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A wiki dedicated to The King In Yellow, the Yellow Mythos and all things related
to the dark mysteries of Carcosa, Hastur and the Yellow Sign...

Welcome to The Yellow Site

Anyone with more than a passing familiarity with The King in Yellow will know that the character and the play of this name are not supposed to truly exist. They are fictional creations from the pages of a real book of the same name.

This "real" version of The King In Yellow was written by Robert W. Chambers, a renowned author of more than a century ago, whose work has on the whole faded into obscurity. The King In Yellow is his most popular and recognised work, published in 1895, featuring a series of short stories (and poems) that are hard to categorise but are together regarded as an important early landmark in 'weird fiction'.

The opening stories of the book concentrate upon the mysterious, horrific play; or at least upon those characters who fall victim to it, and hence to the frightening and powerful eponymous entity that seems to stalk its pages... and maybe the world they inhabit too.

Chambers' writing style hinted, if only obliquely, at a great mythology behind his handful of tales. He seeded them with allusions here and there to shadowy figures, alien places, strange artifacts and terrible gods; to clouded lakes and dark stars; to death reanimated, an ancient implacable evil and madness pushing in through the walls of the world.

Yet the mysteries of Carcosa, the King and his Yellow Sign have faded from view even before the end of the collection of stories – and for whatever reason its author never returned to this imagined universe he had created so economically and tantalisingly.

This did leave the way open for numerous followers to revisit and expand upon Chambers' sparsely sketched details in his stead. Over the hundred and twenty years and more since he published The King In Yellow, this has formed what has come to be known as the Yellow Mythos.

Not least among them are those writers who have co-opted many of its features into the Cthulhu Mythos, based upon the writings of celebrated 20th-century horror maestro H.P. Lovecraft: the incorporation of these Yellow elements both into further stories and into the Call of Cthulhu games has seen some of the Yellow Mythos' greatest expansion and definition.


The aim of this project is twofold. For the main part it is an attempt to collate all relevant information on everything associated with The King in Yellow – for the uninitiated and curious, as well as for those who know and appreciate the mythology. It deals with the original stories, their inspirations and successors and other people’s interpretations of the mythology. It is also concerned with the dark reality suggested within the fiction and how the presence of the play and the King are regarded as seeping into normal reality and disrupting a previously familiar and sane world. A final part of this project is to provide a 'sandbox' for those wanting to express, develop or showcase ideas related to the mythos.

This Virtual Carcosa is brought to you thanks to the nice people at Wikia.com, now known as Fandom.com.
 

...Have you seen The Yellow Sign?

Introduction

If you are unfamiliar with The Yellow Mythos, see the 'Welcome' box to the right for some general background information. The Introduction to the Mythos will then get you started properly.

For an overview of how this wiki is arranged as a whole see Wiki Overview.

Who or what is The King In Yellow?

'The King In Yellow' is a term that crops up again and again throughout this wiki, as he/it is the foundation of the Mythos. There are fundamentally three things that go by the title The King In Yellow:

See also the disambiguation page covering these and other uses of the term.

What is the 'Mythos'?

The following are some very useful first ports of call:

  • Defining the 'Mythos' describes what we're talking about in this wiki, and explores the notion of there being multiple, varying but interdependent versions of the mythology.
  • Introduction to the Mythos is a helpful primer on the overall story and the universe surrounding The King In Yellow and related texts.
  • What counts as Mythos canon? This is a guide to what (if anything) must be regarded as necessary, sacrosanct and inviolate components of the Mythos.

Related topics to The King In Yellow

The pages for 'related topics' look at those elements in the fiction that are almost always mentioned in relationship to The King In Yellow – sometimes they are more important to the stories than the King himself.

They include The Yellow Sign, Carcosa, The Pallid Mask, The Lake of Hali and Hastur. Much of the fiction, including that involving the wider Hastur Mythos, refers to cults and inhuman servitors in thrall to the King and the Yellow Sign. There is also a strong history of referring to certain cosmological features, notably the Hyades and Aldebaran.

Source material for the Mythos

The source material on which the Mythos is founded includes published written material where the Play, the King, the Sign or Carcosa play an important part, including significant texts such as:

Other related works

Games

Various games (especially role-playing) mention the Yellow Mythos, such as Call of Cthulhu and Trail of Cthulhu. These are an important source for the Hastur Mythos version of the continuity in particular.

Film & TV

On film and television there have been several appearances of the Yellow Mythos, such as True Detective.

Stage

On the theatrical stage, live performances related to The King In Yellow have actually been attempted... despite the danger.

Music

Works of music based on or inspired by the contents of The King in Yellow, or which have inspired addition to the Mythos.

Further recommendations

Some further recommendations of stories and poems that touch on similar themes to those explored by this Mythos, such as The Phantom Of The Opera and The Yellow Book.

Using this wiki

The category tags at the top and bottom of most pages are an excellent way to find related information – just click on the tag to be taken to a list of all the pages in that category. When adding or updating pages on this wiki please bear the following points in mind:

  • Make use of the tags – these are really useful, but do make sure you put new pages in the correct category!
  • Only make drastic changes to content where absolutely necessary (i.e. factual errors) or where an entry is incomplete.
  • Make sure you are certain of your facts before changing information. If you are not 100% certain or a point is contentious, please leave the existing information and add yours with an indication as to the doubt or dispute. Alternatively, put a request for clarification on the Required page.
  • Where information does not directly relate to The Yellow Mythos (such as the broader Cthulhu Mythos) please do not add it to the Wiki unless you really have to – use links to Wikipedia or a specialised Wiki instead. Non-Mythos stories are fine if a) they influenced or are strongly influenced by the Mythos, b) deal with similar themes that may be of interest to readers or c) demonstrate an interesting concept or involve some interesting trivia.
  • When creating a new page, please doublecheck that it doesn't already exist – a couple of duplicates have arisen due to issues of capitalisation and styles of abbreviation. Also, make sure that the spelling and form is correct to prevent duplication by error. The Wiki works best when it is easy to find information!
  • For further resources to help develop this wiki, see Wiki Development.

Theories on all things Yellow

Pages for Theories discussing various aspects of the Yellow Mythos and taking ideas in various directions.

Submissions Wanted and New Releases

A chance for writers and readers to keep abreast of new projects related to The Yellow Mythos that are open to submissions or which are newly available for purchase. See also Mythos Development.

Required

An appeal for your help to clarify or find information we have so far been unable to provide, to further flesh out this wiki.

Links

A collection of links to the full text of The King In Yellow, and to a variety of other sites discussing the Mythos in all its forms.

Thanks

This site wouldn't exist if it wasn't for a lot of people. We would like to say thank you for their contributions to as many of those people as we can.

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.