topic: Osrakum /


This is one of the first images I ever produced relating to the Stone Dance. It depicts one of the Chosen, and already contains many of the books’ core elements. Anatomically bizarre, the figure presages some of the themes of mutilation and freakishness. There is the complex symbolism of the nested crowns, with the feather-like ribbing, but abstract butterfly patterning. The mask is already there—though at that stage it was quite Art Noveau, as are […]

Coomb Suth

Coombs are valleys eroded into the inner face of the Sacred Wall. These are the many indentations that can be seen in the model of Osrakum. The Great and the Lesser Chosen have their palaces and gardens built into these coombs. Only the highest Houses of the Great possess a whole coomb to themselves. Coomb Suth is Carnelian’s ancestral home. The map shows the palaces set into the floor of the coomb. Above, carved high […]


Welcome to Osrakum. In this section maps and diagrams are presented in a sequence mirroring that of the narrative of The Chosen. Osrakum is a volcanic crater containing the Skymere and, in the midst of this lake, the Isle. On the Isle is the smaller crater containing the Plain of Thrones and, beyond that, the Labyrinth. The Yden forms the greater part of the Isle. From the heart of this rises the Pillar of Heaven, […]

Osrakum (model)

I made this model to better understand the complex landform that resulted from the collaboration with Professor Ben Harte—alas, it was destroyed in a house fire. The crater of Osrakum contains the Skymere lake and has the Isle at its centre. On this island are the smaller cone and crater, that contains the Plain of Thrones, the Labyrinth, the Pillar of Heaven and the Forbidden Garden of the Yden. The edge of the large, almost […]

Osrakum (original)

This is the original map that I produced on an ancient black and white graphics application on my trusty Mac SE, and printed out on a dot matrix printer. It was from this that Neil Gower produced the map used in the books.

The Canyon of the Three Gates

The Canyon of the Three Gates is the only way in and out of the crater of Osrakum. It is a narrow defile running between sheer, cliff walls. Three fortresses have been built along its length, the three ‘gates’: the Green, the Red or Blood or Ichorian, and the Black or Death Gates. The Cloaca—a channel cut anciently in the floor of the Canyon—allows excess water to be carried out of the lake that fills […]