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Dragonborn (Lore)

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For other uses, see Dragonborn.
First Dragonborn

Miraak, said to have been the first Dragonborn.

"Skyrim legend tells of a hero known as the Dragonborn, a warrior with the body of a mortal and soul of a dragon, whose destiny it is to destroy the evil dragon Alduin."
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

A Dragonborn, (Dovahzul: DOVAhKIiN Dovahkiin, which can mean both "dragon-born" and "dragonkind-hunter-born"), is a rare individual who has been born with the blood and soul of a dragon, but the body and frailties of a mortal.[1] They can naturally learn and speak the ancient and powerful tongue of the Dov, called the Thu'um.[2]

Dragonborn scarcely exist, and it is rare for more than one to appear at the same time.[2] They can belong to any race or gender, since dragons have no inherent concept of gender, and the dragon blood (transliterated from DOVAhSOS to Dovah Sos) is a gift bestowed to certain mortals favored by Akatosh. Despite their divine souls, Dragonborn possess a mortal free will and may serve as champions for either the Nine Divines or the Daedric Princes. It is unknown if the Daedra claim the souls of their Dragonborn champions as they do with their other servants. Their mortal bodies also subject them to mortal vulnerabilities; old age, death, and disease all affect Dragonborn as they do common mortals.

Some Dragonborn individuals have knowledge of the Thu'um and can consume a slain dragon's soul and absorb its knowledge directly, allowing them to learn Words of Power instantaneously, and then use the power of a slain dragon's soul to unlock that Shout.[2] It is said that the Blades have always guided, protected, and served the Dragonborn, whom they consider "The Ultimate Dragon Slayer."[3] The Greybeards, however, see the Blades as ambitious assassins who seek to mold the Dragonborn into a weapon for their own ends.[2]

The Prophecy of the Dragonborn, generally attributed to the Elder Scrolls[4], and sometimes to the ancient Akaviri, tells that, at the end of time, in the wake of the World-Eater, the wheel will turn upon the "Last Dragonborn."[1]

Dragonborn in historyEdit

The first Dragonborn in history was Miraak, a Dragon Priest from the Merethic Era. Instead of using his Voice to fight Alduin, Miraak decided to serve the Daedric Prince Hermaeus Mora instead, making himself an enemy of the Dragon Cult he once served. He was eventually defeated by the dragons and hid in Apocrypha. He was later encountered and destroyed in the Fourth Era by the Last Dragonborn.[5]

The next Dragonborn was purportedly Saint Alessia, the Nedic slave queen who was blessed by Akatosh and given the Amulet of Kings to seal the covenant between them. This began the tradition of all legitimate rulers of the Cyrodilic Empire referred to as Dragonborn, as only they could wear the Amulet of Kings and light the Dragonfires in the Temple of the One.[1][6][7]

Reman Cyrodiil was considered to be the next Dragonborn after Alessia. Upon their defeat, the Akaviri invaders recognized him as Dragonborn and swore unceasing loyalty to him.[1]

Tiber Septim, founder of the Septim Dynasty of Tamriel, was the next individual to be recognized as Dragonborn. His heirs continued the tradition and were all considered Dragonborn Emperors. This lineage ended with the death of Martin Septim during the Oblivion Crisis.

Notable DragonbornEdit

Possible DragonbornEdit


  • To address the confusion that arose from the existence of a Dragonborn predating Alessia, Michael Kirkbride, former writer at Bethesda, revealed "Alessia didn't have the power to absorb dragon souls. Hers was a much more nuanced power: to dream of liberty and give it a name and on her deathbed make Covenant with the Aka-Tusk."[OOG 1]
  • The Nerevarine was referred to as "Dragon-born" in The Lost Prophecy, but the explanatory notes of this text claim this means they were part of the Empire.


Notice: The following are out-of-game references. They are not found in any in-game books, but can still be considered part of The Elder Scrolls lore and are included for completeness.
  1. - Michael Kirkbride's forum post

Start a Discussion Discussions about Dragonborn (Lore)

  • Soul of the Dragonborn in Oblivion.

    17 messages
    • I almost wish to believe that the last dragon born, with him saving the entirely of burn, gets to reach the point fiber septum reached and beco...
    • How about this: In a move reminiscent of John Constantine in Hellblazer (not that, though admittedly amusing, crappy Hollywood thing), the L...
  • Could the hero in each game actually be the same person?

    382 messages
    • DarkVaultBoy wrote: Yes, that's basically what I said, did you think I meant it's impossible for HoK and sheo to be the same perso...
    • YinyangElementofduality wrote: DarkVaultBoy wrote: Yes, that's basically what I said, did you think I meant it's impossible for HoK ...

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