|Space Marines Portal|
The Space Wolves (or Vlka Fenryka, Wolves of Fenris in Fenrisian) were Legion VI of the twenty Space Marine Legions. Their primarch is Leman Russ. After the Horus Heresy and the resultant reforms, the legion was divided into two chapters: the new Space Wolves chapter retained the name of their parent Legion, while the second chapter took on the name of the Wolf Brothers. The latter however suffered from mutation and was disbanded. It is currently unknown if there are any other descendant chapters of the Space Wolves at all.
The Space Wolves are notorious throughout the rest of the Imperium for their ferocity in battle and their defiance of authority, including the dictates of the Codex Astartes that govern the organization and combat doctrines of other Space Marine chapters.
|Marine||Basic Data||Chapter Symbol|
Fenris is a planet of fire and ice, it orbits its sun once every two Terran years. During the summer months volcanoes erupt, burning great areas with lava flows and churning the seas, spreading great floods and tidal waves. As the planet enters its long winter, the temperature drops so far that most of it actually ices over, giving the planet the appearance of a snowball from orbit[Needs Citation].
Apart from a single area of the planet that is permanently land-locked (called Asaheim by the natives), Fenris is a world of shifting geography. Numerous asteroid strikes, mutable coastlines and even swiftly risen or sunk island masses have resulted in the population becoming one of largely nomadic barbarian tribes. The tribes constantly seek secure territory, and as a result skirmishes and feuds over land between rival tribes are common. The people are hardened to the changes in temperature and extremes, and so is the fauna[Needs Citation].
It is located relatively close to the Eye of Terror, yet indigenous life remains pure and untainted[Needs Citation].
Primarch Leman Russ grew up on the distant planet of Fenris, a snow-covered world inhabited by primitive, warlike tribes of humans. He was raised by a pack of the massive Fenrisian Wolves that prowl the snowy lands[Needs Citation].
He was discovered by a man named Thengir, King of the Russ, who had organised a party of hunters to clear the wolf pack from his lands. As most of the wolves were slaughtered the young man was captured and brought to Thengir who took him into his care, under the name of Leman Russ.[Needs Citation]
The Primarch learned the ways of man quickly, and many legends sprung up about him. Upon his adopted father's death, the leadership of the Russ passed to Leman. Leman became a mighty leader, winning many victories, often fighting alongside packs of Fenrisian Wolves, led by two of his Wolf-brothers who escaped Thengir's hunters[Needs Citation].
The Emperor travelled to Fenris having heard word of the exploits of Leman Russ realising that they could only be the work of a Primarch. At first Leman Russ refused to pay him homage, going as far as challenging him[Needs Citation].
The challenges consisted of three different contests, one being eating, the other drinking, and the third being a fist-fighting one. Russ managed to beat the Emperor at both eating and drinking, but the third challenge was more to the Emperor's liking. Having at first seemed like a disappointment, a drunkard and a boaster, the Primarch suddenly launched a furious attack. This very challenge proved to the Emperor that this was indeed one of his sons, Russ fighting with outstanding speed and power. After having the disappointment lifted from his spirit by his son's ferocity, the Emperor stopped holding back and quickly found an opening in Leman Russ' defences. The Emperor raised his power fist, knocking the Primarch out with a single blow that would have killed a lesser man. Leman Russ awoke later and blamed his loss on the alcohol, but in the end admitted defeat and swore loyalty to the Emperor.[Needs Citation]
The Lion and the Wolf
During a pacification war, the Dark Angels aided the Space Wolves, and the leader of this particular planet insulted Leman Russ's honour, and so he wanted to defeat the leader personally for the insult. The Dark Angels and Space Wolves, both led by their respective Primarchs, assaulted the tower where the leader was. Leman Russ burst into the throne room just in time to see Lion El'Jonson beheading the leader. Angry that the honour was not his, Leman Russ marched up to the Lion and punched him in the jaw. This led to a battle that lasted a week or more, until finally Russ saw how immature their squabble was and started laughing. Lion El'Jonson took this as Russ mocking him and punched Leman Russ into unconsciousness before leaving the planet with his legion. This led to a bitter feud between the Legions (and subsequent Chapters), which lasts to this day - although recent events may finally have led to an end to the rivalry, though it is still customary for selected champions from both sides to engage in a (usually) non-lethal duel.
Just prior to the Horus Heresy, the Space Wolves came into conflict with their brother Space Marines once again. The Primarch of the Thousand Sons Space Marines, Magnus, had ignored the Emperor's command to not dabble in sorcery. The Space Wolves were then ordered by the Emperor to bring Magnus before the him to answer for this. Russ, however, was convinced by Horus to launch an attack on the Thousand Sons rather than attempt to negotiate. The surprise assault upon the Sons' homeworld of Prospero was furious, and rather successful; however, many of the Sons, including Magnus himself, escaped into the wild region of space known as the Eye of Terror. A blood feud still exists between Wolves and the survivors of the Thousand Sons, who are now dedicated to the Chaos God Tzeentch.[Needs Citation]
During the Horus Heresy, the Space Wolves were far from Terra, alongside the Dark Angels, and were unable to assist their loyalist brethren in the fighting there. Knowing of the imminent arrival of the two Legions, which would tip the balance in favour of the loyalists, Horus allowed the Emperor to personally attack him in a gamble to swiftly end the war. The two Legions arrived just after the battle concluded, with Horus dead and the Emperor mortally wounded.[Needs Citation]
Leman Russ was devastated by his inability to save the Emperor. After the war was fully completed, and all resistance was crushed, Russ held a great feast, at which he declared he would be leaving, and would return for the 'final battle'.[Needs Citation] He then vanished, and is said to have gone into the Eye of Terror to continue hunting down the traitorous Marines who fought against the Emperor during the Horus Heresy.
Any evidence for either theory has yet to be presented and there is a large possibility that both are mere fables. The true whereabouts of the Primarch remains a mystery. Apparently Magnus The Red knows, but the Daemon Primarch and his Thousand Sons are not sharing that information with any outside their traitorous ranks.[12a]
- M32 - Battle of the Fang
- M36 - The Skarath Crusade - The Space Wolves are the first to use the Predator Annihilator against Chaos forces.[8a]
- 444.M41 - First War for Armageddon - Logan Grimnar led 300 Space Wolves alongside 100 Grey Knights against Angron and a diabolic horde of Khorne.
- 445.M41 - The Months of Shame - In the aftermath of the Armageddon conflict the Space Wolves move to protect Imperial Guard and civilians from Armageddon from Inquisitorial purges, leading to at first a "Cold War" and eventually a direct clash between the two powers. At the conflicts peak, Fenris itself is besieged.
- 777.M41 - The Achilus Crusade
- 837.M41 - Honour's End- Flesh Tearers and Space Wolves cross swords.[10d]
- 886.M41 - The Ecclesiarchy arrives at Fenris to investigate a claim of their worship of pagan gods. The Space Wolves orbital defenses fire upon the Ecclesiarchy vessel, chasing it away. Almost a year later, an Ecclesiarchy fleet and three Orders of the Adepta Sororitas attempt to land on Fenris by force. A three-week war erupts before the Ecclesiarchy decides to withdraw.[10i]
- 894.M41 - The Betalis Campaign. The Space Wolves battle alongside Cadian Imperial Guard to push the Eldar off the Mining World of Betalis III.
- 897.M41 - The Space Wolves engage Hive Fleet Colossus on the world of Thressiax.[10i]
- 926.M41 - The Third Purging of Lastrati. Five Companies of Space Wolves are deployed to battle the Red Corsairs in the Lastrati System, but are eventually forced to withdraw.
- 966.M41 - The Battle of Kvariam Alpha. The Space Wolves engage the Tau Empire in an underwater battle on the Ocean World of Kvariam Alpha.[10i]
- 999.M41 - Third War for Armageddon - The Space Wolves fielded 5 Great Companies in the defence of Armageddon.
- 999.M41 - The Ormantep Raid. Many suspect the 13th Great Company to be behind the miraculous and mysterious defeat of Black Legion forces assailing the Mining World of Ormantep
- 999.M41 - Thirteenth Black Crusade - The Space Wolves committed 12 Great Companies against this Black Crusade.
- ???.M41 - The Crusade of Fire
- Deployed Land Raider Helios against Orks on Centius Prime.
- Saw action against the forces of the Draxian Incursion on Medes 841.
- Saw action against Chaos at Hesperida. Forces included elements of Ragnar Blackmane's Great Company.
- Ragnar Blackmane's Great Company was despatched to aid the Imperial Guard forces fighting Chaos at Corinthus V.
- Fielded Vindicator's during the Magdelon Confrontation.
- Fielded all but one company to Garm to recover the Spear of Russ. After securing the temple, they tried to recover the Spear of Russ, but it was lost to the warp in order to close a portal being formed by marines of the Thousand Sons.
The gene-seed of the Space Wolves gifts the chapter's members with enhanced, animalistic abilities, including hyper-acute senses of hearing and smell, and a ferocity in battle that is almost unrivaled by any other Space Marines'[10f].
The gene-seed also induces physical changes in the Wolves more extreme than those of other genetically-modified humans, such as elongated canines, shaggy hair that becomes grey, then pure white as the Wolf ages, and sometimes pale yellow eyes[10f][10g].
The primary flaw in the Wolves gene-seed is the Curse of the Wulfen, which risks transforming the Marine into a feral beast that cannot be controlled. This risk presents itself when Aspirants are first implanted with the gene-seed before their Test of Morkai, but even those who manage to control the instability are never entirely free of it[10f].
Though undeniably loyal to the Emperor, the Space Wolves are known for their fiercely anti-authoritarian behaviour. They strongly resist the central command structure of the Imperium, and refuse to follow the dictates of the Codex Astartes, which lays the structure and tactics to be used by all Space Marines. They hold a particular disdain for the Inquisition, in part due to the organizations purge of Imperial citizens that survived the First War for Armageddon.
Of all the Adeptus Astartes, the Wolves of Fenris regard themselves as the Imperium's ultimate weapon, and are proud of it. Where other Chapters, such as the Ultramarines, were made to build empires, the Wolves were made to murder them, and to destroy anyone who opposes the Emperor's will, including other Astartes.[12c] Their unorthodox behavior and organisation as well as their single minded dedication to tear the enemy, any enemy apart like a wolf pack brings down a deadly prey reflects this original purpose.
The Wolves are almost as renowned for their passion for eating, drinking, and storytelling, when not engaged in battle. In contrast to the monastic habits of other Chapters, they enjoy boisterous feasting, eating enormous amounts of meat and guzzling Mjod, a liquor so potent that it would eat through the guts of a normal human[13a]. To many outsiders, therefore, the Space Wolves appear barbarous and lacking in self-control. But in reality it takes a great deal of discipline and focus to be as dangerous and capable of anything as the Space Wolves are. Their original, unique and effective organisation seems not to hinder them at all but instead allow them the operational freedom to be potentially the most dangerous loyalist chapter. The Space Wolves apply great attention to planning, coordination of their packs movement in battle, the encirclement of the prey and the cleanliness of the kill.[12b]
The Space Wolves have a unique structure that is notably different from a standard Codex Chapter. Rather than 10 companies of 100 marines, the Space Wolves consist of 12 Great Companies of varying strengths. Each Great Company is based in the Fang, the Space Wolves Fortress-monastery and is led by a Wolf Lord,who answers only to the Great Wolf.
Each Great Company is a fully self-contained army, with all the troops, vehicles and equipment necessary to make war, as well as the spacecraft necessary to transport itself. They each have their own forges and customs. The size of each Great Company is unknown but the Space Wolves Legion was said to be one of the smaller Legions[Needs Citation]. As each Great Company serves as an independent army, they maintain a much greater number of troops as opposed to codex companies.[10e]
Each Great Company is made of a number of packs that function much like a Space Marine squad. However, their tactical usage varies greatly. Each squad is unique in that it doesn't ever receive reinforcements, making the higher-level squads smaller in number compared to the lowest Blood Claw pack. Many Blood Claw packs start with as many as fifteen marines. However, losses take their toll, and by the time a Blood Claw squad reaches the level of Grey Hunter, normally only 9 or 10 are left. As they age, further losses limit the squad sizes of Long Fangs down to just 5 or less.[10e]
One of the 12 Great Companies is that of the Great Wolf, the Space Wolves' Chapter Master. The Company of the Great Wolf has a similar organisation to the other Great Companies, but additionally includes the Chapter's Wolf Priests, Wolf Scouts and Dreadnoughts.[10e]
- Canon Conflict - In earlier texts, the Company of the Great Wolf was a seperate body that existed in addition to the 12 Great Companies.
Company of the Great Wolf
|Company of the Great Wolf|
Master of the Space Wolves
(Including Bjorn the Fell-Handed)
|Bran Redmaw's Company||Engir Krakendoom's Company||Erik Morkai's Company||Gunnar Red Moon's Company|
Badge of the Bloodied Hunter
Badge of the Sea Wolf
Badge of Morkai
Badge of The Wolf of the Red Moon
|Harald Deathwolf's Company||Bjorn Stormwolf's Company||Egil Iron Wolf's Company||Krom Dragongaze's Company|
Badge of the Great Devourer
Badge of the Thunderwolf
Badge of the Iron Wolf
Badge of the Sun Wolf
|Ragnar Blackmane's Company||Sven Bloodhowl's Company||Kjarl Grimblood's Company||13th Company|
Badge of the Blackmane
Badge of the Fire Breather
Badge of the Fire Wolf
|Lost during the Horus Heresy,
elements of the 13th Company
The Thirteenth Company
Space Wolf legends state that the group that came to be known as the Thirteenth Company was sent by Leman Russ to pursue the Thousand Sons legion, after the failed attempt to eliminate the Chaos-supporting legion. They vanished from Imperial records, and their loss is honoured by a black stone in the Grand Annulus, the stone record of Space Wolf Great Companies that stands in the main hall of the Fang[Needs Citation].
The Thirteenth Company's reappearance at the beginning of Abaddon the Despoiler's Thirteenth Black Crusade has brought them back into the spotlight. They appear to still be in pursuit of the goals that Leman Russ set for them[Needs Citation].
In a typical Codex Chapter, a Neophyte begins his service as a Scout, and, after completing his training and physical transformation into a Space Marine, is assigned to Devastator, Assault, and finally a Tactical Squad.[Needs Citation] By contrast, the Space Wolves' approach reflects the warrior culture of Fenris from which all the Wolves are descended.
- Blood Claws are Neophyte Space Wolves who have just finished their most basic training and initiation rites, including drinking from the Cup of Wulfen and surviving the Test of Morkai. They receive armament similar to Assault Squads in other chapters – a chainsword and bolt pistol, but they do not normally use jump packs. Instead of being assigned to a single Company, Blood Claws are instead assigned to any one of the Great Companies. Their role is to charge headlong into battle, expending their youthful enthusiasm for battle on the enemy and hopefully learning the lessons of war that will enable them to survive.[Needs Citation]
- Skyclaws are reckless trouble makers from the Blood Claw packs, who demonstrate a reckless joy for engaging in close combat, and are "rewarded" with jump packs to aid in their eagerness to charge straight into the line of battle.[10b]
- Grey Hunters are analogous to Tactical Squad marines in other chapters and comprise the majority of any Great Company. These are Blood Claws who have survived the trials on the field of battle, combat experience having made them less impulsive and thus less suited as a force of pure assault. In addition to their combat duties, the Grey Hunters' role is to watch over the Blood Claws, reining in the worst of their reckless behavior, and marking out those likely for advancement[Needs Citation].
- Long Fangs are the oldest and most experienced Space Wolf warriors, having survived terms of service as both Blood Claws and Grey Hunters. They are analogous to Devastator Squads in other chapters, as they are the only Space Wolves entrusted with the use of the chapter's heavy, long-ranged weaponry[Needs Citation].
- Wolf Guards are the personal retinue and bodyguard of the Wolf Lord commanding the Great Company, roughly equivalent to the Veterans or Command Squad units used by other chapters. Wolf Guards are often the most senior and experienced Space Wolves in the chapter, though a younger Wolf may win elevation to the Wolf Guard by performing an act of exceptional valour. Wolf Guards are often granted Terminator Honours, though they make less use of them than the Veterans of other chapters[Needs Citation].
- Wolf Scouts are Space Wolves whose entire pack has been lost or that have left their pack for other reasons. As natural loners, they are ideally suited to work alone behind enemy lines for long periods of time. Space Wolf Scouts are not assigned to any of the Great Companies. They instead answer directly to the Great Wolf and are under his sole command unless assigned to a Wolf Lord and his company on an as-needed basis[Needs Citation].
- Lone Wolf: Space Wolves do not reinforce their packs when casualties occur and for this reason many squads operate at a reduced strength. Even the most experienced packs will sometimes suffer such a great loss that only one survivor remains from the pack. These survivors are known as Lone Wolves[10c]
Like everything having to do with the Space Wolves, this hierarchy is not rigid; the Wolves value bravery and combat prowess rather than seniority, and believe in advancing each warrior according to his merits. For instance, Ragnar Blackmane, the youngest Wolf Lord in the chapter's history, was elevated to Berek Thunderfist's Wolf Guard straight from the Blood Claws, bypassing the rank of Grey Hunter altogether. By the same token, Lukas the Trickster is a far more skilled warrior than many Wolf Guards, yet he has never made it out of the Blood Claws, being universally despised by all the Wolf Lords for his irreverent behavior.
- Canon Conflict - In the short story In the Belly of the Beast by William King, a squad of neophytes is inducted into the chapter as Scouts, rather than Blood Claws.
- Great Wolf: The Chapter Master of the Space Wolves, the Great Wolf is chosen from among the Wolf Lords, and leads his own Great Company. The current Great Wolf is Logan Grimnar who has held the position for the past 700 years.
- Wolf Lord: each Great Company has a commander (equivalent to a Captain in other chapters), chosen from that company’s Wolf Guard. It is his duty to organise his Great Company, which adopts that Lord's name and sigil, and often changes its battle tactics to reflect his personality and temperament.
- Wolf Priests combine the roles of Chaplain and Apothecary within the chapter. They are selected from any part of the chapter but usually from the Long Fangs or Wolf Guard due to the greater wisdom of these marines. Instead of using codex medical equipment, Wolf Priests using healing potions and balms, using knowledge passed down from one Wolf Priest to the next. They are also responsible for the selection of new Aspirants to the chapter, observing the frequent skirmishes among the human inhabitants of Fenris and selecting worthy young men to undergo the trials.
- Rune Priests are the Wolves' equivalent to the Librarians of other chapters. It is their duty to keep the knowledge of the chapter’s history, reciting the great sagas of old. In battle they wield formidable psychic powers, rooted in the shamanistic traditions of Fenris.[Needs Citation]
- Iron Priests are the Wolves' equivalent of the Techmarines of other chapters. They are required to keep the equipment of their Great Company in working order and maintain the machine spirits of its vehicles and weaponry, including the Dreadnoughts in the depths of the Fang, which they must rouse from their deep slumbers if they are needed in battle.[Needs Citation]
Amongst the number of Dreadnoughts in the Space Wolves chapter, some are extremely ancient, carrying warriors, such as Bjorn the Fell-Handed, who walked beneath the same sky as the Emperor himself, and who stood beside Leman Russ in battle. These dreadnoughts are revered and so respected is their skill in battle that on rare occasions, a Dreadnought may be called upon to lead an army into battle. The troops following in his footsteps will chant his name, remembering the many sagas they have heard of his exploits. This is a fearsome scene to behold for any enemy[Needs Citation].
As well as the usual Space Marine Vehicles deployed by the Chapter, the Space Wolves keep a number of Leman Russ Exterminators in their arsenal - in honour of Leman Russ. They use these in battle rarely but to devastating effect, the tanks' fearsome array of weaponry enhanced further by the skills of the marines inside.[Needs Citation]
Space Wolves Equipment is similar to that of Codex chapters. In some ways it is more primitive – for instance, Iron Priests do not have access to a full Servo-harness or Thunderfire Cannons[Needs Citation]. Similarly, some of the equipment associated with the Imperial cult such as the Chaplain's Rosarius or the Apothecary's Reductor have their own unique variants among the Space Wolves, such as the Wolf Amulet and the Fang of Morkai.
The Space Wolves recruit their new initiates from the native humans of Fenris. Wolf Priests venture abroad from the Fang from time to time to walk amongst the inhabitants of the feral world, challenging the locals' champions to bouts of eating, drinking, or wrestling. Invariably, of course, the gene-enhanced Wolf Priest will emerge victorious, and with them they will take their prize: the best of the champion tribesmen to bring back to the Fang, where they undergo many grueling trials. Some, however, forego the match against the Wolf Priest if they have already proved their prowess in battle.
The Wolf Priests keep a careful eye on the battles and hunts of the Fenrisian tribesmen, and should one display extreme heroism or martial feats, and return to their tribe, battered and bloodied as they may be, the Wolf Priest will descend again into the realm of mortals to collect the warrior, and deliver him from death by making him an Astartes.
Once they have passed all of their preliminary trials, they are administered the Test of Morkai, where the initiate is given the first strand of the Canis Helix gene, and thrown out into the wilds outside the Fang. If they overcome the deadly side effects of their chapter's geneseed, and make it back to the Fang alive, they are accepted into the ranks of the Space Wolves with open arms, and the remaining procedures are undergone to turn the recruit into a full fledged warrior of the Emperor.[10h]
Noted Elements of the Space Wolves
Relics and Artifacts
- Hrafnkel - Flagship (Heresy Era)
- Gylfarheim - Battle Barge[15d]
- Holmgang - Battle Barge
- Wolf of Fenris - Strike Cruiser[10i]
- Runefyre - Gladius Class Frigate, boarded by Daemons[15a]
- Frostborn - Hunter Class Destroyer[15b]
- Veregelt - Destroyer-class vessel, destroyed[15c]
Notable Space Wolves
- Leman Russ - Primarch
- Bjorn the Fell-Handed - Dreadnought; was previously Great Wolf and a Wolf Guard to Leman Russ
- Bulveye - Wolf Lord of the Thirteenth Company[Needs Citation]
- Freyr - Long Fang during the Horus Heresy[Needs Citation]
- Logan Grimnar - Great Wolf (Chapter Master)
- Ragnar Blackmane - Wolf Lord; succeeded Berek Thunderfist
- Bran Redmaw - Wolf Lord
- Engir Krakendoom - Wolf Lord
- Harald Deathwolf - Wolf Lord
- Erik Morkai - Wolf Lord
- Gunnar Red Moon - Wolf Lord
- Bjorn Stormwolf - Wolf Lord
- Egil Iron Wolf - Wolf Lord
- Sven Bloodhowl - Wolf Lord
- Kjarl Grimblood - Wolf Lord
- Krom Dragongaze - Wolf Lord
- Ulrik the Slayer - Wolf Priest
- Njal Stormcaller - Rune Priest
- Arjac Rockfist - The Man-Mountain, Anvil of Fenris. Wolf Guard, Before becoming a Space Wolf he was a blackmsith of the Bear Claw tribe. He has risen to become the personal champion of Logan Grimnar[10a]
- Lukas the Trickster - The Strifeson, The Laughing One, The Jackalwolf. Veteran who has never risen from the ranks of the Blood Claws[10a]
- Canis Wolfborn - Thunderwolf riding Wolf Guard to Harald Deathwolf [10a]
- Gymir the Ice-Fisted - Dreadnought[Needs Citation]
- Ranek Icewalker- Wolf Priest[Needs Citation]
- Gnyrll Bluetooth - Commander of the Wolf of Fenris[Needs Citation]
- Torvald - Rune Priest, member of the Thirteenth Company[Needs Citation]
- Haegr the Mountain - former member of the Wolfblade and comrade of Ragnar Blackmane[Needs Citation]
- Torin The Wayfarer - a member of the Wolfblade, the only one to voluntarily become a member[Needs Citation]
- Sigvald Deathgranter
Symbols and Colours
The Space Wolves wear blue-grey coloured armour with other colours as highlights, notably red, yellow, black and white, and often adorned with tokens taken from wolves, such as furs and teeth. The Legion symbol is a silhouette of a snarling wolf.
Great Company Badges
The Space Wolves have a rather different system of markings than that used by more Codex adherent Chapters. Rather than using the company markings as laid down in the Codex Astartes, the Space Wolves use a number of different wolf symbols to denote the different Great Companies that make up the chapter. These are normally a stylised wolf emblem denoting some aspect of the native Fenrisian mythology. These are chosen by a new Wolf Lord upon his election from the ranks of the Wolf Guard, and are adopted by all of the Space Wolves within the Great Company as a mark of fealty. They are also woven onto the various Great Company banners, The symbol remains with the Great Company until the Wolf Lord falls in battle, whereupon a new Wolf Lord is chosen, and so the badge changes.
Even these marks bow down to the Space Wolves' reputation for nonconformity, and hence lack of any formal uniform system. There is never only one way to represent a Great Company badge, and within a Great Company it is likely to find a number of variants of the badge being used at the same time. Indeed, there are currently three different stylisations of the Blackmane Wolf emblem (currently used by Ragnar Blackmane's Great Company) in Imperial records. Indeed, over the centuries many hundreds of different styles of badges have been recorded by Imperial scribes.
The one company that does not change its icon is the household of the Great Wolf. The household uses "The Wolf That Stalks Between Stars", the badge of Leman Russ himself, as its emblem. This badge is perhaps unique within the Space Wolves, as there are no recorded variants of it, a testament to the respect that the Space Wolves have for their Primarch. It is this badge that represents the Space Wolves as a chapter, and is woven on the Chapter's banner.
Also, many of the Space Wolves most honoured and treasured relics carry this symbol, having been in the possession or service of the Chapter (and hence the Imperium) since the days when Russ walked among the stars. Many of the Chapter's most sacred Banners have a rendition of this symbol on them, a tangible link to the time when Russ walked among them. Whilst many of these are treasured in their own right, perhaps the most treasured of all is the Dreadnought Bjorn the Fell-Handed, who fought alongside Russ during the Great Crusade. He carries the mark on his Dreadnought armour to show this perhaps unique distinction.
The Space Wolves have a long, varied, and altogether proud warrior heritage. They especially appreciate acts of bravery, courage and skill among their own comrades, and proudly display badges that denote these acts. These badges are normally painted or carved onto the armour and weapons of the Space Wolf.
As with most Space Wolf displays, there is no formal system of awards, it only matters that those the Space Wolf fights with understand the significance of the symbol. However, some symbols have acquired a special significance to the Space Wolves over time, and the Sergeant and Veteran badges are good examples of this. There are also some more general symbolism which is used in the honour badges; badges with bones tend to signify wounds suffered in battle, knife and claw symbols represent ferocity and bravery in battle and wolf tails signify great courage in battle.
It is quite common for Space Wolves of different Great Companies to find themselves fighting alongside one another in the same task force. In order to aid identification, and to provide a greater amount of task force cohesion on the battlefield, an army marking is usually applied to the Space Wolf's armour, as well as to the vehicles of the task force. As with all badges, there are some that are preferred over others. Of particular note is that used by the current task force of Ragnar Blackmane; A fanged skull superimposed on two crossed bones, mounted on a black lozenge. This particular badge has appeared many times in the past, and therefore probably has some special significance to the Space Wolves.
|Loyalist||I - Dark Angels · V - White Scars
VI- Space Wolves · VII- Imperial Fists
IX- Blood Angels · X- Iron Hands
XIII- Ultramarines · XVIII- Salamanders
XIX- Raven Guard
|Traitor||III- Emperor's Children · IV- Iron Warriors|
VIII- Night Lords · XII- World Eaters
XIV- Death Guard · XV- Thousand Sons
XVI- Luna Wolves/Sons of Horus · XVII- Word Bearers
XX- Alpha Legion
- 1: Codex: Space Wolves (2nd Edition) pg. 11
- 2: Codex: Space Wolves (3rd Edition) [Needs Citation]
- 3: Codex: Space Marines (4th Edition), [Needs Citation]
- 4: Index Astartes Volume II [Needs Citation]
- 5: Codex: Armageddon [Needs Citation]
- 6: Codex: Eye of Terror [Needs Citation]
- 7: Warhammer 40,000: Compilation, Leman Russ [Needs Citation]
- 8: Imperial Armour Volume Two - Space Marines and Forces of the Inquisition - Pg. 74, 107, 162
- 8a: pg.37-38
- 9: Warrior Brood by C.S. Goto [Needs Citation]
- 10: Codex: Space Wolves (5th Edition)
- 11: A Thousand Sons (Novel) by Graham McNeill - Ch 14
- 12: Battle of the Fang (Novel) by Chris Wraight
- 13: Prospero Burns by Dan Abnett - Pg. 98,131, 134-135, 190
- 13a: Chapter 4, Pg. 131
- 14: Deathwatch Core Rulebook pg.339
- 15: The Emperor's Gift (Novel)
- 16: Codex: Chaos Space Marines (6th Edition) pg.25
- 17: WD282 pg.61