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This article is about the city on the mainland. For the castle on Vvardenfell, see Castle Ebonheart.

Type Settlement
Continent Tamriel
Province Morrowind
Region Stonefalls
Subregions Zabamat
Appears in Arena, ESO
Ebonheart circa 2E 582
Ebonheart during the Imperial Simulacrum

Ebonheart, also known as the Black City[1] or Old Ebonheart,[2] is one of the eight major cities in the province of Morrowind,[3] situated on the south-central coastline of the Inner Sea, within the region of Stonefalls. Ebonheart is the ancestral home of the Ra'athim Clan, an ancient family of miners that have become some of Morrowind's greatest leaders, including Moraelyn and Katariah. Ebonheart was once the capital of Morrowind, before Moraelyn's twin grandsons were left joint heirs, which became modern-day Ebonheart and Mournhold.[4]

Layout & Geography[edit]

Ebonheart is situated in the central coast of Stonefalls, on the eastern edge of the region of Zabamat, which encompasses the southwest coast of the Inner Sea, primarily consisting of farmlands and sulfur pools. The stronghold of Heimlyn Keep overlooks the region, and the valley of the Brothers of Strife looms from the south, along with the Tormented Spire. Ebonheart is built on the estuary of a river which flows from mountains separating Stonefalls from Deshaan. West of the city outskirts lies Vivec's Antlers, a battlefield consisting of the best-known example of Land Coral. The site was used as a battlefield in conflicts such as the Second Akaviri Invasion and the Alliance War. Off the northern coast of Ebonheart is Stonefang Isle, which contained a temple dedicated to the Good Daedra. Ebonheart has several neighboring settlements, such as Darnim Watch in the east, Eagle Moor and Mournhold in the southeast, Old Keep in the far southeast, Riverbridge to the southwest, and Stonefalls to the northwest.[3]

Ebonheart is a walled-off city built atop of an island. The seat of power is the centerpiece of the town, as the main square and various buildings are found around it. The local inn, The Ebony Flask, is on the eastern wall, with Ash Mountain shadowing over the inn. On the opposite side of The Ebony Flask lies the local Tribunal Temple. The area outside the gates is an open area, where various camps and even the stables can be found. Ashlanders and Nords can be seen trading with locals in this area. Outside the northern walls consists of Ebonheart's Argonian population, and the local Hist tree. The harbor is found on the northwest, with several skiffs docked for fishermen. At three points on the outskirts of Ebonheart are shrines to the Tribunal: Sotha Sil in the north near Stonefang Isle; Almalexia in the southeast, off the road; and Vivec in the southwest, off the road.


During the Skyrim Conquests, the city of Ebonheart was ruled by King Kronin of the Ra'athim, and his city was taken over the Nords. After the battle, Kronin's family, including his three sons, Cruethys, Moraelyn, and S'ephen took to raiding, via guerrilla warfare. Eventually, the group had re-claimed the city from the Nords, who were ultimately driven out of Morrowind in 1E 416 when the combined force of both Indoril Nerevar and Dumac Dwarfking defeated them.[5] Sometime later, Moraelyn's brother, Cruethys assumed the throne of Ebonheart, who would pass away and give his throne to Moraelyn. During his reign, Moraelyn had created a temple cult dedicated to his brother, Ephen, who was an illegitimate heir to the throne. Moraelyn had entrusted the Staff of Chaos to his brother, who would in turn, safeguard it in a subterranean cavern underneath Mournhold, his birthplace.[6] Moraelyn's lineage would continue to rule from Ebonheart, under his daughter, Lian, and eventually, her twin sons, both of whom were left joint-heirs to the throne. At this point, the High Kingship of Morrowind was left vacant, because of a provincial emergency. This, along with the joint-heirs caused a schism that became modern-day Ebonheart and Mournhold. All the while, Ebonheart was the capital of Morrowind, until that position was given to Mournhold.[7] It is because of the Staff of Chaos' position in the city and the events that transpired in 1E 2920, when the Daedric Prince, Mehrunes Dagon had sacked the city and the Tribunal, Almalexia had intervened, vying to protect Mournhold from any other threat. Ever since then, Mournhold was named the capital of Morrowind.[8]

The Sigil of the Ebonheart Pact

In the Second Akaviri Invasion in 2E 572, Ebonheart played a pivotal role in the conflict, as the aftermath of the battle resulted in the signing of the Ebonheart Pact. The Snow Demons of Kamal invaded the northeastern provinces of Morrowind and Skyrim, under the command of Ada'Soom Dir-Kamal, a warlord of his land. After a successful attack on the city-state of Windhelm, the Kamali Army moved into the southeast, into Vivec's Antlers and the outskirts of Ebonheart. The Akaviri were ultimately defeated by the combined forces of the Nords, the Dark Elves, and the Argonians. The leading figures of each race traveled for Ebonheart, where they signed the treaty for the Ebonheart Pact, an alliance created as a means of survival against the rising powers of the west.[9][10]

Ten years later, in 2E 582, the city-state of Ebonheart, along with its sister city, Kragenmoor were cities under the control of the Great House Dres, with the former under the reign of Drathus Othral. House Dres typically has control in the southeast of Morrowind, around the border cities of Tear and Thorn, yet they also had holdings in western Stonefalls.[11] At this point in time, the Daggerfall Covenant had invaded Stonefalls, beginning with an invasion at Davon's Watch and conquest over Bleakrock Isle. A Dunmer traitor, Rhavil Urano had plotted against the Pact by causing unrest between the three races in Ebonheart. His plans were ultimately foiled by an Agent of the Pact. Regardless, another battle at Vivec's Antlers ensued between the Pact and the Covenant.[12]

Sometime around 2E 583, Vivec of the Tribunal had traveled to Ebonheart along with the Archcanon of Vivec City, Tarvus. Vivec strolled through Ebonheart's streets, examining the architecture through the city. Vivec's fascination with the Black City had inspired him to commission a second Ebonheart on the island of Vvardenfell, not far from his own city. This would take several years to come into fruition but by 3E 414, when the Treaty of the Armistice is revoked and Vvardenfell becomes an Imperial Provincial District. The harbor-town of Castle Ebonheart served as the Imperial capital of Vvardenfell, under the command of Vedam Dren of House Hlaalu.[13][14]

During the War of the Red Diamond, the city-state of Ebonheart, and by extension, House Ra'athim were allies of Potema Septim of Solitude, among other nations like Glenpoint. The relationship between Ebonheart and the Third Empire was not in good balance, because of the former's relationship with Potema. To cement a proper relationship, Emperor Magnus Septim arranged a marriage between his son, Pelagius Septim III, and the Duchess of Vvardenfell, Katariah of the Ra'athim. Pelagius III, or more commonly known as, Pelagius the Mad was infamous throughout the Empire, a diplomat from Ebonheart had described Pelagius III as "a hale and hearty soul with a heart so big, it widens his waist." When it came time that Pelagius III would inherit the Ruby Throne from his father, Magnus, Katariah would basically assume the role of Empress, while Pelagius III would willow in his own madness.[15] Katariah ruled over the Third Empire until her death in 3E 200.[16]

During the Imperial Simulacrum in the late Third Era, the city-state of Ebonheart was ruled by King Casik and had rivalries with several cities (namely Mournhold, Kragenmoor, Firewatch, and Blacklight).[1] At one point in time, the Eternal Champion had arrived into Ebonheart, seeking out the final piece of the Staff of Chaos in Morrowind, which had been split into various pieces by the Battlemage, Jagar Tharn. All the while, King Casik had come into possession of the Anvil of Mithas, a legendary anvil from the greatest Dwemer Smith, Mithas. Casik had sent the Eternal Champion to the fortress of Black Gate to retrieve the Hammer of Gharen, an artifact that is strong enough, not to shatter when using it on sharp steel. When the Champion returned from Black Gate, the Hammer was stricken on the Anvil, revealing the location of the Dwarven Mines in Dagoth-Ur. Eventually, the Eternal Champion had recovered the final piece, and made their way to the Imperial City for their final battle.[17]


  • Arena was originally conceived as a fighting game featuring a tournament that took the player to each of Tamriel's cities to challenge different gladiatorial teams. According to a file from that stage of development left behind in the final game, Ebonheart's gladiatorial team would have been called "the Reavers".[UOL 1]
  • On the concept map of Morrowind, Ebonheart was depicted as a holding of House Hlaalu, and the river on which it stood was called River Thir.[UOL 2]


  1. ^ a b Ebonheart location and rumors in Arena
  2. ^ The description of Heirloom Ebony Ash Yam Slow Cooker in ESO
  3. ^ a b Map of Morrowind — The Elder Scrolls: Arena
  4. ^ The Real Barenziah, v 5 — Anonymous
  5. ^ King Edward, Part X
  6. ^ King Edward, Part XII
  7. ^ The Real Barenziah, v 4 — Anonymous
  8. ^ 2920, Sun's DuskCarlovac Townway
  9. ^ The Second Akaviri InvasionYngmaer Raven-Quill, Historian Royal of the Bards' College, Solitude
  10. ^ Guide to the Ebonheart Pact
  11. ^ Drathus Othral's dialogue in ESO
  12. ^ Restoring Order quest in ESO
  13. ^ On Moving EbonheartArchcanon Tarvus
  14. ^ Ebonheart location in Morrowind
  15. ^ The Madness of PelagiusTsathenes
  16. ^ Brief History of the Empire v 2Stronach k'Thojj III
  17. ^ Dagoth-Ur quest in Arena

Note: the following references are not from official sources. They are included to provide a rounder background to this article, but may not reflect established lore.

  1. ^ Original TES: Arena texts at the Imperial Library
  2. ^ Concept map of Morrowind