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High King Erling
Race Nord Gender Male
Resided in Solitude
Solitude ca. 2E 582

Erling was a High King of Skyrim who ruled from the city of Solitude.[1] He is most remembered for his contributions to the city's modern architectural style and the construction of some of its iconic landmarks.[2][3]

It is unknown when exactly Erling ruled as the High King of Skyrim. He resided in the Emperor's Tower of Castle Dour,[3] which was the original seat of the Jarls of Haafingar prior to High King Harald's consolidation of Skyrim in the early First Era and the construction of the Blue Palace, which replaced Castle Dour as Solitude's royal residence.[3][4] One account of Solitude's expansion further supports the likelihood that Erling's reign preceded the advent of the Blue Palace.[2]

Erling oversaw multiple infrastructure projects to enhance and strengthen Solitude, including the Temple of the Divines in Castle Dour, Solitude's sturdy outer walls, and the interior arch bridge connecting the Emperor's Tower to the city's windmill.[2][3] Construction began shortly after his coronation.[3] To design the city walls, Erling enlisted an architect named Thryrahilde who advocated a specific style that would make the walls visually distinct and more protective. Thryrahilde's proposal met with some opposition, but ultimately prevailed.[2] The High King is also credited with insisting that the wall stones be individually blessed by priests of the Divines.[5]

In addition to the walls, the city's entrance was bolstered with three watchtowers, two of which were paired with gates: the outer Sky Tower, the middle Squall Gate, and the inner Storm Gate.[3] In some parts of Solitude, like Castle Dour's extension, the interior arch, and the windmill, one can see Erling's preference for a rounded style of architecture. The interior arch, which separates the Wells District from the Avenues, was supposedly built to allow Captain Jytte, a famous privateer at the time, to enter Castle Dour discreetly. While historians theorize she met with Erling purely for business, others speculated that they had a personal relationship.[3]


See Also[edit]