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Protonymics and neonymics, often simply called nymics,[1] make up an entity's incantatory name—sometimes referred to as a true name, which the Daedra are defined by. Daedra cannot abandon or change their Nymics, and their true names endure even when their physical form is annihilated. Daedra are bound by their Nymics, and cannot change beyond their nature. As Daedra reconstitute exactly as according to their Nymic if they are destroyed, Nymics can be thought of as a pattern or formula that defines the being created when it manifests itself from the eternal chaos of Oblivion. Daedra fear the possibility of an enemy learning their Nymic, and guard them preciously.[2] Daedra bitterly resent those who exercise power over them by using their Nymic. It's exceedingly dangerous to even write a Daedra's Nymic, as should that Daedra learn even part of its name has been recorded somewhere, it will stop at nothing to destroy the writing and punish the mortal who dared to set it down.[3]

In general, simple-minded Daedra have a single Nymic, while Daedra of stronger will and purpose have two, three, or even more Nymics. A mortal mage must make use of each one in order to bend the Daedra to their will. The first and simplest Nymic is the protonymic. Some scholars believe the protonymic is a description of kindred or species for creatures who lack the self-awareness to identify themselves as individuals, such as daedrats. More sophisticated Daedra possess a neonymic as well as a protonymic. Creatures such as Dremora, Skaafin, or Watchers can be checked (or angered) by the use of their protonymic alone, but a summoner must also use the creature's neonymic to be certain of banishing it. Many intelligent Daedra also possess tribunymics and hieronymics that indicate the creature's affiliations and its rank. To a Daedra, these are more than mere titles, as they are integral parts of the creature's identity. It is unknown whether a summoner needs to know a Daedra's tribunymics and hieronymics when summoning them.[3]

Nymics are employed as the focus for incantatory magic, allowing the user to gain substantial control over whoever the Nymic belongs to, typically by summoning or banishment.[4] With the right sort of magic, it is possible to alter a Nymic, and in turn, alter the Daedra defined by it. A truly capable mage who learns a Daedra's complete Nymic could change its loyalties, limit its powers, anchor it into a different physical form (such as an object of some kind), or simply disperse it altogether. The more powerful the Daedra and the more complex the nymic, the more difficult it is to carry out such alterations.[2] However, if the entity possesses both a protonymic and a neonymic, speaking only one of them bears little to no effect.[4][5]

The invocation of an immortal Daedra's true name drains its "vital force" into Oblivion, which forces the entity to follow. It remains there until its vital force replenishes itself, a state which is described as "somewhat analogous to sleep for mortals". But as Daedra do not require sleep, it is viewed by them as a state "as close to the terror and despair of death" as they can experience.[6]

One historical usage of an 'incantatory name' was in the banishment of the Daedric Prince Mehrunes Dagon by an Apprentice during the invasion of the Battlespire in 3E 398. The sorcerer Chimere Graegyn had previously invoked the Prince's protonymic at some point before 3E 172; over two hundred years prior.[7] Lord Dagon's full incantatory name (as recorded) is Lehkelogah, Djehkeleho-dehbe-effehezepeh. In addition to this, the Apprentice used the neonymics of three Daedra Lords, all of which were recorded within the notes of Dagon's lieutenant, Grand Vizier Imago Storm.[8][9][10]

Bosmer priests known as Namespinners can perceive another person's protonymic, unweave it slightly and then chant a new suffix into it in order to alter the physical form of a person. This ability can be used to give antlers to Bosmer who are deemed worthy of this decoration.[UOL 1]

Related TermsEdit

An Ambition using Mehrunes Dagon's egonymic to banish him from Nirn
  • An egonymic is a stronger, more potent version of a nymic. It is possible that only the Daedric Princes possess egonymics.[1] The egonymic serves as an additional layer of protection against adversaries who think to compel such a being to do their bidding. They are powerful and guarded with extreme care.[3] The Longhouse Emperors once entered into a bargain with Mehrunes Dagon whereby Dagon's egonymic was split into four parts and hidden within four mortal infants known as the Four Ambitions, granting them untold powers of destruction. Following the fall of the Longhouse dynasty, Dagon attempted to recover his egonymic by locating the Ambitions and harvesting the power they had nurtured. He planned to use this power to merge Nirn with his plane of the Deadlands, but an Ambition named Mairead instead used Dagon's egonymic to banish him from Nirn. His egonymic was subsequently stolen by Lyranth the Foolkiller.[11]
  • The term nymic-path is referenced within Commentaries on the Mysterium Xarxes, Book 3, but its meaning is unknown.[12]
  • Daedric clans are known to have protracted tribunymics which are never spoken or revealed lest they be used as a weapon against them.[13]
  • Another related term is paleonymic, a name which can be used to bind a Daedra.[14][13]
  • Hieronymics are the classifications that Daedra use for each other (such as names and titles). They are supposedly outside of mortal understanding, as mortals don't live long enough to understand their nuances.[13]
  • Harmonic Astronymics is an ancient Dwemer text which seemingly deals with the constellations and how to harness their power.[15]
  • The term chrononymic is used in association with Sotha Sil (such as 'chrononymic will').[16] It also appears to be used in the context of Sotha Sil banishing Mehrunes Dagon.[17]
  • Logonymic Wards are used by Hermaeus Mora in the Bastion Nymic as a defense system. During Vaermina and Peryite's invasion of Apocrypha, the wards were hijacked by the Princes' Heralds to defend themselves. This was stopped by the Vestige.[18]


  • The true name of one of Vaermina's pets, a Daedric spirit called the 'Omen of Madness', is Ykal.[19]
  • Part of Malacath's true name is on the Brutal Bands.[20]
  • The topic of nymics was discussed by members of Lusty Argonian Historical Society in Frostfall 3E 432. The main point of the debate was whether a Daedra's protonymic changes or remains constant. They concluded that neonymics likely change or adjust every time a Daedra reforms, as no Daedric Princes have yet been enslaved through the use of their known neonymic.[UOL 2]

See AlsoEdit