Lore:House Redoran

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Areas of Vvardenfell controlled by House Redoran in 3E 427 (red areas).
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House Redoran prizes the virtues of duty, gravity, and piety. Duty is to one's own honor, and to one's family and clan. Gravity is the essential seriousness of life. Life is hard, and events must be judged, endured, and reflected upon with due care and earnestness. Piety is respect for the gods, and the virtues they represent. A light, careless life is not worth living.Great Houses of Morrowind

House Redoran is one of the five remaining Great Houses of the Dunmer. It governs the Redoran District of northwestern Morrowind from the city of Blacklight, close to the border with Skyrim. In the District of Vvardenfell, the House's council seat was located in Balmora[1] as of 2E 582 and Ald'ruhn as of 3E 433[2]. In the latter, all councilors lived in the hollowed shell of a colossal prehistoric Emperor Crab, in the district known as Ald'ruhn-under-Skar.[3] Other Redoran-dominated towns on Vvardenfell included Khuul, Maar Gan and Ald Velothi.

In the mid-Second Era, House Redoran also controlled the settlements of Balmora, Suran, and Gnisis. The Redoran also maintained a garrison in Molag Mar and, in 2E 582, maintained a strong military presence in the nascent Vivec City.[1] In later years, prior to its destruction in 4E 5, House Redoran would instead hold a eponymous canton in Vivec City. House Redoran holdings on the mainland included Tal'Deic Fortress and the village of Serkamora. Despite House Dres rule, House Redoran Sentinels patrolled the streets of Old Ebonheart during the Daggerfall Covenant's invasion of Stonefalls.[4]

The main focus of House Redoran is maintaining the traditions of the settled Dunmer and, more specifically, the way of the warrior. As a result, House Redoran has long served as Morrowind's de-facto military. Due to the House's emphasis on tradition and piety, the Tribunal Temple was a natural ally, with many of Vivec's Buoyant Armigers hailing from the House.[5] House Redoran maintained strained relationships with the ashlander tribes of Vvardenfell, the Morag Tong, House Hlaalu[6], and House Telvanni.[2][7] They held respect for House Indoril, and were willing to fight alongside House Dres.[8] During the Third Empire's reign over Morrowind, the Redoran also held mutual respect between them and the Fighters Guild and Imperial Legion. They had less respect for the other Imperial institutions, such as the Mages Guild, the Thieves Guild, and the Imperial Cult. Like the other Great Houses, House Redoran loathed the cultists of the Sixth House and the vampires of Vvardenfell, and disapproved of the Camonna Tong's illegal activities.[2]

Saint Nerevar the Captain is the patron saint of House Redoran.[9]

First Era[edit]

From the original formation of House Redoran, our housekin have held the virtues of duty, gravity, and piety most dear. A frivolous, soft life is not worth living. We focus on maintaining the traditions of the civilized Dunmer and holding fast to the way of the warrior. Our military strength, for example, outclasses the other Great Houses by a wide margin. Our prowess puts us at least one step ahead of them all and in most cases many more.Understanding House Redoran

House Redoran was founded in ancient times on the 3rd of Last Seed, a date still celebrated by members of the Great House.[10] The House has existed since the time of the Chimer and the First Council.[11] By the 107th year of the Golden Peace, they were already considered the most militarily powerful of the Great Houses.[12] According to Athyn Sarethi, warriors of House Redoran fought and died at the Battle of Red Mountain under the leadership of Hortator Indoril Nerevar.[13] In the centuries that followed, the Redoran watched the northwestern border of Morrowind along the Velothi Mountains from their ancestral seat in Blacklight, defending against the Nordic raiders from Skyrim who'd pillaged the land since time immemorial. The constant warring with the Nords led to the warrior-House's hardened and militaristic leanings. The House adopted the color red as a designation. Some say the House's crest is the appropriated Dwemer symbol for Lorkhan, while others insist it is a shalk - a fire-breathing and hardy scarab native to Morrowind's ashlands and lava flows.[14][15]

Dranoth Hleran, who's bloodline would one day be of House Redoran, is credited as the one who struck the killing blow on Skar, the ancient Emperor Crab around which Ald'ruhn was built.[16]

In 1E 2920, at the close of the First Era and the Four-Score War, the dubiously-real Dunmeri woman Turala was said to have been exiled from Morrowind by her Redoran family after she was impregnated by Brindisi Dorom, the Duke of Mournhold. Allegedly, she would go on to summon Mehrunes Dagon in a bid to kill Dorom and sack Mournhold.[17]

Second Era[edit]

A Redoran's duty is first to the Tribunal Temple, second to the Great House Redoran, and third to one's family and clan. A Redoran noble must know the virtue of gravity. It is not the Redoran way to laugh at serious matters, for it shows disrespect. It is not the Redoran way to spread rumors, for they fester and breed dissention [sic].The True Noble's Code

At some point prior to 2E 582, House Redoran staked claim to the western half of Vvardenfell, including the Bitter Coast, Ascadian Isles,[18] West Gash, and a portion of the inner Ashlands.[19][20] The Redoran employed the House Hlaalu Construction Syndic to create the modern incarnations of Balmora and Suran for what was deemed a suspiciously low cost. Against the Redoran's wishes, the Hlaalu built the settlements in their own style, rather than the more organic Redoran style. Some Redoran worried that the Hlaalu intended to conquer the settlements through underhanded mercantile means.[21] Concerns that, in time, would prove valid. By the Third Era, both settlements flew the golden banner of House Hlaalu.[2] Sometime prior to 2E 582, the House also established the mining village of Gnisis in the northwest of Vvardenfell, and secured a presence in the settlements of Molag Mar and Vivec City. Other Redoran holdings erected around this time included a garrison northeast of Balmora, and Arenim Manor[22] in the northern Bitter Coast.[1]

After the outbreak of the Knahaten Flu, House Redoran sent a military expedition to the Ruins of Mazzatun in the Black Marsh region of Shadowfen, intending to wipe out the Xit-Xaht tribe, whom they suspected to be responsible for the disease.[23]

During the mid-Second Era, House Redoran's leader was High Councilor Meriath.[1] After the defeat of Ada'Soom Dir-Kamal's Akaviri forces at Vivec's Antlers in 2E 572, House Redoran was among the four Great Houses that joined the newly-formed Ebonheart Pact.[24] After the outbreak of the War of the Three Banners in 2E 580, House Redoran's warriors would be among those that fought for control of Cyrodiil and the White-Gold Tower. In 2E 582, the Redoran-ruled village of Serkamora in Deshaan was infiltrated by the Maulborn Cult, who posed as healers aiding with the rampant Llodos Plague. In truth, the Maulborn had created the plague in a bid to undermine the Tribunal's rule and turn their citizens against them. It is unknown whether Dethisam Berendas, Serkamora's local Redoran representative, survived the events.[25] In Tal'Deic Fortress, General Gavryn Redoran was killed by the Maulborn Cult and replaced with a Daedric simulacrum. With the aid of the Soulless One, the Redoran Captain Valec Doronil exposed the General's death and impersonation, and defeated the Maulborn in the crypts beneath the fortress.[26]

Simultaneously, House Redoran faced issues with its holdings in the western half of Vvardenfell. Balmora's Captain Brivan Malrom enlisted the aid of Khajiiti mercenaries to supplement the depleted Redoran military, despite protests from the House Council. Tensions ran high with the nomadic ashlanders of Vvardenfell when Redoran land claims clashed with ashlander lands.[27][28] Councilor Dolvara would be executed by the Morag Tong, followed by Councilor Eris Releth's daughter, Veya, attempting to assassinate the rest of the Redoran Council that same year. The wayward Councilor's daughter would be stopped by the Morag Tong, but not before claiming her father's life.[7] In Suran, the local head of security, Marshal Hlaren, was exposed for corruption and slave peddling and executed.[29] During this time, House Redoran also maintained a "Narcotics Oath Bureau" purportedly charged with the regulation of illegal substances, such as Skooma.[30]

Flags bearing the symbol of House Redoran commemorating the many victories the House claims credit for achieving were in circulation during the sixth century of the Second Era.[31]

In the late Second Era, Tiber Septim's legions turned their eyes towards Morrowind. Following House Indoril's lead, House Redoran swore to resist the western invaders to the death. However, House Redoran soon found itself manning the western borders of Morrowind alone, with House Indoril and House Dres preferring to retreat inwards to wage a guerrilla war, House Telvanni remaining neutral, and House Hlaalu advocating accommodation. When Vivec signed the Armistice, House Redoran breathed a sigh of relief, honor now permitting them a way to not have to face the Third Empire's vast legions alone.[8]

Third Era[edit]

A Redoran is a warrior whose duty is first to the Tribunal, second to House Redoran, and third to family and clan.Mottos of the Dunmeri Great Houses

During the Third Era, House Redoran's traditionalist stances would see the House decline in strength, further harmed by the Imperial-mandated disbandment of the majority of their military. The Redoran suffered territorial and economic losses at the hands of House Hlaalu and Telvanni during the Third Empire's reign, particularly in Vvardenfell.[32] After losing Balmora to Hlaalu rule, House Redoran claimed the former ashlander gathering site of Ald'ruhn as the site of their new district seat, and built a grand city around the shell of Skar at the foot of Red Mountain. At some point before 3E 427, House Redoran erected the settlement of Maar Gan in the ashlands, and the villages of Khuul and Ald Velothi in the northwest coast of the West Gash.[2]

As of the late Third Era, Bolvyn Venim, ruled as Archmaster of the Great House. Bolvyn was somewhat unscrupulous for a Redoran. Few among the rest of the hierarchy actually liked him, but the Redoran respect for strong leadership (which few Redoran leaders had displayed in recent years at the time) and prowess in arms ensures that he nevertheless retained his position. He was influential in securing Redoran's share of the frontier lands when Vvardenfell was opened for settlement in 3E 414, and moved the council to Ald'ruhn as a result.[33]

Conflicts often arose with the other Great Houses at this time. The most obvious conflict during the late Third Era was centered on the town of Caldera that was founded by the Imperial Caldera Mining Company with the support of House Hlaalu. There was also bickering with the House Telvanni concerning the founding of certain new settlements in the Ashlands and occupation of old Velothi Towers, such as Shishi.[2]

During the fulfillment of the Nerevarine prophecies in 3E 427, Archmaster Bolvyn Venim was killed in an honorable duel with the Nerevarine. It is unknown whether the Nerevarine succeeded Venim as Archmaster, or whether the vanquished Archmaster was succeeded by another of House Redoran. House Redoran subsequently offered the Nerevarine the title of Redoran Hortator. House Redoran as a whole, with the majority of its holdings closer to Red Mountain than the other Houses, also suffered from attacks at the hands of blighted creatures and corprus monsters. These attacks ended along with the Blight when the Nerevarine slew Dagoth Ur and destroyed the Heart of Lorkhan inside of Red Mountain.[2]

After the coronation of King Hlaalu Helseth, rumors spread throughout Tamriel that the new King had abolished slavery. House Redoran and Indoril fought a brief civil war against House Hlaalu and Dres on the matter. At the same time, it was said that Nords, aided by Orc mercenaries, had besieged the Redoran of Morrowind. It is unknown to what extent these rumors were true or accurate, or what the outcome of these skirmishes were.[34]

During the Oblivion Crisis of 3E 433, the Empire pulled a vast majority of the Legions out of Morrowind to deal with the gates opening in their homeland of Cyrodiil. The Dunmer had no standing army at the time due to the Imperial demilitarization, and the armies of daedra destroyed the Redoran city of Ald'ruhn.[34] The destruction of their ancestral city, coupled with their historic status as "the hereditary defenders of the Morrowind", led to House Redoran taking charge, and they were slowly able to raise an army and spared Morrowind from Dagon's full wrath.[35]

Fourth Era[edit]

Duty, gravity, and piety: these are our watchwords. We are the wartime defenders of the House Dunmer of Morrowind.Crafting Motif 51: Redoran Style

After the Oblivion Crisis, the House started to rebuild the damage to Ald'ruhn and elsewhere. However, in 4E 5, the Red Year brought further destruction to Morrowind. The eruption of Red Mountain wiped all of the settlements on Vvardenfell off the map. The Redoran councilor living in Mournhold at the time coordinated the relief effort, issuing a directive to send soldiers, supplies and able-bodied mer to the settlements which were hit the hardest within a month of the initial disaster.[36] Shortly after the eruption of Red Mountain, Morrowind came under siege from the Argonians of Black Marsh. While the Argonians were able to decimate the south and east of mainland Morrowind, the army of House Redoran prevented them from progressing further into the north and west and, according to some, pushed the invaders out of the decimated southern and eastern regions.[35]

The political affairs surrounding the Oblivion Crisis and the Red Year culminated in a power vacuum, as House Hlaalu was unceremoniously dismissed from the Grand Council. Animosity between Hlaalu and Redoran increased, as House Redoran seized the opportunity and became the leading power in what remained of Morrowind,[37] taking the position that Hlaalu had held for centuries due to their close ties with the Empire, and House Indoril for millennia before them due to their ties to the Tribunal. The Hlaalu believe that Redoran were directly involved in the reorganization of the council, and have held a grudge against them ever since.[38] Subsequently, Redoran relocated the capital of Morrowind to Blacklight, as Mournhold had been sacked by the Argonians.[35] With Blacklight as the capital of Morrowind and House Redoran's army hailed as the saviors of the Dunmer, the Redoran's rise was complete.

In 4E 16, the High King of Skyrim gave the island of Solstheim to Morrowind as a refuge, and it passed into the control of House Redoran (though the Telvanni established their own settlement, Tel Mithryn, on the southeast coast).[39] Though a House Sathil settled in Solstheim around 4E 40, their relationship with the Redoran rulers of the island is unknown.[40] Solstheim's chief settlement, Raven Rock, was ruled by Councilor Brara Morvayn, and later her son Lleril after her passing in 4E 65.[41]

In 4E 95, an assassination attempt was carried out against Councilor Lleril Morvayn by House Hlaalu, but was stopped by House Redoran guards. A band of Argonian raiders landed on Solstheim in 4E 150 but were swiftly defeated by the Redoran guard stationed in Raven Rock as well. House Redoran benefited from the mining of Ebony there until 4E 181, when the mine at Raven Rock was closed.[38] House Redoran's neglect of Solstheim increased, as without the mine, the island not only held little economic or strategic importance compared with the other seventy-three outlying settlements of Morrowind, but was a significant source of casualties for the Redoran Guard (they lost twenty-six guards in a two-year span).[42]

In 4E 201, the Last Dragonborn traveled to Solstheim and assisted Councilor Morvayn in uncovering and foiling a second attempt on his life by House Hlaalu remnants and the Morag Tong. The Last Dragonborn similarly saved the citizens of Raven Rock from the nocturnal control of Miraak. That same year, new ebony deposits were discovered and the mine reopened.[43] The renewed flow of ebony from Raven Rock prompted House Redoran to take a renewed interest in Raven Rock and Solstheim.[37]

House Redoran remains the dominant power in Morrowind, ruling as at the head of the Grand Council from their capital of Blacklight, now the capital of all of Morrowind. It is said that Blacklight rivals the splendor of Mournhold in its prime.[44]

Architecture[edit]

Redoran settlements are designed in the Dunmer village style, built of local materials, with organic curves and undercoated exteriors inspired by the landscape and by the shells of giant native insects the Redoran claim to have killed in the distant past. Redoran villages are typically centered on Temple compounds and their courtyards, with huts and tradehouses gathered around a central plaza, as in the West Gash village of Gnisis, which was, for a time, rented to the Imperial Legions in the Third Era prior to being destroyed during the Red Year.[45]

Armor[edit]

In the Second Era, House Redoran warriors donned armor crafted from Kagouti (or premium guar) leather, covered in layers of medium-sized overlapping chitin (or chitin-looking) plates. The armor of the time sported helmets ornamented with tall horns that resembled the mandibles of shalk.[46] By the Third and Fourth Eras, this armor had been replaced by bonemold. In Third Era Vvardenfell, the Gah-Julan style was the preferred of House Redoran.[2]

Gallery[edit]

See Also[edit]

Books[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Events of The Elder Scrolls Online
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Events of Morrowind
  3. ^ Guide to Ald'ruhn
  4. ^ Appearance of Redoran Sentinels patrolling the streets of Ebonheart in ESO
  5. ^ Dialogue in Morrowind
  6. ^ House Redoran Advisory
  7. ^ a b Events of Family Reunion and A Purposeful Writ in ESO: Morrowind
  8. ^ a b On MorrowindErramanwe of Sunhold
  9. ^ Mottos of the Dunmeri Great HousesVilyn Girith
  10. ^ Commemorative Nail Clipper contraband item in ESO
  11. ^ Poison Song II
  12. ^ Understanding House RedoranRemoran Redoran, Grand Historian for the House
  13. ^ The True Noble's Code
  14. ^ Crafting Motif 51: Redoran ChestsVindamea Redoran, House Procurement Sister, Vivec City
  15. ^ Crafting Motif 51: Redoran ShieldsVindamea Redoran, House Procurement Sister, Vivec City
  16. ^ Ballad of Dranoth Hleran
  17. ^ 2920: The Last Year of the First EraCarlovac Townway
  18. ^ Suran being under Redoran control in ESO: Morrowind
  19. ^ Events of Ancestral Ties in ESO: Morrowind
  20. ^ House Redoran Advisory
  21. ^ Hlaalu Construction SyndicManaran Renim, First Clerk of House Affairs, Vvardenfell
  22. ^ Arenim Manor's purpose and owners during ESO: Morrowind
  23. ^ Taken from an Interview with Retired Dark Elf Archaeologist, Drendisa Vedran — Drendisa Vedran
  24. ^ Pact Pamphlet: Congratulations!
  25. ^ Events of Bad Medicine and Quest For the Cure in ESO
  26. ^ Events of Rules and Regulations and What Lies Beneath in ESO
  27. ^ House Redoran OrdersCaptain Brivan
  28. ^ Ashlander Tribes and CustomsUlran Releth of House Redoran
  29. ^ The Scarlet Judge in ESO: Morrowind
  30. ^ Journal of a Fallen OfficerFalura Uveleth, Former Officer
  31. ^ House Redoran Victory Flag contraband item in ESO
  32. ^ A Short History of MorrowindJeanette Sitte
  33. ^ Athyn Sarethi's dialogue in Morrowind
  34. ^ a b Rumors in Oblivion
  35. ^ a b c Adril Arano's dialogue in Dragonborn
  36. ^ The Red YearMelis Ravel
  37. ^ a b Lleril Morvayn's dialogue in Dragonborn
  38. ^ a b History of Raven Rock, Vol. III
  39. ^ Loading Screen captions from Dragonborn
  40. ^ Lord of Souls — Gregory Keyes
  41. ^ History of Raven Rock, Vol. II
  42. ^ House Redoran's Reply
  43. ^ Events of Skyrim
  44. ^ Cindiri Arano's dialogue from Dragonborn
  45. ^ Great Houses of Morrowind
  46. ^ Crafting Motif 51, RedoranVindamea Redoran, House Procurement Sister, Vivec City