Clan Cave-Bear
Clan Cave-Bear Coat-of-Arms
Clan Cave-Bear's official coat-of-arms


Nord (mainly)




The Reach


Sturkas Cave-Bear

Key Members

Ungeld of the Reach, Sturkas, Bjerna, Morven of the Reach, Armstark, Kettil, Gylfing, Farvild


Clan Ghost-Wolf


Ursa the Bear-Queen

Foundation year

Late Merethic Era

Ancestral weapon

Wolf's Bane

Steady as a Mountain. Unforgiving as a Storm.
— Their words

Clan Cave-Bear is a clan of high status seated in the Ursineburg in Markarth. It was founded somewhere during the Late Merethic Era by Ursa the Bear-Queen.

Their coat-of-arms depicts a rusted, steel-grey bear's head in profile edged with black on a dark brown background.

The clan's current Patriarch is Armstark Cave-Bear.


Early history

Clan Cave-Bear was founded by a member of Ysgramor's five hundred companions by the name of Ursa. She was a ferocious fighter and a battle-mage. After the events of the Return she was given the frozen cave system of northern Skyrim as her territory. But she wasn't content with this meagre reward for her services. Reluctantly she accepted and withdrew there along with those warriors that had sworn fealty to her. There she meditated and reflected upon ancient knowledge about magic, perfecting it until she was ready. During the last years of the Late Merethic Era, she waged war against the other Nords, claiming northern Skyrim as her own. Since then the uprising has become known as "The Ursine Rebellion". With her knowledge about magic she enchanted her loyal warriors into bears so that their enemies would tremble in fear before their might. This earned her the title of Ursa the Bear-Queen.

The First Clan War

Some historians speculate that it was the Ursine Rebellion that sparked the First Clan War, but there are no surviving sources from the period supporting this theory. All that is known about Clan Cave-Bear at this point was that their clanmembers had wandered south-west and constructed the keep the Ursineburg sometime after the uprising, built on top of a cave in what would later become the city of Markarth. The keep suffered a devastating siege by the other clans a few years later and Ursa the Bear-Queen was killed at the top of her pride, thus ending the Late Merethic Era and major reasons for why the First Clan War started died out during the beginning of the Second Era.

The Second Clan War

The clan remained mostly inactive during the Second Clan War in order to recover their strength from the failed Ursine Rebellion.

The Third Clan War

Despite past faults, Clan Cave-Bear remained loyal to Tiber Septim's cause, even after his death, and his dreams of a united Tamriel. And so they fought with several other clans, especially those of Elvenkind, in order to maintain the balance and to keep the nations of Tamriel under the rule of the Empire.

The Fourth Clan War

Clan Cave-Bear was severely weakened during the Oblivion Crisis, having fought off entire hordes of Daedra besieging the Ursineburg. They remained inactive for the first half of the war, but participated later on by declaring an uneasy truce with their sword enemy Clan Ghost-Wolf and exported weapons to their temporary allies and the other clans loyal to the Empire's cause, to be used against the rebel clans.

Recent history

With the signing of the White-Gold concordat, the clan lost all faith in the Imperial cause and rejected any former alliances with those supporting the Empire's cause. Since the very origin of the clan the Cave-Bears had never seen eye to eye with any clan of Elvenkind. And therefore the clanmembers saw it fit that they would repel against the Aldmeri Dominion with every warrior they had in order to keep Skyrim independent from Elven rule and an Imperial constitution.

4E 192 was a dark year for the clan. Sturkas Cave-Bear had grown weary of all the hostilities between Clan Ghost-Wolf and his kin and therefore invited Patriarch Bitvarg the Elder with his family to call for a truce. In reality it was a setup. On the plains of the Whiterun Tundra the majority of Clan Ghost-Wolf's family members were brutally massacred by bribed bandit hordes hiding in the mountains. Thus sparking the event known as "the Wolf Trap". Sturkas Cave-Bear along with his four sons have since gone into hiding. When they re-emerged from hiding, Sturkas challenged Valkyrie Ghost-Wolf to a duel in which he was later killed and succeeded by his eldest son Armstark.


Men come in firsthand within the clan, meaning that the women are of less priority. Even if the firstborn child of the former Patriarch or Matriarch is a daughter, the title of Heir will always go to the firstborn son. However if no sons or close male relatives are to be found, then the title will pass to the female next in line.

This is a bit ironic, since the very founder of the clan was a female.

The Cave Dwellers

The Cave Dwellers is the name of Clan Cave-Bear's code book. It traces its history all the way back to the days when the founders of the clan still lived in the caves along the frozen coasts of Skyrim. Many of the illustrations found within the tome's pages are the exact copies of those still found among the ancient cave walls of the Cave-Bears former kingdom. The pictures depicts how the members of the clan could turn into savage beasts even though they lacked the blood of the Werebear.

Unique Ranks

The Battle Bears

The Battle Bears is the highest achievable rank of warriors within the clan. Few are worthy to carry such titles. What defines a Battle Bear is their unmatched ferocity and sheer strength. It takes years of training to become a Battle Bear and the position is only offered to males.

The Ursines

The Ursines are warriors of either gender. They dress themselves in bear pelts in order to make themselves look fearsome. They are the standard footsoldier unit for the clan. Those who train to become an Ursine must decide to do so in an early age, due to the time it takes to build up the muscles for the physical activity. Their primary weapons are axes.

The Cave Dwellers

The Cave Dwellers is a secretive order of clanmembers who have taken a sacred wov never to see the sun again. At an early age they are taken down the the deepest caves of the Ursineburg where they spend their days and nights living in total darkness, eventually going blind and has to rely solemnly on their other senses in order to survive. Though losing their sight the Cave Dwellers have gained focus to hone their magical abilites, allowing them to see into the future and foretell the coming of the Cave-Bears. They are generally considered to be the shamans and wise men and women. Only women however are allowed to become Cave Dweller Veterans.

The Unblooded

The Unblooded are initiates who has yet to chose which of three warriors paths they want to focus on. Children, whether adopted or born into the clan, are usually called Unblooded.

The Cubs

Those who do not want to endulge themselves in the art of warfare are called Cubs within Clan Cave-Bear. The rank generally consists of everything from servants and farmhands to stableboys and squires.

Cadet Branches

The Cadet Branches of Clan Cave-Bear are:

  • Clan Manslaughter
  • Clan Berserk
  • Clan Bearsbane

Known Clanmembers

Traits and Reputation

Family members tend to be big-boned, swarthy with black or dark brown hair and brown eyes.

The clan has been acknowledged as being one of the more dubious of the clans in terms of morals and trust. They have a tendency to help out people in returns for favours at a later occasion. Family members have a reputation for losing their temper quickly as well as their minds.

Quotes about the Clan

Those lycanthrope-hating bigots will find their next cave to be six feet under the ground when I am through with them.


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