Soul Trap is a spell effect of the Mysticism school. It has to be cast on a creature before it dies in combat and requires an available Soul Gem large enough to contain the creature's soul. A Mysticism skill of 25 or greater is required to use this spell. The spell is obtained from vendors who sell spells (e.g. from Selena Orania in the Bruma Mages Guild).

  • Note that the Soul Trap spell effect will work even on creatures that would not logically be expected to have a soul (such as a Summoned Zombie, or a Deer; see the table 'Soul gem sizes' for a list of creature types)--this means this spell is more accurately called 'Life-Essense Capture' (and the gems 'Life-Essence Gems').


For those of you who do not have the requisite skill level to use the soul trap spell worry not, as following is one explanation on how to raise your Mysticism level to 'apprentice' quickly, thereby allowing you to utilise the Soul Trap spell.

  • Firstly, go and purchase the 'Minor Detect Life' spell from Edgar's Discount Spells in the Imperial City Market District.
  • Secondly, ensure you possess plenty of 'Potions of Sorcery' (weak or strong), in order to replenish your magicka (for those of you whose magicka replenishes automatically, keep hold of your coin). Or you can cast all of your magicka out and just wait 1 hour as it replenishes by itself.
  • Finally, equip the 'Minor Detect Life' spell from your inventory and start casting it like it was running out of fashion.

After approx. 5 minutes of casting this spell and replenishing your magicka then repeating, a message informing you of your rise to apprentice of Mysticism should appear right before your eyes and, hey presto! you are now able to cast the 'Soul Trap' spell (very useful for creating Black Soul Gems...etc).

How to Use the 'Soul Trap' Spell Edit

To capture a soul, you must have at least one empty soul gem (of the appropriate level) in your inventory. Cast the 'Soul Trap' spell on the target, and slay it before the duration of the spell runs out. If done correctly, the soul will be trapped in the first appropriate soul gem available in your inventory.

When you have succesfully killed a creature or NPC before the spell has expired, you will receive a message on the screen:

  • If you have the appropriate Soul Gem the message will be "You have successfully captured a soul!"
  • If you do not have an empty gem, or you do not have a gem of a high enough level, the message will inform you of that fact, and the spell has failed.

If the spell expires before the creature dies, or fails in some other way, you will receive no message.

Be warned that if you do not have a Soul Gem of the appropriate level (there is no small enough stone available) a larger stone will be used instead, effectively wasting the larger gem, as the majority of soul gems are not reusable. (The exceptions that are reusable are discussed on the Soul Gem page.)

For more information on how to obtain and utilize captured souls, see the 'Soul Gem' article.

Spell List Edit

Name Effect Magnitude Duration Range Area Mastery
Soul Trap Captures a creature's dying soul. 0 20 Touch 0 Apprentice
Greater Soul Trap Captures a creature's dying soul. 0 30 Self 0 Journeyman
Superior Soul Trap Captures the souls of all adjacent creatures. 0 120 Self 10 Expert
Legendary Soul Trap Captures the souls of all nearby creatures. 0 60 Self 20 Master

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