This article is about the god. For the emperor, see Magnus Septim. For the astronomical object, see Sun.
The Eye of Magnus is always upon us, in the spells and enchantments that devout Mages conjure.
—Excerpt from the Lesson of the Divine Body
Magnus, also known as the God of Magic (or simply Magic itself), the Sun God, the Great Architect, He Who Abstained, and the Sorceror-King, was a prominent et'Ada, one of the Original Spirits. During the Dawn Era, Lorkhan persuaded Magnus and several other et'Ada to help create the mortal plane, Mundus. Magnus was said to have been the architect of Mundus, as he created the schematics and diagrams needed to construct it.
As Mundus began to form, it became evident that many of the et'Ada would be required to sacrifice much of their power in order to form the mortal plane. As their aspects began to die off, many of the et'Ada vanished completely. Magnus decided to terminate the project. He fled to Aetherius in the last of Mundus's birth-pains, and his departure tore a hole which became Nirn's sun, itself known as Magnus.
The et'Ada who chose to stay became the Ehlnofey. Many other et'Ada, who became known as the Magna Ge, followed Magnus, tearing smaller holes in the sky, which became the stars.[UOL 1] Though it is sometimes believed that the stars are actually fragments of Magnus himself. After Magnus's departure, the et'Ada convened at the Adamantine Tower at an event known as Convention and decided to punish Lorkhan for his trickery.[UOL 2]
Legacy and Worship
In the eras that followed, many Altmer and Bretons venerated Magnus as a god and he became a part of their respective pantheons. The Ayleids, masters of the arcane arts, worshiped him as the god of Sight, Light, and Insight and were known to dedicate temples in his name. The Priory of the Golden Staff were peaceful followers of Magnus headquartered near Stormhaven, teaching of Magnus's grand design for the Mundus, and his disappointment at the flaws introduced into his creation. They believed that Magnus watches from the sun, waiting to repair what the others set amiss and were in possession of forbidden texts that revealed a darker design; some of the Magna Ge once sought a tool to unmake what had been made wrong, in order that it could be remade in accordance with the Architect's plan, which became Mehrunes Dagon.
Breton followers of Magnus sometimes use wicker effigies as stand-ins for themselves when performing certain rituals.
The Khajiit worship Magrus, where he is commonly known as the Cat's Eye or the Third Eye of Azurah. An ancient belief that predate the religious reforms of the Riddle'thar Epiphany tells a story that when Magrus fled from Boethra and Lorkhaj, he could only see out of one eye and fell into the Moonshadow. There Azurah judged him as too full of fear to rule a sphere, and she tore out his other eye. Magrus left to the heavens blinded, but Azurah made of his eye a stone to reflect the Varliance Gate, which is known as the Aether Prism. However, some Khajiiti sorcerers hold that Magrus left the eye willingly as an offering to Azurah and her children, and these magi still utter prayers to his name.
Cyrodiilic legends say Magnus can inhabit the bodies of powerful mages and lend them his power. He is also associated with Zurin Arctus, the Underking and is sometimes represented by an astrolabe, a telescope, or, more commonly, a staff. He was rumored to have had dealings with the Blades, going as far to entrust them with a map to his staff. The New Life Festival, which takes place across Tamriel, was originally in celebration of Magnus. During the Second Empire, the worship of Magnus was strictly prohibited for Imperials in Imperial society.
Morrowind legends, specifically from Vivec’s famous sermons claim that Nerevar was banished from the library of the sun by the power of Magnus.
Reachmen celebrate their version of New Life Festival, a holiday originally dedicated to Magnus and pray for Hrokkibeg, the aspect of Hircine to protect the sun.[UOL 3]
Imperials do not consider Magnus as the Divine, for though he gave much, he did not give all. His Aedric nature is not questioned, but he is not worshipped. His gift of magic is considered a dubious contribution that does the world at least as much ill as it does good.
Bosmer Spinners also claim that the sun and stars are holes pierced in the wall of night by Magnus—and other spirits—seeking to escape Nirn.
He supposedly created and used the Staff of Magnus, one of the elder artifacts of Tamriel. Legend tells that it's the only artifact capable of containing his immense power. In time, the staff will abandon the mage who wields it before they become too powerful and upsets the mystical balance it is sworn to protect. Another artifact attributed to him is the Eye of Magnus, an ancient relic of immense power that was found buried under the Nordic city of Saarthal in the Merethic Era and later rediscovered in 4E 201.
In Cyrodiil, a magical stone, supposedly associated with a long-forgotten cult, can be found southeast of Bravil. Known as the Magnus Stone by the populace, it is said to grant a powerful blessing that bolsters the magical abilities of certain individuals.
Zurin Arctus, the Underking, heavily associated with Magnus.
- The Redguards of Abibon-Gora celebrate and worship the sun on the 1st of Midyear, also known as Drigh R'Zimb, which is considered the hottest time of the year in the region. To them, the sun is known as Daibethe.
Note: The following references are considered to be unofficial sources. They are included to round off this article and may not be authoritative or conclusive.