Nedes, also known as Nedic people, were a race of men who existed throughout Cyrodiil, Hammerfell, Skyrim, and Morrowind during the First Era.
The Adabal-a reveals they consisted of several indigenous tribes in Cyrodiil, including the Kothringi, the Al-Gemha, Men-of-Ge, Al-Hared and Men-of-Ket. While Nedes are often considered a single race of man, it has been said that they are more accurately a wide panoply of extremely varied mannish cultures and tribes who eventually would become more united through interactions within Tamriel. The Imperial race can trace their roots to the Nedic people after they bred with the Atmorans.
The most notable of Nedes is St. Alessia, who defeated the Ayleid forces which enslaved her people.
Not much is known about the Nedes as they had all died in the ninth century of the first era. In The Elder Scrolls Online when the Vestige travels back in time they meet multiple Nedic warriors. The Nedes have a similar appearance to modern Imperials and look slightly Nordic. They have skin tone that of Bretons, and have greenish-blue eyes.
Where exactly the Nedes originated from remains a mystery throughout history. The most commonly believed theory is that the Nedes originated from Atmora and migrated to Tamriel in a varying waves that took place during the early-mid Merethic Era. However, according to the famed Imperial scholar, Hasphat Antabolis, the theory that the Nedes came from Atmora has little to no archaeological evidence supporting it. It is speculated that the idea had been implanted in Imperial culture with the coming of the beginnings of the Septim Empire and its Nordic Fatherland principles. The earliest known documented history on the Nedes, within Tamriel, is believed to date back to around ME 1000.
Living in the Deathlands of HammerfellEdit
During their time the Nedes lived in the area that is now called Hammerfell. They received numerous invasions from the Ayleids, Dwemer, and Orcs. Despite the attacks the Nedes survived and prospered within their region. They were skilled in stonework and constructed entire cities made of stone. Some ancient cave paintings found in Craglorn seem to imply there were relations between the Nedes and the Orsimer of the region until war broke out between the two races, with the Orcs seemingly being defeated.
They disappeared from the deathlands after the Yokudans (Ra Gada) came and wiped them out, although their culture had been slowly disappearing for a long time already.
Enslavement Under the AyleidsEdit
In the first years of the First Era, a powerful race of Elves called the Ayleids, or the Heartland High Elves, ruled central Tamriel with an iron hand. The high and haughty Ayleids relied on their patrons, the treacherous Daedra Lords, to provide armies of Daedra with dead spirits; with these fearless magical armies, the Ayleids preyed without mercy upon the young races of men, slaughtering or enslaving them at their whim.
On behalf of the suffering human races, St. Alessia, the first in the line of Cyrodiils, sought the aid of Akatosh, the Dragon God of Time, and the ruler of the noble Aedra. Akatosh, looking with pity upon the plight of men, drew precious blood from his own heart, and blessed St. Alessia with this blood of Dragons, and made a Covenant that so long as Alessia's generations were true to the dragon blood, Akatosh would endeavor to seal tight the Gates of Oblivion, and to deny the armies of Daedra and undead to their enemies, the Daedra-loving Ayleids.
In token of this Covenant, Akatosh gave to Alessia and her descendants the Amulet of Kings and the Eternal Dragonfires of the Imperial City. Thus does Alessia become the first gem in the Cyrodilic Amulet of Kings. The gem is the Red Diamond in the middles of the Amulet. This is the Symbol of the Empire and later taken as the symbol of the Septim line, It is surrounded by eight other gems, one for each of the divines.
So long as the Empire shall maintain its worship of Akatosh and his kin, and so long as Alessia's heirs shall bear the Amulet of Kings, Akatosh and his divine kin maintain a strong barrier between Tamriel and Oblivion, so that mortal man need never again fear the devastating summoned hosts of the Daedra Lords. But if the Empire should slacken in its dedication to the Nine Divines, or if the blood of Alessia's heirs should fail, then shall the barriers between Tamriel and the Daedra realms fall, and Daedra-worshippers might summon lesser Daedra and undead spirits to trouble the races of men.
War with the ChimerEdit
During the early First Era the Nedes were known have had a war with the Chimer after they had recently arrived in Morrowind. After a few years, the Nedes controlled an area known as the Stonefalls. Then the Chimer army came from the Inner Sea and brought reinforcements from Vvardenfell. Brothers General Balreth and Legate Sadal were with a small elite force that took refuge in a Daedric Ruin. The brothers sacrificed themselves to create the Brothers of Strife and defeated much of the Nedic army, but had killed many of the Chimer in the process. Because the Chimer had turned into the Dunmer following Azura's curse in 1E 700, it can be known that this battle had taken place prior to that.
Many events caused the Nede population to shrink in Tamriel, and as of the ninth century of the First Era they had been confined to the Alik'r Desert. When the Ra Gada of Yokuda had arrive in 1E 808, they attacked the Nedes. The Nedes had fled to Craglorn but were quickly annihilated by the invaders.
While the Nedic people have long since disappeared from Tamriel as a distinct culture and ethnicity, their bloodline still persists through the Imperials of Cyrodiil and to a lesser extent through the Nords of Skyrim. Many Nedes became the ancestors of today's Cyrodilic Imperials, while northern Nedic tribes interbred with the newly arrived invaders from Atmora in the Merethic Era, giving rise to the modern-day bloodlines of Skyrim's Nords.
Legacy and descendantsEdit
Their legacy is passed on by their descendants; mainly the Imperials of Cyrodiil. Despite playing a large part in eradicating the race, much of Nedic culture was also adopted by the Redguards. The most notable Nedic legacy was the slave queen St. Alessia's "Amulet of Kings", which was eventually sacrificed by Martin Septim in order to stop the Oblivion Crisis in the third and fourth eras. The Nedic people are still remembered for their profound feats in Metallurgy.
Few Nedes are known to have survived beyond the First Era, and even fewer remained sane. The most notable was Lamae Beolfag, or Lamae Bal, a young tribeswoman who was transformed by the Daedric Prince Molag Bal into the first known Vampire. Her state of undeath caused her to persist well into the later stages of the Second Era, as well as some of her clan members, who were also Nedic vampires. Another was Titus Valerius, who came from the First Era. He was brought into the year 2E 582 by The Warrior, who later returns him to his own time once his task is done. The Nedes in Shada's Tear lived as undead due to a curse, though only Nhalan remained conscious out of all of them. A Nedic vampire known as High King Durac lived into the Second Era as well, but was killed by the Vestige in 2E 582.
The Imperials are believed the most direct modern descendants of the Nedes. The Bretons are descendants of both Nedes and elves, though they are more prominently men. It is claimed that the most traditionally Nedic area of Tamriel is Nibenay, and that the Nibenese people are the closest thing to purebred Nedes.
The Nedes were known to have originally worshiped the star oriented beings known as the Celestials, having a particular fascination with the constellations and their aspects. The earliest Cyrodiilic Nedes were known to primarily venerate Shezarr as their patron deity, until they were conquered and enslaved by the elves, eventually taking up the Aldmeri Pantheon. After Alessia's rebellion, in order to appease the Nords who helped and the Nedes who were now accustomed to the Aldmeri Pantheon, she merged the two faiths into the Eight Divines religion.
The Nedes were known to have been skilled in stonework and made multiple cities and buildings out of stone, though much of it did not survive. One well Nedic ruin was that of Skyreach, built around and within the Dragontail Mountains.