Elder Scrolls Quests:Paarthurnax


Quest Giver Esbern or Delphine
Prerequisite Season Unending
Next Quest None
Reward Allies with the Blades
Ability to recruit followers for Blades
Faction Blades
Type Side Quest
QuestID MQPaarthurnax



Delphine and Esbern have learned of Paarthurnax’s position as leader of the Greybeards. They inform the Dragonborn of Paarthurnax’s role as Alduin’s second-in-command during the Dragon War and his responsibility for the atrocities committed. Bound by their oaths as Blades, they cannot offer the Dragonborn further assistance until Paarthurnax is slain. This quest is optional; it does not need to be completed in order to finish the main quest.


This quest is purely optional. In order to continue Blades storyline, it must be completed before the conclusion of the Main Quest. However, doing so will prevent any further communication with the Greybeards, including the radiant quest to locate Words of Power. Players who decide to kill Paarthurnax, however, receive a different conclusion to the main storyline.

Killing Paarthurnax

He should be very easy compared to Alduin. Dragonbane is useful here as always. Dragonrend will bring Paarthurnax to the ground, and Fire Breath is useful for damaging Paarthurnax.

How NOT to kill Paarthurnax (PC only)

It is possible to complete this quest without needing to slay Paarthurnax by using command

This way, Paarthurnax will remain alive, the Greybeards will still be hospitable and the Blades will talk once more.

There are also mods available to bypass this quest or the player could use the console command (setessential <baseID> 0) and kill the Blades instead.


  • Speaking to Arngeir regarding the Blades’ request, he will tell the Dragonborn about Paarthurnax’s reason for siding with Alduin and later, his rebellion which brought to Alduin’s first demise. There is the option to tell Arngeir, Paarthurnax must die or that he is going to be spared. This will affect the conversation between Esbern and Arngeir if in Season Unending, during the negotiation of a treaty.
  • Should the Civil War questline be complete (thus bypassingSeason Unending ) and the player proceeds directly to the endgame, Delphine and Esbern will remain in Sky Haven Temple. However, they remain in disapproval and the quest disappears from the log.
  • There is no actual way of denying the request of the Blades, other than console commands/mods on the PC.
  • Without Arngeir, it is still possible to get radiant quests for words of power by shouting in a town and waiting for a Letter from a Friend.
  • This quest is still possible to complete after completing Season Unending by depleting all of Paarthurnax’s health then quickly fast traveling to Sky Haven Temple.
  • It is possible to kill Paarthurnax dirrectly after the quest, Alduin’s Bane, since he is no longer an essential character. Once he is dead, travel to Sky Haven Temple and talk to Esbern. He will introduce the Dragonborn to the quest to kill Paarthurnax, but you can tell him Paarthurnax is already dead. (Also, this will NOT interfere with the Peace Treaty mission at High Hrothgar later.


This section contains bugs related to Paarthurnax (Quest). Before adding a bug to this list, consider the following:

Confirm all bugs with other editors on the talk page before adding them below.
Always try reloading an old save first, before asking for assistance.
Don’t discuss possible bug fixes or origins. Leave those and all other first-person-anecdotes on the talk page, not the article.
Always add  360  ,  PS3  , and  PC   to clarify which system the bug appears on.

PC   360   PS3  Paarthurnax is invincible, immediately after receiving the quest because he is perched on the altar. However, this can be exploited to level up one’s skills. Possible solutions are as follows:
Solution: Reload a previous save. Also, do not engage in conversation before killing him.
PC   360   PS3  Solution: Get your follower to attack him. Paarthurnax will fly up and get into an attack position; from there you can kill him.
360   Follower says that attacking Paarthurnax is “not possible” so the above option may not work.
Solution: Use Dragonrend and attack a few times.
Solution: Keep attacking Paarthurnax until his health runs out, even if he never leaves his perch. Once his health runs out, it will start regenerating. Fast travel somewhere, and, when it loads, it should say that you killed Paarthurnax.
Solution: Do not use Dragonrend on Paarthurnax; let him fly off. If he doesn’t fly off, try using ranged attacks (magic may work more often).
Solution: Attack Paarthurnax with Mehrune’s Razor (possibly due to the instant kill enchantment on the blade) which entices him to reciprocate combat and attack you.
Solution: Attack him with Paralyze while not sneaking. He will leave the altar and will then become killable.
Solution: Shoot him with a Ebony Bow and a Elven Arrow while sneaking.
Solution: Get Paarthurnax off of the altar.
PC   360   PS3  Solution: Once you have returned to the Throat of The World after defeating Alduin, speak with Paarthurnax. After a brief dialogue, he will begin to fly away. Once he is hovering in the air saying his final farewells, attack him a couple times, and he will become a killable target and will try to fight you. This method allows you to complete the main quest line and also continue the Blades quest line at the same time.
360   PS3   The quest will disappear from the journal.
Solution: Attack and kill him. However, in some cases Paarthurnax will remain invincible even after the quest has disappeared, preventing further progress in the Blades storyline.
PC   360   PS3  After the first fight with Alduin, you must speak with Paarthurnax; after initiating dialogue with him, he may randomly fly into the air and spin in circles while dialogue remains active. He will get too high and you won’t know what he is saying without subtitles.
Solution: Exit the dialogue and go back to Paarthurnax later.
After you have finished the main dragon questline, you will most likely still encounter this glitch although his dialogue will vanish.
If you finish the civil war quests and skip Season Unending you must go to Sky Haven Temple and talk to Esbern or Delphine for this quest to trigger. (DO NOT think this is a way to be able to talk to both Blades and Greybeards forever; the second you walk into Sky Haven Temple after The Fallen you are not a member and taking items is theft.)
It is possible if you try to defeat Odaviing before finishing this quest. Odhaviing will be invincible, therefore making it impossible to progress further unless you kill Paarthurnax first.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.