Elder Scrolls
Elder Scrolls

"We Gray-Manes have been feuding with the Battle-Borns for years. There's no more bitter enemy than an old friend."
―Vignar Gray-Mane[src]

Vignar Gray-Mane, also known as Vignar the Revered,[1] is an elderly Nord member of the Gray-Mane clan in Whiterun. He is a supporter of the Stormcloaks and respected figure in the city, albeit not by Olfrid Battle-Born. If the Dragonborn sides with the Stormcloaks during the Civil War questline and conquers Whiterun, he will become the Jarl.



Vignar has a brother, Eorlund Gray-Mane, who is married to Fralia. He is the uncle of Avulstein, Olfina and Thorald Gray-Mane.

Great War[]

Vignar was a commander in the Imperial Legion for thirty years; he fought in the Great War. He says when the Empire signed the White-Gold Concordat, it shamed everyone. The Gray-Manes and the Battle-Borns used to be friends, though that was until the Battle-Borns chose the Empire's side during the Civil war.

The Companions[]

Vignar claims to have been a great warrior long ago and joined the Companions sometime in his youth. He seems to be the oldest member of The Companions; Kodlak suggests that he witnessed the rise and fall of about half a dozen Harbingers. Vilkas also mentions that he knows the Companions' history "as well as Vignar by now," except he can actually remember it.

Clan Battle-Born[]

Of all the Gray-Manes, Vignar seems to be the one who is most opposed to the Battle-Borns, with both women in the family having lines about the two clan's feud's stupidity, and the other men not commenting.

Civil War aftermath[]

Vignar Gray-Mane replaces Balgruuf the Greater as the Jarl of Whiterun, if the Dragonborn helps the Stormcloaks take over Whiterun in The Battle for Whiterun. He also mentions plans to build a Temple of Talos in Whiterun, and makes Heimskr the High Priest.

Jarl Vignar Gray-Mane


Battle for Whiterun (Stormcloaks)[]

When Balgruuf surrenders, Vignar will walk in and accept a new title as a Jarl.

Season Unending[]

The Dragonborn must talk to the Jarl of Whiterun, Balgruuf or Vignar, to try and convince him to let them use Dragonsreach, which was originally designed to capture and house a dragon.

The Fallen[]

The Dragonborn must talk to the Jarl of Whiterun, Balgruuf or Vignar, to try and convince him to let them use Dragonsreach, so the Dragonborn are able to trap one of Alduin's dragon allies and interrogate him for information.

Thane of Whiterun[]

Placing Vignar Gray-Mane on the throne as Jarl of Whiterun, the Dragonborn's status as Thane is revoked. To become a Thane again, the Dragonborn must get a promotion from Vignar.


"We Gray-Manes have been feuding with the Battle-Borns for years. There's no more bitter enemy than an old friend."

Why did you join the Companions? "When you get to be my age, you don't remember why you did much of anything. Only that it happened."
Who are the Companions? "They used to be something. Nowadays they just squabble amongst themselves. Take my advice and keep away. You look too smart to get caught up with this bunch."
Your clans used to be friends? "Aye, we used to be fast friends, though it was long ago. We were two of the city's oldest an' most-respected clans, an' we could trace our histories all the way back to Ysgramor's companions. But then Olfrid got rich an' decided he and his kin were too good for us simple, backwards Nord folk. When the troubles began, he took the Empire's side. We haven't spoken much since then."
Tell me about the Gray-Manes. "We've got an old saying -- the Gray-Manes have lived in Whiterun since the first snows fell in Skyrim. Well, maybe that's not entirely true, but our clan's got a long an' proud history in this hold. We respect the old ways, the Nord ways, an' a Gray-Mane has worked the Skyforge since before the time of my grandfather's father."
What about your rivals, the Battle-Borns? "Aye, they're an old clan like ours, but they cast their lot with the Empire when the uprising began. Olfrid Battle-Born made his money from farming, an' got himself some new friends among the Empire's nobles. Now he's in the Emperor's pocket like the rest of 'em, with no regard for honor an' tradition."

"I was done talkin' anyway."

The Companions

"You're lookin' at a real warrior! At least I used to be."

What does it mean to be a Companion? "My advice? Don't overthink it. Fight well and the rest takes care of itself."

"Whiterun once again belongs to its rightful heirs. It's a glorious day for Skyrim."

What are your top priorities as the new Jarl? "Well, first an' foremost there's repairs to make an' wounds to heal. Folks are depending on us getting the city back in working order. Once things settle down, I'll be lookin' to recruit more guards for the city, then shore up our stores of food an' water. The Empire might try an take the city back, or worse, we'll get a visit from a dragon. We've got to be ready for both."
Will you restore the worship of Talos? "Aye, with a certainty. It was Talos that helped us win back the city. I'm as sure of that as the sun rising in the morning. Might even build a new temple and put Heimskr in charge of it. Hah! I bet he'd like that."

"I was done talkin' anyway."


Quest-related dialogue[]

Battle for Whiterun[]

During the final moments of the quest "Battle for Whiterun," Vignar Gray-Mane will enter Dragonsreach and a final conversation will take place between him and Balgruuf:

Vignar: "Balgruuf!"
Balgruuf: "Vignar Gray-Mane! Your family was noticeably absent from the walls. Now I know why. Wouldn't a dagger in the back have sufficed?"
Vignar: "You think this is personal? The Empire has no place in Skyrim... not any more. And you? You have no place in Whiterun anymore."
Balgruuf: "A convenient position to hold now. But mark my words, old man, in the days to come, Ulfric will spread his rebellion thin. And what then? We need the Empire, as much as it needs us. We Nords are the Empire! Our blood built it. Our blood sustains it! You of all people should know that."
Vignar: "If this was my Empire, I'd be able to worship whoever I damned well pleased. You wish to see an Empire without Talos? Without its soul? We should be fighting those witch-elves, not bending knee to them. The Emperor is nothing more than a puppet of the Thalmor. Skyrim needs a High King who will fight for her, and Whiterun needs a Jarl who will do the same."
Balgruuf: "Tell me, Vignar. Was all this worth it? How many of those corpses lining our streets wear the faces of men who once called you friend? What about their families?"
Galmar: "Enough! Both of you! There is a burning city out there that needs a government."
Vignar: "He's right. Galmar, come, let us restore order."

Balgruuf: "This isn't over. You hear me you old fool! This isn't over! And you. A Stormcloak? I'd thought better of you. (Referring to the Dragonborn.) You'll all come to regret this day."

If spoken to after that in the palace during the quest, he will only say, "They will sing stories of this day."

A chill in the air[]

Vignar: "There's a chill in the air. Ysmir's beard, it gets colder in here every day."
Brill: "That's just you getting skinnier every day, old man. You're losing your padding. You need to eat more."
Vignar: "Well, if my layabout manservant fed me more, that wouldn't be a problem."
Brill: "Oho! Manservant? Is that what I am now?"
Vignar: "My mistake. A manservant wouldn't let me starve or freeze. I let you live here, and now I'm two steps closer to the grave."
Brill: "Old man, without me, you would have withered away a long time ago."

Vignar: "Hmph. Damn you for being right."

Mutton stew[]

Vignar: "You ain't made me that stew in a long time."
Brill: "Which, the mutton or the vegetable?"
Vignar: "Mutton."

Brill: "Hmm, so I haven't. All right, I'll buy the ingredients tomorrow and we can have it for dinner."

Iron Hearts[]

Brill: "Fancy a game of Iron Hearts later?"
Vignar: "You going to lose horribly, and then say you let me win?"
Brill: "Probably."

Vignar: "Then you're on."


Balgruuf: "I won't say it again, Vignar; Talos worship is forbidden. It's the Empire's law, and we're still a part of the Empire."
Vignar: "A law made at the tip of an Aldmeri sword, aye. A sword stained red with Nord blood. Is this what our people fought and died for? To forsake our most beloved ancestor and divine?"
Balgruuf: "I'm no happier about this than you are, but I don't want the [sic] [Do not change this to to. This misspelled word is how it appears in-game.] see the Thalmor rounding up people in the streets and throwing them in prison."
Vignar: "Do your loyalties lie with the Thalmor, then?"
Balgruuf: "I warn you, Gray-Mane, you are treading on dangerous ground."

Vignar: "Don't threaten me, boy. You're either a Nord who respects our traditions, or you're not. If not, it isn't me you'll have to answer to, but the people of this city and this Hold."

Note: the preceding conversation never actually occurs during the game, as Balgruuf and Vignar never have the chance to speak of it.[2]


  • "When the Empire surrendered to the Aldmeri Dominion, they shamed us all!"
  • "You're lookin' at a real warrior! At least I used to be."
  • "Look at you! Betcha think you're something, huh?"
  • "For thirty years, I served the Legion as a commander. Fought in the Great War."
  • "The people saw fit to name me Jarl, and I don't intend to let them down." –As Jarl
  • "They will sing stories of this day." –As Jarl


  • Occasionally, if a bugged Stormcloak Soldier spawns in Whiterun, and the guards of Whiterun attack him, Vignar may attack the guards.
  • Vignar was voiced by Jim Cummings, who amusingly also voiced his rival, Olfrid Battle-Born.
  • Vignar will comment on a fight that takes place between two Companions when the Dragonborn first enters Jorrvaskr.
  • Even as the Jarl he may still attend the Dragonborn's wedding.
  • The Companions seem to hold Vignar in high regard, since they call him "Vignar the Revered." It is speculated by Ulfberth War-Bear that they do this because of his history as a great hero.[1]


This section contains bugs related to Vignar Gray-Mane. 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.
  •  PC   360   PS3   If he is nearby when a Whiterun Guard is attacked, he will draw a sword and fight alongside the attacker.
  •  360   PS3   He may attack the Dragonborn for an unknown reason, it could be because of accidentally killing a Companion follower. Brill may also join in the fight against the Dragonborn but no other Companions will help either side even though they wake up when the fight comes near and run away. If the Dragonborn is married to Aela she will help, which can result in their deaths.
  •  360   When he becomes the Jarl he will sometimes fail to give the option to become a Thane.
  •  PC   After becoming Jarl, he may simply stand in front of the gate, occasionally wandering to Dragonsreach at night, but returning in the morning.
  •  PC   360   PS3   If he becomes Jarl, he will not go to Dragonsreach until you have joined the Companions, as he and Brill will be in Jorrvaskr watching two of the Companions brawl.
  •  PC   360   PS3   If the Dragonborn attacks a child in Whiterun, Vignar may try to attack the child and chase them around Whiterun until the child flees or goes into a building. The same thing occurs to Eorlund Gray-Mane and all Companions members in the area at the time.



  1. 1.0 1.1 Dialogue with Ulfberth War-Bear if Vignar becomes Jarl
  2. Creation Kit