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Battle of Red Mountain

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For the book, see The Battle of Red Mountain.

The Battle of Red Mountain was a battle between the Nords and an alliance of Dwemer and Chimer at Red Mountain during the First Era conflict known as the War of Succession, at around 1E 416. During the War of Succession, the Nords became weakened by their internecine conflict.[1] Seeing an opportunity for freedom, the Chimer under Indoril Nerevar and the Dwemer under Dumac forged an alliance between them to combat the Nords.[2] The Dwemer and Chimer attacked the Nords at Red Mountain, driving them from the land with "great slaughter."[1] Jurgen Windcaller and his fellow Tongues, according to Emblem VII of High Hrothgar, "went away humbled."[3], although it led him to believe that the gods were punishing the Nords for their arrogant and blasphemous misuse of the Thu'um.[3] The battle was a considerable setback for the Nords and was one of the factors leading to the end of the First Empire of the Nords.[1]

There was another "Battle of Red Mountain" around 1E 700, and was the climactic battle involving the Heart of Lorkhan. One account stated the war was solely between the Chimer and the Dwemer. This account states that the uneasy truce between the Chimer and Dwemer evaporated during the War of the First Council. Several accounts attribute the war to simple cultural differences between the Dwemer and the Chimer that were too great to allow for peace.[4] The event that began the march to war was the discovery by House Dagoth that the Dwemer had discovered the Heart of Lorkhan beneath Red Mountain.[5]

This led to heated negotiations between Nerevar and Dumac Dwarfking. Upon being told by Azura that the Dwemer were building a new god under the mountain, Nerevar and the Tribunal issued an ultimatum to the Dwemer to stop work on their new god, or face destruction. Dumac, ignorant of the work Kagrenac had done on the Heart, refused. And so the Chimer and Dwemer went to war.[6] Another account states that Wulfharth was also involved in this war and led an army of orcs, Nords, and members of House Dagoth in this second Battle of Red Mountain against the Chimer and the Dwemer.

According to the tales, the Nords had made plans to conquer their old lost territories for years but never followed through because they lacked a strong leader to lead them. Allegedly, that changed when Wulfharth was resurrected as Shor's avatar and united the sons of Skyrim to invade Morrowind and reclaim the Heart of Lorkhan. The initial battles for the Nords were devastating after making landfall. Although they thought the Dwemer and Chimer armies would be weaker with reports of them warring with each other, they were surprised to be beset by both armies. Some tales claimed Voryn Dagoth deceived Wulfharth and the Nords into believing he was an ally, and betrayed the sons of Skyrim by leading them into a combined Dwemer-Chimer ambush. Other tales claimed that some of Wulfharth's Nords deserted him when he allied himself with their traditional enemies and fell in the climactic battle with the combined Dwemer-Chimer army. Ultimately, Wulfharth died at the Battle of Red Mountain in 1E 700, either by being weakened by Dumac and slained by Indoril Nerevar, or blasted away into ashes by Vivec.[7]

All accounts note that the war culminated in the Battle of Red Mountain. All available sources agree, however, that the Dwemer disappeared during the battle. This is either because Kagrenac turned his Tools on the heart,[8] or because Azura told Nerevar and the Tribunal how to use the tools to banish the Dwemer.[6] House Dagoth was also destroyed either in this battle or in its immediate aftermath.[9] The Tribunal wrested Kagrenac's Tools and the Heart of Lorkhan from Voryn Dagoth and used them to give themselves divine powers. Unbeknownst to them, Voryn Dagoth did not die from their conflict but had secretly connected himself to the Heart long ago, turning into Dagoth Ur and becoming a divine being himself.[8]

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