Field Photographer Friday is a weekly look at the lore and history behind locations around World of Warcraft. This week, we're taking a look at Light's Hope Chapel!
Originally built by the Kingdom of Lordaeron, Light's Hope Chapel has stood near the eastern edge of the Eastern Kingdoms continent for thousands of years, in the area now known as Eastern Plaguelands. It is renowned as sacred land by heroes of the Light and has served as their base of operations for many years.
The Chapel was first notably used by Maxwell Tyrosus as a safe haven for the bodies of fallen paladins. The bodies were moved to the sacred lands from all over Lordaeron when the first death knight, Arthas Menethil, invaded the kingdom at the order of the Lich King. Maxwell and the Order of the Silver Hand feared Arthas would raise the bodies of the dead paladins to be part of his Scourge army if they remained scattered around. While the bodies that were moved to Light's Hope Chapel were safe, not all of the dead were so lucky, and many were raised to serve in the Scourge army.
As the war with the Lich King waged on, the Silver Hand lost one of their leaders, Alexandros Mograine. He was later raised as a death knight and appeared as one of the original four horseman in the Naxxramas raid. Following his death, the paladins split into the Scarlet Crusade and the Argent Dawn. The Argent Dawn made their home in Light's Hope Chapel. The paladins at the Chapel suffered one final assault from the Scourge, and despite the Scourge's advantage, they repelled the attack with the assistance of Maxwell. This brings us to how Light's Hope Chapel first appeared in classic World of Warcraft.
Towards the end of classic World of Warcraft, Light's Hope Chapel served as the main hub for Horde and Alliance heroes fighting against the Scourge in Scholomance, Stratholme, and eventually Naxxramas. With the eventual defeat of Kel'Thuzad in Naxxramas, the area around Light's Hope Chapel was secured for the time being.
Years later, leading up to the Wrath of the Lich King expansion, Arthas would lead another massive assault against the Chapel. Armed with the Necropolis named Acherus and an unending Scourge army, he marched through the Plaguelands, making quick work of the Scarlet Crusade, their bodies fueling his army. Once again on the steps of Light's Hope Chapel, a fierce battle broke out that saw the paladins vastly outnumbered. With numbers dwindling, their then-leader Highlord Tirion Fordring entered the battle. The Lich King then revealed himself and sprung his trap on Tirion. At this moment, the death knight Darion Mograine had a change of heart and returned Ashbringer to Tirion who was able to use it to break the Lich King's hold on the death knights, forcing the Lich King to flee. This event is the reason death knights were able to join the Horde and Alliance under the leadership of Darion and the banner of the Knights of the Ebon Blade.
During the Cataclysm expansion and following the defeat of the Lich King in Northrend, the Argent Crusade (formerly the Argent Dawn) were able to build a proper fortress around Light's Hope Chapel, turning it into a mighty sanctuary amidst the volatile Plaguelands. The centerpiece of the fortress is a large statue in honor of Highlord Tirion Fordring.
With the release of the Legion expansion, the chambers beneath Light's Hope Chapel were revealed to be the Sanctum of Light. The Sanctum serves as the home of the reestablished Knights of the Silver Hand, a powerful order of paladins that span both factions and all races. From its halls, the Knights wage war against the Legion all across Azeroth.
With Light's Hope Chapel serving as the home base for all paladins and heroes of the Light, it's sure to remain in the spotlight for years to come. Whether or not the Legion will seek to destroy it as the Lich King did remains to be seen, but given the amount of power that now resides there it seems unlikely.
Prominent paladin of the Argent Dawn.
Arthas Menethil, Crown Prince of Lordaeron and Knight of the Silver Hand, was the son of King Terenas Menethil II and heir to the throne; before losing his soul to Mal'Ganis.
Former leader of the Silver Hand and the first to wield Ashbringer.
Kel'Thuzad was once a human mage of the Kirin Tor. He went on to become the founder of the Cult of the Damned and one of the principal agents of the Lich King. -Wowpedia
Former Supreme Commander of the Argent Crusade and bearer of the Ashbringer.
Son of Alexandros Mograine, death knight Highlord of the Knights of the Ebon Blade, former knight of the Argent Dawn.
Join me every Friday as I work to expand my lore knowledge while completing the Field Photographer achievement. Read lore summaries for each location and follow up with resources where you can go more indepth! I encourage you to share your own selfies and any additional lore resources you know of in the comments below, or tweet me @PrestonDvorak. Bonus points* if the selfie is somewhere you shouldn’t be (such as an Alliance player in Orgrimmar)!
*Points are meaningless and have no monetary value, but they’ll never give you up or let you down.