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Absorbs the life essence of foes. Strengthened by the blood of deceit.
The Ebony Blade is a two-handed weapon found in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. Resembling an Akaviri Dai-Katana, the Ebony Blade is a Daedric artifact belonging to Mephala. Killing kindred with the blade bolsters its power. Followers can wield the blade, but cannot fortify the enchantment unless instructed to kill an ally.
The blade has changed hands many times over the years. It is believed that the Eternal Champion himself once wielded the blade when it was discovered in Valenwood. Later, it was rewarded to the Hero of Daggerfall sometime after the War of Bretony. In the late Third Era, the Hero of Kvatch was granted the blade by Mephala.
The Ebony Blade is obtained in the Daedric quest "The Whispering Door", which can be initiated by speaking with the barkeep Hulda at The Bannered Mare in Whiterun after reaching level 20 and completing the quest "Dragon Rising". If Hulda is killed, Ysolda will not begin the quest. In this case, it can be started using the console command
setstage DA08 10.
This weapon starts with a 10-point Absorb Health enchantment that can be increased by slaying friendly characters. For example, someone whose favor has been completed, or someone who's been won over during any type of quest can be absorbed by the blade. For every two such characters killed, the weapon's Absorb Health enchantment increases 4 points. Killing ten friendly characters maximizes its power, granting a maximum of 30 points Absorb Health per hit.
Mephala's voice sounds each time the enchantment improves, commenting on the progress of the blade. Her dialogue, in order, is such:
- 2nd Kill - "Excellent work, Child."
- 4th Kill - "I can feel their heartbreak swelling in my blade."
- 6th Kill - "Their tears shine the ebony to a sharpest gleam."
- 8th Kill - "Ah, the blood of deceit is a nourishing flow."
- 10th Kill - "At last, my blade is returned to its full glory. Now, go forth, child. Continue your tiny subversions against the orders of trust and intimacy."
One can be sure the blade is empowered after slaying allies if the hilt glows red.
- Any beggar. Give them a single septim to gain favor, then kill them.
- Mercanaries and followers. Characters that are bested in gambling brawls often become followers immediately thereafter and mercenaries can be hired for 500 gold.
- Dogs that are followers. Tested and confirmed on Meeko and Vigilance.
- Orc Strongholds - Upon retrieving the Forgemaster's Fingers, simply slaughter everyone in at least two of the four strongholds, including the miners.
- Cicero during The Cure for Madness.
- Amaund Motierre - killed at the end of Hail Sithis! after he reveals where the gold is.
- Betrid Silver-Blood during the quest The Forsworn Conspiracy. Killing her before her inevitable death will grant a charge, after which the Dragonborn can try yielding and paying the fee, then continue with the quest.
- Jaree-Ra and Deeja during Lights Out!.
- Nilsine Shatter-Shield during Mourning Never Comes. Player must have completed Blood on the Ice first.
- Any innkeepers or merchants.
- Hroggar during Laid to Rest. Sell some firewood to him before breaking into Alva's house and then kill him there with the Blade.
- Completing The Chief of Thirsk Hall (added by The Elder Scrolls V: Dragonborn) allows select Rieklings to become followers. Killing them while they are followers counts toward the needed kills without the need to lose potential allies or NPCs. Also, Bujold the Intrepid, the other nords, and the old chief may count as charges during this same quest.
- Boethiah's Calling - involves slaying both a companion (first charge) and the cult leader who gives the quest upon investigation (second charge).
- Pieces of the Past - if the Dragonborn chooses to obtain Mehrunes' Razor, killing Silus will provide a charge.
- Ill Met By Moonlight - killing Sinding, should the Dragonborn choose the Savior's Hide instead of the Ring of Hircine. Killing the dying hunter J'Kier after speaking to him inside the entrance to Bloated Man's Grotto may also provide a charge.
- The Taste of Death - the Dragonborn has to kill Brother Verulus at the conclusion of the quest.
- Walking Nightmare - much like Mehrunes' Razor, if the Dragonborn chooses to obtain the Skull of Corruption, Erandur counts for another charge.
- console and typing
resurrect, and kill them again.. The command
player.placeatme xxx(xxx is the character's ID) also works. Kill a friendly character with the Ebony Blade, then resurrect them by clicking on them in the
- Another way to cheat and empower the blade without negatively effecting relationships is to find inconsequential characters, like bandits, set them to a relationship rank of 3 or higher via the console, and kill them. This allows the Dragonborn to maintain an unblemished "good guy" radiant story set while empowering the blade. Otherwise, such as with the resurrect method, affected NPCs and their affiliations are liable to maintain the negative mark against the player resulting in, among possible other changes, greetings such as, "I should have bashed your face in for what you've done," and "Something you need, you miserable wretch?"
- Dead Thrall or the Ritual Stone. Because these powers don't turn them into ash when they die, the character can be repeatedly killed the required number of times. (Tested on patch 126.96.36.199.4) . Death Hound followers from the Dawnguard DLC are good victims, as they won't fight back and have little health. Kill a friendly person and reanimate them with
- conjure a familiar and kill it repeatedly. This provides unlimited charges, and the familiars have very low health. No negative NPC relationships will be incurred. (Doesn't seem to work on PS3 or Xbox 360 post-patch for the DLC) To quickly charge the blade, one may
The blade cannot be upgraded. This is possibly explained in Admonition Against Ebony which states that: "Not even the hottest fires of the Skyforge could melt it; indeed the coals themselves seemed to cool when it was placed within," revealing the sword's immunity to heat or normal forging/smithing techniques.
The blade behaves as a Two-Handed weapon with the following exceptions:
- It only benefits from One-Handed damage effects, enchantments, and potions.
- It benefits from One-Handed weapon perks.
- It swings as fast as most One-Handed weapons.
Though it uses a two-handed mesh file, it uses the template for a one-handed weapon, resulting in improper sound files, attack speed, damage, weight, perk benefits, impact force, and stamina usage.
As of patch 1.9, this has been fixed, and the sword benefits from the Two-Handed weapon skill and perks. For PCs users, a simple adjustment with the creation kit will also solve this.
The Ebony Blade is, in some ways, an upgraded version of the Blade of Woe; it's two-handed and has unlimited charge. It has a very fast attack speed, faster than any other two-handed weapon, though it has the lowest damage per hit. The unlimited enchantment charge helps makes up for the reduced damage.
Prior to patch 1.9, the blade is useful for training the Two-handed skill on characters who don't often use it, because its damage is actually dependent on the One-handed skill. This will give it a significant damage bonus over other weapons while Two-handed is still low. However, for characters that use two-handed weapons normally, this weapon is a poor choice because it will not benefit from any of the progress or perks from that skill.
As the Enchanting skill advances, the blade's enchantment becomes inferior, as with a Grand or Black Soul Gem and a Fortify Enchanting potion, a weapon can easily be crafted with an Absorb Health enchantment above 30. The Ebony Blade retains the advantage of unlimited charges, however.
- The Ebony Blade shares similarities with Stormbringer, a black, runed sword from the Elric of Melnibone novels. Stormbringer strengthened its wielder by absorbing souls, including those of friends and lovers. Elric was called the Eternal Champion, a name also shared by a previous wielder of the Ebony Blade.
- Despite Farengar Secret-Fire being allegedly aware of the Blade, it can be sold to him.
This section contains bugs related to Ebony Blade (Skyrim). Before adding a bug to this list, consider the following:
|Click to see the list of bugs encountered.|