Varrock's history is unique in Gielinor, spanning many hundreds of years and time periods. The history of humanity is largely dependant on that of Varrock. Events are listed in chronological order. More information can be found in the Varrock article.
Senntisten, the older of the two, was in existence in the Second Age, during which it extended from the modern Digsite to Edgeville. Archaeological finds indicate that Senntisten was the capital of Zaros' kingdom, which included the modern-day Wilderness, Misthalin, and Asgarnia, as well as parts of Morytania. Under the god's rule, Senntisten grew to be the largest city in the history of Gielinor.
Despite Zaros's immense power, a number of his followers were able to overthrow him. Under the Mahjarrat general Zamorak, a number of warriors, including Thammaron, Hazeel, Zemouregal, Lord Drakan, and Viggora, were able to banish Zaros. Inadvertently, when Zamorak slew Zaros with the Staff of Armadyl, the god's power was transferred to him, ascending Zamorak to godhood. This tale can be seen again in the Children of Mah quest.
During the Third Age's cataclysmic God Wars, Senntisten served as the last stronghold for what few Zarosians had not already been forced to flee to the Kharidian Desert. However, the conflicts that engulfed the world at the time eventually defeated Zaros, and Zamorakian soldiers claimed the ruined city as their own. The length of their rule is unknown, although finds at the city's ruins suggest it lasted at least until the year 3704 of the Third Age.
Saradominists claimed the city in roughly 3740, destroying it entirely in an effort to cover up the existence of Zaros. Over it they built the city of Saranthium, a Saradominst city meant solely to hide Senntisten's remains. Saranthium, despite being the only settlement to survive the God Wars, later fell to an unknown force, possibly due to the economic and cultural regress of the early years of the Fourth Age. Unknowingly, roughly 700 to 1,000 years later, the city of Varrock would be built over the remains of both.
The founding of VarrockEdit
Avarrocka (later Varrock) came into being in the year 700 of the Fourth Age, when the races that survived the God Wars began to compete for land without the direct aid of gods. At the time, the world was dangerous, and most of humanity lived in small nomadic tribes intent solely on surviving.
One of these tribes, led by a small group of elders, was looking to settle in the forested territory that is now Misthalin. As they searched, they discovered a young boy, about two years of age, wandering near the River Lum, unable to remember his parents or speak. The boy was not ordinary, though, and stood nearly a foot taller than most his age. The wanderers, taking the boys' strength as a good omen, made a camp in the forest. It is said that, on that day, "both sun and moon were mingled in the sky."
The settlement, then known as Avarrocka, initially struggled for survival. Although the land was fertile and the forest was home to many species of animals, the town was continuously plundered by goblins, who sought slaughter and wealth. The goblins were descendants of those that fought in the God Wars, and so they were considerably stronger than those today. They were occasionally scared off by Avarrockian soldiers, but not before they took many lives, and stole much wealth from the human city.
Apart from the occasional goblin raid, though, Avarrocka existed in relative peace. Ruled by the Elders of Avarrocka, the settlement remained safe, although it grew little. The hunters and farmers of the area soon began to understand the cycles of the area, and their understanding of the land allowed them to establish a more permanent life in the area.
The boy they had discovered in the woods was taught the ways of life, learning to farm, hunt, and fight. In all of these things he showed natural prowess, growing succulent fruits and even catching a legendary White Stag.
Some 10 years after Avarrocka's founding, in the year 710, the Elders decided that the boy they had discovered needed to earn a name. They sent the boy from the city, telling him to find a name.
For days the boy wandered, travelling far from the village. One night, he came upon a camp of goblins, who planned to attack Avarrocka. Seeing the child, the goblins screamed "Arrav!", a curse in the old goblin language. The boy single-handedly defeated the entire goblin horde, saving Avarrocka from certain destruction. When the boy returned, the Elders named him Arrav, saying that he was a curse upon goblins.
In the coming years, Avarrocka grew, its defeat of the goblins a rallying point for others who wandered the area. The land's fertile soil allowed for massive economic growth and a high standard of living. The goblins, realising the city's new strength, avoided conflict.
The Shield of the WorldsEdit
Some time after Arrav's defeat of the goblins, a new threat arose: Zemouregal, a Mahjarrat and powerful necromancer, appeared to Arrav in the realm of dreams. Here he told Arrav of his plans to destroy the city using Arrav as his slave.
Arrav told the Elders of his dream. For seven days the Elders discussed the meaning of the encounter, finally deciding that it was a bad omen and that Arrav could not remain in Avarrocka. The eldest of them, a man who had lived since long before the settlement's founding, recalled a dream from his youth of a shield that had come to Gielinor from another world. Knowing that finding this shield was an impossible task, they sent Arrav on the quest.
Arrav wandered for what may have been years, coming across strange beasts and who some believe to be Saradomin, Guthix, and Zamorak. He met the Imcando dwarves at the base of Ice Mountain, whom he stayed with for some time because they claimed to have knowledge of the shield he sought. After some time he gained the trust of the elder Imcando dwarf, who eventually asked Arrav why he sought the shield. The elder dwarf revealed that the Imcando guarded the shield, and that it was a powerful artefact that could be devastating in the wrong hands. Arrav told his tale, but at the mention of Zamouregal, the elder dwarf asked him to leave, as the Imcando feared his presence would alert Zemouregal to their home.
The destruction of Avarrocka and the end of the Goblin conflictsEdit
Arrav, still determined to obtain the shield one way or another, decided to return to Avarrocka only to find that it had been burnt to the ground by goblins during his absence. Arrav found survivors in the city's "sacred place to the east" (whom some suspect were the ruins of Saranthium). Together, he and what few soldiers remained travelled to the Garagorshuun and Thorobshuun goblin camp in the west. When they arrived, Arrav decided that neither side could benefit from the battle, and ultimately made a peace with the goblins that lasts even to this day.
Today, those that inhabit the Goblin Village are the descendants of these tribes.
Two years after Arrav made peace with the goblins, Zemouregal came to him in a nightmare. The Mahjarrat assured the destruction of not only Avarrocka, but all humans, wherever they were. Arrav immediately fled the city to the safety of the Imcando dwarves. He begged the elder dwarf for the shield and, realising the destruction of the dwarves was inevitable should humanity fall, the dwarf gave Arrav the legendary shield. Soon after, the city was soon besieged by a massive army of the undead that had been brought from the Wilderness. Lead by Zemouregal, they nearly destroyed the city, and only very narrowly did Arrav manage to defeat them with the help of the shield; but the battle cost him his life. Even so, the battle was difficult to win; the aid of the Imcando dwarves was a decisive factor in the city's victory. Following these events, the city remained in relative peace for some time, growing and becoming the capital of the developing nation of Misthalin.
The "official" creation of Misthalin is believed to have occurred in around this time, although at that time it was little more than a collection of tribes that paid homage to the city of Avarrocka. Establishing trade via the River Lum and claiming a wide track of land, its importance soon became apparent.
Some time after the defeat of Zemouregal, Varrock's government changed from an oligarchy to a monarchy. This hailed a more organised government system, enabling the establishment of a rough feudal system and the organisation of fiefdoms.
Sometime in the early Fourth Age, when the city was still known as Avarrocka, a number of soldiers were sent to the Kharidian Desert for unknown reasons. Several of these soldiers invaded Enakhra's Temple, seeking to slay the Mahjarrat Enakhra. All were killed save for one, who is still trapped in the Temple to this day.
In the years 1100 to 1200 of the Fourth Age, Avarrocka, now called Varrock, proved an important defensive area as the forces of Morytania attempted to cross the River Salve and lay waste to the lands beyond the Silvarea.
Lord Lowerniel Vergidiyad Drakan, having conquered Hallowvale during the God Wars and transformed its capital into the ghetto of Meiyerditch, now sought to increase his footholds in the Kharidian Desert. His offensive soon cost him what small amount of power he had gained in the desert, forcing him to focus instead on Misthalin.
For years a series of battles were fought north-east of Varrock. The Morytanian hordes slowly gained land and forced the organised Varrockian militia back. The military, apart from the soldiers of Varrock, consisted mostly of mercenaries and untrained soldiers from small villages in Misthalin and modern-day Asgarnia. When faced with the bloodthirsty werewolves, vampyres, and other beasts of Drakan, they stood little chance.
The tides turned when Seven Priestly Warriors arose. These warriors, consisting of Guthixians and Saradominists from many small settlements, travelled the land spreading their cause and encouraging common villagers to aid in the fight against Drakan.
Their plan worked, and soon thousands of warriors gathered in Varrock. Here they were blessed in the name of Saradomin by the Seven, who then led a massive onslaught against the forces of Morytania. The Morytanians were quickly pushed back, until eventually the Seven Warriors forced them out of Misthalin entirely. To ensure that they could not return, the River Salve that divided the regions was blessed, theoretically preventing the unholy Morytanians from entering Misthalin. Over the Salve was built the temple of Paterdomus, where priests and soldiers gathered as protectors.
In the year 1777, Paterdomus records indicate that settlers from Misthalin travelled into Morytania, believing the tales of its horrors to be only legends. Eventually, nearly all of the settlers, with the exception of those who reached modern-day Port Phasmatys and Fenkenstrain's Castle, all succumbed to the might of Drakan.
In the year 1937, Lumbridge was established as an official settlement, prompting a great increase in trade with regions such as Entrana, Karamja, and Al Kharid. This naturally led to an increase in Varrock's wealth.
Although details of Lumbridge's founding are few, it seems that Lumbridge was given to Polonius, a feudal vassal in the service of Misthalin. He was given the area by King Claudius in exchange for his services.
The discovery of runesEdit
In the year 2000, a wizard discovered rune essence, a material which, when taken to altars constructed by the Moonclan, could be turned into runestones. This allowed, humans to cast magic at will. This event led to the beginning of the Fifth Age and the beginning of human dominance in Gielinor.
The founding of AsgarniaEdit
Under the tribal King Raddallin, the villages of the developing nation of Asgarnia were united, the capital city of Falador protected by the White Knights and the Kinshra. This would prove a time of great prosperity for Varrock, as an alliance was forged with Asgarnia and the two nations became increasingly supportive of each other.
Construction of Varrock SewersEdit
In the year 17 of the Fifth Age, King Botolph, a former monarch of Varrock, ordered an extensive sewer system to be constructed beneath the palace; a revolutionary idea at the time. During the construction, several giants of grass and plant, now known as Moss Giants, had impeded progress for quite some time, but the construction eventually continued. Around year 20 the sewer was complete, running beneath the entire city.
In the year of 20, several Zamorakian insurgents planning to summon Delrith, an infamous demon to annihilate Varrock were stopped by one of Grüfeld Bach's ancestors using the legendary demon-slaying sword, Silverlight. Delrith was subsequently banished from Gielinor.
The Barbarian invasionsEdit
During the years 42-62, a group of the Fremennik tribe broke off and attacked northern Kandarin and Asgarnia, seeking to put an end to the production of runestones. They firmly believed that only the gods could wield magic and that it was not humanity's place to even consider such a thing. Varrock was forced to arm itself when, in the year 47, a number of barbarian sympathisers attacked and destroyed the Mage Training Arena near Al Kharid. The invasions ended when the barbarians settled down on Misthalin's western border (in the area where Gunnarsgrunn is today), waiting to gather their forces and attack once more. However, when the Wizards' Tower was destroyed by Zamorakians, they decided to cancel the invasions. In modern times, Gunnarsgrunn is a lasting reminder of the invasions.
Burning of the Wizards' Tower and Zamorakian conflictEdit
Until the year 70, Zamorakians had been tolerated by society, despite their role in the God Wars. When Zamorakian mages destroyed the original Wizards' Tower in southern Misthalin, a massive anti-Zamorak movement began. In Varrock, this hammer fell hardest, with nearly all of the city's Zamorakian residents being either killed, imprisoned, or exiled. The Dagon'hai, a cult of mages loyal to Zamorak, waged a silent war against the city's Saradominst priests. Many were found dead, their throats slit and their bodies hidden in the city's darkest alleys. Only with a great deal of luck were the Dagon'hai found and eventually forced to flee, vanishing mysteriously as they left. They now hide in the underground complex beneath the Saradomin statue to the east of the city.
Destruction of Crandor and its effectsEdit
In the year 139, contact was lost with the island-city of Crandor. Crandor, at the time, was a mighty city-state that possessed a great deal of political power, matching important cities such as Varrock and Falador. It was soon discovered that the dragon Elvarg had awakened and destroyed Crandor, while also charring an area of countryside near Rimmington. This caused hysteria across the mainland, prompting leaders, including Varrock's king, to organise military defences against the dragon, whom they feared could attack the mainland.
In the year 143 of the Fifth Age, the Phoenix Gang infiltrated the Varrock Museum, stealing the Shield of Arrav that had saved Varrock and crowned the Museum for 150 years. Before they could sell it, however, internal conflicts led to a massive gang war. During the struggle, the Shield of Arrav was broken in half, each of the two main factions claiming a side.
This struggle eventually led to a complete exodus of half the gang's members. The half that left would go on to become the Black Arm Gang, who still fight the Phoenixes today.
King Roald II, the father of today's monarch, King Roald III, issued Proclamation 262, stating that anyone who returned the shield would be paid 1,200 coins (a massive sum of money at the time). Although Roald II hoped that a gang member would sell his partners out, this never happened because the shield had been broken.
During the Shield of Arrav quest, players work to reclaim the Shield from the gangs.
Another battle occurred some time later, in the year 154, when another necromancer attacked the city. Led by the Zamorakian Mahjarrat Lucien, a massive army of undead, consisting primarily of zombies, sieged Varrock. Lucien probably attacked because the Shield of Arrav was broken. The advancing army was defeated and the victory was attributed to the possession of many runestones and a strong military, while in fact it was Nomad who stopped Mahjarrat's forces in order to get necromancer's attention and learn from him. However Nomad had made sure his involvement remained a secret and so it was not publicly known why Lucien was defeated so easily, as he was intelligent enough to recognise Varrock's strength.
The enemy was defeated so quickly that the knowledge of the necromancer's identity was never revealed to much of the public. Only the Temple Knights seem to be aware that it was Lucien, a piece of knowledge they uncovered whilst researching the "Murder Mage" Solus Dellagar. According to the Temple Knight Archives, Solus was present during the battle, although he did not play a particularly large role.
Modern events (169)Edit
- In the current year, 169, Varrock's government used a large amount of money to renovate the "Ghost Town" north of the Gunnarsgrunn, which was actually the remains of an ancient Zarosian fortress, Paddewwa. King Roald III renames the town "Edgeville" because of its proximity to the Wilderness.
- Varrock is protected by stone walls at all sides, except western side, and guarded by guards. The northern gates open automatically and allow people to pass through but low levelled players are advised that north of the wooden gate is the Wilderness. A wilderness wall was added and its role as a barrier against the Wilderness is often the only thing preventing a full-scale invasion of Misthalin, Asgarnia, and beyond, while its political and cultural standings continue to flourish.
- Also yet again the demon Delrith unleashes for a second time which threatens the safety of Varrock. As Wally did a long time ago, an adventurer must defeat this demon and complete Demon Slayer.
- The Varrock Museum is now renovated and expanded because of the quests related to the Digsite to the east of the city.
- Brugsen Bursen opened the Grand Exchange which allows players to trade most tradeable items with money with anyone, anywhere. Varrock's wealth increased during the opening of the Grand Exchange.
- King Roald III ordered the construction of a Beacon Network to warn the kingdom (and Asgarnia) in the case of an attack from Morytania or the Wilderness. This happens in Defender of Varrock.
- The Shield of Arrav was restored by an adventurer who infiltrated either the Black Arm Gang or the Phoenix gang. One half of the legendary shield was returned to Varrock Mueseum.
- Zemouregal finally returned, accompanied by a large army of zombies led by an undead (though self-aware) Arrav. His impending attack was foreseen by an adventurer, who discovered that the attack could only be stopped by letting the descendant of the founder of Varrock, Dimintheis Fitzharmon, use the Shield of Arrav to repel the undead. The attack didn't seem to have a lot of impact on the city, as it was repelled quite easily.
Today, Varrock continues to be one of the world's most important cities and it is considered "The Capital of Gielinor" by players and even Jagex. The southern areas of the city are generally very poor, and organised crime is very powerful; the further south one travels, the less safe it is to walk the streets and the less honest businesses one will find. The city's wealthiest live in the north-west section, where they do not have to see the poorer areas of the city. The east and north edges are dominated by vast walls and fortifications, although there has been no real threat to Varrock since the Barbarian invasions and Zamouregal's resurgence. Tramps and beggar are found in the south asking for money. Varrock and Misthalin are becoming increasingly strong, wealthy, and modern, although some believe its government has become somewhat corrupt. King Roald III, the city's ruler, has begun to employ advisors, whom some believe he relies too heavily upon. Despite this, he is popular amongst the majority of Varrockians. Despite common belief, King Roald is, in fact, the third King of that name; King Roald II having ruled immediately before the present king, and the first King Roald having ruled before him; it would appear that he started the custom of naming first-born children in the royal line after their fathers.