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This article is about the historical figure. For the book, see Mannimarco, King of Worms.
|Appears in||Daggerfall, Oblivion, ESO|
Mannimarco, an Altmer lich, is the leader of the Order of the Black Worm and an enemy of the Mages Guild. He is also known as the King of Worms (also styled King of the Worms), though it is unknown whether that title is specific to him or if he holds it as the leader of his cult of necromancers. He has been involved in several major events in Tamriel's history.
What is known of Mannimarco comes from books which tell a great deal not only about him, but about the time periods and Galerion.
He was studying among the Psijic Order around the year 2E 230. He was said to be highly intelligent, as was his fellow student Vanus Galerion, founder of the Mages Guild. Galerion had a "light and warm" heart, while Mannimarco unsurprisingly had a "dark and cold" heart. Mannimarco used necromancy and trapped souls even while studying.
Galerion eventually confronted Mannimarco about his use of necromancy. He ignored Galerion's warning, and was exiled from Artaeum by the Order as a punishment for his dark interests. He spent the next several decades gathering followers and spreading his vile practices.
Mannimarco's evil began spreading throughout Tamriel and he gathered a following of Necromancers, which would come to be called the Order of the Black Worm. He is described in a poem as "world's first of the undying liches", despite the fact that there had been many immortal liches before him. He lost his body and mind; he became a living, moving corpse. His blood became acid, and all manner of repulsive things happened to him, and he took on the title "King of Worms".
Around 2E 578, Mannimarco was one of the original Five Companions whose goal was to find the Amulet of Kings to give their leader Varen Aquilarios legitimacy as Emperor of Cyrodiil. After they found the amulet in Sancre Tor, Mannimarco tricked them into using it to cause an event known as the Soulburst. The Soulburst would allow Molag Bal to merge Nirn into his realm of Coldharbour, forever placing it under his control. Mannimarco, however, was secretly planning to use the Amulet to capture Molag Bal's essence and take his place as a god. However, one of the Five Companions, Sai Sahan was able to take the Amulet and returned it to Sancre Tor, where he hid it behind a ward of Stendarr. In 2E 582, Mannimarco uncovered the Amulet's location, and went there to retrieve it. He would there go on to be defeated by the Soulless One, with whom the Five Companions had been reformed. Mannimarco's soul was taken by Molag Bal to Coldharbour, where he was tortured for his treachery; but Mannimarco was able to escape and returned to Tamriel.
Confrontation with Vanus Galerion
Some time later Galerion left the Mages Guild, having previously called it "a morass" of political infighting and tortuous bureaucracy; but he continued to struggle against Mannimarco and his Worm Cult. Galerion led the Mages Guild in an attack on Mannimarco in a great battle on Artaeum. Mannimarco began to unleash powerful death spells. However, he felt his depraved powers fail, and the battle was won by the Mages Guild. Approximately a thousand men total died in the battle, Galerion included, and it appeared that Mannimarco had died as well.
The Warp in the West
Due to reports just before the event known as the Warp in the West regarding Mannimarco's growing power and machinations around Iliac Bay, it is highly suspected that he was involved in whatever phenomenon took place. In fact, that event has cast so much confusion into history that it is unknown whether there has been just one Mannimarco. There's some speculation that encounters with the King of Worms since the Warp were merely with a possessed vessel or another necromancer who took the name for effect. Some even suspect that Mannimarco ascended into godhood after the Warp. It was rumored, after the correspondence of a Worm Anchorite was circulated, that the Necromancer's Moon is the God of Worms- a heavenly body that eclipses Arkay and allows soul gems to ensnare those usually protected by the Divine. It boasted that this moon is the remnant of Mannimarco's apotheosis, and his divine form.
The Attack on the Mages Guild
Whatever occurred during The Warp in the West, a powerful necromancer calling himself Mannimarco surfaced years later during the Oblivion Crisis to stage a widespread assault on the Mages Guild in Cyrodiil. It is likely he chose this time to attack because he had a strong following (after Hannibal Traven's ban on necromancy in the Mages Guild took effect) and because he believed the Oblivion Crisis would weaken and distract the Mages Guild. However, the threat posed by Mannimarco was eliminated personally by the Mages Guild's newest Arch-Mage and the previous Arch-Mage, Hannibal Traven.
Despite Mannimarco's great age, only a few artifacts have been identified by scholars as belonging to him.
The Bloodworm Helm is an evil trollbone helmet created by Mannimarco, the King of Worms. Although beautiful to behold, many find the artifact repulsive due to its necromantic nature. The helm grants the wearer greater skill at Conjuration, as well as the ability to turn the undead, drain the essence of enemies and summon a skeletal minion from the Soul Cairn. Mannimarco left the helm behind when he ascended to godhood during the Warp in the West.
By 3E 427 the helm had come into the possession of a Nord necromancer named Crazy Batou, who had established a lair in an ancestral tomb in the Molag Amur region of Vvardenfell. Batou was killed by the Nerevarine, who then sold the helm to Torasa Aram. Torasa put the helm on display in the Mournhold Museum of Artifacts. It was later obtained by the Mages Guild, and transported to the Arcane University in Cyrodiil for safekeeping. In 3E 433, Mannimarco returned to the affairs of mortals and attempted to destroy the Mages Guild. The Council of Mages dissolved in the ensuing attacks on the guild, and Master-Wizard Irlav Jarol took the helm to the abandoned Fort Teleman in Blackwood with a group of researchers to study the artifact in an effort to better understand how Mannimarco could be stopped. The expedition went against the advice of Arch-Mage Hannibal Traven, who feared for the group's safety. Traven was proven correct when Irlav's experiments resulted in the summoning of many dangerous Daedra; Irlav himself was slain by a hostile Dremora. The Order of the Black Worm then launched an assault on Fort Teleman to recover the artifact for Mannimarco, but they were held at bay by the Daedra. A member of the Mages Guild was sent by Traven to recover the helm, and stumbled into the ongoing battle. The mage successfully infiltrated the ruins and took the helm from Irlav's corpse. It was then brought back to the University and returned to a secure place in the Arch-Mage's Tower.
The Necromancer's Amulet (also known as the Necromancer Amulet) is a legendary artifact created by Mannimarco. In appearance it is an exquisite amulet, often with a skull emblazoned upon it. It grants the wearer magical protection equivalent to plate armor, as well as the ability to regenerate from injury, resist mundane weapons, and absorb magicka and life force. The wearer also becomes wise beyond his years and far more capable in the School of Conjuration. This comes at a price, as the amulet can drain the wearer's strength, endurance, health and stamina. The artifact is popular among both thieves and mages. The amulet is unstable in this world, and is forever doomed to fade in and out of existence, reappearing at locations distant from that of its disappearance.
The amulet was uncovered by the Eternal Champion during the Imperial Simulacrum, in either High Rock or the Summerset Isles. In the events leading up to the Warp in the West, the amulet was recovered from an ancient lich by a knightly order in the Iliac Bay area. The amulet later fell into the hands of the Underking, who promised it as a reward for any who would return the Totem of Tiber Septim to him. Due to the Warp in the West, the fate of the amulet is unknown, although it may have been given to an unknown agent of the Blades. By 3E 427, the amulet had come to be owned by Arch-Mage Trebonius Artorius of the Vvardenfell branch of the Mages Guild. It was later claimed by the Nerevarine, although the circumstances as to how Artorius lost it are contradictory, ranging from the death of all the Telvanni councilors to the Nerevarine dueling for the title of Arch-Mage.
By 3E 433, the amulet had been transported to the Arcane University in the Imperial City for safekeeping. With the return of Mannimarco after his ascent to godhood, Caranya of the Council of Mages turned traitor and took the amulet and her supporters to the abandoned Fort Ontus, where she intended to return the amulet to its creator, making Mannimarco nigh unstoppable. The Champion of Cyrodiil uncovered Caranya's treachery and killed her, returning the amulet to Arch-Mage Hannibal Traven. By 4E 201, long after the dissolution of the Mages Guild, the amulet had been discovered, and lost again, by Calixto Corrium of Windhelm after he had been driven to madness at the death of his sister Lucilla. Attempting to bring her back to life, Calixto turned to necromancy and intended to use the amulet in his experiments. The amulet was found by the Last Dragonborn, who was investigating a string of murders in the city, attributed to a serial killer called "the Butcher". The Butcher was none other than Calixto, who was eventually discovered and brought to justice.
Staff of Worms
The third known treasured artifact of Mannimarco is the Staff of Worms, a powerful and dreadful staff which will "reanimate" a corpse for thirty seconds. This animated corpse remains mute and shows only minimal intelligence, but it unswervingly follows and defends the caster.
- Arkay the Enemy by KW — Instructions for the faithful to foil Arkay
- The Black Arts On Trial by Hannibal Traven, Archmagister of the Mages Guild — A summary of the salient points of the debate which led to the resolution of the Mages Guild on the subject of Necromancy
- Mannimarco, King of Worms — Horicles
- Where Were You ... Dragon Broke — Various
- Galerion the Mystic — Asgrim Kolsgreg
- Fragment: On Artaeum — Taurce il-Anselma
- The Improved Emperor's Guide to Tamriel: Northern Bangkorai and the Mountains — Flaccus Terentius, 2E 581
- Events of Oblivion
- Events of ESO
- Origin of the Mages Guild — The Archmage Salarth
- Events of Daggerfall