Real Name: John Carik
Identity/Class: Human (UK) magic user
Occupation: Mystic warrior
Group Membership: Cathari
Affiliations: Blade, Crossbow, Morbius, Julia Suarez, Mariella Suarez
Deacon Frost doppelganger, Marie Laveau, Mister
generally vampires and other occult evildoers
Known Relatives: None
Aliases: Damascene, Marked one of Legend
Place of Birth: Edinburgh, Scotland
Base of Operations: Chiaroscuro
in New York City
First Appearance: Blade the Vampire-Hunter I#1 (July, 1994)
Powers/Abilities: Bible John had precognitive dreams. The sigils carved into his skin were able to protect him from vampires and other magical stuff. As the caretaker of the Chiaroscuro he was in possession of many mystical tomes and weapons. His massive knowledge of the occult from his time as a professor of antiquities was also very helpful.
Weight: 170 lbs.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#2 (fb) - BTS) - Years ago John was a professor of antiquities specialized in the occult at the Kronenberg Institute in London. On an archeological expedition to East Africa on the search for the tomb of a Knight Templar he uncovered a consummate evil which slaughtered his whole team in one night.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#1, 2 (fb) - BTS) - John escaped, by carving sigils (crosses of any kind and other signs) into his skin, but his mind was shattered by the encounter. (see comments)
Blade: Vampire Hunter I#2 (fb) - BTS) - After he had recovered he found out that he had been gifted with a limited psychic ability and vowed to use it against the dark forces in the world.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#7 (fb) - BTS/Mystic Arcana: The Book of Marvel Magic) - John joined the Cathari and became the caretaker of the Chiaroscuro in New York. (see comments)
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#1 (fb) - BTS) - Bible John was brought to the Nyman Psychiatric Clinic where he was kept because the warders thought he was crazy.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#1) - John dreamed of the Nightstalkers' last fight against Varnae and he felt that his future was somehow connected to the only survivor Blade. Suddenly the scenery changed, and he saw the future of New York ("Reality-7194"). It was consumed by fire, filled with corpses, tortured souls and it smelled of brimstone and blood and behind all this was the returning Dracula. At that moment Bible John woke up and his Dr. Goodleigh entered his cell to sedate him, but Bible John knocked him out and escaped in Goodleigh's car from the Nyman Psychiatric Clinic.
Carik went to New York where he found Blade's new home and waited in front of it for him. Blade attacked him when John told him that living a normal life wouldn't work for Blade because he was born as a vampire hunter. Blade didn't want to hear any of John's nonsense, but John gave him a Witch Compass as a house-warming gift. He explained to Blade who the creators of the item were and how it worked before leaving him.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#2) - Bible John visited Blade in his home to talk with him again. He was happy that Blade had used the Witch Compass and explained that he gave it to Blade to see if he was ready to prevent the resurrection of Dracula and the destruction of New York which John had seen in a vision. He told Blade about his past and his last vision and asked Blade to become his partner. Together they searched with the help of the Witch Compass and a city map for the place where Dracula would manifest next and it led them to the "Body Hammer" club. Inside the club Bible John realized too late that they were surrounded by vampire thralls. After a short fight against the thralls Dracula attacked Blade, and Bible John was held back by two thralls.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#3) - John was still held by a thrall (colored like Thorne's thrall Mister Angel which seems wrong) and was then attacked by Dracula, but the crosses on John's body burnt his hands and Dracula had to let him go. The thrall that held John returned and attempted to stab him, but Blade saved John and then freed him from his bonds. John asked what Blade's plan was to stop Thorne and Dracula, and the vampire hunter wanted to use running water which John knew could be used as a barrier or to burn them like with acid rain. Thorne and Dracula escaped while Blade and Bible John stood under the running sprinklers.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#4) - John called Blade at home and asked him to come over to his place. Blade was impressed by the Chiaroscuro and John revealed that he had lied about the Cathari dying out centuries ago (see comments) and that a few were still living in hiding. Bible John changed the topic to the tourist slayings in L.A. and showed Blade in the Grimorium Verum (a Catalogue of the Arsenal of Darkness) an image of the sigil for "Ethereal Admission" which could open thresholds to other realms. The same sigil found at the murder scene in Los Angeles and John was sure that it was connected to Thorne's boasting about Varnae's return. Bible John gave Blade a Cathari Katanna and then went with Blade to Los Angeles.
In Los Angeles John used the Witch Compass which led him and Blade to the exact center of the occult and geographic center of the triangle. Except for a few punks nothing was there and John was surprised until the punks, led by Trinity Cabranes, attacked them. Cabranes knocked out Bible John by tossing a stone at his head and threatened to kill him if Blade didn't surrender, which Blade did in the process. John and Blade were handcuffed and brought to Marie Laveau, and Trinity kept holding a knife at John's throat while watching the ceremony for Varnae's return.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#5) - Handcuffed, John tried to persuade Trinity Cabranes that she was just being used by the vampires, and, after awhile, she believed him and gave Blade his sword. When Blade started to get weaker, John told him that the air was poisoned by the gas leaking from the pipe Blade was cuffed to, which Blade used to his advantage by blowing up the building. Bible John hated Blade's plan and was surprised when Blade didn't follow the resurrected Varnae and his allies. They left the building and John asked Blade to get him out of the handcuffs.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#7) - John wrote his November 12th entry of his journal and then went through the Chiaroscuro with a candle-light. Suddenly somebody knocked at his door and John opened it. The visitor was Deacon Frost (an imposter, clone or doppelganger) who beat up John because he didn't want to tell him where the Amulet of Octaviano was. Together with small demons, "Deacon Frost" tortured Bible John further. Before he passed out, John sent out a psychic cry for help, which brought Blade to the Chiaroscuro. The false Frost fought Blade and left when he coincidentally found the amulet he needed. Blade brought Bible John to St. Jude's Hospital where he learned from a police officer that John was an escapee from a psychic ward.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#8) - While lying in hospital bed ,Bible John once again had a vision of Dracula and this time he saw Frank Drake and Hannibal King telling him that they were trapped between life and death (the were two portions of the resurrected Dracula). Blade visited John together with Dr. Michael Morbius and John got the chance to give Blade a shred of Frost's jacket he tied to the Witch Compass to find Frost. He told Blade about Frost's plan to bring a demon to Earth and that millions would die if Frost succeeded. Blade and Morbius successfully found and stopped "Frost" thanks to John's helpful advice. Meanwhile at St. Jude's Hospital John once again saw Drake and King alive in a vision.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#9) - Blade broke into St. Jude's Hospital through a window and freed Bible John whose room was guarded by policemen. He then brought him back to the Chiaroscuro where John told Blade that Frank Drake and Hannibal King were still alive. The Vampz, two vampires sent by Marie Laveau to kill Bible John because she saw in her cards that he was her preordained adversary (the tainted cards told her that John is the true Damascene, the Marked One of Legend), followed them. Blade stopped them both from killing Bible John. Later that night John tried to tell Blade the truth about Drake and King, but he was still too weak. While Blade was asleep, Crossbow came to Bible John to save him.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#9 - BTS) - Crossbow injected an extract from his time into Bible John's bloodstream.
(Blade: Vampire Hunter I#10) - Again John had a vision of Dracula destroying New York and woke up screaming. Morbius sedated him and before John passed out again he told Blade about the 13th Floor in the Chrysler Building. Morbius then told Blade that John was on his way to full recovery. He thought that it could've something to do with the substance he had found in John's blood. Morbius continued to monitor Bible John while Blade went to the Chrysler Building. Later that night Bible John was on his feet again and visited Julia and Mariella Suarez at Blade's new home to talk with them.
(Mystic Arcana: The Book of Marvel Magic) - Bible John and Crossbow helped Blade free King and Drake from their current condition, presumably preventing the vision that originally drew John to Blade.
(Civil War: Battle Damage Report) - Tony Stark listed Bible John's status as undetermined on his Initiative list.
Comments: Created by Ian Edginton (writer), Douglas Wheatley (pencils), Chris Ivy (inks).
Crazy or not, here I come!
It is unknown at which point Bible John became a member of the Cathari or when he carved the crosses and other sigils into his skin. After the incident in Africa he had a breakdown and then found out about his psychic abilities. He could've joined the Cathari around that time (who could've found him or were found by him). The carving could've been a result to his work as the Chiaroscuro's guardian in New York. Outside the Chiaroscuro he was easily mistaken for a loon and incarcerated in a looney bin. This doesn't necessarily have to be the truth. Perhaps he was the self-proclaimed guardian of the Chiaroscuro which he found due to his knowledge about occult stuff. The Cathari were history or at least John never met one personally.
In some modern fiction it had been suggested that the Cathari were the protectors of the Holy Grail. This would also explain John's search for the tomb of Knight Templar (BTW remember Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade). Maybe he was already involved with the Cathari at that time or it could explain how he got involved with the Cathari afterwards.
AFAIK Bible John never told Blade that the Cathari died out centuries ago, but in Blade: Vampire Hunter I#4 Bible John was sorry for that lie. It is possible that John told Blade the historical version of the Cathari's destruction.
Bible John had a small entry in the Marvel Knights Encyclopedia. Most of the questions above were answered in his entry in Mystic Arcana: The Book of Marvel Magic where Bible John has an entry too.
Chiaroscuro & Cathari
Chiaroscuro is an element in art defined as a bold contrast between light and dark. The word itself is Italian and means "light dark." It was developed over the 15th and 16th centuries in Italy and Flanders.
Cathari comes from the Greek word katharos which means pure. The name was used for members of a dualistic religious movement in the Middle Ages (beginning in the 10th century) which originated from the Manicheans. They believed in a conflict between a good principle that reigned over spiritual world and an evil principle that reigned over the physical. They believed somebody could only ascend by absolutely surrendering the flesh to the spirit. In Catharism existed two classes: Credentes (believers) and the Perfecti (their priests). The sect existed throughout Western Europe and had its central in Languedoc in France.
Cathari were Christians, but parts of their religion -- like Jesus was just a spirit and his body and crucifixion were an illusion -- were too far away for normal folks and the higher-ups in Rome. For the Catholic Church they were a heretical Christian sect or worse, a non-Christian religion. In Christianity this normally means capital punishment for all members and this is exactly what happened to them as long as they existed. Catharis were arrested, suppressed and hunted down between 1147 and 1321, which marked the execution of the last Cathari Perfecti. Other similar movements lived on and were fundamental for the creation of early Protestant sects like the Hussites.
They were peaceful extremists hated by Catholic leaders. If you want to learn more about them search for Cathari on the net.
Profile by Markus Raymond
Bible John has no known connections to
The Cathari were an ancient order of warrior scholars. Once they were an army against the forces of evil, but over centuries of fighting evil only a handful of the Cathari remained. After the destruction of their old Chiaroscuro by the hand of the Sons of Set they relocated their library and all the other things they had collected to New York. Bible John, a former professor became the new Chiaroscuro's guardian. A few Cathari were still alive, but kept living in hiding.
--Blade: Vampire Hunter I#1 (Blade: Vampire Hunter I#1-5, 7-10
It was an annex to the Cathari's Academy of Light and Shade. After the old Chiaroscuro in Calcutta was torched by the Sons of Set it was rebuilt in NYC where a whole block was hollowed out in the 1940s for this purpose. Many artifacts (like the Amulet of Octaviano or the Witch Compass), tomes (like the Grimorium Verum), weapons (Cathari Katannas, etc.) and captured enemies (some where kept in a hard, transparent substance) were stored inside the Chiaroscuro.
--Blade: Vampire Hunter I#4 (Blade: Vampire Hunter I#4, 7, 9
Thousand years ago it was created by a Chinese psychic. It worked like a compass, but instead of being drawn to the true north it was drawn to negative energy. For centuries it was in possession of the Cathari until Bible John gave it to Blade who trusted it enough to use it to find Thorne' Aceldama factory. Together with Bible John the Witch Compass was later used to find Dracula and the place where Varnae was resurrected. He later used it to find the extratemporal Clave. Blade also used it to find the false Deacon Frost by tying a shred of Frost's jacket to it.
--Blade: Vampire Hunter I#1 (Blade: Vampire Hunter I#1, 2, 4, Midnight Sons Unlimited#8, [Blade: Vampire Hunter I#8]
images: (without ads)
Blade: Vampire Hunter I#4, Cover (main image)
#2, p9 (head shot)
#4, p4, pan2 (Bible John is dancing in the rain!)
#4, p5 (Chiaroscuro)
#1, p12, pan2 (Witch Compass)
Blade: Vampire Hunter I#1-2 (July-August, 1994) - Ian Edginton (writer), Douglas Wheatley (pencils), Chris Ivy (inks), Chris Cooper (editor)
Blade: Vampire Hunter I#3-5 (September-November, 1994) - Ian Edginton (writer), Douglas Wheatley (pencils), Steve Moncuse (inks), Chris Cooper (editor)
Midnight Sons Unlimited#8 (January, 1995) - Dan Abnett (writer), Leonardo Manco, Tomm Coker & Duncan Rouleau (pencils), Leonardo Manco, Larry Ross & Mike Worley (inks), Evan Skolnick (editor)
Blade: Vampire Hunter I#7-8 (January-February, 1995) - Ian Edginton (writer), Douglas Wheatley (pencils), Steve Moncuse (inks), Chris Cooper (editor)
Blade: Vampire Hunter I#9-10 (March-April, 1995) - Terry Kavanagh (writer), Douglas Wheatley (pencils), Steve Moncuse (inks), Chris Cooper (editor)
Civil War: Battle Damage Report (2007)
Mystic Arcana: The Book of Marvel Magic (2007) - David Sexton, Jeff Christiansen, many others (writers)
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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