Coat of Arms
A hammer rising above a red mountain, set over a circlet of amber.
"By the Might of the Mountain."
King Madoran Bronzebeard
High Thane Muradin Bronzebeard
Prince Brann Bronzebeard
Ironforge, Dun Morogh
High Thane of Clan Bronzebeard
King of Ironforge (Traditionally)
All of Ironforge Nobility
Kingdom of Ironforge, Khaz Modan
The Bronzebeard Clan is one of the oldest and most prominent dwarven clans in all of Khaz Modan. Following a sweeping and decisive victory during the War of the Three Hammers, the Bronzebeards reigned as the royal family of the Kingdom of Ironforge for centuries. It was not until the petrification of King Magni Bronzebeard and the birth of Prince Dagran Thaurissan II (son of Empress Moira Thaurissan [née Bronzebeard] and the late Emperor Dagran Thaurissan I) that a constitutional crisis occured, sending Ironforge to the brink of civil war. In order to suppress the battle for succession, the leaders of the great clans of Khaz Modan (Bronzebeard, Wildhammer, and Dark Iron) formed a regency government, the Council of Three Hammers, to rule the Kingdom of Ironforge until Prince Dagran comes of age.
Clan Bronzebeard is currently ruled by Muradin Bronzebeard, High Thane of Clan Bronzebeard and younger brother of the late King Magni.
- 1 History
- 1.1 Origins and the War of the Three Hammers
- 1.2 Post-Victory
- 1.3 Reign of King Magni Bronzebeard
- 1.4 Ascension and Family
- 1.5 The First War and the Kidnapping of Princess Moira
- 1.6 The Second War and the Alliance of Lordaeron
- 1.7 The Third War and the Return of Muradin
- 1.8 Reign of the Council of Three Hammers (Regency Government)
- 1.9 The Shattering: Prelude to Cataclysm
- 2 Notable Bronzebeards
Origins and the War of the Three Hammers
Long ago, the stalwart dwarves of Khaz Modan lived together in harmony within their mighty cities. The Bronzebeard clan was but a pebble in the foundation of dwarven society, by historical accounts, and it was not until the leadership of Aegrim Bronzebeard that the clan began to flourish and command respect.
As time went on, dwarven society grew too large within the confines of Ironforge. Meanwhile, the Bronzebeards continued their rise to prominence, eventually currying enough favor to become one of three powerful factions under the mighty High King, Modimus Anvilmar. The Bronzebeard clan, ruled by Thane Madoran Bronzebeard, held close ties to the High King and stood as the traditional defenders of Ironforge. The Wildhammer clan, ruled by Thane Khardros Wildhammer, inhabited the foothills and crags around the base of the mountain and sought to gain more control within the city. The third faction, the Dark Iron clan, was ruled by the Sorcerer-Thane Thaurissan. Ambitious and resentful, the Dark Irons hid within the deepest shadows under the mountain and plotted against both their Bronzebeard and Wildhammer cousins.
For some time, the three ruling clans maintained a tenuous peace, but with the sudden death of High King Anvilmar came a long and bloody civil war for control of the throne that would come to be known as the War of the Three Hammers. After years of destruction and bloodshed, the Bronzebeards, who maintained the largest standing army, emerged victorious and banished the Wildhammer and the Dark Iron from the capital of Ironforge.
Thane Khardros of the Wildhammer clans led his people north, establishing their own kingdom and capital within the mountain of Grim Batol. Sorcerer-Thane Thaurissan of the Dark Iron clans, likewise, led his people south, establishing their own empire within the Redridge Mountains. Humiliated and enraged by their defeat, the Dark Iron clan vowed revenge against the now-rulers of Ironforge.
Years had passed, and prosperity of the empire did little to ease the Dark Irons' bitterness towards their dwarven cousins. After years of plotting and scheming, Thaurissan launched a two-pronged attack against the other dwarven clans. The Thane led his own forces against the Bronzebeard capital Ironforge, while his sorceress wife, Modgud, led forces against the Wildhammer's Grim Batol, in hopes of overwhelming the defenses of Khaz Modan.
The Dark Iron trudged deeply, desperately, into the capitals of their fellow dwarves, and very nearly took both kingdoms for themselves. However, Madoran Bronzebeard ultimately led his clan to a conclusive victory over Thaurissan's rebel army. Thaurissan and his servants fled back to the safety of their city, unaware of the events transpiring at Grim Batol, where Modgud's army would fare no better against Khardros and his Wildhammer warriors.
Striking back, the armies of the Bronzebeard and the Wildhammer marched on the capital of Thaurissan. With defeat nearly upon him, the Sorcerer-Thane Thaurissan attempted to summon an ancient power sleeping beneath the Redridge Mountains. Ragnaros the Firelord, immortal lord of all fire elementals, had been banished by the Titans when the world was young. Now, freed by Thaurissan's call, Ragnaros erupted into being once again. Ragnaros' apocalyptic rebirth into Azeroth shattered the Redridge Mountains and created a raging volcano at the center of the devastation. The volcano, known as Blackrock Mountain, became bordered by the Searing Gorge to the north and the Burning Steppes to the south. Although Thaurissan was killed by the forces he had unleashed, his surviving Dark Iron brethren were ultimately enslaved by Ragnaros and his obedient elementals.
The Bronzebeards have reigned over the Kingdom of Ironforge since their decisive victory during the War of the Three Hammers, over two centuries ago. For the most part, the Bronzebeard royal family has enjoyed a prosperous reign, rekindling friendly relations with the Wildhammer; restoring the great, ancient city of Ironforge; overseeing the construction of the Thandol Span; and forging an alliance with the gnomes of Gnomeregan, among other great accomplishments.
Reign of King Magni Bronzebeard
Ascension and Family
Upon the death of the late King, Prince Magni Bronzebeard inherited the throne to the Kingdom of Ironforge. Supported by his two younger brothers, Prince Muradin Bronzebeard and Prince Brann Bronzebeard, the now-King Magni proved to be a natural leader; strong, effective, and decisive administration that continued the prosperity of the dwarven realm.
Standing by his side was Queen Eimear, a kind and nurturing figure who captured the hearts and minds of their loyal subjects. Together, the royal couple gave birth to a daughter, Princess Moira. Although the King had wished for a son, he loved and raised his daughter unconditionally. Unfortunately, not long after Moira's birth, the Queen was mortally wounded by an attack orchestrated by the Frostmane trolls of Dun Morogh. King Magni, acting on his wife's last wishes to always be there for their daughter, began training Moira in the ways of the warrior in order to prepare her for anything. Over time, this formed a rift between the King and the Princess, as he attempted to force her to be something she was not.
The First War and the Kidnapping of Princess Moira
During the chaotic invasion of the orcish Horde in the Eastern Kingdoms, the dwarves of Khaz Modan mostly kept to themselves, cautiously guarding their borders and lending what aid they could to now-sieged Kingdom of Stormwind.
It was around this time that the Magistrate of Lakeshire sent envoys to Ironforge to request aid against incursions from the Blackrock orcs. Adamant to prove her independence, Princess Moira Bronzebeard volunteered to help and set out toward Lakeshire with twenty-one guardsmen, but as the convoy marched through the Burning Steppes, they were ambushed and captured by Dark Iron dwarves. Princess Moira was brought to Emperor Dagran Thaurissan in Shadowforge City, who intended to use her as a hostage of last resort once war began. Thaurissan believed that King Magni would never consider assaulting Blackrock Mountain if it meant putting the Princess in harm's way.
To his surprise, the Empreror Thaurissan found himself falling in love with Moira; she had a sharp wit and strong will, and was not intimidated in the slightest by her predicament. The two dwarves began to speak at length about their hopes for the future, and Thaurissan confided in Moira that he wanted to free his people from enslavement and was willing to do anything to achieve that goal.
King Magni, upset that Moira was with an arch-enemy of his family, sent a team to kill Emperor Thaurissan and retrieve the presumably ensorcelled Moira back to Ironforge. However, Moira refused to come home and announced that she was pregnant; additionally, the death of her husband has left a terrible, fiery rage within her heart. She would not be heard from for a few years, estranged from her father, who still preferred to believe that she was captured and seduced via magical means rather than contemplate that she had fallen in love and married a Dark Iron of her own free will.
Moira stayed in Shadowforge after her husband's death. Hoping to further Dagran's plans to free the Dark Iron from Ragnaros' tyranny, she spread the news that the Firelord was amassing an army and that Dagran Thaurissan's death only had delayed its formation. She also told of riches and artifacts hidden in his stronghold, the Molten Core. She hoped that this would attract adventurous (or greedy) heroes that would strike at the Firelord and banish him. Her plan succeeded, and soon, powerful champions broke into the Molten Core, destroyed Ragnaros' protective runes and banished him back to the Firelands. The Dark Iron dwarfs celebrated and many pledged themselves to Moira for orchestrating their liberation, as their new Empress.
The Second War and the Alliance of Lordaeron
Following the destruction of the Kingdom of Stormwind by the Orcish Horde during the First War, survivors of the siege fled north, to Lordaeron. It was there that Regent Lord Anduin Lothar, leader of Stormwind's refugees, convinced the leaders of the other human kingdoms (and later the Dwarves and Gnomes of Khaz Modan) to unite against the orcish invasion as the Alliance of Lordaeron.
The Horde initially led two major assaults. The northern offensive marched on Lordaeron, while the southern offensive marched through Khaz Modan, laying siege to and conquering the dwarven kingdoms, as well as the vast natural resources within. Although the gnomes and dwarves of Khaz Modan formed a strong resistance against the invasion, their coalition proved to be a little match for the might of the orcish Horde. Thousands were killed in defense of their homeland.
Forced to retreat behind the mighty walls of their capital cities, Clan Bronzebeard and other leaders mobilized virtually their entire population to take up arms and resist the ongoing siege. In their last stand, the dwarves successfully repelled the assault upon the city of Ironforge with disastrous results for their orcish invaders. By most accounts, for every dwarf that fell, ten orcs were brought down with them. Eventually, the Horde was forced to called off their siege.
Still, despite their crushing losses, the Horde still controlled virtually all of Khaz Modan's rich resources. Their warchief, Orgrim Doomhammer, stationed offensive outposts outside each capital city, forcing the dwarves and the gnomes to remain confined within their walls for the duration of the war. In the meantime, the Horde smiths quickly got to work, and in a matter of years, fully-equipped their armies with vast quantities of new armaments and siege engines.
Meanwhile, in Lordaeron, a meeting of the Council of Seven Nations, composed of the major rulers of Azeroth's human nations, had convened to discuss strategies on how to repel the Horde invaders. It was there that refugees from Khaz Modan arrived with news of their people's dire situation, as well as the Horde's intentions on advancing to the north. The news shocked the human leaders and sparked a sense of urgency to the council. Extensive debate and heated passions were exchanged between world leaders until Turalyon, one of Lordaeron's most famed priests, delivered an impassioned and charismatic speech that would inevitably sway their support in Khaz Modan's favor. That very day, the council voted unanimously to form the Alliance of Lordaeron, a collective of humanity's kingdoms to stand united, at last, to combat the orcish Horde.
For months, the newly-minted Alliance marched to the south, bravely pushing back the Horde's frontlines with no small sacrifice among their own kind. After a series of successful skirmishes, the Wildhammer clans of the Hinterlands were, at last, liberated by the Alliance forces, whom they gladly joined in the offensive against the Horde. With the might of the Alliance military bolstered by the aerial superiority of the Wildhammer gryphon-riders, it was not long that the Horde was forced to retreat back into Khaz Modan proper. It was there that the last of the orcish strongholds in the region were destroyed, and as a result, the dwarves of Ironforge and the gnomes of Gnomeregan, too, were liberated from their capital cities.
Eternally grateful for liberation of their homeland, King Magni Bronzebeard, alongside High Tinker Geblin Mekkatorque of Gnomeregan, eagerly joined the new Alliance, pledging the support of their respective kingdoms to destroy the Horde invaders, once and for all. For the remainder of the war, the dwarves of Khaz Modan fought with great resolve against their former captors, and in the end, their collective might pushed the Alliance into unquestionable victory.
However, despite their successful rallying of the dwarven people, the Bronzebeards were not immune to their own share of tragedy. Near the conclusion of the Second War, King Magni's younger brother, Prince Muradin Bronzebeard, was presumed dead after Prince Arthas Menethil of Lordaeron claimed the cursed runeblade, Frostmourne, a pivotal moment that would eventually lead to Arthas's ascension as the Lich King of the Scourge.
The Third War and the Return of Muradin
During the war against the Lich King in Northrend, it was revealed that Prince Muradin did not perish when Arthas Menethil claimed Frostmourne, but was merely wounded and knocked unconscious. A short time after Arthas left, Muradin awoke. Confused, hurt, and with total amnesia, he wandered out into the snow.
As a matter of coincidence, Muradin was eventually tracked down by a group of Frostborn dwarves, following his trail of blood-soaked snow during an extremely harsh blizzard. Not about to let their new-found cousin freeze to death, the Frostborn took him along with them, and a short time later came under attack by a giant jormungar worm. After slaying the beastly worm single-handedly and saving the dwarves, the Frostborn reveled around Muradin and bestowed to him the name "Yorg Stormheart," after a legendary Frostborn warrior. Over time, Muradin/"Yorg" ascended to become King of the Frostborn and brought his people into the Alliance, who began to mobilize in the war against the Lich King.
As the war continues, Muradin is eventually reunited with his brothers, King Magni and Prince Brann, and recounts to them his lost memories. Thereafter, Muradin parts amicably with the Frostborn dwarves to join the fight to hunt down Arthas, the new Lich King.
Reign of the Council of Three Hammers (Regency Government)
The Shattering: Prelude to Cataclysm
To quell an elemental invasion within Ironforge, King Magni Bronzebeard attempted to perform a ritual in Old Ironforge, accidentally causing him to become petrified in a block of solid diamond.
In the wake of King Magni's petrification, Moira returned to Ironforge with her infant son, Dagran Thaurissan II, to claim the throne for herself and (later) the infant prince. Backed by the might of the Dark Iron clans, Moira the Queen-Regent ruled Ironforge arrogantly and with an iron fist. Among other authoritarian decrees, she had the gryphons moved out of the city, ordered the Deeprun Tram closed, and effectively held all of Ironforge hostage, including Prince Anduin Wrynn, who arrived on an official state visit with the late King, shortly before his passing.
Now trapped within the capital, Prince Anduin developed a routine to pass the time, eventually growing close with a member of the Bronzebeard's elite guard, Aerin Stonehand. At one point, Aerin recounted to the young prince the details of Moira's past, including her disappearance and marriage to the evil Emperor of the Dark Iron.
Upon receiving an "invitation" (order) to a private dinner with the Queen-Regent, Anduin devised a plan to subtly spur Moira into dropping her guard and provoking an honest reaction from her, hoping to learn her true motives. During this dinner, Moira revealed that she was never ensorcelled by her late husband, as was widely-rumored, but rather fell in love with him because he respected her, unlike the late King who desired a son and believed that a woman was not fit to rule. While Anduin privately agreed that she had been wronged, the young prince quickly realized that Moira had not turned such adversity into strength, but rather allowed her resentment of her father to eat away at her and lead her to become a spiteful ruler.
After Prince Anduin managed to escape from Ironforge, he recounted to his father, King Varian Wyrnn, the coup that had been orchestrated by Moira and her Dark Iron bannermen, as well as his lengthy hostage within the capital. Enraged by the news, King Varian and eighteen SI:7 operatives embarked on a mission to liberate Ironforge and assassinate the authoritarian Queen-Regent.
When King Varian was about to execute Moira, Prince Anduin — who had rushed back to Ironforge — convinced his father that it would be better to guide her to become a better leader instead. Despite the Queen-Regent being a verified tyrant who held the entire capital hostage, she was still the legitimate heir to the throne. Killing her, they feared, would only put the succession of the Kingdom of Ironforge into question, thus potentially leading to another bloody civil war rivalling even the likes of the War of the Three Hammers. Conversely, if she lived, there was a possibility that, through her and her son, all dwarven clans could finally unite in harmony.
Conflicted, King Varian hesitantly agreed to spare Moira's life, but stipulated that if Moira was to be a true leader and unite the dwarves, then she would have to earn her crown by earning her people's respect. In order to take into account the opinions of all dwarven clans, King Varian called for the formation of the Council of Three Hammers, a provisional executive council consisting of Queen-Regent Moira of the Dark Iron, High Thane Muradin of the Bronzebeards, and High Thane Falstad of the Wildhammer. Shortly afterwards, the Council established the Assembly of Three Hammers to rule as Khaz Modan's provisional legislative government.
After successfully clinging to power for several generations, the Bronzebeard clan remains large and powerful.
Below is an inexhaustive list of notable Bronzebeards (primarily, their royal line of descent):
- Thane Aegrim Bronzebeard, ancient Thane of Clan Bronzebeard credited with elevating the family to a position of prominence and respect.
- King Madoran Bronzebeard, King of Khaz Modan, High Thane of Clan Bronzebeard and Ironforge.
- King Magni Bronzebeard, King of Ironforge, High Thane of Clan Bronzebeard and Ironforge. Successor and eldest son of King Madoran Bronzebeard.
- High Thane Muradin Bronzebeard, High Thane of Clan Bronzebeard, Bronzebeard Representative for the Council of Three Hammers. Successor and middle brother of King Magni Bronzebeard.
- Prince Brann Bronzebeard, Leader of the Explorer's League, Geographer, Archaeologist, and Historian. Youngest brother of King Magni Bronzebeard.
- Moira Thaurissan (née Bronzebeard), Queen-Regent of the Dark Iron, Dark Iron Representative for the Council of Three Hammers. Sole daughter of King Magni Bronzebeard.
- Prince Dagran Thaurissan II, Heir-Presumptive to the Kingdom of Ironforge and the Empire of Shadowforge. Infant son of Queen-Regent Moira Thaurissan and Emperor Dagran Thaurissan I.