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Neverwinter, also known as the City of Skilled Hands or the Jewel of the North, was a metropolis sitting on the northwestern Sword Coast of Faerûn. Neverwinter was regarded by many, including the erudite travel writer Volo, as the most cosmopolitan and the most civilized city in all of Faerûn, quite a reputation, considering the breadth and variety of the continent. The city was a member in good standing of the Lords' Alliance and Lord Nasher ensured that the city was well defended before his death, both physically and magically, against attacks or infiltration from Luskan, Neverwinter's warlike rival. Maps of the city, which had a maze of meandering streets, were not distributed, as part of an effort to thwart Luskan spies.[citation needed]


The city of Neverwinter was so named because, even though the town is situated in the cold north of Faerûn, the Neverwinter River that flows through it was heated by fire elementals living under the nearby Mount Hotenow in the Neverwinter Wood. The heat given off from the river creates a permanent warm climate in the immediate area; without the elementals, the river, and subsequently the city's water supply, would freeze over.[citation needed]

The city was originally named "Eiggerstor", which was an Illuskan word. The name "Neverwinter" is the Chondathan translation.[1]



The city was ruled fairly and justly [3] by Lord Nasher Alagondar, an aging, veteran adventurer and devout worshiper of Tyr. As such, although Neverwinter was prosperous, its master-craftsmen making lamps of multi-coloured glass, precision water clocks and exquisite jewelry, its Tyrran faith promoted justice and fairness, with greed being frowned upon.


Although Lord Nasher died during the Spellplague, he gave rise to a royal line that is believed to have ruled until Mount Hotenow erupted, destroying the majority of the city. Thayans and their Ashmadai allies attacked the city in the wake of the eruption, hoping to cause enough deaths to fuel a Dread Ring but their plans were foiled with the help of adventurers and agents of Netheril. Due to the help given by the Netherese, the shadovar attempted a power grab in the city but were driven out when Herzgo Alegni was defeated in combat by Artemis Entreri and Dahlia Sin'felle, which inspired a revolt against Herzgo's netherese 'Shadow Guard'. Two decades after the city's destruction however, Dagult Neverember, Open Lord of Waterdeep, seeing an opportunity to add to his financial empire, would hire artisans and carpenters to help rebuild the city and mercenaries to protect it from monsters; he would eventually create the title of Lord Protector of Neverwinter, held by Neverember himself. However, it is questioned whether Dagult is the rightful ruler, as many factions vie for Neverwinter and the citizens are divided in loyalties.[4]


Neverwinter afternoon

Neverwinter in the afternoon

Neverwinter night

Neverwinter at dusk

In addition to having an unnaturally warm climate, Neverwinter is a picturesque city and boasts such sights as its three spectacular, intricately carved bridges: the Dolphin, the Winged Wyvern and the Sleeping Dragon. Under these, the waters of the Neverwinter River cascade over small, gentle waterfalls as they course into the city's bustling harbour. Neverwinter's magnificent gardens (the phrase "The City of Skilled Hands" refers to Neverwinter's accomplished gardeners) ensure the warm winters are colourful and the summers are rich with fresh fruit. The city is replete with beautiful and ingeniously designed buildings, many of which are famous in their own right, such as The House of Knowledge, and Neverwinter's tall and many-windowed temple of Oghma. In addition, the reputations of such unique taverns as the Moonstone Mask and The Fallen Tower reach far beyond the Neverwinter's walls and further add to the city's distinction.


Neverwinter location

Map of Neverwinter on the Sword Coast North.

Neverwinter is one of the cities on the trade route, The High Road.


The first settlement in the Savage Frontier was an elven city known as Illefarn. Illefarn became a bustling nation after the time of the Crown Wars. Illefarn lasted long enough to see the founding of Gauntlgrym and the harnessing of Maegera the Inferno beneath its lands. Eventually, Illefarn was divided into three nations, of which Iliyanbruen was the most prominent.[citation needed]

Iliyanbruen frequently fought with the city of Illusk, which was a legacy of the Netherese. The Netherese city of Xinlenal crashed in Iliyanbruen territories where it would remain hidden for thousands of years. Iliyanbruen was weakened by Orc invasions, which paved the way for Eigersstor, the first multi-racial settlement in the area, which would later be called Neverwinter.[5]

Neverwinter became a center of civilization, peace and culture and was widely viewed as a marvel by visitors. This trend lasted, seemingly unbroken since its founding (with the exception of a couple of orc hordes, the violent debacle following the Orcgates Affair and the assassination attempts against the sage Rahalaglingalade), until 1372 DR when a disease known as the Wailing Death laid low most of the city's inhabitants.[citation needed]

Neverwinter in gamesEdit

Many years ago, the forces of Neverwinter were involved in a battle with the King of Shadows. None of the men sent into combat survived the battle, although the garrison at Fort Locke survived a demonic onslaught.[6]

In 1372 DR the city succumbed to the Wailing Death, a disease that resisted magical healing and killed much of the population of the city. The cure was eventually found but the casualties by that time were catastrophic.[7] [8]

It was soon discovered that the Wailing Death was merely the precursor of war between Neverwinter and its enemy, the city of Luskan. Although it was the Sarrukh Queen Morag who sponsored the war, rather than the Host Tower of the Arcane, the fighting (which ended in a stalemate, thanks to a plucky adventurer known only as the Hero of Neverwinter) soured the relationship between the two cities even more.[8]

Despite this, a shaky relationship between Neverwinter and Luskan was reestablished until an upstart Host Tower mage named Black Garius attempted to raise an undead army to conquer Neverwinter, ostensibly in the name of the King of Shadows. Again, an adventurer put an end to the plans of Black Garius and defeated the King of Shadows once and for all.[6]

Unfortunately the conflict, which came to be known as the Shadow War, left the economy of the Sword Coast North in tatters, and its security was in doubt due to the deaths of so many Greycloaks during the fighting. This made it a great opportunity for an enterprising Samarachan mercantile house led by a woman named Sa'Sani. Under her leadership, and with the assistance of a group of adventurers, the Neverwinter region's economy was brought back to health by the end of the Year of Lightning Storms.[9]


Main article: New Neverwinter

Neverwinter and other cities north of Waterdeep fared poorly in the years following the Spellplague, and by the Year of the Ageless One both it and Luskan were in utter ruins.[10]

Minor earthquakes had troubled Neverwinter for months, eventually resulting in an eruption from Mount Hotenow with mounds of lava and superheated ash falling down on the city. Half of the city's population died in a heartbeat, with many great buildings razed. A great rift known as the Chasm ripped apart the Earth of the city and strange zombies of ash haunted the ruins. Yet after the destruction, many who had fled upon the minor earthquakes returned, bringing looters and thieves with them. The people began to rebuild and eventually, arriving with a host of mercenaries from Mintarn, Dagult Neverember arrived and styled himself the Lord Protector of Neverwinter.[11]


Neverwinter has a standing army of 400 archers and spearmen. It is their job to guard the city walls and the docks and patrol the High Road from Port Llast to Leilon 100 miles south of the city. During peacetime, 60 of these soldiers are assigned to the city watch, 60 are on leave for R&R and 60 are busy retraining. If the city's walls are threatened by orcs or Luskan the defenders catapult a veritable hail of explosive missiles down on the attackers. Both missiles and the specially designed catapults were devised by the best 'skilled hands' of the city's namesake. In desperate situations, Lord Nasher can call upon the wizards of the Order of the Many-Starred Cloak.[citation needed]


The city of Neverwinter serves as the origin of the phrase "By the clocks of Neverwinter", used when one is solemnly swearing, a reference to the precision of its timepieces.[citation needed]




Video gamesEdit


Neverwinter Saga:


  1. 1.0 1.1 Reynolds, Forbeck, Jacobs, Boyd (March 2003). Races of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 93. ISBN 0-7869-2875-1.
  2. R.A. Salvatore (October 2011). Neverwinter. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 146. ISBN 0-7869-5842-1.
  3. slade (April 1996). The North: Guide to the Savage Frontier. (TSR, Inc), pp. pages = Cannot cite pages from this boxed set. Instead, see {{Cite book/The North: Guide to the Savage Frontier}} for a list of products inside the boxed set and cite pages from a product.. ISBN 0-7869-0391-0.
  4. Matt Sernett, Erik Scott de Bie, Ari Marmell (2011). Neverwinter Campaign Setting. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 138. ISBN 0-7869-5814-6.
  5. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 61. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Obsidian Entertainment (2006). Chris AvelloneFerret Baudoin, J.E. Sawyer. Neverwinter Nights 2Atari.
  7. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 153. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  8. 8.0 8.1 BioWare (2002). Trent OsterBrent Knowles, James Ohlen. Neverwinter NightsAtari.
  9. Obsidian Entertainment (2008). Tony Evans. Neverwinter Nights 2: Storm of ZehirAtari.
  10. Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 84. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  11. Matt Sernett, Erik Scott de Bie, Ari Marmell (2011). Neverwinter Campaign Setting. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 8. ISBN 0-7869-5814-6.

Further readingEdit

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