Gods of the Empire

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The Gods of the Empire comprise the variety of deities that the people of the Empire worship.[1a]

Across the Empire, people worship the many and varied gods in different ways - some of the gods are known and venerated throughout the provinces and have grand temples that stand testament to their power and prestige, whilst others are quiet, almost forgotten or tied to a specific location.[1a]

The Old Gods

Before the Empire was founded, the tribes that roamed the lands worshipped a number of deities and in time five of them rose to prominence and power each representing primal forces and concepts that early humans wished to placate or gain favour with. These are the Old Gods, who some in the Empire still consider the true deities of their homeland.[1a]

  • Manann (the sea): There are also sub cults which woship aspects of the god: Manalt, lord of the bounty of the Sea and Manhavok which is only found deep inland in Stirland and awaits the time when the sea cleanses the land. [2a]
  • Morr (death) [1a]
  • Rhya (fertility): Like her husband, she has many names under which she is worshipped including Haleth and Lupos the Wolf, lord of predators. [2a]
  • Taal (nature): There are a wide variety of sub cults that worship him under many names including Karnos, lord of the Beasts. [2a]
  • Ulric (war): He is also known and worshipped as Urash, hunter of bears, Ulric Blood-hand, patron of Beserkers and the Snow King. [1a]

The Classical Gods

From the southern lands of Estalia, Tilea came the worship of these gods who remain popular with townsfolk, nobles and those who consider themselves sopshitcated.[1a]

The most well known Classical gods are:

  • Myrmidia (strategy): There are several sub cults which worship a specific aspect of the goddess such as the Fury her righteous anger. [2a]
  • Ranald (trickery): His aspect cults include that of Ranald the Dealer, patron of ruthless and sharp traders, the Night Prowler patron of cat burglers and similar thieves and the Lord of Luck, patron of Gamblers.[2a]
  • Shallya (mercy): She has several sub cults including that of Shallya the Purifier whose mercy even extends to mutants. Kislevites in the Empire worship her as Salyak, giver of Charity. [2a]
  • Verena (wisdom): She has many sub cults including a male aspect Renbaerth, the Perfect Lawyer and Scripsisti, patron of calligraphers. [2a]

There is also Khaine, the god of Murder whose worship is outlawed in most places.[1]

Patron God of the Empire, Sigmar

Standing above all others in power, the cult of the man-god Sigmar has risen to dominate the Empire since his ascension to godhood by Ulric. [1]

Provincial Gods

Across the many provinces of the Empire there are a myriad of minor deities and godlings, the patrons of towns, forests, rivers, lakes, crafts and much more. These powers may only have a small following and little temporal power but a few have spread across the lands and gained prominence such as Handrich, god of trade who many merchants have embraced. [1]

Each Province has its own favourite deities:

The Gods of other Races

Humanity may make up the majority of the population of the Empire but there are other races that dwell within it and they worship their own gods - the Dwarfs revere their Ancestor Gods and the Elves their sprawling Elf Pantheon [1a]

The Grand Conclave

Although the varied people of the Empire may worship hundreds of gods in total, there are ten that are considered pre-eminent or primary gods of the Empire as designated by Magnus the Pious who sought to rebuild after the Great War Against Chaos. He had realised and recognised that strife between the various cults and sects was often responsible for civil wars and so created the Grand Conclave - a meeting of the major cults of the Empire. The Emperor would act as chairman and together the cult leaders could discuss any issues between them and hopefully resolve them. Although extremely controversial at first, it is now held every five years with festivals and celebrations. [1a]

The acknowledged Primary gods are: Manann, Morr, Myrmidia, Ranald, Rhya, Shallya, Sigmar, Taal, Verena and Ulric [1a]

The Cult of Handrich continues to seek a place at the table but has so far been refused.[1a]

The Proscribed

Worshippers of the dark Gods of Chaos can be found throughout the Empire, the lost and damned, the slaves to darkness gather in cults in village, wilderness, city and town alike, gathering power and influence whilst preparing the way for their masters. [1a]

Sources