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How did the practice of Shadowscales start?

WhiteCoatSyndrome
WhiteCoatSyndrome
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We know that the Argonians dedicate most of their hatchlings who are born under the Shadow to Sithis and the Dark Brotherhood. But when did this start, and why? The Argonians generally seem to revere the Hist alone and ignore other entities, how did Sithis get a pass? And why only the hatchlings born under the Shadow?
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  • Tyrobag
    Tyrobag
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    The Argonians worship the Hist, and the Hist respect Sithis: "It is believed that the Hist acknowledge Sithis' role as the Original Creator." (en.uesp.net/wiki/Lore:Hist)

    The reason for Argonians born under the shadow becoming Shadowscales is likely because of the fact that those born under the shadow are extra sneaky and can become invisible. Such a gift would be quickly attributed to Sithis in a society that reveres him.

    The Dark Brotherhood would be quick to snatch up assassins with such natural talent. The deal between the king of Blackmarsh and the Dark Brotherhood would be mutually beneficial, the king of Blackmarsh gets the Brotherhood's services, and the Brotherhood gets some of Tamriel's most effective assassins.
    Edited by Tyrobag on July 20, 2017 1:00AM
  • Dustfinger81
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    What Tyrobag said. My own speculation here but since we know Shadowscales aren't allowed to kill each other, it coukld also serve to be the Kings' (and by extension, the Argonains government proper's) way of being involved and gaining info on the rest of the world.
  • LMar
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    The Hist came from plane of Oblivion (or at least a plane similar to Oblivion) which was destroyed. Since Oblivion and the Void are related and also have a connection to Sithis in general Padomaically aligned) it'd be natural for the Hist to aknowledge Sithis.

    The Shadows of the Hist DLC also hints at the Hist Sap to ooze from Oblivion and to be a form of chaotic creatia. In essence the stuff of Oblivion from which things are made. And the Hist use their sap to change things to how they want it to be.

    The Shadowscales can be considered a form of change/rebellion/source of upheaval as they can be hired to remove people stagnating in positions of power (though this actually fits the Dark Brotherhood more neatly and could be why Shadowscales were sent to them). They essentially do what Sithis is ( chaos itself) and by doing that they are his hand on Nirn.

    At least that is my perspective on it. And the Hist/Argonian civilisation eschewed stone buildings because of their permanence. Their old civilisation underwent a massive decline, in my opinion because they started forgetting about all the change and chaos stuff. There's a note somewhere about the Fangs of Sithis which might have started the decline of the older civilisation and there's a quest in Shadowfen regarding the Fangs which also appear to be weapons for the Shadowscales. You know, the bringers/manifestations of change/chaos
    Edited by LMar on July 28, 2017 10:00AM
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  • Dustfinger81
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    LMar wrote: »

    The Shadowscales can be considered a form of change/rebellion/source of upheaval as they can be hired to remove people stagnating in positions of power (though rhis actually fits the Dark Brotherhood more neatly and could be whu Shadowscales were sent to them). They essentially do what Sithis is ( chaos itself) and by doing that they are his hand on Nirn.

    This is a good point. To further it, we see that Shadowscales who stay with the Dark Brotherhood and don't serve the Argonian government are still Shadowscales. So, it seems that whatever Argonian royal government there is, wants their own representation among Sithis' killers.

    edit: Although, the governments Shadowscales do act as a police force and "hand of the king" to enact swamp justice in Argonia, so that may be a mark against chaos. But that I suppose any mortal government would need some amount of order and structure. Similar to the Hist not being pure chaos themselves.
    Edited by Dustfinger81 on July 28, 2017 9:56AM
  • elias.stormneb18_ESO
    Tyrobag wrote: »
    The Argonians worship the Hist, and the Hist respect Sithis: "It is believed that the Hist acknowledge Sithis' role as the Original Creator." (en.uesp.net/wiki/Lore:Hist)

    The reason for Argonians born under the shadow becoming Shadowscales is likely because of the fact that those born under the shadow are extra sneaky and can become invisible. Such a gift would be quickly attributed to Sithis in a society that reveres him.

    The Dark Brotherhood would be quick to snatch up assassins with such natural talent. The deal between the king of Blackmarsh and the Dark Brotherhood would be mutually beneficial, the king of Blackmarsh gets the Brotherhood's services, and the Brotherhood gets some of Tamriel's most effective assassins.

    The Shadowscales definitely predate the Brotherhood, though; and thery are separate organizations (buth with a lot of cooperation between them).
  • Korah_Eaglecry
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    As far as Im aware there is no actual story behind the formation of the Shadowscales. But this isnt unique to this one organization. There is very little we know of Black Marsh as a whole and its inner workings. We have tidbits of lore to go on when it comes to the homeland of the Argonians.

    Hopefully when ZOS gets around to filling in Black Marsh beyond Shadowfen we will get more insightful lore regarding this shadow organization.
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  • ChibchanLawyer
    As Korah pointed out above, there isn't a lot of canon knowledge available on Argonian practices and culture. If I were to make a guess, that tradition and the Shadowscales themselves were probably from around the time when Argonians lived in complete isolation and built the Xanmeers and Stellae around Black Marsh. Argonians in the Pact campaign from the time of ESO themselves admit that they don't completely know the story of their ancestor's practices and Xanmeers.

    Since ZOS already published two assasin-ish-themed DLCs for ESO (Dark Brotherhood and Morrowind with the Morag Tong), I find it hardly likely that they will come up with a new one about Shadowscales. But maybe a Little ways down the road we might get some more insight on them, or if there is ever an Elder Scrolls game set in Black Marsh, the Shadowscales will surely have an extensive backround released.
  • LMar
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    Apparently datamined books from Murkmire tell of a story of an Argonian war veteran (and a very curious one) coming back to Black Marsh to learn more about the stories of her ancestors. We might learn more about the past then
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  • Ulo
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    Really eager to learn more about Argonian culture and wish there was more information available, but that empty void in the south east of tamriel has to be accessible at some point, with plenty of hard juicy lore to go along with it.
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