Lore:Ancestor Moth

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An Ancestor Moth
"For long the Cyro-Nordics had exported ancestor-silks to other regions, simple yet exotic shawls woven from the silks of an indigenous gypsy moth and inscribed with the requisite genealogy of its buyer. Under the Cult, however, ancestor and moth became synonymous: the singing and hymnal spirits of one's forebears are caught in a special silk-gathering ritual, the resource of which is used to create any manner of vestment or costume."Imperial Geographic Society, "Pocket Guide to the Empire, 1st Edition/Cyrodiil"

The Ancestor Moth is a rare indigenous gypsy-moth of Cyrodiil,[1] and the Ancestor Glades of Tamriel,[2] said to be kept alive by the loving spirits of the dearly-deceased, and grant wisdom and knowledge to those they come upon.[3] The Ancestor Moth is sacred to the Imperials of Cyrodiil, specifically, the Cyro-Nords of the Nibenay. The Nibenese are known to use the ancestor silk of the gypsy-moth to craft exotic cloth, and export to others across the provinces. The singing and hymnal vocals of the ancestors are collected into a special silk-gathering ceremony, which is the ancestor silk. In the Nibenay, this silk harvest is a sacred tradition that dates back to their early history. But to the Cult of the Ancestor Moth, they are one of the same. The cult harvest the silk and undergo a magical ritual to enchant the fabric.[1]

Ancestor moths are also used by Moth Priests in the Ritual of the Ancestor Moth in order to read an Elder Scroll. The moths maintain a connection to the ancient magic that allows the Moth Priest to decipher them. Moths emanate a soft harmonious trilling that when amplified taps into a form of primal augur. This allows the moths themselves to become a conduit for deciphering the scrolls. By having the moths close to the Moth Priest, they can utilize the conduit and share the moth's augury.[2]


The Ancestor Moth is attracted to the Canticle Tree, specifically the crushed grain of the canticle bark. The cult would also recite mantras, to maintain a spiritual connection and skin contact with the Ancestor Moth. They endure such a process to keep a cosmic balance. If the monk is interrupted, the Ancestor Moth would burst in the air, and only come back when the monk continues their mantras.[1] As mentioned before, the Ancestor Moth produces the ancestor silk, which is crimson-red and is prime material for making the strongest type of Light Armor.[4] The Moth's wing are known to contain alchemic properties, such as fortify Conjuration, but also damaging stamina. The Moth chrysalis is green and is known to faintly smell like fresh grass, and clean water. They are considered very valuable, known to have been in circulation during the Interregnum in 2E 582.[5]



  1. ^ a b c Pocket Guide to the Empire, 1st Edition: CyrodiilImperial Geographical Society, 2E 864
  2. ^ a b Dexion Evicus' dialogue in Skyrim: Dawnguard
  3. ^ Ancestor Moth Swarm pet in ESO
  4. ^ Ancestor Silk node in ESO
  5. ^ Ancestor Moth Pupa contraband in ESO