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Ordulin (pronounced: /ɔːrˈdjlɪnore-DYOO-lin[5]) was the former capital of Sembia but was destroyed in a planar rift summoned by Elyril Hraven, one of Shar's followers.[6] There was a constant ominous cloud above the city, along with a lone earthmote with a Shadovar citadel resting atop it.[2]


Ordulin and its environs were the northernmost region of Sembia until Featherdale was conquered. Although logging and other factors had caused the woods to recede, the land was still highly fertile and worked fields surrounded the city, supplying food to the rest of Sembia.


Nominally, Ordulin was governed by the Council of Sembia, the democratically elected assembly of merchants who ruled over the entire nation. Practically, the city was ruled by the rest of the city's merchants, who were motivated entirely by profit.


As the capital of a merchant nation, Ordulin did a lot of trade. Around fifty thousand foreign and domestic merchants came to Ordulin during the summer trading season[4] and the city played host to the headquarters of many prominent merchant costers. Ordulin was also home to the Sembian mint.


Ordulin's military was known simply as the Guard and, as their name suggests, they were guardsmen first and foremost. However, every one of the two thousand members of the Guard was a well-trained and well armed warrior equipped with plate mail, halberds, swords, maces and daggers and so were perfectly capable of defending the city from external threats.[4]

The Guard were commanded by Captain Raithspur, who boasted a well-earned reputation for power and prowess. They were based out of a tower in the centre of the city.[4]

The Sembian mint was a fortress within the city, located next door to the Tower of the Guard, protected by powerful wards to prevent both unauthorised entry and scrying, as well as golems and patrols of particularly inventive abjurer craftsmen. It was said that no thief had ever penetrated the mint and lived to tell the tale.[7]


The land that Ordulin later sat on was one of the first human settlements in the interior Heartlands. Then known as Moondale and considered part of the Dalelands, it was founded just after the raising of the Standing Stone. By 700 DR Moondale was a farming settlement of cleared land. In 913 DR, Rauthauvyr "the Raven" forced the Elven Court to allow him to build a road through their territory[8], with Moondale as it's southern terminus.[9] As Rauthauvyr's nation of Sembia grew to the south, trade became more and more important. Many dalesmen of Moondale married into southern merchant families and they began earnestly logging southern Cormanthor. Around 1067 DR, the nation of Sembia peacefully annexed Moondale and renamed it Ordulin.[10] Ordulin was chosen as Sembia's capital as it was free of the interference of the older Sembian cites.[11]

On Nightal 1 1374 DR, a sharran priestess named Elyril Hraven summoned a planar rift into the Plane of Shadow, and a nexus from that plane, called the Adumbral Calyx, poured out of the rift, completely annihilating the city. Kesson Rel then emerged from the nexus and proceeded to animate the dead, incorporating the resulting monsters into his army. All that was left of the city was a dangerous whirlpool of uncontrollable shadowstuff.

The goddess Shar had ordered this be done in order to allow her to destroy Toril but the god Mask had delayed her by trapping her within the 'Ordulin Maelstrom'. She raged against the prison that was the Maelstrom, slowly opening a hole into the void that would eventually destroy the planet, surrounded by ghostly undead and visited only by Rivalen Tanthul.

A map of Ordulin in 1358 DR.

In 1484 DR, Vasen Cale, channeling the power of Amaunator and Lathander; and Drasek Riven, wielding the divinity of Mask, closed the hole at the centre of the Maelstrom. Then, the floating Netherese city of Sakkors was deliberately crashed into Ordulin by Magadon Kest in order to destroy the Maelstrom itself.[12]


Due to a treaty signed after a major military defeat, the city paid at least 300,000 gp worth of gems to Archendale every year.[13]




  1. Ed Greenwood (August 1992). “The Everwinking Eye: Words To The Wise”. In Jean Rabe ed. Polyhedron #74 (TSR, Inc.), p. 14–15.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. Edited by Jennifer Clarke Wilkes, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 177. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  3. Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 189–190. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 Jeff Grubb and Ed Greenwood (1990). Forgotten Realms Adventures. (TSR, Inc), p. 96. ISBN 0-8803-8828-5.
  5. Jeff Grubb, Ed Greenwood and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (Cyclopedia of the Realms). (TSR, Inc), p. 67. ISBN 0-8803-8472-7.
  6. Paul S. Kemp (August 2007). Shadowstorm. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 35. ISBN 978-0-7869-4304-3.
  7. Jeff Grubb and Ed Greenwood (1990). Forgotten Realms Adventures. (TSR, Inc), pp. 96–97. ISBN 0-8803-8828-5.
  8. Brian R. James, Ed Greenwood (September 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. Edited by Kim Mohan, Penny Williams. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 109. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  9. Jeff Grubb, Ed Greenwood and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (Cyclopedia of the Realms). (TSR, Inc), p. 74. ISBN 0-8803-8472-7.
  10. Richard Baker (1993). The Dalelands. (TSR, Inc), p. 59. ISBN 978-1560766674.
  11. Jeff Grubb and Ed Greenwood (1990). Forgotten Realms Adventures. (TSR, Inc), p. 97. ISBN 0-8803-8828-5.
  12. Paul S. Kemp (March 2014). The Godborn (MMP). (Wizards of the Coast), chap. ?. ISBN 078696541X.
  13. Ed Greenwood (January 1996). Volo's Guide to the Dalelands. (TSR, Inc), p. 9. ISBN 0-7869-0406-2.