Shrine of Compassion

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The Shrine of Compassion

The Shrine of Compassion is one of the eight holy sites established by the Council of Wizards during the days of Lord British's philosophical renaissance of the early Age of Enlightenment. Lying near the shores of Lock Lake, east of Britain, this sacred place was initially mired in a hazardous swampland, but in later years came to be incorporated into the nearby village of Cove. During Ultima VII, a single unadorned ring lay on its altar.

Those who meditate at the shrine gain insight into the virtue of Compassion, which derives from unending Love. Entrance to the shrine at various points in history has required the use of an appropriate rune, and in order for a pilgrim to achieve wisdom from their ministrations there, they must intone the mantra "Mu."


Age of Enlightenment[edit]

The Shrine of Compassion came into being at the dawn of the Age of Enlightenment and would prove crucial -alongside the other shrines to the virtues- in shaping the soul of the Stranger who would become the Avatar. After successfully demonstrating their charitable empathy toward others, the hero would attain partial enlightenment in Compassion here after sitting for three cycles in contemplation.

Years later, after the disappearance of Lord British and the rise of the Shadowlords, the Avatar would return to this shrine, and would receive a mysterious injunction from it to seek out the wisdom of the Codex of Ultimate Wisdom regarding its signature virtue. During this dark era, the hero would also have to guard it and the other Britannian shrines from the machinations of the corrupt Lord Blackthorn, who would attempt to defile the shrine should he gain access to its mantra. Should the Shrine of Compassion fall to such treachery, however, the Avatar could restore it, using the mystic word of power, "VILIS."

During the Gargoyle War, this shrine would fall alongside the other seven to the forces of Draxinusom, and many brave men under the command of Captain Geoffrey would be slain in a failed expedition to reclaim it. Eventually, however, the Avatar and their company would liberate this sacred site, and would be again able to seek council at its altar. The forces of the shrine would once more compel the hero to seek the knowledge contained in the Codex, and would grant them and their company a boon of dexterity should they prove themselves worthy of it.

Age of Armageddon[edit]

In the centuries leading to the rise of the Guardian, the Shrine of Compassion was one of the only Britannian shrines not to face defilement or abandonment. A woman known as Ariana, after having met the Avatar as a child, vowed that she and her descendants would forever watch over the shrine and tend to its upkeep. Her son Mikhail, granddaughter Magda and great-granddaughter Nadia all performed this duty as custodians, and by the time of the Avatar's eventual return, the shrine was under the care-taking of the troubled Nastassia - who may well have enjoyed the affections of the famous champion of the virtues.[1] Whatever the truth of their relationship, the hero would return years later to find Nastassia absent, with a young woman known as Sarah watching over the sad remains of the corrupted shrine in her stead.

After learning of the Guardian's schemes to pollute the virtue of the land through use of his columns and the perverse corruptions of the runes known as glyphs, the Avatar would eventually restore the Shrine of Compassion to its former glory, using the Heart of Compassion to cleanse both the shrine and its rune.

Other Appearances[edit]

A Shrine of Compassion


  • The Keyring Mod for the Ultima VII utility, Exult, gives the Avatar the option to meditate at the Shrine of Compassion using its corresponding rune. It will issue a quest for the hero to seek knowledge of Compassion from the Codex of Ultimate Wisdom, as it had in previous games.


  1. De MariaUnderworld Dragon's Ultima VII TranscriptUltima VII. "Nastassia, tale".

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