Open main menu

UESPWiki β

Lore:House Telvanni

< Lore: Factions: H
SR-banner-House Telvanni.png
"House Telvanni matches the disposition of my brother Sotha Sil -- iconoclastic, profane, unconventional."Vivec[1]

House Telvanni (also called Clan Telvanni,[2] the Brown Party of Telvanni[3] or "brown hats")[4] is one of the Great Houses of Morrowind. It governs the Telvanni District of northeastern Morrowind, including the coastal settlements of Port Telvannis and Tel Mothrivra,[5] and the eastern portion of the Vvardenfell District from its council seat in Sadrith Mora, home of the Great House's main leadership.[UOL 1] They once controlled the Telvanni Peninsula,[6] but no longer have any properties on the mainland as of the Fourth Era.[7] They value talent, knowledge, and initiative.[8] The house is comprised primarily of wizard-lords who have traditionally isolated themselves and protected commoners in their mushroom-hut villages, pursuing wisdom and mastery in solitude, and generally being quite peaceful.[8][9] The Telvanni don't care about politics or what others think, staying out of matters beyond their lands as to not trouble anyone, and only want to be left alone in peace to do as they wish and live comfortably. The wizard-lords and their mercenaries keep the people secure, and otherwise leave them alone. By bringing prosperity to their tower, honor to the house, and security to kinsmen and retainers, wizard-lords thereby insure the health, wealth, and security of their house and its people.[8][10] They are called the most xenophobic of the Dunmer and shun contact with outsiders, preferring to sell bug-musk and tend their herds of giant insects amid the rocky hills and islands of the extreme far-off ends of the province.[2]

Members of the House can rise through the ranks by eliminating or otherwise 'indisposing' other members, and stealing from other Telvanni and living shows that you deserve it.[11] Most Telvanni lords want little more than to be left alone to their research and ambitions, although many did enjoy the friendly company of their neighbors rather than remaining in isolation.[12] As passionate isolationists, they disdain to claim new holdings. A minority of wizards-lords called "rogue Telvanni" are highly ambitious and egocentric, and were known to compete ruthlessly among themselves for arcane mastery and to control and exploit Vvardenfell's resources. The House believed that these young wizards were expendable, and would be less trouble to the rest of the Telvanni if they were off on Vvardenfell island stirring up trouble with the other colonists. House Telvanni publicly denies supporting the rogue settlements.[8][10][13]

They neighbor the Indoril District, and through their kinship with the legendary Tribunes the Indoril dominated many of their borders on the mainland for over 3,000 years up until the Armistice,[14][15] resulting in the Telvanni keeping to themselves on the far-off edges of the province.[2] In general, the Telvanni did not interact with other Houses or Guilds, nor did they have many enemies save for Abolitionists and the Imperial Mages Guild, and did not intend to be presided over by any other institutions (particularly the Guild of the Third Era and their monopoly).[16] However, the Telvanni themselves were universally disliked or disapproved of by all other factions found in Vvardenfell as late as 3E 427.[17] On the other hand, the Telvanni did not have the usual hatred of vampires that most other factions held. Their lords and Mouths were willing to speak to vampires; wizards did not fear vampires nearly as much as other folk did.[18]

The Telvanni are careless in observance of Temple teaching and less invested in it as the other houses,[3] preferring to place an emphasis on ancestor worship.[19] Saint Vorys the Immolant was the patron saint of House Telvanni as late as 2E 582,[19] but fell out of reverence by 3E 427.[UOL 2]


First EraEdit

"The forceful expression of will gives true honor to the Ancestors."Mottos of the Dunmeri Great Houses
The Telvanni Crest

House Telvanni was founded in ancient times, predating the War of the First Council and at some point after the formation of the Psijic Order, around the early First Era.[UOL 3] In his 36 Lessons, Vivec speaks of a monster called the Pocket Cabal hiding itself in the spell-lists of the great Chimeri wizards of the extreme east (believed to have eventually become the Telvanni), where the Emperor Parasols grow wild near towers, libraries, and slave pens. The tenuous sense-fabric he wore drew out a giant bug with the greatest eastern wizard inside it, who scolded Vivec for creating the monster, and Vivec stabbed him through his soul.[20]

Prior to the War, thirty of the most influential and revered Chimer Clans worked together to build the fabled Library of Andule, a grand repository containing the genealogical records related to the earliest Velothi settlers and other assorted knowledge about the earliest history of the Great Houses.[21] Six of the thirty Revered Families hailed from House Telvanni; the Andas, Hlervu, Lleran, Releth, Sadryon, and Telvayn Clans.[22] The locations of the tombs were presumed lost in the aftermath of the War of the First Council, along with the Library of Andule and the records contained within.[21] The six tombs were rediscovered in 2E 582, alongside the other twenty-four families and the Library of Andule itself.[23]

Telvanni dust adepts (left) and wizard (right) from the mainland holdings

In ancient times, the Telvanni built Heimlyn Keep, the site of a relic vault which the House was charged with protecting. The relic vault was used to seal away objects of mystical potency that were considered too dangerous to circulate in the world.[24][25]

House Telvanni was already an active Chimer House by the time the War of the First Council broke out in earnest, and fought alongside House Indoril, Dres, Redoran and Hlaalu against the secular House Dagoth and the Dwemer. Early in the conflict, they and the other Great Houses were considered dispersed and poorly organized, suffering multiple defeats until Indoril Nerevar was made Hortator. Nerevar eventually gathered the Houses and Ashlander Clans to attack the fortress of Red Mountain which led to a victory at the Battle of Red Mountain. When the nascent Tribunal Temple moved forward to re-create the First Council, which they renamed as the Grand Council of Morrowind, House Telvanni was admitted as one of the ruling Great Houses.[26] The House would at some point adopt brown as its official identifying color.[9][27][4]

At some point, a Telvanni wizard created a series of portals to various realms. Later this wizard went missing and was presumed dead, but his portals were later relied on and exploited by Divayth Fyr, who would go on to become one of the most powerful members of the House, alongside an ally.[28] Fyr himself had trafficked with the Daedra before by choice, although he only interacted with Azura and Mehrunes Dagon.[29]

Second EraEdit

In the Second Era, a member of House Telvanni created the Vvardvark during an experiment. The creatures spread throughout the island of Vvardenfell, and were wiped out by the Ash Blight centuries later.[30][31][32]

During the year 2E 572, Morrowind was invaded by the Kamal of Akavir in what became known as the Second Akaviri Invasion. The invasion force completely bypassed the Telvanni Peninsula and Vvardenfell, both which had holdings of House Telvanni along the Sea of Ghosts, leaving the House unaffected by the conflict.[33] After the conflict, the Redoran, Indoril, Dres, and Hlaalu signed an alliance with the Nords of Eastern Skyrim and the Argonians of northern Black Marsh, creating the Ebonheart Pact. Much to the chagrin of the other houses, the Telvanni refused to join to alliance.[34] Around the same time, they were also pushing the Ahemmusa Tribe of Ashlanders out of their former grounds in the isle of Vvardenfell during a period of expansion.[35] At this time, the main leadership of House Telvanni was centered in Sadrith Mora, with only a handful of masters ruling the lands in the Telvanni Peninsula in a local conclave.[UOL 1]

A Second Era Telvanni

Ten years later in 2E 582, the Telvanni (now the main bastion of slavery in Tamriel) looked to provinces outside the Ebonheart Pact for slave labor. They employed slavers who sailed as far as High Rock and Hammerfell to acquire goods. Members of the House occasionally requested that their slavers acquire individuals of specific race, age, gender, build or personal background for a variety of reasons. A house member could be looking for healthy young men to perform physical labor, older men to serve as chaperones, or someone with specific knowledge to perform a specialized task, such as pigkeeping.[36] On Vvardenfell, the Cammona Tong was employed to recapture escaped slaves. The Tong was even more feared among slaves than the Telvanni.[37] At this time, House Telvanni was ruled by Archmagister Nelos Otheri.[38]

Nelos Otheri, Archmagister of House Telvanni circa 2E 582

Slavers employed by House Telvanni often used tactics such as extinguishing lighthouse beacons to bait incoming ships into wrecking, allowing the slavers to capture the disoriented survivors.[39] One such raid was conducted on Koeglin Village in the Iliac Bay in 2E 582.[40][41]

During the Three Banners War, Heimlyn Keep was attacked by a contingent of soldiers from the Daggerfall Covenant, who mistakenly believed Heimlyn Keep was a military training ground for mages.[42] Despite their refusal to join the Pact, House Telvanni still upheld their responsibilities in central Morrowind, which included tending to the relic vault.[25] A wanderer aided House Telvanni after the raid, eliminating the source of the plague.[43] The vault was re-sealed and the people of Heimlyn Keep were saved from catastrophe.[44]

An agent of House Telvanni was sent to steal Covenant warship designs from the shipyard at Tava's Blessing in the Alik'r Desert. The agent was attacked by necromancers that had invaded the port, although she managed to get the designs.[45] It is unknown if the agent was able to bring the documents back to Morrowind.[46]

Concurrently, Magister Therana hoped to study the finger bone of Saint Felms. A traveler extracted the relic from Zaintiraris, a Daedric ruin in Redoran territory, on behalf of an Argonian slave named Sun-in-Shadow.[47] The Magister agreed to endorse Sun-in-Shadow's bid for freedom in exchange for the relic.[48][49]

That same year, Mistress Dratha was poisoned by a Telvanni wizard named Savarak who bargained with House Hlaalu to depose the Magister. House Hlaalu coveted Dratha's territory, and Savarak desired Dratha's position as Magister.[50] They infected Dratha's mushroom tower with infectious spores in an attempt to kill her, but their plot was stopped by Dratha's Mouth with the assistance of a traveler. After her brush with death, Mistress Dratha sought to prolong her life. She had the traveler retrieve the seven Stones of Cold Fire so she could bargain with the Daedra to achieve immortality.[51][52][53][54]

Near the close of the Second Era, the land-hungry Third Empire turned its attention to the unconquered nation of Morrowind. When war seemed inevitable, House Telvanni remained neutral, rejecting the Redoran approach of holding the invaders at the borders, the Indoril and Dres approach of fighting a guerilla war within Morrowind itself, and the Hlaalu approach of accommodation. When Vivec revealed his intent to willingly join the Empire with the Treaty of the Armistice, House Telvanni was the third Great House to accept the terms, following House Hlaalu and House Redoran.[15]

Third EraEdit

The wizard-lords of House Telvanni have traditionally isolated themselves, pursuing wisdom and mastery in solitude. But certain ambitious wizard-lords, their retainers, and clients have entered wholeheartedly into the competition to control and exploit Vvardenfell's land and resources, building towers and bases all along the eastern coast. According to Telvanni principles, the powerful define the standards of virtue. — Great Houses of Morrowind

During the Third Era, the city of Sadrith Mora was the district seat of the Telvanni on Vvardenfell, even though the Archmagister, Gothren, did not live there, but resided in nearby Tel Aruhn. Sadrith Mora was home to the Council Hall, in which each Telvanni lord was represented by a lieutenant with the title of "Mouth". In general, the actual lords themselves lived in their own towers and did not attend the Council. Even Master Neloth of Tel Naga, who resided nearby in Sadrith Mora, did not attend the Council. Some great Telvanni opted out of the rat race for power within the Council entirely due to their isolationism. But, among those who actually cared about who the leader was, the ever-procrastinating Archmagister Gothren of Tel Aruhn, few ever voiced their opinions.[55]

Master Aryon of Tel Vos

In 3E 426, the House Telvanni Council formally ignored the repeated protests by Vedam Dren, Duke of Vvardenfell and Grandmaster of House Hlaalu, and other Great House representatives on the subject of the ambitions and enterprise of its individual members and Telvanni exploration and colonization of the wastes and wildernesses of Vvardenfell. The Telvanni Council refused to place restraint on both matters, citing "ancient law and custom." At the same time, the council renewed its objection to proposals placed before Duke Dren and the Grand Council concerning slavery and slave trading in Vvardenfell District. Their arguments cited the right to own and trade slaves being guaranteed by the terms of the Treaty of the Armistice, and would not entertain any discussion of abridgements of those rights.[27]

Areas of Vvardenfell controlled by House Telvanni in 3E 427(brown areas).

By 3E 427, all of the Telvanni Councilors on Vvardenfell lived in great towers which required levitation to ascend, with one leader in each of their main towns: Sadrith Mora, Tel Aruhn, Tel Vos, Tel Mora, and Tel Branora. None of the Telvanni towns were on the Silt Strider routes; the only transport available to them was by boat, except for Sadrith Mora itself. Being the only Telvanni town with a significant Imperial presence, it could be reached by Guild Guide from another Mages Guild to the nearby Imperial-controlled Wolverine Hall.[55] On the mainland, House Telvanni lands included the city of Firewatch, east of Tel Mora, and the islands to the northeast of the mainland which extend out into the Padomaic Ocean.[56]

Little is known of the fates of the Telvanni lords of mainland Morrowind. However, of those on Vvardenfell, it is known that Archmagister Gothren of Tel Aruhn refused to recognize the Nerevarine as Hortator for House Telvanni - choosing instead a fight to the death, which he lost.[57] Master Aryon of Tel Vos, by contrast, was the Nerevarine's greatest supporter in House Telvanni: and the others—Neloth of Sadrith Mora, Therana of Tel Branora and Dratha of Tel Mora—all were persuaded to back the Hortator.[57] Before or after the fall of Dagoth Ur, Arch-Mage Trebonius Artorius of the Mages Guild demanded that the remaining Telvanni councilors be assassinated, as the price for his retirement and replacement by the Nerevarine as head of the Mages Guild. However, the Nerevarine appears not to have complied with the request, for at least one—Neloth—is known to have survived, although shortly afterwards he left Morrowind and moved to Solstheim.[58][59] The Morag Tong had an outstanding writ on Therana's life, which the Nerevarine may have been the only one brave enough to attempt to carry out—it being generally accepted that she would be little loss to the house, with her advanced age and senility.[60]

Tel Uvirith, constructed in the late Third Era in an attempt to expand into the Molag Amur region of Vvardenfell

Throughout 3E 427, House Telvanni clashed with Houses Redoran and Hlaalu in the wilderness of Vvardenfell, as all three Great Houses attempted to secure land and resources on the frontier island. Conflicts arose over the occupation of old Velothi Towers, such as Shishi,[61] and the founding of settlements such as Rethan Manor by House Hlaalu or Indarys Manor by House Redoran, with the Telvanni attempting to kill the owners of both settlements with disputed success.[62] At the same time, House Telvanni attempted to expand into the Molag Amur region by constructing a stronghold called Tel Uvirith, something that both Houses Redoran and Hlaalu took exception to. Both Houses sent agents to kill the owner or the Tower, with unknown results.[63] The clashes in Shishi ended inconclusively, with the Redoran reporting the extermination of all Telvanni within, and the Telvanni claiming victory against the Redoran siege. The Telvanni hoped that the other House would not attack the location again, reasoning that Vvardenfell had enough land for all three Great Houses active on the island.[61] Further souring relations with House Redoran, Nartise Arobar, daughter of Redoran councilor Miner Arobar, was kidnapped and used as a political hostage by the Telvanni wizard, Neloth.[64] Delyna Mandas, daughter of Redoran noble Arethan Mandas, was held captive in Tel Fyr, causing Arethan Mandas to go mad and begin demanding tribute from passing travelers much as any common bandit.[65]

Despite the conflicts with Hlaalu and Redoran, House Telvanni still managed to make agreements with the Hlaalu and convince the councilors of House Redoran to end the monopoly of the Mages Guild, as one interpretation of the Armistice only allowed the Guild to offer spells and train non-members. With the support of three Redoran councilors, the Telvanni acquired enough support in the Grand Council to remove the monopoly.[66] House Telvanni was also able to defend its own lands several times, as they managed to heal the blighted kwama queen of the Mudun-Mul egg mine located near Tel Vos and defended one of their members against a Hlaalu attack in the Velothi tower of Odirniran.[67][68] Rebellious conflicts also happened, with one slave rebellion near the Telvanni tower of Tel Branora being stopped, although the slaves might have escaped.[69]

Aryon himself was scheming at the time to fill the vacancy created by Gothren's death (and was backed by Baladas Demnevanni of Gnisis, whom he had persuaded to join the Council), and planned to introduce many reforms to Telvanni ethics and practices: although he would not stand against the Nerevarine if the latter were interested in the job—however the Nerevarine left Morrowind not long afterwards and Baladas himself might have been killed by the hero.[70][71] The subsequent documented existence of a Telvanni ship named The Pride of Tel Vos indicates that Tel Vos, Aryon's tower and town—originally a comparatively small and unimportant settlement—had risen to become a place to be proud of: and therefore that Aryon must have been held in considerable respect by the Telvanni, as Tel Vos was nothing without him.[72]

During the Oblivion Crisis in 3E 433, the Telvanni did their best to close the Oblivion Gates on Vvardenfell, but it was to no avail and the Daedra swarmed the land. The Dunmer would instead by saved by the recently revived army of Great House Redoran.[73][74] During the same year, a Telvanni Arch-Mage Frathen Drothan turned rogue and gathered a band of mercenaries called the Drothmeri army in an attempt to topple Imperial rule. He led an expedition to Sundercliff Watch in the Valus Mountains of Cyrodiil to search for Mehrunes' Razor, but he was slain by the Hero of Kvatch before he could retrieve the artifact.[75]

Fourth EraEdit

Tel Mithryn on Solstheim in 4E 201.

The Telvanni suffered greatly during the Red Year in the early Fourth Era. All of the settlements on Vvardenfell were obliterated, but the Telvanni survived and attempted to rebuild. Morrowind was then invaded by the Argonians of Black Marsh, and in an act of revenge for centuries of slavery, the Argonians focused on wiping out the weakened House Telvanni. Circa 4E 6, the last remaining stronghold of the House was sacked by the Argonian invasion force and Great House Telvanni fell. It is documented that some survivors attempted to flee aboard The Pride of Tel Vos, a ship which was later found wrecked along the coast of Skyrim, east of Winterhold. By this account, a single heir of the house survived: Brandyl Tenvanni, son of Lymdrenn Tenvanni, who was found as an infant by Argonians. He grew up in Black Marsh under the name Brand-Shei.[76] Brelyna Maryon is also a descendant of House Telvanni.[77] As of the Fourth Era, the holdings of House Telvanni are all on Vvardenfell,[7] although it is unknown what or where they are. Despite these setbacks and no longer having holdings on the coastal mainland, House Telvanni remains a ruling Great House of Morrowind.[78]

In 4E 16, the High King of Skyrim ceded control of Solstheim to Morrowind. Ostensibly a sign of compassion for the suffering Dunmer people, the act served a pragmatic political purpose: Skyrim could not deny Dunmer refugees access to Solstheim without sparking an unwanted conflict with Morrowind, which had long maintained a theoretical claim to the island, nor could it stand by and allow the Dunmer to settle its territory without losing face.[79][80] Though the island passed to the control of House Redoran and was ruled from Raven Rock by Councilor Brara Morvayn and later her son, Lleril, Neloth had also traveled there to research the ash deposits from Red Mountain, bringing much of Morrowind's exotic flora and fungi to the now partially ash-damaged island. During his time there, he has been studying Heart Stones, fallout originating from the center of Red Mountain, and has learned how to use magic to weave living things from the ash.[81]

By 4E 201, Neloth had finished growing the settlement of Tel Mithryn on Solstheim. Though the people of Solstheim view him as possibly mad, he was still well respected by the other Telvanni wizards. He often took apprentices, though he used them in painful experiments more often than he actually taught them. Neloth planned on returning to Vvardenfell after finishing research on the Ash Spawn, which started to appear on the island after the Red Year. Tel Mithryn remained cordial with the Redoran rulers of Solstheim, with the local Redoran city of Raven Rock and Tel Mithryn content to ignore each other.[82]


Various helms including Telvanni War Flimsy, Mole Crab and Dust Adept helms

Telvanni wizards cultivate the largest and majestic mushrooms of Morrowind which are located in Zafirbel Bay, these fungi take a thousand years to grow and have special ecology of their own.[4] Some Telvanni mages, called Mycoturges, are so in-tune with fungality that they can grow giant mushrooms into any shape they desire, including towers and animals.[6][UOL 4]

The Telvanni are said to have adapted the Dwemer style of the Four Tests convention as an aesthetic element in their defenses and the approach to their towers. Those tests include the analyzation of patterns, a need to proceed systematically if no pattern is found by ordering actions to be done, requiring the observer to examine obstacles to see if a path around the difficulty is needed, and confronting the obstacle directly if no path is found.[83] Those Telvanni towers were notable enough to be mentioned among other wonders in a recommendation of travel to Vvardenfell.[84]

Magister Therana, an example of a powerful Telvanni mage.

At the time of the Ebonheart Pact, thieves and outlaws were said to think House Telvanni was useful as they did not care about it and only cared about their sanctuary on the Telvanni Coast. The formation of the Pact also meant that the troopers they had from other houses were fired. At the time, they were also described as being friend with neither the Argonians nor the Nords, both races being members of the Pact.[4]

The Telvanni mage-lords are far too busy and important to attend council meetings, so they have representatives called 'Mouths' who attend to council business for them. Mouths are proteges of their wizards, and expected to step into their shoes when their masters die. Mouths have complete authority to speak for their lords, but they often defer the tough decisions to their masters.[85] They train apprentices who can take over for them, though some are subjected to minor experiments more often than being taught lessons.[86]

They often employ the use of mercenaries to make sure they are left alone, and prefer to hire Bosmer and Breton mercenaries.[87] The tanto is a stylish dagger variant of Akaviri design. For obscure reasons, the Telvanni prefer them to standard daggers as a matrix for their enchantments, and Telvanni mercenaries are often equipped with enchanted tantos by their mage-lord patrons.[88]

A hope of the Tribunal Temple in the Second Era, or at least one of their canons, was that House Telvanni would be wise, forbearing and that they would share their insights and enchantments, remembering that although they were not part of the Ebonheart Pact, they were still part of the Dunmer people. The sermon where this hope was published was in response to the growing concern over the trembling of Baar Dau, the appearance of unknown daedra in the land, and the rise of a false incarnate of the Nerevarine.[89]

They are scornful of discipline, doctrine, and obedience.[3] Telvanni did not shy away from dark powers, and one of their members even reported that he was able to sense the energies of the Icereach Coven and the Gray Host during a visit to Skyrim when those factions became more active there. This Telvanni Mouth also wrote that others had studied such kinds of powers but did not think that anyone had been so close to it as he was.[90]

Their slaves were often used for experimentation and without any choice on the matter, with one Telvanni "invitation" to their slaves including the practices that they would have to go through, including a test involving corrosive spores to the skin and possible combustion of the lungs. Rewards included reduced lashings and extra portions of food for their meals.[91] Other poor treatment of slaves included exposing them to the sun for long hours and even preparing chestplates to dry the Argonians and others, but making sure they would not die even if they wished for it.[92]

House Telvanni was among the staunchest defenders of slavery, which they saw as an ancient Dunmer right.[27] However, both Khajiit and Argonians, the two most common slave races, could join House Telvanni and advance to the same level of respect as other races. Many Telvanni towns, notably Sadrith Mora and Tel Aruhn, housed slave markets. Telvanni holdings were also worked by slaves, whereas the other Great Houses preferred to use generic workers. Unsurprisingly, Telvanni were strong enemies of abolitionists.[55] Fear or worry of Telvanni slavery in the Second Era reached as far as Summerset, with their mages being known for buying people.[93]

An odd pattern among a number of sorcerer-lords was their tendency to be eccentric.[85] Divayth Fyr was known to clone "daughter-wives", and Neloth once had a tendency to frequently kidnap women, only stopping when he one day grew tired of it.[94]:585 It is sometimes joked that even lycanthropy is more rare in Morrowind than a sexually normal Telvanni mage.[UOL 5]

Telvanni art can be three-dimensional via the creation of magical paintings.[95] Another curious item that they often use are the elegant pristine netch-hide handkerchiefs, which are used by the upper echelon of the House.[96]

Telvanni wizards prize red star shells, which are exceedingly rare. Slaves are trained to comb the shallows for them, and it is considered a marvel to be able to find three of these shells in a month. Red star shells are considerably valuable due to their rarity.[97] Nix-hounds can be trained to find these shells quite effectively.[98][99]


Examples of Telvanni arms and armor during the Second Era

The look of the weapons and armor of House Telvanni in the Second Era was meant to be distinctive and awe-inspiring. One of their sayings, “The powerful define the standards of virtue”, was used to describe their style active in 2E 582.[100]


For belts, their war-girdles were thick and strong, using flexing and overlapping plates to support the front and the rear, protecting abdomen and a small part of the back, being shaped like woody bodies of bracket fungi, displaying radiant patterns of spore gills. For the lower body, they wore kilts of mail inspired by the robes of their Wizard Lords.

Their boots were flexible and thick due to the rugged terrain of their lands, with sabatons being used for heavier armor which used overlapping metal plates to protect the instep and had their forward end pointing upward and this pointing was meant to echo the style of the pauldrons and evoke the idea of their master wizards. Those upward-pointed pauldrons, specially on the heavier armors, helped to show the distinctive silhouette of a Telvanni armor, with their troopers being broad-shouldered.

On the chest, their armor was layered with flexible leather and plates of chitin, ferrofungus or metal with shapes inspired by shelf fungi or toadstool caps, scored by spore gill lines with lacquer overpainting being optional. This was complimented by their gauntlets which displayed the same contrasting nature as the rest of the garments, being made out of guar hide for dexterity while the back of the hand was defended with plates with the same style of shelf fungus.

Concept art of Telvanni Wizards in ostentatious robes

Helmets were either hoods of mail with rigid faceplates for lighter armor or “mushroom-mask” full helms with toadstool silhouettes for heavier helms which caused their heavy troopers to inspire awe on observers.

The rigid and light shields of the House were heart-shaped and also made out of plates of chitin or ferrofungus, with a brazen central boss displaying the House’s symbol. Edges of the shield were reinforced with steel for extra protection.[100]


Tantos, favored by the Telvanni and provided to their mercenaries

House Telvanni archers and thralls used simple recurved bows made out of protective metal in mushroom-cap shapes with quivers decorated to match. Meanwhile, their daggers were long and curved with an end to made them distinctively Telvanni with swirling patterns on their metal between the hilt and the blade resembling a spell and the House symbol.

Their axes resembled sharp-edged shelf or bracket fungi, being made of forge-hardened ferrofungus if metallic ore was unavailable and were no bigger than they needed to be as Telvanni warriors should use them with precision and finesse to instill awe with use and not appearance. Another option included mushroom-cap maces shaped like the fungal scepters of the Telvanni Councilors, although they were larger with a heavy end strong enough to crack skulls.

Swords were long with curved edges, with the end being backed by a hook or barb useful for dismounting riders or toppling heavy knights, with traditional Telvanni swordplay favoring cut over thrust so the point was not often used. Similarly to their daggers, swirling spell patterns were also included to the hilt and the blade of the swords.

Magical users could count on their staves which had the House symbol wrought in gilded silver and made sure that even when the mages were not using uniforms, they would still be recognized and there would be no need to guess their house. [100]


The ruling body of Telvanni settlements in Vvardenfell is called the Telvanni Council.[85] The High Telvanni wizards call themselves the Parliament of Bugs, who preside over the entire house.[UOL 6]

  • Archmagister, is the head and leader of House Telvanni.[16]
  • Magister, is a title that announces that the wielder of it deserves the title of Archmagister more than the current one.[16]
  • Master, A member of the ruling Telvanni Council, traditionally those that reach the rank may never move further to Magister or Archmagister, although this rule was ignored in 3E 427. They and the Archmagister are also responsible for choosing a Hortator.[57][16][101]
  • Wizard[102]
  • Spellwright[102]
  • Mouth, is the rank of representative of the Masters and Magisters of the Telvanni Council who handle business outside the towers as the Masters usually prefer to be left alone although the wishes of Master and Mouth are not always the same.[85][103] Despite representing the Council, they do not have the authority to select a Hortator.[101]
  • Lawman[102]
  • Oathman, members of this rank and up are able to buy slaves as of 2E 582.[103][104]
  • Retainer, is a low-ranking position, retainers are said to be able to make gold easier if compared to their lower ranking counterparts.[103]
  • Hireling, is the lowest rank of the House, they are constantly circled as any sign of weakness allows the Magisters to eliminate them. Hirelings are able to earn a wage and study in peace and refuse tasks if they so choose.[103]

To join House Telvanni and become a Hireling, one can either advance from slave to hireling by being sponsored by a high-ranking individual or, if they are free, by speaking with a Mouth to be accepted into the House.[49][55] Members of other Great Houses cannot join House Telvanni.[105]



  • One of the stories of Almalexia mentions a Telvanni who claimed that he was a master of all alchemy and potions and could cure all diseases, but he was rebuked by Lord Vivec himself who claimed that he was sick with foolishness and arrogance.[106]
  • The Telvanni have their own vessels for seafaring, during the Second Era, they used to travel to the Nordic city of Windhelm.[107]
  • One Telvanni apprentice was rumored to have been able to transform a guar into a pure metallic statue, this theory was created as a way to explain the realism contained in a statue recovered in the Second Era.[108]
  • In Loranna's RP, an individual known as Kena Telvanni Gilroam was said by some to be the most powerful sorcerer in all of House Telvanni. By the late Third Era he was over 4,000 years old, and was said to have been a sovereign in Telvanni-controlled territory for 3,000 of those.[UOL 7]

See AlsoEdit



  1. ^ Dialogue in Morrowind during the Hortator and Nerevarine quest, after receiving Wraithguard from him and inquiring about "people of Morrowind".
  2. ^ a b c Pocket Guide to the Empire, 1st Edition: MorrowindImperial Geographical Society, 2E 864
  3. ^ a b c Great Houses dialogue topic in Morrowind
  4. ^ a b c d The Great Houses and Their UsesTel Verano
  5. ^ 2920, The Last Year of the First EraCarlovac Townway
  6. ^ a b Loremaster's Archive - House TelvanniDivayth Fyr
  7. ^ a b Neloth's dialogue in Dragonborn
  8. ^ a b c d House Telvanni dialogue topic in Morrowind
  9. ^ a b Great Houses of Morrowind
  10. ^ a b Morrowind Lore dialogue topic in Morrowind
  11. ^ "join House Telvanni" dialogue option offered by Mouths in Morrowind
  12. ^ Tilenra Sildreth's's dialogue in ESO
  13. ^ Ken Rolston's Posts
  14. ^ Skeleton Man's Interview with Denizens of Tamriel
  15. ^ a b On MorrowindErramanwe of Sunhold
  16. ^ a b c d Aryon's dialogue in Morrowind
  17. ^ House Telvanni's Friends and Foes in Morrowind
  18. ^ House Telvanni's reaction to vampires in Morrowind
  19. ^ a b Mottos of the Dunmeri Great HousesVilyn Girith
  20. ^ The 36 Lessons of VivecVivec
  21. ^ a b Librarian Bradyn's dialogue in ESO
  22. ^ Ancestral Tomb markers in ESO: Morrowind
  23. ^ Events of The Ancestral Tombs and The Lost Library in ESO:Morrowind
  24. ^ Heimlyn Keep loading screen text in ESO
  25. ^ a b Beron Telvanni's dialogue in ESO
  26. ^ War of the First Council
  27. ^ a b c Brown Book of 3E 426
  28. ^ The Doors of Oblivion, Part 2Seif-ij Hidja
  29. ^ Varieties of Daedra, Part 1Aranea Drethan
  30. ^ The Vvardvark ExperimentMagister Varkenel, Telvanni Mage
  31. ^ Vvardenfell Flora and FaunaTilenra Sildreth, Telvanni Naturalist
  32. ^ Vvardenfell Then and Now on the official ESO website
  33. ^ The Second Akaviri InvasionYngmaer Raven-Quill, Historian Royal of the Bards' College, Solitude
  34. ^ Ask Us Anything: Ebonhart Pact (Part 2)
  35. ^ Ashlander Tribes and CustomsUlran Releth of House Redoran
  36. ^ Telvanni Requirements — Llarel Telvanni
  37. ^ My Dearest LoveNeeti-Ma
  38. ^ Events of ESO: Morrowind
  39. ^ Tyree Marence's dialogue during Repair Koeglin Lighthouse in ESO
  40. ^ Events of Repair Koeglin Lighthouse in ESO
  41. ^ Events of Captive Crewmembers in ESO
  42. ^ Captain Jurard's dialogue during The Curse of Heimlyn Keep in ESO
  43. ^ Events of The Curse of Heimlyn Keep in ESO
  44. ^ Events of What Was Done Must Be Undone in ESO
  45. ^ Llasi Omoren's dialogue during Warship Designs in ESO
  46. ^ Events of Warship Designs in ESO
  47. ^ Magister Therana's dialogue during A Hireling of House Telvanni in ESO: Morrowind
  48. ^ Magister's WritMagister Therana
  49. ^ a b Events of A Hireling of House Telvanni in ESO: Morrowind
  50. ^ Events of Reclaiming Vos in ESO
  51. ^ Mistress Dratha's JournalMistress Dratha, Telvanni Mage
  52. ^ Events of At Any Cost in ESO
  53. ^ Mistress Dratha's dialogue in ESO
  54. ^ Dratha's dialogue in Morrowind
  55. ^ a b c d Events of Morrowind
  56. ^ Concept map of Morrowind, released during the Tenth Anniversary of TES
  57. ^ a b c Events of Telvanni Hortator in Morrowind
  58. ^ Events of Kill the Telvanni Councilors in Morrowind
  59. ^ Events of Dragonborn.
  60. ^ Events of Writ for Mistress Therana in Morrowind
  61. ^ a b Events of Shishi Report and Shishi in Morrowind
  62. ^ Events of Kill Raynasa Rethan and Kill Banden Indarys in Morrowind
  63. ^ Events of Slay Reynel Uvirith and Kill Reynel Uvirith in Morrowind
  64. ^ Events of Miner Arobar's Support in Morrowind
  65. ^ Events of The Mad Lord of Milk in Morrowind
  66. ^ Events of Mages Guild Monopoly in Morrowind
  67. ^ Events of Odirniran in Morrowind
  68. ^ Events of Mudan-Mul Egg Mine in Morrowind
  69. ^ Events of Slave Rebellion in Morrowind
  70. ^ Events of Baladas Demnevanni in Morrowind
  71. ^ Events of the Writ for Baladas Demnevanni in Morrowind
  72. ^ Appearance of the Wreck of The Pride of Tel Vos in Skyrim
  73. ^ Adril Arano's dialogue in Dragonborn
  74. ^ Rumor in Oblivion: "I have heard things are bad in Vvardenfell. The Telvanni do their best to close the gates, but it is to no avail."
  75. ^ Events of Oblivion
  76. ^ Lymdrenn Tenvanni's JournalLymdrenn Tenvanni
  77. ^ Brelyna Maryon's dialogue in Skyrim
  78. ^ Lleril Morvayn's dialogue in Dragonborn
  79. ^ Loading Screen captions from Dragonborn
  80. ^ Lord of SoulsGreg Keyes
  81. ^ Garyn Ienth's dialogue in Dragonborn
  82. ^ Events of Dragonborn
  83. ^ Guylaine's Dwemer ArchitectureGuylaine Marilie
  84. ^ Good Travels!
  85. ^ a b c d Various Telvanni dialogue topics in Morrowind
  86. ^ Talvas Fathryon's dialogue in Dragonborn
  87. ^ Races dialogue topic in Morrowind
  88. ^ Tanto dialogue topic in Morrowind
  89. ^ Faith in the Shadow of Red MountainCanon Llevule
  90. ^ Journal of a Telvanni EmissaryElvali Trandel, Mouth of House Telvanni, Emissary to Skyrim
  91. ^ An "Invitation" to Discovery — Birer Salen, Oathman of the Telvanni
  92. ^ Chestplate of DesiccationWuja-Nakal
  93. ^ Journal of Justiciar AvanaireAvanaire
  94. ^ The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Legendary Prima Official Game Guide
  95. ^ Telvanni Wizard-Painting of Heimlyn Keep item description in ESO
  96. ^ Pristine Netch-Hide Handkerchiefs item description in ESO
  97. ^ Faras Givyn's dialogue during Bound by Love in ESO: Morrowind
  98. ^ Llonas Givyn's dialogue in ESO: Morrowind
  99. ^ Events of Bound by Love in ESO: Morrowind
  100. ^ a b c Crafting Motif 50: Telvanni StyleIvela Telvanni, Vivec City
  101. ^ a b Enar Releth's dialogue in Morrowind
  102. ^ a b c House Telvanni's faction ranks in Morrowind
  103. ^ a b c d Sun-in-Shadow's dialogue in ESO
  104. ^ Eoki's dialogue in ESO
  105. ^ Generic Dialogue regarding Choosing a Great House in Morrowind
  106. ^ The Homilies of Blessed AlmalexiaAlmalexia
  107. ^ Watchtower LedgerSergeant Duren
  108. ^ The Dutiful Guar antiquity codex entries in ESO: Greymoor

Note: The following references are considered to be unofficial sources. They are included to round off this article and may not be authoritative or conclusive.