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Commonly known as The City of the White Wolf, is second only in size and influence to the Empire's capital Altdorf. The city stands upon a sheer pinnacle of rock, five hundred feet high, and is reachable only by four highways that run along colossal viaducts. Middenheim may seem invulnerable, but the rock it stands upon is riddled with ancient tunnels, Dwarven and otherwise, that are home to things best not thought about too closely.
Religion and Founding
Unlike most of the Empire in Middenheim the worship of Ulric overshadows that of Sigmar; Ar-Ulric the high priest is an Imperial Elector and wields tremendous temporal as well as spiritual power. Ulric’s insistence upon hand-to-hand combat, and his hatred of gunpowder weapons, is a strong influence on the city’s armies.
The rock the city stands upon, called the Ulricsberg or the Faustschlag ("fist strike"), is said to have been stuck by the hand of Ulric, leaving a flat top a mile across. On this site the god intended a great city to be built; with a temple where his holy fires would forever burn and that his followers would revere above all other places. It was Artur, chief of the Teutogen tribe, who discovered the rock and founded the city. Roughly a century later the High Priest of Ulric received a vision from his god that inspired him to found a temple upon the Ulricsberg.
Ulric’s temple is a vast castle, dominating the city. The holy fire that burns before the great altar is said to do no harm to those who are pure – something that was proven true by Magnus the Pious when Ar-Ulric Kriestov accused him of heresy, and the saviour of The Empire stepped into the flames and emerged untouched. The Knights of the White Wolf, templars of Ulric, are based in the city and utterly dedicated to its defence.
Rulers and History
The city is ruled by Boris Todbringer, Elector Count of Middenland, a descendant of Gunthar von Bildhofen, brother of Magnus the Pious. Gunther should by rights have become Emperor after his brother’s death, but a disagreement with the Grand Theogonist cost him the throne. Boris himself sought to become Emperor, but accepted the accession of Karl-Franz and is now one of his most loyal supporters. Boris is protected by the Knights Panther, a secular order of knights dedicated to the eradication of mutants. The knights, together with their associated sergeants and men-at-arms, are a key part of Middenheim’s army.
The city always houses a contingent of Kislevite mercenaries – these are ‘loaned’ by the Tzarina in exchange for a unit of Knights Panther. Middenheim is a cosmopolitan place, with a sizable population of Dwarfs, many Halfling and even a few Elves.
One of Middenheim’s most celebrated sons was Count Mandred, called the Skaven Slayer. In 1118 the Black Plague was in full swing; Middenheim had become one of the few remaining bastions of Imperial civilization in a land overrun by Skaven. The city was under siege by the rat men and the situation appeared hopeless. However, Mandred co-ordinated an amazing defence of both the city and the tunnels beneath it. The months passed, and the Skaven horde eventually ran out of food, forcing them to withdraw.
In 1122 Mandred rallied enough of the nobility to proclaim a crusade against the Skaven. In a series of great battles the Skaven were driven back below ground. The Empire was saved, and Mandred the Skaven Slayer was crowned Emperor. Mandred rebuilt the shattered infrastructure of his nation during the glorious twenty-five years of his rule; tragically though he died to the cowardly poisons of an assassin, the last act of spite from the broken and bitter rat men.
In the present, Middenheim was under siege by the dread chaos lord Archaon, 6th Everchosen of the four gods during the momentous occasion known as the Storm of Chaos. Luckily, the renowned Valten, rumored to be the reincarnation of the imperial god Sigmar, was present to do battle alongside the defenders and hopefully defeat Archaon. Unfortunately, Valten was mortally wounded and despite Archaon's defeat by the Orc warlord Grimgor Ironhide and later retreat, he died. Since the events of the war, Middenheim has been rebuilding, and it remains to be seen how the city will be affected in the future.
With the cities size prescribed by geography burial space is at a premium and only the wealthy can afford proper interment. The fate of the bodies of the common people is to be tossed off the Cliff of Sighs into the forest below.
Because of the ever present threat of mutants and Skaven all drains leading into the sewer system are required to be locked. Chaos is not tolerated in The City of the White Wolf and mutants are commonly executed upon revelation of their taint. Some parents abandon their obviously tainted offspring into the nearby Drakwald forest, leading to a rise in the number of beastmen present there.
- Ashes of Middenheim The official source book for the city of Middenheim for Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay, from Black Industries.