- "Mighty is Sigmar, who saves a Dwarf king from dishonour. How can I reward him? A hammer of war, a hammer of Iron, which fell from the sky with two tongues of fire. From the Forge of the Gods. Worked by Runesmiths, Ghal Maraz its name, the Splitter of Skulls."
- —Saga of Sigmar Heldenhammer
Ghal Maraz ('skull-splitter' in the original Khazalid) is the name of the legendary warhammer once wielded by the founder of the Empire of Man; Sigmar Heldenhammer. The mighty weapon was gifted to the young Unberogen prince in -15 IC, when a young Sigmar and his warband of Unberogen warriors rescued Dwarf High King Kurgan Ironbeard from his captivity by Orc Warlord Vagraz Headstomper and his small army of Greenskin warriors. In addition to its practical use, the warhammer was also a symbol for the treaty of friendship between the Dwarfs and the Unberogen tribe that lead to the spread of iron-smithing, literacy, and engineering among the Tribes of Men.
Ghal Maraz is one of the greatest weapons ever made, rivaling even the great Ancestor Weapons of old. It has even been suggested that the weapon possesses some form of sentience, favoring some users over others. What is known is that the weapon has never failed its wielder in battle.
When Sigmar vacated the Imperial Throne in the year of 50 IC, it is unclear whether he left his Warhammer upon the throne along with his crown, or whether he took it with him. Historical texts differ on this point: some say that the Emperor left the Warhammer on the throne, others that he took it with him, and still others that the Dwarfs returned it to a future Emperor some years later, saying that Sigmar had left it with them on his journey to the East. Despite the historical controversy, both the Cult of Sigmar and the Emperor insist that the mighty warhammer in the possession of Karl Franz is the original.
- The Life of Sigmar (Background Book) pg. 6 - 18, 19 - 22, 23 - 34, 35 - 39, 40 - 48, 49 - 56, 57 - 82, 83 - 86, 87 - 98
- Heldenhammer (Novel) by Graham McNeill
- Empire (Novel) by Graham McNeill
- God-King (Novel) by Graham MceNill
- Let the Great Axe Fall (Short Story) by Graham McNeill
- Birth of a Legend (Short Story) by Gav Thorpe