That Is Not Dead: Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos Through the Centuries edited by Darrell Schweitzer
Hardcover – PS Publishing – Feb 2015 – 240 pages
The Great Old Ones, Cthulhu, Nyarlathotep, Yog Sothoth, and the rest, so vividly described by H. P. Lovecraft, have lurked in the dim places of the Earth since the beginning of time. That is not dead, wrote the mad poet Abdul Alhazred, which can eternal lie, and with strange aeons even death may die.
You may reasonably wonder, then, why no one seemed to notice prior to the events in the Lovecraft stories. Was Cthulhu merely dreaming in sunken R’lyeh all this time, or did the dreams he sent out to mankind subtly influence, or pervert, human history?
Were the outbreak of the Dunwich Horror and the resurrection of Charles Dexter Ward’s ancestor Joseph Curwen, both of which occurred in the 1920s, unique events, or have similarly dreadful things happened before? What were the Mi-Go of Yuggoth doing in the centuries before they were discovered in the Vermont hills by Henry Wentworth Akeley, as told in “The Whisperer in Darkness”?
This book proposes that such horrific events did occur down the centuries. They just have not been adequately chronicled until now. Esther Friesner proposes a unique explanation to the explosion of the island of Thera in the 2nd millennium B.C., which gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “big bang.”
Keith Taylor illuminates what was up till now merely a sinister allusion, of how Nyarlathotep the Crawling Chaos appeared as a man in Egypt in the days of the pharaohs. Jay Lake and John Langan tell of very different encounters between ancient Romans and forces vaster and more ancient than any of the world’s empires.
Darrell Schweitzer tells how survivors of the disastrous Peasants’ Crusade made an even more hideous pilgrimage to the Plateau of Leng. Don Webb reveals the very circumstances under which the English scholar John Dee translated the dreaded Necronomicon into English in the early 17th century.
S. T. Joshi, John R. Fultz, Harry Turtledove, Richard Lupoff, Will Murray. W.H. Pugmire, and Lois Gresh all explore the subtle and insidious ways Lovecraft’s cosmic monsters have touched the lives of all of us. If our species still survives, it may be by sheer chance, and not for long, for the horrors are still there, still waiting for the day when the stars are right and they shall return to reclaim the Earth.
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