Hyperborea  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
  1. Greek mythology The land of sunshine and plenty, beyond the northern wind.
  2. (metaphorical) The extreme north of the Earth; an area in a northerly region.

Cultural references

  • George MacDonald's At the Back of the North Wind features a feminine version of Boreas, named "North Wind", who takes a sickly boy, "Diamond", to "the back of the North Wind", which she herself cannot enter. More than two chapters are devoted to a description of MacDonald's Hyperborea and how Diamond got there.
  • Dante's Paradise, in his Divine Comedy, is the subject of Hyperborean allusions: it is figured geographically north of Purgatory; and, great and little bears (symbols of the polar north) appear above the summit of Mount Purgatorio.
  • In Herman Melville's Moby Dick, Ishmael suggests that, among other things, the painting in the Spouter Inn in Chapter 3 could be "a Hyperborean winter scene."
  • Clark Ashton Smith authored a series of short stories known as the Hyperborean cycle (1931–58). Some elements were borrowed by H. P. Lovecraft in what later became known as the Cthulhu Mythos.
  • In Robert E. Howard's Conan stories (1932–36), Hyperborea is a land to the north-east of Conan's native Cimmeria.
  • The "Hyperboreans" (Hyperboreisch-römische Gesellschaft) were a group of northern European scholars who studied classical ruins in Rome, founded in 1824 by Theodor Panofka, Otto Magnus von Stackelberg, August Kestner and Eduard Gerhard.
  • Australian artist Norman Lindsay in July 1923 first exhibited his etching Hyperborea in Sydney. A month later he published two essays about Hyperborea, the first in Vision, No. 2, in which he said that only a picture or a poem could describe Hyperborea. The essays were later combined as Hyperborea: Two Fantastic Travel Essays by Fanfrolico Press in 1928.
  • Friedrich Nietzsche referred to those who followed his philosophy as "Hyperboreans" in The Antichrist (translated by Anthony M. Ludovici.)
  • German electronic music pioneers Tangerine Dream released an album with the title Hyperborea in 1983.
  • Hyperborea and its inhabitants are referenced on occasion in the Hellboy comic book universe, particularly in the miniseries Lobster Johnson: The Iron Prometheus.
  • In Stephen King's "Dark Tower" series, Calvin Tower calls Jake Chambers "Hyperborean Wanderer."
  • Ruins of the Hyperborean civilization play a role in the plot of Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis.
  • In The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan Hyperborean Giants are fighting for Kronos and, with Prometheus, give Percy Jackson Pandora's Box, containing hope. In Rick Riordan's subsequent book "The Son of Neptune", Percy Jackson and his friends also encounter the giants in Alaska on their quest to free the god of death, Thanatos.
  • The Hyperboreans are the subject of the title track of album Hyperboreans by Jackie Oates, an English folk music singer/songwriter.
  • The Hyperboreans are the subject of the many songs by Bal-Sagoth, an English symphonic black metal band.
  • The 1977 film Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger wove a number of related references into the plot. Hyperborea was the name given to an island far in the North Sea, described in the film by the witch Zenobia as being "past the Celtic Isles". The island had been home to the Arimaspi and contained a pyramid structure called The Shrine of the Four Elements, located in a temperate valley hidden amongst the ice of the Arctic Circle.
  • Several of the characters in Ulysses by James Joyce refer to themselves as Hyperborean, referring to their Celtic ethnicity.

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Hyperborea" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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