"One sure mark of a fool is to dismiss anything that falls outside his experience as being impossible."
―Farengar Secret-Fire[src]


Farengar Secret-Fire, commonly referred to throughout the game as Farengar, serves as the court wizard for Jarl Balgruuf the Greater at Dragonsreach in Whiterun where he conducts studies regarding magic and dragons.

Personality and traitsEdit

In general, Farengar is friendly enough to the Dragonborn; cooperative without quirks, though sometimes more than a little condescending. He is scripted for the archetypal absent-minded professor, being far more focused on abstract thought and scientific curiosity than to prefer practical interpersonal communication or stagnant common sense. He treats Skyrim's Civil War with overall distaste, seeing it as an obstacle to progress, but his personal loyalty and respect for Jarl Balgruuf transcends such things.

Dragon ResearchEdit

Prior to the Dragonborn's arrival at Dragonsreach, Farengar regarded dragons as hypothetical, mythical phenomena. He is fascinated upon learning their existence and expresses wishes to see one in person; however, his wish is denied by Jarl Balgruuf on the grounds that it is too dangerous and that Farengar is needed alive in Dragonsreach in order to continue researching ways to counter a dragon attack. 

Later, during Odahviing's capture, Farengar attempts to perform some tests for his research, but is sent running by a blast of fire from the angered dragon.


Farengar's study is attached to the main hall of Dragonsreach. He sells spell tomes and has an alchemy lab and arcane enchanter. Additionally, Farengar sells enchanting supplies and is himself an enchanter.


Bleak Falls BarrowEdit

Arriving in Whiterun to inform the Jarl of the dragon attack at Helgen, the Dragonborn is asked by Farengar to retrieve the Dragonstone from Bleak Falls Barrow. It is possible that the Dragonborn already got the stone while helping Lucan Valerius recover The Golden Claw that was stolen from him.

The World-Eater's EyrieEdit

When the Dragonborn traps Odahviing in Dragonsreach, Farengar asks if he can run some tests on him and does so even when Odahviing says, "Begone mage, do not test my promise to the Dovahkiin." Eventually, despite Irileth warning him that what he is doing is a bad idea, Odahviing lets out a stream of fire that sends Farengar running from the room as Balgruuf reprimands him.

College and errandsEdit

Asking Farengar about his wares can spark the "Visit College of Winterhold" quest. Farengar also asks the Dragonborn to deliver frost salts to Arcadia at Arcadia's Cauldron in Whiterun. When successfully delivered, Arcadia mentions the ingredients will be used to craft a Love Potion which she says she will test on Farengar, possibly joking.

The Whispering DoorEdit

The Dragonborn has the option of killing Farengar or picking his pocket to obtain a key to the room containing the Ebony Blade. It is possible to pickpocket the key from him even with a low pickpocket skill.


Stealing from him at any point may result in a contract to have hired thugs kill the Dragonborn.


If Farengar dies, either by circumstance or being murdered by the Dragonborn, he bequeaths a sum of 100 GoldIcon to the Dragonborn, 10 of which is removed by the Jarl as tax.



"Come to Dragonsreach to discuss the ongoing hostilities, like the rest of the "great warriors"?"

Where can I learn more about magic? "A prospective student, are you? Well, I'm afraid I'm not much good at teaching. You should try your luck at the college of Winterhold."
Have you encountered any dragons? "Sadly, no. My work affords me few opportunities for such an adventure. Perhaps some here will bring one to Dragonsreach, like Olaf One-Eye once did. What a fascinating conversation that would be!"
Do you owe allegiance to the Imperials? "If I said that was a tedious question, would you be smart enough to know what I meant? Probably not. As long as I'm left alone to pursue my research, I don't care who gives the orders. Now, I'm a busy man and your questions are boring me terribly. Good day."
What are the duties of a court wizard? "I'll put it simply, so you'll understand. I advise the Jarl in matters of magic. If the hold is faced with any threats or mysteries of a magical nature, I am called upon to explain things and suggest a course of action. Hopefully that answer will satisfy you. Good day."

"You know, if you've got the aptitude, you should join the Mages College in Winterhold..."

College and errands
Are you the only wizard in Whiterun? "I believe I am, yes. Technically speaking, of course. The city is also home to a priest, priestess, an alchemist, and I'm sure others who practice. Ah, that reminds me. Speaking of alchemists, I have some frost salts for Arcadia. She asked me to obtain them for one of her potions. Would you be so kind as to deliver the frost salts for me? I'm sure Arcadia will provide some form of recompense..."
I'll deliver the frost salts for you. "Good. You're clearly better suited than I am to carry out such a menial task."
Do I look like a courier to you? "Well, let's see... travel-stained clothes, worn soles, blank and unintelligent expression... Yes, in fact you do."
Bleak Falls Barrow

"Come to Dragonsreach to discuss the ongoing hostilities, like the rest of the "great warriors"?"

The Jarl said you had a project you needed help with. "Hmm? What? Project? You think you could help me? I really don't think so."
Never mind. I'll wait for Jarl Balgruuf. "The Jarl can be found in the Great Hall, probably sitting on the Jarl's throne. Not over here in a wizard's laboratory."
Look out - you're about to step in your own Shock Rune. "What? I never even cast... ah, I see. You have some knowledge of the Higher Art. Please forgive my earlier rudeness. I am so often interrupted by visitors wondering in, I can occasionally become quite savage. Now... what did you say you wanted?"
The Jarl said you had a project you needed help with. "Ah, indeed? The Jarl... Oh yes, he must be referring to my research into the dragons."

If one has waited for Jarl Balgruuf, the dialogue will start with the following line, which is otherwise added to the previous one.

"So the Jarl thinks you can be of use to me? Oh yes, he must be referring to my research into the dragons. Yes, I could use someone to fetch something for me. Well, when I say fetch, I really mean delve into a dangerous ruin in search of an ancient stone tablet that may or may not actually be there."

All right. Where am I going and what am I fetching? "Straight to the point, eh? No need for tedious hows and whys. I like that. Leave those details to your betters, am I right?"
What does this have to do with dragons? "Ah, no mere brute mercenary, but a thinker - perhaps even a scholar? You see, when the stories of dragons began to circulate, many dismissed them as mere fantasies, rumors. Impossibilities. One sure mark of a fool is to dismiss anything that falls outside his experience as being impossible. But I began to search for information about dragons - where had they gone all those years ago? And where were they coming from?"
Just tell me what you need me to do. "You are eager to begin your adventure. Excellent. The sooner begun, the sooner done, eh?"
So what do you need me to do? "I began to search for information about dragons - where had they gone all those years ago? And where were they coming from? I ah, learned of a certain stone tablet said to be housed in Bleak Falls Barrow - a "Dragonstone," said to contain a map of dragon burial sites. Go to Bleak Falls Barrow, find this tabler - no doubt interred in the main chamber - and bring it to me. Simplicity itself."
Oh, do you mean this old stone? (Give Dragonstone to Farengar) (Only available if the Dragonstone has already been found) "Ah! The Dragonstone of Bleak Falls Barrow! You already found it! (Not included if the Dragonstone is found later) You are cut from a different cloth than the usual brutes the Jarl foists on me."
So what about my reward? "You'll have to see the Jarl about that. Maybe his steward, Avenicci. I'm sure one of them will pay you appropriately."
I got your the Dragonstone. What next? "That is where your job ends and mine begins. The work of the mind, sadly undervalued in Skyrim."
The Way of the Voice

"It seems this damnable conflict has claimed everyone's passions of late. Me? I prefer my books, and my spells."

What's it mean to be Dragonborn? "I don't know much. Only the old tales about the ancient heroes who would use the Voice to defeat the enemies of Skyrim. They say the Emperors used to be Dragonborn, but that all ended when Martin died during the Oblivion Crisis. The Greybeards can tell you much more than I can. They're the masters of the Way of the Voice and taught Tiber Septim himself."
What do you know about Shouts? "Well, I only know what I've heard in the old tales. Shouting is an ancient form of magic - the use of one's voice to project their power. If you can Shout, you need to go see the Greybeards. They'll know what to do."


The Dragonstone

Farengar: "You see? The terminology is clearly First Era or even earlier. I'm convinced this is a copy of a much older text. Perhaps dating to just after the Dragon War. If so, I could use this to cross-reference the names with other later texts."
Delphine: "Good. I'm glad you're making progress. My employers are anxious to have some tangible answers."
Farengar: "Oh, have no fear. The Jarl himself has finally taken an interest, so I'm now able to devote most of my time to this research."
Delphine: "Time is running, Farengar, don't forget. This isn't some theoretical question. Dragons have come back."
Farengar: "Yes, yes. Don't worry. Although the chance to see a living dragon up close would be tremendously valuable... Now, let me show you something else I found... very intriguing... I think your employers may be interested as well..."
Delphine "You have a visitor."
Farengar: "Hmm? Ah, yes, the Jarl's protege! Back from Bleak Falls Barrow? You didn't die, it seems. Ah! The Dragonstone of Bleak Falls Barrow! Seems you are a cut above the usual brutes the Jarl sends my way. My... associate here will be pleased to see your handiwork. She discovered its location, by means she has so far declined to share with me."
Farengar: "So your information was correct after all. And we have our friend here to thank for recovering it for us."
Delphine: "You (Referring to the Dragonborn) went into Bleak Falls Barrow and got that? Nice work. Just send me a copy when you've deciphered it."

Dragon Rising

Irileth: "Farengar! Farengar, you need to come at once. A dragon's been sighted nearby. You (Referring to the Dragonborn) should come, too."
Farengar: "A dragon! How exciting! Where was it seen? What was it doing?"
Irileth: "I'd take this a bit more seriously if I were you. If a dragon decides to attack Whiterun, I don't know if we can stop it. Let's go."
Balgruuf: "So, Irileth tells me you came from the western watchtower?"
Whiterun Guard: "Yes, my lord."
Irileth: "Tell him what you told me. About the dragon."
Whiterun Guard: "Uh... that's right. We saw it coming from the south. It was fast... faster than anything I've ever seen."
Balgruuf: "Wat did it do? Is it attacking the watchtower?"
Whiterun Guard: "No, my lord. It was just circling overhead when I left. I never ran so fast in my life... I thought it would come after me for sure."
Balgruuf: "Good work, son. We'll take it from here. Head down to the barracks for some food and rest. You've earned it. Irileth, you'd better gather some guardsmen and get down there."
Irileth: "I've already ordered my men to muster near the main gate."
Balgruuf: "Good. Don't fail me."
(After a brief conversation between the Jarl and the Dragonborn, the conversation continues)
Farengar: "I should come along. I would very much like to see this dragon."
Balgruuf: "No. I can't afford to risk both of you. I need you here working on ways to defend the city against these dragons."
Farengar: "As you command."
Balgruuf: "One last thing, Irileth. This isn't a death or glory mission. I need to know what we're dealing with."
Irileth: "Don't worry, my lord. I'm the very soul of caution."

The World-Eater's Eyrie

Farengar: "Incredible! Uh... sir, you have no idea how long I have waited for such an opportunity! I would be most appreciative if you would permit me to perform some, ah, tests on you. Purely in the interests of the advancement of knowledge."
Odahviing: "Begone, mage. Do not test my promise to the Dovahkiin."
Farengar: "I assure you, you will not even notice me. Most of them are hardly painful at all to a large dragon such as yourself."
Irileth: "Farengar, very bad idea. Even for you."
Farengar: "Surely you won't miss a few scales... or a small amount of blood..."
Odahviing: "Joor mey! What are you doing back there? Yol... Toor...Shul!"
Jarl Balgruuf the Greater: "Farengar! Enough, fool!"


  • "It seems this damnable conflict has claimed everyone's passions of late. Me? I prefer my books, and my spells."
  • "There's a tranquility in magic, don't you think? It is simply energy, to be harnessed by those with the will and knowledge to do so."
  • "Come to Dragonsreach to discuss the ongoing hostilities, like the rest of the "great warriors"?"
  • "You know, if you've got the aptitude, you should join the Mage's College in Winterhold."
  • "Remember, your mind is the best weapon you have."


  • If using the arcane enchanter to enchant an item in front of him, he comments on it.
  • If the Dragonborn hurries to Farengar before the Jarl approaches him, a unique dialogue comes up. He can be told that the Jarl thinks they can be helpful for a project he is working on, but he will assume it is just a waste of his time. If the Dragonborn has significantly high skill (about 28+) in some of what Farengar regards as more sophisticated arts; the Destruction school of magic, Enchanting and Alchemy, they can change his mind by saying something that proves that they have knowledge in these areas, convincing him that they are not just wasting his time.
    • With a high Destruction skill, the Dragonborn will warn Farengar that he is about "to step in your own shock rune." This is an Elder Scrolls version of the old saying "Step on your own landmine," because the Jarl is about to walk in and prove Farengar wrong.
    • If their Enchanting skill is high enough, they will warn him of the danger of leaving soul gems unattended.
    • A high enough Alchemy skill will result in mentioning that he is overheating his essence of spriggan sap.
  • While he is supposedly aware of the Ebony Blade's evil, it can be sold to him.
  • If killed, his remains are in the Whiterun Hall of the Dead in an urn.
  • Farengar shares his voice actor with Vorstag, some of the Stormcloak Soldiers during "Unbound," and a few other characters.


This section contains bugs related to Farengar Secret-Fire. 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  , 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.
  •  PS3   If Farengar is dead or murdered, even while properly hidden, the inhabitants of the castle may become immediately hostile.
  •  360   PS3   If Farengar is dead or murdered when the Dragonborn captures the dragon, Odahviing, in Dragonsreach, the people talk as though Farengar is there and Odahviing is breathing fire at nothing (Farengar typically asks Odahviing if he can run some tests, something Odahviing finds distasteful).
  • He may occasionally despawn, possibly from completing the "Battle for Whiterun" for the Imperial Legion. This may make quests such as "The Whispering Door" or "The Fallen" more difficult or impossible to complete.
  •  360   Occasionally he may sell spells at a variety of levels even if the Dragonborn has not reached the proper level to use them.
  •  PC   360   PS3   His dialogue upon completion of trading will continue to say, "You know, if you've got the aptitude, you should join the mage's college in Winterhold," even if the Dragonborn has completed the quest to become Arch-Mage, and is wearing the Archmage's Robes.


Start a Discussion Discussions about Farengar Secret-Fire

  • Most annoying NPC and why?

    101 messages
    • I'm late here i know but i dispise the children in dragonsreach. "Another wanderer, here to lick my fathers boots" I WILL MUR...
    • How about mikeal. He gots no gurls bards r gae. Ha ha. It seems we’ve forgot one guy. I bet he would have been pretty happy he wasn’t on t...
  • Can I remove this from my inventory?

    5 messages
    • Try talking to Delphine or Balgruuf during that discussion. Normally, Farengar should have walked up to you. You might have to reload save or ...
    • Quest items do not have weight while the associated quests are still active. So, it’s not a glitch, and you need not worry about it taking...
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