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Whiterun is a city in central Skyrim, and the capital of the Whiterun Hold. It is divided into three districts: the Plains District, used as a marketplace where all the merchants, stalls and inns are located; the Wind District, used as a residential area; and the Cloud District, where the palace of Dragonsreach is located. The Gildergreen tree, grown from a sapling from the legendary Eldergleam, is an ancient tree located in the city, worshipped by followers of Kynareth.
The mountain on which the city was built was discovered by members of the Five Hundred Companions of Ysgramor, who discovered the Skyforge, an abandoned forge with the ability to smelt superior Skyforge Steel. The local elves feared the Skyforge as a relic of the gods. The Companions built the mead hall of Jorrvaskr beside the Skyforge, founding the settlement. This group became the Companions, a famous band of mercenaries.
The area used to be referred to as the "Imperial City of Skyrim", before it underwent several acts of chaos, including a dynastic feud, attacks by Hörme bandits and frost trolls, and a series of annihilating winters of alternating floods, droughts, and fires.
The young Barenziah escaped to here for a week with a young lover during her return to Mournhold. Whiterun was once home to a gladiatorial team known as the Devastators.[OOG 1] During the late Third Era, a self-proclaimed priestess of Lorkhan, Jsashe the Witch-Queen, controlled the county and the local witches' coven.
In 4E 201, the city was ruled by Jarl Balgruuf the Greater and played a major role in the Dovahkiin's efforts to defeat Alduin. Whiterun was also the site of a major battle in Skyrim's Civil War, in which Stormcloak forces attacked the city, which was defended by the city guard reinforced by Imperial soldiers. Vignar Gray-Mane was backed by the Stormcloaks as a replacement jarl, while the Imperials haltingly supported Balgruuf. The Gildergreen died that same year, but it was restored by Danica Pure-Spring, a priestess of Kynareth.
- ^ The Real Barenziah, Part 1 — Anonymous
- ^ Pocket Guide to the Empire, 3rd Edition: The Throat of the World: Skyrim — Imperial Geographical Society, 3E 432
- ^ Events of Skyrim
Note: the following references are not found in game. They are included to provide a rounder background to this article, but may not reflect established lore.
 See Also
For game-specific information, see: