"The Empire exists because we allow it to exist, and I'm here to make sure the Jarl of Markarth remembers that."

TES5 Ondolemar theempireexists

Ondolemar is a Thalmor Justiciar located in the Understone Keep within the city of Markarth, the capital of The Reach.


Ondolemar is the head of the Justiciars in Skyrim, and is charged with advancing Thalmor interests in Skyrim's major city of Markarth, seeking to persecute all Talos worshippers within the city. He resides in Understone Keep, where he paces back and forth near the Jarl's throne under the escort of two Thalmor Soldiers. When the Stormcloaks attack Markarth, he is nowhere to be seen.


When spoken to, he speaks of his belief in the superiority of Mer over Men, of his contempt of the Empire, and of his belief that Talos does not deserve a place within the pantheon of the Divines, as Talos was a human before his ascendancy. He firmly believes that all Talos worship in Skyrim can be purged, despite the "stubbornness" of the Nords.


If the Dragonborn has been killing Justiciars before meeting Ondolemar, he may attack on sight, and the city guards may not intervene. If Ondolemar dies or is killed, a courier may deliver a Letter of Inheritance to the Dragonborn from Ondolemar, provided that his personal quest was finished beforehand. The amount bequeathed is 100 GoldIcon, 10 of which is taxed by the Jarl's court.

Search and SeizureEdit

Length: 0:03
Description: Few pleasures in life

Ondolemar sends the Dragonborn to locate evidence of Ogmund's Talos worship. Complying with his request grants a leveled amount of gold and Ondolemar's friendship, which can be utilized later if so desired.

Diplomatic ImmunityEdit

He can also appear at Elenwen's party at the Thalmor Embassy, and may offer them assistance in the form of a distraction. He can be persuaded to accuse Razelan of speaking foully of the Thalmor.


If the Dragonborn has sided with the Stormcloaks during the Civil War, or has surrendered Markarth to them during the Season Unending negotiations, a coffin in Understone Keep's Hall of the Dead can be found which contains Hooded Thalmor Robes and Ogmund's Amulet of Talos (provided it was stolen for Ondolemar). This suggests that the Thalmor Justiciar was either slain during the Stormcloaks' invasion of Markarth, or that he was executed shortly thereafter.


Ondolemar knows the following spells:





  • "You have the honor of addressing a member of the Thalmor. Bask in it."
  • "We intend to prove the superiority of Mer over Man, one century at a time."
  • "It's only a matter of time before your whole rotten Empire collapses of its own decay. No offense."
  • "The Dominion is here, and we are watching you."
  • "As if this craggy, wretch of a city could give birth to a superiorly bred Mer such as myself. No, I'm not from Markarth."
  • "The Empire exists because we allow it to exist, and I'm here to make sure the Jarl of Markarth remembers that."
  • "There is peace now, and that peace will continue for as long as it suits our needs. But make no mistake, this is not a peace forged out of necessity between rival nations of equal strength. It is more like the calm between storms. And the next storm, I think, will be far deadlier than the last."
  • "The Thalmor know how to deal with Talos worshippers."
  • "If you see any signs of Talos worship, it's your obligation to report them to me."
  • "The Aldmeri Dominion is the only thing keeping the Empire on its feet."
  • "This war is such nonsense. All this trouble over their false human god."


  • Completing Diplomatic Immunity after his side quest makes him speak to the Dragonborn with disdain, rather than in a friendly manner. If the Dragonborn has completed Diplomatic Immunity and then gives him Ogmund's amulet, he will still be friendly.
  • Killing Ondolemar in front of witnesses will only result in a 40 gold bounty for assault.
  • If Ondolemar is killed and then Dead Thralled, his Thalmor Soldiers will follow him around Markarth. However, attacking non-hostile characters will cause the soldiers to turn hostile.
  • If Markarth is handed over to the Stormcloaks during the quest Season Unending, he may still walk around with his soldiers as if it is still controlled by the Empire.
  • Ondolemar will only provide a distraction during Diplomatic Immunity if he has been helped beforehand, and if the player convinces him that they only want to play "a joke" on someone. Note that a 50 in Speech is needed to convince him to help.
  • Ondolemar is the only member of the Thalmor to also utilize frost-based magic, as all other Thalmor only use shock and fire Destruction spells.
  • Killing anyone in Understone Keep, including the dogs, will make Ondolemar and his soldiers (as well as the rest of the Keep) hostile, even though he is a member of the Thalmor and openly states his dislike of the Empire. Sneaking and undetected, or having a follower kill, is the only way to prevent hostilities.
  • Although he asks the player to report any worship of Talos to him, it is impossible to tell him of the temple of Talos just down the hill, or any other signs of Talos worship other than the quest he sends the player on.
  • Ondolemar's mouth is unique to him, and as such it is not available for use in character creation.
  • Surprisingly, refusing to help him persecute Ogmund actually doesn't result in hostility. Saying, "Not right now." when he asks for help merely causes him to sneer and grumble, saying, "Hmph. Fine." If one wants to do the quest later, they will have to ask him again about Talos worship and why it is outlawed, and he will ask for the player's help once more.
  • Ondolemar's guards are randomized upon first visit, meaning that they will either be both men, both women, or a man and a woman. However, unlike other Thalmor Justiciars, their equipment does not level with the player, i.e., if the player waits until levels 36+ to visit Understone Keep, the Thalmor guards will not be wearing Glass Armor and wielding Glass Weapons, but still use Elven Light Armor and Steel Weapons.


Start a Discussion Discussions about Ondolemar

  • Marriage to Ondolemar?

    6 messages
    • There are some mod's that aim to allow any and all adult NPC's as marriage options, and paired with the follower commentary overhall...
    • Ondolemar not available for marriage or a follower wish he was unless someone mods him then might be possible anything is possible
  • Ondolemar

    190 messages
    • @Leea and Ashley. If you use the mod an altmer intrigue and side with the stormcloaks you get a quest to save Ondolemar. You also have to compl...
    • Nah. I can't. I play on Xbox. Sounds great, though. =)