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- "...walk like them until they must walk like you"
- ―Nu-Hatta of the Sphinxmoth Inquiry Tree[OOG 1]
Mantling is a process whereby an individual can achieve apotheosis; that is, become a god. It is frequently considered one of the Six Walking Ways, the Fourth, and is sometimes called the Steps of the Dead.[OOG 1] However, our main source for the process could potentially imply that it is not just the fourth Walking Way, but that there are different ways to mantle, and that Talos used the fourth way. Or that the Fourth Walking Way is a process of mantling in itself; the sources are very unclear. This article will assume, for the most part, that the Fourth Walking Way and the Steps of the Dead are the same thing.
The process of mantling appears to be the taking up of a role, which then grants the person the power and, to an extent, the identity, associated with that role. It can be used to reshape the nature of gods,[OOG 2] and in the examples that we have of the process all involve the manipulation of a deity in some form.
The examples we have (see Possible Examples below) seem to indicate that the process is only possible when the entity being mantled is in some way absent from the Aurbis. This would fit the etymology of the term, derived from the Old Testament, where Elisha takes up to Elijah's mantle (cloak) and his role as prophet after he ascends to Heaven.
The process has no precise attested examples with Elder Scrolls games, but has been discussed at length by both developers and fans. As such, most of the information we have is either based on inference or out-of-game texts, rather than confirmed examples of the process itself.
Possible examples Edit
The Arcturian Heresy gives an account that implies that Hjalti Early-Beard, Zurin Arctus and Wulfharth mantle Lorkhan in their construction of the Numidium and use of the Mantella. Of particular note, the Underking loses his heart and tears a hole in Zurin's chest, mimicking Trinimac's or Auri-El's tearing out of Lorkhan's heart. In addition to this, Tiber Septim led a war against the mer, just as Lorkhan had led a war against Auri-El.
During the Greymarch at the end of the Third Era, the Champion of Cyrodiil undertook a variety of tasks to defeat Jyggalag. At the end of this process, Jyggalag addresses the Champion as Sheogorath, suggesting that they are the same being at that point.
The Tribunal Edit
One of Vivec's writings may imply that the Tribunal have mantled the Anticipations, in claiming that "Six are the guardians of Veloth, three before and they are born again", Vivec may be claiming that the Tribunal took on the roles of Azura, Boethiah and Mephala. However, this may not be the case, as there is stronger evidence that the Tribunal used other methods to attain godhood.
- ↑ 36 Lessons of Vivec, Sermon 32
- ↑ 2 Kings 2:11-14, KJV
- ↑ The Arcturian Heresy
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 The Monomyth
- ↑ Tower of Adamant
- ↑ Varieties of Faith in the Empire
- ↑ The Elder Scrolls IV: The Shivering Isles
- ↑ Jyggalag Quotes
- ↑ 36 Lessons of Vivec, Sermon 6