Elder Scrolls
Elder Scrolls

For other uses, see Soul Tear.

Soul Tear is a dragon shout in The Elder Scrolls V: Dawnguard.


This shout may cause a lot of damage by ripping the soul out of an opponent. If the shout kills the opponent, it fills a soul gem, and the opponent is raised from the dead as an ally. The shout cannot be used too close to the Dragonborn, so be sure to aim the crosshair away from the body. The soul trapping effect of Soul Tear only works when an empty soul gem is in the Dragonborn's possession. Furthermore, the shout only works when all three Words of Power are used.

The full shout deals 300 damage. Enemies killed with the full shout and below level 100 are Soul Trapped and then reanimated for 60 seconds. After that time or when killed, the reanimated corpse becomes an Ash Pile.

Word locations[]

Soul Tear is obtainable from the undead dragon, Durnehviir. During the Dragonborn's adventure in Soul Cairn, they defeat the dragon, Durnehviir. Later, he is encountered again and teaches the shout called Summon Durnehviir to the Dragonborn. The first three times Durnehviir is summoned, he teaches the Dragonborn the words of Soul Tear, one at a time, though dragon souls still must be spent to unlock the shout.

Summon Durnehviir must also be unlocked using souls, which essentially makes the full cost of unlocking Soul Tear 6 dragon souls instead of 3.


Soul Tear has the ability to place opponents under the Dragonborn's control who would otherwise be too powerful to raise by normal means, such as giants, making this an incredibly powerful shout if used correctly. Note that some warrior-type enemies will have their weapons knocked out of their hands when attacked with Soul Tear, and this will render them much less effective without them.

Because Soul Tear regenerates very quickly when the first two tiers of the Shout are used, it can be used to knock back opponents more frequently than when using, for example, Unrelenting Force, which has a longer cooldown for the first two tiers.

Though dragons are immune to the Soul Trap and Reanimate aspects of Soul Tear, they will still sustain the 300 points of damage, making it a surprisingly effective attack against them (particularly at lower levels).


This section contains bugs related to Soul Tear (Dawnguard). 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.
  •  360   Sometimes after learning a word, it can't be unlocked with a dragon soul, even if the Dragonborn has a sufficient amount of them.
  •  360   The game will sometimes freeze after learning a word and trying to unlock it with a Dragon soul.
  •  360   Sometimes after receiving permission to call Durnehviir to Tamriel, prolonging the conversation (asking about his past) will skip learning the shout.
  •  360   Using Soul Tear on soldiers during any of the Civil War quests to take over a fort, where the bodies are scripted to disappear after death may cause the game to freeze.
  •  PC   PS3   With enough dragon souls, the Dragonborn can unlock the Summon Durnehviir shout fully whilst still in the Soul Cairn. If summoned in the Soul Cairn, he will act as though the Dragonborn summoned him back on Mundus and teaches the Dragonborn the first word of Soul Tear.