Sharn is the most populous city in all of Khorvaire, and arguably all of Eberron. The city literally towers atop a cliff above the mouth of the Dagger River in southern Breland.
Sharn is known as The City of Towers, but has also been called many other names, including The City of Knives, The City of Lost Souls, The City of a Thousand Eyes, the Gateway to Xen’drik, and The Gateway to Perdition.
The city now known as Sharn was built upon a foundation that dates back thousands of years before humans ever settled Khorvaire. During that time, the hobgoblin Dhakaani Empire’s greatest city was carved into the jagged cliffs that Sharn now towers over. This city was called Ja’Shaarat. This metropolis didn’t rise toward the skies, like Sharn does. Instead, the architects of the Dhakaani built a vast number of chambers and tunnels into and under the ground. As the city grew in size, the Dhakaani eventually would build great monolithic buildings on the plateaus above the Dagger River that would later serve as the foundations for Sharn. When the Daelkyr invaded Eberron, the city was devastated, and the hobgoblins never had a chance to restore it to its greater glory.
Sharn coat of arms
Thousands of years later when human settlers from Sarlona began to explore Khorvaire, the Dagger River was stumbled upon. The river led Malleon the Reaver and his explorers to the site where Ja’Shaarat once stood. There he enslaved what goblins still resided in the ruins and erected a fortress within the ruins. He sealed off the lower wards of the ancient hobgoblin city and named the city Shaarat, as a result of stories told by the goblins he enslaved. For 600 years, Shaarat prospered and grew into a powerful metropolis once again. Breggor Firstking, the first ruler of what would become Breland, eventually conquered Shaarat and renamed it Sharn.
Over the course of the next 800 years, Sharn’s towers began to rise and the city developed into something resembling Sharn today. Around this time, the Dragonmarked Houses began to prosper and this helped cultivate Sharn into economic power. But the Dragonmarked Houses also brought with them the War of the Mark. The leader of those who bore the aberrant dragonmark, Tarkanan, took control of Sharn and turned it into a home for all who wore the destructive marks.
Tarkanan couldn’t hold the city for long, but in the end he used his terrible powers to destroy much of the city. For the next 500 years, the city was looked down upon and the city remained in ruins. Then, when Galifar I took control of the Five Nations he rebuilt Sharn. The metropolis felt the blessings of Galifar and would eventually develop into the center for trade, diplomacy, and intrigue that it is today.