The Ayleid Potentate of Vilverin or in the Ayleid language An Aba Mala Aransel Av Sel Sacremathi was a kingdom formed in 1E 485 by the Ayleid Remnants. The Kingdom was based on the island of Sel Sacremathi, or Vilverin. The kingdom was responsible for the Great Ayleid War that spilt the blood of many Ayleids for several decades. Although the Ayleid kings were submerged in civil war, the Potentate with the help of Peryite, Jyggalag and Boethiah managed to create a unified kingdom on the islands of Rumare and conquered the other Ayleid kings. The Potentate managed to keep control of its territory until the reign of Tiber Septim. The Potentate was attacked and its citizens were forced to leave the main island for Vilverin. Then the Potentate was forced to confine itself on the tiny island of Vilverin so that it would remain independent from the Second Empire. After the treaty, Vilverin was demolished by the Imperials, and its citizens were forced to abandon their homes or face death. Many Ayleids disappeared into Valenwood and the Cyrodiil-Elsweyr border. Their minority gradually shrunk. Their tracks disappear after the Battle of Sancre Tor. The Aldmeri Dominion and the Direnni clan are thought to have originated by them.
Rise and Growth (? - 1E 342)
History is vague when it comes to the origins of the Potentate. Historians claimed that the increasing Ayleid revanchism led to the rise of rebels. However the Potentate is generally thought to have been formed, after the fall of the White Gold Tower. The Potentate is thought to be the brainchild of the Ayleid general Orgecain an officer of the old Ayleid Empire and a visionary about a new Ayleid Kingdom. The formation of the Potentate occurred differently than that of every other kingdom on Tamriel. Unlike the other Ayleid kingdoms, the Potentate was forged when Urcahil, the High General of the Ayleid Kingdom of White Gold Tower, pledged fealty to the Aran of Vilverin, Auri-Nel.
Then Auri-Nel defected from the old Ayleid Empire as a way to protest about the retreat into Valenwood. Urcahil did the same. The allegiance that was formed brought great power to the Potentate. The rise of the greatest Ayleid kingdom every to exist was about to begin. Auri-Nel was convinced that this allegiance gave the Potentate a great advantage. The First Empire was weakened by internal conflicts. The successor of Alessia Caius Richton was facing a great disadvantage. The Ayleid Empire's collapse led to the faction's fragmentation into three kingdom the Potentate of Vilderin, The Aranate of Miscarcard and the Kingdom of Nenalata.
This gave the newly crowned Potente Auri-Nel the chance to subdue his eternal enemy. In order to build his new empire, Auri-Nel began to construct Vilverin's port. Its construction took two months. After is completion, Auri-Nel ordered the mass construction of Duathas, ships the comprised the main Ayleid fleet. The Potentate was nearly invincible. Its military might was unmatched by the other kingdoms of Tamriel in both navy and army. Their army was made by the elite Baunedoon elite Ayleid warriors, raised in combat and clad in Elven Armor. The Ayleids then began a military campaign against the Imperials.
However two years later Potente Auri-Nel died. He was succeeded by Lord Arpenor. Arpenor managed to maintain his precursor's strength. In almost three years Vilverin conquered Silvarn, an Ayleid town located, where in the Third Era, the Wellspring Cave was located. From there the Ayleids targeted the two other Ayleid cities that were located nearby: Asthorn (the Waterfront) and Culas (the Arcane Tower). Their conquests brought them outside their ancient capital. The wooden walls of Alessianum (the Imperial City). Three years later having conquered Sercen too, they began the siege of Alessianum.
In the years that came through a strong expansionist policy, the Ayleids constantly raided the Imperial beaches. The Imperial Navy wasn't yet organized and was unable to block or defend its ports. Riverside treks were common at this time, according to the attack-and-retreat strategy the Ayleid Generals used though the units were usually mercenaries or the Valascari or else the foreigners, a military unit formed only by non-Ayleids. The Arans however remained cautious about this unit. They later disbanded it. The purity of the Ayleid Army was thought to add to the chances of victory.
Expansion and apogee (1E 343 - 1E 1451)
The control of the Rumare sea was a great advantage, since there weren't yet any bridges to allow access to Alessianum. So reinforcements were scarce. The economy that the Ayleids professed was based on the vast fertile lands off the coasts of Rumare and the use of trade through the Niben Bay with the Khajiit and the Argonians. Though usually engaged in trifles with the Nenalata faction, they still engaged in trade. As long as they weren't threatened they provided a great resource of food and wealth to the Potentate.Everything was going according to plan. The beginning of the siege of Alessianum had begun. The new Potente Urcahil II was convinced that this was his chance. However a civil war with the Ayleid faction of Miscarcand postponed the siege to about five years. Also while besieging Alessianum, the Ayleids diverted their attention in order to conquer the remainder of the Rumare Islands which were also under the control of the First Empire. Oral tradition claims that the siege of Alessianum took about three years and ended in a brutal battle where, King Caius Richton was killed and the Empire was left unruled. After the conquest of Alessianum, the Potentate proceeded to conquer the Ayleid city-states along the banks of the Rumare.
Their rivals in the other hand ignored the threat they posed considering them a closed business. This was not the case. Soon the other Ayleids realized that their power was vastly less significant than the Potentate's and many of them tried to combat it. This resulted in a bloody civil war the War of Corbolo where the Ayleid Potentate and the Kingdom of Nenalata reached an ultimatum, choosing the Corbolo river as the buffer zone. The Aranate of Miscarcand had already submitted to the kingdoms of Colovia. Later, the Aran of Vilverin after he gained the Crowns of Nenalata and Lindai named himself the title of Potente, which meant “emperor” in the Ayleidic language. Having gained what he needed, Potente Urahil II focused his attention on the city of Alessianum. He intended to reforge the old Ayleid Empire. On the other side of the sea, however, the Human Emperors in Colovia were preparing for a preemptive attack on Wayel, later known as Weye a Ayleid base of operations which was used to raid the nearby roads.
The civil war gave them the right distraction. There wasn't enough manpower in Wayel. It was an easy target for the Emperors to claim. This loss haunted the latter Potente Verannos and his successor Calenhain. Haromir Orgehail accussed the leadership of misruling the Potentate. Still they weren't able to penetrate the powerful Rumarian Ayleid perimeter set up by both Army and Navy. So in 1230 they agreed in a ceasefire that would officialy end the Ayleidic Wars. It would take about two hundred years for the Human Empire to grow and slowly encircle all of the Potentate. Since they couldn't engage the Potentate head to head they were considering of cutting any trade links the Potentate had with other nations. The Niben Sea was their only way out.
Stagnation (1E 452 - 1E 2920)
The peace lasted forever. Soon however the Ayleids ignorant of the cunning diplomatic game, the First Empire was playing, became a toy of the Empire. The Imperials didn't actually had to engage in warfare with them. The Ayleids grew complacent and the Ayleid ruling family lost the Crown to the Akaviri Kings. Soon a war erupted, and after a long period of fighting, the Akaviri Coalition defeated the Potentate. The Potentate had to accept several particularly harsh demands in order to remain independent. However, the Akaviri kings did not stay in power for long. Under the rule of the Akaviri kings the Potentate's land slowly shrunk.
Eventually they were confined to the main island, and the Akaviri kings, desperate to hold on to power, invaded the territories they had lost. Sadly, they did not succeed. Tiber Septim, a general of King Cuhlecain, came up with a brilliant strategy, and after a hard fought battle, captured Alessianum. This crushing defeat proved that the Potentate was only a shadow of what it had once been. Then, civil war erupted again, and the original Ayleid ruling family came into power again. However, despite their zeal, they could not fight the Imperials effectively, and they soon lost their territory on the main island and they were forced to flee to the island of Vilverin. The beginning of the end of the Potentate had begun. Soon after their allies deserted them, famine struck at the stomachs of the Ayleids, the Imperial Legions besieged them on Vilverin and finally the Daedric Princes abandoned them, and the Great Ayleid Massacre began.
During the waning uears Third Era, the Ayleids created a desperate plan. They quickly mobilized an army, and attempted to overthrow their Imperial masters. However, the rebellion was defeated and the Imperial Legions assaulted Vilverin. Eventually, Vilverin fell, and the Imperial Legions, exuberant over their victory plundered, looted, burned, raped, and murdered the inhabitants of Vilverin. The horrifying massacre ended the age of the Potentate, and the Ayleid cause was lost.
The FutureThe coming of the Fourth Age marked the disappearance of the Ayleid race. The only thing that remained was their once glorious cities, now ruins and monuments to their inglorious defeat. However, the Ayleids did not disappear entirely. Many historians discovered that the Ayleids had migrated to secret cities under the Brena and Strid Rivers though there wasn't anything to prove this. The Ayleid descendants had officialy left the continent. Many of them were located in Valenwood. Consanguitity which was a common theme during the declining state of the Potentate, also decreased the Ayleids chances to reproduce. These groups disappeared as a minority much before the start of the Third Era. The Septim Empire had lost any track of them and their advanced technology and warfare had disappeared wit them. Also many historians claimed that the Direnni Clan in High Rock and the Aldmeri Dominion were their descendants. Still however the defeat of the Direnni Clan's defeat virtually ends the Ayleid period. They only things that the Ayleids of Vilverin left behind are the ruins of Vilverin, the only ruins that managed to survive the latter Ayleid pogroms.
Because it was formed by the alliance between Urcahil and Auri-Nel, the Ayleid Potentate of Vilverin was the most modern and recent Ayleid kingdom to have emerged. Yet even more recently, the Potentate has had a resurgence of power in its secret cities and has appeared better organized than its predecessors had. The Ayleids had learnt their lessons from the First Ayleidic War. In order to bring a working government to govern to the Potentate, the Potentes expanded the governmental hierarchy. The most notable positions were:
- Potente - The head of the Ayleid state and the commander of the military, the Potente possessed great power in his hands. His decisions were orders from the gods and all under his dominion were to serve him. The Aran of Vilverin preceded the position of Potente until the waning years of the First Era, when the Arans decided to make their title more regal, and to have a title of more significance. The title that replaced Aran was Potente, a word coming from the Ayleidic language. Its meaning was Emperor; although, Imperial historians say that the title meant more of a strain of Chosen One rather than Emperor. However, the Ayleids used the title of Potente until the fall of the Potentate. After the downfall of the Potentate, the title was abandoned. It was a hereditary title and the person that achieved it had earnt the highest place in the Ayleid society.
- Haromir - The leader of the Ayleid religion and a master of sorcery, the person that gained the title of Haromier was the most powerful of the Ayleidic magicians, but the most wise as well. Unlike the Potente, who was allowed to be in the presence of females, the title of Haromir was heavily restricted, and the possessor was not allowed in the presence of females. However, if the Haromir already was married, then his wife would earn the title of Sunna, which means blessed one. The title of Haromir was recently created in order to stop the religious wars. The possessor of the title of Haromir was the head of the Ayleidic religion. Unlike the Potente title which was reserved for the ancestors of Auri-Nel and Umaril, the Haromir title was an elective title. The oldest people in life were the most likely candidates as they were the most proficient in sorcery and witchcraft.
The religion of the Potentate was not the same as the other Ayleid kingdoms. The Potentate of Vilverin's civilians believed in apotheosis, which meant that when a hero died he would become a god. The Potentate had abandoned the Daedric religion in its early years. The Potentate's priests were the founders and fanatic followers of a belief called Silentium, or Proto-Necromancy, by the Imperial historians. Proto-Necromancy was known to be much more peaceful than its later version. The followers of that belief were not in fact collecting corpses to reanimate them, but in fact, they used the heart of the dead one. After years of practicing Proto Necromancy, the Potentate managed to create a huge number of undead. The Ayleids however had great respect for the dead and believed that any mutilation of them was blasphemy. The mutilator would be executed and his corpse would be mutilated as well. This belief died with the Potentate, its aftermath left behind only haunted ruins. Many years later, Mannimarco sought to restore proto necromancy. However, he failed, and his attempts corrupted him, and his followers.
The Ayleid society of Vilverin was heavily stratified though the collapse of the First Ayleid Empire marked the abolition of slavery by the Ayleids. The highest caste was only hereditary. The Potentes and the Haromirs were part of it. The Haromirs however retain the ability to elect the successor of the title. It was the only chance for a person of the lower castes to reach the highest. This caste is thought to be the pureblood descendant of the Old Ayleid Empire.