The Journal of Adosi Revur found in Bal Sunnar states "For nearly three eras, Bal Sunnar has stood secluded from the world. Over thirty-five thousand years ago, the Matriarch brought this settlement into existence. Now, upon her return, I suspect she heralds its destruction."
However, based on context clues and other dates, I believe that "thousand" is a typo and the book should instead read "thirty-five hundred."
For those who haven't done the dungeon's associated quest, "Unstuck from Time," you help a Psijic, Saresea, investigate a time distortion in the settlement. You arrive in the town in the current year (2E 582) but after defeating the first boss, Saresea attempts to remove the distortion, but her efforts result in your group being sent back in time to when the settlement was under construction. After an encounter with the leader of the settlement, Matriarch Lladi Telvanni, Saresea's efforts again result in your traveling through time to the future, where the sky is red and the settlement is being pelted with falling rocks. After defeating the Matriarch, Saresea's final efforts to correct the distortion return you to 2E 582, but at the cost of rendering the Psijic multichronal--spread across time, experiencing her past, present, and future as one. Throughout the dungeon, the enemies recognize you and Saresea as the "Scourge" who took their Matriarch away. After completing the quest, it becomes obvious in hindsight that you created a stable time loop: you go to the past and send the Matriarch to the future, causing her to be absent in the present and yourself to be recognized as the Scourge.
According to the Journal of Nerile Belvayn
, Bal Sunnar was founded in the First Era after the Battle of Red Mountain. Nerile writes "Many of us, maybe all, did not approve of the political maneuverings we saw happen back home. Reverence of self-appointed gods does not sit well..."
, which is almost certainly referring to the rise of the Tribunal after the Battle of Red Mountain. This assertion is strengthened by the phrasing Kovan Giryon uses in his journal
, writing that "Our Mother [Matriarch Lladi Telvanni] should have lived a thousand years. She should have rivaled the false gods..."
; the phrase "false gods" is often used in Morrowind dialogue and books to refer to the Tribunal (notably in "The Seven Visions"
of the Nerevarine prophecies--"His mercy frees the cursed false gods / Binds the broken, redeems the mad"
If Bal Sunnar was founded around the time of the Tribunal's ascension, then it would've been founded around 1E 668. The date of the Battle of Red Mountain is given as 1E 700 in Dwemer Inquiries
in Skyrim, though I believe that the 1E 668 date better matches other sources, such as The Five Songs of King Wulfharth
, Poison Song
, and the Iliath Temple loading screen that states that it was converted to worship of the Tribunal in 1E 670. In any case, this discrepancy does not actually impact the analysis.
The final section of the dungeon features a red sky and showers the player with volcanic rock. Adosi writes in her journal that "Several days past, a sound cracked so loud I thought Nirn itself had split in two. The sky turned red and filled with smoke. We have not seen the sun since. Fire and stone rains down, destroying our home. No one knows what's happened to cause this. Perhaps it is a punishment."
This appears to refer to the Red Year, which occurred in 4E 5.
So, we can count the years since the founding of Bal Sunnar using dates given in other books from across the series. The First Era ended in 1E 2920 with the assassination of Emperor Reman III and the creation of the Akaviri Potentate; the Second Era ended in 2E 896 when Tiber Septim was crowned emperor; the Third Era ended in 3E 433 when Martin Septim sacrificed himself to end the Oblivion Crisis. So, from 1E 668 to 4E 5, it's 3,586 years--in other words, if the journal said "hundred" instead of "thousand," it'd match exactly.
I believe that the journal states "thousand" due to the real-world's author's confusion between using "something-hundred" to refer to thousands--lord knows I've made the same mistake. The issue was likely not caught because it was not a spelling error.
Therefore, I believe the offending sentence in the Journal of Adosi Fevur should be edited to change "thousand" to "hundred" because this comports with the established timeline of the series.