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Lothern
Lothern Art
Vital statistics
Inhabitants High Elves
Type Capital city, cityport
Location Ulthuan, Eataine
Population Several thousands
Allegiance Phoenix King Finubar
Industry International trade

Lothern is the greatest city of Ulthuan. Situated within Eataine, Lothern is the political capital city. Human merchants are allowed to trade here and the city has been and is a busy centre of international trade since the beginning of Phoenix King Finubar's reign in 2163 IC.[2d] Home to several thousand High Elves the fortress city is guarded by 10,000 strong Lothern Sea Guard besides sporting mighty walls and numerous defences.[1a][2a]

Overview Edit

As the source of Eataine's prosperity, Lothern has long been the traditional seat of the Phoenix King — Caledor the Conqueror kept court here, and few of his successors chose to break with that tradition.[5a]

The Lothern Sea Guard, meanwhile, are the finest of Eataine's warriors. Skilled in both spear and bow, these veteran soldiers fight the Phoenix King's battles both on land and at sea. Should the armies of Ulthuan make war in a distant land, it is invariably the ships of Lothern that bear them hence, and the disciplined advance of the Lothern Sea Guard that will seize the beachheads.[5a]

The city is also home to the Temple of the Phoenix Kings — the only site beyond the Isle of Flame which is protected by the Phoenix Guard.[5a] It also holds the largest library in all Eataine, as well as mansions owned by famous magi such as Inglorion Starweaver and Khaladris.[6a]

Beyond the inner walls, lampposts lit with incandescent magic keep the night at bay. Long streets wind up tree-clad hills. Many flights of stairs run up the steeper slopes. There are palaces with towers and spiked minarets. Palm trees, roof gardens. Seemingly endless streets full of echoing, half-empty palaces, and there are fountains everywhere. All seems like a legion of sculptors had been kept busy for many ages of the world beautifying the city with statues of mages and warriors and kings, as well as lawmakers, orators and poets. The stone is worked to look life-like, auras of glamour and ancient warding sorceries protecting the work from the ravages of time and weather. Most of these, however, were made for political reasons, to represent the power and wealth of the people who commissioned them. As the White Lion Korhien Ironglaive once put it: "They praise the ancestors of those people, or in many cases the living elves themselves".[6b]

Farther away from the gates, the crowds thin out and the streets seem much emptier. Some of the houses, not too far from the main thoroughfare, have patched and crumbling roofs. People gaze out of half-shuttered windows with a lean and hungry look to them, although as far as some elves know there is no hunger or famine in Ulthuan.[6b]

Unfortunately, the elves of Lothern are looked down upon by the inhabitants of the other elven lands. They are seen as money-grubbing merchants, not proud warriors or noble wizards, all in spite of Finubar being the first Phoenix King to have been born in Lothern, let alone Eataine.[6b]

Defences Edit

Approaching Lothern, the first thing a mariner sees is the Glittering Tower — a great lighthouse filled with thousands of lamps, situated on a rocky isle in the mouth of the treacherous straits of Lothern. This titanic fortress guards the approach to the Emerald Gate, the first of Lotherns three sea gates. Anyone approaching the Emerald Gate can easily be caught in a crossfire between the massive war engines in the Glittering Tower and those on the Gate itself. The sight of these imposing bastions is enough to turn all but the most insane attackers away.[2b][3a][4a]

The Emerald Gate Edit

A great fortified arch filled with war machines and the cloaked spearmen and archers of the Lothern Sea Guard, the Emerald Gate holds two gigantic valves of carved bronze set with monstrous emeralds to bar the way. For those ships permitted, however, they smoothly swing back through the churning waters to reveal the Straits of Lothern.[1a][2b][3a]

Any who are allowed through the Emerald Gate pass through the wide channel of the Straits, sheer cliff faces lined with castles, ramparts and defences all constantly garrisoned by the well-armed and alert warriors of the Sea Guard.[1a][2b][3a][4a]

The Sapphire Gate Edit

A second portal bars the way for shining silver set with sapphires the size of a man's head, beyond which lies a huge lagoon where thousands of vessels of every conceivable size and shape, from tiny pleasure craft to the mighty warships of the High Elf fleet, lie at anchor. The walls shelter the city from the worst of weather, as well as all incoming marauders.[6b] The city itself is not simply built around the lagoon; at some points artificial islands have been built within its waters. On these rest great palaces, temples, and storehouses forming an intricate network of canals.[1b][2b][3a]

Statue of Aenarion Edit

In the centre of the harbour, upon a plinth as large as a small island, the gigantic statue of Aenarion stands two-hundred feet tall. The huge stone warrior is depicted leaning on the great sword Sunfang, around which flames seem to writhe. He gazes outward, the line of his vision passing far over the heads of passing viewers as if he were looking into the distance and seeing things further and higher than any mere mortal might view. It is said that this statue was made from drawings and paintings saved from before his fall. Those who knew him say it was accurate. Even Morathi remarked it was a likeness to the life, or so the historian Aergeon claims. When he came to Lothern at the age of sixteen, Teclis noted how the statue's brow was furrowed in thought, and there was a haunted look about his eyes that the sculptors had somehow caught. He did not look merely bold or complacently self-confident or simply brave. He looked lonely and a little lost and burdened by the weight of an awesome responsibility.[6b]

Meanwhile, towering an equal two hundred foot-high[1b] statues of the Phoenix King Finubar (on the western edge)[6b] and the Everqueen face each other across the mouth of the bay. Around the edges of the harbour are other great statues of the Elven Gods: Asuryan, Lileath, Kurnous, Isha, and many others. As dusk falls, the statues blaze briefly with white flame: all save that of Khaine, whose eyes and hands glow blood-red.[2c][3a][4a]

Around this lagoon sits Lothern itself, and this is as far as any non-Elf may travel — outsiders are forbidden to pass through the third Gate of Ruby and Gold and into the Inner Sea. In these days of dwindling, Lothern is as much a foreign city as an Elven one, for the many merchants who bustle through its streets now seem as numerous as the High Elves with whom they trade.[2c][3a][4a]

Foreigners' Quarter Edit

By the 10th year of the Seafarer (2173 IC), the Foreigner's Quarter contained almost as many humans as the entire city did elves. Here outsiders are allowed to wander without escort or special permission from the King. Merchants from as far away as Cathay can be found here, trading in goods the High Elves do not have easy access to such as gold, silver, gems, and Dwarf-made clockworks (the dawi refuse to trade directly with the Elves). They sell tobacco, ores, wool, bring preserved meats and grains and books of lore. Asur from the old kingdoms of Ulthuan would scoff at ever needing something from outsiders. Not so the elves of Lothern.[6b]

The architecture of the quarter had taken on a humanish look. Brick buildings leaned at crazy angles against the remnants of much older elven structures. Ancient palaces had been turned into vast warrens and mazes of dwellings and shops and merchants offices. Carpets hung overhead, draped over wooden racks intended to display them to best advantage. Perhaps it would have worked as intended if the skylights had not been blackened with soot and grime and the shadowy interiors of the corridors lit only by lanterns and flambeaux.[6c]

Merchants argue prices. Harlots lead drunken sailors into side alleys and in pairs they hump and groan against the walls. In quiet corners, men play chess on odd-looking boards with carved wooden pieces of strange design.[6c]

Despite Dwarfs not directly trading, Imperial Dwarfs can be found here in addition to their human counterparts.[6c]

Watch Hill Edit

Beyond the north gate of the city, and along the Sea Road, lies the path leading to the Watch Hill. Here, duelists intent of the Circle of Blades arrive, tradition being that one protagonist arrives by the left-hand path, while the other takes the right-hand path. From the hill, one has a fine view of the Inner Sea approach and the Northern Walls of Lothern. Though not as impressive as the view of the Great Harbour coming in from the ocean, it is still striking to behold. One can see over the walls and notice the slate roofs of the buildings, the layout of the streets, and the size of the largest statues. From here, the waters of the Inner Sea are a calm mirror.[6d]

HeraldryEdit

100px-Lothern

A depiction of Amanar, the Sea Dragon.

The banners and shields of Lothern bear the image of the Sea Dragon Amanar, ancient protector of Lothern. Legend tells that Amanar sleeps fitfully beneath the Emerald Gate, and that he will rise up to defend Lothern in its hour of greatest need.[5a]

The Sea Lords of Lothern have borne the same heraldry for over four thousand years.[5a]

Sources Edit

  • 1: Warhammer Armies: High Elves (4th Edition)
    • 1a: pg. 6
    • 1b: pg. 7
  • 2: Warhammer Armies: High Elves (5th Edition)
    • 2a: pg. 4
    • 2b: pg. 5
    • 2c: pg. 7
    • 2d: pg. 28
  • 3: Warhammer Armies: High Elves (7th Edition)
    • 3a: pg. 8
  • 4: Warhammer Armies: High Elves (8th Edition)
    • 4a: pg. 9
  • 5: Warhammer Expansion: Uniforms & Heraldry of the High Elves
    • 5a: pg. 10
    • 5b: pg. 11
    • 5c: pg. 12
    • 5d: pg. 13
  • 6: Blood of Aenarion (Novel), by William King
    • 6a: Chapter 5
    • 6b: Chapter 9
    • 6c: Chapter 17
    • 6d: Chapter 22
  • Defenders of Ulthuan (Novel), by Grahan Mcneill
    • Book One
      • Chapter One
      • Chapter Two

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