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Shurima

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Shurima capital

Shuriman Capital, Shurima
(by Riot Artist Patrick Faulwetter)

The Shurima Desert (commonly known as Shurima) is an arid territory in the southern half of the continent. Many men have gone mad beneath the glare of the Shurima sun. It is also the location of the newly resurrected Shuriman Empire, a vast civilization that bloomed millennia ago. It shares borders with Demacia and Noxus.

Ancient beings called Ascendants originate from this area.


Lore

Shurima logo
Shurima Crest icon

A thousand years ago, the glorious empire of Shurima shone like a second sun across the desert. After a flawed Ascension ritual, the gleaming capital city was reduced to ruins.

But an oft-repeated legend stirs in the desert of Shurima. The swirling sands carry rumors of the ancient emperor AzirSquare.png Azir, somehow returned.[1]

Locations

Shurima map

Map of Shurima (The Capital at its center)

There are currently 11 known locations in Shurima.

The Capital

An oasis in the desert, it fell to ruins after XerathSquare.png Xerath's flawed Ascension. It has risen once again with the resurrection of Shurima's long lost emperor, AzirSquare.png Azir. In its prime, it was the center of Shuriman society. Because of its immense importance as the center of trade and culture of the empire, many cultural, educational centers and markets bringing goods from all over the Empire sprung up. It also housed special burial grounds for the most influential of its citizens, such as The Tomb of the Emperors. The city is divided by ringed districts and city levels. The cities most wealthiest citizens lived in the top rings of the city, while middle and lower classes (with slaves) lived mostly in settlements built on the rocky cliff sides of the outer and lower rings. Cities Imperial Palace, Grand Temple and Oasis of the Dawn are located at the center of the city. The most important road in the city was The Emperor’s Way. The city was built around the ancient Shurima's Legacy Sun Disc that floats above The Circle of Ascension and the city itself. The city also had the most advance irrigation system of its time, seemingly unsurpassed until modern times. Floating gardens decorated with palms and other flora protected its many terraces from the burning sun.

Circle of Ascension

Located at the very center of the city, above the Grand Temple, Oasis of the Dawn and the Imperial Place, The Circle of Ascension is the main focal point from which most the privileged beings of Shurima's past harnessed the powers of the Shurima's Legacy Sun Disc and became Ascendant beings. It was also the center location of Ancient Shurima's destruction and its modern rise from the grave. The circle is accessible with the Stairs of Ascension and The Emperor’s Way, the most important road within the city.

Tomb of the Emperors

Deep in the capital city lies the Tomb of the Emperors. For the last millennium it has acted as the makeshift prison of XerathSquare.png Xerath and RenektonSquare.png Renekton. It is guarded by the statue of a huge serpent. When the tomb opened the serpent came to life, impaling CassiopeiaSquare.png Cassiopeia on its fangs, its venom transforming her into a terrifying half-snake creature.[2]

Oasis of the Dawn

"When the sun is at its peak, the pool blends in with the shimmering heat, looking as if its waters run off into infinity."
Infinity Edge item.png Infinity Edge lore

Described as the Mother of Life, the oasis is located near The Tomb of the Emperors. The bloodline of the entire city, it the city's main source of fresh water. The water is fused with unknown magical properties and has immense healing powers. It is said that any edge dipped into this pool will stay sharper and strike truer than any other sword. It has almost all dried up until the newly resurrected AzirSquare.png Azir brought a dying SivirSquare.png Sivir to the now magical pool. The waters' powers healed her fatal wounds. This act of selflessness from Azir made him worthy of ascension which ultimately revived his broken city.[3]

Shurima Wastes

Shurima landscape

The Shuriman Wastes (Shuriman Capital under the sands, before its resurrection)
(by Riot Artist Patrick Faulwetter)

The fallen empire has littered the dunes with ruins. A RammusSquare.png mysterious creature can be found wandering the the desert. SkarnerSquare.png Skarner defends the entrance to a realm deep beneath the Shuriman wastes; what he protects no one knows. Buried tombs also hold ancient secrets; AmumuSquare.png Amumu rose from such a tomb; in another EzrealSquare.png Ezreal claimed an Ascendant artifact of incredible mystical power.

Bel’zhun

A settlement at the edge of Shurima, bordering with the Empire of Noxus.

Sai

Sai is the harsh, southern desert defined by rolling plains of sand, sharp stones and eerie silence. Located between the end of the desert and the Capital, it is for the most part, completely uninhabited besides the Xer'Sai and their queen Rek'SaiSquare.png Rek'Sai, whom has single-handedly claimed vast parts of the desert. Traders and armed caravans will go hundreds of miles out of their way to avoid her territory, though cunning bandits have been known to lure the unwary into her killing grounds. [4]

Culture

Shuriman Crest

Crest of Shurima

The current inhabitants of Shurima's desert are mainly descended from the survivors of the fall of Shurima's empire. The origin of their culture reaches back to AzirSquare.png Azir's time. During those times, slavery was a common thing in the Empire. It was so common that the entire Empire was dependent of slaves as a working force. One of the former slaves, XerathSquare.png Xerath, tried to seek revenge for position, which inadvertently caused the Empires downfall. Ironically, his plan was implemented right after Azir emancipated all slaves in the empire. After the fall of Ancient Shurima, the society has evolved as they eke out an existence in their harsh environment of the desert[5]. Commonly the nomads, such as SivirSquare.png Sivir, practice tomb robbing and mercenary service. The people are also known to produce seers blessed with foresight. MalzaharSquare.png Malzahar was born with such abilities. The currency of Shurima is called securi. [6]

The southern desert is plagued by Xer'Sai, vicious monsters originating from the void. To scout from attacks by Xer'Sai caravans can employ Elujrav'i', or "bell riders". They can also employ "Saih'kharash'i", or "sand walkers". These are poor locals who travels with the caravan, but can quickly be outrun in case of an attack by the Xer'Sai, at which point they serve as unfortunate decoys while their employers escape. [7]

In ancient times the Shurima's Legacy Sun Disc produced heroes called Ascendants in times of direst threat. These beings were merely considered legends AzirSquare.png until recently.[8]

Military

Shurima Army

Shuriman Army (summoned by Azir after Shurima's resurrection)
(by Riot Artist Patrick Faulwetter)

Shurima had a standing army before it fell. There were at least 10,000 elite warriors that guarded the emperor. When AzirSquare.png Azir returned he summoned a vast army at his command. The soldiers, though made in the image of their predecessors, are constructs of sand and are not sentient.[9]

Wildlife

Xer'Sai

Creatures from the Void that plague the southern deserts. They are the size of big dogs on average, but can be smaller and much bigger. Rek'SaiSquare.png Rek'Sai by far the biggest and the most dangerous of the species. Xer’sai burst from their small burrows and savage anything nearby, at the detriment of desert caravans. Once dead, the Xer'sai decompose at an abnormally rapid rate and become inedible.

Outerbeasts

Beside the Xer'Sai other creatures from the Void, referred to as "outerbeasts", can be found in the desert.

Eka’Sul

Desert goats that travel in herds.

Ralsiji

Large and aggressive minotaur-like creatures. They are humpbacked quadrupeds with long limbs and thick horns.

Shuriman camels

This breed of camels are used by Caravans as transportation.[10]


History

"A cloud of smoldering destruction hangs in the night sky. This is the Fall of Shurima.

The Ancients groped blindly in the darkness, threatening to unravel the very fabric of creation in their hubris. Noble Shurimans who Ascended found a loose thread in the universe’s tapestry, and pulled upon it. The vulgarity of their ambition consumed thousands of innocent lives and ended a golden age.

Such was the fate of mighty Shurima and of men who would become gods."
― Ionian storyteller

A Dire Threat To Ancient Shurima

The Sun Disc was ancient long before the pinnacle of the Shuriman Empire.[11] NasusSquare.png Nasus and RenektonSquare.png Renekton knew of its power, and used it to ascend in order to face a dire threat from mysterious beings.[12]

An Ancient Mystery In Runeterra

Described by EzrealSquare.png Ezreal.
AAMIR Urn

The Shuriman urn picturing the AatroxSquare.png dark figure.

Shurima's been gone for centuries. It's hardly anything but dust now, but the ruins that remain show a massive civilization that once thrived in the desert. EzrealSquare.png I have no idea what happened to the empire. It seems like it vanished without a trace... but that's a whole different mystery.

I found this urn in a tomb there. From the look of the place and some of the carvings on the walls, it was the final resting place of a great Shuriman warlord who led a battle against impossible odds. He and his men should have gone out in a blaze of glory, but somehow, they won. Just a handful of warriors defeated thousands of enemies who rose against them.

It's no wonder they'd immortalize that kind of victory on the walls of a tomb, but what is this AatroxSquare.png dark figure doing on the urn? What part did he play in this battle? I just don't get it.


Fall of the Empire

"In ancient Shurima, young emperor AzirSquare.png Azir was persuaded by XerathSquare.png Xerath, his magus, to attempt the fabled Ascension ritual – despite ancient warnings to do so only in times of direst threat."

"Azir’s hubris proved disastrous. As the Shurima's Legacy Sun Disc focused the dawn rays into a transformative beam, Xerath betrayed Azir, shoving his emperor aside and stealing its power for himself."

"In an instant, Azir was obliterated – and Xerath remade as a spectral being of pure, malevolent energy – as the city around them was swallowed whole by the desert."

"NasusSquare.png Nasus and RenektonSquare.png Renekton, Ascended heroes of Shuriman legend, sensed in an instant that something had gone terribly wrong and rushed to the Sun Disc. They hurled Xerath into a chained sarcophagus – but the magus shattered it into shards."

"Renekton dragged Xerath into the Tomb of the Emperors and shouted to Nasus to seal the door. With a heavy heart, Nasus entombed his brother with a madman in the buried ruins for all eternity.

Or so he believed…"[13]

Descent Into the Tomb

Narrated by NasusSquare.png Nasus[14].

"The tragic fall of Shurima was nothing comparing to the tragedy of its rise from the grave.

In a market at the edge of a desert. A stranger appears. CassiopeiaSquare.png Cassiopeia, a noblewoman from Noxus looking to hire a guide to take her to the fabled lost city. But not just any guide, she hires a owner of a legendary blade, the mercenary called SivirSquare.png Sivir. Sivir gathers her band of sell-swords and set out in to the desert to find the very bones of Shurima.

Five days beneath the broiling sun a scout spots towers juddering upwards and a stairway leading underground. They climb down, into the darkness.

Ancient treasures gleam in the torch-light, even Sivir is astonished of the grandeur of the ruins. Her men head deeper in only to stumble into traps and be eviscerated. Sivir is stunned with horror, but Cassiopeia does not flinch. She sees only the statue of a huge serpent silently guarding the door to the tomb of the Emperors and smiles.

The ancient weapon is a key. Cassiopeia betrays Sivir. She picks up Sivir's blade, puts it into the lock. The guardians curse is triggered. The stone serpent comes alive, impales Cassiopeia in its jaws - the venom sears her flesh like acid.

The Tomb door opens. RenektonSquare.png Renekton emerges, the brother I loved and locked away, twisted beyond insanity, followed by XerathSquare.png Xerath, an architect of his torment. My failure is complete.

Sivir drags herself away, life blood flooding from her wound and then succumbs to darkness..."

Rise of the Ascended

Narrated by NasusSquare.png Nasus[15].
Azir OriginalSkin

Azir, the Emperor of the Sands

"As SivirSquare.png Sivir lies betrayed and bleeding, something incredible occurs. For though she does not know it, Sivir is the last in the bloodline of AzirSquare.png Azir, Shurima’s lost emperor. And as her blood soaks into the ancient sands, a deep magic sparks to life. Resurrection!

First Azir’s mind, then his body. Snatched back from oblivion to be reborn. Then he sees Sivir, wonders at her face, he sees himself in this daughter of Shurima. In that moment, he has no thought of empires or rituals. He only knows: she needs his help.

He must take her to the Oasis of the Dawn - the Mother of Life. He smells the waters - smells of life. He prays he is in time. He does not dream that he, Shurima’s greatest emperor, can at long last earn his Ascension and bring back his broken city. He dares not dream that if he can save her...Azir can save them all."

The Sands have shifted

Shurima is resurrected, and Runeterra's future is forever altered. XerathSquare.png Xerath and RenektonSquare.png Renekton have been unleashed from the Tomb of the Emperors. NasusSquare.png Nasus, haunted by his brother's heroic sacrifice, is relentlessly pursued by Renekton in his mad thirst for vengeance. Bristling with power and resentment, Xerath plots to reforge Valoran in the fires of revolution. The serpent's curse is the terrible price of CassiopeiaSquare.png Cassiopeia's ambition, but it also promises a power she never imagined. AzirSquare.png Azir, Ascended ruler of a fallen civilization, envisions a new Shuriman empire, while his descendant SivirSquare.png Sivir, ever the mercenary, looks to turn the situation to her advantage. Shurima is a land of mystery... but some mysteries refuse to remain buried.[16]

Trivia

Shurima's Pendant

Shurima's Pendant

  • The name Shurima comes from ancient Egyptian word "Shu", meaning emptiness and "he who rises up".
    • It is also the name for the Egyptian god associated with light and air. Shu's father was Ra. This perfectly describes Shurima itself, as the son of The Sun.
  • The Emperor of Shurima had other titles such as the Golden Sun or Beloved of Mother Desert.
  • The speech LissandraSquare.png Lissandra holds in the Howling Abyss mentions that Shurima had not yet been swallowed by the desert when the Frozen Watchers lived in Freljord.
  • For some Valoran's Shurima was an Atlantis-like myth. Others, like the current inhabitants of Shurima, knew it existed a long time ago but did not believe any "true" Shurimans remained. RenektonSquare.png Renekton and NasusSquare.png Nasus were also stories for them. [17]
  • The only know map of Shurima is symbolic in its nature. Ancient Shuriman people used it purely for recognizing key landmarks of the Empire and it was before the use of realistic cartography.
    • The map shown rising and the setting of the Sun, a important cosmic body in Shuriman culture. In Shurima, as any visitor knows, the sun rises in the East, sweeps high across the sky on the North side, and then sets in the West. If we take these symbols that represent dawn, noon, and the missing setting sun, then the drawing is orientated with North at the top. It also shows the key mountain ranges of those directions (Mount Targon facing the North).[18]
  • Shurima's fall was recorded in a constellation by a Celestial Being known as BardSquare.png Bard.
  • Shurima is described as a place that had a thriving culture, not only a strong military and a powerful emperor. It had a sense of personal identity with art, music, literature, trade, magical technology, etc. AzirSquare.png Azir's motivation to bring the golden light of Shurima to other nations neither was nor is for conquest; he truly believes that Shurima was the height of civilization, and could only continue to grow more wonderful.[19]
  • Although Shuriman, MalzaharSquare.png Malzahar isn't directly involved in Shurima's return. He has his hands full.[20]
  • Almost all the names given to the Voidborn are ancient Shuriman in origin. [21]
  • The Ancient Coin item.png Ancient Coin, Nomad's Medallion item.png Nomad's Medallion and Talisman of Ascension item.png Talisman of Ascension are Shuriman artifacts. [22]
  • Sunfire Cape item.png Sunfire Cape bears a Crest of Shurima.
  • Although they are not Shurimans, KhaZixSquare.png Kha'Zix, FiddlesticksSquare.png Fiddlesticks, and ZileanSquare.png Zilean have a Shurima-themed skin.
  • Shurima's crest was inspired by the Shurima's Legacy Sun Disc.


Media

Main Theme
Shurima Crest (Ascension Game Mode) League Of Legends Login Screen With Music02:02

Shurima Crest (Ascension Game Mode) League Of Legends Login Screen With Music

Ascended Theme
Related Themes

  • Fall of Shurima constellation
  • Nasus glass mural
  • Sivir at the Oasis of the Dawn 1
  • Sivir at the Oasis of the Dawn 2
  • Azir before Ascending
  • Azir Ascending
  • Azir Ascended
  • Post-resurrection Shuriman Capital
  • Imperial Palace and Grand Temple of Shurima
  • Oasis of the Dawn 1
  • Oasis of the Dawn 2
  • Oasis of the Dawn 3
  • Shurima Temple in the Wastes
  • Old Shurima concept art
  • Old Shurima Crest

Affiliated Champions

Champion Ties
AzirSquare.png Azir, the Emperor of the Sands Birthplace; Ascended being; Shuriman Emperor
NasusSquare.png Nasus, the Curator of the Sands Birthplace; Ascended being; brother of RenektonSquare.png Renekton
RammusSquare.png Rammus, the Armordillo Residence; travels across the Shuriman desert
Rek'SaiSquare.png Rek’Sai, the Void Burrower Residence; largest and most feared of the Xer'Sai
RenektonSquare.png Renekton, the Butcher of the Sands Birthplace; Ascended being; enraged brother of NasusSquare.png Nasus
SivirSquare.png Sivir, the Battle Mistress Birthplace; mercenary, sole living descendant of AzirSquare.png Azir
SkarnerSquare.png Skarner, the Crystal Vanguard Residence; guardian beneath Shurima
XerathSquare.png Xerath, the Magus Ascendant Birthplace; Magus to the Emperor; Ascended being

Other Related Champions

Champion Ties
AatroxSquare.png Aatrox, the Darkin Blade Aided a Shuriman warlord in ancient times
AmumuSquare.png Amumu, the Sad Mummy Awokened from an ancient Shuriman tomb
CassiopeiaSquare.png Cassiopeia, the Serpent's Embrace Hired SivirSquare.png Sivir to raid the Tomb of the Emperors; transformed by a Shuriman curse
EzrealSquare.png Ezreal, the Prodigal Explorer Discovered a magical artifact in a Shuriman tomb
KassadinSquare.png Kassadin, the Void Walker Presumed birthplace; leader of the "Preservers"
MalzaharSquare.png Malzahar, the Prophet of the Void Birthplace; Shuriman seer; leader of the "Cult of the Void"

See Also

References

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