The Accension War was one of the most destructive conflicts in Tamrielic history. The war was fought primarily, though not exclusively, in the provinces of Morrowind, Argonia, and Cyrodiil, and at various points involved most of the major countries of Tamriel.
The origins of the conflict and goals of the participants were complex and no one cause can accurately be described as the main reason for the fighting. Initially, the war was fought largely as an expansionary conflict between the Argonians of Argonia and the Dunmer of Morrowind, although disputes over religion and the balance of power in Tamriel played a significant part. Gradually the war developed into a more general conflict involving most of the Tamrielic powers. In this general phase the war became more of a continuation of the racial rivalries for Tamrielic preeminence, and in turn led to further warfare between Argonia, the Summerset Isles, Morrowind, Valenwood, and Skyrim, Cyrodiil, and High Rock.
A major impact of the Accension War, fought mostly by native and mercenary armies, was the extensive destruction of entire regions, denuded by foraging armies, and scorched earth policies. Episodes of famine and disease significantly decreased the populations of several of the warring countries of Tamriel, while bankrupting most of the combatants.
Year One (4E 25)Edit
Since the fall of the Septim Empire, the Dunmer from Morrowind stepped up the intensity and quantity of their slave raids into the northern regions of Black Marsh, also known as Argonia, defeating the small bands of Argonians attempting to defeat them and enslaving entire villages. At the same time, Argonia was in the process of unification under Thoricles Romus, the spirited and bellicose Argonian King, and was preparing to fight back against the slavers. In Morning Star in 4E 25, the Argonians fought back, defeating a major House Dres slave raid at the Dorsza Pass and a major Dunmer attempt to expand their territory.
The Argonians, following up on their successes, and taking advantage of the low Dunmer morale and lack of coordination among generals, and commanders, continued with their invasion, meeting and batting aside a poorly equipped Dunmer army. The Dunmer; however, defeated and, subsequently; halted the Argonian advance into Morrowind, at the military headquarters in southern Morrowind, Sotha Sil.
At the end of Morning Star in 4E 25, the Argonians, emboldened by their success throughout their invasion of Morrowind, decided that Caload, a small island off the coast of Argonia belonging to the Liilmothit (Argonian allies), belonged to them according to an ancient treaty, and sent troops to conquer the island. Liilmothit resistance was weak, but the King and Prince, as well as a majority of the Liilmothit soldiers managed to escape to mainland Argonia, from which they would continue the struggle.
Crisis in CyrodiilEdit
Meanwhile, the ongoing crisis in Cyrodiil about the government succeeding the Septim Dynasty seemed to have grown to a titanic size. Tiberius Stormrider, Champion of Cyrodiil and a leading member of the Elder Council, believed that the Elder Council should move its deliberations back to the Imperial City in the face of an impending invasion from either Argonia or Morrowind. Stormrider theorized that they should practice diplomacy in order to prevent an invasion of chaos ridden Cyrodiil, and to bring an end to the Accension War. His plans, however, were destroyed when an old enemy, Ammianus Antonius, returned to Cyrodiil. Antonius, an aged veteran of the Imperial Legion who had fought first in Elsweyr during the Khajiiti Wars and then again in support of the Dunmer slavers raiding into Argonia. Antonius was also a member of the Elder Council, but unlike Tiberius, he believed that Cyrodiil should assume an monarchy, but remain an isolationist state with the help and support of the Legion. Tiberius greatly opposed him, and argued that the Legion existed only for military reasons and should be excluded from political dealings and politics in general. After several weeks of debating and arguing, Tiberius gained the upper hand, and had persuaded several members of the Elder Council to see his views. Antonius, however, had not given up and believed that the tide could still turn in his favor.
Antonius seeking to turn the tables on Tiberius, traveled to Orsinium where he met with and recruited the assistance of his old friend and colleague, Burgo gro-Ulfsark, who was a long time Orcish patriot and rebel leader, who had often called for an independent Orsinium. One week later, gro-Ulfsark arrived in Cyrodiil, but Antonius plans were stymied when Tiberius, knowing of their connection, had the Elder Council put a bounty on gro-Ulfsark's head on the basis that he was a staunch soldier who had fought against the Imperial Legion constantly. Hoping to gain independence for Orsinium, he had agreed with Antonius' plans and had gone to Cyrodiil. However, he was stopped at the border by the Imperial Legion, and only barely managed to escape. Antonius, hearing of his plight, contacted the Orum gang and Camonna Tong, who agreed to assist him in gaining entrance. Once Burgo arrived in Cyrodiil, Antonius promised him independence for Orsinium and raised men, weapons, and money for Burgo to command against Tiberius. The beginning of the Accension War in Cyrodiil was about to begin.