Coomb Imago

I made these sketches to give me a clearer idea of the setting of the scene in The Chosen in which Carnelian comes by bone boat to Coomb Imago to visit Jaspar. For scale, Carnelian is shown standing before the steps.

The first sketch shows the approach to the coomb, a cleft in the Sacred Wall: “They rounded a promontory into a deep coomb bay. An outcrop swung past the starboard bow and a view opened into an inlet whose upper reaches were filled with a dazzling avalanche of sculpted stone. Terrace piled on terrace. Spires and towers frowned and stared. Impaled giants disembowelled balconies, their skin poxed with windows. Terraces jutted out over the water held aloft by man-shaped buttresses up to their waists in the lake.”

note: the caryatid colonnade at the base of the palace that is the front of the atrium.

The second sketch shows the entry into the palace lying at the back of the atrium: “As the boat came to rest, he squinted into the cavernous atrium framed by their shins. He disembarked and walked round a lichened foot and column leg. From the gloom emerged a wall of crowding Masters, tall as trees. In their midst was a doorway that even they could have entered without stooping. It gave onto a flight of steps flanked by oily mosaics. He ran his hand over the amber and jade and gazed up.”