"You are my new host. Know this now and resolutely. You are not worthy to carry the Totem of Tiber Septim. Only those of his blood line may carry me. I will give you a year and a day to accomplish this."
―The Totem of Tiber Septim[src]

The Totem of Tiber Septim, also known simply as Totem, was an item heavily sought after during the events of The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall and acquiring it is one of the main objectives in the game. The device itself was required in order to control a great construct, the golem Numidium. Due to the immense power of Tiber Septim's golem, many believed that whoever controlled the device controlled the fate of Tamriel.[1]

In Daggerfall, the Totem can be given to either Queen Akorithi, King Eadwyre, King Gothryd, Gortwog gro-Nagorm, the King of Worms, Lady Brisienna, or the Underking, for varying rewards.

Quests[edit | edit source]

Totem as it appears in the inventory

Totem, Totem, Who Gets the Totem?[edit | edit source]

Acquire the Totem of Tiber Septim from the Castle Daggerfall Treasury, then decide who to award it to.

History[edit | edit source]

Origins[edit | edit source]

The Totem of Tiber Septim was originally created by the Imperial Battlemage, Zurin Arctus, under orders of Tiber Septim as a means in which the Numidium could be controlled. In order to ensure that the Totem would never fall into the wrong hands, Zurin put a seal on it so that only a person of the Septim Bloodline, or someone with a supernatural existence like Zurin himself, could wield its power; anyone who attempted to use it without meeting its requirements would die instantly.[1][2] However, in later years, the witch Nulfaga would discover a loophole in this seal, that being that a person of royal blood could also utilize the Totem.[3]

When Tiber Septim betrayed Zurin, causing the death of the battlemage,[4][5] Tiber Septim began using the Numidium to crush the neutral royal families of Tamriel and replace them with more loyal subjects. The Underking heavily disapproved of this use of Numidium and decided to destroy the Dwemer golem. In the ensuing fight, the Numidium was destroyed and all its pieces were lost, including the its power source, Mantella, and the Totem of Tiber Septim. Without the Mantella, The Underking was forced to enter a long hibernation period as he used up all his energy in his fight with Numidium. Since that day, the Blades endeavored to recover all the pieces of Numidium.[1][6]

Events of Daggerfall[edit | edit source]

Totem of Tiber Septim, lying on a pedistal within the Daggerfall Treasury

By the year 3E 401, the Blades had recovered all the pieces of Numidium, save for one, the Mantella. The Numidium had been reassembled and the Totem was in their hands but without the power source the Numidium was useless. In her astral travels the mother of King Lysandus, Nulfaga, discovered the whereabouts of the Mantella and promised to disclose its location to Uriel Septim VII as long as he agreed to never use the Numidium to attack Lysandus' Kingdom. However, Uriel disagrees with Nulfaga's request.[6]

At some point, the Blades inexplicably lost possession of the Totem of Tiber Septim and had no choice but to search for the device again.[6] The Blades would later discover that by unknown means, Lord Woodborne gained possession of the Totem. In order to retrieve it, the Blades sacked Woodborne Hall but to the astonishment of the Blades, the Totem was nowhere to be found. An undercover Blades agent known as Lady Brisienna had reason to believe that Gothryd, the then current king of Daggerfall, had stolen the device. Brisienna sent the Agent of Daggerfall to recover the artifact which was located within the Daggerfall treasury.[7]

After the Agent acquired the Totem, multiple individuals seeking the device sent him letters promising great rewards in return for gifting them the Totem.[8][9][10][11] While the Agent did choose to give the Totem to one of its seekers,[12] the subsequent activation of the Numidium created a Dragon Break in which several timelines were created each centering around the goals of the Totem's claimants; these timelines were then reconciled in such a way as to cause each potential claimant to gain at least some of what they wanted. For example, the major rulers who each wanted the entirety of the Iliac Bay each received large tracts of the surrounding lands rather than any of them receiving all of it. This event was known as the Warp in the West.[13]

Retrieving the totem[edit | edit source]

Upon retrieving the totem, the following message plays:

A voice in your head intones...

"You are {{Hide|Agent|Player name. You are my new host. Know this now and resolutely. You are not worthy to carry the Totem of Tiber Septim. Only those of his blood line may carry me. I will give you a year and a day to accomplish this."

Appearances[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

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