kind is their pointy ears which men do not have. The only exception for this are the orcs, who are very different from other elven races and resembles other races like goblins.
Another difference worth mentioning is that humans rely mostly on non-magical warfare. As they don't have the magical potency of elves. Only exception for this would be mix of human and elven race - Bretons. Magic is considered tool of the weak and is mistrusted in most human cultures.
Nords, commonly known as Sky-children, are tall and fair-haired humans from Skyrim who are known for their incredible resistance to cold and even magical frost.
They are enthusiastic warriors, and act as soldiers and mercenaries all over Tamriel. Eager to augment their combat skills beyond the traditional methods of Skyrim, they excel in all manner of warfare. They thrive in the cold reminiscent of their native Atmora, and are known as a militant people by their neighbors. Nords are also natural seamen, and have benefited from nautical trade since their first migrations across the sea. They lead and crew the merchant fleets of many regions, and may be found all along Tamriel's coast.
Merethic Era Edit
Nords, as their name implies, originated in the northern-most place in the known world, known as Atmora. The little known about the land comes from elder elvish records which are known to refer to the continent as Altmora, meaning "elder wood". It is likely that the word Atmora is derived from the elven term.
Even in ancient times, Atmora must have been extremely cold, at least as much as modern Skyrim, because the men who lived there are very well suited to live in cold climates. It is said that during the time of the migration, a protracted and bloody civil war had gripped Atmora, and, as the story goes, a man named Ysgramor rallied those people from all sides and set sail to the south, eventually arriving in Skyrim, the extreme northern tip of the continent of Tamriel, at a place known as "Hsaarik Head".
They named the new land Mereth in tribute to the elves who populated the continent (having settled most of Tamriel millennia earlier). Contrary to most stories, which erroneously credit Ysgramor with the first human settlement of Tamriel, he and his colonists were simply the latest of a long line of emigrants from Atmora. Indeed, the central continent was already populated by atmorans and indigenous men throughout. As it goes, elves and humans lived in relative peace and prosperity for a long time. Racial tensions between the two species gradually rose however and it wasn't long before conflict erupted between the nords and the snow elves.
The falmer saw that the vital young race would soon surpass their stagnant culture if left unchecked, and fell upon the unsuspecting Nords in the infamous Night of Tears. Saarthal was destroyed and only Ysgramor and two of his sons escaped to Atmora. It wasn't long before Ysgramor returned to Skyrim to execute his vengeance, bringing with him his famous five hundred companions. Upon their return to Tamriel, they expediently slaughtered the elves living there and began the process by which the elven population of Skyrim would be completely eliminated.
First Era Edit
In 1E240 King Vrage the Gifted began the process of expansion that became known as the "Skyrim Conquests". These conquests culminated in the first empire of the nords. Within fifty years, Skyrim ruled all of northern Tamriel, including most of present-day High Rock and the whole of Morrowind. Some ambitious nord leaders considered attacking northern Cyrodiil, however the Jerall Mountains proved to be too much of a challenge, and northern Cyrodiil too poor of a prize. In the centuries that followed, Skyrim expanded and contracted as battles were won and lost.
In 1E 369 king Borgas, the last of the Ysgramor's line, was killed on the "Wild Hunt", starting the "War of Succession" in the region of Daggerfall and was the beginning of the decline of the Nordic Empire. When the ruling council or Moot was unable to choose the capable Jarl Hanse of Winterhold as the new king of Skyrim, the ensuing civil war tore the empire apart. The war ended in 1 E420 with the "Pact of Chieftains" and the empire lost all of its holdings in High Rock and Morrowind, and Skyrim was divided into several independent kingdoms.
Second Era Edit
Third Era Edit
In the centuries after the empire's founding, Skyrim was drawn in several major conflicts. One of these was the War of the Red Diamond. Skyrim sided with Queen Potema against the Empire. The civil war tore the Empire apart and it would take seventeen long years before Potema was finally defeated. As a result of this war there is a strong underground movement called the Horme that believes Potema and her deposed son Uriel III to be the last of Tiber Septim's true blood and under that principle lead raids against imperial interests in the province. The kingdoms of Skyrim have started several wars to expand their territory, increasing the territory that is considered Skyrim, and allowing the Nordic counts to swallow up many miles of eastern High Rock and Hammerfell.
Fourth Era Edit
4E 201 —The High King of Skyrim is killed in a contest of arms by Ulfric Stormcloak, Jarl of Windhelm.
- Using the Thu'um, Ulfric staggers the High King, and finishes him off with a stab to the chest.
4E 201 — The Nords of Skyrim engage in a Civil War.
- Ulfric begins the Stormcloak rebellion in an attempt to take the throne of High King and secede from the Empire.
- Ulfric is captured and sent to Helgen to be executed along with other rebels and two unrelated prisoners after a surprise ambush led by the Imperial General Tulllius.
4E 201 --- The Dragon Crisis Begins
- Before Ulfric can be executed, the first dragon seen in centuries attacks and destroys the small outpost of Helgen, killing almost everyone inside with the exception of a small number of legionaries, stormcloaks and the Dragonborn.
The spiritual relationship between the Nords and breath, which is associated with the Sky Goddess Kyne, is also important.
Nords consider themselves to be the children of the sky. They call Skyrim the Throat of the World, because it is where the sky exhaled on the land and formed them. They see themselves as eternal outsiders and invaders, and even when they conquer and rule another people; they feel no kinship with them. The breath and the voice are the vital essence of a Nord. When they defeat great enemies they take their tongues as trophies. These are woven into ropes and can hold speech like an enchantment. The power of a Nord can be articulated into a shout, like the kiai of an Akaviri swordsman. The strongest of their warriors are called "Tongues." When the Nords attack a city, they take no siege engines or cavalry; the Tongues form in a wedge in front of the gatehouse, and draw in breath. When the leader lets it out in a kiai, the doors are blown in, and the axemen rush into the city. Shouts can be used to sharpen blades or to strike enemies. A common effect is the shout that knocks an enemy back, or the power of command. A strong Nord can instill bravery in men with his battle-cry, or stop a charging warrior with a roar. The greatest of the Nords can call to specific people over hundreds of miles, and can move by casting a shout, appearing where it lands.
The art of Thu'um as a weapon is now lost and forbidden. Apart from the students of the discredited School of Thu'um in the Imperial City, Tiber Septim was reputedly the last man to wield this power. However, the ancient Greybeards still sit atop the many steps leading to the peak of High Hrothgar, where the Nordic race was born.
Like most Tamrielic races, the religion of Skyrim is focused on the Aedra and their old ally, Lorkhan. Kyne is notably more assertive and warlike than the nature-loving Kynareth. Although Mara is present in her role as a mother goddess, it was Kyne who is the mother of the Nords. She is also credited with sending her son Morihaus (and perhaps Pelinal) to the aid of the Cyro-Nordic slaves in their uprising. The chief of the pantheon of Skyrim is Lorkhan, and he merits the most mention. The Nords know Shor as the king of the gods, a champion of men in their struggles against the elves. He was treacherously slain by elven devils, yet continues to bestow favor on his people by aiding them with immortal champions such as Ysmir, another member of the Nordic pantheon. Today, Ysmir is the name by which Nords recognize the divinity of Talos.
Also of note is that fact that certain Daedra, such as Hermaeus Mora, can be found in the Nordic pantheon.
The isolated tribe known as the Skaal follow a different form of faith to their mainland brethren. Instead of regular religious worship they venerate nature. They believe that certain parts of nature, such as the winds, the trees and the sun, were given to them by the All-Maker. In this regard, wolves and bears are especially sacred to the small tribe. All aspects of nature must constantly be in harmony, for this is what gives the Skaal their shamanic powers. This magic was given to them by the All-Maker, a benevolent, unknowable creator deity. Further research into their oral traditions has led to the conclusion that the All-Maker is their version of Alduin. The Skaal also tell tales of the Adversary, the enemy of mankind, and his lieutenant, the Greedy Man. As other tales show, the Greedy Man is none other than another incarnation of Lorkhan in a Nordic pantheon, yet cast in this case as a demon. In view of this, the Adversary is none other than the Padomay/Sithis of the north, which gives birth to Lorkhan in elven tales. Indeed, in this regard the faith of the Skaal is nearly the reverse of the pantheon of Skyrim. Although not worshiping them, the Skaal are also aware of the existence of the daedric princes.
Imperials, once known as Cyrodils, are well-educated and well-spoken natives of the civilized, cosmopolitan province of Cyrodiil.
Imperials are also known for the discipline and training of their armies. With this they were able to fight off the Redguard and control most of Tamriel. Imperials have proven to be shrewd diplomats and traders, and these traits, along with their remarkable skill and infantry training, have enabled them to subdue all other nations and races, and to rise their glorious empire.
The Imperials control most ports in Tamriel and are similar in appearance to Bretons despite their darker skin.
The Nine Divines Edit
The nine divines are the most important religious order in Cyrodiil. There are six gods and three goddessess:
- Akatosh: Dragon God of Time.
- Arkay: God of Life and Death.
- Dibella: Goddess of Beauty.
- Julianos: God of Wisdom and Logic.
- Kynareth: Goddess of Air.
- Mara: Goddess of Love.
- Stendarr: God of Mercy.
- Talos: God of War and Governance.
- Zenithar: God of Work and Commerce.
- Imperial NPCs often have Latin names (Sorex Vinius, Tullius, Camilla Valerius, Marcurio etc.) in keeping with the overall Roman characteristics. However, starting with Skyrim, some imperial names start to sound more Italian, reflecting the inevitable changes in language as time flows.
Redguards are a race from the province of Hammerfell that is known to be extremely quick and agile.
They are excellent in all arts concerning blade and shield and descend from a long line of warriors and mystic seers.
The most naturally talented warriors in Tamriel, the dark skinned, wiry haired Redguards of Hammerfell seem born to battle, though their pride and fierce independence of spirit make them more suitable as scouts or skirmishers, or as free ranging heroes and adventurers, than as rank and file soldiers. In addition to their cultural affinities for many weapon and armor styles, Redguards are also blessed with hardy constitutions and quickness of foot.
In Hammerfell, they don't like spellcasters, because wizards "steal souls and tamper with minds", and if you use magic, you're weak or wicked. They particularly hated conjuration, relating it to necromancy and mysticism because it tampered with the mind. However, redguards are very fond of destruction spells.
Although Redguards are human, they do not share the same blood as Nords, Bretons, and Imperials because of their origin in Yokuda.
Bretons, also known as Manmer, are the human descendants who hail from the province of High Rock.
They have descended from the people of nede and aldmer. The aldmer thought of making a superior race with their own "superior" blood by mating with other races.
History and Culture Edit
They are pure spell weavers and are advanced in all the arcane arts. They are united in culture and language, but divided politically. Their origins can be traced to the First Era of Tamriel's history, when the aldmer intermingled extensively with the nedic people. This mostly happened during the period in the first Era when mer held men as slaves, which lead to masters to impregnate their female captives or female masters would force or imtimidate there male slaves into intercourse.
Bretons are average sized, fair-haired people. They are highly intelligent, willful, and have an outgoing personality. Intermingling with elven blood has given Bretons an affinity for magic, so much that it's said that Bretons are weaned on magic, for it seems to infuse their very being. Breton culture operates under the feudal system, and their society is agrarian and hierarchical.
The main religion in High Rock is the worship of the nine divines, however some Bretons still worship the gods of their elven ancestors.
The Forsworn Clan Edit
The Forsworn are a clan of aggressive Bretons who terrorize "the Reach" in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. They initially appear to be a group of exotic bandits, but further investigation reveals that they are actually a remnant of the decades-old ethnic conflict between the local nords and the indigenous Bretons.
The western reach region has historically been ridden with strife and turmoil; its location between High Rock and Skyrim has caused the two provinces to fight bitterly over its occupation. A peaceful agreement was reached centuries ago, but the intermingling of Bretons and nords in the region has created a regionally distinct lineage of Bretons called reachmen.
Some among the reachmen formed the Forsworn, who have developed a unique culture of banditry, lawlessness, and hedge-magic, as well as a burning hatred for the nords.
The Forsworn see "the Reach" as their ancestral land, and do not accept its Nordic occupation. They were the rulers of Markarth until Ulfric Stormcloak and his men drove them out of the city about twenty years prior to the awakening of dragons in Skyrim.
They have since been a plague on the city, as well as on neighboring mines. In addition to their ancient gods, the Forsworn revere hagravens, which can be found in several Forsworn encampments. They can be extremly tough opponents for a low-level character: they fight fiercely with a blend of tenacious one-handed melee (single and dual wielding) and magical attacks.
The now extinct Nedes originally lived on the frozen continent of Atmora, where they banded into small clans who fought in a great civil war.
A small group of nedes then migrated and settled in northern Tamriel.
The Nordic hero Ysgramor, leader of a great colonizing fleet to Tamriel, developed a runic transcription of Nordic speech based on aldmeri principles, and was the first recorded human historian. Ysgramor's fleet landed at "Hsaarik Head" at the extreme northern tip of Skyrim's "Broken Cape". They built the legendary city of Saarthal and lived with the Falmer in relative peace until the snow elves began to notice the comparatively fast growth on nedic population.
The elves drove the men away during the Night of Tears, but Ysgramor soon returned with his five hundred companions, who settled and those who stayed in Skyrim became the nords, with those going west breeding with mer and becoming the Bretons and those going south becoming the imperials.
The remaining nedes raided elvish settlements along the coast from Skyrim and Atmora until 1E68. The last two ships from Atmora pulled into a harbor with more than half of their crews dead. Atmora became a frozen wasteland, and all who still lived there died.
The Orma were a tribe native to Black Marsh from the first era. There was an elevated occurrence of congenital blindness in the tribe, more specifically completely lacking eyes, and such individuals were said to be masters of their other senses.
The Kothringi were another race of Black Marsh natives mentioned in only a few in-game books. They were said to look like men only with metallic skin and were quite common in Black Marsh during the second era. They were eventually wiped out by the Thrassian Plague before the start of the third era.
The Akaviri were a legendary race of men native to Akavir.
There are several theories about the men of Akavir, that they died out long ago, were eaten by the tsaesci, or that they are the tsaesci themselves and stories of serpent-men are just fictional (as suggested by some books in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim).
Little to nothing is known about the culture of the akaviri, other than the fact that they seem to heavily mirror Asian culture through their armor, weapons, and buildings. The akaviri also seemed to have used katanas, a traditional Japanese blade.
- ↑ In the book Wolf Queen v8, it is mentioned that 70 years is considered old age for men.