He lives in the main tower of Tel Mithryn with his apprentice, Talvas Fathryon. He also employs various workers within the settlement, including a steward, cook, and mycologist. He wears a set of Telvanni robes and shoes and carries an ebony dagger.
During this time he served as a clan leader in House Telvanni. While several of his fellow Telvanni councilors were assassinated, if the Nerevarine joined the Mages Guild.  Neloth managed to survive and went on to become the most powerful wizard of House Telvanni. Some even consider him to be the most powerful wizard in all of Morrowind.
At some point before the eruption of Red Mountain in 4E 05, Neloth left the island and moved to Solstheim, where he grew his citadel, Tel Mithryn, and the surrounding buildings with cuttings he brought from Morrowind. He also transplanted a few silt striders when he arrived, however none seem to have survived.
It was around this time he began studying the ash and molten rocks that landed on the shores of Solstheim from Red Mountain. He named them heart stones and learnt that they had the capacity to raise ash spawn from pieces of bone buried in the nearby ash. Neloth deduced that because they lay next to the Heart of Lorkhan for millennia, some vestige of its power must have seeped into them. It led him to believe they held secrets that have the potential to unlock great power.
Using his knowledge of heart stones, he created a staff enchanter, an exceptional feat beyond the skill of many wizards and mages. Powered by a large heart stone, it was capable of enchanting staves from all schools of magic, providing a heart stone was used in the imbuing process.
In addition to his arcane research, Neloth also pursued an interest in acquiring Daedric artifacts, particularly those attributed to Hermaeus Mora. He spent many years searching for the Oghma Infinium without success, however did manage to recover a Black Book, one of the many tomes of esoteric knowledge scattered throughout the world. Using the book, he located another in the ruins of Nchardak, a Dwemer ruin on the east coast of Solstheim. After exploring a small part of the ruins, he discovered the book was sealed within a protective case that he was unable to open. He elected to seal the ruins shut to keep out any meddlers until he could find a way to unlock the case.
Decades later he took on the services of a mycologist named Elynea Mothren, who became responsible for nurturing his tower, and later an apprentice named Ildari Sarothril. Ildari was headstrong with a strong interest in magic, however her lust for power caused her to continually push Neloth to teach her more.
Continuing his research into heart stones, Neloth began performing necropsies on spriggans, which led him to believe that a heart stone could be implanted in a person's chest, granting them great power. He considered replacing his own heart with a heart stone, however Ildari was coaxed into becoming his test subject with promises of power and glory. Neloth maintains the idea that Ildari volunteered to let him operate on her first, however it is suggested that she actually had no choice in the matter. In 4E 181, Neloth performed the surgery that resulted in Ildari's heart being replaced with a heart stone. The experiment failed and Ildari died as a result. Neloth, mildly annoyed by the setback, had her buried in the cemetery behind Tel Mithryn. It was after this he took on Talvas Fathryon as his new apprentice, as he continued his research.
Neloth is an eccentric, self-absorbed, tyrannical taskmaster with little to no regard for the safety of his apprentices or employees. He cares little for sentimentality or manners, not because he deliberately sets out to be malicious, rather because he sees little value in it. A fact that makes many of his workers disgruntled.
He views gratitude as a tool for the weak and foolish but is not above rewarding those who perform their duties admirably. In fact the only thing that seems to garner his attention is when efforts made are not wasted, believing that if a person fails, that is because they simply did not try hard enough.
He almost never accepts responsibility for his own flaws and does not accept the limits of others. He will often blame them for anything that goes wrong, yet is a profound genius at the art of enchanting and many other magical fields, but he has a special skill with enchantment in general, being a staff enchanter himself. He is also a collector of magical staffs, especially those crafted by Azra Nightwielder and has a strong affinity for canis root tea.
Though many view him with disdain, none can deny his mastery over the arcane was a trait that he had earned, entitling him to his arrogance.
Neloth is initially found at the Earth Stone, observing the entranced townsfolk of Raven Rock. He will remain here until he is spoken to or once the quest "Dragonborn" has been completed. He then moves to his home in Tel Mithryn where his daily schedule focuses mainly around his work. He often paces back and forth around his laboratory, sits down to read or engages in a brief conversation with his apprentice, Talvas Fathryon. He also casts the Candlelight or Fast Healing spell on himself from time to time.
Despite there being several beds in Tel Mithryn, Neloth never seems to sleep. A trait best summarized by Talvas when he remarks: "I don't know how he does it, but he never rests for even a moment.", although on other occasions he reveals that Neloth apparently sleeps with.
If approached at the Earth Stone, he'll ask why the Dragonborn is here. If asked about Miraak, he mentions that Miraak has been dead for thousands of years. He then suggests the Temple of Miraak may hold some answers. See this section for the full dialogue.
Upon cleansing the sacred stones, Storn Crag-Strider suggests Neloth may know the location of the Black Book that gave Miraak power over dragons. Neloth reveals his vast knowledge of the esoteric tomes and explains that one such book is located in the Dwarven ruin of Nchardak. Neloth travels with the Dragonborn to the sunken city to recover the Black Book from its depths.
Neloth offers the Dragonborn to become a test subject for a new spell that supposedly increases the target's vigor. Once the spell is cast, he remarks that if any side effects are apparent, he should be notified straight away.
The spell itself provides a small boost to health, however coming into contact with water permanently reduces health a small amount, until Neloth is informed and the spell is reversed.
Following his study into the ash from Red Mountain, Neloth explains that he is running low on heart stone and requires the Dragonborn bring him one.
Neloth's steward, Varona Nelas, has gone missing. After some investigation it is discovered that she was attacked and killed on a supply run to Raven Rock. Neloth, mildly annoyed by the inconvenience, tasks the Dragonborn to find him a suitable candidate from Raven Rock. It is later revealed that his steward's death was not merely bad luck, but something more sinister was afoot.
Continuing his research into heart stones, Neloth reveals he is having difficulties with his experiments. He explains that Forsworn Briarhearts use a technique which involves removing their own heart and replacing it with a large briar seed. He believes this puts their life spark in direct connection to the natural forces. Neloth wishes to mimic the procedure with a heart stone, but instead he seeks to connect a living being to the forces of the Red Mountain.
In order to learn more about the methods Briarheart's use, he asks the Dragonborn to examine one with the aid of a memory trace spell he casts beforehand. He also requires the Briarheart to be killed so that his heart can be examined properly.
Following the death of his steward, ash spawn attacks and the withering of his tower, Neloth asks the Dragonborn to investigate the matter further as he suspects someone is responsible. After uncovering the empty grave of his former apprentice, Ildari Sarothril, Neloth discovers that she is indeed still alive and is likely the one behind the attacks.
After casting a divination, Neloth reveals her location and asks the Dragonborn to go kill his former apprentice. Upon completion Neloth makes the Dragonborn a member of House Telvanni. If asked about what this means, he replies: "For now, not much. But in a few decades when I return to Vvardenfell, you would be seen as Morrowind nobility. In the mean time, we would keep a bed and chest here for you."
Continuing his research into the arcane, Neloth believes he has discovered a new form of silence. While some philosophers postulate seven orders of silence, Neloth believe there's an eighth, however he requires a test subject to test this.
Allowing him to precede unexpectedly results in blindness. Neloth realizes the error and comments that writhing tentacles have appeared where the eyes once were. Eventually, the spell wears off and rewards the Dragonborn with some gold as a way of thanks.
In a break from his ash research, Neloth makes a more personal request. He explains he is a collector of magical staffs, and has a sentimental value for those made by Azra Nightwielder. Through some divination he believes he has located one and would like it retrieved. Once Azra's staff is retrieved, Neloth rewards the Dragonborn with a staff from his own collection.Afa-Saryat's book, Wind and Sand. According to one of his associates, he has located the book and asks the Dragonborn to retrieve it for him.
After acquiring the book and returning it to Neloth, he will remark that although the book was not the answer he was looking for, he can still adapt the knowledge he has learned into a spell that creates a whirlwind of vortex energy. He mentions he will write out the specifics and a copy of the tome will be available to buy from Talvas in a few days.
Once the main questline has been completed, visiting Neloth in Tel Mithryn results in him approaching and remarking: "Hold still. Let me get a good look at you."
The following conversation then takes place:
What are you looking for?: "Incipient madness. Loss of self-awareness. Black spots in the whites of the eyes. Any of the documented indications of Hermaeus Mora's permanent influence. Hm, no, you look fine. At least no different than when I first saw you."
You don't need to worry about me: "I wasn't worried. Just interested. I don't get to observe first-hand many people who've spoken to Hermeaus Mora."
Don't you want to know what happened with Miraak?: "Who? Oh him. Well, I assume you killed him. Or Hermaeus Mora turned on him when you looked like the winning bet. Or a bit of both. Miraak's influence has vanished from Solstheim, so I assumed you had handled things. Why, did something interesting happen?"
- No, nothing interesting. I just killed Miraak and saved Solstheim: "Well, that is what you hero types do, isn't it? I wasn't expecting anything less."
- You don't seem very grateful: "I don't recall asking you to kill Miraak. That was your own project. And now I'm not even mentioning the fact that now we'll never know what would have happened when Miraak returned. Although... from all indications he could have proved a serious nuisance. So, yes, I am grateful that you dealt with him."
At this stage, Neloth can end the conversation in one of two ways. If all Black Books have been found prior to this point, he replies:
If some Black Books are still to be found, he replies with:
This in turn begins the side quest Lost Knowledge:
Once the book has been recovered, Neloth grants a reward and makes a copy for himself, remarking that it is far too dangerous to carry the real book around.
If asked about Enchanting training, Neloth reveals himself to be a true master of the art. If Enchanting skill level is less than 90, he reluctantly agrees to give a lesson. If skill level is equal to or higher than 90, he becomes defensive and refuses to train the Dragonborn.
A sharp contrast to all other skill trainers who, in the same circumstances, simply state that don't have the knowledge to train the Dragonborn any further:
Can you train me in Enchanting?:
- Enchanting skill < 90: "Don't be ridiculous. Of course I can. The question is, should I? I suppose if it's going to be done right, I'll have to do it."
- Enchanting skill ≥ 90: "I could, but I won't. It wouldn't do to have you become better than me after all."
In addition to providing training, Neloth also serves as a magical goods merchant. Most notably, he sells unenchanted staves, in addition to regular enchanted staves and soul gems. Provided he has granted use of his staff enchanter, the unenchanted staves can be enchanted.
He typically carries 1000 on hand for trading, but this can be increased to 2000 with the Master Trader perk.
In battle, Neloth proves himself to be a powerful mage. He typically activates his Whirlwind Cloak and Ebonyflesh as battle begins, and the core of arsenal consists of shock-related spells, such as Chain Lightning and Thunderbolt, which are 50% more powerful thanks to his Augmented Shock perk. He also conjures a powerful Ash Guardian to aid him, which benefits from his Atromancy and Elemental Potency perks.
His robes grant him 150% increased magicka regeneration, while his shoes give him a 70% resistance to shock. His passive Magic Resistance perk blocks 20% of incoming spell's effects. Should his large magicka supply run dry, he switches to his ebony dagger.
Spells and perks
Neloth can be first encountered at the Earth Stone during the quest Dragonborn, where he will give the following dialogue. However if this first initial meeting is skipped, he can later be met at his home in Tel Mithryn after the first quest has been completed, where his dialogue will vary slightly.
Traveling to the Earth Stone, several townsfolk can be seen working on the structure. Neloth, who is observing nearby, will approach and ask:
"You there... You dont quite seem to be in the same state as the others. Very interesting. May I ask what it is you're doing here?"
I'm looking for someone named Miraak: "Miraak...Miraak... It sounds familiar but I cant quite place... Oh. Wait. I recall. But that makes very little sense. Miraak's been dead for thousands of years."
What does that mean?: "I'm not sure, but it is fascinating, isn't it. Perhaps it has some relation to what's going on here. Quite unexpected. I'm afraid I can't give you any answers. But there are ruins of an ancient temple of Miraak's toward the center of the island. If I were you, I'd look there."
He can then be questioned further:
Who are you? What are you doing here?: "It's true that I normally prefer to stay home and conduct my research in peace. Everything's so much more convenient there. But, given that something seems to be taking control of the minds of all the inhabitants, I thought it worth investigating."
Why aren't you affected like everyone else?: "I have gone to some pains to ensure that I am immune to many forms of control. I cannot say for certain which is currently protecting me, but it bears further investigation at some point."
What are these people doing?: "Building something, clearly. And yet they don't seem to have much to say about it. I'm very interested to find out what happens when they finish."
Have you tried to stop this?: "Certainly not! Doing so would interfere with whatever is going on, and I would be unable to see how this all turns out."
By breaking the spell, he remarks: "Ah, so you appear to be able to resist the effect by exerting your will. Fascinating! I would not advise touching the stone again. The effects of repeated contact could be...Unless of course you'd like to contribute to my investigation. It could be very enlightening to observe you."
Either after the meeting at the Earth Stone or once the quest Dragonborn has been completed, Neloth returns to Tel Mithryn. If he was met during the aforementioned quest he asks: "You again. Didn't I see you in Raven Rock?" . If this is first time meeting him, he will instead remark: "I don't recall inviting you into my tower. I do hope you make this worth my while."
Either way, the next set of non quest-related dialogue options becomes available:
What is this building?: "This is a Telvanni tower. It's my citadel, grown from the spores of the giant fungus trees found in Morrowind. Back in the homeland, there are other Telvanni wizards that have them as well."
Two possible options are presented:
- Telvanni? What are the Telvanni?: "The Telvanni are the master wizards of Morrowind. The greatest of us grow magical towers like this one from the mighty fungus trees. Together we form House Telvanni, one of the great houses of Morrowind. The great houses rule what is left of our once proud nation."
- I've heard of the House Telvanni of Morrowind: "Of course you have. Everyone has heard of the master wizards of Morrowind. We are one of the great houses that rule Morrowind."
After this response, it's possible to give him one of the following three replies. Two of the options that appear depend upon the progress of the College of Winterhold questline:
- You must be almost as powerful as Savos Aren of Winterhold: "Savos? Ha! He wouldn't be fit to be my apprentice. Of course he does have a knack for wards that would be handy to learn. If you see him, let him know that I might be willing to take him on as my apprentice. For a price of course."
"The Eye of Magnus" has been completed:
- As the Archmage of Winterhold, you and I should share our secrets: "Winterhold? That small college that is falling into the Sea of Ghosts? You're the one that recovered the Staff of Magnus. Impressive. Talvas should finish his apprenticeship in a couple of decades. Come see me then. I think I could teach you a trick or two."
The following option is always present, regardless of college questline progress:
- You must be a very powerful wizard: "I am likely the greatest wizard you will ever meet. Who else do you think could create a staff enchanter? If you make yourself useful around here, I might just let you use it."
The Sun Stone
What are these Black Books? Where do they come from?: "Hermaeus Mora has always tried to seduce mortals into his service with the lure of forbidden knowledge. Where the Black Books actually came from... no one really knows. Some appear to have been written in the past, others might be from the future. Apparently time is more malleable if you're a Daedric Prince of fate and destiny."
Any time after first meeting Neloth, he can be questioned about the province of Morrowind. He replies with one of seven possible answers, however he can be repeatedly asked the initial question.
What can you tell me about Morrowind?:
- "You are too young to remember the Nerevarine. He defeated Dagoth Ur and saved us all from the blight."
- "When the city of Vivec was destroyed, it took decades for us to rebuild. We are still but a shadow of our glorious past, but some day we will rise again."
- "There is the big island of Vvardenfell, and the coastal mainland. House Telvanni has it's properties on Vvardenfell. I've never been to the mainland myself."
- "Red Mountain dominates the island. Every now and then ash and debris from an eruption land on our shores."
- "It's the homeland of the dunmer. The lesser races call us dark elves. We built great works there, like Vivec and Ald'ruhn. Many of them are destroyed now, either by Red Mountain or the argonian invasion."
- "The ignorant think it's only a place of ash and lava. It has rolling green plains and swamps and verdant hills too."
- "It is the only place where silt striders can be found. Although I managed to transplant a few here when I arrived."
Neloth and Talvas occasionally partake in several brief conversations that can be heard when visiting Tel Mithryn. They typically result in Neloth berating his apprentice for one reason or another.
Neloth: "Good, good. As soon as I'm done here, I'll try it out."
Talvas: "May I keep this one, master?"
Neloth: "We'll see. If the power levels aren't too high you may have it."
Neloth: "That was before you ruined that staff. Fix the staff and I'll teach you the spell."
Talvas: "Yes, master. Thank you, master. I'll fix it right away."
Talvas: "Thank you, master. It's all because of your brilliant teaching."
Neloth: "Don't think your false flattery will work on me, Talvas. You're still going to give me that skin sample."
Talvas: "Yes, master."
Soul gem blunder
Talvas: "Yes, master. Although the grand soul gem only has a common soul in it."
Neloth: "Idiot! Those are hard to find. Next time don't fill it at all if you can't do it properly."
Raven Rock supplies
|Varona:||"Master Neloth, I'm preparing for a trip to Raven Rock to pick up supplies. I have your list of soul gems, but nothing else."|
|Neloth:||"Hmm? Oh. Raven Rock. Right. I need soul gems..."|
|Varona:||"I know that. What else?"|
|Neloth:||"Maybe some daedra heart. Elynea never seems to stock it. Let me get you the rest of the list tomorrow. I'm just too busy to think about this right now."|
|Varona:||"That's what you said yesterday! I really can't put this trip off for much longer."|
Silt strider traders
|Varona:||"Master Neloth, the silt strider traders just dropped off some supplies."|
|Neloth:||"What did they bring? Books? Soul gems?"|
|Varona:||"Mostly books. There were a couple of soul gems, some ingredients for Elynea, and some strange wood."|
|Neloth:||"Ah! The wood is for the staffs. Put them away when you get a chance. But don't get in my way."|
Once Drovas Relvi becomes Neloth's new steward, the following conversation can be heard:
Drovas: "I'll go fetch some, Master Neloth. Canis root, right?"
Neloth: "Yes, yes. Canis root tea. And don't let Ulves water it down."
|"Do you have a death wish?"||Attempting to pickpocket him|
|"I wouldn't if I were you. A wizard's pockets can be more dangerous than a dragon's mouth."|
|"Keep your prying hands away from my secrets."|
|"Get your hand out of my pocket!"|
|"Does stealing make you feel less impotent?"||Stealing from Tel Mithryn|
|"I see you have little in the way of morals."|
|"Thief! I'll teach you."|
|"So you think you can steal from me?"|
|"Clumsy oaf!"||Bumping into an object|
|"Watch out! My equipment is fragile."|
|"Watch where you're going."||Bumping into him|
|"Yes, yes. You're Dragonborn. We're all very impressed."||Using a shout|
|"Was that really necessary?"|
|"What a waste of a good specimen."||Inspecting a corpse|
|"Hmm. I'll have to get someone to bring this to my lab."|
|"Well, my pretties. What shall we do today? Maybe see if you can regenerate your fingers?"||When near his spriggan room in Tel Mithryn|
|"There must be a way. I'll find it if I have to vivisect every spriggan on this island."|
|"I admire the Dwemer skill but it can get tiresome."||Encountering/defeating a Dwemer automaton|
|"Try putting yourself back together now."|
|"Another one for the scrap heap of history."|
|"More of these things?"|
|"There seems to be an inexhaustible supply of these Dwemer contraptions."|
|"I think they may be rebuilding themselves while we're not looking."|
|"Get out of here before I toss you out."||Trespassing|
|"Leave, or I'll be forced to show you the true power of a Telvanni wizard."|
|"Does it bother you to be trespassing right now?"|
|"I'll make you pay for that!"||Assaulting him|
|"You dare attack me?"|
|"What do you think you're doing?"||Picking up an object|
|"That belongs to me."|
|"A werewolf? Here?"||Transforming into a werewolf|
|"Now that my tower is healed, I can finish some of my more delicate experiments."||Completion of Healing a House.|
|"How do you like my new laboratory? I use it to dissect spriggans. I've learned so much from them."|
|"Talvas, I think I'll start with the burnt spriggan. They don't squirm as much."|
|"Where is that lazy steward of mine? Varona! No, wait. She's dead. Drovas!"||Completion of Reluctant Steward.|
|"My new steward is...acceptable. If only he made better tea."|
|"First it's ash spawn attacks. Then my home withers. It's almost like someone is out to get me."||During Old Friends.|
|"Everything that can go wrong is going wrong. Ash spawn attacks, my house, and even my steward is assassinated."|
|"It's as if Tel Mithryn is cursed. Spoiled food, ash spawn attacks, my servants constantly getting sick. What's next?"|
|"Things have been much calmer since you disposed of Ildari."||Completion of Old Friends.|
|"It was fascinating to watch those tentacles grow out of your eyes."||Completion of A Sight for Sore Eyes.|
|"All of my people have left to work on that sacred stone. It's quite fascinating. Annoying, but fascinating."||At night, before completion of Cleansing the Stones.|
|"It's good to have everyone not running off to that damn sacred stone every night. I suppose I have you to thank for that."||Completion of Cleansing the Stones.|
|"By Malacath's toenails, where did that come from?"||Encountering Krosulhah during The Path of Knowledge.|
|"Miraak was a formidable opponent. I wonder what he would have been like as my apprentice."||Completion of At the Summit of Apocrypha.|
|"Defeating Miraak was an impressive feat. I'm curious to see if Hermaeus Mora seeks you out because of it."|
|"If you're going to be up here, stay out of my way."|
|"Do you need all your toes? I could really use a fresh toe for...nevermind. You aren't moldy enough."|
|"I wonder if a dragon could be captured alive? It would make a fascinating test subject."|
|"The ash from Red Mountain holds secrets. Secrets I mean to uncover."|
|"Now where did I put...Oh, yeah."|
|"Finally. I can get back to work."|
|"Are we done? I thought so."|
|"That's that then."|
|"Fire, storm and ice!"||When initiating battle|
|"By the fires of Red Mountain!"|
|"So you chose today to die..."|
|"By Malacath's hairy knuckles, you'll pay for that!"||Upon being hit.|
|"Uh...now it's my turn!"|
|"You are no match for my magic!"||"Time to die!"||Attacking an enemy|
|"For House Telvanni!"||"Die N'wah!"|
|"I've just the spell for you!"||"Damn fetcher!"|
|"Fear my power!"||"Learn the power of the Telvanni!"|
|"Dagon's eyeballs, but you're an ugly one, aren't you?"||Taunting an enemy|
|"I am a master wizard of House Telvanni!"|
|"You cannot best my magic!"|
|"The very elements are at my command!"|
|"So, you are smart enough to surrender to a master wizard of the House Telvanni."||Surrendering to him|
|"I should kill you anyway, but that would be boring."|
|"I command powers you can only dream of!"||Fighting a Dragon|
|"You are no match for me, dragon!"|
|"You can only hide so long."||Searching for a hidden enemy|
|"Some sort of trickery is at work here."|
|"I'll find you."|
|"You can't hide from a Telvanni wizard!"|
|"So you want to play hide and seek, eh?"|
|"Aha!"||Finding a hidden enemy|
|"Thought you could hide, eh?"|
|"So that's where you went!"|
|"There you are!"|
|"Just the shadows playing tricks."||"Is someone there?"||Hearing a noise when hostile|
|"Hmm. Nothing, I guess."||"Come out this instant!"|
|"I could have sworn...oh well."||"Yes? Who's there?"|
|"What was that?"||"Hmm? Show yourself!"|
|"Huh?"||"What was that?"|
|"Ha! I guess they fled."||Dismissing a noise when hostile|
|"Well. Nobody is here now."|
|"Must have scared them away."|
|"No match for my magic."||Defeating an enemy|
|"Should have known better than to challenge a master wizard of the House Telvanni."|
|"Hardly a challenge."|
- Although he appears as a master enchanter, his in-game Enchanting skill is only at level 15.
- Together with Adril Arano, he is the only character in the game possessing his voice.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 Dialogue with Talvas Fathryon
- ↑ Events of The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 Dialogue with Elynea Mothren
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 Dialogue with Neloth
- ↑ Dialogue with Neloth during The Path of Knowledge
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Dialogue with Ulves Romoran
- ↑ Ildari's Journal, vol. I
- ↑ Dialogue with Neloth during Old Friends
- ↑ Director notes from game data relating to the dialogue: "Fortunately Ildari offered to let me operate on her first." reveal "subtle emphasis on "offered", indicating that she didn't really have much choice."