Lore:Planes of Existence
Within the Aurbis exist a multitude of different Planes of Existence, from the well-known mortal realm of Mundus and the planes of the Daedric Princes, to the mysterious Oblivion pocket realms and the magical planes of Aetherius.
Closely related is the concept of the Outer Realms, a term which usually refers to Aetherius and Oblivion together, but may also include a number of "other, less structured forms" in the Aurbis.
Daedric Princes' Realms
Oblivion contains all the dimensional planes which are home to the Daedra, and can be divided into the sixteen realms of the Daedric Princes, and over 37,000 other planes, chaos realms and pocket realities. The sixteen realms of the Daedric Princes, referred to by the general term Planes of Oblivion, can be very extensive; Molag Bal's plane is described as being a replica of all of Nirn, and Hermaeus Mora's is infinite in size.
Each prince's plane may have a more specific name, such as Apocrypha for Hermaeus Mora's, Coldharbour for Molag Bal's, Moonshadow for Azura's, and Quagmire for Vaermina's. Each plane is supposedly very different in appearance, depending upon the nature of the prince who rules it. They can range from beautiful to desolate; some may not even resemble worlds as we think of them, containing nothing but dust and smoke, or changing constantly.
Apocrypha is a realm of Oblivion created and ruled over by Hermaeus Mora, the Daedric Prince of Knowledge and Fate. It is an endless library consisting of untitled books with black covers, where all forbidden knowledge can be found. The realm is haunted by the ghosts of mortals forever searching for knowledge. Stacks of books form mazes and spiraling pillars that can reach as high as the illuminating green sky. Intricate ruins and monstrous carvings can be found among the stacks. The plane is covered in a sea of acidic, murky waters and roiling tentacles, while Hermaeus Mora is omnipresent over all. Some areas of the realm are consumed by darkness which can kill any who enter it. Discarded pages and floating tomes fill the air.
Apocrypha is inhabited by the frightening Daedric servants of Mora. Seekers guard forbidden knowledge, banishing foes with sound attacks. Lurkers dwell within the acidic waters, arising from the depths to attack invaders. Disembodied tentacles hide in the waters and hang from the sky, whipping at any who pass.
Apart from magical teleportation, Apocrypha is most easily entered by mortals through the reading of Black Books, tomes of forbidden knowledge displaced from time and scattered across Tamriel. An apparition of the reader's body remains in Mundus, tethering their life force. Most mortals who gain access to the secrets within Apocrypha are driven insane by unending revelations. Such was the fate of the mage Morian Zenas, who famously disappeared in Apocrypha during his voyages through Oblivion. However those who successfully journey through Apocrypha are known to discover powerful knowledge.
The realm mostly consists only of dust, palaces of smoke, and vaporous creatures; anguish, betrayal, and broken promises like ash fill the bitter air. Few mortals manage to reach the realm, where levitation and magical breathing are necessary to survive. The Mages Guild have been known to bottle this thick, roiling vapor.
However, some areas of the realm are safe for mortals. Circa 4E 40, Malacath chose to bring Sul and Prince Attrebus Mede to the Ashpit, where they found a garden of slender trees, and "vines festooned with lilylike flowers" wound about the trunks; a "multitude of spheres moved, deep in the colorless sky, as distant and pale as moons". This garden seems to have some emotional significance to Malacath, who describes it as a "shadow of a garden", and an "echo of something that once was".
The Ashen Forge sits at the center of Malacath's own stronghold in the Ashpit. For the Orcs that revere Malacath, the afterlife promises rewards of immortality, abundant food and drink, and constant battle deep within the Ashen Forge. It is also said that The Ashpit bastion stretches endlessly across the planes, extending even behind the stars to Aetherius, granting access to every worthy Orc who crosses from this life into the next. In Malacath's stronghold, every Orc is a chief, every chief has a thousand wives, and every wife has a thousand slaves to cater to their every need. The stronghold's walls rise one hundred feet into the smoky sky, constructed of polished steel and worked iron. Inside the walls, stone keeps, iron towers, and massive longhouses surround the central square that houses the Ashen Forge.
The Spine of Ashpit is a surprisingly light skeletal spine found in the realm. It is made from a grey dust, and fragments of bone have been known to be taken from it and brought to Tamriel. Sheogorath claims that the spine is the metaphorical "backbone" of the realm, and looks down upon it.
Realm of Boethia
The Realm of Boethia is a realm of Oblivion, created and ruled over by Boethia, the Daedric Prince of Deceit. The realm consists of stormy skies, volcanic islands and lava seas, similar to the Deadlands. It has also been described as a country of labyrinthine policy and betrayals, with maze gardens and twisted towers. It is sometimes referred to as Attribution's Share or Snake Mount.
Clavicus Vile's Realm
Clavicus Vile's Realm is a realm of Oblivion, created and ruled over by Clavicus Vile, the Daedric Prince of Wishes. It appears as a tranquil countryside, dotted with majestic cities of glass and ornate buildings and populated by Skaafin. The city of Umbriel was once a part of the realm, but was eventually severed and came to rest in an unnamed realm of Oblivion.
Cyrus the Redguard once visited the realm in 2E 864 to bargain with Vile, who had been given the soul of his sister, Iszara, by the Sload necromancer N'Gasta. Cyrus won the Prince's game and rescued his sister's soul.
In 3E 433, one of Vile's artifacts, the Umbra Sword, was returned to the realm by the Champion of Cyrodiil at the Prince's request. However, Barbas, the Hound of Vile, knew it was a poor decision and attempted to stop its return, as the sword contained a piece of the Prince's power which had gained sentience. The being, who called himself Umbra, escaped the sword once it was brought to the realm, and stole a significant amount of the Prince's power before fleeing to the edge of the realm. To prevent Umbra leaving with his power, Vile sealed the borders of the realm, essentially sealing them all within.
Coldharbour is a realm of Oblivion created and ruled over by Molag Bal, the Daedric Prince of Domination. As befits his sphere, Bal's realm is a desolate, apocalyptic image of Nirn, which is achieved by both mocking imitation and outright theft of parts of the mortal realm. It is inhabited by Daedra and the eternally-tormented souls of mortals called Soul Shriven. Descriptions of the plane vary widely, but all accounts agree that Coldharbour is a dismal, cold, and largely lifeless realm.
The Colored Rooms are a realm of Oblivion, created and ruled over by Meridia, known as the Daedric Prince of Infinite Energies. From what little has been seen of the Colored Rooms, they seem to resemble a cross between a coral reef and a vast field of floating stones, strewn with colorful trails of dust or cloud. The "ground" between the stones looks like luminescent water, but is solid enough to walk on. Aurorans are the spawn of Meridia, although they have close ties to the Ayleids. It can be assumed that they dwell in her realm of Oblivion.
The Colored Rooms were formed when Meridia fled Mundus with her fellow Star-Orphans. However, instead of fleeing to Aetherius, Meridia went into the Void, where she was chided by the Daedric Princes for her trespass. Bending the light of Magnus, Meridia then carved her own sphere from the chaos of the Void, creating a new plane of Oblivion.
The Deadlands are a Daedric realm of Oblivion created and ruled over by the Daedric Prince of Destruction, Mehrunes Dagon. The embodiment of its creator's sphere, the dimension is fraught with natural disasters and destructive change. The realm is covered by an ocean of lava, scattered with scorched volcanic islands and ruined structures. Many lesser Daedra roam the realm freely, but Dremora dominate the hierarchy. Very little flora grow in the realm's hostile environment. Burnt grass and dead trees dot the landscape, while Bloodgrass, aggressive Harrada Roots and poisonous Spiddal Plants grow abundantly in the charred soil.
The Evergloam is a realm of Oblivion, created and ruled over by Nocturnal, the Daedric Prince of Shadow. It is a realm of perpetual twilight, and the "cradle of shadow". The Evergloam has several pocket realms, including the Shade Perilous and the Crow's Wood.
The Ebonmere is a portal linked to the Evergloam, which acts as Nocturnal's conduit on Tamriel. It is located in the Twilight Sepulcher, an ancient temple in Skyrim. The Ebonmere is held open by the Skeleton Key, although the artifact has often been stolen from the Sepulcher by mortals. The Nightingales are a secretive subgroup of the Thieves Guild, who pledge their souls to Nocturnal and guard both the Ebonmere and the Skeleton Key. When a Nightingale dies, it is believed that their soul becomes one with the shadows. As long as the Ebonmere remains open, the souls of dead Nightingales can "walk with the shadows" and bring luck to thieves. As Agents of Nocturnal, Nightingales are permitted to "drink" from the Ebonmere and obtain powerful abilities.
The Hunting Grounds
The Hunting Grounds is a realm of Oblivion created and ruled over by Hircine, the Daedric Prince of the Hunt. It has been described as a realm of dense woodland and vast grasslands populated by werebears, wild cattle and unicorns. It is full of endless mazes inhabited by vicious creatures such as bears, wolves, werecreatures, and Daedra. These creatures are generally much larger than their counterparts in the mortal realm.
Skaal folklore states that during the Bloodmoon Prophecy, Hircine and his hounds preyed upon entire tribes of men and took them to the Hunting Grounds where they would be hunted down by the inhabitants. Other tales state that a single man is taken into his realm as his prey, and if he can last through the Bloodmoon, Hircine returns to his realm for another era.
The souls of lycanthropes are claimed by Hircine and spend eternity experiencing the thrill of the hunt in his Hunting Grounds. However, it is possible for a soul to transfer to the proper afterlife (such as Sovngarde) if their lycanthropy is cured posthumously. During the daylight hours, werebears and fierce Nords stalk the land in their continual Hunt. When the sun sinks below the horizon, Hircine announces himself with a pack of werewolves to take his turn in the cycle.
Moonshadow is a realm of Oblivion, created and ruled over by Azura, the Daedric Prince of Twilight. The realm is so beautiful that visiting mortals are half-blinded. The realm contains flowers and waterfalls, majestic trees, and a city of silver. The wind smells of perfume, and the realm is known to have rain. Azura lives in a rose palace, and is welcoming to mortal travelers.
The Myriad Realms of Revelry
The Myriad Realms of Revelry are a congeries of one hundred thousand pocket and sub-realms of Oblivion, created and ruled over by the Daedric Prince of Indulgence, Sanguine. The realms are used mainly as pleasure pockets, refashioned to meet the needs and desires of its visitants. As such, Sanguine himself has very little control over them.
The Last Dragonborn visited one of the realms in 4E 201. Named Misty Grove, it appeared as a mist-filled copse of trees crossed by burbling streams and paths with small stone bridges, lit by lanterns in an eternal early evening. Sanguine used it to host a feast for the Dragonborn, after the two had spent a night drunkenly exploring Skyrim.
The Pits is a realm of Oblivion, created and ruled over by Peryite, the Daedric Prince of Pestilence. Here, Peryite guards the lowest orders of Oblivion. The realm resembles the Deadlands, with lava seas, volcanic islands and ruined structures. The realm is usually completely inaccessible to mortals, but there have been several exceptions.
The Shivering Isles
The Shivering Isles, also called the Madhouse or the Asylums, is the Daedric realm of Sheogorath, Prince of Madness. The realm consists of a main landmass surrounded by a group of smaller islands, the area of which is divided in half: the northern half of these lands is called Mania, and the southern half Dementia. This divide represents Sheogorath's split personality, the "two shades of madness". The isles are inhabited by mortals as well as Daedra, but they have been driven insane.
The Spiral Skein
It is metaphysically constructed in a similar manner to Nirn's Wheel. At the center is the Tower, known only as the Pillar Palace of Mephala, since its true name is too awful to be uttered. The Spokes are called the Eight Strands of the Skein, and the spaces in between are each devoted to a different sin. The first is a cavern devoted to lies, filled with pedestals pretending to hold up the sky. The second is made up of cramped chambers representing envy, while the third is maggot-filled grottoes filled with seductive light. The fourth contains eternally dark tunnels of fear; the fifth, a place of betrayal; the sixth, an arena of murder. The seventh space is home to arcades of avarice and appetite, containing all things mortals would kill or die for, while the eighth is a flaming skein of fury, representing the death that comes to all mortals.
Quagmire, or the Dreamstride, is a realm of Oblivion, created and ruled over by the Daedric Prince of Nightmare, Vaermina. It is a realm of horrors, where reality shifts upon itself in seemingly impossible ways. Every few minutes, lightning flashes and the realm morphs into a terrifying scene, each one more frightening than the last.
It is the realm most often visited by mortals. From her citadel in the center of the realm, Vaermina reaches out into Mundus and collects the memories of sleeping mortals, leaving nothing but visions of horror and despair. These experiences, known as nightmares, involve the mind of a mortal traveling to Quagmire. Through magical teleportation, it is possible for a mortal to enter Quagmire while awake, as was done by the mage Morian Zenas.
A cult of wealthy Daedra worshippers were once rewarded by Vaermina with a small pocket of Quagmire. Using a mining operation at Hozzin's Folly on Bleakrock Isle as cover, the family successfully created a portal to the realm and consecrated an "Unspeakable Sigil" within, seemingly to maintain the pocket. Work began on constructing a temple to Vaermina within the realm, but the pocket remained much smaller than the worshippers had expected and scamps began to appear both inside the realm and within the mine on Tamriel. After a disastrous ritual, Hozzin's Folly was left abandoned, and the pocket realm was destroyed in 2E 582 when the portal was reopened and the sigil smashed.
Quagmire and Mundus have been known to partially merge where Vaermina's influence is strong, usually in the area surrounding one of her artifacts. The island of Skald's Retreat briefly merged with the realm in 2E 582, sending its inhabitants into a deep sleep. In 3E 433, the Orb of Vaermina was stolen by the wizard Arkved, who brought it to his tower in the Nibenay Basin. The interior of the tower seemed to enter Quagmire, with reality becoming warped inside. In 4E 201, the town of Dawnstar was plagued by continuous nightmares due to the close proximity of the Skull of Corruption.
Other Realms of Oblivion
There are over 37,000 pocket realms of Oblivion with drastically varying purposes. Some are created by Daedric Princes as a prison or purgatory, while others are the homes of certain lesser Daedra.
Chimera of Desolation
The Chimera of Desolation is a small, lordless realm created by Mehrunes Dagon, who threw Caecilly Island (a small island off the coast of Northmoor) into the void as an act of revenge against Chimere, a mortal conjurer living there. The abandoned town of Trybador still stands on the desolate island.
Fourth Sinus of Takubar
The Fourth Sinus of Takubar (also known as DOP 9497.15, called Takubar for short) is a pocket realm of Oblivion, and the home of the Cold-Flame Atronachs. It is a realm of extreme cold, where the material bonds of the bedrock slide apart to flow like lava. It is the inversion of Infernace, a realm of extreme heat. Takubar was discovered by the denizens of Coldharbour after Molag Bal banished common Flame Atronachs from his realm. Frost Mares are theorized to originate from this plane.
It can be assumed that Takubar, like Infernace, is a 'collective realm', a highly organized realm of Oblivion created not by a single Daedra, but as a collective extension of its numerous, less-powerful inhabitants. This type of realm is considered relatively exceptional, although they're also rather mundane and uniform.
Gaiar Alata (generally referred to as "Paradise" by its inhabitants), is a realm created by Mankar Camoran with the use of the Mysterium Xarxes, a book of evil power written by Mehrunes Dagon. Gaiar Alata contains pleasant islands with gardens and Ayleid-style buildings. Although it seems to be a paradise, its inhabitants are continually slaughtered by resident beasts after which they are resurrected. Underneath the idyllic landscape there are torturing chambers where the less faithful Mythic Dawn cultists are kept. Gaiar Alata dissolved after Mankar Camoran's death during the Oblivion Crisis.
The Havoc Wellhead is a realm of Oblivion controlled by many Daedric clans in the service of Mehrunes Dagon. It was accessible from the Battlespire, but the connection was lost after its destruction during the Imperial Simulacrum. The forces of Mehrunes Dagon used the realm as a headquarters during the invasion of the Battlespire.
Infernace (also known as DOP 6) is a pocket realm of Oblivion. It is a realm of extreme heat and molten rock, and is the home of the Flame Atronachs. It is well known to all conjurers due to the ability to summon subservient atronachs from the realm. The Fourth Sinus of Takubar, a realm of extreme cold, is an inversion of Infernace.
Despite being considered a highly-organized and physical realm, the reality of Infernace is not a projection of the mind of any particular Daedra. Instead, it was created as an extension of its Flame Atronach inhabitants. Realms such as Infernace are termed 'collective realms', and are considered relatively exceptional. However, collective realms are also rather mundane and uniform, and the endless magma and fumaroles of Infernace are no exception.
The clan structure of Infernace is unknown, and no hierarchy has been observed due to the difficulties involved in distinguishing individual Flame Atronachs. The realm may have come under the rule of Mehrunes Dagon during the invasion of the Battlespire, when the Flame Atronachs swore allegiance to Shardai Clan. The realm was once visited by the Demiprince Fa-Nuit-Hen.
Lord Velian's Plane
It was created through necromantic ritual after the villagers of Eagle's Brook, in the Cambray Hills region of High Rock, were turned into zombies. The realm was a copy of the village, filled with ruined houses and writhing vines. The sky was orange, and the only inhabitants were banekin and Velian's shade.
The local mage, Merien Sellan, learned of Velian's ritual and entered the pocket realm to stop him. He allowed himself to be willingly captured in order to collapse the plane, killing himself in the process. His son Tamien asked the Soulless One to enter the realm and kill Velian, allowing Merien to escape before the collapse but also allowing the cultists to leave with the zombie army by ship. It is unknown if Merien was rescued, although the realm was collapsed regardless.
Maelstrom is the realm of Demiprince Fa-Nuit-Hen, the Multiplier of Motions Known. It appears in the style of an arena where mortal challengers can battle the demiprince's Barons of Move Like This in rounds reminiscent of other Daedric or Tamrielic locales.
Realm of the Hist
The realm of the Hist is said to be a mysterious realm of Oblivion. It is a lush world, filled with sentient trees. Relatives of these trees include the Hist of Mundus and Clavicus Vile's realm. The Hist supposedly came to Tamriel from this realm in the Dawn Era. The realm is inhabited by Wisperills, colorful luminescent films that dance in the air.
Tamrielic mythology states that, despite the Hists' neutrality, the realm of the Hist was mostly destroyed as the Ehlnofey war passed over it. A small corner of the realm survived and became Black Marsh, but the rest was sunk beneath the sea. This may imply that Black Marsh is a fragment of the realm, which was somehow sundered by the creation of Mundus.
In the early Fourth Era, a large chunk of Clavicus Vile's realm was separated from the rest by Umbra. This bubble of Oblivion contained Umbriel, a floating island. Umbriel had its own population of Hist, as well as humanoids created by the second ingenium. In 4E 40, following Umbriel's invasion of Tamriel, a group of heroes infiltrated the island and successfully banished the island back to Oblivion by destroying the ingenium and killing Umbra. Among these heroes was Mere-Glim, an Argonian who was reborn within Umbriel, resulting in a connection with both the Hist of Umbriel and the Hist of Tamriel.
When Umbriel was returned to Oblivion, the Hist there guided it to the realm of the Hist. Although it was no longer capable of flight, the island and the city on top were supported by the thick covering of trees and settled deep into the boggy ground. The lords and chefs of Umbriel turned to anarchy and tried to kill each other, but many of the skraws and fringe workers left Umbriel to make a living elsewhere in the realm. Mere-Glim and Fhena were among those who attempted to make a new life in the realm. A distant spire can be seen from the site of Umbriel, although it is unknown if it is an old building or simply a rock.
Sadal's Prison is a small pocket realm of Oblivion, created by the Chimer to imprison Sadal, one of the Brothers of Strife. It can be entered from the caldera of the Tormented Spire in Varanis. It is a realm of lava and rock, scattered with Daedric ruins.
In 2E 582, Tanval Indoril attempted to free Sadal from his prison following the death of his son at the hands of the Daggerfall Covenant invaders. The forces of the Ebonheart Pact followed him to the Tormented Spire and talked him out of it. A small force including Tanval then entered Sadal's Prison and defeated him, allowing Sadal's flame atronach guardians to bind him anew. Tanval was slain in the battle after sacrificing himself.
The Soul Cairn is a realm of Oblivion filled with the trapped souls of mortal dead. Rather than being ruled over by any Daedric Prince, it is controlled by mysterious beings that call themselves the Ideal Masters. When a soul is captured by a Soul Gem, it is transported to the Soul Cairn to roam for eternity. The Ideal Masters believe that, by freeing mortals from life and dooming them to eternal undeath, they are being saved from meaningless hardship and gifted with peace. The Soul Cairn is filled with all manner of undead. Some forms are unique to the realm, such as Bonemen, Mistmen, and Wrathmen. Powerful mages once summoned undead minions from the realm using conjuration magic, but these spells were forgotten over time. In their hunger for souls, the Ideal Masters often strike deals with necromancers. In return for souls, the necromancers are given the ability to summon armies of undead from the realm, although they often fall prey to the Masters and end up trapped in the realm themselves.
In order to enter the Soul Cairn, a mortal usually must be dead. This can be achieved by partial soul trapping, or by becoming undead. The realm was once accessible from the voidgate of the Battlespire, but the link was severed after the citadel was destroyed.
Village of the Lost
The Village of the Lost is a border realm of Coldharbour, created and ruled over by Molag Bal, the Daedric Prince of Domination. It formed during the Planemeld when Molag Bal attempted to fuse Coldharbour and Mundus. Although not part of Coldharbour proper, three villages were pulled from Tamriel and landed in the realm after being fooled by deals with Dremora. These included a small township in Vvardenfell named Silver Run, along with the Khajiiti village of Khaj'yahai and the Orcish village of Dushnikh's Shadow. These villages were then scattered among islands of floating rock, and the villagers' souls were stolen. As it materialized, the realm was entirely covered in Azure Plasma, unformed chaotic creatia common in Coldharbour, from which all Oblivion matter is formed.
The leaders of the three villages— Suronii, Zirani and Ugorz— had survived the initial merging and remained as Soul Shriven. Daedra and undead also flocked to the new realm in great number to protect it. In 2E 582, a Tamrielic force invaded Coldharbour in an attempt to halt the Planemeld. Adventurers poured through a portal into the Village of the Lost, slaying many of its Daedric guardians, including the Daedric Titan Zatalguch. The souls of the village leaders were also freed by the adventurers. A servant of Meridia named Mezha-dro came to the realm to seal tears in Oblivion and prevent any more parts of Tamriel from slipping into the realm.
Realms of Aetherius
The Far Shores is the afterlife sought by the Redguards. According to Yokudan myth, Satakal, the serpentine God of Everything, eats itself over and over, periodically consuming all of creation. By "moving at strange angles" to stride between "worldskins", a process known as the Walkabout, the strongest of the spirits learned to bypass this cycle of destruction. Thanks to Ruptga's guidance, many weaker spirits were able to find their way as well, and the practice became so easy that it became a place—the Far Shores. Here, the spirits can safely wait until Satakal has passed and a new skin has emerged. There is no hunger or thirst in the Far Shores, but there are ample martial challenges to keep Redguard warrior-spirits engaged for eternity.
The Mantellan Crux is a small, self-contained world located in Aetherius that served as the prison of the Mantella after it was blasted from Mundus by Zurin Arctus. It is designed as a giant puzzle to test those who would seek the heart of Numidium, and is inhabited by fearsome Daedra and undead. The Blind God, a giant skull, dwells here. The Agent retrieved the Mantella from here in 3E 417, just prior to the event known as the Warp in the West.
Sands Behind the Stars
The Sands Behind the Stars, also known as Llesw'er, is the realm to which the souls of Khajiit travel at the end of their days. Described as a paradise promised to the Khajiit by the Riddle'Thar, souls are carried there by Khenarthi's embrace, as long as they have followed the true path of the moons. It is said that the realm is filled with dunes formed of sugar, and a "warmth without end". Legends state that the name "Llesw'er" may have been the inspiration for name of the Khajiiti homeland, Elsweyr.
Sovngarde is the part of Aetherius where Nords go to after death. It is ruled by Shor and contains the Hall of Valor, a supposedly gigantic feasting hall where the mead "flows like a waterfall". Except in rare cases where one forces a way into Sovngarde, it can supposedly only be reached by true Nords who die valiantly or in battle, regardless of personality. This excludes those afflicted with Lycanthropy, as Hircine takes them to his Hunting Grounds instead.
In 2E 582, Fildgor Orc-Thane used his royal blood to enter Sovngarde, and attempted to fuse his soul with that of his dead sister Nurnhilde in order to usurp the throne. In 4E 201, Alduin retreated there to ensnare and feast upon the souls of the dead. He was killed by the Last Dragonborn, who fought alongside the spirits of Gormlaith Golden-Hilt, Felldir the Old and Hakon One-Eye.
Realms of Mundus
Arkay is one of the eight major planets. Its light helps protect Nirn from necromantic rituals, although it is blocked by the Necromancer's Moon every seven days. It is one of three Dominion Planets that make up the Guardian Constellations. Specifically, Arkay is the eye of the Thief.[OOG 1]
Baar Dau (also known as the Ministry of Truth or Lie Rock) was a celestial rock or moonlet which hovered above Vivec City in southern Vvardenfell. According to the prevailing legends, it was flung from the Void by either Sheogorath or its own malevolence, but was prevented from crashing into the city by the Tribunal god Vivec. Vivec allowed it to remain looming above the city so that if its people ever ceased to love him, the rock would fall and destroy them. Other lesser-known tales and theories vary widely as to Baar Dau's origins, with one identifying it as a former Magna Ge named Una, another insisting that it was an egg from which would one day emerge the nightmarish offspring of Vivec and Molag Bal, and yet another claiming that it was Malacath's dung.
Baar Dau originally rested higher in the sky, but plunged dramatically in 2E 583, when Vivec's power was temporarily drained. The moonlet remained aloft only tenuously, showering Vivec City with burning fragments. After Vivec regained his power, he kept Baar Dau in its new position, just above the High Fane of the Temple Canton. Some time later, Baar Dau was hollowed out by the Tribunal Temple and became the Ministry of Truth, where the Temple would imprison dissident priests and attempt to reform them. The high-security prison was accessible only through levitation, and was directed by a Grand Inquisitor. The main areas were the Hall of Processing and the Prison Keep. Temple pilgrims offered levitation potions at the Shrine of Daring, which was dedicated to Vivec stopping the moon from destroying the city.
Early in the Fourth Era, after the disappearance of Vivec, the magic keeping Baar Dau afloat began to weaken. Two Dunmer, Sul and Vuhon, created an ingenium, a soul-powered device which supported the rock. It was created by making a pact with Clavicus Vile, who had a penchant for souls. Hundreds of captured souls were needed to run the machine, but eventually living people were used. Only the people with the strongest souls were sacrificed. Ilzheven, Sul's love, was sacrificed by Vuhon, and the ingenium was destroyed when Sul attempted to rescue her. In 4E 5, without anything holding it up, Baar Dau resumed its long-delayed fall, returning to the momentum it had before being halted. This obliterated the city of Vivec, leaving a crater which would become Scathing Bay. In turn, the impact created tsunamis which ravaged mainland Morrowind and caused Red Mountain to erupt, devastating Vvardenfell. The disaster of the Red Year effectively ended the ascendancy of the Tribunal Temple and the mainstream worship of the Tribunal as gods.
The realm of Battlespire, the magical academy of the battlemages, is located in a thin slipstream between Oblivion and Mundus. It acted as a sort of proving ground and testing facility for the Shadow Legion, the Imperial Battlemages. It could be accessed via the Pillar of Light, a teleportation device linked to the Weir Gate. The Battlespire has been in existence since at least the Second Era. The stronghold was attacked by invading Daedra during the Imperial Simulacrum, all of whom bore the Daedric Crescent. The Battlespire was destroyed during the invasion's aftermath. The Empire later reclaimed the ruined Battlespire, and gathered up all the Daedric Crescents to be destroyed—all but one.
Julianos is one of the eight major planets. The planet Stendarr orbits it. It is one of three Dominion Planets that make up the Guardian Constellations. Specifically, Julianos is the eye of the Mage.[OOG 1]
Kynareth is one of the eight major planets.
The Necromancer's Moon
The Necromancer's Moon, also known as the Revenant, is a moon created during the Warp in the West when Mannimarco used the power of the Numidium to become a god. It eclipses the planet Arkay every seven days, stopping its light from reaching Nirn. During this time, the moon shines with a purple light known as the Shade of the Revenant, which is used by the Order of the Black Worm to create black soul gems.
Nirn (believed to mean 'Arena' in Ehlnofex) is the planet on which the Elder Scrolls is set. It floats in the void of Oblivion and is, for all intents and purposes, the majority of the realm known as Mundus. Sources often use the terms Nirn and Mundus synonymously, despite the technical differences in the two terms. Nirn was created during the Dawn Era by the Aedra and Anu-aligned spirits, based on Lorkhan's inspiration and Magnus' designs.
The greater of Nirn's two moons, Masser, or Jode, is acknowledged as one of the attendant spirits of the mortal plane, and, as such, is both temporal and subject to the bounds of mortality. Masser, which exists as a separate plane, has long since perished; it was Masser's death which led mortals to perceive it as having both texture and limited size, as well as a reddish hue, all of which are the results of its decay from its former investiture of pure white.
While regarded by various cultures as an attendant spirit of their god planet, minor god, or foreign god, Masser is not displayed within Dwemer orreries, neither does it hold a position within the pantheon of Imperial gods. In Khajiiti culture, walking the Path of Jode is a necessary step for a Lunar Champion seeking to become the Mane. Under the influence of moon sugar vapors, the Moon Hallowed guides the Lunar Champion through an aspect of Masser known as the Demi-Plane of Jode, which shapes itself to show visions of the future to those who walk along the path.
The lesser of Nirn's two moons, Secunda, or Jone, is acknowledged as one of the attendant spirits of the mortal plane, and, as such, is both temporal and subject to the bounds of mortality. Secunda, which exists as a separate plane, has long since perished; it was Secunda's death which led mortals to perceive it as having both texture and limited size, as well as imperfections of color, all of which are the results of its decay from its former investiture of pure white.
While regarded by various cultures as an attendant spirit of their god planet, minor god, or foreign god, Secunda is not displayed within Dwemer orreries, neither does it hold a position within the pantheon of Imperial gods. In Khajiiti culture, walking the Path of Jone is a necessary step for a Lunar Champion seeking to become the Mane.
The Dark Moon
The Dark Moon, also known as the Dead Moon or Den of Lorkhaj, is a representation of the legendary "third moon" in Khajiiti culture which is said to herald the birth of a new Mane. The Dark Moon appears during a rare alignment of Masser and Secunda, and is thought to be a third aspect of the decaying corpse of Lorkhaj. Where Jode and Jone govern the fate of true Khajiit, the Dark Moon governs the fate of the dro-m'Athra, the souls of fallen Khajiit who are condemned on death to serve the Heart of Lorkhaj "until their tails are straight". It is believed that the spirit of a so-called "bent cat" is brought to the realm by Namiira. Walking the Path of Lorkhaj is the final step that a Lunar Champion must take in their journey to become the Mane. The Champion is guided through the Den of Lorkhaj by the Moon Hallowed.
The Five Finger Dance
The Five Finger Dance is the realm of Baan Dar the Bandit God, a trickster spirit of thieves and beggars, and the Pariah of the Khajiit. In his realm, he holds an eternal party for bandits, pranksters and merrymakers. It resembles the Reaper's March region of Tamriel.
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, 3rd Edition: Arena Supermundus: The Tapestry of Heaven — Imperial Geographical Society, 3E 432
- The Monomyth
- Daedra Dossier: Cold-Flame Atronach — Denogorath the Dread Archivist
- Trail and Tide — Moon Bishop Hunal
- Litter-Mates of Darkness — Moon-Bishop Hunal
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, 3rd Edition: Sugar and Blood: the Cats of the South — Imperial Geographical Society, 3E 432
- The Orrery in Oblivion
- Necromancer's Moon
Note: the following references are not found in-game. They are included to provide a rounder background to this article, but may not reflect established lore.