In the His Dark Materials trilogy, the last book spends much of its time going on about the prophesy that Mrs Coulter overheard the witch talking about, regarding the choice Lyra was going to have to make, which was going to be like the choice Eve had to make in the Garden of Eden.

But the book never appears to state what this choice this was, unless I missed something really obvious. It mentions who the tempter is, but again that person never specifically asks Lyra to make a choice in doing something that I would consider to have had significant ramifications on all the worlds / heaven.

So can someone clarify exactly what the choice was she was destined to make?

2 Answers 2


At the end of the book she (and Will) have the option to stay together and use the Knife to open portals to each other to follow their love, but they decide not to and don't act on their desires.


Back up by wikipedia:

In the first novel of His Dark Materials, Northern Lights (known in the United States of America as The Golden Compass), Serafina Pekkala tells of the prophecy of a girl who is "destined to bring about the end of destiny" at the expense of a great betrayal. It transpires that Lyra's destiny is to be the second Eve and fall into the temptation of the serpent, represented by Mary Malone....However, in order to ensure the stability of the universes and protect people from the creation of Spectres, Will and Lyra must close all of the inter-dimensional windows with the help of angels and keep them closed forever - and since their dæmons cannot live outside of their own birth worlds, they must part forever.

  • Great answer, thanks @Pureferret. I thought it was something like this, but the book never actually clarified it (which was one of the very few things that frustrated me about the book(s) - I was waiting for this grand revelation or obvious action of Lyra, as it had been building up so much, but it never came in explicit terms).
    – Nick Shaw
    Commented Apr 24, 2012 at 8:12
  • 4
    I think the beauty of Pullman's work (this one in particular) is it eschews grand revelation (something in the book more related to The Church) to subtle truths.
    – AncientSwordRage
    Commented Apr 24, 2012 at 8:26
  • 3
    That's true, authority's end being an example of an incredibly under-hyped action. Pullman does do that very well.
    – Nick Shaw
    Commented Apr 24, 2012 at 9:05

The choice to leave childhood behind, and lose her "innocence". Expressed by her acting on her attraction and love for Will, and initiating their adult relationship.

  • Ah, ok, that makes sense. And Mary Malone encouraged that I guess. And it links in with Eve's choice too. Cool, thanks!
    – Nick Shaw
    Commented Apr 20, 2012 at 17:56

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