The Northshire Abbey
|Formerly||Abbot of Northshire Abbey|
|Character classes||Cleric, Priest, Paladin|
|Other major settlements||Stormwind City|
|Base of operations||Cathedral of Light|
|Theater of operations||Continent of Azeroth|
|Affiliation||Church of the Holy Light, Kingdom of Stormwind, Alliance|
|Formerly||Kingdom of Lordaeron, Alliance of Lordaeron|
The Brotherhood of Northshire (formerly known as the Holy Order of Northshire Clerics or Clerics of Northshire) is a clerical order, comprised of clerics, priests, and paladins based at the Northshire Abbey, in the Northshire Valley of Elwynn Forest. It's a branch of the Church of the Holy Light dedicated to the cause of the Kingdom of Stormwind.
For decades, the Holy Order of Northshire Clerics supported the citizens of the kingdom and ensured the protection of the realm alongside the Stormwind Army. During the First War, the clerics were slaughtered by the orcs of the Old Horde, their sacrifice for the kingdom would later inspired Archbishop Alonsus Faol to create the Order of the Silver Hand during the Second War.
Following the victory of the Alliance of Lordaeron, Alonsus Faol restored the clerical order as the "Brotherhood of Northshire". Since, its members continue to support the Church of the Light and the people of Stormwind, notably by recruiting adventurers to deal with threats to the kingdom, and by ensuring the training of the young paladins of the Silver Hand and the priests of the clergy.
The Holy Order of Northshire Clerics traced its roots to the Church of the Holy Light in Lordaeron. Long ago, devout clerics from the emergent Church had ventured south from Lordaeron to spread their faith in the continent of Azeroth. Upon reaching Stormwind, these pious established the Northshire Abbey and become a critical component of the kingdom. The kingdom looked to these clerics as a source of wisdom and comfort in hard times, while the devout clerics used the powers of the Light to soothe the hearts and minds of Stormwind's citizens, and even helped the army of their kingdom fight through its life. The clerics had also been present on the battlefields of various conflicts, including the Gnoll War and the Gurubashi War. In some cases, their compassion had even been granted them safety on the battlefield, as they were known to heal gnolls and jungle trolls in the past.
On the eve of Medivh's Age of Ascension, a backlash of energies poured from the child, and only the combined powers of a hundred clerics and the Court Conjurer Nielas Aran were able to properly contain him, before he succumbed to a coma. Medivh was then taken to Northshire Valley to be tended by the clerics, until he awoke a decade later, assuring them that he was fine.
A Stormwind citizen described them as: These are the holy men of our kingdom. Their spiritual leadership keeps both the people and the troops of Azeroth focused upon our mission of everlasting peace. Their ability to channel the spirit of humanity through their bodies makes them truly wondrous, and stories of their ability to heal the sick and injured, as well as being able to affect the perceptions of others, are miraculous in nature. The transgressions against Humanity by the Orcs have forced them to devise ways to defend themselves, but their true path remains the healing of men's souls.
Their pious clerics were recognized as warrior priests.
Once the First war had begun, led by Abbot of Northshire Abbey, the clerics joined the battle and risked their lives to heal soldiers wounded in combat. In the past they were known to heal wounded gnolls and trolls, which had even granted them safety on the battlefield in some cases. This was not the case with the orcs, who ruthlessly targetted every cleric they found after learning of their abilities, as the healers could return a wounded human to battle. Many clerics died without armor or weapons, but they never hesitated from joining battle, making their bravery legendary among Stormwind's forces who considered them as one of the great sources of hope on the battlefield.
Outside of Northshire Abbey, the churches in the kingdom were the places that housed the clerics, as they provided a place for them to commune with the people of the land. It was the only place where clerics would come together for their ceremonies, and many could be recruited there to help rid the land of orcs. They also continued to train there to increase their understandings of the spiritual forces.
During the war, the Tome of Divinity, a book of great value to the Clerics of Northshire, was stolen by a rogue band of ogres led by the ogre lord Turok. As the clerics asked for the retrieval of the sacred texts, Lothar undertook the quest and led an expedition into the ogres' hideout, the Deadmines in Westfall, in an attempt to recover the tome, but were completely overrun and held captive to be killed slowly. Lothar remained imprisoned until he and his few surviving men were saved by the troops led by the Defender of the Crown sent by the Abbot of Northshire Abbey and King Llane. He retrieved the Tome of Divinity and returned to Stormwind, safeguarding the book at Northshire Abbey. Reintroduced to the conflict, Lothar led the armies of Stormwind into battle against the orcs.
At some point, Northshire Abbey was besieged by a band of brigands that have been convinced by the Old Horde to fight against the crown. The Defender of the Crown was sent with Stormwind troops and managed to save the abbey. However, when the half-orc Garona Halforcen has been discovered by the clerics of Northshire Abbey and imprisoned there, she was soon rescued by the Old Horde and the abbey was destroyed.
However, although brave and adept in both the healing and the destructive powers of the Light, the clerics were unprepared for the dangers of war and suffered heavy losses as time goes. After the orcs decimated the kingdom, the surviving clerics fled with Anduin Lothar to Southshore in Lordaeron, while the High Clerist of Stormwind, Lady Mara Fordragon, became the patron of the refugees of the war who chose to flee to the northern lands of Lordaeron, untouched by the fighting.
Following the end of the First War in orcish victory, the Archbishop of the Church of the Holy Light, Alonsus Faol, who had recently learned everything that had transpired in Stormwind, including how the clerics had fared, met the Supreme Commander of the Alliance forces, Anduin Lothar, and offered him to create a new order that would suffer less attrition in battle. Along with his apprentice, Uther, Alonsus Faol founded the paladin Order of the Silver Hand. Several clerics of the Northshire were present for the induction ceremony for Tirion Fordring in Alonsus Chapel, and possibly for the others' as well. The paladins, while still possessing spirit of the clerics who preceded them, were also mighty knights talented in the arts of war. During the months following the start of the war, Alonsus Faol recruited knights willing to learn how to wield the Light and clerics ready to take up arms for their noble cause in order to become members of the Silver Hand.
After the end of the Second War, where the Order of the Silver Hand greatly helped the Alliance of Lordaeron to overcome the Horde's might, Archbishop Faol aided in rebuilding Northshire Abbey and helped in the creation of a new clerical order, comprised of clerics, priests and paladins, which was dubbed the Brotherhood of Northshire.
After the lands of Lordaeron were corrupted by the undead Scourge during the Third War, the surviving priests escaped to Stormwind and attempted to salvage their holy order: combining their forces with those of the clerics of Northshire, the weathered healers founded a new priesthood to guide their people in trouble times. Under the Church of Light's leadership, the Knights of the Silver Hand and the Church's clergy were reformed, while Benedictus, a student of Alonsus Faol, took charge of the Church as its new Archbishop and swore to continue the work his mentor had begun so many years ago.
World of Warcraft
In recent years, the clerics began to use Northshire Abbey as a recruitment and training center for any adventurer brave enough to help keep the kingdom's peace, notably after Northshire Valley has been suffering a kobold infestation, increasing numbers of wolves, and the growing presence of bandits known as the Defias Brotherhood in the region. They also allowed trainers for mages, warriors, and monks inside the abbey.
Among the members of the Brotherhood, some act as the Abbey's caretakers, while others may be copying books to add to the Abbey's library. Some take care of the formation of the priests of the Church of the Holy Light, as well as the paladins of the Order of the Silver Hand.
This section concerns content related to The Burning Crusade.
Following the Cataclysm, the clerics of Northshire helped to repel the Blackrock invasion in the Northshire Vineyards. They notably healed the Stormwind Infantry who fought against the orcs and their worgs, and sent adventurers to support the Stormwind army. They also continue to train apprentice priests and paladins, including how to use their holy powers.
During the third invasion of the Burning Legion, while not directly stated, the Brotherhood of Northshire was represented by Brother Sammuel during the union ceremony of every paladin order on Azeroth into a restored Order of the Silver Hand, pledging allegiance to the new Highlord of the Silver Hand following the death of Tirion Fordring during the Battle for Broken Shore.
|Abbot of Northshire Abbey||Abbot||Former leader of the Abbaye||Unknown||Unknown|
|Mara Fordragon||Lady||High Clerist of Stormwind||Unknown||Deceased|
|Anetta||Priestess||Priest Trainer||Northshire Valley, Elwynn Forest||Alive|
|Danil||Brother||General goods vendor||Northshire Valley, Elwynn Forest||Alive|
|Neals||Brother||Inventory of the Abbaye||Northshire Valley, Elwynn Forest||Alive|
|Paxton||Brother||Librarian of the Abbaye||Northshire Valley, Elwynn Forest||Alive|
|Sammuel||Brother||Paladin trainer||Northshire Abbey, Elwynn Forest||Alive|
|Trevor||Cleric of the Argent Dawn, former member of the Clerics of Northshire||Unknown||Active (Undead)|
The Clerics of Northshire once claimed their mission was to achieve "everlasting peace".
The invasion of the Orcish hordes has necessitated the clerics to change their method, in order to not protect only themselves, but the whole of the people of the Kingdom of Stormwind. The use of physical violence is not the calling of their order, but for the clerics, each force must be met with an equal force for the balance of good and evil to be preserved, so they take up holy arms to defend their lands.
The aiding of their people in times of sorrow, grief, and illness is the primary concern of the clerics of Northshire Abbey. This has required them to devise a way to ease the burdens of those about them, with out causing another an equal burden. This has led them to use the spirit of humanity itself to heal all forms of injury or disease. They believed that the pain and injury of the one afflicted are divided amongst all humanity, making the burden easier to bear.
The clerics of Northshire had many specific magical spells. The Invisibility power was originally employed as a tool to make the confessing of secrets that weighed heavily upon the souls of worshipers easier to speak. The clerics had also developed farseeing spells, using this divination to keep a clear perspective and see things in an all encompassing fashion even from faraway locations. These specific incantations were transcribed to books and spread over Azeroth, with the Invisibility magic eventually taken by the mages of Dalaran, while Farseeing ended up in Karazhan's library.
- See Belief retcon.
In Warcraft: Orcs and Humans, they were described as worshippers of "God", though whether or not this referred to a specific deity within a pantheon or a single deity is not known, and believed in "angels", "daemons", "Hell", and "Heaven". This is continued through into Warcraft II, with references to "God", "angels", and "heaven".
Since Warcraft III, they are shown as followers of the Holy Light, a philosophy that does not follow any particular theology and which boils down to the three teachings called the Three Virtues. As this religion is more philosophical than theistic, its practitioners do believe their devotion connects them to a greater and mysterious force in the universe. The general ideology of the Light is to strive to be good in all actions, but also seek to be the best of oneself, and thus continue to make the world a better place.
In the RPG
These holy folk maintain an outpost of the grand Cathedral of Light in Stormwind. Northshire Abbey sits in Elwynn’s northeastern corner, in the middle of the woods. Beyond their holy duties, the priests hunt the dangerous animals in the forest and will lead any lost traveler back to the monastery for a hot meal, a bed, flawless directions out of the woods and healing, if necessary.
Notes and trivia
- The churches in the Kingdom of Stormwind, built by the clerics of Northshire, were made with a rare wood known as Holyoak.
- A tithe must be made to the Church of the Holy Light for their services in order that new clerics may be trained, and other sites made sacred.
- When they were enlightened by a new revelation, the kernel of that knowledge was sown among all followers of the faith, and it blossomed into the minds of all clerics throughout the lands.
- The Invisibility spell of the clerics might have inspired the priest spell.
- According to older accounts, the aged Alonsus Faol was the Abbot of Northshire Abbey himself and fled with the surviving citizens of Stormwind to Lordaeron.
- It is possible that the Clerics and some Knights of the Silver Hand found their basis of this "God" from one of the creation myths of Azeroth, as well as knowledge of the angels. Several references state that some in Azeroth believe that the universe was created by "a singular, all-powerful entity".
- As a paladin trainer in Goldshire, Brother Wilhelm may be a member of the Brotherhood. As a priest and a wine vendor participating in the Brewfest, Brother Cartwright is also presumably a member.
Northshire Guardian in the Trading Card Game.
- Northshire Cleric TCG.jpg
Northshire Cleric in the TCG.
The formation of the Silver Hand, as featured in World of Warcraft Chronicle Tribute: Hourglass of Time. Artist unknown.
- ^ Characters of Warcraft - Uther the Lightbringer
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2, pg. 125
- ^ Warcraft: Orcs & Humans human manual, pg. 17
- ^ Warcraft: Orcs & Humans human manual, pg. 18
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, pg. 162
- ^ a b Warcraft: Orcs & Humans manual, Azeroth Army of the First War, Cleric
- ^ a b Of Blood and Honor, chapter 2
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2, pg. 125 - 126
- ^ a b c d Warcraft: Orcs & Humans manual, Azeroth Army of the First War, Church
- ^ The Dead Mines (WC1 Human)
- ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual
- ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual, Legends of the Land, Sir Anduin Lothar
- ^ Northshire Abbey (WC1 Human)
- ^ Northshire Abbey (WC1 Orc)
- ^ Tides of Darkness, chapter 5
- ^ Lady Mara Fordragon#Stormwind City statue tribute
- ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual, Clans of the Horde, Twilight's Hammer Clan
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2, pg. 154
- ^ Uther Lightbringer, The Paladin
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 2, pg. 148 - 149
- ^ Alonsus Faol#Death and remembrance
- ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual, Mage Spells
- ^ Arthas: Rise of the Lich King, pg. 21, 35, 133-134
- ^ Alpha World of Warcraft class description, The Cutting Room Floor
- ^ World of Warcraft: Game Manual, pg. 170
- ^ Races of World of Warcraft: Human
- ^ a b c Warcraft: Orcs & Humans manual, Azeroth Army of the First War, Cleric Spells
- ^ Blizzard Entertainment. Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness Manual, 38.
- ^ Alliance Player's Guide, pg. 152
- ^ a b Lands of Conflict, pg. 50
- ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual, Legends of the Land, Sire Uther Lightbringer
- ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual, A Brief History of the Fall of Azeroth, The Alliance of Lordaeron
- ^ Tides of Darkness
- ^ Blizzard Entertainment. Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos Manual, 133.