Schattenjäger is a German word that translates literally as "Shadow Hunter". It is the title used by a German family of supernatural investigators. The Ritter family of Bavaria is descended from Inquisitors, Jesuits, and Witch-hunters, and claims that some ancient charge to "serve the light" has shaped its destiny.
The line started about 1210, the date of the first entry in the prayer book kept in the Schloss Ritter chapel. The family's patron saint is St. George, and it is in posession of a talisman of ancient design, which is alleged to have protective powers. That was until 1693 when Gunter Ritter lost it to the witch Tetelo. Since then, the glamour of the family line waned.
Although it has broadened its outlook over the centuries, it still strives to achieve its mission of hunting down and destroying supernatural evil. In 1993, the last German member of the family, Wolfgang Ritter, died. He passed the family castle and title to his nephew, Gabriel Knight, an American, who ws self-ordained Schattenjäger and retrieved the talisman.