Miraak (Dragon Language: Mir-Aak, "Allegiance-Guide") is the primary antagonist of The Elder Scrolls V: Dragonborn, the first of all known Dragonborns (according to himself, the locals of Solstheim, and Hermaeus Mora) and a dragon priest.
During the period of time when dragons ruled over mortals, Miraak served as a dragon priest on the island of Solstheim. He came into possession of a Black Book which in turn led him to servitude under Hermaeus Mora, the Daedric Prince of Knowledge and Fate, who taught him a means to great power: a dragon shout capable of bending dragons to his will.
With this forbidden knowledge in his possession, Miraak turned on his dragon masters, using it, and his power as Dragonborn, to devour their souls to become ever more powerful. During the Dragon War, the ancient Nord heroes Hakon One-Eye, Gormlaith Golden-Hilt, and Felldir the Old had pleaded for Miraak to use his power as Dragonborn to assist them in defeating Alduin. However, Miraak refused to do so and instead attempted his own rebellion against the dragons. Because of his betrayal, the dragons razed his temple on Solstheim.
His rebellion was unsuccessful and he was defeated by another Dragon Priest named Vahlok who was then made his jailor, restraining him to Solstheim. Other accounts mention that just as Vahlok was about to kill Miraak, Hermaeus Mora saved him by transporting him to the realm of Apocrypha. The dragons then appointed Vahlok as ruler of the island, but not before he was compelled to swear an oath of vigilance to watch for Miraak's return, earning him the title "The Jailor."
Meanwhile, Miraak stayed in the realm of Apocrypha until he could amass enough power and influence to return to Solstheim, which he was able to do in 4E 201.
Miraak can be seen as a very arrogant and rash individual, believing that his Dragonborn heritage sets him above his former dragon masters. Upon meeting the Last Dragonborn, he can claim that, (unless the main questline has been completed, in which case Miraak will grudgingly state admiration for the Dragonborn) compared to him, they have only killed a "few dragons" and do not yet know the true power of a Dragonborn, such as himself. He also believes himself above the servitude of Hermaeus Mora. Miraak is also a being that desires power, willing in the past to bind himself in servitude to Hermaeus Mora in order to gain forbidden knowledge and power.
Despite, or perhaps due to, his arrogance, Miraak is shown to be a very powerful individual, as he was not only able to defy the Dragons he served, but he was also able to devour many of them before his defeat as a total of twenty-one different Dragon skeletons can be found both around and within his temple.
Miraak proves to be fiercely independent and seems to be motivated solely by his lust for power. This can be seen not only through his initial betrayal of the Dragons at the height of their power, but also through his resistance to the effects of Apocrypha as it is said that all those who venture there become prisoners of their own thirst for knowledge and are unable to leave, whereas Miraak appeared unaffected.
During his final battle with the Dragonborn, he claims that Hakon and the other ancient Nord heroes wished to use him to slay Alduin, but he chose not to for his own reasons. However, should Alduin have already been defeated upon meeting him, he will claim that he could have killed the World-Eater himself, a further sign of his arrogant nature.
Shortly after the quest "The Way of the Voice," two Cultists will call out and ask the Dragonborn if they are truly Dragonborn. After the conversation they will attack. After they are killed, a note with orders to kill the "False" Dragonborn in order to please Miraak will be found on one of their bodies. The quest will then be directed to the island of Solstheim.
Once on the island, asking around Raven Rock will cause someone to suggest the Temple of Miraak be investigated. There it will be learned that Miraak has begun taking over the people of Solstheim using the All-Maker Stones.
Miraak himself is met for the first time at the end of this quest. Upon finding the Black Book: Waking Dreams in the depths of the temple, the Dragonborn will be transported to Apocrypha, the realm of Hermaeus Mora. Immediately, Miraak will strike the Dragonborn to their knees and claim that they do not know the true power of a Dragonborn. He then says that they can await his return like the rest of Tamriel before ordering his seekers to transport the Dragonborn back to Nirn and riding off on a dragon.
After this, should the Dragonborn kill a dragon when he already possessed a dragon soul, either on Solstheim or in Skyrim, Miraak will briefly appear, taunt the Dragonborn, absorb the dragon's soul himself, and then disappear.
Miraak appears one last time at the end of this quest to kill the Dragonborn and devour their soul so that he may return to Solstheim. Miraak begins with a short monologue as his dragon minions, Relonikiv and Kruziikrel, sit perched upon the nearby arches.
During the battle, the dragons circle the summit. Each time Miraak is near death, he will call down one of the dragons, devouring its soul to replenish his health. Once all three dragons have been devoured, he can finally be defeated.
Upon his defeat, Hermaeus Mora appears, impaling him with a tentacle, and expresses his disappointment. Then Miraak disintegrates, leaving just a skeleton. Hermaeus Mora then transfers his status to the Last Dragonborn. The Dragonborn then absorbs Miraak's soul, which yields between five and ten dragon souls, plus any that Miraak may have stolen. Due to the soul absorption, he will only remain as a dead skeleton and thus the Dragonborn is never able to see Miraak's face without unequipping the mask via console commands.
This mantra is repeated by people found working on Miraak's shrines surrounding the All-Maker Stones. They will each say one line when spoken to. In addition, if an All-Maker stone is activated, Miraak's disembodied voice will repeat a slightly altered variant of the mantra.
What by day was stolen
And when the world shall listen
And when the world shall see
And when the world remembers
That world shall cease to be."
Miraak has proven to be an exceptionally powerful individual. Naturally, as a Dragonborn, he is able to utilize several dragon shouts in battle. The shouts that he is shown to have knowledge of are as follows:
- Fire Breath
- Frost Breath
- Bend Will
- Dragon Aspect
- Become Ethereal
- Whirlwind Sprint
- Unrelenting Force
Miraak's shouts seem to lack time limits. However, their usage rate is not as frequent as that of Greybeards.
Like most Dragon Priests throughout Skyrim and Solstheim, Miraak is a very capable mage, able to cast powerful lightning bolts, generate wards, and use healing spells. He will also make use of his own personal staff that allows him to summon fields of writhing tentacles that can cause severe poison damage. He also possesses his own personal sword, which allows him to drain his victim's stamina in the form of a giant tendril.
During his battle with the Last Dragonborn, whenever his health reaches a critical level, Miraak will use the Shouts Become Ethereal and Whirlwind Sprint to become immune to damage and flee back to the center of the arena. There, he will call down one of the dragons under his control and use a unique four-word shout to instantly kill it, absorbing their soul and restoring his health. The shout, "..., ziil los dii du!" roughly translates into "..., your soul is mine to devour!" He will also sometimes begin the battle by using the Dragon Aspect shout, greatly enhancing his abilities, and will frequently use Fire Breath, Frost Breath, and Cyclone to attack the Dragonborn in addition to his weapons and magical abilities.
Miraak also has a few unique abilities that the Dragonborn does not have access to. He is able to use Bend Will to control several dragons at once and is able to command them from afar. Whenever the Last Dragonborn slays a dragon after meeting Miraak, there is a chance he will appear and absorb the dragon's soul for his own. This usually happens when the Last Dragonborn possesses one or more dragon souls, indicating his power to absorb dragon souls is slightly stronger. This also shows that Miraak, even when not at full power, possessed the ability to temporarily travel between Tamriel and Apocrypha, though in a somewhat incorporeal state. In this state he is also immune to all sources of damage.
Miraak has the following:
|Immunities and Perks (Click to show)|
The following are items equipped by Miraak. They can be looted from his skeletal corpse following the battle.
|Show: The Temple of Miraak|
"The time comes soon when... What? Who are you to dare set foot here? Ahh... You are Dragonborn. I can feel it. And yet... You have done little beyond killing a few dragons. You have no idea of the true power a Dragonborn can wield! Mul... Qah Diiv! This realm is beyond you. You have no power here. And it is only a matter of time before Solstheim is also mine. I already control the minds of its people. Soon they will finish building my temple, and I can return home. Send him back where he came from. He can await my arrival with the rest of Tamriel."
If Alduin has been slain:
"The time comes soon when... What? Who are you to dare set foot here? Ahh... You are Dragonborn. I can feel it. And yet... So you have slain Alduin... Well done. I could have slain him myself, back when I walked the earth, but I chose a different path. You have no idea of the true power a Dragonborn can wield! Mul... Qah Diiv! This realm is beyond you. You have no power here. And it is only a matter of time before Solstheim is also mine. I already control the minds of its people. Soon they will finish building my temple, and I can return home. Send him back where he came from. He can await my arrival with the rest of Tamriel."
|Show: At the Summit of Apocrypha|
"Sahrotaar, are you so easily swayed? No. Not yet. We should greet our guest first. And so the First Dragonborn meets the Last Dragonborn at the summit of Apocrypha. No doubt just as Hermaeus Mora intended. He is a fickle master, you know. But now I will be free of him. My time in Apocrypha is over. You are here in your full power, and thus subject to my full power. You will die. And with the power of your soul, I will return to Solstheim and be master of my own fate once again. Kruziikrel! Relonikiv! Now!"
During the fight:
"Hermaeus Mora is laughing at us, you know."
While sacrificing his dragons:
"Kruziikrel, ziil los dii du!"
At the end of the fight, Hermaeus Mora will intervene:
Miraak: "Wuld... Nah Kest!"
|"Send him back where he came from."|
|"You have no idea of the true power a Dragonborn can wield!"|
|"And so the First Dragonborn meets the Last Dragonborn at the summit of Apocrypha."|
|"May he be rewarded for his service as I am!"|
|"Not this time, Dragonborn. This one's mine."|
|"Do you ever wonder if it hurts? To have one's soul ripped out like that?"|
|"This dragon's soul belongs to me."|
|"It takes a strong will to command a dragon's soul. Perhaps you aren't as powerful as you think."|
|"One step closer to my return."|
|"I grow ever stronger, Dragonborn."|
|"Thank you for your help. We will meet again soon."|
|"Kruziikrel! Relonikiv! Now!"|
|"Sahrotaar, ziil los dii du!"|
|"Relonikiv, ziil los dii du!"|
|"Hermaeus Mora is laughing at us, you know."|
|"Fate decreed that you had to die so that I could win my freedom."|
|"Felling Alduin was a mighty deed, and I thank you for it. He would have proved troublesome to me."|
|"They wanted to use me to deal with Alduin - Hakon and the rest. I chose otherwise."|
|"You fight valiantly against fate, but I am stronger here."|
|"I know things that the Greybeards will never teach you."|
|"This cannot be. I am master of my own fate!"|
|"Beware. Hermaeus Mora will betray you as he has me."|
|"I am done being Hermaeus Mora's pawn."|
|"This is the only way, Dragonborn. The only way I can be free."|
|"You could have been mighty, if fate had decreed otherwise."|
|"So, you use my own Shout against me. You learn quickly."|
|"You are strong. Stronger than I believed possible."|
|"The Greybeards taught you well."|
|"I always knew you were weak-minded, Sahrotaar."|
|"So easily you betray me, after all these years."|
|"There's no escape from this place."|
|"You are in my power here."|
|"Hiding is beneath you, Dragonborn."|
|"It's too late for regrets, Dragonborn."|
|"Ah, now we can finish this."|
|"You cannot flee me, Dragonborn."|
|"I can call you back to my tower as often as I like."|
|"Your death will not be that painless."|
- Miraak was voiced by Peter Jessop.
- To address the confusion that arose from the existence of a Dragonborn predating Alessia, Michael Kirkbride, a former writer at Bethesda, stated, "Alessia didn't have the power to absorb dragon souls. Hers was a much more nuanced power: to dream of liberty and give it a name and on her deathbed make Covenant with the Aka-Tusk.[UL 1]
- If Miraak's mask is removed via console commands, he appears as a Nord whose face and hair are randomly generated.
- Much of Miraak's dialogue seems to have been cut. Game data reveals the Dragonborn and Miraak converse longer before the battle at the Summit of Apocrypha takes place. Some of these lines include "I grieve that you must meet your end this way but necessity demands it.", "You... you are the true Dragonborn...", and "Well fought, Dragonborn, but I'm afraid this is not over. I shall return and take what is mine." This suggests that another battle was to take place or Hermaeus Mora does not kill Miraak and he escapes.
- Most of Miraak's clothing and weapons seem to be influenced by Hermaeus Mora. His robes and weapons make references to Hermaeus Mora due to their tendril effects. His mask also seems to resemble a mass of tendrils. His mask also resembles a Seeker's face.
- In the official pre-release trailer and artwork, Miraak's robes are purple, but in-game they appear brownish green.
- Miraak has multiple Base IDs for separating character AI and behaviors. This feature is also shared by other characters such as Harkon.
- Miraak is the only Dragon Priest to be listed as a character rather than a creature. He is also the only one to be alive, as opposed to all the other Dragon Priests in the game being undead.
- When "The Temple of Miraak" is completed, and if "At the Summit of Apocrypha" is not complete, Miraak may steal the Dragon souls that the Last Dragonborn kills in Skyrim and Solstheim.
- Besides Ahzidal, he is the only dragon priest who has a set of armor.
- Attempting to search Miraak's skeleton while absorbing the Dragon Souls he stole results in a warning in the upper left corner of the screen: "This person is busy." Only after his skeleton stops glowing can he be searched.
- As he lived during the Merethic Era, Miraak is oldest human alive.
|Click to show|
|Skyrim||Hevnoraak • Krosis • Morokei • Nahkriin • Otar the Mad • Rahgot • Vokun • Volsung|
|Dragonborn||Ahzidal • Dukaan • Miraak • Vahlok the Jailor • Zahkriisos|
|Online||Akiirdal • ArthosiisOR • Haldriin • Korthor • Vosis|