Inquisition (Warhammer 40,000)

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The Inquisition (The Holy Orders of the Emperor's Inquisition) is an organization in the fictional Warhammer 40,000 universe. They act as the secret police of the Imperium, hunting down any and all threats to the stability of the God-Emperor's realm. In fiction relating to the games, Inquisitors are usually represented by extremely powerful, intelligent, and talented individuals. In the games, Inquisitors are usually powerful combatants with a variety of specialized abilities with a party of followers who improve and protect the Inquisitor. Inquisitors also grant the player access to many new units, such as Imperial Assassins and Daemonhosts.

Development of the Inquisition[edit]

There were originally only two Orders within the Inquisition (Ordo Malleus and Ordo Xenos), but a third (the Ordo Hereticus) was added after the events of the Age of Apostasy.[1] A further fourth the Ordo Sicarius was formed following the Wars of Vindication.[2] It is rumored that the Inquisition has thousands of independent ordos and cells for various goals and tasks, and the resources they pool together can rival those individually owned by Inquisitor Lords.

Within the narrative provided by source books and other media, a number of Inquisitors are considered to be famous. Those include Gideon Ravenor, Ario Barzano who is featured in the book Nightbringer by Graham McNeill, Gregor Eisenhorn the main character in the Eisenhorn series by Dan Abnett, and Jaq Draco, the main character in the Inquisition War series, written by Ian Watson. In the graphic novel Daemonifuge, by Kev Walker, the character Silas Hand features prominently.[3]

The development of other characters alludes to important literature works. Fydor Karamazov, Fyodor is known as the Pyrophant Judge of Salem Proctor. This is a reference to Arthur Miller's The Crucible, Proctor being the name of one convicted, yet innocent, witch; and Salem being the puritan township he lived in. His name is a reference to The Grand Inquisitor a chapter in the Russian authors Fyodor Dostoevsky's book entitled The Brothers Karamazov.[4]


  1. Priestley, Rick (2004). Warhammer 40,000 (4th ed.). Nottingham: Games Workshop. ISBN 1-84154-468-X. Search this book on Logo.png
  2. Exterminatus Issue 8, Bringers of Death Page 22
  3. Walker, Kev (1999). Daemonifuge (1st ed.). Nottingham: Black Library. ISBN 1-84154-117-6. Search this book on Logo.png
  4. McNeil, Graham; Hoare, Andy; Haines, Pete (2003). Warhammer 40,000 Codex: Witchhunters (1st ed.). Nottingham: Games Workshop. ISBN 1-84154-485-X. Search this book on Logo.png

See also[edit]

  • Inquisitor (game)


External links[edit]

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