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hermaeus mora

Secrets Overheard in Apocrypha

Author: 
Morian Zenas

The Seekers pretend that they cannot talk, but they can. For I have heard them. They can both understand speech, and utter it, though they do so with a hissing lisp. I shall tell you how I know.

As is so often the case since I came to Apocrypha, I was cowering behind a stack of books, hiding from the baleful attentions of a towering gill-man whose notice I had inadvertently caught. I listened to hear if I was still gibbering, but I couldn't hear it, which usually means I'm not. Then I heard something else.

Just beyond my concealing tower of tomes was one of those endless halls lined with numberless urns, halls that I have assiduously avoided ever since I learned that each urn houses, in a broth of noisome fluid, a living concept-organ excised from its corpus. I do not like those urns.

From the entrance to this hall of urns came the all-too-familiar squelching sound of a Seeker's footfalls. But then it stopped, and in its place I heard, for the first time, the sticky sound of a speaking Seeker.

—I know a thing, the Seeker lisped, as a frisson of horror danced down my spine.

—Is it a thing worth knowing? came the hollow, sourceless voice of the organ in the hithermost urn.

—You shall judge, Floater. I have learned why we have seen no mortal intruders, save for the demented wizard, in many turns of the Great Pages.

—You know nothing, said the organ.

—I know Old Antecedent has entered into an agreement with the mortals, a compact, as they say. Is that nothing? asked the Seeker.

—Next to nothing. The Golden Eye is always entering into pacts with mortals. Thus my woeful condition.

—Avoid self-pity, or I shall mock you. You do not like it when I mock you. Listen attentively.

—I listen.

—In truth, the Scryer enters into many pacts with mortals—but never before has he made a pact with every mortal on Nirn.

—Bah. Unlikely.

—I state it! It is a thing that is known.

—How?

—I heard a discussion between Scrivener Uu-Thorax and the Eleventh Preceptor. They came into the Crepuscule, where I was quietly….

—Seeking?

—Yes. In fact. Now, listen: the Scrivener told the Preceptor that the Inevitable Knower had agreed to a pact, to cease all direct interposition in Mundial affairs.

—Impossible. I scoff. Mock me as you will.

—So thought I, and likewise the Preceptor expressed skepticism, but then the Scrivener spoke a Word of Asseveration. Books scattered everywhere, ichor fountained from my ear-holes, and I knew what he said was a Known Thing.

—But why? To meddle with mortals and wrest from them their knowledge is the Ur-Daedra's favorite pastime.

—He seems to have been paid a great price, something he dearly desired, but I could not clearly hear what, due to the injury to my ear-holes.

—It is knowledge, of course. Some great secret. It is ever so.

—So I deem it as well. And it seems this compact binds in both directions, which is why the mortals come here no more, added the Seeker.

—Except for the mad mage. How came he here, and upon what ill errand? asked the urn-organ.

—I know not. But if we catch him, we will pull out his … what is that sound?

I heard it too, and so I ran. For I knew that sound. It was gibbering.

Journal of Habbert Unsinett

Author: 
Habbet Unsinett

From the Journals of Habbert Unsinett, Senior Archivist and Researcher

Dresan Keep's archives continue to grow and prosper. I love working with the knowledge of the ages. I know that no mere mortal endeavor could equal something as vast and comprehensive as the Apocrypha of Hermaeus Mora, but I am content here. And, of course, I have not sold my soul in servitude to a Daedric Prince to dwell amid a wealth of information and history. (Though sometimes I do dream of wandering the endless stacks of Apocrypha.)

***
I have told the younger acolytes repeatedly that they must individually dust each book and then carefully replace it. I caught Gatrin dusting a shelf of books, just swiping a cloth across the spines as casual as can be. He was not wearing gloves, either, and I have reinforced, time and time again, the need to keep the natural oils from our skin away from these precious tomes.

***
I would like to say that the wars do not trouble me, but that would be a lie. I spoke with Lady Dresan the Elder about the fate of this treasure trove of knowledge preserved within the keep. The books on arcane magic, in particular, should not fall into the wrong hands. We have a plan of preservation that falls mainly upon my shoulders to implement. Most of the staff has fled as the fighting intensifies. Some have gone to join the wars, to return home to families. Others have gone to I know not where. A few of my colleagues remain, however. Dresan Keep is our home and its library of knowledge our life's work. I shall enlist their aid in preparing a safe space for the most important treasures in the library. Sacrifices will be required.

***
Time has taken on a strange pace, but it is peaceful here now. I have made a vow to protect the keep's treasures. We spent countless years indexing all of the volumes within the collection. At the risk of flattering myself, my series of charts that cross-reference people, places, and relevant tomes in the collection is both useful and a work of art. Someone, someday, will need the information we have collected, and they will know how to put it to good use.

I worry about mildew, though.

Fragmentae Abyssum Hermaeus Morus

Author: 
Anonymous

…So Ysgramor collected the laments of the Giant-Wives and brought them to Froa and Grosta, who twisted them into the Woeful Bowstring, so that Ysgramor could re-string his mighty bow Long-Launcher. And thereafter did Long-Launcher sigh when it was borne, and moan when it was shot. And Ysgramor decided to take it hunting.

And he hunted and slew much game in the Atmoran Frostwood, until he paused at a ford to drink his fill. Then across the stream bounded the White Stag of Forelgrim, and Ysgramor shot at it and missed, which in no wise pleased him, and he swore to pursue the White Stag until it fell to him. But the stag was canny and quiet, and passed as a mist over the snow, so that Ysgramor did again and again sight it and lose it. For even the sighing of the Woeful Bowstring made more sound than did the White Stag.

When again he lost the trail and stopped, sore vexed, an Hare did appear and spake, saying, "The stag hieth down into yon vale." "How knoweth you this?" demanded Ysgramor of the Hare, which replied, "I know for I have long ears. Yea, had you ears as long as mine, you too could hear your prey wherever it went."
"Would, then," said Ysgramor, "that my ears were as long as thine." At that the Hare's nose did twitch, and Ysgramor felt his ears begin to grow and point. But a Fox did leap from the coppice and fall upon the Hare, slaying it, and Ysgramor, in wonder, felt his ears dwindle to their wonted size.

And the Fox spake, saying, "Know thou, mortal, that I am Shor, and this was nary Hare, but indeed, Herma Mora, who did nearly trick thee into becoming of Elvenkind. Rely you hereafter, mortal, upon the forthright methods of Man, and eschew the tricks of the Elves, lest ye become one. Now, go—for the White Stag awaiteth thee in the vale."

Hyrma MORA pado ADA oia NAGAIA aba AGEA cava APOCRA dena GORIA gandra ARCAN

"Hermaeus Mora, elder than Ada, Abyssal Cephaliarch, hearken to the plea of this unworthy, for I come to barter for knowledge denied. That which I seek is named on this parchment, which I consume in your honor, O Demon of Knowledge. For my desire to know is beyond reckoning, and in recompense, whatever price is named shall be met. AE HERMA MORA."

AE HERMA MORA ALTADOON PADHOME LKHAN AE AI

(My next dream was) of Apocrypha, where I walked the halls of shadow among the (nameless books), among concepts and arguments I inhaled like smoke. In my left hand was a scroll of vellum, in my right hand a plume, (and I wrote) histories as I passed, yet the scroll was unfilled, for as I wrote (words) beneath the (words) above vanished.

Then I paused at a plinth of lapis, for it contained (an object) heretofore unremarked, an urn with a curious finial. So I (set aside) scroll and plume, grasped the finial and lifted the lid.

(Within the urn) was a viscous and noisome (fluid), upon which floated, gray and glistening, a mortal's (organ of thought). And I knew, though I know not how, that the (fluid) was not brine, and the brain was not preserved, but alive, alert, and brooding with a dark intellect. I dropped the lid and (looked up from) the urn, and saw, (beyond the plinth), a long and endless corridor, lined left and right with plinths uncountable, and (upon each plinth was) its urn.

(Which was why, when) I awoke, my tongue was bitten through.

The Book of Daedra

Author: 
Anonymous

Azura, whose sphere is dusk and dawn, the magic in-between realms of twilight, known as Moonshadow, Mother of the Rose, and Queen of the Night Sky.

Boethiah, whose sphere is deceit and conspiracy, and the secret plots of murder, assassination, treason, and unlawful overthrow of authority.

Clavicus Vile, whose sphere is the granting of power and wishes through ritual invocations and pact.

Hermaeus Mora, whose sphere is scrying of the tides of Fate, of the past and future as read in the stars and heavens, and in whose dominion are the treasures of knowledge and memory.

Hircine, whose sphere is the Hunt, the Sport of Daedra, the Great Game, the Chase, known as the Huntsman and the Father of Manbeasts.

Malacath, whose sphere is the patronage of the spurned and ostracized, the keeper of the Sworn Oath, and the Bloody Curse.

Mehrunes Dagon, whose sphere is Destruction, Change, Revolution, Energy, and Ambition.

Mephala, whose sphere is obscured to mortals; known by the names Webspinner, Spinner, and Spider; whose only consistent theme seems to be interference in the affairs of mortals for her amusement.

Meridia, whose sphere is obscured to mortals; who is associated with the energies of living things.

Molag Bal, whose sphere is the domination and enslavement of mortals; whose desire is to harvest the souls of mortals and to bring mortal souls within his sway by spreading seeds of strife and discord in the mortal realms.

Namira, whose sphere is the ancient Darkness; known as the Spirit Daedra, ruler of sundry dark and shadowy spirits; associated with spiders, insects, slugs, and other repulsive creatures which inspire mortals with an instinctive revulsion.

Nocturnal, whose sphere is the night and darkness; who is known as the Night Mistress.

Peryite, whose sphere is the ordering of the lowest orders of Oblivion, known as the Taskmaster.

Sanguine, whose sphere is hedonistic revelry and debauchery, and passionate indulgences of darker natures.

Sheogorath, whose sphere is Madness, and whose motives are unknowable.

Vaernima, whose sphere is the realm of dreams and nightmares, and from whose realm issues forth evil omens.

[Especially marked for special interest under the heading "Malacath" you find a reference to SCOURGE, blessed by Malacath, and dedicated to the use of mortals. In short, the reference suggests that any Daedra attempting to invoke the weapon's powers will be expelled into the voidstreams of Oblivion.]

"Of the legendary artifacts of the Daedra, many are well known, like Azura's Star, and Sheogorath's Wabbajack. Others are less well known, like Scourge, Mackkan's Hammer, Bane of Daedra...."

"...yet though Malacath blessed Scourge to be potent against his Daedra kin, he thought not that it should fall into Daedric hands, then to serve as a tool for private war among caitiff and forsaken. Thus did Malacath curse the device such that, should any dark kin seek to invoke its powers, that a void should open and swallow that Daedra, and purge him into Oblivion's voidstreams, from thence to pathfind back to the Real and Unreal Worlds in the full order of time."  

The Doors of Oblivion

Author: 
Seif-ij Hidja

"When thou enterest into Oblivion, Oblivion entereth into thee." -- Nai Tyrol-Llar

 

The greatest mage who ever lived was my master Morian Zenas. You have heard of him as the author of the book 'On Oblivion,' the standard text for all on matters Daedric. Despite many entreaties over the years, he refused to update his classic book with his new discoveries and theories because he found that the more one delves into these realms, the less certain one is. He did not want conjecture, he wanted facts.

For decades before and after the publication of 'On Oblivion,' Zenas compiled a vast personal library on the subject of Oblivion, the home of the Daedra. He divided his time between this research and personal magickal growth, on the assumption that should he succeed in finding a way into the dangerous world beyond and behind ours, he would need much power to wander its dark paths.

Twelve years before Zenas began the journey he had prepared his life to make, he hired me as his assistant. I possessed the three attributes he required for the position: I was young and eager to help without question; I could read any book once and memorize its contents; and, despite my youth, I was already a Master of Conjuration.

Zenas too was a Master of Conjuration - indeed, a Master at all the known and unknown Schools - but he did not want to rely on his ability alone in the most perilous of his research. In an underground vault, he summoned Daedra to interview them on their native land, and for that he needed another Conjurer to make certain they came, were bound, and were sent away again without incident.

I will never forget that vault, not for its look which was plain and unadorned, but for what you couldn't see. There were scents that lingered long after the summoned creatures had left, flowers and sulfur, sex and decay, power and madness. They haunt me still to this very day.

Conjuration, for the layman unacquainted with its workings, connects the caster's mind with that of the summoned. It is a tenuous link, meant only to lure, hold, and dismiss, but in the hands of a Master, it can be much stronger. The Psijics and Dwemer can (in the Dwemer's case, perhaps I should say, could) connect with the minds of others, and converse miles apart - a skill that is sometimes called telepathy.

Over the course of my employment, Zenas and I developed such a link between one another. It was accidental, a result of two powerful Conjurers working closely together, but we decided that it would be invaluable should he succeed in traveling to Oblivion. Since the denizens of that land could be touched even by the skills of an amateur Conjurer, it was possible we could continue to communicate while he was there, so I could record his discoveries.

The 'Doors to Oblivion,' to use Morian Zenas's phrase, are not easily found, and we exhausted many possibilities before we found one where we held the key.

The Psijics of Artaeum have a place they call The Dreaming Cave, where it is said one can enter into the Daedric realms and return. Iachesis, Sotha Sil, Nematigh, and many others have been recorded as using this means, but despite many entreaties to the Order, we were denied its use. Celarus, the leader of the Order, has told us it has been sealed off for the safety of all.

We had hopes of using the ruins of the Battlespire to access Oblivion. The Weir Gate still stands, though the old proving grounds of the Imperial Battlemages itself was shattered some years ago in Jagar Tharn's time. Sadly, after an exhaustive search through the detritus, we had to conclude that when it was destroyed, all access to the realms beyond, the Soul Cairn, the Shade Perilous, and the Havoc Wellhead, had been broken. It was probably for the good, but it frustrated our goal.

The reader may have heard of other Doors, and he may be assured we attempted to find them all.

Some are pure legend, or at any rate, not traceable based on the information left behind. There are references in lore to Marukh's Abyss, the Corryngton Mirror, the Mantellan Crux, the Crossroads, the Mouth, a riddle of an alchemical formula called Jacinth and Rising Sun, and many other places and objects that are said to be Doors, but we could not find.

Some exist, but cannot be entered safely. The whirlpool in the Abecean called the Maelstrom of Bal can make ships disappear, and may be a portal into Oblivion, but the trauma of riding its waters would surely slay any who tried. Likewise, we did not consider it worth the risk to leap from the Pillar of Thras, a thousand foot tall spiral of coral, though we witnessed the sacrifices the sloads made there. Some victims were killed by the fall, but some, indeed, seemed to vanish before being dashed on the rocks. Since the sload did not seem certain why some were taken and some died, we did not favor the odds of the plunge.

The simplest and most maddeningly complex way to go to Oblivion was simply to cease to be here, and begin to be there. Throughout history, there are examples of mages who seemed to travel to the realms beyond ours seemingly at will. Many of these voyagers are long dead, if they ever existed, but we were able to find one still living. In a tower off Zafirbel Bay on the island of Vvardenfell in the province of Morrowind there exists a very old, very reclusive wizard named Divayth Fyr.

He was not easy to reach, and he was reluctant to share with Morian Zenas the secret Door to Oblivion. Fortunately, my master's knowledge of lore impressed Fyr, and he taught him the way. I would be breaking my promise to Zenas and Fyr to explain the procedure here, and I would not divulge it even if I could. If there is dangerous knowledge to be had, that is it. But I do not reveal too much to say that Fyr's scheme relied on exploiting a series of portals to various realms created by a Telvanni wizard long missing and presumed dead. Against the disadvantage of this limited number of access points, we weighed the relative reliability and security of passage, and considered ourselves fortunate in our informant.

Morian Zenas then left this world to begin his exploration. I stayed at the library to transcribe his information and help him with any research he needed.

'Dust,' he whispered to me on the first day of his voyage. Despite the inherent dreariness of the word, I could hear his excitement in his voice, echoing in my mind. 'I can see from one end of the world to the other in a million shades of gray. There is no sky or ground or air, only particles, floating, falling, whirling about me. I must levitate and breathe by magickal means...'

Zenas explored the nebulous land for some time, encountering vaporous creatures and palaces of smoke. Though he never met the Prince, we concluded that he was in Ashpit, said to be the home of Malacath, where anguish, betrayal, and broken promises like ash filled the bitter air.

'The sky is on fire,' I heard him say as he moved on to the next realm. 'The ground is sludge, but traversable. I see blackened ruins all around me, like a war was fought here in the distant past. The air is freezing. I cast blooms of warmth all around me, but it still feels like daggers of ice stabbing me in all directions.'

This was Coldharbour, where Molag Bal was Prince. It appeared to Zenas as if it were a future Nirn, under the King of Rape, desolate and barren, filled with suffering. I could hear Morian Zenas weep at the images he saw, and shiver at the sight of the Imperial Palace, spattered with blood and excrement.

'Too much beauty,' Zenas gasped when he went to the next realm. 'I am half blind. I see flowers and waterfalls, majestic trees, a city of silver, but it is all a blur. The colors run like water. It's raining now, and the wind smells like perfume. This surely is Moonshadow, where Azura dwells.'

Zenas was right, and astonishingly, he even had audience with the Queen of Dusk and Dawn in her rose palace. She listened to his tale with a smile, and told him of the coming of the Nevevarine. My master found Moonshadow so lovely, he wished to stay there, half-blind, forever, but he knew he must move on and complete his journey of discovery.

'I am in a storm,' he told me as he entered the next realm. He described the landscape of dark twisted trees, howling spirits, and billowing mist, and I thought he might have entered the Deadlands of Mehrunes Dagon. But then he said quickly, 'No, I am no longer in a forest. There was a flash of lightning, and now I am on a ship. The mast is tattered. The crew is slaughtered. Something is coming through the waves ... oh, gods ... Wait, now, I am in a dank dungeon, in a cell ...'

He was not in the Deadlands, but Quagmire, the nightmare realm of Vaernima. Every few minutes, there was a flash of lightning and reality shifted, always to something more horrible and horrifying. A dark castle one moment, a den of ravening beasts the next, a moonlit swamp, a coffin where he was buried alive. Fear got the better of my master, and he quickly passed to the next realm.

I heard him laugh, 'I feel like I'm home now.'

Morian Zenas described to me an endless library, shelves stretching on in every direction, stacks on top of stacks. Pages floated on a mystical wind that he could not feel. Every book had a black cover with no title. He could see no one, but felt the presence of ghosts moving through the stacks, rifling through books, ever searching.

It was Apocrypha. The home of Hermaeus-Mora, where all forbidden knowledge can be found. I felt a shudder in my mind, but I could not tell if it was my master's or mine.

Morian Zenas never traveled to another realm that I know of.

Throughout his visits to the first four realms, my master spoke to me constantly. Upon entering the Apocrypha, he became quieter, as he was lured into the world of research and study, the passions that had controlled his heart while on Nirn. I would frantically try to call to him, but he closed his mind to me.

Then he would whisper, 'This cannot be...'

'No one would ever guess the truth...'

'I must learn more...'

'I see the world, a last illusion's shimmer, it is crumbling all around us...'

I would cry back to him, begging him to tell me what was happening, what he was seeing, what he was learning. I even tried using Conjuration to summon him as if he were a Daedra himself, but he refused to leave. Morian Zenas was lost.

I last received a whisper from him six months ago. Before then, it had been five years, and three before that. His thoughts are no longer intelligible in any language. Perhaps he is still in Apocrypha, lost but happy, in a trap he refuses to escape.

Perhaps he slipped between the stacks and passed into the Madhouse of Sheogorath, losing his sanity forever.

I would save him if I could.

I would silence his whispers if I could.

Oghma Infinium

Author: 
Anonymous

Hermaeus Mora

Author: 
Xan

Hermaeus (or Hoermius or Hormaius or Herma) Mora, whose sphere is scrying of the tides of fate, of the past and future as read in the stars and heaven, and in whose dominion are the treasures of knowledge and memory.

Herma-Mora (The Woodland Man): Ancient Atmoran demon who, at one time, nearly seduced the Nords into becoming Aldmer. Most Ysgramor myths are about escaping the wiles of old Herma-Mora. Also called the Demon of Knowledge, he is vaguely related to the cult origins of the Morag Tong ('Foresters Guild'), if only by association with his brother/sister, Mephala.
-
Varieties of Faith in the Empire

As recorded in "The Doors of Oblivion", Hermaeus Mora maintains a realm called Apocrypha, where all forbidden knowledge can be found. It is an endless library, shelves stretching on every direction, stacks on top of stacks. Pages floated on a mystical wind that he could not feel. Every book had a black cover with no title. Masses of ghosts moving through the stacks, rifling through books, ever searching.

The summoning date of Hermaeus Mora is 5th of First Seed.

 Hermaeus Mora in DaggerfallHermaeus Mora's statue in Oblivion

Hermaeus Mora is always associated with the Oghma Infinium, a tome of power that can increase the attributes of the reader instantly. The knowledge given by Hermaeus Mora himself was penned in the tome by the Ageless One, the wizard-sage Xarses.

This obscured Daedric Prince sometime cannot be summoned as "easily" as other Daedric Princes. During the Oblivion Crisis, after the Champion of Cyrodiil finished all the quests from other Daedric Princes, the Champion of Cyrodiil was summoned instead of the champion summoned the Prince. Hermaeus Mora asked the champion to get souls, one of each of the sentient races. An evil contract, the champion finished the contract anyway. Hermaeus Mora then rewarded the champion the Oghma Infinium. Detail conversation of the event can be read here.

The Eternal Champion, back in the time of Jagar Tharn was able to retrieve the tomb in the deep frozen wastes of Skyrim; at that time Hermaues Mora did not interfere. Then the Hero of Daggerfall is recorded as the wielder of the tome, sometime after the War of Betony. The hero summoned Hermaeus Mora, and he was asked to slay certain patrician who had aroused Daedric Prince's displeasure. Upon finishing the quest, the Hero of Daggerfall was rewarded with the legendary tome.

Imperial Census of Daedra Lords

Author: 
Michael Kirkbride

Hey kids,

Still working on the sword-meeting, so in lieu of its presence and in honor of Propitiation Day, I give you "The Imperial Census of Daedra Lords" by the Imperial Geographic Survey. This version of the Census was written before Uriel VII's demise, and is contemporary with the current Pocketguide.

Enjoy.

-MK

***
The Imperial Census of Daedra Lords
Azura, Lord of Dusk and Dawn, maintains the domain of Moonshadow, a twilight country of shades and half-thoughts. Visitors to this isle have historically come mainly from the Dunmer of eastern Morrowind and the catfolk of Elsweyr, whose people both hold a great affection for the mother of immanence, though by separate roads. At the time of this writing, regular gateways to Moonshadow have been inaccessible for the last several years. Whether this has to do with the unlawful incidents at Hogithum Hall in the Capital City or mere whim of Azura herself, no one can say. Of course, Azura’s most famous acts of recent times is the Incarnation of the Nerevarine, a subject that while far beyond the scope of this pamphlet has been felt to the present day.

Boethiah, the so-called Prince of Plots, has renamed his country of labyrinthine policy and betrayals yet again. Formerly “Snake Mount”, Prince Boethiah’s maze gardens and twisted towers is called “Attribution’s Share”, a realm best avoided by those that live outside the arcano-politic. Boethiah, like his cohort Azura, is much revered by the followers of the former Tribunal Temple, but sub-cults of his are entrenched in nearly every terrestrial seat of governance. His traditional festival date is the 2nd of Sun’s Dusk, when many contracts are writ between kings and commoners alike.

Clavicus Vile, child-god of the Morningstar, bestows a strange tranquility to his lands that seem concordant to his spheres of mockery and oath breaking, though what shape such concepts might take is admittedly unfathomable. Perhaps by rendering his domains as idyllic countryside the Prince exemplifies his greatest aspect, and that which ingratiates him to his many followers, the power of serenity through wish fulfillment. Only the strongest of the Emperor’s servants are advised to make covenant with Prince Clavicus, and even then are warned against sipping from the Bitter Cup.

Hermaeus Mora, “the Gardener of Men”, claims that he is one of the oldest Princes, born of thrown-away ideas used during the creation of mortality in the Mundus. Imperial Mananauts have verified that his influence on fate and time is real and unfeigned, implications of which tie this Prince directly with Akatosh, chief of the Nine Divines. Since Akatosh is the prime temporal spirit whose appearance led to the formation of the world, perhaps Hermaeus Mora speaks the truth. Nevertheless, it is the will of His Majesty Uriel VII that only on the official holiday of 5th First Seed should any propitiation to this Daedric Prince be delivered. “All else is mutation.”

Hircine’s Hunting Grounds have been closed by consensus of the Elder Council until further notice. It is mentioned here only for the sake of completeness.

Malacath holds the hardest to access of Oblivion’s extant lands, the Ashpit. As Prince Patron of the disenfranchised and cast out, it is only reasonable that the pathways to his domain take on a characteristic level of concealment. Orsinium, kingdom of the Orcs, gives Malacath its highest esteem, which is surprising when one considers the normal Orcish revilement of Daedric spirits. One might conjecture then that the rumors of Malacath not being a true Daedroth but an imprisoned aetherial spirit are true. It would certainly fit the Prince of Exile that he be one himself.

Mehrunes Dagon, Lord of Razors, has proven himself time and again the enemy of the Empire. Of terrible aspect and crowned in beaten copper, the four-armed Prince of Destruction has troubled the borders of the Mundus with warfare, foul rumor, and force of arms. Banished to dissolution during the Weir Gate massacre and again at Kvatch by battlemages of the 33rd, Mehrunes Dagon is returned to Oblivion once more, and the stars have foretold that his tenacity has known no forfeiture. All heroes of Cyrodiil are called upon to stand vigil against his hidden agencies.

Mephala’s domains in Oblivion are numerous and obscured, collected together by vast strands of magical ghostweb. All of them are devoted to her spheres of sex and secret murder. Echoing this same structure are the various esoteric cults devoted to her across Tamriel, many of which are forbidden by Imperial law. Her aspect is shrouded and manifold, even when she appears in the crowds that gather within her temples during Frost Fall.

Meridia’s holdings in Oblivion are collectively known as “The Colored Rooms”. Another Prince whose origins may not entirely be outside of the aetherial, Meridia has at several times been linked to Magnus the Sun. The most famous account of this association is the Tract of Merid-nunda, which overtly casts Meridia in the role of a wayward solar daughter, cast from the heavens for consorting with illicit spectra.

Molag Bal, King of Strife, is second only to his brother Prince Mehrunes Dagon in the enmity of our Emperor. His lands are the charnel houses the slave pens of Coldharbour, which hold no contrition for those travelers that visit them in error or purpose. That Molag Bal is allowed his holiday at all hearkens back to a treaty of ancient times, when he reputedly lent his infernal power to the creation of the first soulgems.

Namira’s Scuttling Void has been closed by consensus of the Elder Council until further notice. It is mentioned here only for the sake of completeness.

Nocturnal is accorded the title Ur-dra by nearly all the Royalty of Oblivion. As the mother of night, she claims to be an aspect of the original Void itself, and it is generally deemed best to fortify this declaration in one’s evening prayers.

Peryite’s pits have always been inaccessible to mortals. Our only real knowledge of them comes from reports of the other diabolical Princes. It is said that Peryite guards the lowest orders of Oblivion and that his summoners are to regard his likeness to Akatosh as some primordial and curious jest.

Sanguine, Prince of Hedonism, lords over no less than ten times ten thousand pleasure pockets of the Void. As revelry and drunken stupor fall under this Prince’s influence, he has been a favorite of many Emperors since the first foundation. Records even indicate that he resided in White-Gold Tower during the reign of Reman Cyrodiil and helped in the somewhat dubious draftsmanship of the Crendali Festivals, whose vulgarities did little to help Imperial expansion into Alinor and the other Summersets.

Sheogorath’s Asylums have been closed by consensus of the Elder Council until further notice. It is mentioned here only for the sake of completeness.

Vaernima, Prince of Omen and Dream, shares a special mageographic connection with the Mundus, since mortal sleepers often slip into her realm without any help at all. Traditional sacrifice to Vaernima is held on the 10th of Suns Height, but as with most luck spirits, prayers to this Daedric Prince occur quite frequently, and not always before bedtime.