So… what do we know about Skyrim so far?
Precious little is certain, however the lore and history of Tamriel is rich, thanks to the incredible detail built up over the series so far. And luckily for us, around the time of Oblivion (which we know to be some 200 years before the events of Skyrim), Bethesda were thoughtful enough to publish “A Pocket Guide to The Empire and it’s Environs“, commissioned by none other than Emperor Uriel Septim VII himself.
What does this venerable tome tell us of Skyrim?
Well, it was the first settling place in Tamriel by humans, centuries ago, as they arrived from Atmora. The early Nedic people (predecessors of our modern-day Nords, the residents of Skyrim today) arrived in northern Saarthal over the course of many centuries, with one invasion after another forming the land in blood and violence. This identifies with the tough and fearless Nords we know today.
But not only did the early Nords fight one another, they also came to blows with the Aldmer, the early elves populating the area. As these conflicts went on, the early Nedic people divided and settled into the Nords, Imperials and Bretons, whereas the Aldmer diversified into the many Elven races of modern Tamriel - the Ayelid, Altmer, Dwemer, Chimer, Dunmer and Bosmer. Certainly, early Skyrim left echoes we see everywhere we turn in Tamriel today.
Look out in Skyrim lore for mention of Ysgramor, the first of the Nordic kings and he from which all are descended…. and one of the greatest and legendary of all Tamrielic figures. Might he get a mention in the new Skyrim game?
Ysgramors clans spread out over the land, conquering all of Skyrim. By the 113th year of what is now known as the First Era, all of what is Skyrim today was under the reign of King Harald…. but the Nords didn’t stop there. They began campaigns against the Dwemer, Altmer and Bretons, and applied their forces to the slave rebellions in southern Cyrodiil, which was to prove the undoing of the Ayleid reign, of which we see only echoes remaining in the likes of Morrowind and Oblivion.
The Nords, and the early Imperials formed an alliance of sorts at this time, standing firm against their enemies in the Elven cultures. Cultures began to mix (perhaps part of the reason why we see so many Nords settled in Cyrodiil in the Elder Scrolls games so far?). But the might of the Nords was not to last forever. Greed and rivalry in the Nordic clans began to cause internal strike, and Skyrim lost its foothold in lands such as Morrowind and High Rock. Skyrim itself began to fracture as a kingdom. It was around this time that the Septim Empire (the forefathers of Martin Septim himself, who players of Oblivion will be familiar with) began to exert their own influence over the warlike Nords, and recruit them for their own purposes and the solidifcation of the Septim Empire…
Visit back soon for part 2, where we uncover what happened next in Skyrims history.
Have you unearthed any of Skyrims lore or history? Perhaps in some media you have access to, or through discoveries you have made in the Elder Scrolls I to IV? We want to know! Head on over to our Forums and share your scholarly knowledge or speculations! Facts, theories, wild guesses – we want to hear it all!