The Order of the Broken Sword were a Knightly Order formed in 1707 in the wake of the Orc invasion of Gorbad Ironclaw. The Order started out as a band of local freelance knights led by Dott Barthos, gathered together to go after a marauding band of Chaos Beastmen. In recent months, these Beastmen had terrorized and pillaged several local farms. Their last raid left three entire families slaughtered, a missing farmer's daughter and three mutilated cows. Something had to be done. The knights tracked the Beastmen through the twisted forest to their camp and then readied themselves for battle.
During the attack, Dott Barthos squared off against the leader of the foul beasts - Sizlak Grimhoof. In the ensuing battle with the vile Beastman, Dott Barthos was grievously wounded. With the last of his remaining strength, Barthos launched a ferocious attack. His sword swung in a wide arc, smashing against the head of Sizlak Grimhoof. The blow sheared the Beastman's skull clean in half, though breaking Barthos' sword in the process.
With the Grimhoof defeated, Dott Barthos was filled with righteous fury. Pressing the advantage, Dott and his men pursued the fleeing Beastmen through the woods, eventually dispatching them all. In the aftermath of the skirmish, with his broken sword clutched to his chest, Dott Barthos finally succumbed to his terrible wounds. On that day, the surviving knights formed the Order of the Broken Sword, dedicated to stomping out evil and protecting the subjects of the Empire. Dott Barthos's Broken Sword and Grimhoof's cloven skull remain in the main hall of their Chapter house to this very day.
- Warhammer Armies: The Empire (6th Edition), p.12
- Uniforms and Heraldry of the Empire, p.63