Elder Scrolls
Elder Scrolls

For other uses, see Soul Trap.

Soul Trap is an Apprentice level spell in the Conjuration school of magicka in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. It may also be used as a Weapon Enchantment.

Using Soul Trap[]

To capture a soul, there must be at least one empty soul gem in the inventory that is large enough to hold that soul. Either cast the Soul Trap spell on the target or attack it with a weapon enchanted with Soul Trap, then slay it before the duration of the effect runs out. If done correctly, the soul will be trapped in the first soul gem of sufficient size available in the inventory. If a soul gem of the exact size is unavailable, the soul will be trapped in a larger gem, if present, but if there are no soul gems large enough to hold the soul, then the soul will not be captured. A soul gem containing a less than optimal soul can be dropped, which will empty it (gems filled to capacity will not be emptied if dropped).

Usage success[]

  • When the kill is successful within the allotted time, a message will display on the screen, a confirmation sound may be heard, and the animation of soul absorption may be seen, similar to dragon soul absorption.
  • If a large enough empty soul gem is on hand, the message will be "Soul captured!"
  • If there is no empty gem, or one of a high enough level, the message will say "No soul gem large enough." and the spell fails.
  • If the spell expires before the intended victim dies, nothing will happen, and the spell must be recast to capture the soul.
  • The soul trap may be resisted and the soul not captured. If this happens, a message will appear at the top left of the screen saying "[target's name] resisted Soul Trap."

Spell tome[]



  • Weight: 1 WeightIcon
  • Value: 100 Gold
  • See Spell Tome for a complete table of spell tomes, their descriptions, and their values.



  • The Soul Stealer perk allows all Bound Weapons to automatically cast Soul Trap on enemies upon contact. The target still needs to be killed before the spell wears off for the soul to be captured and only one target may be affected at a time. Note that when a soul is captured with this perk, it will not activate the sound and visual effects normally seen when successfully soul trapping an enemy either via the spell or an enchanted weapon, but the message "Soul Captured!" will still appear.
  • Enchanting a dagger with Soul Trap or Fiery Soul Trap and having the Assassin's Blade perk is a highly effective method for filling Soul Gems.

Unique weapons[]


  • Sentient souls captured with a black soul gem will always be of Grand value, the same value as a grand soul gem.
  • Enchanting a bow with Soul Trap or Fiery Soul Trap and setting the duration to one second is highly effective for archers, as it provides a high number of uses and guarantees a soul, as each arrow reapplies the spell to the target, hence the killing shot will capture the target's soul.
  • While Soul Trap is active on a corpse, it cannot be reanimated. Therefore, spells like Raise Zombie and Reanimate Corpse will not work.
  • After completing the Dark Brotherhood questline and fully furnishing the torture chamber, soul trap may be cast on any/all of the four captives to raise the Conjuration skill.
  • It is possible to raise the Conjuration skill by casting Soul Trap on corpses and dead animals.
  • Dragon souls cannot be trapped, only consumed.
  • It can be used to execute Astrid at the conclusion of the Dark Brotherhood questline, if cast on her burnt body.
  • The Dragonborn cannot be soul trapped. It is possible for enemies to hit them with a Soul Trap effect, but even if they are killed, and the caster possesses a Black Soul Gem, their soul will not visibly leave their body in the fashion that other black souls do.
  • Giving a weapon that is enchanted with Soul Trap and some soul gems to a follower will not fill said soul gem if the follower kills an enemy with that weapon.confirmation needed


This section contains bugs related to Soul Trap (Skyrim). 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.
  •  PS3   Hitting a door with Soul Trap may cause it to glow purple and emit a hissing sound forever.
  •  PC   Using Soul Trap on a dead body will still increase the Conjuration skill as if cast on a living creature, despite having no effect.

See also[]