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Sage Svari of Fallowstone Hall shares the Companions’ knowledge.
Welcome back to the Loremaster’s Archive. Today, we’re exploring the topic of werewolves with a little help from Sage Svari. She presents a new lore book about the creatures and has taken the time to answer a few of your questions.
Next time, the Telvanni mage Divayth Fyr will cover Mephala, the least known of the so-called “Good Daedra.” Send your questions about the Daedric Prince or any other lore inquiries to community@elderscrollsonline.com!

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An Accounting of Werewolves

By Sage Svari of Fallowstone Hall
As a skald among the Companions, I learned to recite the Songs of Return. But now, as Sage of Fallowstone Hall, I must do more than memorize. It falls to me to record the deeds and glories of the Companions, preserve our names, and call on Ysgramor’s wisdom to guide those new to our ranks.
It surprised me to discover a few areas where our tomes of knowledge were scant or outdated, and I will do my best to fill in gaps as my first honorable task. I wish to begin by expanding An Accounting of Enemies, a reference to threats commonly faced by Companions compiled by Sage Tirora, my predecessor.
We’ve recently taken on more contracts involving werewolves than I’ve ever seen, and our recorded knowledge of them is sparse. I’ve spoken to Nords from Windhelm to Ivarstead, and everyone agrees that cults of Hircine (and thus werewolves, who are his children) are on the rise across Skyrim. I’ve even heard reports that some madmen have been actively seeking out the curse of lycanthropy!
I do not think I should need to remind anyone, especially any Nord, of the evil of the Daedric Princes—even of one who claims the joy of hunting as his realm. There may be some draw to the wild power of werewolves, but you’d better remember that you’ll never see the halls of Sovngarde when Hircine claims your soul. Lycanthropes spend eternity in Hircine’s Hunting Grounds, slaves to his unending thirst for blood and the chase, instead of drinking mead and brawling with the heroes of legend.
Ysgramor taught us to know our enemy through blood on our hands, and to scrawl our runes of conquest on the corpses in our wake. Our warriors have faced many werewolves, and while I don’t have any corpses handy at the moment (and because they would pollute the rather pleasant library we have), I will preserve their knowledge here:
Thonarcal Ice-Fist recalls his revulsion: “I saw one of them turn right before my eyes, and my blood ran cold. He got the jump on me, so stunned was I at the grotesque display. Be wary if your target is not already in its fearsome beast-form.”
Irmgarde the Bootbarren knows a secret of the beast: “Always keep a poisoned blade or arrow-tips handy when you hunt them. Even poisons that aren’t all that strong seem to ravage the monsters.”
Hallveig God-Hater has read the tale of their hides: “It seems to me that their pelts say something about them. The ones with darker fur use fast strikes and ragged claws to tear into you. Every now and then I’ve glimpsed a white one. They’re usually surrounded by a pack, howling and driving them into a frenzy in combat.”
Agdis Bearblood prays to the Divines: “Don’t get bitten or cut up by them. If you do, you’d better get yourself to a priest right away. The disease can be cured, but don’t risk letting it get into your blood.”

Sage Svari answers your questions:

Much is known about how both lycanthropy and vampirism spread, but the tales surrounding Molag Bal's creation of the first vampires are as gruesome and horrid as the God of Schemes himself. Yet my scales run dry with aggravation for never having found any legends surrounding the original creation of werewolves. So I ask you, do you have arcane lore or ancient legend to divulge on the matter of Hircine's creation of the first werewolves? -Rasheel of Moonmarch, scholar, explorer, adventurer
Svari says, “My researches into the subject continue, but to date I have discovered no definitive account of the origin of werewolves, though no one doubts that Lord Hircine was involved, if not instrumental. This lacuna is not really surprising, as the curse (or, some say, gift) of lycanthropy has been known in Tamriel since the early Merethic Era. No written accounts date from that time, as it was before Ysgramor brought writing to humankind, but I hold out hope of finding a later recording of an oral tradition.”

In Noxiphilic Sanguivoria, it was stated that "One of the more wild theories is that it is the result of some sort of Daedric backroom deal between Hircine and Molag Bal that has given sufferers of Noxiphilic Sanguivoria a werewolf-like love of moonlight." This is very interesting, could you expand upon the origin of this theory? – Dylan Barnes
Svari says, “Despite his name, Cinna Scholasticus, author of the book in question, is regarded by most serious scholars as a self-aggrandizing sensationalist. That said, the work is not entirely without merit, as most of it is cribbed from Doctor Zoorophim’s ‘Comprehensive Index of Cursed Afflictions,’ especially his chapter on Infectious Banes. However, the idea of an infernal bargain between Hircine and Molag Bal first appeared in a work of fiction, the notorious ‘Seventeen Tastes of Infamy’ by the Porphyry Caryatid, and must therefore be regarded as irresponsible speculation.”

What is the difference between Sanies Lupinus and Canis Hysteria? Canis Hysteria was mentioned in the Emperor's Guide from the ESO Collector's Edition: "[Glenmoril Witches] hold the secrets of Porphyric Hemophilia and Canis Hysteria in their jealous grasps." If they were referring to C. Hysteria as a species, then why would they pair that next to the vampire disease? Wouldn't Canis Hysteria also be disease too? – Kinetiks
Svari says: “The terms ‘Sanies Lupinus’ and ‘Canis Hysteria’ can be used interchangeably, though the former is more common, at least here in Skyrim.”

Further Reading:

The Legend of Fallen Grotto

Long ago, a man with seven sons and seven daughters lived in Bangkorai. Their home was in a deep and twisted cave at the edge of the woods.
The surrounding forest was filled with all manner of creatures: bears, wolves, badgers, and deer. Though his family was large, they never knew hunger, for the animals were plentiful and easy prey.
"We must give thanks for Hircine's blessing," said the man.
And the man prayed to Hircine, building within his home a shrine to the God of the Hunt. He painted the walls of the cave with pigments he made by combining animal fat with the earth. From the deer his children slew, the man took antlers to make an altar, and his wife braided hides into leather rugs to cover the dirt floor.
When the shrine was complete, the man and his family lit tallow candles and roasted an ox, pouring its blood onto the altar as they chanted prayers.
Suddenly, they heard a laugh, and before them stood Hircine himself, drawn by the death cry of the ox and the scent of its roasting flesh.
"You've done well!" Hircine cried, striding forward. He was clad in layers of animal hide, though his feet were bare.
"I am your faithful servant," said the man, groveling before his god.
"To prove your faith," said Hircine, "send forth your seven sons and seven daughters. I will hunt them from dawn until dusk and from dusk until dawn, until I am sated."
The man recoiled in horror. "I cannot do that!" he said. "You may take anything, but do not take my children from me!"
Eyes narrowing, Hircine raised one hand toward the cave's ceiling. Then he pointed to the ground with the other. Hircine screamed, and the walls collapsed inward, destroying the shrine and the man's home.
As dust curled upward like the smoke from an offering, sixteen forest trolls lumbered uncertainly from the debris, staggering from the grotto to the woods.
"You were not worthy of becoming beasts," Hircine remarked coolly, "but I shall hunt you anyway."


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