Elder Scrolls
Elder Scrolls

The Ancient Shrouded Cowl is a unique Shrouded Cowl and part of the Ancient Shrouded Armor set found in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.


The cowl, along with the rest of the armor set, can be obtained at the conclusion of the Dark Brotherhood side quest "Locate the Assassin of Old."

The quest is given by Olava the Feeble and can only be accepted if the bonus requirement of Breaching Security has been met.

The cowl itself can be found on the corpse of an assassin inside a secret room in Hag's End. While Hag's End can be accessed before accepting the quest, the pull chain to open the secret door will not appear until Olava has been visited.


Wearing this piece of armor grants the following skill bonuses:

In addition, wearing the full Ancient Shrouded Armor set grants a 25-point armor bonus. It cannot be disenchanted.


The Ancient Shrouded Cowl can be upgraded at a workbench with piece of leather and the Arcane Blacksmith perk, however it does not benefit from any Smithing perks.

This means the armor cannot be improved past flawless quality without boosting the Smithing skill over 100. This can be achieved by using enchanted items and/or blacksmithing potions to fortify Smithing.


This section contains bugs related to Ancient Shrouded Cowl. Before adding a bug to this list, consider the following:

  1. Please reload an old save to confirm if the bug is still happening.
  2. If the bug is still occurring, please post the bug report with the appropriate system template  360  /  XB1  ,  PS3  /  PS4  ,  PC  /  MAC  ,  NX  /  PS5  ,  XS  , depending on which platform(s) the bug has been encountered on.
  3. Be descriptive when listing the bug and fixes, but avoid having conversations in the description and/or using first-person anecdotes: such discussions belong on the appropriate forum board.
Click to see bugs encountered
  •  360   There is an error in loading its texture, and the game will allow the Dragonborn to equip some certain second head armor such as Dragon Priest Masks, combining both armors' enchantments and armor ratings. This is verified to work with the Falmer Helmet and circlet combo for a total of three head pieces.
    •  360   The cowl can be worn under all types of head gear - from generic to unique, clothing to heavy armor helmets - when equipped first. Head gear listed above the cowl will equip normally. Head gear listed below the cowl will de-equip the cowl when interchanging between the 2nd head gears. Either re-equip the cowl and then equip the desired head gear or manually de-equip the old head gear before equipping the desired head gear.
    •  360   Cowl will count against the Well Fitted Heavy Armor perk, removing the 25% armor rating boost even after equipping a Heavy helmet on top. Cowl's armor rating is still applied.
    •  360   A random but stable bug allows you to equip a circlet instead of the cowl under your head gear. Select the cowl first and then select a circlet of choice. Then select the desired head gear to wear over it. This will de-equip the cowl but leave the circlet on with the head gear and all enchanted effects intact.
      • This will NOT count against the Heavy Armor perk, allowing you to gain all the benefits of the skill tree.
      • Circlets will show through hoods and maybe light armor head gear. (Tested and confirmed for Khajiit wearing Nightingale Hood)
  •  PC   360   PS3   NX  When worn by Khajiit, Dunmer and Argonians, cowl is not visible and removes hair style. This has also been confirmed for Imperials. Apparently, this will also remove the cowl's armor rating from your character.
    •  360   To at least gain the cowl's effect if this applies to one, he or she must wear a Dragon Priest Mask or perform a Falmer Helmet/circlet combo.
    •  PC   PS3   NX   It does give the armor rating, plus the enchantment, and it also stacks with any other helmet's armor rating or enchantments. (Regular hats work as well. Confirmed on Khajiit and Argonian characters.)
    •  PC   360   NX   Khajiit and Argonian characters may still gain the armor rating and enchantment effects from the Ancient Shrouded Cowl, and another helmet, but the cowl will remain invisible. 
    • When worn worn by a female vampiric Dunmer, the tips of her ears will protrude through the hood. (It is unknown if it affects all elven races, both genders, or just elves that are infected with vampirism.)
    •  PC   If your character has the perk for bonus armor when wearing all light armor, and the character is wearing all light armor, the bonus also affects the extra headgear that is equipped no matter its type. (Confirmed Khajiit male only.)