- "Your world would have been better off if the Planemeld had succeeded. Had you bowed before me and accepted eternal servitude, I would have protected you. There are worse masters than I. Far worse." —Molag Bal
Molag Bal (Stone-Fire, or literally "Fire Stone" in the Aldmeri language) is the Daedric Prince whose sphere is the domination and enslavement of mortals. He is known as the God of Schemes, the King of Rape, the Corrupter, the Tormentor of Men, the Lord of Lies,  the Lord of Domination, the Harvester of Souls, the Lord of Brutality, Molag the Slave-Lord, the Sower of Strife, the Prince of Pain, the Captain of Corruption, the Father of Torment, the King of Corruption,  the Elder Spirit of Domination and Supreme Law,  and the Prince of Rage. His main desire is to harvest the souls of mortals and to bring them within his sway by spreading seeds of strife and discord in the mortal realms. To this end, he obsessively collects a great number of soul gems, and has even dragged pieces of Nirn into his realm to satisfy his insatiable desire for conquest. The more souls he collects, the more he wants.
Molag Bal values patience and cunning. He does not hesitate to deceive those he deals with, and is capable of waiting exceedingly long periods of time to carry out the schemes he prepares. He also takes great pleasure in the suffering of mortals, and often has them tortured for his amusement. The Prince has a penchance for necromancy, often employing the use of the risen dead and forcing his followers to serve beyond the grave. He is intimately familiar with death and is capable of preserving live mortals for extended periods of time to prolong their suffering.
Molag Bal has a son, Ozzozachar, who is a Daedric Titan. He also has a daughter named Molag Grunda, a Winged Twilight who fell in love with the lowly Frost Atronach Nomeg Gwai. Molag Bal did not approve of the relationship and had them both banished to Oblivion, so they could be punished for eternity. His enemies are Ebonarm, Boethiah, Meridia, and Mephala. Molag Bal is allied with Azura. His summoning day is Chil'a.
Molag Bal was responsible for the destruction of the Bosmeri settlement of Gil-Var-Delle at the end of the First Era, when he was summoned by King Dro'Zel of Senchal. His corrupting influence lingered into the second era.
In the year 582 of the second era, Molag Bal attempted to merge Nirn with his plane of Coldharbour in an event known as the Planemeld. However, this campaign was halted by the Vestige. A last-ditch effort to claim the Mundus for his own occurred not long after, while his forces occupied the Imperial City. Their orders were to locate and destroy the Sublime Brazier so the Dragonfires could never be lit again. This plot, along with a ritual known as the Planemeld Obverse which involved an Elder Scroll, were also foiled.
He is credited with the creation of two species of Daedra, both involved in his experiments in a facility known as The Vile Laboratory. The Xivkyn and the Daedric Titan are the products of his fascination with vestigial hybridization and the Dragons' dominion over mortalkind respectively. Both of these species were released upon the people of Tamriel for the first time during Molag Bal's invasion of Nirn.
Religion and Culture
Molag Bal is a Daedric power of much importance in Morrowind, where he is always the archenemy of Boethiah, the Prince of Plots. He is seen as a primary obstacle to the Dunmer people (and their Chimer predecessors). In the legends, Molag Bal always tries to upset the bloodlines of Houses or otherwise ruin Dunmeri 'purity'. He is also known as the god of rape, is said to be the parent (along with Vivec) of a population of mutant degenerates living in the Molag Amur region of Vvardenfell. He is known to the Dunmer as one of the four corners of the House of Troubles.
Molag Bal has been referred to in Ayleid legends as Mola Gbal, the patron deity of Abagarlas. Additionally, the Bretons of the Iliac Bay share stories about the "Terrible Torchbug of Molag Bal" the night before Waking Day. The stories vary, but the one consistent part of every variation of the tale involves a fearsome, savage entity being in the presence of blue torchbugs.
Some tribes of the ancient Khajiit knew him as Molagh, one of the twelve Demon Kings and the Elder Spirit of Domination and Supreme Law. In some forms of Khajiiti mythos, Molagh was the first to attempt an assault on the Lunar Lattice with intent, alongside Merrunz and Merid-Nunda before being brought down by Boethra and Azurah. Amun-dro's writings specifically say that he is to be faced along the Path and overcome by the Will Against Rule, a concept associated with Boethra. Molagh is not known to appear in any other Khajiiti tales or myths.
One legend claims that Molag Bal created the first vampire when he raped a Nedic virgin named Lamae Beolfag, who in turn slaughtered a group of nomads. He has also made pacts with mortals and bestowed the power of vampirism upon them. One such example is Lord Harkon and his family. It is implied that Lord Harkon and his family are the original Volkihar Clan of vampires, having been turned by the Daedric Prince himself.
The Mace of Molag Bal
The Mace of Molag Bal, also known as the Vampire's Mace, is a Daedric artifact attributed to Molag Bal, the Lord of Domination and Enslavement. Its enchantment drains the stamina and magicka of its victims and transfers them to the bearer. It also has been known to have the ability to transfer an enemy's strength to its wielder or trap their soul. It has been said to be a good weapon of choice for vanquishing wizards.
Many legends surround the mace, but its origins can be traced back to when Molag Bal deceived an Orcish blacksmith and enslaved him in pits of Coldharbour. The blacksmith was turned into a Soul Shriven and forced to forge the mace.
Due to Molag Bal's penchant for meddling in mortal affairs, he grants the mace to those he deems worthy but has also been quite free with his artifact. Molag Bal assumes that when such a powerful artifact falls into mortal hands, a trail of death and destruction is sure to follow. Some believe the mace to be an object of Daedra worship.
The Mortuum Vivicus
The Mortuum Vivicus was a powerful weapon created by the Daedric Prince Molag Bal. It has no physical form, instead appearing as a large orb of cold light. It was originally given as a gift to the Ayleid King Anumaril of Abagarlas, a Daedraphile settlement on City Isle that was dedicated to Bal. The Abagarlans planned to use the Vivicus to drain all life from the rival city of Delodiil and convert its citizens to undead servants of Molag Bal, as penance for King Cenedelin's mockery of the temple of Abagarlas. The Meridia-worshipping city of Delodiil responded by forging a powerful weapon imbued with the Prismatic Core, a powerful crystal given to them by Meridia. An elite group of warriors were then sent to Abagarlas to preemptively destroy the Vivicus. However, Bal snatched the weapon away right before it could be destroyed, returning it to his realm of Coldharbour for safekeeping.
The Vivicus would lie dormant in the Halls of Submission for several thousand years, until in 2E 582 Molag Bal began an all-out attack on Mundus during his attempted Planemeld. Using the power of the unprecedented amount of souls being sacrificed in his name, Bal hoped to return the weapon to Tamriel and "burn" the entire continent. The Fighters Guild had come under the sway of Meridia, with its guildmaster murdered and replaced by one of her worshippers, and enough money provided to dedicate the guild's entire resources towards destroying Bal's Dark Anchors and preventing the return of the Vivicus. Seeking to reveal Guildmaster Sees-All-Colors' treachery and thwart Meridia's plans, Molag Bal had his own servant, Aelif, work alongside the guildmaster and the Vestige. Aelif betrayed the guild at the last second, although she was defeated in combat by the Vestige and the Mortuum Vivicus was destroyed using the reforged Prismatic Core.
Harvest Hearts are artifacts that Molag Bal uses to enslave large communities and empower specific parts of his divine portfolio.
During the Planemeld, the Vestige destroyed a Heart within a portion of Coldharbour known as the Orchard. That particular heart greatly increased the rate at which the vampirism spreads, and turned a few of the Coldharbour invasion force's own into bloodfiends. While that Heart was intact, the vampires in the Orchard were completely under Molag Bal's control, unable to disobey their orders to protect the area.
Coldharbour is a realm of Oblivion created and ruled over by Molag Bal, the Daedric Prince of Domination. As befits his sphere, Bal's realm is a desolate, apocalyptic image of Nirn, which is achieved by both mocking imitation and outright theft of parts of the mortal realm. It is inhabited by Daedra and the eternally-tormented souls of mortals called Soul Shriven. Descriptions of the plane vary widely, but all accounts agree that Coldharbour is a dismal, cold, and largely lifeless realm.
Molag Bal maintains a strong military within his realm. He expects complete loyalty from his servants, and does not tolerate weakness among his ranks. Daedra most commonly seen in his service include Dremora, Clannfear, Daedroth, Grievous Twilights, Daedric Titans, Cold-Flame Atronachs, Banekin and Harvesters. Ogrim, Scamps, Watchers, Winged Twilights, Xivilai, Spider Daedra and Dark Seducers are also found in his service. The Xivkyn are a Daedric race that is exclusively loyal to Molag Bal, and serve as his personal guard.
The Dremora among his servants are divided into two clans, the Deathbringers and the Foolkillers, who struggle against each other for prominence within Molag Bal's ranks. During the Interregnum, the Deathbringers were at the forefront of this struggle. Their Valkynaz was a trusted servant of Molag Bal whom was tasked with guarding the key to the Prince's inner sanctum and had access to the Daedric Prince himself. Three other Dremora are known to have been part of Molag Bal's inner council. Aside from playing a role in Coldharbour's politics, they fill Molag Bal's ranks as common infantry.
It is a fairly simple task to discern a minion of Molag Bal from those in service to another Prince. The easiest way to figure this out is by looking at their eyes. The eyes of Daedra within Molag Bal's service tend to be icy blue, just like their masters', and many of the servants of Molag Bal have blue or blue-grey skin.
The rules that govern Molag Bal's minions are outlined in two known doctrines: the Seven-Hundred-and-One Edicts is the primary set of rules, and the Mandatory Codicils cover special cases. Breaking one of these rules lands one a sentence to a facility known as the Scathe Rings, where those imprisoned can be sentenced to many painful punishments. One such punishment is "Second-Degree Gradual Discorporation". Strict uniform codes are among the guidelines that govern Bal's servants.
Molag Bal has appointed quite a few powerful servants to serve as generals or other high-ranking officers. Among these servants are spies, agents of chaos, brutal prison wardens, and gifted mages. Molag Bal values cunning as well as strength, and seems to grant power to those he finds interesting or strong... even if their claim to fame is upsetting the balance of power amongst the other Daedra within his service. Though he would prefer his military hierarchy remains stable, he has rewarded servants of his for displays of guile in the past.
Mortals also play a role in serving the Prince. Apart from the cultists that worship him on Nirn, Molag Bal has the Soul-Shriven and Mind-Shriven as slaves, with the Dremora as their common overseers. Vampires may also be found in his service.
As seen in Daggerfall
Molag Bal's shrine in Morrowind
Molag Bal's shrine in Oblivion
A shrine to Molag Bal, as seen in Skyrim
A statue of Molag Bal, as seen in Elder Scrolls Online
Concept art of the Ruddy Man
- Daedra Dossier: The Titans by Denogorath the Dread Archivist — Notes on the origin of Daedric Titans
- How We Came to Coldharbour — A history of the Argonian village of Haj Uxith, and the Hist's pact with Molag Bal
- The House of Troubles — Chronicle of the Daedra who decided not to submit to the Tribunal
- The Improved Emperor's Guide to Tamriel: Dreams of Cyrodiil by Flaccus Terentius
- Naryu's Journal/Imperial City by Naryu Virian — The illustrated diary of a Morag Tong assassin
- On the Nature of Coldharbour by Phrastus of Elinhir — A lecture on Coldharbour
- Opusculus Lamae Bal ta Mezzamortie by Mabei Aywenil, Scribe — A brief account of Lamae Bal and the Restless Death
- Protocols of the Court of Contempt by Judge Xiven — Protocols for a Daedric court
- The Slave Pits of Coldharbour — Instructions for Dremora taskmasters in the service of Molag Bal
- The Spawn of Molag Bal — Brief description of Molag Bal and his relationship to Vampires
- Stonefire Ritual Tome — A Stonefire cult text praising Molag Bal
- Molag Bal forbade ordinary Flame Atronachs from being summoned in his realm after a subordinate conjured one in his palace, and it damaged his favorite ice sculpture. Their presence was eventually replaced by the much cooler Cold-Flame Atronachs.
- Molag Bal once imprisoned one of his minions in a nanoplane for putting a whoopie-cushion on his throne in an incident known as "The Seat of Tyranny Rude Cushion Incident".
- If one of Molag Bal's servants is "put on trial" for their transgressions, they are tried in a facility known as the Court of Contempt, where they are entitled to a counsel of Scamps outfitted in puffy wigs. Scamps are not allowed to speak in the Court of Contempt. The Court has a one-hundred-percent conviction rate of defendants, otherwise known as "the Guilty". The name of this facility is a spoiler for the outcome of every trial that goes on within.
- On the subject of facilities in his realm, there is a place known as the Library of Dusk located in Coldharbour. The Library of Dusk is filled with propaganda, or "the truth according to Molag Bal". There is, however, another library in the realm. It is located in Molag Bal's stronghold, and is his personal collection. The shelves in Molag Bal's book room span entire cliffs, and run deep into a chasm. Unsurprisingly, some of the stuff on his shelves is pretty disturbing.
- Molag Bal is fascinated by the metamagical technology of Soul Gems, and often has a mystical research project or two in the works to develop new and more efficient methods of stealing and imprisoning the souls of mortals.
- There are a lot of graveyards in Molag Bal's plane of Oblivion for no other reason than because he likes them.
- It is rumored among the kyn who serve him that his second-favorite type of weapon (after the mace) is the axe, as it is the tool of the headsman. Nobody is brave enough to ask him about it, though.
- He occasionally holds elaborate ceremonies, an example of which was his "first Daedric Titan unveiling and Soul Shriven impalement celebration". His daughter has also hosted dinner parties, featuring dishes like roasted Yaghra.
- One of Mannimarco's old cohorts, Vastarie, stole the first black soul gems used by the King of Worms from Coldharbour. Mannimarco believed that the secret to "trapping souls as one might capture lesser Daedra" was being held by Molag Bal, so with all her youthful courage, Vastarie braved the ashen wastes and carried out the heist as her fellow necromancers held open a portal for her. Mannimarco would eventually come to "serve" Molag Bal, and caused the Soulburst for him. Mannimarco used his knowledge of soul gems to hatch a plot against the Prince, which failed during the Planemeld.
- Molag Bal purportedly has terrible hygiene.
- Molag Bal's dialogue in ESO
- Meridia's dialogue in ESO
- Events of ESO
- The House of Troubles
- Amir's dialogue in Oblivion
- Notes on the Mortuum Vivicus
- Yushi's dialogue in Oblivion
- Closing the Octal Cage
- Afneer Cold-Moon's dialogue in ESO
- On the Nature of Coldharbour — Phrastus of Elinhir
- Ritual of Resonance
- Bardic Performances in ESO
- Rite of the Scion
- The Adversarial Spirits — Amun-dro, the Silent Priest
- 2920, Rain's Hand — Carlovac Townway
- Appearance of The Wailing Maw, the Castle of the Worm, the Foundry of Woe and several other locations where soul gems are piled high in ESO
- On the Xivkyn — Pelagius Habor, Council Daedrologist-in-Residence Cite error: Invalid
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- Appearance of Haj Uxith, The Moonless Walk and the Reaver Citadel in ESO
- The Improved Emperor's Guide to Tamriel: Dreams of Cyrodiil — Flaccus Terentius, 2E 581
- Haj Uxith's appearance in Coldharbour and Faraniel's dialogue during ESO
- Events of ESO
- The Slave Pits of Coldharbour
- Valasha's Journal — Valasha
- Unhallowed Legions — Phrastus of Elinhir
- Molag Bal's dialogue during The Prismatic Core
- King Laloriaran Dynar's dialogue during Light from the Darkness in ESO
- Ozzozachar's appearance in ESO
- Events of Morrowind
- History of Senchal: An Overview — Sulema, Initiate Scholar of the Pa'alatiin
- High Ordinator Danys' dialogue during ESO
- Events of ESO
- Lyranth the Foolkiller Answers Your Questions — Lyranth the Foolkiller
- Daedra Dossier: The Titans — Denogorath the Dread Archivist
- 36 Lessons of Vivec, Sermon 14 — Vivec
- The Whithering of Delodiil — Unknown
- Blue Torchbug pet description in ESO
- Opusculus Lamae Bal ta Mezzamortie — Mabei Aywenil, Scribe
- Lord Harkon's dialogue in Dawnguard
- Vanus Galerion's dialogue in ESO
- Virgar the Red's dialogue in ESO
- The Duchess of Anguish's appearance in ESO; the events at the Cliffs of Failure
- Molag Bal's dialogue during ESO
- Vanus Galerion's dialogue during The Citadel Must Fall in ESO
- Kyne's Challenge: A Hunter's Companion; Ogrim and Scamp, Winged Twilight
- Loading screen text for the Lightless Cell in ESO
- The Lightless Oubliette
- Crafting Motif 63: Dremora — Lyranth the Foolkiller
- Crafting Motif 17: Xivkyn — Denogorath, Dread Archivist and Promulgator of Mandatory Doctrine
- Yggmanei's appearance in ESO
- Molag Bal's dialogue during world events in ESO
- Lord Warden Dusk's dialogue during ESO
- The fact that Lyranth is still breathing after the events of ESO
- Appearance of the Soul-Shriven and Mind-Shriven in ESO
- Appearance of the vampire guards in The Orchard and the working vampires in The Black Forge in ESO
- Daedra Dossier: Cold-Flame Atronach — Denogorath the Dread Archivist
- Prison of Xykenaz loading screen text in ESO
- Protocols of the Court of Contempt — Judge Xiven
- Loading screen text for the Library of Dusk in ESO
- Kireth Vanos' dialogue in ESO
- Loading Screen text for the Wailing Maw in ESO
- Loading Screen text for Mal Sorra's Tomb in ESO
- Crafting Motif 63: Dremora — Lyranth the Foolkiller
- Cadwell's dialogue in ESO
- Cadwell's dialogue in ESO
- The Legend of Vastarie — Afwa, a Student and Friend
- Events of ESO
- Events of ESO
- Irrai's dialogue in ESO