Skyrim:Paarthurnax (dragon)

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This article is about the creature. For the quest, see Paarthurnax (quest).

Paarthurnax (RefID: 0003C57D)
Location Throat of the World
Species Dragon Soul Dragon
Level 10 Type Monsters
RefID 0003C57D BaseID 0003C57C
Dragon Loot
Other Information
Health 905 Magicka 150
Stamina 130
Primary Skills Archery, Block, One-handed, Sneak
Perks Dragonskin
Essential Yes, until Paarthurnax quest
Faction(s) FavorExcludedFaction; Greybeards; PaarthurnaxFaction; Special Dialogue Friendly Bleedout

Paarthurnax is a meditative dragon residing on the Throat of the World, skywards of High Hrothgar. From here, he serves as the leader of the Greybeards, who are fiercely protective of him.

During the Dragon War, Paarthurnax served as lieutenant to Alduin, and they were supposedly close allies. Paarthurnax himself counts Alduin as a brother. During his time as lieutenant, he is said to have committed several atrocities against mankind, despite also being the one who turned the tide in the favor of men.

It was Paarthurnax who taught the first Tongues, Gormlaith Golden-Hilt, Hakon One-Eye, and Felldir the Old, to turn the tide in the Dragon War. Despite Paarthurnax claiming he did this after Alduin's false proclamation of Godhood, Nordic legends say Paarthurnax was sent by Kyne to teach man the thu'um. After leaving, and secluding himself atop the Throat of the World, he was able to overcome his draconic instincts by practicing a philosophy invented by Jurgen Windcaller known as the Way of the Voice.

After the construction of High Hrothgar, Paarthurnax became the grandmaster of the Greybeards, but remained in seclusion at the peak of the Throat of the World. Paarthurnax also recalls visiting the captured dragon, Numinex, in Dragonsreach around the first era.

Even long after the Dragon War, few but the Greybeards trust him, partly because of his race, but mostly because of his past. Especially distrustful of the dragon are the Blades, Delphine and Esbern, who wish him dead. Despite this, Paarthurnax, who thinks of himself as being only what "father Akatosh" made him to be, willingly shares his knowledge with Dovahkiin, and remains hospitable even in the face of death.

His name can be separated into three words in the dragon language: Paar Thur Nax, meaning "Ambition Overlord Cruelty".

Surprisingly, he only knows the Fire Breath shout.

He may greet you with "Drem Yol Lok. Greetings." or "Speak. I will listen." Exiting dialogue will have him say either "Su'um ahrk morah." or "Lok, Thu'um."

Related Quests[edit]

Alduin's Bane[edit]

When you arrive at the Throat of the World, Paarthurnax will be quite impressed with your efforts: "You have it. The Kel - the Elder Scroll. Tiid kreh... qalos. Time shudders at its touch. There is no question. You are doom-driven. Kogaan Akatosh. The very bones of the earth are at your disposal. Go then. Fulfill your destiny. Take the Scroll to the Time-Wound. Do not delay. Alduin will be coming. He cannot miss the signs."

After the cutscene from the Merethic Era, once Alduin appears and taunts you, Paarthurnax will say: "Lost funt. You are too late, Alduin! Dovahkiin! Use Dragonrend, if you know it!"

At the beginning of the fight with Alduin, Paarthurnax will say: "Unslaad hokoron! Never again!". He will then repeatedly urge you to use Dragonrend; saying: "Dovahkiin, vosaraan! Use Dragonrend before Alduin consumes you!", "Use Dragonrend, Dovahkiin!", "He is too strong on the wing! Bring him to gol with Dragonrend!", "Use Dragonrend! It is the only chance to defeat him!". Once you have brought Alduin down with Dragonrend; Paarthunaax will continue to encourage you; saying: "Now, Dovahkiin! Now he is vulnerable!", "This is your chance, Dovahkiin! Strike with all your force!", "Hurt him while he is grounded!".


During the main quest, Delphine and Esbern will demand you to kill Paarthurnax for the atrocities he committed during the Dragon War.

Upon approaching Paarthurnax for this, you can tell him that the Blades say he deserves to die. He will reply, "The Blades are wise not to trust me. Onikaan ni ov. I would not trust another dovah." You can ask why they shouldn't trust him, and Paarthurnax will explain, "Dov wahlaan fah rel. We were made to dominate. The will to power is in our blood. You feel it in yourself, do you not? I can be trusted. I know this. But they do not. Onikaan ni ov dovah. It is always wise to mistrust a dovah. I have overcome my nature only through meditation and long study of the Way of the Voice. No day goes by where I am not tempted to return to my inborn nature. Zin krif horvut se suleyk. What is better - to be born good, or to overcome your evil nature through great effort?"


Paarthurnax perches on a word wall.

If you talk to Paarthurnax about meditating on the Words, he will tell you, "Knowing a Word of Power is to take its meaning into yourself. Contemplate the meaning of a Rotmulaag. You will become closer to that Word, as it fills your inner self. Will I teach you, Dovahkiin? What Word calls you to deeper understanding? There are three to master: Fus, Feim, and Yol." The effect applies until you choose another, and does not conflict with the Standing Stones. If you kill Paarthurnax, the bonus will not disappear, but you won't be able to change it.

Fus - Force
Force Without Effort You stagger 25% less and foes stagger 25% more. Augments power attacks and Unrelenting Force shout
"It is called 'Force' in your tongue. But as you push the world, so does the world push back. Think of the way force may be applied effortlessly. Imagine but a whisper pushing aside all in its path. That is 'Fus.' Let its meaning fill you. Su'um ahrk morah. You will push the world harder than it pushes back."
Feim - Fade
Eternal Spirit While Ethereal, you recover health 25% faster. Only active and visible on Active Effects menu when using Become Ethereal shout
"'Fade' in your tongue. Mortals have greater affinity for this Word than the dov. Everything mortal fades away in time, but the spirit remains. Ponder the meaning of spirit. Unslaad zii. Where mortal flesh may wither and die, the spirit endures. That is 'Feim.' Let that meaning fill you. Su'um ahrk morah. You will find that your spirit will give you more strength."
Yol - Fire
The Fire Within Fire Breath shout deals 25% more damage.
"In your tongue, the Word simply means 'Fire.' It is change given form. Power at its most primal. That is the true meaning of 'Yol.' Suleyk. Power. You have it, as do all dov. But power is inert without action and choice. Think of this as the fire builds in your su'um, in your breath. Su'um ahrk morah. What will you burn? What will you spare?"

At other times, telling Paarthurnax that you wish to meditate on a Word of Power will have him ask, "Which calls to you, Dovahkiin? Fus, Feim, or Yol?" Otherwise his dialogue is the same as the table above.


  • Sissel, a young girl from Rorikstead, will tell you that she had a dream about a "good dragon" who was "old and gray" but "wasn't scary". While it's likely that this was a vision of Paarthurnax, there's no confirmation of this in the game.
  • During the dialogue with him he refers to a time cycle, Kalpa, which is a Sanskrit word sometimes translated as an aeon.
  • Paarthurnax is voiced by Charles Martinet.

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