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Typhus, Herald of Nurgle[1]

"I shall reap a terrible bounty from the death that I sow in your name. Father Nurgle..."[9b]

Typhus the Traveler, Herald of Nurgle, is a Chaos Space Marine of the Death Guard legion.


This page contains spoilers for: The Flight of the Eisenstein (Novel)
Calas Typhon before the Horus Heresy
First Captain Calas Typhon during the Horus Heresy.[6]
Post-Heresy Typhus kills Tau

Typhus was born Calas Typhon on the Death Guard's eventual homeworld of Barbarus. Typhon possessed the blood of the warlords that had ruled the planet before being defeated by Mortarion, the Death Guard's Primarch[3]. As a child upon the toxic planet of Barbarus, Calas Typhon was troubled by nightly phenomena over which he believed he had no control. Objects would shudder and smash around him whenever he was frightened or angered, and plants would wither and die under his gaze. These phantom powers troubled him greatly, but he resolved to turn them to his advantage. By the time Typhon reached maturity, he had learned to master the psychic energies that resonated within him each night; a feat of will that impressed his elders mightily. With this act, Typhon became stronger in his resolve to succeed than any of his peers. When the Emperor reclaimed his lost son Mortarion from the poisonous mists of Barbarus, and reunited him with the the superhuman warriors born from his gene-seed, Typhon was amongst those chosen to join their ranks. As he joined the legion, his psychic potential was suppressed through training due to the anti-psyker sentiment of his Primarch. Nonetheless through his rugged talent, Typhus was eventually able to rise to the prestigious position of First Captain.[12]

According to Typhon himself, he was secretly converted to worship of the Gods of Chaos by his friend Erebus, First Chaplain of the Word Bearers. In fact, Typhon's allegiance to Chaos predated that of his own Primarch, or of Horus himself[2a]. With the help of his new gods, Typhon became First Captain of the Death Guard and commander of the battleship Terminus Est[1]. Typhus was not particularly loyal to Mortarion, and always wished to travel the Galaxy and forge his own destiny in the name of the Ruinous Powers.[1]

When Mortarion joined Horus in his rebellion, Typhon helped orchestrate the massacre of loyalist Space Marines on Isstvan III, when Horus's fleet virus-bombed the surface and killed nearly every living thing aboveground[2b]. Because Battle-Captain Nathaniel Garro was unable to join his loyalist comrades on the surface, Typhon detailed him to the frigate Eisenstein, along with Commander Ignatius Grulgor, privately ordering Grulgor to deal with Garro and his men when necessary[2c]. Typhon was furious when the Eisenstein broke from orbit without joining the virus-bombing. Realizing that Grulgor had failed, he commanded the Terminus Est in pursuit of the frigate, and managed to severely damage the vessel, but was unable to stop it from escaping into the warp[2d]. Later during the Heresy, Typhon led half of the Death Guard in a splinter fleet while Mortarion himself took command of the other. During his campaign of misery and misdirection against the Dark Angels, Typhon's fleet attempted to acquire the Tuchulcha engine in fulfillment of Nurgle's designs but was foiled by Lion El'Jonson during the Battle of Perditus.[15] Hounded by a Dark Angels retribution force under the command of Corswain, Typhon's fleet later reappeared at the Zaramund System. There, the Death Guard forces were welcomed by Luther and his Fallen Angels.[16]

When the Death Guard's fleet embarked for Terra Typhon killed the Navigators, whom he alleged remained loyal to the Emperor, and assured his Primarch that he could lead the fleet to Terra without their help. Instead, he led them into a trap - becalming the Death Guard fleet in the warp, adrift, helpless and at the mercy of Chaos[3]. Then came the Destroyer Plague and the Death Guard were struck down, but Typhon received his reward from "Grandfather Nurgle" and he absorbed the full power of the plague. His body became home to the flies of Nurgle, his armour a hive of pestilence. He then became Typhus, Herald of Nurgle and the Host of the Destroyer Hive[1].

Recent History

Since the Heresy, Typhus has continued to spread the glory of Nurgle across the galaxy. Leading a contingent of Death Guard of the Plague Fleet from the Terminus Est, Typhus is known to have laid waste to many worlds and waged many battles in Nurgle's name. He has even traveled to the Garden of Nurgle inside the Warp itself, where he has battled Khornate Daemons.[12] Typhus has also laid waste to the world of Ligeta with a noise-plague where the infected became forced to eternally sing a hymn to the Lord of Decay.[7] In 757.M40, he killed 23 billion people on Hydra Minoris with the Zombie Plague.[9a] In the 13th Black Crusade, Typhus' Plague Fleet was the first Chaos force encountered by the Imperium. In the Crusade, his forces went on to ravage the Agripinaa Sector.[8] He also oversaw the Infestation and desecration of a holy planet Annunciation by himself alone.[11]

In M41 Typhus once again attempted to unite the Tuchulcha Engine with its brother devices, this time in cooperation with the Fallen Angel Astelan. The two planned to gather the original Fallen with Typhus' own forces to create a new legion known as the "Death Angels". However, they were foiled by the Dark Angels led by Azrael and surprisingly, Cypher.[14]

Typhus later appeared as part of Mortarion's armada during the Death Guard invasion of Ultramar. Typhus led a splinter fleet which terrorized the outer regions of Ultramar. During the invasion of Ultramar, Typhus no longer maintained even slight reverence or respect for his Primarch. The Herald of Nurgle scolded Mortarion and stated that he was closer to the vision of Nurgle. Typhus expressed no desire to work under Mortarion directly, but was willing to take part in the Ultramar campaign simply to further Nurgle's design.[17]

Weapons and Abilities

Typhus is a formidable psyker favored by Nurgle, able to call forth both Nurgle's Rot and the Wind of Chaos psychic powers. In addition to his Manreaper Daemon weapon, his body is host to the Destroyer Hive; a horrific plague that manifests as a swarm of insects that continuously pour from the cracks and vents in his Terminator armour.[1]

Canon Conflicts

In the original background, Typhon/Typhus was a Librarian of the Death Guard possessing the rank of "Captain-Epistolary". However, the Horus Heresy Series ret-cons his position to that of First Captain and, accordingly, he appears not to have any psychic abilities.[4] The novella The Lion by Gav Thorpe rectifies this, stating that Typhon/Typhus is a minor psyker and prior to Mortarion's joining with the Dusk Raiders he actively trained his powers. As Mortarion did not like or trust psykers Typhon/Typhus stopped training and using his powers and focused on his duties as First Captain. He resumed using them in secret after the Death Guard's declaration for Horus.[5]

Additionally, Typhon/Typhus was originally said to have been born on Barbarus[3], but The Lion mentions that he had practiced as a Librarian in the Dusk Raiders Legion, before Mortarion assumed control and renamed it the Death Guard.[5] This implies that he may have been born elsewhere, perhaps on Terra. However, the short story Daemonology mentions that Mortarion spent an unspecified length of time on Terra between being rediscovered by the Emperor and assuming command.[13] It is possible that Typhon/Typhus was recruited from Barbarus and inducted into the Legion's Librarius during this period, although this would require Mortarion to have been on Terra for several years (considering the amount of time required to create a Space Marine).


Calas Typhon, First Captain of the Death Guard Legion.
Typhus miniature[10]
Typhus miniature (8th Edition)