Do you like this video? Tau tau , known in their own language as the T'au, are a young, humanoid and technologically-advanced intelligent race native to the Eastern Fringes of the Milky Way Galaxy who are fighting to expand their interstellar empire and extend a philosophical concept they call the " Greater Good " Tau'va in the Tau Lexicon to all the intelligent species of the galaxy.
The Tau claim to be a peaceful race when possible, asking if others will join their cause voluntarily instead of fighting against them. However, if their peaceful overtures are refused, the Tau may well decide to conquer a planet and add it to their growing interstellar empire for the Greater Good, searing the flesh from the bones of anyone who stands against their benign intentions.
Tau society is divided into a number of castes, each responsible for managing a specific aspect of their society. The Tau's central motivating ideal is that everyone in their empire regardless of their species will work for the collective betterment of everyone else, an almost mystical philosophy they call the Greater Good.
The Tau are the central figures of the T'au Empire , an interstellar polity which is composed of several different intelligent species, primarily the Kroot of Pech , the Vespids of the world of Vespid and the nomadic Nicassar , though there are now several human Tau Septs derived from conquered Imperial humans or humans who voluntarily joined the T'au Empire because they were impressed by the concept of the Greater Good.
These people are known as Gue'vesa in the Tau Lexicon and they are considered amongst the most vile of Traitors and Heretics within the Imperium of Man. The Tau are a relatively young race it has been only 6, Terran years since Imperial Inquisitors first noted that the Tau had only just mastered fire and the wheel , and they have evolved rapidly over the past few millennia.
Unlike other young intelligent races of the galaxy, the Tau have made remarkable leaps in technology and now represent a real threat to Imperial domination in their region of the galaxy. M41 Map of the T'au Empire at the time of the Fifth Sphere Expansion after the opening of the Great Rift The exact date of the founding of the Tau Empire in the Imperial Calendar is unclear, however the way in which the Tau were united as a species is a well-known tale.
What is known is that only 6, standard years ago, in the 35th Millennium, an Adeptus Mechanicus Explorator fleet had discovered the Tau homeworld of T'au and determined that its population of sentient xenos were a primitive people at the Stone Age level of development who had only just mastered fire. They have developed very rapidly as a space-faring species. Earlier in their history, the Tau were a culture built upon warring tribes.
During this time, the Tau's legends tell of the first appearance of the Ethereals at the city of Fio'taun. The fortress city of Fio'taun was under assault by the Tau warriors from the plains. Though negotiation had been attempted, the fierce plains warriors would settle for nothing less than the annhilliation of the city of Fio'taun. For five long Tau years the inhabitants held off the savage assaults with their thick walls and plentiful cannon.
However, disease and starvation began to take their toll. As the tide of the siege turned, two mysterious Tau appeared. One made his way into the camp of the plains Tau, exuding a quiet authority that no Tau was able to resist. Soon, the leader of the plains warriors was persuaded to parley with the settled Tau of Fio'taun.
Similarly, the other mysterious Tau made his way deep into the fortress. Within a few short hours, the gates stood wide open, and the Tau of both sides stood ready to talk. The Ethereals spoke of the importance of peace and understanding between all Tau. They described a Greater Good that each Tau must strive towards. The besiegers and the besieged quickly agreed with the Ethereals and a truce was reached.
Across the world of T'au, Ethereals emerged, each with the same quiet authority and message of harmony and cooperation. With the Tau united, they were able to rapidly develop their civilization's technology, ultimately attaining faster-than-light spacefaring capabilities. The Tau Empire soon expanded its borders through a series of so-called Sphere Expansions. The Tau Empire has gone through 3 phases of expansion as of the turn of the 42nd Millennium. These phases are marked by Tau military campaigns during which nearby worlds are colonised, conquered, or sometimes peacefully persuaded to accept the Greater Good through diplomacy and a manifest demonstration of the benefits provided by advanced Tau technology.
Therefore, apart from the star systems directly colonised by the Tau, which are called Septs , the Tau Empire also includes the worlds and star systems belonging to the species of the Kroot , Vespid , and the Nicassar.
It is currently unknown if the Demiurg are full members of the Empire, allies, or mere trading partners. The Tau Empire is composed of over twenty fully-developed Septs and around one hundered settled worlds, but the exact number and most of their names are unknown to the Imperium. Also, more recently, some worlds and star systems of the Imperium of Man have been conquered by the forces of the Tau, while a handful have seceded from the Imperium and pledged their allegiance to the Tau Empire.
At some point, the Tau sent an expeditionary force to the Imperial planet Malbrede where they came into conflict with the Ultramarines Space Marine Chapter in However, the planet proved to be a cursed Tomb World when the fighting of the Tau and the Ultramarines awakened the sleeping Necrons from their tomb beneath the surface.
In an effort to combat this terrible threat to both races, the Tau and the Ultramarines combined their forces to defeat the Necrons. Once the conflict was over, the Tau were allowed to evacuate their forces by the Ultramarines Chapter Master Marneus Calgar who proceeded to destroy Malbrede through the use of an Exterminatus order. On that Ocean World , the Space Wolves' Drop Pods landed deep in the oceans where their occupants, their Power Armour altered by Space Wolf Techmarines to operate in undersea environments, made a move to engage their enemy.
On the surface, the battle was fought between the two sides with an equally deadly conflict erupting in the depths of the sea between the Space Wolves and Tau Battlesuits. Thunderhawk gunships armed with torpedoes, prop-bombs and missiles were used to great effect against the Tau's Hammerhead tanks and Manta gunships.
Ultimately, the Space Wolves proved to be the victor in the conflict, though hundreds of Tau and Space Wolf corpses floated to the surface. With their mission complete, the Space Wolves made the long trek back to land across the sea bed. The campaign was ultimately unsuccessful for the Imperial forces due to the high amount of casualties taken and Taros remained in the possession of the Tau, who renamed it T'ros. The conflict essentially ended in a stalemate, as the Imperium was forced to conclude its military offensive early to deal with the encroaching Tyranid threat while the Tau sought to begin diplomatic negotiations with the Imperium to show humanity the benefits to be had by accepting the Greater Good.
Members of the Tau Water Caste had established trade agreements with Imperial worlds on the frontier of the Tau Empire, near the Damocles Gulf region of the Ultima Segmentum in the galactic east, and exchanges of goods and technology were common. Alarmed by the threat of alien contamination, the Administratum readied a suitable response and almost a century later, the Damocles Crusade smashed into Tau space, destroying several outlying settlements and pushing deep into the Tau Empire.
When the Imperial fleet reached the Tau Sept world of Dal'yth Prime, however, the Crusade ground to a bloody stalemate as the formidable numbers and high technology of the Tau and their Kroot allies thwarted every attempt to capture the world or its star system. Many months of terrible fighting ensued with nothing gained on either side. M41 the Crusade's commanders eventually agreed to requests from the Tau Water Caste for peace talks. The negotiations were successful and the Imperial fleet withdrew from Tau space unmolested, primarily due to the impending approach of the Tyranid Hive Fleet Behemoth.
Or, depending on the source, the Damocles Gulf Crusade was ended in M41 due to the emergent threat of Hive Fleet Kraken to the Imperium. The Tyranids of Hive Fleet Gorgon were exceptional for their ability to quickly adapt on a biological level to new circumstances of battle, such as evolving immunities to the Tau's energy-based weaponry. This rapid pace of defensive adaptation may have been unique to the Tyranid breeds of Hive Fleet Gorgon, or it may have been a response to conflict with the Tau, who are also a highly adaptable species, but on a technological rather than biological level.
M41, albeit after both humanity and the Tau lost several colony worlds to the rapacious Tyranids. Tau Physiology A Tau Fire Warrior in full kit The Tau's physiology is closely tied to their society, with the Tau of each caste effectively being a subspecies of the larger Tau race.
This was initially a result of adaptation and evolution to suit the different environments each group of the proto-Tau species found themselves in, although interbreeding between the castes was later forbidden by the Ethereals. The Tau are humanoid in shape, although they have hoofed feet and four-digit hands three fingers and one thumb.
Their skin is grey-blue although this can vary in pigmentation between Tau colony worlds , rough in texture, leathery, and exudes almost no moisture. Their faces are flat, wide around the eyes, with an "I"-shaped slit running from the center of the forehead to where a human's nose would be. Tau vision is considered slightly superior to that of humans - their visual spectrum extends a little more into the ultraviolet and infrared wavelengths. However their pupils do not dilate, giving poorer depth perception and providing slower vision focusing reflexes than humans.
The olfactory organs of a Tau are inside the mouth. Physical strength and size varies between the Tau castes with the Fire Caste being the strongest of their kind, roughly the size and slightly weaker than an average baseline human because the Tau homeworld has gravity slightly weaker than that of Terra.
Only two female Tau have ever been illustrated. The first, Commander Shadowsun , appeared to have a more human face than male Tau; being smoother and sleeker with larger eyes, a nose-like facial feature and a "Y" shaped facial slit. It is not known, however, whether Shadowsun is representative of all female Tau. The second known Tau female, the subject of an Imperial dissection by the Magi of the Adeptus Mechanicus , had the facial characteristics of a male Tau.
The Tau do not possess psykers indeed, their minds barely register in the Warp at all and as a result have little knowledge of the Immaterium beyond its existence. This gives them some level of resistance to Warp-based powers affecting the mind, but it offers little, if any, protection against physically-manifested offensive psychic powers. They are largely unaware of the perils of the Immaterium and for this reason the Tau have conducted research into the Warp on Medusa V , however, the conclusion was reached that further research was unfeasible, and that "the Warp is no place for the Greater Good and is best left to those foolhardy races who cannot pull back from that terrible realm.
It is believed by Imperial scholars that through this organ the Ethereals exert a pheromone-based or latent psychic control over the other Tau castes to keep them focused on the Greater Good, but this is mere speculation, and no evidence of this has yet been found. Due to their notable absence of psychic ability, the Tau have no equivalent to the Navigators of the Imperium, limiting their Warp jumps to short-distance "shallow jumps" or "Warp dives.
Tau warriors receive only limited training in the arts of close combat, usually depending on Kroot mercenaries to fight in the horrible melees so common in 41st Millennium battles. However, due to their superior range of vision in the electromagnetic spectrum and a predilection for patience, the Tau have proven themselves to be extremely efficient sharpshooters with the ranged plasma weapons they rely upon.
The Tau tend to look upon other intelligent races as backwards or misguided. Before the commencement of hostilities they almost always try to reason with their opponents and establish some kind of agreement that will make military force unnecessary. Noted exceptions to this policy are Tau battles with the Orks and the Forces of Chaos , with whom the Tau have little to no diplomatic relations. This is due to the fact that the Tau see no way to reason with them, and do not want them in their empire.
In Tau society, every person is viewed as an essential part of the whole society. Social standing is judged primarily by a being's standing within a caste of the Tau, with 'La being the lowest Shas'la: Water Bureaucrat and 'O being the highest Shas'O: The castes are as follows: They average as tall as or slightly shorter than an average human , and are generally muscular.
This comes from the Fire Caste's origin on the plains of T'au , the Tau homeworld, where they survived as hunters and warriors. Tau from the world of Vior'la tend to have slightly greater muscle mass because of the increased gravity of Viorla.
Earth Fio -- The Earth Caste is composed not only of laborers and technicians, but also artisans, scientists and engineers. They are usually credited with the significant leaps in technology that the Tau Empire has enjoyed. The members of the Earth Caste form the foundations upon which the Tau Empire is built. The inhabitants of this caste are generally short and stout of build.
They are tasked with seeking and maintaining diplomatic relations with the other species of the Tau Empire, as well as maintaining the ease of communication and cooperation between the other castes.
The Water Caste are generally taller and slimmer than other Tau, and favor diplomatic training and social grace over confrontation or combat. They are more capable in communicating in the languages of other intelligent races than most other Tau.
From the time when the Tau discovered the Imperium of Man, there are several accounts where Water Caste ambassadors were dispatched to Imperial worlds, and those worlds were turned over to the Greater Good without a fight to become new Tau Septs.
The Tau of the Air Caste are even taller and more slender than the Water Caste, with long, skinny appendages and hollow bones. These traits are attributed to their lives lived mostly in low to zero-gravity starships and space stations.