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Lore: Factions: S
Skaal Village circa 4E 201
We are bound to this land, like a great pine with roots that run as deep as the tree is tall. - Frea, Skaal Shaman[1]

The Skaal are an offshoot tribe of Nords living in a village in northeastern Solstheim. They are known as a trusting and hospitable people, welcoming strangers into their village without any suspicion. Their village is located to the east of the Isild River, along the Felsaad Coast just north of Lake Fjalding. The Skaal believe Solstheim was originally part of Skyrim, which was turned into an artificial island during a climactic battle between Dragon Cult loyalists and rebels, with the Skaal being descended from the loyalist faction. Multiple Dragon Cult ruins were uncovered during the Fourth Era, which included carvings that corroborated the oral history preserved by the Skaal. [2] The scholar Tharstan came to the conclusion that the legend described in the Guardian and the Traitor was likely true with the additional archaeological evidence supporting it, and the Skaal formed a distinct culture overtime thanks to the isolation gained from the conflict. [3]

The Skaal are self-sufficient, with the land providing all they require. As such, they rarely accept coin in trade from travelers.[1]


Though they are Nords by race, the Skaal embrace their own culture and religion, based around worship of the All-Maker.[4] The Skaal are animistic, not monotheistic.[UOL 1] They worship the island's wolves and bears, and are known to perform ritual sacrifice by feeding those sentenced to death to the ceremonial Caenlorn Wolves.[5] They believe when something dies, be it an animal or a person, the spirit of the deceased is returned to the All-Maker, who then reforms it into a new being and returns it to the mortal plane, to live out a new life, in a new body. As such, the Skaal do not view death the same way as other Nords. All life is sacred to the Skaal, and they try to live in harmony with nature, impacting their environment as little as possible. They hunt deer, bear, horker, and muskrey, only to the extent necessary for survival, never for enjoyment or practice, and gather their firewood from dead trees that have already fallen.[4][6] The antithesis of the All-Maker is a being known as the Adversary. The Adversary has many aspects, each one of them designed to test the Skaal, to push them so that they do not become lazy and weak. One aspect of the Adversary is Thartaag, the World-Devourer, likely the Skaal's version of Alduin, the World-Eater. Legend says that Thartaag will return at the End of Seasons, and bring an end to all of creation.[7]


The Skaal also recongnize Hircine as an enemy. He is a demon god whose coming is predicted by the Bloodmoon Prophecy, which foretells when he will host the Hunter's Game on Nirn. During this, he walks the lands with his Hounds and chooses which men shall become hares in his hunt.[8] His children, the Lycanthropes, are viewed as twisted mockeries of the All-Maker's noble creatures.[9] They believe that Man was not meant to live a dual life as both rational being and animal.[8]


Stalhrim deposit

The Skaal consider Stalhrim to be holy and infused with divine power, and at one point shunned its usage.[10][11][12][13] They also believe the art of forging Stalhrim into weapons and armor is sacred, and certain members of the Skaal were charged as keepers of this ancient tradition.[14] As such, knowledge of stalhrim smithing is very rare and typically known only to the Skaal. However, local Nords and the warriors of Thirsk have also been known to possess such knowledge.[15][16] The Mace of Aevar Stone-Singer, a prized Skaal artifact, is made from stalhrim.[17]


In the mid-Second Era, Skaal "Frostcaster" shamans made extensive use of Stalhrim by decoratively incorporating the material into their arms and armor. These Frostcasters specialised in Frost Magic in veneration of the All-Maker. King Logrolf of Windhelm was known to have a display of Frostcaster clothing, which was recorded by the famed Imperial Ethnographer Doctor Alfidia Lupus on a visit to his Embassy.[18] The shamans of the Skaal tribe domesticated the Snow Leopard Sabres as mounts, seeking to keep them exclusive.[19]


Early in the third century of the Third Era, a group of Skaal left the village, hoping to return more to their roots. These Skaal were led by Hrothmund the Red, and founded Thirsk Mead Hall, a settlement on the southern shore of Lake Fjalding[20] (though some local Nords believe the history of the hall dates back to the late Second Era[21]). There, they lived like the Nords of old, hunting and fighting without restraint, with the mightiest warrior rising to leadership.[22]

Skaal LegendsEdit

The TraitorEdit

According to legend, long ago the world was ruled by dragons, who enslaved the race of man and forced them to build fantastic temples in their honor. Directing the slaves in their name were the Dragon Priests, a group of men who worshipped the dragons and were given power in exchange for their devotion. These priests were powerful mages, and had the gift of the Thu'um. One of these dragon priests, known only as the Traitor, was seduced by Herma-Mora, the Skaal's name for the Daedric Prince Hermaeus Mora. His plot to overthrow the dragons was discovered by another dragon priest, known as the Guardian. The Guardian confronted the Traitor, and the two fought a terrible battle. So great was their power, Solstheim was sundered from Skyrim. The Guardian proved to be the more powerful, and bested the Traitor. Just as the Guardian was about to land the final blow, Herma-Mora snatched the Traitor away, rescuing him from certain death. As a reward for his loyalty, the Guardian was given Solstheim to rule, where his reign is remembered as peaceful and prosperous, and he is remembered as a wise and just ruler.[2]


In another tale, originating from when the Skaal were a new people, the land was at peace. The sun was warm, and the groups bountiful, and all the Skaal gave thanks to the All-Maker. Over time, however, the Skaal gave less and less thanks, becoming complacent and lazy. They forgot that the Adversary, the antithesis of the All-Maker, is always watching, waiting for a chance to torment the All-Maker and his preferred people. Unlike the All-Maker, the Adversary has many aspects, each one with a specific name and gender. At this time, he was known as the Greedy Man. The Greedy Man lived among the Skaal for some time, until one day the powers of the Skaal suddenly disappeared. The warriors became weak, the shaman could no longer call to the beasts of the forest for aid. The elders of the Skaal thought that the All-Maker had abandoned them, and this is when the Greedy Man spoke. He told them that because of their disregard for the gifts of the All-Maker, he had taken them away. He told them that until one among them could retrieve the gifts of the All-Maker, all of the Skaal would live in misery, and then he disappeared. The Skaal spoke well into the night, and then into the next day, and continued to talk until many days passed. They knew that someone must go, but none of them wanted to bear the responsibility. It was then that a young man named Aevar spoke, and volunteered to go. He traveled into the forest, to each of the All-Maker Stones, meditating at each of them, and learned from the All-Maker how he might retrieve the gifts from the Greedy Man. He traveled across Solstheim, and retrieved all of the gifts from the Greedy Man. He meditated again, and the All-Maker spoke to him, telling them that he was pleased, and that the Greedy Man would not bother the Skaal again for many years to come. With that, Aevar returned to the Skaal, and lived according to the true ways of the Skaal.[7]

The Skaal believe a mummified wolf paw capped at the ankle with silver can ward away werewolves.[23]


Visuals carved onto horker scrimshaws depict the early ancestors of the Skaal people running their boats aground on the land of Solstheim.[24]

Following the Red Year, the ashfall from Red Mountain gradually worsened, poisoning the land and water. This causes animals to have less to eat and become desperate, driven north in search of food, into Skaal lands.[25]

All-Maker stonesEdit

An All-Maker Stone

The All-Maker stones are an essential part to skaal religion. They represent the most important parts of nature and the greatest gifts of the all maker.

There are six of these standing stones on Solstheim:

  • The wind stone
  • The beast stone
  • The sun stone
  • The water stone
  • The earth stone
  • The tree stone

Beings in Skaal spiritualityEdit

Leaders of the SkaalEdit


See AlsoEdit

  • For game-specific information, see the Bloodmoon article about the Skaal people, and the Bloodmoon and Dragonborn articles about the village.


  1. ^ a b Frea's dialogue in Dragonborn.
  2. ^ a b The Guardian and the TraitorLucius Gallus
  3. ^ Tharstan's dialogue in Dragonborn.
  4. ^ a b Children of the All-MakerTharstan of Solitude
  5. ^ The Skaal Test of Wisdom quest in Bloodmoon
  6. ^ Lord of SoulsGreg Keyes
  7. ^ a b The Story of Aevar Stone-Singer
  8. ^ a b Korst Wind-Eye's dialogue in Bloodmoon
  9. ^ Wulf Wild-Blood's dialogue in Skyrim
  10. ^ Graring's dialogue in Bloodmoon
  11. ^ Hidar's dialogue in Bloodmoon
  12. ^ Aenar's dialogue in Bloodmoon
  13. ^ Brazier of Frozen Flame Codex entries
  14. ^ Deor Woodcutter's dialogue in Dragonborn.
  15. ^ Dragonborn loading screen
  16. ^ Skaal Amulet in Dragonborn
  17. ^ Events of Bloodmoon
  18. ^ Crafting Motif 46: Frostcaster StyleDoctor Alfidia Lupus, Imperial Ethnographer
  19. ^ Snow Leopard Sabre Cat description
  20. ^ Thirsk, a HistoryBereditte Jastal
  21. ^ Dialogue of Thirsk residents around 3E 427 claiming Thirsk is over 500 years old.
  22. ^ Kuvar's dialogue in Dragonborn
  23. ^ Gnarled Paw item description
  24. ^ Skaal-Carved Horker Tusk description
  25. ^ Wulf Wild-Blood's dialogue in Dragonborn
  26. ^ Skaal dialogue in Bloodmoon

Note: The following references are considered to be unofficial sources. They are included to round off this article and may not be authoritative or conclusive.