40K Lore: Know Your Phoenix Lords
How many Eldar Phoenix Lords do you know? I bet you missed some…
via our sister site Lexicanum:
The Phoenix Lords are Exarchs so ancient that they have no shrines and no Craftworlds to call home. They wander from world to world, instinctively driven by war, attracted by intuitive power to places of great danger and need. During moments of desperation they appear, sometimes alone but often several together, depending upon the perils faced. Using the Eldar Webway they move from Craftworld to Craftworld and from planet to planet, following in the path of the Bloody-handed God.
The Phoenix Lords are immortal, after a fashion. When a Phoenix Lord is slain in battle, his place is taken by another Eldar who assumes his costume and identity. In this way the Phoenix Lord is reborn into a fresh cycle of existence. His suit includes a spirit stone which contains the spirits of all the Eldar who have become that Phoenix Lord. Yet, no matter how many different individuals a Phoenix Lord may have been, his mind is forever the same, driven by the dominant personality of the first and greatest warrior to wear the suit.
The names of the Phoenix Lords are well known throughout the Craftworlds, and their deeds form part of the legends of the Eldar. No one knows exactly how many Phoenix Lords there are, for some are seen but rarely, while others disappear for millenia only to reappear suddenly and unexpectedly. Some have undoubtedly perished far away, their suits lying upon some hostile world awaiting discovery by some predestined Aspect Warrior doomed to don the armour and become the ancient hero for another cycle of his existence.
Some of the Phoenix Lords are as old as the Fall. They were heroes during the cataclysm, and were the first to bear the spirit stones of the Warrior Aspects. It is said that Asurmen was the first of the Phoenix Lords and that he trained the first of the Aspect Warriors, the Asurya, in the Path of the Warrior. The first Exarchs, known as the Asurya – the children of Asur, founded the shrines of the Warrior Aspects that remain to this day.
It is said that the Phoenix Lords will fight at the Rhana Dandra – the final battle between Chaos and the material universe.
Arhra – “The fallen Phoenix who burns with the dark light of Chaos”, founder of the Striking Scorpions Shrine
Asurmen – First of the Phoenix Lords, founder of the shrine of the Dire Avengers
Baharroth – Founder of the Swooping Hawks
Fuegan – Founder of the Fire Dragons
Irillyth – Phoenix Lord of the Shadow Spectres who has since vanished.
Jain Zar – First of the Asurya, founder of the Howling Banshees
Karandras – Phoenix Lord of the Striking Scorpions, but not the originator of that shrine
Maugan Ra – Founder of the Dark Reapers
Drastanta – Phoenix Lord of the Shining Spears, currently missing.
Amon Harakht – Phoenix Lord of the Eagle Pilots.
The Warp Spiders Aspect do not have a known Phoenix Lord. However, some claim that the “Wraith Spider” (Lhykosidae), a similar position on the Kaelor Craftworld is in fact the Phoenix Lord of the Warp Spiders. Others disagree with this due to the tendency of the Phoenix Lords appearing far earlier in history to help found their aspect.