Dream Cycle

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The Dream Cycle is a series of short stories and novellas by author H. P. Lovecraft[1] (1890–1937). Written between 1918 and 1932, they concern themselves with "The Dreamlands," a vast, alternate dimension that can be entered via dreams.

A map of Lovecraft's "Dreamworld" by Jack Gaughan (1967).

Geography[edit]

The Dreamlands are apparently divided into four regions:

  • The West contains the Steps of Deeper Slumber (descended via the "Cavern of Flame") and Enchanted Wood by which many enter the Dreamlands. Other points of interest include the port of Dylath-Leen, one of the Dreamlands' largest cities; the town of Ulthar "where no man may kill a cat,"[2] the coastal jungle city of Hlanith, and the desert trading capital Illarnek. Here, too, lies the land of Mnar whose gray stones are etched with signs and where rise the ruins of the great Sarnath.
  • The South, home of the isle of Oriab and the areas known as the Fantastic Realms (described in "The White Ship");
  • The East, home of Celephaïs, a city dreamt into being by its monarch Kuranes, greatest of all recorded dreamers, and the dangerous Forbidden Lands;
  • The North, location of the feared Plateau of Leng, home of man-eating spiders and the satyr-like "Men of Leng".[3]

Other locales include the Underworld, a subterranean region underneath the Dreamlands inhabited by various monsters; the Moon, accessible via a ship and inhabited by toad-like "moon-beasts" allied with Nyarlathotep; and Kadath, a huge castle atop a mountain and the domain of the "Great Ones", the gods of Earth's Dreamland.

Evidently all dreamers see the Dreamlands slightly differently, as Atal, High Priest of Ulthar, mentions that everyone has their own dreamland. In the same sentence he says the Dreamlands that many know is a "general land of vision".

Bibliography[edit]

  • Dreams of Terror and Death: The Dream Cycle of H. P. Lovecraft. Del Rey, 1985.[4][5]
Contents:

Other[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ James Turner (ed.) (1998). Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos (1st ed. ed.). New York, NY: Random House. cover blurb. ISBN 0-345-42204-X. 
  2. ^ "The Cats of Ulthar" by H. P. Lovecraft
  3. ^ "The Hound" by H. P. Lovecraft
  4. ^ The Dream Cycle of H.P. Lovecraft: Dreams of Terror and Death by H.P. Lovecraft - Reviews, Discussion, Bookclubs, Lists
  5. ^ The H.P. Lovecraft Archive