"When there is no other way, the perilous path is the only road to salvation."
Eldrad Ulthran was the mightiest and most ancient Farseer of the Eldar's Ulthwé Craftworld. He was perhaps the most gifted psyker ever born amongst the Eldar, his incredible foresight having saved many thousands of Eldar lives. Among Eldrad's accomplishments are supposedly: igniting the Second War for Armageddon so as to spare the precious lives of 10,000 Eldar, igniting the Sanapan Scouring, the Mortis Annihilation and the Third Coming of Orian, as well as warning the Emperor of Horus' treachery and warning the Eldar of Iyanden of the coming of the Tyranids. He created and carried into battle the Staff of Ulthamar, and his resilience and power has been a rallying point for the declining Eldar race.
Before the Fall of Cadia, Eldrad was over 10,000 Terran years old, and was the first to warn the Imperium of Man of the Warmaster Horus' treachery. However, it was the Primarch of the Emperor's Children Legion Fulgrim he warned, and not the Emperor of Mankind, only later discovering during their meeting on the Eldar Maiden World of Tarsus that he had made a terrible mistake and that Fulgrim had already been corrupted by exposure to a Greater Daemon of Slaanesh. It was through Eldrad's foresight that the Eldar began a series of raids against several worlds controlled by the Orks, culminating in the emergence of Ghazghkull Thraka as perhaps the most powerful Ork Warlord in the galaxy, and the diversion of his WAAAGH! to the hive world of Armageddon, rather than allow the Orks to move against the Craftworlds. Eldrad deliberately instigated the conflict that ultimately became the Second War for Armageddon, costing the Imperium millions of human lives, to save 10,000 Eldar lives. Eldrad believed that such a sacrifice was justified since the Eldar were a nearly extinct race and every Eldar life was more precious than the teeming masses of trillions of humans who still inhabited the galaxy. Had it not been for his warning, the Iyanden Craftworld would have been completely unprepared for the attack of Hive Fleet Kraken.
Eldrad's predictions were also instrumental in the closing of the Warp rift above the Eldar Exodite world of Haran. For many months, massed Eldar forces, joined by the mighty Phoenix Lord Aspect Heroes and led by Eldrad prosecuted a great campaign against the Forces of Chaos. Eventually they succeeded in closing the Warp rift, but at the cost of many Eldar lives. This has lead to the planet being known as Haranshemash, meaning "the world of blood and tears" in the Eldar Lexicon.
On the world of Andante IV, Abaddon the Despoiler engineered a meeting between himself and Eldrad by attacking a Webway gate leading to Ulthwé. His ultimate aim was to wipe out the Seer Council, and many Eldar deaths came in the battle that lead to Eldrad and Abaddon's meeting in combat. Abaddon ultimately escaped.
The Treachery of Vision
The Treachery of Vision is a text written by Farseer Eldrad Ulthran of Craftworld Ulthwé. This series of writings spoke of the beginning of existence and how the universe had formed. Within these texts, Eldrad also spoke of the Old Ones as well as their War in Heaven with the Ancient Enemy which had emerged from the hearts of a thousand suns. As such, it spoke of the time when the C'tan were given physical form and how they waged a war against the Old Ones. In addition, it spoke of how the Old Ones drew power from the raw Immaterium to combat this foe. According to The Treachery of Vision, Eldrad postulated that it was during that ancient conflict between the C'tan and Old Ones which led to the formation of daemons. He also mentioned that he had heard that there were Eldar more ancient than Asurmen who were born during this time and fed on the power of the Warp drawn by the Old Ones. This text also spoke of the Black Library and how the most ancient of knowledge was being guarded by the Harlequins who bear an imprint of the Old Ones themselves. Eldrad wrote that he had seen those texts and noted that they were exquisite. Eldrad Ulthran spoke of how if the Ancient Enemy (the Necrons) returned, than their return would signal the completion of their Great Work which would seal the Warp itself and that the Sons of Asuryan would be cut off from their life source. Furthermore, the Eye of Isha would dim and close, thus ending the great legacy of the Old Ones. This is because the Ancient Enemy possessed no souls and thus had little to fear from the severing of the connections between the Materium and the Immaterium that tied all of reality together. The Farseer also wrote of how the Eldar race's deep well of desire had first brought the manifestation of daemons onto the physical universe.
Eldrad has supreme mastery over the psychic arts. Like all his Farseer kin, he can read the future by casting wraithbone runes, communicate telepathically across huge distances, and enter visionary trances that allow him to observe the galaxy without moving a muscle. In battle, he can melt the minds of those who cross him, summon eldritch blasts, and even hurl aside war machines with a pulse of thought. To Eldrad, such crude displays of power are last resorts. He is a master in the arts of manipulation, so adept at tipping the scales of destiny that he can influence the course of fate with a single death, just as a master fencer kills with a single thrust. He has saved the Craftworlds on numerous occasions. Once, he even attempted to save the men of the Imperium from the cataclysmic events of the Horus Heresy -- though his warnings fell on deaf ears
- Armour of the Last Runes - The runic scripts upon Eldrad's breastplate of Eldar Armour are incredibly powerful wards against harm. One schooled in deciphering Eldar Lexicon runes would see they speak of enduring until the final dying of the light.
- Staff of Ulthamar - This ancient Force Staff is always carried by the chief Farseer of Ulthwé, and forms a hyperspatial link with the Infinity Circuit of that Craftworld. Drawing on its power, Eldrad is able to access the wellspring of power and wisdom that flows through the Craftworld, enhancing his psychic powers.
- Shuriken Pistol
- Witchblade - A Witchblade is the standard weapon of Eldar Warlocks and Farseers, and is essentially a potent Force Weapon. When wielded by a psyker in melee combat, they are utterly devastating. Used to enhance and unleash the latent psychic power of the wielder, Witchblades are effective against all targets; humanoid, xenos, beast, daemon or vehicle. A Witch Blade contains a helix-shaped, crystalline psychic matrix embedded with runes to channel and focus a Seer's psychic energies.
- Ghosthelm - The Ghosthelm is a helmet worn by Eldar Farseers. It incorporates intricate crystalline psychic circuitry which helps to mask the wearer's soul or spirit in the Warp, protecting them from the depredations of daemons and other Warp entities.
- Runes of Warding
- Runes of Witnessing
In the original version of the 13th Black Crusade storyline, Eldrad Ulthran suffered a far darker fate. He was believed by most Eldar and humans to have perished during the Cadian campaign of the 13th Black Crusade, when he was caught upon a daemonically-possessed Blackstone Fortress, or "Talisman of Vaul" as these ancient artefacts of the Old Ones were known to the Eldar. Eldrad had sought to stop the fortress from destroying the vitally important Imperial world of Cadia, a planet that was covered in ancient Necron monoliths called the Cadian Pylons that calmed the raging Warp Storms of the Eye of Terror and kept them from spreading, potentially destroying several Eldar Craftworlds that orbited the giant Warp rift. As he attempted to commune with and stop the corrupted spirit of the fortress, the Farseer learned that no minor daemonic power had corrupted the machine; the deed had been done by the psyche of the Chaos God Slaanesh itself. In vain, Eldrad tried to disengage his mind from the battle with the fortress' possessing spirit. But Slaanesh proved too strong and his soul was dragged screaming into the dark core of the fortress by the Eldar's Great Enemy. His current whereabouts are unknown.
Yet a flicker of hope remained for Eldrad. After the noble Eldar's soul was believed lost to Slaanesh, all but a handful of his hundreds of Waystones became lifeless and dull. Yet if just one of the Spirit Stones retained its spark, Eldrad's soul endured whole somewhere within the Realm of Chaos, seeking its freedom -- or rescue.
This story has now been wholly superceded by the 2017 "Gathering Storm" storyline which retconned the 13th Black Crusade and made Eldrad Ulthran a key player in the awakening of the Eldar God of the Dead, Ynnead and the birth of the Aeldari Ynnari faction.
- Citadel Journal 17, "The Storm, The Hunter and the Seer: Eldrad Ulthran, The Farseer of Ulthwe", pp. 47-48
- Codex: Eldar (6th Edition) (Ebook), pp. 53, 56-57, 110, 173-176, 197, 242
- Codex: Eldar (4th Edition), pp. 50-51
- Codex: Eldar (3rd Edition), pg. 37
- Codex: Eldar (2nd Edition), pg. 33
- Craftworld Iyandend - A Codex: Eldar Supplement (6th Edition), pp. 23-24
- Throneworld (Novel) by Guy Haley
- Warhammer 40,000: Death Masque, pg. 4
- White Dwarf 286 (US), "Heroes and Villains of the 41st Millennium: Eldrad Ulthran, Farseer of Ulthwé" by Phil Kelly
- White Dwarf 227 (US), "Chapter Approved: Eldar - Eldrad Ulthran: Farseer", pp. 73-80
- White Dwarf 172 (US), "The Eldar", pp. 5-16
- Fulgrim (Novel) by Graham McNeill
- Dawn of War Omnibus (Novel) by C. S. Goto, pp. 279-281