Burkhard was a massive man, standing over 6'7". Like his father he was a gifted combatant, and developed an impressive musculature to his physique. With shockingly red hair and a fiery beard, he was often called an overgrown dwarf and was said to drink like one.
He favored a warhammer in combat and wore boiled leather under chainmail more often than not. When he rode a horse, it would often be a large black charger.
The eldest of four bastards, Burkhard was raised in Capital City with token assistance from his father. Nevertheless, Wilhelm did visit his children often and Burkhard grew to be fond of his large and physically imposing father. When he came of age he attempted to enter his employ as a knight; however, Lady Claudia forbade it. Instead, he turned his attention to war against the trolls as his father had become famous for.
Burkhard worked hard to perfect his martial prowess, a skill that would later come in handy when the Spring Campaign began. He rode to his father's defense and scored several victories along with his cousin, Sir Geoffrey Albrecht.
For his valiant showing in the war Wilhelm intended to have his son and his siblings legitimized despite Claudia's protests; however, when Wilhelm suddenly died of a heart attack the choice fell to his younger brother, Hadrian, who scorned Burkhard and saw him as a rival. Courting his mother's favor, he is quoted to have told him: "call yourself whatever you wish, so long as it isn't my brother".
Burkhard in turn claimed Willow for himself and changed his surname to Thorne. His sister and brothers also gained this name, and so House Thorne was created.
Burkhard is said to have sired many bastards, though the exact number is unknown.
Although he was constantly at odds with his younger brother, Burkhard gave his life during Hadrian's War at the Battle of Lifebane in order for the Albrecht forces to rescue Agnes Albrecht, his aunt. His valiant sacrifice was said to have added a crease to Hadrian's face, born from the shame of having so mistreated his sibling.