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Ebony Blade (Skyrim)

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For other uses, see Ebony Blade.
Not to be confused with Ebony Sword.

The Ebony Blade is a two-handed weapon found in Dragonsreach in Whiterun Hold. 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 itself is a Kanmuri-otoshi style katana, with the back thinning out drastically about three-quarters up the blade from the hilt.


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. Later, in the Fourth Era, it was discovered by Balgruuf the Greater of Whiterun sometime before the events of Skyrim, and he had it hidden underneath Dragonsreach ever since.


The Ebony Blade is obtained in the Daedric quest "The Whispering Door," which can be initiated after reaching level 20 and completing the Dragon Rising quest, by asking Hulda, the barkeep at The Bannered Mare in Whiterun, if she's heard any rumors. If Hulda has been killed, Ysolda, who will have since taken over the inn, will not begin the quest. In this case, it can only be started using the console command setstage DA08 10.


The blade cannot be upgraded. This is 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.


This weapon starts with a 10-point Absorb Health enchantment that can be increased by slaying friendly characters. For example, anyone whose favor has been completed or who has 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 by four points. Killing ten friendly characters maximizes its power at 30 points Absorb Health per hit.

The enchantment has unlimited uses and never needs recharging. This makes this weapon ideal for followers, especially if they frequently sustain large amounts of damage.

Mephala's voice sounds each time the enchantment improves, commenting on the progress of the blade. Her dialogue, in order, is such:

Mephala's CommentsEdit

Notice: Mephala's dialogue is radiant for each kill, though is always one of the four quotes for the 2nd - 8th kills. Only the 10th kill has a set comment.
Kill Dialogue of Mephala
2nd "Excellent work, child."
4th "I can feel their heartbreak swelling in my blade."
6th "Their tears shine the ebony to a sharpest gleam."
8th "Ah, the blood of deceit is a nourishing flow."
10th "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."

If the hilt glows red, the blade has gained power.

Potential killsEdit

Characters who say things such as, "It's a fine day with you around." or "You've been a good friend to me, that means something." are considered friendly to the Dragonborn and will count as a charge. Another indication is whether or not taking low-value items from their home counts as stealing. Anyone to whom the Dragonborn sells firewood, ore, food, or alchemical ingredients via a dialogue option (not the barter menu) will become friendly. The Dragonborn can also make friends by dropping a weapon or a piece of armor somewhere, prompting characters to approach them and ask whether or not the item is free for the taking. Saying 'yes' will make them friendly.

The following is a list of potential targets for upgrading the Ebony Blade:


Daedric questsEdit


  •  PC   Killing a friendly character with the Ebony Blade, then resurrecting them by clicking on them in the console and typing resurrect, and killing them again. The command player.placeatme xxx (xxx is the character's ID) also works.
  •  PC   Using the console command player.setrelationshiprank <RefID> <4> on any unnamed enemy NPC, like a Bandit, and killing them with the Ebony Blade will charge the weapon and not give the Dragonborn any negative effects.
  •  PC   360   PS3   Killing a friendly person and reanimate them with Reanimation Staves, Scroll of Dread Zombie, Dead Thrall or the Ritual Stone. Because these abilities do not turn them into ash when they die, the character can be repeatedly killed the required number of times. (Tested on patch Death Hound followers from Dawnguard are good victims, as they will not fight back and have little health. However, this does not appear to work on Skyrim Special Edition for PS4 (Tested on patch
  •  PC   360   PS3   To quickly charge the blade, the Dragonborn may conjure a familiar and kill it repeatedly. This provides unlimited charges and the familiars have very low health. No negative relationships will be incurred. This does not seem to work post-patch for the DLC.
  •  PC   360   PS3   To charge the blade (legitimately) without needing to kill any named characters, the Dragonborn should find the random encounter with wandering farmers, give them gold and slay them both as with other named beggars. This method can be repeated as many times as necessary. Alternatively, the two automaton followers, Steadfast Dwarven Sphere and Steadfast Dwarven Spider acquired at Kagrumez can be killed for an indefinite amount of charges, as they respawn.

Weapon classificationEdit

The blade behaves as a two-handed weapon with the following exceptions:

  • It swings much faster than two-handed weapons, and about 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.


The Ebony Blade is, in some ways, an upgraded version of the Blade of Woe; it is two-handed and has unlimited charges. Its attack speed is faster than any other two-handed weapon (about as fast as a One-Handed Sword), though it has the lowest damage per hit. The unlimited enchantment charge and heightened attack speed helps to make up for the reduced damage.

Prior to patch 1.9, the blade was useful for training the two-handed skill on those who did not often use it, because its damage was dependent on the one-handed skill. This gave it a significant damage bonus over other weapons, while the two-handed skill was still low. However, for those that normally used two-handed weapons, this weapon was poor choice, as it did not benefit from any of the progress or perks of the two-handed skill.

With patch 1.9, the Ebony Blade still retains the advantage of unlimited charges. The Ebony Blade does not affect Animunculi, as it will not steal health from them; thus, this makes it a poor choice for combat in Dwemer Ruins.


  • 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 supposedly being aware of the Blade's existence, he does not acknowledge the Dragonborn's possession of it, and it can be sold to him.
  • If the Dragonborn uses the console command coc qasmoke to teleport to the game's testing room, another version of the Ebony Blade can be found in a Dwemer cabinet. This version of the Blade has an enchantment that states that the "Victim does not treat an attack with this weapon as assault." This weapon can also be obtained through the console command player.additem 000ea29c 1.
  • The Ebony Blade has a smaller range compared to other two-handed weapons despite being just as long, or maybe slightly longer, in appearance.
  • Although patch 1.9 fixed the Ebony Blade's incorrect classification as a one-handed weapon, the Ebony Blade will still swing faster than any in-game two-handed weapon, and even surpass some one-handed weapons.
  • While in use of the Blade, it may level up two-handed, but will display a different skill increasing.
  • Progress can be observed by the console command sqv da08ebonybladetracking and looking at the "FriendsKilled_var" line.


This section contains bugs related to Ebony Blade (Skyrim). Before adding a bug to this list, consider the following:

  1. Please reload an old save to confirm if the bug is still happening.
  2. If the bug is still occurring, please post the bug report with the appropriate system template  360  / XB1  ,  PS3  / PS4  ,  PC  / MAC  , depending on which platform(s) the bug has been encountered on.
  3. Be descriptive when listing the bug and fixes, but avoid having conversations in the description and/or using first-person-anecdotes: such discussions belong on the appropriate forum board.


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