|This article is about the Black Templars Battle Barge; for the Novella by Guy Haley, see The Eternal Crusader|
The Eternal Crusader is a Gloriana Class Battleship[3a] and the largest ship of the Black Templars fleet. Serving as the Chapter's spiritual and operational center, it is home to the High Marshal himself. The Eternal Crusader holds most of the Chapter's relics, chapels, and reliquaries and has been refitted many times over its ten thousand years of service. The ship has extra docking facilities for Escorts, additional launch bays for shuttles and Thunderhawks, and accommodation for twice as many Space Marines as a normal battle barge.
The Eternal Crusader dates back to the Great Crusade where it served in the Imperial Fists Fleet, and was said to be one of Rogal Dorn's favourite ships. Dorn granted the vessel to Sigismund and his Black Templars after the Second Founding as the linchpin of their efforts to extend the Imperium's reach.
The Black Legion boarded the Eternal Crusader in the First Battle of Cadia and came close to capturing the vessel.[3b] After Ezekyle Abaddon was wounded by Sigismund and Thagus Daravek's fleet arrived behind the Black Legion, they were forced to flee and abandon the badly damaged Eternal Crusader, which retreated with the remainder of the Black Templars' fleet.[3c]
During the War of the Beast, the Eternal Crusader was undergoing refit at the shipyards at Cypra Mundi, and would not be combat ready for another twenty years. The Black Templars flag was transferred to the Abhorrence.
- 1: Codex: Black Templars (4th Edition), pg. 8
- 2: Throneworld (Novel), Chapter One
- 3: Black Legion (Novel)