Elder Scrolls Lore » Discussions

The “Thalmor”: Who are they and what do they want?

  • November 12, 2011

    So far in my Skyrim experience, I have come across dialog that I initially thought referred to the “Falmer”, as in the supposedly extinct race of elves known at the “Snow Elves”, but in fact referred to the “Thalmor”.  I noted that one of the prisoners in the opening scenes as well as the the smith in Riverwood both attributed the root cause of the current Skyrim civil war to the Thalmor.  So who are these “Thalmor”?

    I recently came across book authored by an Altmer loyal to the current empire (this is important, since it is not an author of some race that might dislike the Altmer, it is authored by one of their own kind), who details the threat that the Thalmor present to all of Tamriel.  It turns out that some rich merchant took up this Altmer’s cause to get the word out about the Thalmor threat by self-funding the printing of the book.  However, several weeks after the book began circulating through Tamriel the merchant was mysteriously murdered.  The murder implies that the Thalmor not only possess a Tamriel-wide spy-ring, but that they also use assassins.

    According to the author, I get the sense that the Thalmor are some kind of Altmer fundamentalist sect, looking to re-assert Altmer control over Tamriel.  The author claims that the Thalmor overthrew the local government of the Summerset Isles (a political coup of sorts), and then established a racial cleansing program for those not of true Aldmer blood as a method of removing Imperial loyalists; after which the Summerset Isles under Thalmor leadership promptly declared their succession from the Empire.  Furthermore, the author accuses the Thalmor of inciting the Agronians to invade southern Morrowind after the Red Mountain explosion that laid waste to most of Morrowind; as well as being responsible for convincing the Bosmer of Valenwood to begin their own campaign of succession from the Empire.  In fact, the author claims that it was the Thalmor who were instrumental in the Bosmer success, not only by providing Altmer forces from the Summerset Isle, but by providing critical military intelligence that allowed the significantly smaller Bosmer/Altmer force to defeat the larger, better armed Imperial forces.

    So who are these Thalmor?  What are their goals toward Tamriel?  They certainly appear interested in much more than simply the “liberation” of the Summerset Isles from Imperial rule.

    Please post as you discover more lore on this subject.

  • November 12, 2011

    As a first comment, the above revelations this early in the game is certainly skewing my perception of the civil war, especially if it turns out that the Stormcloaks are in fact the unwitting pawns of some Thalmor scheme.  Should that prove the case, well... don't want to join the Stormcloaks to fulfill Thalmor objectives, and don't want to join the Imperials to help them kill fellow Nords (I'm playing a Nord).  

    Ah... the intrigue!  What to do, what to do...

  • Leader
    November 12, 2011
  • November 12, 2011

    Thanks for the link... I should know better than to not do a little research before posting -- although, the UESP info is very minimal.  However, I am now starting to run across information alluding that the Thalmor are those that rule over the Aldmeri Dominion, as if the two are distinct and separate, with one (the Aldmeri Dominion) being subservient to the other (the Thalmor).  In fact, some pro-Stormcloak sources are claiming that King Torygg's death was a result of his accepting a treaty with the Empire to ban Talos worship, and that this specific treaty is somehow attributed to the Thalmor.

    The plot thickens... 

  • November 12, 2011

    I haven't seen one in game, but I have seen one in those stills that the game shows you during load times.  They are positively terrifying.  But the blurb below said that they live far under the surface in very remote underground locations.  To think they are capable of running something so intelligent amazes me as they look like a mix between elves and trolls.  I too initially thought those around me were saying "Falmer".  I suppose we'll just have to play and find out :P

  • March 17, 2013

    good point but i think that the  altmer didn''t tell the argonians to invade morrowind because the dunmer were a part of the aldmeri dominion. the argonians invaded morrowind to take revenge for slavery.

  • April 3, 2013

    The leader of the Mythic Dawn, Mankar Cameron, was an Altmer... Coincidence?  To support my theory that Mankar was working for the Thalmor, I thought it is a coincidence that Mehrunes Dagon destroyed the White-Gold Tower and according to the Tower Theory, although it is never expressly stated but the destruction of each seems to indicate that the world will come apart and return to its original state of being and as Vix said "This isn't to say that it is death; it could be the elven ideal of returning to Aetherius."

    "If all the towers were undone then that eternal cycle of death would cease and Mundus would vanish back into the primordial state of being devoid of pain and unbound by the laws of physics and reality; time and space would have no meaning, neither would despair or discord. In essence, it could very well be a free ticket to heaven."

    Which gives the Thalmor a motive for destroying the Towers and Mankar was using Dagon to do so.

    Oblivion Main Quest
    Michael Kirkbride

  • Member
    April 3, 2013
    But that is one person's plan... Which was to basically destroy the world... I don't think the thalmor win with that plan... And again, it was only one person's plan... To damn an entire group for the actions of a few is a stupid thing to do.
  • April 3, 2013

    Hmmm... Good point...

  • Member
    April 3, 2013

    From my understanding, the Thalmor want to kill every non-Mer species on Tamriel (and it has to be their definition of Mer, too, meaning the Orsimer are out of luck) because they believe that will allow them to become immortal again, as they were supposed to be once.

    Dagon was a lot less specific, though - he just wanted EVERYTHING on Tamriel laying in pieces at his feet. Daedric Prince of Destruction and all that. Which means Mankar Camoran wasn't a Thalmor. Dagon played no favorites, he'd have killed even the Altmer.