House Belisarius is one of the oldest and most respected of the Navis Nobilite, the noble houses of the Imperial Navigators. The House maintains a large compound in the Navigator's Quarter of the global hive city that is Terra. While the House's wealth is primarily derived from their duties as Navigators, the family has also invested its wealth in a number of mercantile concerns, including a controlling interest in the Promethium extraction and refining operations present on the Jungle World of Hyades in the Segmentum Obscurus.
House Belisarius also owns a 50% stake in the Rogue Trader starship Star of Venam. House Belisarius is governed by a noble with the title of Celestarch, who is elected from amongst the elder Navigators who owe the House allegiance. House Belisarius maintains an ancient and close relationship with the Space Wolves Chapter of Space Marines and exclusively provides Navigators for the Space Wolves' Chapter fleet.
In return, the Space Wolves gift the House with a small contingent of Space Wolves Astartes called the Wolfblade who serve as the Celestarch's bodyguard and his strong right arm when the House's interests need to be defended by military force. Because of this ancient association, House Belisarius proudly displays an image of the great Fenrisian Wolf as a part of its coat-of-arms. Unusually for an Imperial noble house, House Belisarius also maintains a close relationship with the Eldar Craftworld Ulthwé through an ancient agreement known as the Pact of Anwyn.
By ancient tradition due to the aid House Belisarius provided to the Primarch Leman Russ and his VI Legion during the Great Crusade, House Belisarius provides the Navigators for every starship used within the Space Wolves Chapter fleet. In return, the Great Wolf seconds a detachment of his Astartes known as the Wolfblade to serve as the bodyguard of House Belisarius' Celestarch. One Astartes is provided for every Navigator given by the House to the Chapter, which means the Wolfblade normally comprises approximately 24 Astartes.
In addition to their primary task of safeguarding the Celestarch's life, the Wolfblade are expected to train the House's private army and lead it into combat, serve aboard the Belisarius' commercial vessels to provide protection from pirates and raiders and undertake more covert activities assigned to them by the Celestarch to further the House's interests in the byzantine politics of Terra and the Navis Nobilite. Members of the Wolfblade, most of whom consider the assignment to be a punishment, are sworn to obey the orders of the Belisarius Celestarch as if he were the Great Wolf of their Chapter.
Pact of Anwyn
In 101.M31 the Eldar of Craftworld Ulthwé were responsible for saving House Belisarius from total destruction and the loss of all its fortune during an event currently unreported in Imperial archives. In return for this extraordinary assistance, the Celestarch of House Belisarius at the time, Jubal Belisarius, provided the Eldar of Ulthwé with 7 gold Imperial coins. Whenever an Eldar of Ulthwé presented one of these coins to a member of House Belisarius, they were required to immediately put themselves and all of the resources of the House available at the time to whatever use the Eldar requested.
Every time one of these coins was presented, it would be returned to the present Celestarch of the House on Terra, who would consider 1/7th of the ancient debt owed by Belisarius to Ulthwé to be paid. This ancient and highly unorthodox agreement is known in the Imperial chronicles as the Pact of Anwyn. House Belisarius has by necessity kept this pact secret for ten millenia, as certain fanatical Puritan elements of the Inquisition's Ordo Hereticus would exterminate the whole house on the charge of "consorting with xenos" should it become known.
Notable Members of House Belisarius
- Jubal Belisarius - Jubal was the early Celestarch of the House who forged the Pact of Anwyn with the Eldar of Ulthwé.
- Adrian Belisarius - Adrian was a former Celestarch of the House during the late 41st Millennium who was assassinated. He was the father of Gabriella Belisarius.
- Juliana Belisarius - Juliana Belisarius is the current Celestarch of House Belsarius and the successor of Adrian Bellisarius.
- Skorpaeus Belisarius - Skorpaeus Bellisarius was a member of the House who betrayed its interests as part of a failed plot to usurp Juliana Belisarius' position as the Celestarch of the House.
- Simon Belisarius - Simon Belisarius was the Navigator of the Rogue Trader vessel Star of Venam that was partially owned by the House.
- Gabriella Belisarius - Gabriella Belisarius served with the Space Wolves Chapter fleet and became friendly with many Astartes of the Chapter, including Ragnar Blackmane, a future Wolf Lord of one of the Chapter's Great Companies. Her father Adrian Belisarius, the Celestarch of the House, was assassinated.
House Belisarius is named after the Byzantine military commander Flavius Belisarius, who served the Emperor Justinian in the 6th Century A.D. Belisarius was responsible for the temporary reconquest of much of North Africa and Italy for the Eastern Roman Empire after the fall of the Western Empire in 476 A.D. and is one of a few men considered to be the "Last of the Romans" by historians of late antiquity.
- Farseer (Novel) by William King
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