Khorne, The Blood God

Who is Khorne? The Ultimate Guide to the Chaos God of War, Rage and Blood

Khorne, the Chaos God of war, violence, rage and bloodshed. we’ll share everything you need to know about the infamous Blood God, his place in the Warhammer 40k universe, his Daemonic servants, worshippers, and more.

In this article we will cover:

  1. Who and what Khorne is in the Warhammer 40k universe.
  2. Khorne’s philosophy
  3. The number eight
  4. Khorne’s Daemonic armies. Known as the Blood Legions, and include Bloodthirsters, Bloodletters, Flesh Hounds, and Juggernauts.
  5. Notable mortal champions of Khorne include Khârn the Betrayer and the World Eaters Traitor Legion.
  6. Khorne’s rivalry with Slaanesh, the Chaos God of hedonism and excess.

If you are looking for an overview of the Forces of Chaos, read our guide here: The Forces of Chaos

The Origins and Nature of Khorne

Khorne, also known as Kharneth, the Lord of Rage, the Lord of Blood, and the Blood God, is the Chaos God of anger, violence, war and murder. He was the first of the Chaos Gods to fully awaken, coming into existence during Terra’s Middle Ages – a fitting birthplace for a deity who thrives on conflict and bloodshed.

Khorne is described as an immense, broad, and muscular figure clad in brass armor, with the snarling face of a hound or a ravenous predator. He sits upon a brass throne atop a mountain of skulls – the remains of his countless victims and fallen champions. Violence and fury radiate from his very being.

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Khorne’s Philosophy: Blood for the Blood God!

The Blood God’s dogma is simple and brutal – he cares not from whence the blood flows, only that it flows without cease. Every murder, every act of violence, feeds Khorne’s insatiable hunger for death and destruction. His followers, from frothing berserkers to hardened warriors, live to spill blood and claim skulls in his name.

Unlike some of his rival Chaos Gods, Khorne has little use for trickery or scheming. He desires only battle, slaughter, and the glorious clash of arms. Martial pride, courage, and honor are said to be as pleasing to Khorne as decapitated heads and gushing arteries – though many of his more fanatical worshippers would disagree.

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The Sacred Number Eight

For reasons that remain a mystery, even to his most learned followers, Khorne has a deep affinity for the number eight. This sacred numeral manifests in countless aspects of his worship and domain – from the number of towers that ring his Brass Citadel, to the number of trials a slain Daemon must overcome to return to his service.

Khorne’s mortal champions carve the eightfold-star upon their flesh and wargear, and his Daemonic legions, the fierce “Blood Legions”, are always organized in multiples of eight. Many dark prophecies even claim that the Blood God’s thirst for slaughter will only be sated after eight ages of endless war.

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Daemons of Khorne: The Blood Legions

Khorne’s Daemonic armies, known as the Blood Legions, are the largest and most warlike of all the Chaos hosts. These frenzied cohorts of red-skinned horrors, all rippling muscles and gnashing teeth, exist only to kill and shed blood. Though they appear similar to many traditional depictions of Daemons and Devils, the servants of Khorne have a distinctly martial and almost chivalric character, and are organized into strict hierarchies based on physical might.

Bloodthirsters: Unfettered Fury Incarnate

Greatest and most terrible of Khorne’s servants are the dreaded Bloodthirsters – colossal, winged monsters with the bodies of hulking warriors and the snarling heads of hounds or great hunting cats. These mighty Daemon lords wield tremendous axes and swords, and burn with such undiluted fury that reality itself warps and smolders in their presence. To face a Bloodthirster in battle is to face unfettered rage given form and purpose.

Bloodletters: The Foot Soldiers of Khorne

Far more numerous than the mighty Bloodthirsters are the Bloodletters – the snarling, horned foot soldiers of Khorne’s Daemonic legions. These vicious killers, with their crimson hides and jagged hell-forged swords, surge across the battlefield in great masses, screaming out their hatred and battlelust as they fall upon the foe in a tide of blades. Khorne’s mortal champions prize the Bloodletters as the purest embodiments of the Blood God’s wrathful creed.

Flesh Hounds, Juggernauts, and Other Daemonic Beasts

Khorne’s Daemonic legions also include a number of bestial horrors, from the wolf-like Flesh Hounds that track down cowardly foes by the scent of their fear, to the hulking, brazen-bodied Juggernauts that serve as mounts for favored champions. These snarling, monstrous creatures add a much-needed degree of speed and mobility to the otherwise lumbering advance of Khorne’s Blood Legions.

Notable Mortal Champions of Khorne

While Khorne clearly favors his Daemonic servants, he also bestows his blessings upon a select number of mortal champions and warlords whose deeds are soaked in blood and glory. From legendary Chaos Lords to ruthless Traitor Astartes, these avatars of slaughter have committed their souls to Khorne in exchange for martial prowess, resilience, and the right to lead his armies in realspace.

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Khârn the Betrayer: The Greatest of Khorne’s Mortal Champions

First and most favored amongst Khorne’s mortal champions is Khârn the Betrayer, the legendary berserker-captain of the World Eaters Traitor Legion. Khârn won the Blood God’s favor during the Horus Heresy, when his already prodigious appetite for slaughter grew into an insatiable hunger that has never left him. He has become an unstoppable avatar of Khorne’s fury, marching eternally to war surrounded by a cadre of slavering berserkers.

The World Eaters: A Legion Bathed in Blood

Of all the Traitor Legions that fell to Chaos during the Horus Heresy, none are so inextricably bound to Khorne as the World Eaters. Under the leadership of their gladiator-primarch Angron, these ruthless warriors underwent crude psycho-surgery and blood rituals that transformed them into frothing, hyper-aggressive berserkers long before they swore themselves to the Blood God.

The centuries since the Heresy have seen the World Eaters descend into unmatched depths of savagery and bloodlust. Now, they live only to kill and kill again in Khorne’s name, a broken shadow of a once-great Legion twisted into the purest expression of the Blood God’s remorseless creed.

Khorne’s Eternal Rivalry with Slaanesh

Amongst the Chaos Gods, none draw Khorne’s ire more than Slaanesh, the Dark Prince of Chaos. Where Khorne embodies rage, violence and the martial pride of the warrior, Slaanesh revels in the sensual extremes of experience – in unbridled hedonism and perverse aesthetics. To Khorne, there can be no greater antithesis to his own nature, and so the two dark gods remain locked in an eternal, brotherly rivalry, their champions and Daemonic legions clashing as readily with each other as with the forces of the Corpse-Emperor.


Khorne’s Place in the Warhammer 40k Universe

In the grim darkness of the 41st Millennium, Khorne’s influence can be felt across the galaxy. From the marauding warbands of Chaos Space Marines that slaughter entire populations in orgies of violence, to the brutal worlds where Khorne’s mortal worshippers spill blood in endless rituals of sacrifice, the Warhammer 40k universe is a realm forged by and for the Lord of War and Murder.

Even amongst the nominally loyal servants of the Imperium, the temptations of Khorne’s creed are an ever-present threat. Many a noble Imperial Guardsman or Space Marine has heard the whispers of the blood-soaked god in the din of battle and found themselves lost to the red haze of berserk fury, transformed by the instant into a willing thrall of Khorne’s unending cruelty.

If you are looking for a much more in depth look into Khorne, head over to the Fandom Wiki

Blood for the Blood God, Skulls for the Skull Throne!

To sum up, Khorne, the Chaos God of war, violence, murder and rage, is one of the most brutal and unrelenting entities in the Warhammer 40k mythos. He cares not for subtlety or sorcery, but only the glorious music of clashing steel, the copper-tang of freshly spilled blood, and the screams of the dying.

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