Lore:Sea of Pearls
|Sea of Pearls|
|Type||Body of Water|
The Sea of Pearls is a large body of water found west of the continent of Tamriel and its western waters, the Abecean Sea. It consists of the western-half of the Summerset Isles, the outer reaches of the High Rock sea-complex, but it mostly contains other continents beyond Tamriel's grasp, such as the sunken-islands of Yokuda, the dreaded archipelago of Thras, and the underwater kingdom of Ul'vor Kus. It is part of the greater Eltheric Ocean and it is neighbored by the Abecean Sea to the east, the Azurian Sea in the north, and both the Cape of the Blue Divide and the Southern Sea to the southeast. The Sea of Pearls acquired its name from the myriad shells that wash up on the shores of its islands; they tend to have whorls like nautilus shells, which are light-weight and durable. Sailors call the waters around Thras the Cursed Sea.
The Summerset Isles and its ancient rivals
In the mid-Merethic Era, the Aldmer settled on what is now known as the Summerset Isles, spreading onto the island's western coast, building great cities such as Alinor, Corgrad, and Lillandril, even expanding into islands off the coast, on the Sea of Pearls (i.e., College of Sapiarchs, Eyevea and Wasten Coridale). The Summerset Elves eventually became the Altmer, and built large, illustrious kingdoms, while staying to themselves throughout history, as the races of Tamriel evolved. Over time, the High Elves conflicted with their neighbors, the Maormer of Pyandonea, and the Sload of Thras. The latter race are the inhabitants of the Sea of Pearls, residing in an archipelago of coral. The Summerset Isles had been in constant conflict with these races, over the control of the eternal isles, so much so that the province's north and west coast is heavily-defended, for the purpose of protecting the island from the Sload and Maormer. Cey-Tarn and Sea Keep were among the many forts made on the Sea of Pearls. There have been many battles between the High Elves and the Sload, such as the Sack of Skywatch (1E 1301) and the War of the Uvichil (1E 2911 — 1E 2917). All the while, the Altmer and the Maormer held several skirmishes in the waters between them. In 2E 486, High King Hidellith conflicted with a small fleet off the coast of Alinor, which brought them to their homeland, the island-kingdom of Pyandonea. The last known appearance of the Maormer was in 3E 110, during the War of the Isle. It was King Orgnum's fleet against the Kingdoms of Summerset, and the support of Emperor Antiochus' Imperial Navy. It took the arcane might of the Psijic Order to defeat the grand fleet.
The Lost Islands of Yokuda & the Ra Gada
In the distant west was the island-continent of Yokuda, the ancient homeland of the Redguards. It was completely surrounded by the Sea of Pearls, and it is the furthest known extent of the body of water. In the late years of the continent, it was ruled Emperor Hira, whose attempt to take control over the Yokudan Empire from the common-folk, by persecuting the Sword-Singers, warriors that followed a martial philosophy regarding the mastery of the sword known as the "Way of the Sword." Thus began the War of the Singers, a critical moment in the Yokudan's history, a battle between Emperor Hira's forces and Frandar Hunding's sword-singers. The war came to a climax at the foothills of Hattu Mountain, where Hunding's warriors were able to obliterate Hira's rag-tag armies, but at the cost of more than three hundred thousand warriors. Hunding and the sword-singers left Yokuda from the sea-city of Arch, for new and unknown lands across the Sea of Pearls, which was the eventual province of Hammerfell.
The Yokudans remained on their island-continent for several years after Frandar Hunding's departure to Hammerfell. In 1E 792, the islands of Yokuda had sunken into the Sea of Pearls, reportedly lost forever. To this day, there have been many theories regarding the cause of its extinction, whether it was natural causes, or caused by its people. One such source was that it was caused by a series of earthquakes that targeted the very foundation of the islands. Another idea was that the renegade group of Ansei ( the highest-ranked sword-singers) known as the Hiradirge, masters of stone magic, were the cause of the island's destruction, using a forbidden sword technique. It was their way of ruining what they could not rule, which is further corroborated by an account from the Celestial incarnation of the Warrior. Regardless, the refugees of Yokuda sailed eastward across the Sea of Pearls, in the same direction as Frandar Hunding, to the island of Herne. From there, the Ra Gada paved their way through Hammerfell, and re-settled as the Redguards of Hammerfell.
In 1E 2200, the Sload of Thras had spread the terrifying disease known in history as the Thrassian Plague. The plague caused wide-spread pandemonium across the provinces of western Tamriel, claiming half of the lives of Tamriel, bringing the end of ancient civilizations like the Sixteen Kingdoms of Elsweyr, and powerful kingdoms like Corgrad, and the nations of the Iliac Bay. It was reported that the Thrassian Plague decimated the Tamrielic population, bringing it down by half. In retaliation, the Colovian King of Anvil, Bendu Olo gathered armies across west Tamriel, including Hammerfell, the Summerset Isles, High Rock, and the continent's outer reaches like Black Marsh, for a full-scale invasion against the archipelago of Thras.
The All Flags Navy has been described as the largest allied naval force in Tamriel's history. Among them were many historical figures, the most well-known was Syrabane, the Altmeri God-Ancestor of Magic, who used the power of his ring to save many people from the plague. From the island of Stirk, the All Flags Navy had set forth across the Sea of Pearls, to besiege and slaughter the Sload to extinction. With unknown magic spewing from the Coral Tower, the islands were sunken into the ocean for many years until it eventually resurfaced. While people such as Bendu Olo were able to return from the Sea of Pearls, half of the fleet was sunken into the sea by the otherworldly magic that came from the Coral Tower, into the depths of Coldharbour. The maelstrom swallowed the battlefield into Coldharbour, where it became the Lost Fleet.
The Sea of Pearls laden the Summerset Isle from the north and west coast. The cities of Alinor and Lillandril overlook the waters atop of the mountain foothills. The islands of College of Sapiarchs, Eyevea, and Wasten Coridale are found. The Sea of Pearls empties into the sound of Summerset, where the docks of Alinor are located, the hills surrounding Ebon Stadmont and Sea Keep descend to the beaches, and a river coming down from Cloudrest empties into the water. The coast between the Alinor docks and its parent city is known as the Oleander Coast. In the area surrounding Lillandril are the lowlands known as the Augury Basin, which give way to the oceans. This is exemplified in the sunken city now known as the Corgrad Wastes. The rest of the city had been swallowed by a sinkhole, resting in large gaping caves where the city's people reportedly continue to live. Because of the Sload's constant interjections into Summerset, they have left several landmarks across the main island's coast, such as Abyssal Geysers, which are powered by their water magic and one of their Abyssal Pearls, archaic items that attract the hidden monsters of the Sea of Pearls. It is because of the Sload's invasions, the island's coast is heavily-fortified, as seen through Cey-Tarn Keep and Sea Keep. Throughout the coast is riddled with silk white coral, which is often festering with Coral Crab. Other creatures found on Summerset's coastlines are the Reef Viper, the Salamander, and the Mud Hoppers.
The islands of Yokuda were once the home of the Redguards, but it eventually sank into the Sea of Pearls, supposedly lost forever. While it is widely believed that the continent is no longer inhabitable, there are reports that trade existed between Tamriel and Yokuda as far as the late-Third Era in 3E 433. The political geography of the continent is largely unknown, but what is certain is that Yokuda consisted of four large-islands. The biggest one is Akos Kasaz, with the distinct duality, both gentle and brutal. It has been described as moody and many-sided and ruler and rebel. The capital of the empire and Akos Kasaz was the city of Totambu. The second-largest is the island of Yath, found south of Akos Kasaz. It was rugged and arid, but magnificent nonetheless. The island was once the home of what is now the Ash'abah, the exiled-nomads of the Alik'r Desert. It hosted a settlement known as Makan. Next was the island of Kanesh, described as volcanic and tall, with highlands engulfed by the ravaging heat. The settlement of Lumut was active on the island. The next island was Samara, consisting of lush, lowlands that bore the sweetest fruit and many natural harborages. The rest are much smaller islands that surround the much bigger ones. These include, Bahia, Irranhu, Kardesh, Klithi, and Moni. There are several other landmarks, whose locations in these islands are unknown. The provinces of High Desert and Seawind are found in Yokuda, as well as Hattu Mountain and the great port-city of Arch, found in these provinces respectively.
Thras, Ul'vor Kus & Other Islands
The island territories between Tamriel and Yokuda have little information to them, save for the best-known island of them all, the dreaded archipelago of Thras, located southwest of the Chain, is found deep in the Sea of Pearls. The islands are constantly changing. The earliest maps of the archipelago depict sixteen islands that surround each other like a coral atoll, but throughout the eras and centuries, maps of Thras were varied and inconsistent. By the waning years of the Third Era, in 3E 432, the largest island of Thras was known as Agonio, and it is one of the most consistent parts of the map, albeit changing sizes. A black lagoon is found in the center of Thras, where intricate coral reefs and large shipwrecks are found.
The atoll of Thras is the home of the land Sload, whereas the Sea Sload lived in the underwater kingdom of Ul'vor Kus, found somewhere in the Sea of Pearls. There are more mysterious and elusive than their land brethren, believed to have disappeared centuries before the mid-Interregnum by the Sapiarchs of Summerset Isle. Instead of forming kingdoms like in Thras, the Sea Sload consist of cabals, groups of them that seek to achieve a specific goal. The Abyssal Cabal was active in 2E 582 and sought to take the Isle of Summerset into the ocean through sinkholes and the abyssal geysers that dot the coastlines. The Sea Sload, K'Tora was able to infiltrate the island of Artaeum and manipulate the Ritemaster of the Psijic Order, Iachesis., but their efforts were in vain. South of Yokuda is a series of islands with no information regarding them. The largest island of this archipelago was Nalonga, which hosted the settlement of Zanzar, and southeast of that is Ravan. The two smaller islands are called Asil Yelir and Siuol Yelir.
- Map of West Tamriel — The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard
- Nautilus Shell Guards codex entry in ESO: Greymoor
- Dialogue with Captain One-Eye
- Auridon Explored, Chapter XII — Fenlil the Wayfarer
- Cey-Tarn Keep loading screen in ESO: Summerset
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, 3rd Edition: The Blessed Isle: Alinor and the Summersets — Imperial Geographical Society, 3E 432
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, 3rd Edition: Other Lands — Imperial Geographical Society, 3E 432
- Redguards, Their History and Their Heroes — Destri Melarg
- The Warrior's dialogue in ESO
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, 1st Edition: Hammerfell — Imperial Geographical Society, 2E 864
- Anequina and Pellitine: An Introduction — Sulema, Initiate Scholar of the Pa'alatiin
- Rultari's Journal — Rultari
- A History of Daggerfall — Odiva Gallwood
- Journal of Tsona-Ei, Part One — Tsona-Ei
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, 1st Edition: Cyrodiil — Imperial Geographical Society, 2E 864
- Varieties of Faith: The High Elves — Brother Mikhael Karkuxor of the Imperial College
- Journal of Tsona-Ei, Part Two — Tsona-Ei
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, 1st Edition: The Wild Regions — Imperial Geographical Society, 2E 864
- Journal of Tsona-Ei, Part Three — Tsona-Ei
- Journal of Tsona-Ei, Part Four — Tsona-Ei
- Map of Summerset — The Elder Scrolls Online: Summerset
- Wasting Away quest in ESO: Summerset
- Indirim's Journal, Assembled — Indirim
- Ulfgar Fog-Eye's dialogue in Oblivion
- The Salas En Expedition — Lady Clarisse Laurent
- The Lost Islands of Old Yokuda — Hazadiyya Sea-Queen
- The Myth of the Sea Sloads — Raavarion, Sapiarch of Aquatic Malevolence
- Buried Memories quest in ESO: Summerset