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Not to be confused with H [10-60] Heretics.
"Heresy" redirects here. For the quest, see H [40-70] Heresy!.

Heretics or apostates are those believing in or practicing religious heresy, holding beliefs and opinions at odds with that of their former religion or group, and therefore opposed to a set of doctrines and teachings. In fact, heresy is any belief, practice, blasphemy, act, or theory that is strongly at variance with established beliefs, traditions, or customs in a society, in particular the accepted beliefs of a religious organization.

Present among all the races, cults, and societies, those accused of being heretics by their actions and beliefs are denigrated or treated as pariahs by their people, and subsequently rejected, exiled, or eliminated. This is mainly the case in the mortal plane, but it is also applied in the Shadowlands, and most certainly in the other cosmic planes.

The inquisitors are mainly responsible for tracking down the heretics in order to arrest and interrogate them, by torture if necessary. Some extremist organizations, such as the Scarlet Crusade and the Twilight's Hammer, devote themselves to their eradication, going so far as to throw them into cages and prisons where they are treated like animals, before being cruelly executed.

First War[]

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Third War[]

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Years before the Scourging of Lordaeron, the necromancer Kel'Thuzad began to preach his heretical "religion" through Lordaeron, promising immortality, power, and an ideal society free of all the burdens. Many were those who consequently forsook the Light, willingly selling their soul to the Lich King, and joined the Cult of the Damned.[2]

During the Third War, a group of wretched and heretical fallen priests[3] appeared. They once counted as the most devout amongst the clergy of Lordaeron. But, after years of constant war and suffering, they had lost their sense of the Holy Light. Now, they existed only to spread their frustration and negativity to their fellow men and women.[3]

They appeared as a category of creeps and counted Fallen Priests, Deceivers, and Heretics among their ranks. They were modeled after the Acolytes of the Scourge.[4]

The Sunwell Trilogy[]

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World of Warcraft[]

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  • The Kirin Tor and their magi have been considered heretics for centuries by the Church of the Light who has never been fond of their methods, but let them continue to exist because they don't practice dark magic and are somewhere necessary.[6]
  • The warlocks and their dark arts are considered as pariahs that must operate in the shadows of polite society[7] in order to practice in secret their dark arts within hidden enclaves, so that they can escape the prejudice of the public.[8]
  • Jonathan Carevin and his family have dedicated themselves to fight the undead and worgen of Duskwood in order to repel the evil and heresy in the region.[9]
  • The Centaur Pariah was considered a heretic and exiled by his centaur brethren for his beliefs.[10]
  • The priests and paladins of the Scarlet Crusade were once members of the Church and the Silver Hand. However, they became corrupt and extremist as a result of their fanatical dedication to eradicate the undead, and those who oppose them.[11]

The Burning Crusade[]

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Mists of Pandaria[]

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Battle for Azeroth[]

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  • Ages ago in the Shadowlands, Zovaal betrayed his fellow Eternal Ones, attempting to steal their sigils in order to access forbidden knowledge. He was then condemned for his heretical actions by being imprisoned for eternity in the Maw.[40]
  • In Revendreth, those who claimed Denathrius to be responsible for the anima drought were considered heretics by Lord Chamberlain.[41] The latter is also at the head of a Venthyr Inquisition, which torments the souls under their care and hunts down those who oppose Denathrius.
  • The broker named Firim, who led an expedition to search for the Sepulcher of the First Ones as a member of Cartel Al, was labeled a madman and heretic by the other brokers after the mission ended with his disappearance.[42] All his reports were also dismissed as the writings of a lunatic, heretic, and criminal.[43][44][45]


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In the RPG[]

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Heretics of the Holy Light

Scarlet Crusade and Argent Dawn members looking at each other.

The Heretics of the Holy Light include the Argent Dawn and the Scarlet Crusade. These are religious groups that altered the holy light philosophy and splintered from the Church of the Holy Light.

Of the two splinter factions of the Church of the Holy Light — the Argent Dawn and the Scarlet Crusade — the Argent Dawn is by far more palatable to the Church. Still, both technically go against the church's established teachings to blaze new paths.[48]

The Argent Dawn believes the church’s old methods of dealing with evil no longer suffice. Evil constantly changes and refines its methods, and good must likewise change. The Scarlet Crusade takes this notion one huge step forward. The crusade rationalizes that evil has no restraints on its tactics, and neither should good if it expects to triumph. While both groups go against the teachings of the Church of the Holy Light, the church takes no direct action against them. This lack of activity on the church's part derives from its unique structure. While it is the dominant faith among humans, the Holy Light is not a religion so much as it is a philosophy. The "church" is a network of the faithful that exists to bring worshipers together and provide new members with guidance. Adherents to the path of the Holy Light don't attend services once a week or build edifices to celebrate their philosophy (with a few exceptions). Plus, the Church of the Holy Light — and its adherents — have larger problems to worry about.[48]

In addition, while their doctrine might be radical, none can deny that the Argent Dawn and the Scarlet Crusade accomplish what they set out to do. The Argent Dawn has become the preeminent enemy of evil in some areas, and the Scarlet Crusade deals blow after vicious blow to the Scourge. While their methods may be questionable (particularly in the case of the Scarlet Crusade), their accomplishments dissuade most faithful of the Holy Light from interfering.[48]

Domains: Priests of the Holy Light who serve the Scarlet Crusade can gain access to the Crusader, Healing and War domains (but not Protection).[48]

Notes and trivia[]


This article or section includes speculation, observations or opinions possibly supported by lore or by Blizzard officials. It should not be taken as representing official lore.

The Heretics that could be found in Warcraft III on Kalimdor right after the arrival of the Horde and Alliance may have represented Twilight's Hammer members.

See also[]


  1. ^ The Story So Far (Warcraft III)
  2. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 30
  3. ^ a b Blizzard Entertainment. Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos Manual, 82. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ Sunwell Trilogy Ultimate Edition, full color Prologue
  6. ^ Road to Damnation
  7. ^ Visiting Warlock#Quotes
  8. ^ A Warlock [30] You Have Served Us Well
  9. ^ A [10-30] Worgen in the Woods
  10. ^ N [48D] The Pariah's Instructions
  11. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 103
  12. ^ N [60D] The Archivist
  13. ^ Draenei Artificer#Quotes
  14. ^ Blood of the Highborne
  15. ^ World of Warcraft: Illidan, chapter 10
  16. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 162 - 163
  17. ^ Inv scroll 02 [Illidari Lord Balthas' Instructions]
  18. ^ Warcraft: Shaman
  19. ^ A IconSmall Worgen MaleIconSmall Worgen Female [1-30] Preparations
  20. ^ H [10-30] Faces of Evil
  21. ^ Shadow Warden#Quotes
  22. ^ Skumblade Seadragon#Quotes
  23. ^ N [45WQ] The Feltotem
  24. ^ N [45WQ] Rise of the Fallen
  25. ^ N [45WQ] Dirge of the Dead
  26. ^ N [10-45] Breaking the Bonespeakers
  27. ^ N [10-45] Regal Remains
  28. ^ N Priest [45] Onslaught Envoy
  29. ^ N Priest [45] Apostate Liberation
  30. ^ World of Warcraft: The Magazine Issue 4, pg. 84
  31. ^ A Thousand Years of War Part Three: Shadow & Light, pg. 37
  32. ^ H [10-60] Heretics
  33. ^ H [10-60] Partners in Heresy
  34. ^ H [10-59B] Rituals of Heresy
  35. ^ H [10-60] The Temple of Rezan
  36. ^ H [40-70] Heresy!
  37. ^ Jin'alun#Quotes
  38. ^ A [30-60] Archived Knowledge
  39. ^ A [50] Purging the Defilers
  40. ^ N [60] Voices of the Eternal
  41. ^ N [58-60] On The Road Again
  42. ^ World of Warcraft: Grimoire of the Shadowlands and Beyond, pg. 160 - 161
  43. ^ Inv misc clipboard01 [Expedition Report A37J - Part 1]
  44. ^ Inv misc clipboard01 [Expedition Report A37J - Part 2]
  45. ^ Inv misc clipboard01 [Expedition Report A37J - Part 4]
  46. ^ a b N [15-30G3] Adversarial Blood
  47. ^ Inv mace 1h arakkoa c 01 [Beakbreaker of Terokk]
  48. ^ a b c d Dark Factions, pg. 87
  49. ^ Chris Metzen on Twitter (2013-12-20).​ “love Argent, hate Scarlet....” (when asked about the Church's position on the topic)