Elder Scrolls
Elder Scrolls

"Small blade. Easy to hide. I mean, sure, you could just swing a pickaxe into someone's face, but people tend to see that coming. Got a problem with a prisoner?"

The Shiv is a dagger initially found in Cidhna Mine.

Physical appearance[]

The shiv appears to be a sharpened nail or piece of metal that is about five inches in length, with cloth or thin leather wrapped and tied around one end to serve as a grip on the handle.


The shiv is the fourth-weakest weapon available, behind the fork, the wooden sword, the knife, and the phantom sword. It is classed as a dagger and thus is affected by the Assassin's Blade perk from the Sneak skill tree.

It cannot be improved at a grindstone, but it can be enchanted.



No One Escapes Cidhna Mine[]

A shiv is needed in exchange to get the key to Madanach's cell from Borkul the Beast. The shiv is also the only weapon available during the quest and can be used to kill others, specifically Madanach.


  • The shiv has the same damage rating as the pickaxe, but swings faster.
  • It is possible to obtain four shivs during the quest "No One Escapes Chidna Mine." Trade skooma to Grisvar the Unlucky for one, and then persuade Borkul to move aside, keeping the shiv. Two are obtained from Grisvar's corpse after being instructed to kill him. During the escape through the Markarth Ruins, one can be pickpocketed from Madanach.
    • More shivs can be obtained after the quest. Visit the cave where Madanach and his men hide after the quest. Many of the inhabitants inside carry a shiv, which then can be pickpocketed.
    • There is also an exploit to obtain unlimited shivs. Place an enchanted shiv in a dagger rack. The enchanted shiv will remain equipped, and an un-enchanted shiv will be in the rack (tested in Hjerim dagger rack, unlimited shivs with an absorb health enchantment, unconfirmed if any other enchantment works).