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Where did the Elder Scrolls come from?

Yes I've read the article on UESP. It doesn't answer this question. I'm aware that it does say the Elder Scrolls both don't exist and have always existed, but that comes from Paarthurnax in Skyrim, who loved being unnecessarily vague (and freely admitted he was avoiding direct answers to keep you talking for longer) so I'm not convinced that means there wasn't a point where the scrolls first came to be, or at least first appeared within the Mundus.

But I can't find any mention of when or how that happened. Were they created by elves, men or some other race? Or were they created by something else and elves or men discovered them? Either way, when did that happen? There must presumably have been a time before the races of Tamriel knew about the Elder Scrolls, and a point where they were created, summoned, sent, discovered or whatever and then men and elves learned how to read and use them. But everything I can find seems to skip over all of that and just focus on how and why they're used and what they say.

I suppose the simple question is: What is the earliest chronological mention of the Elder Scrolls?
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  • RaddlemanNumber7
    "Merely asking the question evoked chuckles, as if a child was asking why dogs cannot talk."

    An Accounting of the Scrolls
    by Quintus Nerevelus, Former Imperial Librarian
    PC EU
  • prof-dracko
    They just are. No point thinking too hard about it.
  • anitajoneb17_ESO
    Danikat wrote: »
    I'm aware that it does say the Elder Scrolls both don't exist and have always existed, but that comes from Paarthurnax in Skyrim, who loved being unnecessarily vague [/b]

    They come from Michael Kirkbride, one of the 3 co-founders-designers of the series.
    Unfortunately, just like Paarthurnax, he loved being mysterious and unnecessarily vague. Or better said, purposedly vague.

    Other options include :
    - Forget it, it's chim.
    - It's just typically Elder-Scrolls-weird.

    I guess I'm not exactly answering your question here...

  • Elsonso
    Creation theory. What is the start to the universe, and what happened before that to make everything start? ... and before that? ...and...

    Every description of the Elder Scrolls, and what they are, comes from a perspective that is after the appearance of the Elder Scrolls. Nothing that we have interacted with in any of the games came from a perspective to know the answer. The earliest reference that we can find in any game writings or dialog will be ages after they were created.

    My best guess is that they are the byproduct of Anu and Padomay creating Time. As such, they existed before the Aedra and Daedra. They exist outside of our reality and probably do not really have a true physical form. They only appear to be scrolls when they manifest in our reality.
  • SpaceElf
    Elder Scrolls are just a fantasy version of quantum fluctuation in action lol
  • Juhasow
    The earliest chronological mention of The Elder Scrolls was in early 90's.
  • CE_Nex
    Paarthurnax says quite a bit about the Elder Scrolls, just need to pay attention to his words.
    Paarthurnax: "Hmm. How to explain in your tongue? The dov have words for such things that joorre do not. It is… an artifact from outside time. It does not exist, but it has always existed. Rah wahlaan. They are… hmm… fragments of creation."

    Paarthurnax: "You have it. The Kel - the Elder Scroll. Tiid kreh... qalos. Time shudders at its touch. There is no question. You are doom-driven. Kogaan Akatosh. The very bones of the earth are at your disposal."

    And then, when the Last Dragonborn witnesses the ancient Tongues banishing Alduin
    Felldir the Old: "Begone, World-Eater! By words with older bones than your own we break your perch on this age and send you out! You are banished! Alduin, we shout you out from all our endings unto the last!"

    Fragments of creation, bones of the earth: obviously the Elder Scrolls are tied to the creation of the Mundus and the Earth Bones. Now if they were created as part of the current Mundus, or past or future ones, who knows?
    Edited by CE_Nex on March 31, 2020 5:21AM
  • Pheefs
    As far as the timeline goes, when the Ayleids fall The Moth Priests take over the responsibility for the scrolls...
    so knowledge of the scrolls pre-dates the First Era.
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  • prof-dracko
    Cygemai_Hlervu basically broke the whole thing down pretty well. We have no REAL answers, but what's implied indicates they're both the code, the script and the lore of the games in one, both breaking the fourth wall and residing within the reality of the games. In a practical sense, they are and can do whatever is needed to further the plot because they are the plot.
  • Ajaxandriel
    The Elder Scrolls are basically the data of the real-world games "The Elder Scrolls" mirroring themselves in Mundus into those strange parchments.
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