The following fictional celestial bodies
figure prominently in the Cthulhu Mythos
stories of H. P. Lovecraft
and other writers. Many of these astronomical bodies have parallels in the real universe, but are often renamed in the mythos and given fictitious characteristics. In addition to the celestial places created by Lovecraft, the mythos draws from a number of other sources, including the works of August Derleth
, Ramsey Campbell
, Lin Carter
, Brian Lumley
, and Clark Ashton Smith
- Name. The name of the celestial body appears first.
- Description. A brief description follows.
- References. Lastly, the stories in which the celestial body makes a significant appearance or otherwise receives important mention appear below the description. A simple two-letter code is used—the key to the codes is found here. If a code appears in bold, this means that the story introduces the celestial body.
that revolves around seven stars
beyond Xoth. It is inhabited by metallic brains, wise with the ultimate secrets of the universe. According to Friedrich von Junzt's Unaussprechlichen Kulten
dwells or is imprisoned on this world (though other legends differ in this regard).
from which came Zhar
and his "twin" Lloigor
One of the seven stars of the Pleiades
. On its fourth planet is the Great Library of Celaeno, which houses stone tablets containing secrets stolen from the Great Old Ones
and Elder Gods
. Professor Laban Shrewsbury
spent some time here, transcribing the library's knowledge in his notebook—a manuscript that would later be known as the Celaeno Fragments
name for the planet Saturn
. It was the home of the god Tsathoggua
before he came to Earth, though several of his relatives, including his uncle, Hziulquoigmnzhah
, still dwell there.
Glyu-Uho (or Glyu-Vho or K'Lu-Vho) is the name for Betelgeuse
(the language of Mu
), and is the star
where the Elder Gods
came from to battle the Great Old Ones
(though it may actually be the place where a gateway leads to Elysia
, the dimension where the Elder Gods are thought to live).
Haddath (also Haddoth or perhaps Urakhu) is a fiery planet, possibly found near the "eye" of the constellation Hydra
, and is believed to be inhabited by the chthonians
is thought to have once dwelt here.
Ktynga (or Norby's comet
) is the name of a bluish comet
that is currently near the star Arcturus
. The comet is unusually hot and has strange properties, such as the ability to travel faster than light.
On the surface of the comet is a huge building wherein dwells the being Fthaggua and his servants, the fire vampires. Fthaggua and his minions can guide the comet to travel between the stars, and will visit our solar system four centuries from now.
A mysterious celestial body located past Yuggoth
?) on the edge of the solar system.
Kythanil (or Kythamil or Kthymil) is a double planet orbiting the star Arcturus
and is the place were Tsathoggua's formless spawn
The planet Uranus
. It is inhabited by metallic, cube-shaped beings with multiple legs. These creatures worship a minor deity known as L'rog'g (possibly another aspect of Nyarlathotep
), whose rituals require a yearly sacrifice in the form of the excising of the legs from a native.
When the Insects from Shaggai (the Shan) arrived, the natives of L'gy'hx initially tolerated them and allowed them to build a huge city. After two centuries, the natives even came to see the Shan as co-rulers of the planet. In time, many Shan eschewed the veneration of Azathoth and began to worship the L'gy'hx deity Lrogg. But when some natives of L'gy'hx likewise turned to the worship of Azathoth, the event prompted the priests of Lrogg to start an inquisition, inflicting gruesome punishments on the heretics. Relations with the Shan soured quickly as a result, and the priests of Lrogg demanded that all temples of Azathoth be removed from L'gy'hx. A small group of the Shan, still faithful to the Azathoth sect, left L'gy'hx, teleporting themselves and their deity's temple to the planet Earth.
Dark planet inhabited by crystalline beings and the dwelling place of the Great Old One Q'yth-az
. The Nug-Soth of Yaddith journeyed to this world in hopes of finding a magical formula that would defeat the Dholes
Shaggai (or Chag-Hai) is a planet orbiting twin green suns and is the homeworld of the Shan
, or Insects from Shaggai. The Shan's planet was destroyed eight centuries ago, possibly by Ghroth the Harbinger
. The being known only as The Worm that Gnaws in the Night
also resides here.
Shonhi (also Stronti) is a transgalactic world frequented by the denizens of Yaddith.
A planet where the Insects from Shaggai dwelt for a while. They initially believed the planet was uninhabited; but when their slaves began disappearing, they soon discovered the terrible truth. They left shortly thereafter.
A huge planet that broke apart to form the asteroid belt
. According to the G'harne Fragments
, the event was caused by a "seed of Azathoth
A mysterious planet believed to be part of our solar system, though the predominant view places it in a binary star
system near Baalbo (a dark star) and its companion Yifne (a green sun). The being Glaaki
is believed to have visited this world en route to Earth.
A planet in the "twenty-third nebula" and the supposed birthplace of Great Cthulhu
World of Seven Suns
Possibly a planet near Fomalhaut according to some writers. Its inhabitants created seven artificial suns to replace their dying natural sun. Lovecraft said that Nyarlathotep dwells on the World of the Seven Suns, but he makes no connection with Fomalhaut.
Others connect the Seven Suns to the seven stars of the Pleiades, the Hyades, or possibly Ursa Major.
A distant galaxy
and the dwelling place of the Great Old One Zathog
The sister planet of Shaggai. The Shan conquered this world and enslaved its native inhabitants, a race of carnivorous monsters. When Shaggai was destroyed, the Shan joined their brethren here and remained for some time.
[T]he spawn of Cthulhu ... came down from remote and ultra-telluric Xoth, the dim green double star that glitters like a daemonic eye in the blackness beyond Abbith.
—Lin Carter, "Out of the Ages"
Xoth (or Zoth) is the green binary star where Cthulhu and his ilk once lived before coming to earth. According to the Xothic legend cycle, it is where Cthulhu mated with Idh-yaa to beget Ghatanothoa, Ythogtha, and Zoth-Ommog.
Xoth is also the native home of Ycnágnnisssz and Zstylzhemghi, and was the temporary home of the latter's "husband", Ghisguth, and their progeny, the infant Tsathoggua. Tsathoggua later went to live on Yuggoth. Afterward, he fled to Cykranosh to escape Cxaxukluth's cannibalistic eating habits.
Xoth may be the star Sirius, since "Xoth" is similar to "Sothis", the Egyptian name for the star. However, it is more likely that Xoth coincides with the star "Zoth" in Smith's writings.
Yaddith is a distant planet that orbits five suns. Aeons ago it was inhabited by the Nug-Soth
, creatures with traits similar to mammals, reptiles, and insects. The Nug-Soth sought a way to prevent the destruction of their planet's crust by the Dholes
, but to no avail. Eventually, the Dholes overwhelmed them and destroyed the Nug-Soth's civilization. Survivors of the catastrophe escaped, however, and hid on various planets. Life on Yaddith amongst the Nug-Soth
and the Dholes that threatened them was first described in detail in Through the Gates of the Silver Key
as Randolph Carter
is stranded there for hundreds of years while sharing the body of Zkauba the wizard, though Lovecraft did not name the race that inhabited the planet.
Robert M. Price's short story "Saucers from Yaddith" (1984) hints that Nug-Soth scientists have appeared on Earth performing various experiments on humans—some relatively harmless (two brothers in medieval Germany claimed that an "angel" had switched their hands and eyes), some rather bizarre (such as changing a man's blood type from B to A), and others utterly horrific or disgusting.
Yaksh is the planet Neptune
and is inhabited by strange fungous beings. Hziulquoigmnzhah dwelt here for a while after fleeing Yuggoth to escape Cxaxukluth's cannibalistic urges. Hziulquoigmnzhah was evidently worshipped by the Yakshians, but he soon tired of their venerations and moved to Cykranosh.
Planet with three moons that orbits Betelgeuse
in the mysterious Gray Gulf of Yarnak. The now-deserted city of Bel Yarnak is on its surface. The world may have been the one-time home of the Great Old One Mnomquah
A planet in a distant galaxy
. It is inhabited by a race of technologically-advanced beings that resemble huge centipedes
that are slightly larger than a human. The populace worships an entity known as Juk-Shabb
, which appears as a glowing, color-shifting orb. Very little is known about this deity other than it is telepathic and is greatly revered by the denizens of Yekub.
The Yekubians destroyed all intelligent life in the galaxy where they dwelt and sought to extend their influence throughout the universe. As part of their grand scheme, they sent out cube-shaped probes that could effect a mind-swap with any intelligent creature who found one. In this way, Yekubian agents could infiltrate the finder's world. One such cube landed on the Earth during the reign of the Great Race of Yith. When several of its members were taken over, the Yithians realized the danger of the cube and sequestered it under heavy guard. Eventually, however, the cube was lost.
The original homeworld of the Great Race of Yith, according to the Eltdown Shards. It is described as a "black, aeon-dead orb in far space" ("The Shadow out of Time", Lovecraft). Its actual location is a mystery. Some scholars place it in our own solar system, just beyond Pluto; others say it is the fourth of the five planets that orbit the star Ogntlach. Yith is said to have a thin atmosphere and seas heated by geothermal energy.
name for the planet Jupiter
A planet in the same star cluster
as Abbith, Xoth, and Zaoth.
Yrautrom is a distant planet orbiting the star Algol
, said to be home to Zvilpogghua, an offspring of Tsathoggua
Yuggoth (or Iukkoth) is the dwarf planet Pluto
. It may alternately be an enormous planet that orbits on the rim of the solar system
A planet near Xoth. It is home to metal brains and houses a great library of Yuggothian books. After Yaddith was destroyed by the Dholes
, several survivors of the catastrophe fled here.
- Harms, Daniel (1998). The Encyclopedia Cthulhiana. 2nd ed., Oakland, CA: Chaosium. ISBN 1-56882-119-0.
- Joshi, S. T. (1989). Selected Papers on Lovecraft. 1st printing, West Warwick, RI: Necronomicon Press. ISBN 0-940884-23-2.
- Price, Robert M. (Candlemas 1984). "Brian Lumley—Reanimator". Crypt of Cthulhu #19: A Pulp Thriller and Theological Journal Vol. 3 (No. 3): Robert M. Price (ed.), Bloomfield, NJ: Cryptic Publications. URL accessed on February 27, 2006.