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Lore:Baloth Bloodtusk

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This article is about the Orc. For the statue plaque, see Baloth Bloodtusk (book).

Baloth Bloodtusk
ON-npc-Baloth Bloodtusk.jpg
Baloth Bloodtusk
Race Orc Gender Male
Born 1st Era
Died 1E 970
Old Orsinium
Resided in Wrothgar
Appears in ESO

Baloth Bloodtusk was an Orc hero and leader of the Savage Sons mercenaries. He was also known as the Wild Boar because no king could ever tame him, and he fought for his own reasons.[1] He is remembered as the finest warrior in Wrothgar, and some went as far to claim he was an avatar of Malacath himself. Various legends speak of him wrestling giants, slaying dragons or riding a giant bear, but some scholars dismiss these as mere stories.[2]

Early LifeEdit

Little is known about his early life, but according to Orcish legend he was one of the founders of Morkuldin, the ancestral stronghold of Morkul Clan. Old Orcish poems claim it was founded by a heroic trio of Baloth Bloodtusk, Mazghar Many-Tongues and Lakora of the Hunt, who "rebuffed winter's grasp" and "found haven beneath."[3] Large statues were erected of the three heroes deep in Morkuldin, which also served as a locking mechanism for Morkuldin's great blood-forge.[4][5][6]

Siege of OrsiniumEdit

Baloth played a crucial role during the Siege of Orsinium in 1E 950. Initially, King Golkarr appealed to Baloth to join him by preaching the virtues of Orc unity. Baloth rejected his offer, refusing to bend the knee and believing the conflict to be a lost cause that Golkarr himself had done much to provoke.[7] On the Breton side, King Joile of Daggerfall plotted with his Reachman general, Mercedene, to kill Baloth for his own ends and betray Gaiden Shinji and his Redguard allies before invading Hammerfell.[8]

In an attempt to draw Baloth into the war, King Joile sent Baloth a letter in which he lied that Baloth's brother Rokaug had been killed in the fighting and placed the blame on King Golkarr, and then proposed that Baloth join him instead.[9] Joile's appeal to vengeance failed and the veiled threat angered Baloth sufficiently that he decided to join Golkarr after all.[7] Baloth proved his might when he reinforced Orsinium, resulting in considerable Breton casualties against his Savage Sons. It said the Orcs came to love Baloth more than their own king.[10]

In response, Joile and Mercedene manipulated Baloth and Shinji into having a duel over Orsinium's fate, but in truth was a trap where Joile could effectively remove the most powerful warriors of both Orsinium and the Order of Diagna.[1][8] King Joile kept the true reasons for the duel a secret and even his loyal subject, Lord Trystan, was unaware of his scheme. Indeed, Lord Trystan believed in good faith that the duel could quickly end the siege before General Mercedene turned it into a bloodbath.[10]

Baloth agreed to the duel and they fought a long battle in the halls of Orsinium, described as "a willow and a graht-oak, dancing in the wind", with neither gaining the upper hand. Both warriors came to respect each other's skills. During the duel, Mercedene ordered Joile's archers to kill both combatants.[11] This supposedly coincided with the fall of Orsinium's second Obdurate Gate, Hammer.[12] Lord Trystan discovered Joile's scheme and declared the Knights of the Dragon would have no part in his treachery. He vowed to give Baloth and Shinji a honorable burial and would remembered this event as the day "honor came to rest". Both warriors were buried in Honor's Rest in Wrothgar.[10]


History forgot Baloth's duel and Joile's treachery relatively quickly and the location of his tomb was lost to time. By the mid-Second Era, Orcs came to mistakenly believe that Gaiden Shinji was the one who betrayed Baloth. According to Orcish histories, the Order of Diagna slipped into the city, opened the city doors and slaughtered the people during their rigged duel. Baloth's fury at the "honor" of men drove Shinji to defeat, but rather than lose a duel, Shinji ordered ten thousand archers to kill them both. Gaiden Shinji became vilified as the one responsible for Orsinium's destruction, even among the few surviving Orcs from the siege.[2][13] This story was told in every Orc stronghold and no matter the variation, Baloth Bloodtusk always ends up betrayed in his duel with Gaiden Shinji.[2]

In 2E 582, Baloth's tomb was discovered by an archeological expedition. The lead historians could not determine if the tomb belonged to Baloth or Shinji as it was magically sealed and impenetrable. The Vestige aided the lead historians by venturing into the nearby catacombs to find a way in. Once they gained entry into the tomb, they inexplicabaly discovered Redguard and Orc stonework and statuary throughout. Eventually they experienced visions revealing the truth behind Baloth's duel and Joile's betrayal, proving the written histories of Baloth's betrayal as false.[11][14]



  • Baloth's legendary torc supposedly saved him from a Redguard's attack when it deflected a blade thrust. The chain snapped and the torc was lost to history. It was recovered in 2E 582 and put on display in the House of Orsimer Glories.
  • Pariah's Pinnacle was originally Baloth's mountaintop retreat.
  • Golkarr is reported as having died at Joile and Gaiden Shinji's hand at the end of the Siege, when Smelter Gate fell in 1E 980.[12] Although unwilling to join Golkarr's cause, Baloth may have outlived the king he despised but eventually marched to support, which puts his death as taking place before Baloth's own, though this is more likely an error as Joile was killed by Makela Leki in 1E 973 before the Siege ended.

See AlsoEdit