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Type Settlement
Continent Tamriel
Province Skyrim
Hold The Reach
Appears in Arena, Skyrim
Markarth circa 4E 201
The symbol of Markarth

Markarth, also called Markarth Side,[1] is a city in western Skyrim and the capital of the hold known as the Reach.[2] It is noted for its Dwemer architecture and the extensive ruins of a Dwemer city, Nchuand-Zel, beneath Understone Keep. The city is often noted for the Imperial College of the Voice founded by Tiber Septim, though no trace of this college can be found by the Fourth Era.[3][4]


Control of Markarth and the Reach has changed many times. Markarth was inhabited by the Dwemer until their disappearance in 1E 700. The natives of the Reach, a people of mixed Breton descent, assumed control of the city and the surrounding lands. After the collapse of the Second Empire, Markarth, along with the whole Reach, was ruled by the Reachmen under the Despot of Markarth. The Reachmen conspired with Mannimarco and the Tharns to further Molag Bal's Planemeld, and Nchuand-Zel was occupied by Daedra. Vanus Galerion stormed this complex some time before 2E 581 while hunting Mannimarco.[5]

During the time of Tiber Septim, the Nords came to power and subjugated the natives. During the Imperial Simulacrum in the late Third Era, the village of Markarth Side was an active village, being under the rule of Lady Hellne. It had a rivalry with Amber Guard and Dunstad Grove.[1] It was neighbored by several settlements, including Dragon Bridge in the north, and Snowhawk in the south.[6] In 4E 174, while the Empire was distracted by the Great War with the Aldmeri Dominion, the natives seized the Reach with little resistance and broke away from Skyrim to form a short-lived independent kingdom with Markarth as its capital.[7] Ulfric Stormcloak gathered a militia and toppled the natives in 4E 176, reestablishing Nordic dominance over the Reach.[7] Desperate and alienated in their own lands, the natives began to call themselves the Forsworn and turned to their ancient traditions and rituals for help to rebel against the Nords. The Forsworn continue to wage a guerrilla war in the Reach as of 4E 201.[4]

See Also[edit]

  • For game-specific information, see the Arena and Skyrim articles.


  1. ^ a b Markarth Side location and rumors in Arena
  2. ^ The City of StoneAmanda Alleia
  3. ^ Pocket Guide to the Empire, 1st Edition: SkyrimImperial Geographical Society, 2E 864
  4. ^ a b Events of Skyrim
  5. ^ The Improved Emperor's Guide to Tamriel: Northern Bangkorai and the MountainsFlaccus Terentius, 2E 581
  6. ^ Map of Skyrim — The Elder Scrolls: Arena
  7. ^ a b The Bear of MarkarthArrianus Arius, Imperial Scholar