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At long last... no king rules forever my son.
- Terenas Menethil

Terenas Menethil II was the last true king of Lordaeron and one of the primary founders of the original Alliance of Lordaeron, the first time in three thousand years the human kingdoms were united since the breaking of Arathor.[3] Ruling for over five decades, including the period of the Second and Third Wars, Terenas acted as a patron of the Alliance and sought to keep it united as political issues had arisen.[4] His death at the hands of his own son deprived the Alliance of its leadership at a critical moment in history.

Terenas is the narrator of Wrath of the Lich King intro cinematic and is voiced by Earl Boen, who also voiced Terenas in his in-game appearances in Icecrown Citadel. Ted Whitney, who voiced Terenas in Warcraft III[5], passed away a short time after finishing his work.[6]


Terenas Menethil II was born in the court of the kingdom of Lordaeron, one of the strongest human nations, as a member of the royal Menethil family, which had ruled the kingdom for generations. An old friend of Thoras Trollbane, Terenas grew up to become a wise and just ruler, greatly loved by his people. His long years of reign saw peace and brought prosperity for Lordaeron, but all this changed with the outset of the Second War.

Terenas's grandfather is said to have had successful negotiations with the elves of Quel'Thalas over the borders there for his northern vassals.[7] (DotD 82)

The Second War

After the First War, refugees from the Kingdom of Stormwind led by Sir Anduin Lothar, accompanied by Prince Varian Wrynn and Khadgar, arrived on the shores of Lordaeron. They traveled to Capital City and met with Terenas, giving warnings of the orcs and the invasion that was to come. Terenas called delegates from neighboring human nations, and, after hearing the horror stories from Sir Lothar and his people, they agreed to forge the Alliance of Lordaeron. Terenas also asked the High elves of Quel'Thalas for help as well as the dwarves of Ironforge. Prince Varian was left with his family, befriending his son Arthas and becoming like a second son to Terenas.[8]

Terenas organized the forces of Lordaeron in the defense of Capital City against the onslaught of the Horde during the Second War.[9] He even commanded the defenses of the battle that almost resulted in the fall of Lordaeron, where his kingdom was almost destroyed by the Horde and Terenas almost killed by an orc that was killed by Morev. But in the end, their sacrifices were not in vain, and the Alliance won through, decimating the Horde and rounding up the surviving orcs into internment camps, headed by Aedelas Blackmoore. The orc warchief Orgrim Doomhammer was kept as the personal prisoner of Terenas, the human king fervently hoping that a treaty could be arranged with the orcish leader. Terenas thought that if the orcs could be kept pacified long enough, they ought to eventually lose their lust for conquest, and as such he pleaded to keep them interned instead of executing them.[10] Doomhammer eventually escaped captivity and fled into hiding.

Aftermath of the Second War

Despite the end of the Second War, peace did not last long. He and the other kings of the Alliance were present at the meeting in Nethergarde Keep. Later, he met with Thoras Trollbane, Muradin Bronzebeard, and Lord Daval Prestor and discussed the matter with Alterac and Perenolde. When it was discovered that the rift to the orc's home world was expanding, Terenas immediately decreed in conjunction with Varian Wrynn, who had assumed his rightful place on the throne of Stormwind, and the other kings to rally the Alliance army that would venture into Draenor in order to retrieve the artifacts stolen by the Horde and end the orcish threat for good. The Alliance Expedition led by Khadgar and Turalyon undertook the Invasion of Draenor, eventually succeeding and and sealing the Dark Portal from the other side to prevent Draenor's destruction from destroying Azeroth as well.[4][11]

Some years later, the matter of what to do with the Kingdom of Alterac came up. Trollbane wanted to split the lands between Lordaeron and Stromgarde. However, King Genn Greymane supported Lord Perenolde's nephew Isiden's claim to the throne while Admiral Daelin Proudmoore of Kul Tiras was opposed to Gilnean influence in the region. Lord Prestor, who appeared to be a relative to the late Lord Perenolde, was one of Terenas' trusted advisors during this time, and Terenas began to arrange a marriage for Prestor to his young daughter Calia. Terenas even wished his own son was more like Prestor.[12] Prestor was endorsed by most Alliance nations as the new king of Alterac, solving everyone’s—and particularly Terenas’—political nightmare. This plan was scrapped, however, when Prestor suddenly disappeared.

The Alliance Splinters

When the political problems culminated, Terenas realized that the Alliance would crumble. The first ally to secede were the elves of Quel'Thalas, as they blamed the humans for not being able to save their burned forests. Terenas tactfully reminded them that it was the Alliance that saved them from being annihilated entirely. Gilneas then separated from the whole world behind the Greymane Wall and Thoras Trollbane proposed a mass execution of the orcs but Lordaeron refused to do so. The quarrels of the two friends ended when Stromgarde too seceded from the Alliance. In spite of these loses, many nations remained with Lordaeron and Uther, who considered him as a brother, alongside Alonsus Faol had helped him to rebuild Lordaeron and other kingdoms.[13][14]

The Reign of Chaos

Time wore on and Terenas grew more and more infirm, struggling to hold together the collapsing Alliance despite all of his pleas with the dissident nations of Gilneas, Stromgarde, and Quel'Thalas. Nonetheless, Terenas still had allies he could rely on, as the nations of Stormwind, Kul Tiras, Dalaran, and Ironforge remained committed to the Alliance. In the meantime, his son, Arthas, became the prized protégé of Uther the Lightbringer and a paladin of the Silver Hand.

The troubles began with the orcish uprisings through Arathi, as well as the Plague spreading from the North. Many of the Alliance representatives, especially the ones from Dalaran, were pleading for a quarantine. But Terenas refused, saying that the people of Lordaeron had suffered enough. The mysterious prophet unexpectedly materialized during a council of the Alliance, and pleaded with Terenas to make haste to Kalimdor or all would be lost. Terenas, however, paid no heed, thinking him little more than a madman. It was here that King Terenas sealed his fate.

Weeks later, Terenas heard of Arthas's strange behavior, including the destruction of Stratholme and his excursion to Northrend. Terenas immediately ordered the troops recalled at Uther's request, but no word was heard from them for months.


Finally, Prince Arthas returned, victorious over the evil he had faced in Northrend. All of Lordaeron Capital rejoiced in festival, celebrating the long-awaited return of their heroic Prince. But something was amiss.

As he knelt before his father, a dark voice flooded Arthas' thoughts. He rose up, drew his sword, and approached the throne. Taking his father by the throat, Arthas drove the dark runeblade Frostmourne through his heart. Thus did Terenas of the House of Menethil, King of Lordaeron, die at the hands of his own son—bringing an end to not only his reign, which had lasted for 70 years, but also to the Kingdom of Lordaeron itself.


Inscription of Terenas' grave

Terenas' ashes were kept in a magical urn, guarded by Uther the Lightbringer himself. Arthas, desiring the urn for his own ends, slew the great paladin, and discarded his father's ashes. The king's remains were recovered and interred reverently, behind the throne room of Lordaeron:

Here lies King Terenas Menethil II -- Last True King of Lordaeron.

Great were his deeds -- long was his reign -- unthinkable was his death.

"May the Father lie blameless for the deeds of the son.
May the bloodied crown stay lost and forgotten."

Fall of the Lich King

Terenas resurrects the fallen.

Terenas holds his dead son's body.

The soul of Terenas Menethil II speaks to the Lich King warning him that the combined might of the Alliance, the Horde, the Argent Crusade and the Knights of the Ebon Blade have finally fought their way to Icecrown Citadel itself to defeat him once and for all.

Terenas' spirit appears in Icecrown Citadel during the battle against the Lich King. When players fall victim to the "Fury of Frostmourne" spell, they are brought into Frostmourne itself, where they find Terenas struggling against the spirit warden of the sword. The player must aid Terenas in defeating it, at which point the blade becomes weakened enough for him to be able to return the player to the real fight. At 10%, the Lich King then kills the entire raid (an intended mechanic, not a wipe) and prepares to raise them as his most powerful servants when Tirion Fordring, frozen for the entire fight, breaks free of his bonds and shatters Frostmourne with the Ashbringer. As the souls claimed by Frostmourne swirl around the Lich King, Terenas' spirit appears to resurrect the dead to finish off the immobilized master of the Scourge.

During the outro cinematic, Terenas remains at Arthas' side as he dies.

Arthas, his soul completely his again, lies supine, the shattered remnants of Frostmourne beside him. He stares as the ghost of Terenas Menethil materializes over him, and the blue glow of the Lich King dissipates from his eyes. As Terenas kneels next to him, Arthas places a hand on his father's chest.

Arthas Menethil says: Father! Is it... over?

Terenas Menethil II says: At long last. No king rules forever, my son.

Terenas lays a comforting hand on Arthas' gauntlet.

Arthas Menethil says: I see... only darkness.. before... me...

Arthas' eyes roll back into his head as his lifeless hand falls to the ground. Terenas closes his son's eyes and gently lays him on the ground as Tirion walks in.

Terenas Menethil II says: Without its master's command, the restless Scourge will become an even greater threat to this world.

Terenas stands, facing Tirion.

Terenas Menethil II says: Control must be maintained. There must always be.... a Lich King.

Terenas fades in a blinding flash of light.


Terenas Menethil II in Warcraft II.

  • "Noble countrymen, evil is upon us. Darkness has befallen our shores. Rise and slay thy enemies… strike, strike so others shall live. The meek shall not fade into the night… live my brethren, live."[15]
  • "A people cannot survive because it can gather in a city - a city survives because it is where the people gather."[16] (WoWRPG 377)
  • "I will not institute quarantine without proof of your claims, Ambassador. The people of Lordaeron have suffered enough without becoming prisoners in their own lands." - Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos
  • "I don't know who you are or what you believe, but this is not the time for rambling prophets! Our lands are beset by conflict, but it shall be we who decide how best to protect our people, not you!" - to Medivh, Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos
  • "I will summon my neighboring kings. These events concern us all." - to Anduin Lothar, Tides of Darkness
  • "No King rules forever, my son." - to Arthas Menethil after being killed on the Frozen Throne.


Wrath of the Lich King trailer

Terenas Menethil II narrates the opening cinematic to World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King, reminding Arthas of his duty as the heir to the throne of Lordaeron.[17]

My son, the day you were born, the very forests of Lordaeron whispered the name Arthas.
My child, I watched with pride as you grew into a weapon of righteousness.
Remember, our line has always ruled with wisdom and strength. And I know you will show restraint when exercising your great power.
But the truest victory, my son, is stirring the hearts of your people. I tell you this, for when my days have come to an end, you shall be King.

Fall of the Lich King trailer

The soul of Terenas Menethil II as seen in the official trailer of Fall of the Lich King.

The soul of Terenas Menethil II speaks to the Lich King in the trailer for patch 3.3: Fall of the Lich King. He warns the Lich King that the combined might of the Alliance, the Horde, the Argent Crusade and the Knights of the Ebon Blade have finally fought their way to Icecrown Citadel itself to defeat him once and for all.

Spirit of Terenas Menethil: Can you feel it, my son, closing in all around you? The Light's justice has been awakened. The sins of the past have finally caught up to you. You will be called to account for all the atrocities you've committed, the unspeakable horrors you've let loose upon this world, and the dark, ancient powers you've enslaved. Though my soul was one of the first to be devoured by your evil, there are thousands more bound within this blade, and they cry out for release. Look now to your defenses, my son, for the champions of justice gather at your gates!
The Lich King: Let them come. Frostmourne hungers.




King Terenas meets Medivh Fall of the King
War_Craft_3-Reign_of_Chaos_Human_Intro Fall_of_the_Lich_King_Trailer

WoW Pro Lore The Alliance of Lordaeron

Terenas assembles the Alliance of Lordaeron


Warcraft 3 Cinematic Story Boards

The "Making of" Reign of Chaos Human Intro movie from Warcraft III Collector's Edition Cinematic DVD


  • In Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos, Uther claims to Arthas that Terenas ruled Lordaeron for seventy years; while in Arthas: Rise of the Lich King, he says that he ruled for fifty years.
  • Terenas' "no king rules forever" quote was foreshadowed by Yogg-Saron's "no king rules forever; only death is eternal" quote about the Lich King.
  • In the World of Wacraft Novel Tides of Darkness, during the Orcish assault on Capital City, it is said that Terenas is no fighter, as he attempts to defend himself until his men come to his aid. However, he is listed as a Paladin in the lore.
  • In Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos, Uther the Lightbringer indicates that the urn Arthas sought contained the ashes of Terenas. However, upon entering Undercity, the player can encounter a memorial containing the remains of Terenas, along with an inscription. It is unknown whether or not this was intentional, as it is also unknown what Arthas did with the ashes after using it to resurrect Kel'Thuzad.


This article or section includes speculation, observations or opinions possibly supported by lore or by Blizzard officials. It should not be taken as representing official lore.

It is unknown who interred the remains. It's possible that some Forsaken, feeling some residual loyalty to Lordaeron did it.

It could also have been the members of the Silver Hand, although when they would have had the time is unknown. Another possibility is that the remaining Alliance forces in Lordaeron under Garithos erected the memorial during the short time that they controlled Capital City before Sylvanas took control.


  1. ^ A [20] Reclaiming Goods - Description
  2. ^ A [20] Return the Statuette - Description
  3. ^ The Alliance of Lordaeron
  4. ^ a b >Warcraft III manual
  5. ^ Warcraft III Cinematics Disc
  6. ^ Warcraft III Cinematics Disc (WarCraft 3 Cinematics Study, Quote: As commented on the cinematic DVD, the voice actor for King Terenas sadly died a short time after voicing his part.).
  7. ^ DotD, 82
  8. ^ Rosenberg, Aaron; Christie Golden. Beyond the Dark Portal, 21. ISBN 978-1-4165-5086-0. 
  9. ^ Tides of Darkness, page 265-266
  10. ^ Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal manual, Warcraft II manual - The Aftermath of the Second War
  11. ^ Beyond the Dark Portal
  12. ^ Knaak, Richard A.. Day of the Dragon, 24. ISBN 978-0-6710-4152-6. 
  13. ^ The Alliance Splinters
  14. ^ Warcraft III Manual
  15. ^ Terenas Stand. Classic Retrieved on 2012-08-25.
  16. ^ WoWRPG, 377
  17. ^ World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King (bad link). Archived from the original on 2010-12-03. Retrieved on 2012-08-25.

External links

Inside Frostmourne Lich King's Fall
Preceded by:
Ruler of Lordaeron
Succeeded by:
Arthas Menethil (King of Lordaeron, Othmar Garithos (Grand Marshal of Humans in Lordaeron
Preceded by:
Llane Wrynn (As the King of the Kingdom of Azeroth) Warcraft: Orcs & Humans
High King of The Alliance of Lordaeron Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness
Succeeded by:
Jaina Proudmoore Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos