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Knights of the Silver Hand

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AllianceKnights of the Silver Hand
Silver Hand Fist.jpg
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DwarfDwarf Dwarf

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Active but diminished; many Silver Hand paladins joined Tirion Fordring's Argent Crusade

Tabard

Tabard of the Lightbringer.jpg

The Knights of the Silver Hand (a.k.a. Order of the Knights of the Silver Hand, Order of the Silver Hand, or simply the Silver Hand) was the order of paladins created after the First War by Uther the Lightbringer and Archbishop Alonsus Faol.

Years after its decimation by the corrupted Prince Arthas during the Third War, the order in Lordaeron was then reformed by Tirion Fordring, who later merged it with the Argent Dawn to form the Argent Crusade in order to take the fight against the Lich King to Northrend.[1]

Despite this, human and dwarf paladins from Stormwind and Ironforge are still referred to as Knights of the Silver Hand, meaning the order is still active within the Alliance.[2][3]

Contents

History

Foundation and the Second War

Alonsus Chapel in Stratholme, before the Third War.

The Holy Order of Northshire Clerics, led by Archbishop Alonsus Faol, was devastated during the First War. Seeking to create an order that would suffer less attrition in battle, Faol recruited noble knights (to train in the ways of the Light) and members of the priesthood (to train in martial combat). In Alonsus Chapel in Stratholme, Uther the Lightbringer was appointed the first of the paladins. He was followed by Saidan Dathrohan, Tirion Fordring and Turalyon (candidates recommended by Alonsus Faol himself)[4] as well as Gavinrad the Dire (a candidate proposed by Lord Anduin Lothar).[5] The Order of the Silver Hand was thus born.

The Silver Hand bastion in Stratholme.

The paladins were instrumental in winning the war, and the sight of them wielding their mighty warhammers and holy powers gave others inspiration on the battlefield and the home front.[6] Uther and his paladins were truly a sight to behold. Even some of the Alliance's greatest knights and warriors were in awe when they saw them smashing orcs down while healing fallen allies at the same time.[7] Uther was the first paladin known to have manifested his powers on the battlefield[8] and was given the title of "the Lightbringer" by Turalyon. Turalyon himself did not master his powers until after Lothar's death during the Assault on Blackrock Spire, but once he did the orcish army cowered from his blinding light (which shone "brighter than the brightest day").

After the war, the Order of the Silver Hand began training new paladins in Stormwind and Ironforge.[9] Arthas Menethil, Prince of Lordaeron, was sworn into the order in a ceremony performed in Stormwind's Cathedral of Light.[10]

Several years later, Tirion Fordring's life was saved by the orc Eitrigg. When Eitrigg was later captured by the Alliance, Tirion felt he owed a debt of honor and fought to rescue him. For assaulting Alliance soldiers, Tirion was excommunicated from the Silver Hand and exiled from his lands. His son, Taelan, later joined the Silver Hand.[11]

The Scourge of Lordaeron

Alonsus Chapel in Stratholme, after the Third War.

The appearance of the plague of undeath nearly marked the end of the Order of the Silver Hand. The paladins entered a dark period when one of their own, Prince Arthas, turned his back on the order. When Uther refused to follow Arthas' command to kill the infected population of Stratholme before they could die and be reborn as undead, Arthas suspended his paladins from service.[12] Arthas later lost his soul to the cursed runeblade Frostmourne and became a death knight in the service of the Lich King.[13] Returning to Lordaeron, Arthas killed several notable paladins, including Gavinrad the Dire and Uther Lightbringer.[14]

After the Third War

The Scarlet Bastion in Stratholme.

The paladins who remained in Lordaeron continued to fight against the Scourge. Under the lead of Lord Commander Saidan Dathrohan and Highlord Alexandros Mograine, who wielded the Ashbringer, the paladins fought the undead throughout the Plaguelands. From their base at Hearthglen, they were able to gain some victories, but they weren't able to achieve their goal: the complete destruction of the Scourge.

Worried about the Forsaken entrenching themselves in the Ruins of Lordaeron, the paladins established a base in what would later be known as the Scarlet Monastery in Tirisfal Glades. They also made an alliance with Lord Valdelmar of Tyr's Hand for mutual assistance. However, during an attack on Stratholme, Lord Commander Saidan Dathrohan was killed and his corpse possessed by the dreadlord Balnazzar as a fleshly costume. Balnazzar started slowly working against the order's objectives from the inside. Fearing that the Ashbringer might destroy the Forsaken before his plans could come to fruition, Varimathras had Balnazzar arrange Alexandros's death (by manipulating his son, Renault, into killing him).[15]

The possessed Saidan Dathrohan then reorganized what remained of the Silver Hand in Lordaeron into the Scarlet Crusade. These paladins strove fanatically to destroy evil, without any regards to the means used, and despised all non-human races. Other paladins, disgusted with the Scarlet Crusaders' zealotry, formed the Argent Dawn, which took a less extreme approach and accepted members from all of Azeroth's races into their ranks.[16]

World of Warcraft

WoW Icon 16x16.png This section concerns content exclusive to World of Warcraft.

Though the paladins of Stormwind and Ironforge were referred to as Knights of the Silver Hand, the order had no presence in Lordaeron until Tirion Fordring came out of exile. When his son Taelan was killed for trying to leave the Scarlet Crusade, Tirion vowed to create a new order, dedicated to extinguishing the evils of the world.[17]

  • "The death of my son at the hands of these monsters will not pass without incident. Take solace in knowing that the Order is reborn. I now take my place as Highlord of the new Order of the Silver Hand."

Wrath of the Lich King

WotLK This section concerns content exclusive to Wrath of the Lich King.

Tirion Fordring wielding Ashbringer.

After the Battle for Light's Hope Chapel, Tirion called for a union between the Argent Dawn and the Order of the Silver Hand.[1] Together they formed the Argent Crusade, which sailed to Northrend and fought to end the reign of the Lich King. Along with the Knights of the Ebon Blade, they were instrumental in Arthas's ultimate defeat (with Tirion himself using the Ashbringer to sunder Frostmourne).[18]

Cataclysm

Cataclysm This section concerns content exclusive to Cataclysm.

Paladin trainers in the kingdoms of Stormwind and Khaz Modan remain part of an Order of the Silver Hand that did not merge with the Argent Crusade.

A human paladin, Brother Sammuel, invites a new human paladin into the Order of the Silver Hand:

  • "But until then, be patient... Knight of the Silver Hand."[2]

The dwarven paladin, Bromos Grummner, invites a new dwarf paladin into the Order of the Silver Hand:

  • "You're a Knight of the Silver Hand now, be ready to play the part."[3]

Symbolism

The Order of the Silver Hand took its name and symbol from the legend of Tyr. A paragon of order and justice, Tyr sacrificed his right hand in a fight against an unfathomable evil. Although it was within his power to fix his hand after the fighting had ended, the hero instead chose to replace it with a closed fist made of the purest silver. In this way, he impressed upon those who followed him that true order and justice can only be accomplished through personal sacrifice.[19]

Items

Members

Some of the most notable members of the Silver Hand include:

Name Title Role Affiliation Status
IconSmall HalfElf Male.gif Arator the Redeemer Son of Turalyon and Alleria Honor Hold Alive
IconSmall Human Male.gif Saidan Dathrohan Grand Crusader Leader of the Scarlet Crusade (possessed by Balnazzar) Scarlet Crusade (formerly Lordaeron) Deceased
IconSmall Bolvar.gif Bolvar Fordragon Highlord Jailer of the Damned (formerly Regent of Stormwind) Scourge (formerly Stormwind) Undead
IconSmall Human Male.gif Taelan Fordring Highlord Highlord of the Scarlet Crusade Scarlet Crusade (formerly Lordaeron) Deceased
IconSmall Tirion.gif Tirion Fordring Highlord Highlord of the Argent Crusade Argent Crusade (formerly Lordaeron) Alive
IconSmall Human Male.gif Gavinrad the Dire Guarded the remains of Kel'Thuzad in Andorhal Kingdom of Stormwind Deceased
IconSmall Dwarf Male.gif Valgar Highforge Head paladin trainer in the Hall of Mysteries Kingdom of Ironforge Alive
IconSmall Human Male.gif Morgan Ladimore Haunts Raven Hill as Mor'Ladim (formerly a follower of Uther) None (formerly Stormwind) Undead
IconSmall Jorad.gif Jorad Mace Companion of Tyrigosa (formerly a mercenary) None (formerly Lordaeron) Alive
IconSmall Arthas.gif Arthas Menethil King Lich King of the Scourge (formerly Prince of Lordaeron) Scourge (formerly Lordaeron) Deceased
IconSmall Mograine.gif Alexandros Mograine the Ashbringer Death Knight of Naxxramas (formerly the Ashbringer) Scourge (formerly Lordaeron) Deceased
IconSmall Human Male.gif Aurius Rivendare Death Knight of Stratholme (formerly Defender of Alonsus Chapel) Scourge (formerly Lordaeron) Undead
IconSmall Human Male.gif Grayson Shadowbreaker Lord Head paladin trainer in the Cathedral of Light Kingdom of Stormwind Alive
IconSmall Human Male.gif Thomas Thomson Sir The Headless Horseman (formerly a Scarlet Crusader) None (formerly Scarlet Crusade) Undead
IconSmall Turalyon.gif Turalyon General Commander of the Alliance Expedition to Draenor Alliance of Lordaeron Missing
IconSmall Uther.gif Uther the Lightbringer Grand Master of the the Silver Hand Alliance of Lordaeron Deceased

For a complete list of Knights of the Silver Hand, see List of Knights of the Silver Hand paladins.

RPG Information

The RPG Icon 16x36.png This section concerns content exclusive to the Warcraft RPG and is considered non-canon.

An epic paladin.
  • Even after the triumph at Mount Hyjal, the paladins remembered Arthas's betrayal and just how close their order and all of Azeroth had come to complete destruction.[20] Many paladins felt responsibility for Arthas, because the Holy Light teaches that every person can strengthen other people. Since they were unable to strengthen Arthas, the entire world suffered. After such an enormous breach of trust, the paladins resolved anew to eliminate all traces of corruption in their ranks.[21]
  • While the Knights of the Silver Hand survived the Scourge, few paladins were left in the order.[22] The remaining knights started hunting Arthas's servants, the undead, with a ruthlessness that frightened some, but they were determined to fix their mistakes.[20]
  • The stalwart paladins of the Silver Hand who traveled to Kalimdor worked to establish a new church there.[20]
  • Humans founded the Knights of the Silver Hand, and though they remained the bulk of its membership, the new order started to accept dwarves into the ranks to replace paladins lost during the Third War (they had previously accepted a few dwarven paladins as far back as the Second War, though it was uncommon). The order was not nearly as active as it once had been, but those belonging to the organization became some of the most active members of the Alliance.[23]
  • In addition to the night elves, many guests and diplomats from elsewhere reside in Darnassus, including Knights of the Silver Hand.[24]
  • Templars see corruption in their homes and many other organizations, including the Knights of the Silver Hand. While the templars see paladins as allies and vice versa, templars feel that the Silver Hand overemphasizes tradition and order over general goodness and the other values of the Light.[25]
  • Verius attempted to infiltrate the Order of the Knights of the Silver Hand after the Third War.[26]
  • Brann believes that blue dragons may be found in the ranks of many mortal orders, including the Knights of the Silver Hand.[27]
  • Forthisal D'Neve is studying with the Knights of the Silver Hand to become a paladin.[28]
  • The Phylactery of Faithfulness, a small box containing religious scripture affixed to a leather cord and tied around the forehead, is commonly used by night elves and members of the Silver Hand.[29]
  • Once indoctrinated, a lightslayer receives missions to combat the Holy Light, particularly the Scarlet Crusade (though Knights of the Silver Hand and ordinary priests and parishioners are also fair game).[30]
  • According to Brann Bronzebeard;
We have the Knights of the Silver Hand on our side, but this is a group that has experienced more hardships than most during these dark days. Once the pinnacle of enlightenment, goodness, purity and light, they are forever shamed that the powerful Lich King who sits upon the frozen throne was one of theirs. They wrack their brains on where they went wrong, why they couldn’t see the streak of evil that obviously lurked inside Arthas. If he were truly a paladin, as they are, then there is no way he would have been corrupted. I think they have rather a too high opinion of the paladins, but I’m not the one to tell them.
Even though paladins are some of our most powerful weapons against the Scourge, with their holy power over undead, the paladins are not what they once were. Some have been driven into obsessive madness, forming the Scarlet Crusade and killing living and undead alike in their eagerness to eradicate the Scourge. Others traveled across the sea with Jaina Proudmoore to help defeat the Burning Legion and now reside on Theramore. They certainly do what they can to destroy undead they discover on Kalimdor, but the Scourge's numbers there are like a thimble of beer compared to the great kegs that are Lordaeron and Northrend. We’ll need the paladins to defeat the Scourge, but they are not up to the task right now, and I don’t know how much longer we can wait.[31]

References