Elder Scrolls
Elder Scrolls

"Last week a scholar came to us. He said he knew where we could find another fragment of Wuuthrad. He seemed a fool to me, but if he's right, the honor of the Companions demands that we seek it out."

Proving Honor is a quest available in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim in which the Dragonborn is tasked with recovering a fragment of the battle axe Wuuthrad. Farkas accompanies the Dragonborn as their Shield-Brother to assess their abilities.


The Companions have given me one final challenge before inducing me. I'm to retrieve a fragment of Wuuthrad, the Blade of Ysgramor, from Dustman's Cairn while Farkas judges my valor.


  1. Speak to Skjor
  2. Speak to Farkas
  3. Retrieve the fragment
  4. Return to Jorrvaskr
  5. Follow Vilkas


The quest begins by speaking to Skjor after completing "Trouble in Skyrim." He tells the Dragonborn that one more quest must be completed before becoming a full-fledged member of the Companions. During the trial, Farkas will assess the Dragonborn's progress. The Dragonborn should next talk to Farkas and agree to meet him at Dustman's Cairn. Temporarily, Farkas will replace any existing follower. Any follower will then return to their home location.

Dustman's Cairn[]

The entrance is a bit hard to see. If Farkas was asked to be met there, he stands on the path beside rocks that are difficult to climb. Up the small hill is a ring of stones surrounding a pit. At the south end of the pit is a set of stairs leading down into the pit. The entrance is near the bottom of the stairs. Upon entering the first room, Farkas says it looks like "someone has been digging here... and recently. Tread lightly."

The path leads to a room where leveled draugr reside. After killing them and proceeding through the wooden door, the path leads down to a large cavern with a lever in the middle of an adjoining room. Pulling that lever will close the exit, trapping the Dragonborn inside. This triggers a cutscene. After the scene, Farkas should be spoken to about what happened. During this leg of the quest, Farkas does not aid the Dragonborn in battle. Only in the last room of the cairn does he assist in battle. This may be level dependent – when the Dragonborn is at higher levels, Farkas seems to hang back and watch, but once combat is initiated, Farkas will pursue and attack any fleeing draugr or Silver Hand members and finish them off. He will provide substantial assistance to a lower leveled Dragonborn even before the final room.

Continuing through the caves, members of the Silver Hand attack. After proceeding through two wooden doors, there are Silver Hands inside to be dispatched. The path continues up the stairs, past the burial urns to the next room, and through the wooden door. Two chests may be found in front of the stairs. One can be found by pulling the chain found on the left side of the left hand wall, opening a passage to the chest. The second can be found in the hallway near the front of the stairs amongst the rubble along with a bag of coins behind the left door. Silver Hands and draugr will be encountered along the way until the door to Dustman's Crypt is reached.

Dustman's Crypt[]

Dustman's Crypt

Upon entering the crypt, more Silver Hand members attack. After they are dispatched, a side door leads to a path across the bridge, then down to the right, with Silver Hand and draugr to be fought on the way toward the crypt. The draugr can be easily dispatched using Destruction spells, arrows, or melee weapons with long reach. This causes them to die before being woken, leaving only the Silver Hands to deal with.

After this, a large room with a chest containing Dustman's Cairn Key appears, off to the left upon entering the room; this opens the iron door ahead. There are several skeevers down the path. The next room contains two frostbite spiders, followed by several draugr. It also contains an Alchemy Lab.

The next iron door leads to a larger room. On the altar lies the fragment needed to complete the quest. Behind the altar is a Word Wall that teaches a new Word of Power for Fire Breath when approached. After retrieving the fragment, several leveled draugr appear. At higher levels most of the enemies are draugr deathlords, and may appear if the Dragonborn is level 12. When facing higher level enemies, Farkas is of little help, and his Heavy Armor makes sneaking more difficult. Placing runes or casting Fireball near the spawn points of the draugr causes them to emerge prematurely, allowing them to be picked off one by one, before the fragment is grabbed. Detect Dead can be of use here.

Once the fragment is obtained and the enemies killed, going up the stairs and through the empty coffin returns the Dragonborn to Dustman's Cairn, where a quick path to the exit can now be found.

Return and reward[]

Upon returning to Jorrvaskr, Vilkas meets the Dragonborn and asks to be followed. Upon following him to the courtyard, Farkas vouches for the Dragonborn's competence during the mission, and the Dragonborn is formally inducted into the Companions.


Proving Honor – C01
ID Journal Entry
10 The Companions leaders say they don't have any more work for me, but that I should speak to Skjor about "the next steps."
  • Objective 10: Speak to Skjor
20 The Companions have given me one final challenge before inducting me. I'm to retrieve a fragment of Wuuthrad, the Blade of Ysgramor, from <Alias=Dungeon> while Farkas judges my valor.
  • Objective 20: Speak to Farkas
  • Objective 30: Retrieve the fragment
  • Objective 40: Return to Jorrvaskr
  • Objective 110: Follow Vilkas
200 I successfully retrieved a fragment of Wuuthrad, the Blade of Ysgramor, to earn my place in the Companions.
  • Quest complete
Note: While ID 20 directly refers to the location of the dungeon as "<Alias=Dungeon>", indicating that the location is randomly chosen from a list, the only possible location is Dustman's Cairn.


  • Despite what the quest description says, one is considered a member of the Companions once "Take Up Arms" is completed. This is for purposes of taking items from the hall, or being trained in Smithing by Eorlund Gray-Mane.
  • After seeing Farkas exhibit his lycanthropy, by turning into a werewolf, he may be asked, "The Companions are werewolves?" He responds with, "Not everyone, but all the members of the Circle are. It's a secret to everybody." This is a reference to The Legend of Zelda and the popular internet meme.
  • If the Dragonborn managed to run out of the trap room after pulling the lever, the gate will drop down and Farkas will walk to the gate and "talk" to the Dragonborn as if they're still behind it. All of the Dragonborn's actions will be locked until Farkas opens the gate.
  • When Farkas starts transforming, he drops his Skyforge steel greatsword on the ground. It can be kept or returned via reverse pickpocketing or simply trade it to him once he's available as a follower. After he opens the gate he equips an iron greatsword.
  • Near the end of the tomb, a member of the Silver Hand can be seen in a coffin, mimicking a draugr, in an attempt to surprise the Dragonborn.
  • Once in the crypt, if overwhelmed, sometimes going through the door leading to Dustman's Cairn will allow for an escape from the Silver Hand.
  • As the Silver Hand surround Farkas, one says, "If he wears that armor, he dies," even though he does not wear the wolf armor.
  • Dialogue exists in the Creation Kit suggesting that Aela the Huntress was originally supposed to accompany the Dragonborn during this quest, or she was supposed to accompany the Dragonborn and Farkas during the quest.
  • Because this dungeon cannot be accessed prior to the quest, it is listed on Dungeon Lock Outs.
  • After the quest is complete, wild werewolves can be encountered at night with Dawnguard installed.


This section contains bugs related to Proving Honor. 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.
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  • Farkas has a similar script to the hold guards. If the Dragonborn has a bounty, he may repeat dialogue that guards do when the Dragonborn commits a crime.confirmation needed
  • When Skjor needs to be spoken with, the quest marker points to Bleakwind Basin. Arriving at Bleakwind Basin, the quest marker directs back toward Whiterun, making the quest impossible to complete. If that happens, the "getting under Whiterun glitch" can be used to head towards the marker. He will be standing there under the textures.confirmation needed
  • Followers may not return to their homes after Farkas becomes a follower for the quest. Additionally, they may appear again in the Companions headquarters, where they'll need to be rehired, if applicable.confirmation needed
  • Fast traveling to Jorrvaskr may cause Farkas to not arrive there. After speaking to Skjor, and having the tablet removed, he says the leaders of the Companions need to be spoken with. They do not give the appropriate dialogue options.confirmation needed
    • Taking Farkas as a follower and fast traveling to Whiterun will trigger the initiation ceremony.confirmation needed
  • While walking around the cairn, the area may recolor to various shades of blue inappropriately.confirmation needed
  •  PS3   After completing the quest, Kodlak engages the Dragonborn in dialogue, which cannot be exited.confirmation needed
    •  PS3 (Fix)   Reloading an old save or using the Wait feature to wait around 12 hours fixes this issue.
  • Draugr in the Word Wall room may respawn an infinite number of times.confirmation needed
  •  PS4   If Farkas goes down on one knee while in the Word Wall room, he may not get back up even though he is at full health.
    •  PS4 (Fix)   Using the Unrelenting Force Shout at full power will result in him standing up and being able to follow the Dragonborn at normal speed.
  • The quest registers as completed in the journal, before being completed, making the next quest in the series impossible to initiate.
  • Sometimes Farkas will say "I cannot follow you because you already have a follower".confirmation needed
  • If the quest is turned in to Skjor at the end while he's going through a doorway between zones (this was encountered while we was leaving the basement of Jorrvaskr), he won't tell the Dragonborn to follow him, resulting in the Dragonborn being stuck.confirmation needed
  •  PC   360   PS4   Normally if having a follower when starting the quest they would become dismissed with the message: "Your Companion replaces your current follower." If Dawnguard has been installed and Serana is with the Dragonborn, she won't be dismissed.
  •  360   In some cases, after picking up the fragment, nothing happens. Draugr never spawn, thus the exit remains blocked, and the quest can never be completed. Since the quest can never be completed Farkas will always be a follower, and a new follower can never be taken.
  •  PC   While trapped inside the cage when the Silver Hand appears, sometimes Farkas doesn't turn into a werewolf; he only gets a black shadow around him and then everybody attacks each other. The quest continues on though, so this is not quest-breaking.
  • While trapped inside the cage when the Silver Hand appears, sometimes Farkas gets stuck in werewolf form. Waiting until Farkas approaches the other locked gate, then immediately entering the game menu, then closing it, seems to unlock the other gate and allow Farkas to continue with the quest script.confirmation needed
  •  PC   While trapped inside the caged gate, Farkas may float up into the open part of the ceiling and be unable to move, he will remain trapped on the rocks above. He will not engage the Silver Hand and the quest will not proceed.
    •  PC (Fix)   Reloading a previous save will fix this.
  • After Farkas has slain the Silver Hand, their bodies may continually slide away. Eventually, they pile up against a wall and begin to jiggle rapidly.confirmation needed
  •  360   After returning to Jorrvaskr, following Vilkas will lead to where the members of the Circle will be when the Companions initiation is performed. However, sometimes the initiation will not start, and everyone will be stuck there unable to be interacted with. This makes is impossible to continue with the Companions questline.
  •  PC   Vilkas may get stuck when other companions are blocking his path. If the Dragonborn approaches the Circle, Kodlak may start the initiation with the four members present and the quest will not complete.confirmation needed
    •  PC (Fix)   Waiting for Vilkas to join the Circle or reloading a prior save will fix this.
  •  PC   When Farkas turns into a werewolf, he will do the animation, but he will be human. He may be in the werewolf pose, but will be a skinned human. The Silver Hand will then start attacking each other.
  •  360   When the Word of Fire Breath is obtained, it does not appear in the Shout menu and cannot be used. Reloading does not fix this.
  • When fast traveling back to Whiterun, Vilkas will not spawn in front of Jorrvaskr, though if the initiation dialogue is started behind the hall, he will eventually run forward to join, though lines of dialogue will be missed.confirmation needed
  • Rarely, when using the Slow Time shout with the shield, the game will glitch and enemies stay frozen in time. The Dragonborn will be able to kill the enemies easily.confirmation needed