The Fourth Age, also known as The Age of Mortals, was when the surviving races began to rebuild and flourish amongst the world. Heroes from this age include Arrav and Camorra, both of whom have a statue in the Heroes' Guild.
Races during 4th age
Aside from a few settlements in the Kharidian Desert and the refugee town of Burgh De Rott (Meiyerditch, although being the largest city with human population at that time, was already ruled by Vampyres by then), most humans in the beginning of the 4th age had abandoned civilisation due to destroyed settlements and lived in barbaric tribes. The major exception to this was the city of Saranthium, but this was eventually wiped out. As the age progressed, they started to build new and permanent settlements, some of which turned into mighty cities by the late Fourth Age, thus allowing humans to become the dominant race in Gielinor by the end of the Fourth Age. Humans also attempted to recolonise the Wilderness, but were not successful. Humans would not have become dominant, however, if it were not for the discovery of Rune Essence.
Gnomes returned to the surface right after the end of the God Wars, where they found their settlements destroyed. Between the 3rd and 5th centuries of the Fourth Age, gnomes were forced to hide from barbaric human tribes, avoiding extinction. Shortly after that, the Grand Tree was planted and gnome civilisation and technology began to thrive.
Dwarves remained under the surface during the Fourth Age. During that time, they discovered a huge cavern where they built Keldagrim. After the city's foundation, most of their magical powers were somehow lost, allowing them to only cast Superheat Item. During the rule of King Alvis, the Consortium, which quickly became a ruling organization in Keldagrim, was founded; by around the year 1650, after King Alvis's death, the Consortium ruled the Dwarven Realm entirely. Due to their lack of magical abilities, the technology of dwarves had become very advanced by that time. By the end of Fourth Age or at the beginning of Fifth Age, they started making first contacts with the surface once again after a few thousand years.
Imcando dwarves emerged much earlier and retained at least some contact with the surface world during Fourth Age. However, all but 2 Imcando dwarves were slaughtered by barbarians, Thurgo being the most commonly known.
Elves did not remain enclosed in Tirannwn during the Fourth Age. In the early Fourth Age, they ruled large areas of modern day Kandarin for at least part of the age, where they taught humans and lived peacefully. This continued until the Iorwerth Clan, who worshipped the Dark Lord, took over Prifddinas during the Battle of Prifddinas. Rebel clans were forced to stay in Isafdar, a forest south of Prifddinas.
When the Fourth Age began, many of the goblin tribes fought against the other races for resources. In the early Fourth Age, Goblins battled with Ogres, whom they had lived with for ages on Feldip Hills area. They were eventually forced to move northward to the Kandarin areas due to greater strength of Ogres. There, they came in conflict with Gnomes, leading to battles between them. Due to illusion spells used by Gnomes, goblins stopped attacking the gnomes and eventually just tried to settle where they could. By the midpoint of the Fourth Age, goblins were losing the competition for resources and started to fight amongst themselves, culminating in the Battle of Plain of Mud. Throughout the Fourth Age, the majority of goblins became weaker and less intelligent, until they became only a minor threat to other races. They still started to spread over to other areas, like Asgarnia and Misthalin. Eventually, near the end of the Fourth Age, some of the goblin tribes started to build small permanent settlements, with Goblin Village being the most well-known.
Cave goblins remained underground, cut off from other civilisations with no major conflicts. Their main city, Dorgesh-Kaan, prospered while their knowledge of magic and technology grew. At some point in the early 19th century of the Fourth Age, they made contact with Juna and Light creatures.
Under the rule of Lord Drakan, the Vampyres took all of Morytania and enslaved the population. The lands to the east of what was once Hallowvale became known as the Sanguinesti region, and this is believed to be where the vampyre populous lives. The Vampyres have less power the further they stray from this region, so outlying settlements are generally ruined and downtrodden. Those living north of the Mort Myre Swamp are relatively free to manage their own affairs; however, those in the Sanguinesti Region are treated like cattle and routinely drained of blood. All people in what is now known as Morytania pay Blood tithes to the Vampyres. Eventually, Lord Drakan felt strong enough to attack Misthalin, but he was defeated and the River Salve blessed against him. By the late Fourth Age, Morytania was little more than a legend, and people began to settle in the North. Later, these settlers were all enslaved by the Vampyres.
Events with known dates
1st to 8th centuries
- 1?:Gnomes return to the surface after hiding underground during the God Wars, although the dwarves were unaware of the end of the wars until millennia later.
- Right after the beginning of the 4th age, the Fist of Guthix was created.
- 1-200: The druids, worshippers of Guthix, built stone circles to worship Guthix during this time.
- 31-60: The first star chart that is not destroyed was made in this time period, believed to have been made by the great astronomer Scorpius.
- 169: 14th Ritual of Rejuvenation takes place. The sacrifice is currently unknown.
- 200: Robert the Strong drives a new threat, the Dragonkin, into hiding.
- 200-500 (approx.): Barbaric humans hunted the gnomes to near-extinction, causing them to retreat to hidden settlements.
- 600-900: Permanent settlements at Entrana, Falador, and across Karamja are constructed.
- 669: 15th Ritual of Rejuvenation takes place. Mahjarrat Mizzarch is chosen to be sacrificed.
- 700: Avarrocka, later known as Varrock, was built. Varrock is the oldest surviving human settlement outside the Kharidian Desert in Gielinor today. It was founded when a tribe found a baby abandoned, and took it as a good omen. The baby eventually became Arrav, a famous hero.
- 750-850: The people of Avarrocka became very powerful, and conquered their neighbouring tribes, eventually forming the first human nation, Misthalin. Misthalin, in the mid-Fourth Age, however, was little more than a rough conglomeration of tribes, all of whom paid homage to Avarrocka. Nothing that modern scholars would call a nation existed until the end of the Fourth Age.
9th to 15th centuries
- 800-1000: The kingdom of Asgarnia was founded in this time.
- 900-1000 (approx.): The government of Avarrocka changed to a monarchy during this period, but the precise date is unknown. It may have been the creation of the monarchy when the city was renamed Varrock, but it could also have been the start of the Fifth Age or the "official" founding of Misthalin. The Dwarves discover that the God Wars have ended and begin to resurface.
- ??69: After large human settlements were able to defend themselves, the Battle of Plain of Mud takes place between goblin tribes, and the goblins almost drive themselves to extinction. It is believed that this took place in the middle of the Age, probably between 869 and 1269. The battle is stopped indirectly by the god Bandos, however.
- 1169: 16th Ritual of Rejuvenation takes place. Mahjarrat Lamistard is sacrificed.
- 1100-1200: Many dark creatures from Morytania attacked Misthalin, especially Avarrocka. Seven priestly warriors defeated them and blessed the River Salve, making it impassable to creatures of Zamorak.
- 1225: Bilrach the Mahjarrat, along with his followers, began his descent into Daemonheim.
16th to 20th centuries
- 1500-1700: "Old Asgarnia" was presumably destroyed in this time, and Falador was laid to ruin. It is unknown exactly how this happened, but as records show Falador was founded in year 7 of the Fifth Age, while also stating its existence in the mid Fourth Age, historians have deduced that the city was destroyed in approximately this time period.
- 1650 (approx.): After the death of King Alvis, the consortium takes over Keldagrim. During the next few hundred years, the dwarves become very prosperous, as well as technologically advanced. The consortium's leadership enables the development of steam powered boats and trains, as well as advancing methods of smelting ore in factories.
- 1669: The Mahjarrat gather for the 17th Ritual of Rejuvenation near Ghorrock. Ralvash is sacrificed.
- 1769: The Bonde Farm Massacre occurs.
- 1777: Settlers came up the River Salve, looking for places to settle, heedless of the warnings they received at Paterdomus, and settled in Morytania, building Canifis, Port Phasmatys, and Fenkenstrain's Castle. They all eventually came under the dominion of the Vampyres. Port Phasmatys was eventually freed, but the inhabitants were betrayed by their saviour, Necrovarus, and became ghosts enslaved by him.
- 1800-150 of the Fifth Age (date unconfirmed): The gnomes eventually re-established contact with the now more civilised humans.
- 1824-1837: An unknown party conducted experiments with portals while in Daemonheim, summoning many new creatures.
- 1930: Elves in modern-day Kandarin found the Arandar mountain pass, abandoned and inaccessible. They sent five scouts under the mountains, of which the only one to return was Adwr, who brought tales of the Iorwerth Clan's rebellion. King Baxtorian ordered the Elves to return to Tirannwn to retake Prifddinas. They failed, and King Baxtorian returned to find his Kingdom in ruins and his wife dead. It is said that he was so sad he buried himself under a waterfall.
- 1937: The town of Lumbridge was founded in Misthalin. The first Duke of Lumbridge is believed to have been named Polonius, and the town was commissioned by King Claudius. Al Kharid was built soon after, but its people were independent of Misthalin.
- 2000: Discovery of Rune Essence, leading to the dominance of humans.
Events with unknown dates
- The city of Avarrocka launched a crusade to a Zamorakian temple in the desert. Records have been lost, so the reason for this is unknown.
- Avarrocka was renamed Varrock, presumably to celebrate a historic event.
- Early part of the age: The Elven King, Baxtorian, leader of the Cadarn Clan, the most military of the clans, led settlers over the Arandar mountains.
- Mid part of the age: The dragon Garak, who had destroyed many villages near the Wilderness, was slain by the heroine Camorra.
- Mort'ton is affected by the haze originating from Castle Drakan, turning inhabitants into Afflicted and disturbing shades in their catacombs. This, according to the Diary of Herbi Flax, happened when Avarrocka had been renamed Varrock.
- The Zamorakian order of Black Knights is established in northern Asgarnia, leading to constant conflict with the White Knights, which eventually leads to their political overthrow and exile from Asgarnia. This later led to them declaring themselves in war with the White Knights in the Fifth Age.