Lore:Colovia

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Colovia
Type Region
Continent Tamriel
Province Cyrodiil
Appears in Oblivion, ESO
One of many Ayleid ruins in Colovia
The Imperial Province
"The West is respected as Cyrodiil's iron hand: firm, unwavering, and ever-vigilant. The Cyro-Nords that settled it had relinquished the fertile Nibenay Valley long ago, determined to conquer the frontier. Their primitive ferocity was disinclined to magic or the need for industry, preferring bloody engagement and plunder instead."Imperial Geographic Society, "Pocket Guide to the Empire, 1st Edition/Cyrodiil"

Colovia (also known as the Colovian West,[1] Old Colovia,[2] and the Imperial West)[3] is the western half of the province of Cyrodiil, known for their austere, hard-working, and self-sufficient people, the frontier-men of Colovia. The Imperials of Colovia are strong-headed and hard working, with a rich martial tradition and strong work ethic. Many serve in the Imperial Legion, either as soldiers or commanders,[1] and Colovian Timber is highly prized for both construction and weaponry.[4]

Colovia features rugged hillscapes throughout the Gold Road, dense greenery in and around the Great Forest, and wide swathes of open grasslands throughout the Imperial Reserve, which is famous for its bountiful hunting grounds. Most of the Colovian population live in the major cities, but some, particularly the nobility, tend to live in private estates closer to the Gold Coast,[5] while various farms and roadside inns dot the landscape. Colovia has also been described as a coastal jungle.[1] Though Colovia's borders have shifted throughout the eras, traditionally, it contains four counties and their cities: Anvil, Chorrol, Kvatch, Skingrad, and formerly Sutch.

History[edit]

For the history of the province, see the: History of Cyrodiil

Early History[edit]

The largest ruin in Cyrodiil, Miscarcand
The exterior of Garlas Malatar

Before the Colovians lived in the Cyrodilic West, the region contained the western-half of the once almighty Ayleid Empire. Many great city-states and kingdoms dotted the landscape, such as the prosperous Ceyatatar[6] and the independent state of Lindai.[7] One of the most powerful nations from the west was Miscarcand, the great capital of a mighty kingdom.[8] However, all of these once-powerful countries fell to the whim of the First Cyrodilic Empire and have either tried to retaliate or broker alliances with them, but in time, they were all abandoned. For example, the home of the Guiding Light, Garlas Malatar, sealed itself away from the outside world and was sacked by the Alessians only from the outside. It perished from the inside by unknown means.[9] The remaining Ayleids in Colovia either became servants of the people that soon took over,[10] or continued to live on in tribes as the Wild Elves, far from the civilizations of Tamriel.[11]

In the years that followed the Alessian Slave Rebellion, the land was soon populated by the Nedes and later the ancient Cyro-Nords. The former had built port-cities along the Strident Coast. Meanwhile, the latter had come to Colovia hoping to conquer the newly-established frontier, and distance themselves from the use of magic or the need for industry in the Nibenay. They preferred the engagement and plundering lifestyle like their predecessors in Skyrim. After they dominated the Nedic society of Colovia,[1] they became more unified and formed great kingdoms that continue to thrive in the present-day, such as Skingrad and Kvatch. These countries were typically ruled by a King,[10] but some (such as Kvatch) were also governed by a regency council of three lords.[12] They also took their conquest to the seas, as far away as the Blue Divide and the Iliac Bay, where they annually raided ports for roughly seven centuries until the arrival of the Ra Gada in 1E 808.[1][13] Sometime after Alessia's reign, the monkey-prophet, Marukh emerged from the coastal jungles of Colovia and preached to the masses of his experiences with the "Enlightened One", ushering a new religious movement that became the Alessian Order. At the height of the Order's influence, the West founded an autonomous government called the Colovian Estates, which had firmly established a solid position, both geographically and politically that resisted the East and their doctrines. From then on, these two faces of Cyrodiil had forever changed the perception of the province from the outside.[1]

King Rislav Larich; The Righteous Son of Colovia[edit]

Statue of Rislav the Righteous

These two identities first clashed in 1E 478 when the royal family of Skingrad succumbed to a deadly plague, and the throne was given to the oldest surviving child, Dorald Larich. Dorald had returned after his tenure as an Alessian priest in the Imperial City, and his first edict on the first day of his reign was to cede the independent kingdom of Skingrad to the First Empire. The reaction across the Colovian Estates was shock and outrage, and all the more so in the Court of Kvatch where his younger brother, Rislav Larich was the prince. Prince Rislav and his wife, Princess Belene rode east with his father-in-law's cavalry to confront his brother. Rislav faced Dorald in the castle courtyard. In typical Colovian fashion, Rislav executed his brother on the spot instead of holding a trial. By right of combat, Rislav Larich was named the King of Skingrad and openly rebelled against the Alessian Empire and their methods. Emperor Gorieus and his armies poured onto the west "like a flood of death", with numbers that far exceeded the requirement to conquer a ruined Colovia.[10]

Kvatch's monument to Rislav

The Alessians anticipated little resistance, and eventually a surrender from the Colovians and an ill-experienced King Rislav. But the Colovian monarch called to arms and prepared a plan to thwart the Emperor. Both armies met at a low pass along what is now the Gold Road. Before Gorieus' personal guards would arrest the King, Rislav signaled his archers to rain a storm of arrows onto the pass and escaped westward. With nowhere to run, the Imperial Army was left devastated by the surprise attack, and they were forced to pursue Rislav northwest into the southern Colovian Highlands. As their armies became smaller and smaller, they were met by King Justinius of Kvatch and a volley of arrows from his troops. The Emperor's army had greatly dwindled and were forced to retreat into the Imperial Reserve before they returned to Nibenay. Rislav's resounding victory was the beginning of the end for the Alessian Hegemony, as the other Colovian kingdoms joined Skingrad and Kvatch in their rebellion. The battle also inspired the likes of the Direnni, who retaliated against the Alessians in the Battle of Glenumbria Moors around 1E 480. King Rislav Larich became a hero in the eyes of the West and earned the sobriquet of Rislav the Righteous. His likeness is a treasured landmark in Skingrad's Hightown.[10]

Bendu Olo and the All-Flags Navy[edit]

Anvil Castle, constructed following Bendu Olo's victory
The Lost Fleet of the All-Flags Navy

By the turn of the twenty-third century in the First Era, the tension between the East and the West persisted, but for a long time, they were part of one Empire. While the Nibenese flourished in their wealth, the Colovians trudged onward. The Colovian Estates had expanded beyond Cyrodiil in the past several centuries, incorporating other settlements across the region like the shanty-port of Anvil, the northern hold of Falkreath, and other places like Delodiil and Sarchal.[14] However, in 1E 2200, all of Western Tamriel faced severe casualties when the Thrassian Plague decimated half of the continent's population,[15] and obliterated ancient established dominions like the sixteen kingdoms of Elsweyr[16] and the sovereignty of Summerset's kinlords.[17]

After sixty years of suffering, the Colovian King of Anvil, Bendu Olo gathered world leaders and warriors to the island of Stirk, to assemble one of the largest naval forces in history, the All-Flags Navy.[18] The fleet was led by Baron-Admiral Olo and its ranks came from every corner of the continent, even from distant Black Marsh.[19] Historical figures were also present in the invasion, including Baron-Captain Olsien Guy Mard of Evermore[20] and the Aldmeri Warlock, Syrabane.[21] They sailed westward across the Sea of Pearls to sack the isles of Thras, and slaughtered any Sload in sight. By the end of the siege, the archipelago had sunk into the sea, and the All-Flags Navy was victorious.[15] Bendu Olo and the fleet returned to Tamriel, and while his home city started to expand from a collection of ramshackle huts to a fully-fledged city, news of his efforts had spread across the realms. The Colovian Estates had greatly overshadowed Nibenay,[1] and even started to trade with the Redguards.[22]

The Schism of Cyrodiil and the Light of Man[edit]

Sancre Tor, the birthplace of Reman I
The Imperial City

Colovia's victory over the Sload of Thras had led to their dissolution from the Alessian Order, which along with internal conflict from the order itself, led to the War of Righteousness in 1E 2321. For a decade, the two faces of Cyrodiil clashed and by 1E 2331, the order and the First Empire had disbanded.[1] What followed was four hundred years of separation and each side were shadows of their former glory. The Colovian kings were taken by their greed and pride, and became more like thief-barons, forsaking their covenants.[14]

King Hrol of lost Twil received visions of an invasion in the near future and sought to heal the borders of his forebears with his western knights. In their journey, they met the spirit of Alessia, who wielded the dragonfire of Akatosh and the Amulet of Kings. When she fled north, they scoured the land to find her until only Hrol and his shieldthane found her in the Colovian-Jerall region. The shieldthane witnessed the spirit undress itself in front of the king and copulate on a mound of mud. He then carved onto a rock, "AND HROL DID LOVE UNTO A HILLOCK" before dying on sight. The other knights discovered Hrol dead on the mound and parted ways after, either going mad or returning to Twil ashamed of their lord. Nine months later, the mound turned into a small mountain and was surrounded by a community of shepherds and bulls, who named it Sancre Tor. One fateful day, the shepherdess, Sed-Yenna scaled the mountain when she heard cries of a baby. At the top, she found an infant with the Amulet of Kings on his forehead. She named him Reman, the "Light of Man," and took him to the Ruby Throne in the White-Gold Tower, where he said, "I am Cyrodiil come.[14]

Colovia in the Second Empire[edit]

Pale Pass
The Colovian town of Southpoint

Reman is described as a "proud son of the West," like Bendu Olo before him. When the First Akaviri Invasion occurred in 1E 2703, he gathered the disparaged Colovians and rallied the Niben Valley's armies to meet the Tsaesci invaders at the Pale Pass. Reman unified the two faces of Cyrodiil and created the cosmopolitan Second Empire.[1] The Empire incorporated aspects of Colovia, as well as High Rock, Nibenay, and the strange but sophisticated cultures of the Akaviri.[23] At some point in time, relations between the Second Empire and the Colovian West were strained until Empress Herda improved them. This change in development gave the Empire extra leeway in their conquest for Valenwood, and their efforts paid off after centuries of war, when they managed to annex the province in 1E 2714 with the aid of the Thrassian Plague.[24]

When Reman's Empire came to fruition, it also saw the restructuring of the Imperial Legion, which also bore influences from the Akaviri.[1] Colovian countrymen served in the Imperial Legion and some of their greatest contributions took place in the Empire's annexation of Valenwood. The Colovians left some significant impact on the Kingdom of Grahtwood, specifically along the southern coast. The ancient settlement of Haven was reconstructed in the Colovian-style and it became a dominant power in the region,[25] especially when it was given independence under a Treethane by the Empire.[24] Despite that, it was later overtaken by the port-town of Southpoint to the west, built by a Colovian soldier named Zantonius in 1E 2729. It has since become the center of Imperial culture in all of Valenwood,[26] as well as the seat of a kingdom by the late-Third Era.[27] When the Colovians fought the Redguards in the War of Rihad circa 1E 2818, they utilized Wood Elf archers that proved to be too undisciplined and prone to desertion for further use.[28]

The Interregnum and Varen Aquilarios[edit]

Varen's Wall Eastern Gatehouse
Duke Varen Aquilarios of Kvatch

After many prosperous years under the Second Empire, the province of Cyrodiil was split once again with the assassination of Potentate Savirien-Chorak in 2E 431. Not only was Cyrodiil torn asunder, but it became no-man's land, a realm ruled by bandit-kings and false emperors. This long and tumultuous time in the Second Era was known as the Interregnum,[23] and while the province was left disheveled with no figurehead,[29] the Elder Council continued their service to the people. By the sixth century, Councilor Itinia served as Colovia's representative in the council and its affairs.[30]

Sometime in the mid-Second Era, Durcorach the Black Drake descended from the Reach in the north and took control of the Imperial City in 2E 533. Councilor Itinia was able to keep her position in the Elder Council with full confidence from Emperor Durcorach.[30] His ruling dynasty was known as the Longhouse Emperors and their Empire lasted longer than others before it, but because of their background and heritage, their rule was not recognized by the people of Cyrodiil.[29] The relationship between the people and Longhouse Emperors was shaky, but tension reached its boiling point when Emperor Leovic revealed the Great Spirit Proclamation, which declared that worship of the Daedric Princes was legal and protected by the Empire. In secret, Duke Varen Aquilarios of Colovia made contact with the Emperor's Grand Chancellor, Abnur Tharn of Nibenay and together they plotted their revolution against the Emperor.[29][31]

Duke Varen inspired the Colovians and rallied them to his cause, with his largest stream of support coming from the old nobility of Chorrol, Kvatch, and Skingrad.[32] But before he could advance onward to the capital, he felt that he needed to defend his homeland, the Gold Coast. The Duke enlisted the famed architect, Juros Truptor and ordered his followers to build a stone wall between the Gold Coast and the rest of Colovia. The project enlisted many paid workers, an endless slew of volunteers, and every bit of stone available. From rough-hewn stone to mismatched rock and stone confiscated from noble estates, strategically placed in conjunction with the rocky, natural terrain.[33] Duke Varen and the Second Legion left for the Cyrodilic heartland and after an initial defeat in Fort Ash, the Colovian Revolt made its way closer toward the Imperial City[31] until its resounding conclusion in 2E 577.[34] Back in the Gold Coast, the Longhouse's compound and retreat, the Black Drake Villa was plundered and most of Durcorach's treasure made its way into the black market.[35] In that same year, the pirate captain, Fortunata ap Dugal sailed into a barely protected and ungoverned Anvil with her fleet, the Red Sails and proclaimed herself its Provincial-Governor. Her first decree was to declare the Gold Coast's independence, from the Abecean Sea to Varen's Wall.[36]

Colovia and the Soulburst[edit]

The Sundering of Chorrol
Vlastarus

Varen Aquilarios acquired his title through the right of conquest, with help from his chief advisor, Mannimarco. But like his predecessors, the Colovian Emperor did not have the blood of dragons in his veins and could not light the Dragonfires, as per tradition within the Empire. Mannimarco offered a solution that involved the long-lost Amulet of Kings. The Emperor assembled his Five Companions and scoured the land for the artifact until they found it in Sancre Tor in 2E 579. They returned to the Imperial City and the Temple of the One, where Mannimarco would have conducted a modified ritual that lit the fires, but instead opened a volatile rift between Nirn and Coldharbour called the Soulburst.[37] Amid the chaos, Sai Sahan took the Amulet and hid it back in Sancre Tor,[38] but much to his detriment, both he and Lyris Titanborn were implicated in Varen's death.[37]

The aftermath of the Soulburst was immediate and devastating.[37] Earthquakes ravaged throughout central Cyrodiil and eventually split Chorrol in half, revealing a large fissure to the outer core of the planet. The people of Chorrol referred to the widespread destruction as the "Sundering".[39] The Soulburst paved the way for the Planemeld, Molag Bal's invasion over Tamriel and his takeover in Cyrodiil. The Order of the Black Worm built dark anchors all across the countryside, from the Applewatch Wood in the Colovian-Jerall region to Greenmead in the Great Forest. By the ninth century, central Cyrodiil was a shadow of its former self, plagued by highwaymen, necromancers, and now Daedra. The Colovians at this time were scattered and left to their own devices. While the Gold Coast continued uninterrupted as an autonomous state, settlements such as Chorrol and Vlastarus lived in a constant struggle with the elements.[40] However, the Colovian Estates between Varen's Wall and central Cyrodiil remained largely intact and continued their service to the Elder Council in earnest. At this point, Skingrad was ruled by Count Calantius, an ambitious leader and a canny-opportunist. When the Mane went rampant in Reaper's March to the south, he re-designated the Northern Woods around Arenthia as the South Weald and sent the Legion of the West Weald to invade.[32][41]

With the Ruby Throne vacant, nations from across the continent continued to vie for control of the Imperial City. By 2E 582, the Alliance War had completely enraptured central Cyrodiil and turned it into a warzone. While County Skingrad and the Gold Coast were left untouched, eastern Colovia was torn between the Daggerfall Covenant to the north and the Aldmeri Dominion to the south. The former had acquired land from the western Jerall Mountains between Gnoll Mountain and Sancre Tor to the northern half of the Great Forest between Chorrol and Fort Ash. The latter acquired the rest of the Great Forest from Hackdirt and Fanacasecul, to the southern provincial border between Vlastarus and the Upper Niben. Major settlements at the time were Chorrol and Vlastarus, whose allegiances were determined by control over in Fort Rayles and Castle Brindle respectively. At the edge of their respective territories, the alliances established bases on provincial gates and built temples that housed Elder Scrolls[40] they stole from the Cult of the Ancestor Moth.[42] In that same year, a political feud ensued between Governor Fortunata ap Dugal of Anvil, Primate Artorius Ponticus of the Akatosh Chantry, and Count Carolus Aquilarios of Kvatch over supremacy in the Gold Coast. With intervention from the Dark Brotherhood however, the Count of Kvatch was the last one left alive,[43] and sought to bring stability to the entire region in the wake of the conflict.[44]

Emperor Zero & the Third Empire[edit]

Tiber Septim (ca. 2E 864)
The Colovian Governor of the Western Reach

Many years after the Alliance War subsided, another claim for the throne arose, coming from the northern woodlands of Colovia. King Cuhlecain of Falkreath, a petty king of the Colovian Estates. At first, King Cuhlecain sought to unify the Estates, but needed to secure his northern border, as the Western Reach was engulfed in conflict, as the Nords and the Reachman were constantly fighting for centuries. Cuhlecain's Colovian troopers allied with Skyrim at the Battle of Old Hrol'dan, and with his champion, Hjalti Early-Beard leading the helm. The siege against Old Hrol'dan showed little progress, as the walls were impenetrable. Hjalti approached the city gates at dawn and use his Thu'um to break it down. The Reachmen were defeated, and the Nords gave the young general the title of "Hjalti Talos", or "Stormcrown". With Hjalti Early-Beard by his side, King Cuhlecain united the Colovian Estates in less than a year, and eventually conquer all of Cyrodiil. But at one point, King Cuhlecain passed away and Hjalti, assumed the crown, as Tiber Septim. The Third Empire went on to conquer the rest of Tamriel, beginning with the northwest in the provinces of the Iliac Bay, then to the provinces of Morrowind and Elsweyr, and the Second Aldmeri Dominion.[45] The Colovian Lords that led campaigns against the provinces were given the role of Provisional Governor, the two most well-known are Titus Alorius, who reigned over the Western Reach, and Amiel Richton, who conquered Stros M'Kai. By 2E 896, Tiber Septim ended the Interregnum and brought forth the Third Era.[46] Cuhlecain's legacy comes from the Cult of Emperor Zero, which venerates Emperor Zero Cuhlecain, who is now known for his wisdom of appointing Tiber Septim as his general, and his bravery in the retaking of the Imperial City.[1]

Under the reign of the Third Empire, Colovia was at peace, continuing the same service it provided the Empire for many years. But throughout the Third Era, there have been instances of conflict that approached Colovia. The most well-known was the invasion of the "Camoran Usurper", Haymon Camoran, who rallied his army from Valenwood and began his conquest over West Tamriel. The city of Kvatch was nigh obliterated by the Usurper's invasion. By 3E 267, Haymon's forces were defeated at the Iliac Bay and the Wrothgarian Mountains by the combined forces of the Iliac Bay, led by Baron Othrok of Dwynnen.[47][48] As the Camoran Usurper's Invasion raged across Western Tamriel, pirate activity increased, with the most notable pirate captain being Torradan ap Dugal.[49] But when the conflict ended, Commodore Fasil Umbranox turned his attention to Torradan's pirate reign. Captain Dugal was defeated by Commodore Umbranox and buried underneath the city. With his victory, Fasil Umbranox was appointed the Count of Anvil,[50] and a newly-built Anvil was constructed, becoming the modern-day County Seat.[51] Colovia's relative peace continued as the years go by. In the waning years of the Third Era, there was family strife in Kvatch's royalty, when the children of Count Ormellius Goldwine were killed, amidst their competition for the throne. By 3E 432, Count Ormellius Goldwine still mourned for his children.[23]

The ruined city of Kvatch (ca. 3E 433)
Weynon Priory

But things turned for the worst in the following year. In 3E 433, the Daedric Lord of Destruction, Mehrunes Dagon invaded Tamriel, in an event known as the Oblivion Crisis. Various Oblivion Gates were opened across the continent. One of the invasion's most well-known attacks was on the city Kvatch, which was utterly destroyed by the Daedric Hordes. Count Ormellius Goldwine was killed during the attack, as Castle Kvatch was stormed and razed by the Daedra. Captain of the City Guard, Savlian Matius was leading what little was left of the defense for Kvatch, on the outside. The people that survived the attack were either trapped in the ruined Cathedral of Akatosh or kept at the encampment outside of Kvatch. From the distant Weynon Priory, an Agent was sent to Kvatch by Jauffre, Grandmaster of the Blades, to find the lost heir of Uriel Septim VII. The Agent traversed the ruined Kvatch, and rescued the lost heir, Martin Septim,[52] all the while, destroying the Oblivion Gate, and securing the city with Savlian Matius.[53] From then on, the Agent was known as the Hero of Kvatch, and their method of destroying Oblivion Gates was used in Tamriel's defense against the crisis. Both Martin Septim, and the Hero of Kvatch worked together to end the crisis. The Hero was at one point sent to Miscarcand in the West Weald, to obtain a Great Welkynd Stone,[54] and to Sancre Tor, to acquire the Armor of Tiber Septim.[55] When Dagon was cast into Oblivion, from the Imperial City, the Septim Dynasty had officially died, and High Chancellor Ocato had announced the end of the Third Era, and the arrival of the Fourth Era.[56]

The Fourth Era began with the short rule of the Potentate, Ocato of Firsthold, but he was assassinated by the rising threat, the Thalmor. The Stormcrown Interregnum followed shortly after, albeit ending much faster, than the last Interregnum. The Nibenese Witch-Warrior, Thules the Gibbering ruled over the Third Empire for a short amount of time, only to be usurped by the Colovian Warlord, Titus Mede, thus beginning a new age in the Empire, the first dynasty to not be Dragonborn, and successfully reign over hundreds of years.[57][58] The Mede Dynasty, of Colovian Emperors, ruled over the Third Empire as far as 4E 201.[59]

The Colovian Estates[edit]

Arenthia (ca. 2E 582)
Falkreath (ca. 4E 201)

The Colovian Estates refer to the autonomous government of the nations of Colovia that are governed by merchant-estates.[60] Traditionally, these refer to the core Colovian nations (Anvil, Chorrol, Kvatch, and Skingrad), but the Colovian Estates have contained other nations throughout the eras, and have attempted to absorb regions beyond the provincial borders. Most notably is the city-state of Falkreath, which is found in southern Skyrim,[45] and has been administrated by the Far Falkreath Estate.[60] The Colovian's culture spill into their neighbors, such as the Redguards of Elinhir, who adopted their style of fashion and taste.[61] The city of Arenthia takes a lot of architectural inspiration from Colovia and is even found across the Strid River from Skingrad.[62]

The Colovian Estates have historically fought against their neighbors of Valenwood, which explains their influence across Reaper's March from Arenthia to Greenhill. Their first known conflict was around the dissolution of the Alessian Reforms. As Empress Herda improved relations with the Colovian West, attacks against Valenwood intensified, ultimately ending in 1E 2714 when the province was ceded into the Second Empire.[24] Another was during the Interregnum, in 2E 580, but their forces were thwarted as the First Aldmeri Dominion intervened and recruited the Wood Elves.[63] Two years later, another invasion occurred towards Reaper's March, as decreed by the Count of Skingrad and ratified by the Elder Council, by the Legion of the West Weald under both Javad Tharn and General Lavinia Axius.[64] But their invasion was thwarted by the newly-named Mane and her Moon Hallowed.[65]

Culture[edit]

The Mining Colony of Caldera
A Colovian Fur Helm

The Colovians (also called the Western Imperials[66] or just the Westerners)[1] are the modern-day Imperials of Colovia. They are known as the firm iron-hand of Cyrodiil and make a large majority of the province's working force. Unlike their brethren in the east, the Colovians retain much of their Nordic roots and still possess the frontier spirit of their ancestors. In a lot of ways, they are considered uncomplicated, self-sufficient, hearty, and loyal to their countrymen.[1] They can be distinguished from the Nibenese by their distinct accent.[67]

When it comes to clothing, the Colovians tend to dress with a simple or martial severity, unlike the Nibenese.[32] Colovian wear is visually distinct of their frontier-roots, as seen with the pointed helms and fur pelts worn by Sancre Tor highlanders,[68] or the armor worn by Colovians from County Anvil.[69] Colovian Prince's armor resembles traditional Imperial armor, but instead wore masked morion helmets.[70] Their sense of fashion, and even their taste has influenced other neighboring cultures, such as the Redguards of Elinhir.[61]

Sancre Tor Colovians

Examples of Colovian architecture can be seen in townships outside of Cyrodiil such as Caldera and Pelagiad, communities on the island-district of Vvardenfell. The Colovian style is often conflated with the Western Empire, such as in places like Daggerfall.[66][71][72] While the county city, Kvatch takes on the general Imperial style of architecture that was prevalent in the mid-Second Era and across the province,[73] the other county cities, Anvil,[74] Chorrol,[75] and Skingrad have their unique features but bare some semblance of the motif.[76] On the other side of the Strid River in Valenwood, the city of Arenthia and the town of Greenhill were built with traditional Colovian stone.[77][78]

As stated before, the Colovians make up most of the working force of Cyrodiil and even the military of the Empire. Most of the ranks in the Imperial Legion comprise of Colovians, from the common foot soldier to the higher command. Colovian nobles are usually high-ranked officers in both the Legion and the Imperial Navy. They are very dedicated to their work and would not even partake in the courtly privileges that entail the position, unlike the nobility of the Imperial City.[1] During the Tiber Wars, Colovian officers were traditionally appointed as provincial governors of human regions in the Third Empire, since it was believed that these regions need the most forthright of the Emperor's closest men.[79]

One of the largest industries in the region is logging, supplying Colovian Wood for construction and even to the Imperial Legion for their equipment. It is generally in high demand and production is overseen by lumber magnates. The type of wood they harvest is common variants such as ash and oak.[4] Every year, the Colovians and the nearby Wood Elves of Valenwood would meet on the Strid River for the annual Stridmeet, where they would trade resources between each other. For the longest time, the Bosmer relied on the meetup for resources from the outside world, but by the time they joined the Aldmeri Dominion, they turned toward sea trade from the Altmer.[28]

Notable Colovians[edit]

Lord-Admiral Richton
Amiel Richton
An Admiral of the New West Navy that later became the Provisional-Governor of Stros M'Kai.
Bendu Olo
The King of Anvil that assembled the All-Flags Navy and launched an assault on the Sload of Thras.
Berich Vlindrel
Scion of one of the great noble Colovian families and former member of the Knights of the Nine.
Fasil Umbranox
The first Count of Anvil, who defended his city from the Red Sabre and Captain Torradan ap'Dugal.
Rislav "the Righteous" Larich
The legendary King of Kvatch that defeated the Emperor Gorieus in Colovia and inspired many others to rebel against the Alessian Order.
Thibault of Kvatch
Legion General of the Hastrel Cohort, whose soldiers later founded the town of Greenhill and the crypt, Thibaut's Cairn.
Titus Alorius
The Provisional-Governor of the Western Reach after the province was conquered by Tiber Septim.
Titus Mede I
The Colovian Warlord that became the Emperor of Cyrodiil and continued the Third Empire after the Septim Dynasty.
Varen Aquilarios
The Duke of Colovia that defeated the Longhouse Emperors and claimed the title of Emperor during the Interregnum.
Zantonius
A legionnaire that later founded the city of Southpoint and was appointed its first governor.

Religion & Faith[edit]

Shrine of Akatosh in the Gold Coast
Shrine of Kynareth in the Great Forest

The Colovians have upheld their worship of the Eight Divines since the proto Cyro-Nords, unlike the Nibenese that venerated the One and followed the strict religion of the Alessian Order for most of the First Era.[1] The Colovians are resolutely and religiously Nordic in nature. This can be seen with their worship of Shezarr, the Cyrodilic aspect of Shor. Shezarr may have a thousand or so cults in the Imperial City, but he is especially worshipped in Colovia as Shor.[80] While they may be a devout people that value traditional Imperial virtues, in every generation, there are a few of them that turn toward dark and sinister pursuits. The majority call them the Woeful Colovians.[3]

Cyrodiil's temples to the Divines are ministered by their respective institutions and the Church, which is in turn handled by the Council of the Nine, formed by the primates in each parish.[81] Five of the Nine Divines are worshiped in Colovia, but only four of them have temples in the county-seats. The Akatosh Chantry have historically resided in the Grand Cathedral of Kvatch's main street, and had at one point become a major political faction in the mid-Second Era under the administration of Primate Artorius Ponticus.[82] Their knightly order, the Order of the Hour have historical ties to the Gold Coast and built at least two bases in the region, the underground tomb, Knightsgrave and the Enclave of the Hourglass south of Kvatch.[83] The House of Dibella occupy the temple in the Chapelgate District of Anvil and maintain a quiet and tranquil garden where acolytes come to meditate,[84] while the School of Julianos maintain the large church in the Chapel District of Skingrad.[85] The Temple of Stendarr have lived in Chorrol's Chapel Street for many years,[86] since at least the mid-First Era when the city's chapel was overseen by Archbishop Vinicius Imbrex.[87] In the late Third Era, Chorrol was ruled by Lord Charus Valga, a staunch follower of Stendarr and Defender of the Faith. His wife, Countess Arriana Valga was as much of a supporter to Akatosh and was able to set an example to her people on faith.[86]

Kynareth was the only divine not worshipped in a temple, so instead her followers gathered around a shrine in the Great Forest, west of the Red Ring Road and Fanacasecul.[88] To her disciples, nature's environs and the open sky is her great chapel, so they pay tribute in the wilderness.[89] The shrine was built in the vicinity of the Grove of Trials, an uninteresting cave to the unsuspecting traveler, but it housed the Boots of the Crusader, guarded by creatures from the forest.[90] For their valiant effort in the Battle of Sancre Tor, the healer, Osla was canonized as a saint by the Church and had a statue titled "The Touch of the Healer's Hand" built in her honor in Chorrol.[86][91]:361

Deep in the West Weald, near the provincial border toward Elsweyr and on the shores of Blessed Water, there was an old priory that housed a knightly order dedicated to the Divines. In the mid-Second Era, it was owned by the Knights of the Eight,[92] but by the early-mid Third Era, it was occupied by the Knights of the Nine. When Sir Amiel Lannus founded the order and re-populated the priory, it became an attraction to the great and the good. Among those attracted to the priory was Lord Berich Vlindrel, a scion to one of the oldest Colovian families. The priory was abandoned sometime later[93] but saw revitalization at the turn of the era in 3E 433.[94]

Folklore & Mythology[edit]

The Great Oak of Chorrol
The Mermaid of Anvil

The Colovian West is the host of its own array of myths and folklore, some of which are celebrated in the cities. There are some cases such as the story of Antus Pinder, who stood alone in a hopeless defense for Kvatch against a much more superior threat. Despite his grave defeat, he was honored by the city, who constructed a statue in his honor in the main square, outside the castle gate. The symbol of Chorrol is the Great Oak, an ancient tree that stands proudly in the center of the city's main square.[95] It is a focal piece of the city's iconography and even the Escutcheon of Chorrol, an ebony shield and a symbol of honor and heroism in Chorrol.[96]

However, one of the region's most mysterious stories revolves around the Mermaid of Anvil, an ancient statue that has managed to enthrall anyone to come across it. There is no information on its origins, so the local populous decided to make their own stories and rumors about it. Among the many rumors is that it depicts a forgotten deity or that it may be an unrecognized aspect of the Divines, or that it was created by some water-based society as a depiction of Azura.[97] There is another story that calls it the Selkie of West Skerry, which is much more fleshed out compared to others. It is said that the seal-maid's skin was stolen by her lover so that she may never leave him for the ocean. However, the lover's wife had secretly cut the skin in two, leaving one half for the Selkie. The creature donned the partial hide and discovered herself part-seal and part-maid. She left for the sea after that but is it said that she guides sailors through the dense fog for the Gold Coast.[91]:361 Archaeologists were able to determine that the statue has pre-dated even Anvil itself, but there are no records that mentions its existence.[97]

The stories of Sancre Tor's founding are varied and contradictory to each other. In some historical accounts, it was founded by Alessia, who received the divine inspiration to rebel against the Ayleids and bring about her slave rebellion, so she built her holy city on the very site.[98] One apocryphal account claims that Sancre Tor was an Ayleid holding that was taken by Alessia and the slaves.[99] Another myth claims that King Hrol and his shieldthane came to the area to find the spirit of St. Alessia. It was here, the King copulated with the spirit and supposedly impregnated a mound of mud. That mound became a small mountain dubbed the Golden Hill (known as Sancre Tor in Ayleidoon) by a community of shepherds and bulls. After nine months, the infant Reman was found at the peak.[14]

A legend that takes place in Colovia speaks of a Daedroth named Vernaccus and a legendary archer named Bourlor. Legend has it that Vernaccus terrorized the Colovian countryside, cursing everything in his wake. He was constantly pressed by his rival, the daedra seducer Horavatha. Eventually, the legendary archer and champion of Kynareth, Bourlor was called by the mayor of Evensacon to defeat the monster. Bourlor's skill with the bow was unmatched; he is said to have never missed his target. He encountered Vernaccus at a copse near the town and aimed his bow, the Daedra vanished in a pillar of flame before the arrow could pierce him: it stuck to the tree behind him. Molag Bal acknowledged his quick action, and he was soon fearfully venerated by the people all across Nirn. Bourlor was disgraced and died in isolation, left forgotten and unmourned. Many years later, one of Vernaccus' shrines in Colovia was assaulted by mercenaries, who threw stones at it. The Daedra fought them back, but one of the stones hit the shrine's door, which fell off its rusted hinges and onto his back. He was pierced by Bourlor's arrow, still lodged in the wood since their encounter. Thus was the end of Vernaccus' legacy and his reign of terror.[100]

Notable Locations[edit]

The Priory of the Nine
Fort Sutch in the 3rd Era
Anvil
A harbor-city found along the Abecean Sea. It is the gateway between the Abecean and the Imperial Province.
Chorrol
A city amidst the Great Forest, known for the Great Oak, which is part of their iconography for the longest time.
Gold Road
A major road that runs from Anvil to the Red Ring Road in the Heartlands. It also contains Kvatch and Skingrad.
Kvatch
The holy city of Akatosh, situated on a plateau that overlooks the Gold Coast and the Colovian Highlands.
Miscarcand
One of the largest Ayleid ruins in the province. It was once the seat of a powerful kingdom.
Priory of the Nine
A priory located deep in the wilderness, southeast of Skingrad. The Knights of the Nine lived in the priory since the early-mid Third Era.
Sancre Tor
The birthplace of Reman I, as well as the burial place for his dynasty. It was here the Amulet of Kings was stored for many years.
Skingrad
The "Gem of Old Colovia", seen as the model of Colovian independence and hardwork. It is also known as a prominent wine country.
Sutch
A former city of Colovia, on a prairie near the Brena River.
Varen's Wall
A large stone wall that divided the Gold Coast from the rest of Colovia. No longer present as of the late Third Era.

Regions[edit]

Bandit's Camp in the Imperial Reserve
Colovian Highlands
The rocky & forested region that separates Cyrodiil from Hammerfell.
Gold Coast
The western coast of Cyrodiil, known for its golden-colored savannah.
Great Forest
The expansive, and mythical forest region that spans eastern Colovian, around the Heartlands.
Imperial Reserve
An open flat land that is sparsely inhabited. Known for being prime hunting grounds.
Jerall Mountains (West)
The snowy mountain range that separates Cyrodiil from Skyrim.
West Weald
Open grasslands along the southern border towards Elsweyr & Valenwood.

Gallery[edit]

Notes[edit]

  • In an earlier version of the book, The Brothers of Darkness, Savirien-Chorak was called the "Colovian Emperor-Potentate" and was the last monarch of the Colovian Dynasty. He was later retconned into one of the Tsaesci, as well as the last Akaviri Potentate.[101]
  • Thoricles Romus was an Argonian member of the Elder Council that took on a Colovian name. He is most remembered for his attempted assassination of Empress Morihatha Septim, who did not send aid to a troubled Black Marsh. In the trial, he had protested his innocence to the very end.[102]

References[edit]

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  2. ^ Generic Dialogue in Oblivion
  3. ^ a b The Vile Manse loading screen text in ESO
  4. ^ a b Gold Coast Guide, Part OneAstinia Isauricus
  5. ^ Jarol Estate loading screen text in ESO: Dark Brotherhood
  6. ^ Ayleid Cities of Valenwood — the Esteemed Historian Homfrey at the University of Gwylim, 2E 455
  7. ^ Herminia Cinna's dialogue in Oblivion
  8. ^ Martin Septim's dialogue in Oblivion
  9. ^ Meet the Character - King NarilmorTjurhane Fyrre
  10. ^ a b c d Rislav The RighteousSinjin
  11. ^ The Wild ElvesKier-Jo Chorvak
  12. ^ The Lost Fort Faleria
  13. ^ Holidays of the Iliac BayTheth-i
  14. ^ a b c d Remanada
  15. ^ a b Pocket Guide to the Empire, 1st Edition: The Wild RegionsImperial Geographical Society, 2E 864
  16. ^ Anequina and Pellitine: An IntroductionSulema, Initiate Scholar of the Pa'alatiin
  17. ^ Rultari's JournalRultari
  18. ^ Vanus Galerion's dialogue in ESO
  19. ^ Journal of Tsona-Ei, Part OneTsona-Ei
  20. ^ The Royal House of King EamondSeneschal Derric Andras of Castle Evermore
  21. ^ The Tale of Syrabane
  22. ^ Pocket Guide to the Empire, 3rd Edition: The Ra Gada: HammerfellImperial Geographical Society, 3E 432
  23. ^ a b c Pocket Guide to the Empire, 3rd Edition: The Seat of Sundered Kings: CyrodiilImperial Geographical Society, 3E 432
  24. ^ a b c Pocket Guide to the Empire, 3rd Edition: The Wilds Remain: ValenwoodImperial Geographical Society, 3E 432
  25. ^ A Smuggler's Plan
  26. ^ The Founding of Southpointthe Provincial Office of Governor Zantonius
  27. ^ Southpoint location in Arena
  28. ^ a b Pocket Guide to the Empire, 1st Edition: Aldmeri DominionImperial Geographical Society, 2E 864
  29. ^ a b c Chronicles of the Five Companions 4Abnur Tharn
  30. ^ a b Imperial Decree Regarding the Elder Council
  31. ^ a b Eulogy for Emperor VarenLord Abnur Tharn, Chancellor of the Elder Council
  32. ^ a b c Special ZOS Lore Master Interview with Lawrence Schick
  33. ^ Varen's WallMidara Salviticus, Historian, University of Gwylim
  34. ^ Deciphered Imperial DocumentEmperor Leovic, deciphered by Beragon
  35. ^ Black Drake Villa loading screen text in ESO: Flames of Ambition
  36. ^ Pirate Queen of the Gold CoastMidara Salviticus, Historian, University of Gwylim
  37. ^ a b c Chronicles of the Five Companions 1Lyris Titanborn
  38. ^ Sai Sahan's dialogue in ESO
  39. ^ The Chorrol Crier
  40. ^ a b Cyrodiil location in ESO
  41. ^ Yours for the Taking!Catonius Libo, Aide-de-Camp to General Lavinia Axius
  42. ^ Sandana Axius' dialogue in ESO
  43. ^ Dark Brotherhood story questline in ESO: Dark Brotherhood
  44. ^ Count Carolus Aquilarios' dialogue in ESO: Dark Brotherhood
  45. ^ a b The Arcturian Heresy — The Underking, Ysmir Kingmaker
  46. ^ Brief History of the Empire v 1Stronach k'Thojj III
  47. ^ The Fall of the UsurperPalaux Illthre
  48. ^ The RefugeesGeros Albreigh
  49. ^ Cap'n Dugal's Journal, Part 2Captain Torradan ap Dugal
  50. ^ Cap'n Dugal's Journal, Part 3Captain Torradan ap Dugal
  51. ^ Thieves Den's description on "Obliviondownloads.com"
  52. ^ Breaking the Siege of Kvatch quest in Oblivion
  53. ^ The Battle for Castle Kvatch quest in Oblivion
  54. ^ Miscarcand quest in Oblivion
  55. ^ Blood of the Divines quest in Oblivion
  56. ^ Light the Dragonfires quest in Oblivion
  57. ^ The Infernal City — Gregory Keyes
  58. ^ Rising Threat, Vol. IVLathenil of Sunhold
  59. ^ Titus Mede II NPC in Skyrim
  60. ^ a b The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard — Character Bios
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  62. ^ Arenthia location in ESO
  63. ^ Ask Us Anything: Aldmeri Dominion (Part 1) — The Elder Scrolls Online
  64. ^ Yours for the Taking!Catonius Libo, Aide-de-Camp to General Lavinia Axius
  65. ^ Reaper's March questlines in ESO
  66. ^ a b Guide to Vvardenfell
  67. ^ Lord of Souls — Gregory Keyes
  68. ^ Westerners (Sancre Tor) — Pocket Guide to the Empire (1st Edition)
  69. ^ Anvil Colovian — Pocket Guide to the Empire (1st Edition)
  70. ^ Colovian Prince with Bodyguard from Rihad – Pocket Guide to the Empire (1st Edition)
  71. ^ Elone's dialogue in Morrowind
  72. ^ Pelagiad generic description in Morrowind
  73. ^ Kvatch architecture in ESO: Dark Brotherhood
  74. ^ Benirus Manor architecture in Oblivion
  75. ^ Francois Motierre's House architecture in Oblivion
  76. ^ Rosethorn Hall architecture in Oblivion
  77. ^ Cohort Briefing: ArenthiaCenturion Iunius Ocella
  78. ^ Thibaut's Cairn and its HistoryCharonius of Sutch
  79. ^ Pocket Guide to the Empire, 1st Edition: High RockImperial Geographical Society, 2E 864
  80. ^ Shezarr and the DivinesFaustillus Junius
  81. ^ Chana Mona's dialogue in Oblivion
  82. ^ The Wolf and the DragonMidara Salviticus, Historian, University of Gwylim
  83. ^ Knightsgrave: Legend or LegacyChanter Wobolan, Cathedral Historian
  84. ^ Guide to AnvilAlessia Ottus
  85. ^ Guide to SkingradAlessia Ottus
  86. ^ a b c Guide to ChorrolAlessia Ottus
  87. ^ The Four AbominationsVinicius Imbrex, Archbishop of Chorrol, 1E 10511087
  88. ^ Shrine of Kynareth unmarked location in Knights of the Nine
  89. ^ Avita Vesnia's dialogue in Knights of the Nine
  90. ^ Kynareth's Grotto unmarked location in Knights of the Nine
  91. ^ a b The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion Official Game Guide — Peter Olafson
  92. ^ Abbey of the Eight location in ESO
  93. ^ The Knights of the NineKaroline of Solitude
  94. ^ Knights of the Nine story questline in Oblivion
  95. ^ City-specific loading screens in Oblivion
  96. ^ Laythe Wavrick's dialogue in Oblivion
  97. ^ a b The Mysterious Mermaid of Anvil
  98. ^ The Legendary Sancre TorMatera Chapel
  99. ^ Closing the Octal Cage
  100. ^ Vernaccus and BourlorTavi Dromio
  101. ^ The Brothers of DarknessPellarne Assi
  102. ^ Brief History of the Empire v 4Stronach k'Thojj III