|This article is about the Black Templars Battle Barge; for the Novella by Guy Haley, see The Eternal Crusader (Novella).
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 Second Founding
The Black Templars as a Chapter were, according to legend, officially created in the aftermath of the Iron Cage. Standing in the Chamber of the First Proclamation, Dorn decreed that Sigismund would be the first High Marshal of the Black Templars. Dorn granted the vessel to Sigismund and his 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]
War of the Beast
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.
In late M41, the Eternal Crusader was the lead ship of the combined Space Marine fleet that fought in support of Battlefleet Armageddon against the orks of Ghazghkull Mag Uruk Thraka in the opening void skirmishes of the Third War for Armageddon.[4b][4c]
- Chamber of the First Proclamation - Also known as Sigismund's Hall. During the Second Founding, it was here that Rogal Dorn formally recognised the Black Templars as a Chapter in the aftermath of the Iron Cage incident.
- The Temple of Dorn
- The Scriptorum of Truths: In place of a Librarius, the Black Templars operate this archive. An annex of the Temple of Dorn, it is a repository for the Imperial Creed and the Chapter's history. It is said to be a massive archive of tomes and scrolls which would take a single person a lifetime to fully read. It is also said that this archive has been periodically purged over the millennial, with ancient truths deemed heretical burned in the name of spiritual purity.
- 1: Codex: Black Templars (4th Edition), pg. 8
- 2: Throneworld (Novel), Chapter One
- 3: Black Legion (Novel)
- 4: Helsreach (Novel) - Armageddon (Anthology)
- 5: Blood and Fire (Novella) - Armageddon (Anthology), Chapter II
- 6: Codex: Black Templars (9th Edition), pg. 15