The Bards College is an institute found in the city of Solitude, within the province of Skyrim. The Bards College is well-known throughout the province as a prominent institute of music and history for the aspiring bard, or the Skald as they are known in Skyrim. Students of the Bards College are known to be well-trained and successful in their business. More often than not, a former student of the Bards College are employed in various noble households and have even entertained the Elder Council of the Imperial City. The college can be marked by the Flames of Callisos, which is found at the entrance. As long as the flames remained lit, the College will stand. The Bards College has two known departments, in History and Lute (Music). The Bards College, many poets, and historians write poems and stories in the Poetic Edda, a collection of endless poems that depict Skyrim's extended history.
The Bards College was founded when Skyrim was a part of the First Empire, roughly during the twilight years of Ysgramor's dynasty, and the years following. At one point, Solitude was sacked by Olaf One-Eye in the late years of the War of Succession, and sometime later, Solitude and the Bards College would make a yearly tradition based on Olaf's exploits. The College's students flood the markets to celebrate for a week and end it with the Burning of King Olaf, where everyone gathers at the college courtyard to burn an effigy that depicts King Olaf One-Eye. This tradition would continue for many centuries, to celebrate Olaf's victory over Numinex and his ascension to the throne. More and more famous bards and scholars would come from the Bards College, such as Callisos and Morachellis. The now famous, Flames of Callisos was named after the alumni.
Many years later, during the Skyrim Civil War in 4E 201, the Bards College was administrated by Headmaster Viarmo, who choose to keep the politics of the civil war away from his institute. At this time, Jarl Elisif the Fair had canceled the annual Burning of King Olaf, as she considered it poor taste after the assassination of her husband, High King Torygg. To persuade her to change her mind, Viarmo had sent a student of the college to find a lost verse of the Poetic Edda, King Olaf's Verse, written by the First Era skald, Svaknir. The student found themselves at Dead Man's Respite, the burial place of High King Olaf One-Eye. The student had brought back King Olaf's Verse and presented it to Jarl Elisif. The burning of the effigy would commence that year, and continue to do so.
- Morachellis Hag-Husband