Lore:Beastfolk

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Beastfolk (or Betmer) is used to refer to any sentient beast-like humanoid that inhabits Tamriel, such as the Argonians, Imga and Khajiit. A few races have died out or disappeared, such as the Lilmothiit and the Bird Men.

Argonians[edit]

Illustration of a typical Argonian male

Argonians (in their native tongue of Jel they call themselves the Saxhleel, or People of the Root) are the reptilian natives of Black Marsh, a vast swampland province in southeastern Tamriel. The other races often prefer to refer to them as 'lizards' or the 'Lizard Folk' instead, especially when meaning to be derogative. They are known as the foremost experts in guerrilla warfare throughout the Starry Heart, a reputation brought upon them by defending their borders from enemies for countless centuries. Argonians have a lifespan similar to that of humans. According to the First Era Scholar Brendan the Persistent "the Argonian people have, throughout Tamrielic history, been perhaps the most misunderstood, vilified, and reviled of all the sentient races. Yet, those who have taken the time to experience Argonian culture have gained a greater appreciation for this noble and beautiful people." However, it should be noted that he himself went missing in his final expedition into the deeper swamps of their homeland.

For more information, see the main lore article.

Bird Men[edit]

The Bird Men were a race of beastfolk who inhabited City Isle in Cyrodiil in the Middle Merethic Era. The name they gave themselves, if any, is lost to history. The only known record of their existence comes from the epic poem Father of the Niben, which describes the adventures of the legendary Aldmer explorer Topal the Pilot, who charted the coasts of Tamriel and discovered the Niben River and Topal Bay. In the poem, while Topal and his crew strove to return home to Firsthold, they traveled up the Niben River to Lake Rumare, where they encountered "brilliant flightful creatures of glorious colors" with "taloned feet". Topal's crew taught the Bird Men their language, and in return the Bird Men made Topal their lord and granted him the "eight islands" that would later make up City Isle. After Topal's departure, the Bird Men are never mentioned again in recorded history, and are believed to have met their extinction at the hands of the Khajiit long before the Ayleids migrated to Cyrodiil.

Dreugh[edit]

Dreughs are an ancient species of aquatic, octopus-like beastfolk, commonly hunted for their hide and the wax from their shells. They are sometimes known as water dreughs. For one year of their life, dreughs undergo karvinasim and emerge onto land as aggressive crustaceans to breed. During this period they are known as land dreughs or Billies. Unlike their aquatic counterparts, the land dreughs show no signs of their usual intelligence and kill indiscriminately, using powerful shock attacks and even going so far as to cocoon living victims in mud to feed their young.

Dreughs are found mostly in northern, western and eastern Tamriel, but can usually be found anywhere coastal. They are known to inhabit the Inner Sea and the Abecean Sea, migrating into the waterways of the Iliac Bay. Land dreughs can be found as far inland as Cyrodiil and Craglorn. Although altercations can happen when swimming in these waters, the dreughs are mild-mannered, and usually scavenge for food. After their year on land, dreughs undergo meff, where they digest their unneeded skin and organs and vomit the congealed remains as small fibrous balls called "grom". Dreughs are known to be immune to paralysis, poison and disease and resistant to magic, but have a low tolerance to frost. They can regenerate health in darkness and in water, but cannot enter holy places. Their infamous shock attacks are unique to land dreughs, and those in the water must rely on melee attacks. As well as using dreugh wax in alchemy, their hide is used by the Dunmer to make traditional armor and weapons.

The origins of the dreughs are clouded in myth. In the Iliac Bay region, they are rumored to be the remnants of a prehistoric civilization from long before the First Era. Some scholars argue that the land dreugh is actually a distant relative of the true dreugh from further back on the evolutionary timeline, perhaps even related to Spider Daedra. The ancient Chimer once had dealings with the dreughs; Tribunal Temple teachings speak of the treacherous "Altmer of the sea" and their castles of glass and coral. Their protracted conflict with Dunmer hunters is blamed for their devolved intelligence and the destruction of their civilization.

According to conflicting legends, the dreughs once ruled the world in the previous kalpa, and Molag Bal had served as their chief. When the dead carapace of Bal's old image was dropped into the new world, a Chimer child from Gnisis wore it to scare his village, but instead became the Ruddy Man. Vivec did battle with the Ruddy Man, and their fighting created the West Gash region of Vvardenfell. Vivec was victorious, and gave the carapace to the Queen of Dreughs to guard; instead, the dreughs gave it to a wayward shaman of the House of Troubles, and the Ruddy Man appeared again ten years later at Tear. After defeating him a second time, Vivec gave the carapace to the devout and loyal mystics of the Number Room, who made it into "a philosopher's armor". According to the teachings of Mankar Camoran, the tyrannical dreugh-kings ruled over Mundus and enslaved the oceans of Lyg before their world was destroyed by Mehrunes Dagon.

For more information, see the main lore article.

Giant[edit]

Giants are a race of enormous humanoids with colossal strength. They are found in the wilderness of Skyrim, High Rock, Hammerfell, Cyrodiil and Valenwood.

They have thick grey skin, long, powerful limbs, large hands and feet, and thick greyish-brown hair decorated with braids and beads. Additionally, most Giants have decorative scars carved into their chests. They clothe themselves in fur pelts adorned with the bones of animals and people, although many prefer a simple loincloth.

Although they tower above most races, their height can vary. Some stand between 11 and 12 feet tall, whereas others can be several times the height of the average person. Female giants are much less common than males, and the only known sightings have been in the Wrothgar region during the Second Era.

For more information, see the main lore article.

Goblin-ken[edit]

Goblin-ken (or goblin-kin) is an unspecific term used to refer to several different beastfolk, including goblins, ogres and gremlins. Although technically elves, Orcs are considered to be goblin-ken due to the common belief that they are somehow related to goblins. Goblin-ken are used as slaves by the Altmer of Summerset Isle. During the Camoran Dynasty, hundreds of goblin-ken were set free by the rulers of Summerset Isle and allowed to settle the lands north of Valenwood. The Orcish tribes chose to settle high in the Wrothgarian Mountains, near Old H'roldan, which was a part of High Rock at the time. This was due to their dependence on a rare shaggy giant centipede herdbeast that can live only at high altitudes on alpine and sub-alpine forage. The goblin-ken founded Orsinium (literally translated as Orc-Town) at the location. After the first sacking of the fortress by the Order of the Diagna and the subsequent rebuilding by Gortwog gro-Nagorm, Orsinium had apparently become solely inhabited by the Orcs, with no further reference to their fellow goblin-ken.

For more information, see the main lore article.

Imga[edit]

The Imga, or Great Apes, are native beastfolk of Valenwood. These intelligent apes are said to have flourished in Valenwood long before the Aldmer ever arrived there. They cohabit in the forests with the Bosmer tribes, and also inhabit many of the abandoned human trading posts which had been established during the Second Empire.

The most notable Imga was undoubtebly Marukh, a First Era prophet who rose to prominence during the Camoran Dynasty. His teachings sparked the massive cultural and spiritual movement known as the Alessian Order.

Khajiit[edit]

Illustration of a typical Khajiit Suthay-raht male

Khajiit are cat-like people who come from Elsweyr, known for high intelligence and agility. These traits make them very good thieves and acrobats, but Khajiit are also fearsome warriors. However, they are rarely known to be mages. Khajiit mostly stay on land, but piracy and skooma trade does draw some to work as sailors.

Khajiit anatomy differs greatly from both men and elves, not only because of their fur, tail, and sometimes toe-walking stance, but also their digestive system and metabolism. Khajiit, Argonians, and Imga are the so-called "beast races" of Tamriel because of these large differences. Khajiit have a lifespan similar to that of humans. There are no well-documented cases of cross-breeding between Khajiit and other races, though there are rumors of such a thing. The foreign appearance and behavior of Khajiit make them common targets of racial discrimination.

For more information, see the main lore article.

Lamia[edit]

Lamias are a species of amphibious beastfolk. They have a serpentine appearance, with the torso of a woman and the tail of a snake. Despite being exclusively female, lamias lay eggs, which they are incredibly protective of. Found all over Tamriel, they can live in water or on land, although they rarely venture far from the water. Lamias are larger than most other mortal races, but can interbreed with them according to fables.

Despite being reviled as monsters, lamias are an intelligent species; they can speak Tamrielic, can cast powerful magic, and adorn themselves with jewelry. In combat, they rely on debilitating shrieks and powerful claws that drain an opponent's stamina. They seemingly have their own religion, venerating entities known as the Egg Mother and the Great Egg.

Lamias have had little impact on history due to their primitive nature and hostile attitude towards the people of Tamriel. Notably, the lamias of Tempest Island took part in the Lamia Invasion of 2E 435, and a group of lamias are thought to have fought against Molag Bal in 2E 582 during the Tamrielic invasion of Coldharbour. Medusas are physically similar to lamias, but otherwise unrelated.

For more information, see the main lore article.

Lilmothiit[edit]

The Lilmothiit (possibly meaning "one who is from Lilmoth"), also called the Fox-Folk, were a vulpine (fox-like) beast race who once inhabited Black Marsh. They were said by some to be related to the Khajiit of Elsweyr. The Lilmothiit were a nomadic tribal group, and left few enduring signs of their existence. They founded the settlement of Blackrose, the ruins of which were later turned into a prison by the Akaviri Potentate Versidue-Shaie in the Second Era.

Similar to the Kothringi, the Lilmothiit became extinct following the devastation of the Knahaten Flu in the mid-Second Era.

For more information, see the main lore article.

Minotaur[edit]

Minotaurs, also called man-bulls or bull-men, are a species of beastfolk with the body of a man and the head of a bull. During the First Era, they were said to have symbolized the Alessian Empire, but in later eras became more commonly perceived as savage monsters by the people of Tamriel.

They have thick grey or sometimes brown skin and large curved horns. Some Minotaurs clothe themselves in a simple loincloth and shawl or wear nose-rings. Others wear intricate leather armor, and some prefer to be completely naked. They are most commonly found in the Colovian Highlands, Great Forest and the Gold Coast regions.

For more information, see the main lore article.

Naga[edit]

The Nagas are a little-known humanoid race that live in Black Marsh, primarily the Murkmire region. Nagas share some similarities in their appearance with the Saxhleel, the most prevalent Argonian race.

They are described as having "huge mouths filled with dripping needle-like fangs". Usually seven to eight feet tall, the Nagas appear to be more snake-like than the Argonians. When the other races were attempting to establish plantations in Argonia, they generally acted as highway robbers; however, following the cessation of these efforts, they have since left the roads and have gone back into the inner swamps.

For more information, see the main lore article.

Orc[edit]

Illustration of a typical Orc male

Orcs, also called Orsimer or "Pariah Folk" in ancient times, are sophisticated, beastlike people of the Wrothgarian Mountains, Dragontail Mountains, Valenwood, and Orsinium (literally translated as "Orc-Town"). They are noted for their unshakable courage in war and their unflinching endurance of hardships. Orcs have elven blood, but are usually considered to be beastfolk. In the past, Orcs have been widely feared and hated by the other nations and races of Tamriel, and were often considered to be goblin-ken. However, they have slowly won acceptance in the Empire, in particular for their distinguished service in the Emperor's Legions. Orc armorers are prized for their craftsmanship, and Orc warriors in heavy armor are among the finest front-line troops in the Empire, and are fearsome when using their berserker rage. Orcs have a lifespan similar to that of humans. Most Imperial citizens regard the Orc society as rough and cruel. The Orcs of the Iliac Bay region have developed their own language, known as Orcish, and have often had their own kingdom, Orsinium.

For more information, see the main lore article.

Sload[edit]

The Sload (sometimes called worms) are a race of sluglike beastfolk living in the Coral Kingdoms of Thras, southwest of Tamriel.

Sload are innately cautious and careful. In their mythic traditions, all heroes spend years planning, considering and consulting with wise Sload before taking the correct action and achieving their goal. By contrast their villains all act quickly or rashly and always fail. The Sload language has no word for 'adventure', and the closest equivalent more accurately means 'tragic disaster'.

Sload apparently do not experience emotions as the Tamrielic races do, but are often skilled at acting and may exaggeratedly simulate them for the benefit of more emotive beings.

They will honor laws, loyalties and friendships only as long as they calculate it to be in their best interests to do so. They also have no compunctions against blasphemy, theft, kidnapping, murder, genocide or anything else that may help them reach their goals.

Sload are apparently not religious in any recognizable sense, but will willingly serve Daedra if they benefit from it. Some, in particular the famed Second Era necromancer N'Gasta, also follow the King of Worms.

For more information, see the main lore article.

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