40K Lore: The Vengeful Spirit – Chariot of Abaddon


Abaddon has his eyes set on Terra. Here’s how he will get there – at the helm of the Vengeful Spirit.


The Vengeful Spirit was a Gloriana Class Battleship that served as the flagship of the Warmaster Horus during the Great Crusade and the Horus Heresy. Today, it serves as the flagship of Abaddon the Despoiler and the Black Legion.

The Vengeful Spirit is an ancient vessel, constructed in the 30th Millennium by the artisans of Mars. The Vengeful Spirit was the largest of the Gloriana-class command vessels alongside the HrafnkelConqueror, and Iron Blood. Heavily armed, the Vengeful Spirit gained a formidable reputation during the Great Crusade as the command ship of Primarch and later Imperial Warmaster Horus Lupercal. The mere arrival of the Vengeful Spirit would often result in the surrender of an entire System.

The Gloriana Class Battleship was an ancient and powerful Battleship design used by the Legiones Astartes during the Great Crusade and Horus Heresy. Officially classified as a type of command Battle Barge, the vessels were around 20 kilometers in length, though their size and appearance varied greatly. These massive ships were frequently used as flagships for Imperial fleets and even Primarchs. The Gloriana Class vessels are the largest known Imperial warships after the Phalanx and Furious Abyss-class vessels. The largest known Gloriana-class vessels were the Vengeful SpiritConquerorHrafnkel, and Iron Blood.

As of M41, the design appears to have fallen out of use.


From the strategium, and later Lupercal’s Court, upon the command deck, Horus would coordinate the military and diplomatic efforts of the 63rd Expeditionary Fleet, and countless thousands of personnel lived and worked on board. Additionally because it was so old the core of the ship was a rotting, empty labyrinth of filth and rats. Over time as the Sons of Horus became corrupted during the Horus Heresy, it became less of a warship and more of a temple to the dark gods of Chaos whom Horus came to revere. The final battle between Horus and the Emperor took place on the twisted bridge of the ship where humanity’s bright future was shattered beyond repair.

Following death of Horus and the defeat of the traitors in The Scouring, the Vengeful Spirit fell under the control First Captain Ezekyle Abaddon. Somehow, the vessel became embedded under the former Eldar world of Asa’ciaral deep within the Eye of Terror. With the Sons of Horus in disarray after the fall of Maleum, an expedition led by Falkus KibreIskandar Khayon, and others eventually managed to find both Abaddon and the Vengeful Spirit. Convinced to command once again, Abaddon used the vessel to crush the Emperor’s Children and their clone of Horus on Harmony. Following the Battle of Harmony, Abaddon resumed command of the Sons of Horus. The Vengeful Spirit became the flagship of the newly christened Black Legion, a role it continues to this day. The Vengeful Spirit is known to have appeared in the 10th 12th and 13th Black Crusades.


The ship has appeared in different forms over the years in GW artwork.

~The big question – Will the Vengeful Spirit make it to orbit above Terra – a second time?


  • 6Cobra

    Whatever happened to the ‘Planet Killer’ as Abbadon’s flagship? Is that vessel still out there, or did it get retconned?

    • KellyJ

      Arkham used it to try and establish his own empire, but ran into a force of Imperial cruisers. Without support the ship was supposedly destroyed.

  • Admiral Raptor

    This makes me miss Battle Fleet Gothic. That game was awesome, hopefully it will come back in the not too distant future.

    • orionburn

      It’s been confirmed that it will be coming back…just not the when. I miss it as well and can’t wait for its return. I hope it is at least out by the end of the year.

      • Papist00000001

        Where was it confirmed that it would be back? Because that would be the best!!!!

        • orionburn

          Way back when the Specialist Games division was “born.” They didn’t confirm all of the old games would come back, but BFG was one they said is a go but no firm date on it.

    • Roy Amkreutz

      Battlefleet Gothic is still around.

      There is even a painting competition every year.