In the Doctor Who episode "Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS" (S07E10) we saw Clara wandering off corridors of the TARDIS and finding this particular book.

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She starts to read it, during which she says:

So that's Who..

We know for sure that she saw The Doctor's name, because of the dialogue at the end of the episode, just before the time is rewritten:

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Clara: The library. I saw it. You were mentioned in a book.

The Doctor: I'm mentioned in a lot of books.

Clara: You call yourself Doctor. Why do you do that? You have a name. I've seen it in one corner of that tiny...

The Doctor: [shushing her] If I rewrite today, you won't remember. You won't go looking for my name.

Who wrote the book and why? Can we know the answer for sure?

  • 1
    Matt Smith's doctor reminds me of Christian Grey sometimes... not a good thing. Creep -_-
    – Mikasa
    Commented Jul 4, 2015 at 15:10
  • @MikasaPinata actually I like that kind of look. It shows how great is the bond between the Doctor and the Impossible girl. And about the book, I wonder how much time-travel was involved in the Great Time War. Doctor mentioned once about the Could've-Been-King and his army of Meanwhiles and Neverwheres. Maybe they are some kind of species able to do vortex manipulation.
    – oski86
    Commented Nov 2, 2015 at 13:20

2 Answers 2


We can't know for certain, but we can use the available info to make some informed guesses:

  • The cover has Gallifreyan symbols on it, which means it must have been written by a Timelord or someone who speaks Gallifreyan

  • Only a handful of Timelords survived long enough after the end of the Time War to have written a definitive history. Whoever wrote it must have had first hand knowledge or substantial access to a Timelord

  • Only two extant Timelords; The Doctor and the Master know the Doctor's real name. Whoever wrote it must be a timelord or someone very close to the Doctor

  • If this book had been externally published, then the Doctor's name would be publicly known unless it had been written for a single reader.

This all leads me to my conclusion. Excluding the Master (who missed most of the Time War) there are only two possible authors;

  • The Doctor (who wrote it himself, for his own personal amusement)

  • Failing that, it could have been a present from Professor River Song who we know speaks Gallifreyan, has an abiding interest in ancient history, knows the Doctor's name and has extensive personal access to at least one Timelord who was present during the major events of the Time War.

  • 1
    I'm just curious - how do we know that The Master knows Doctor's real name (name, not his nickname from academy - Theta Sigma)?
    – oski86
    Commented Jul 4, 2015 at 13:49
  • 1
    @oski86 - Erm. I know it's true. I don't know how I know it's true.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jul 4, 2015 at 14:27
  • 1
    @oski86 - Asked but not very satisfactorily answered here: scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/6971/…
    – Valorum
    Commented Jul 4, 2015 at 14:34
  • The Doctor as the author of the book was my strong candidate for an answer as well. But I never thought about River Song, it's a good point that she's an archaeologist and a possible author. I actually like this possibility, that she could write it. The Great Time War was known through all the universe as the most fierce conflict, Sontarans were envy of it. One thing we know for sure - the book is not written in Gallifreyan - TARDIS don't translate this language, yet Clara was able to understand the book. Doctor's name written in English transcription? (getting goosebumps ^-^)
    – oski86
    Commented Jul 4, 2015 at 15:59
  • 1
    @oski86 - I can see why the front would be decorated with Galifreyan symbols. They were one of the major antagonists in the war.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jul 4, 2015 at 16:31

It`s present in one of the chambers onboard the T.A.R.D.I.S and is not known to have appeared anywhere else. Therefor it is safe to assume that it is not an actual object brought onboard the T.A.R.D.I.S but like most other stuff onboard it has been fabricated by the T.A.R.D.I.S. And also as it has been pointed out only someone who knows the doctors true name and knows him closely would be able to write the book. This certainly narrows down the possibilities quite a bit, but there is one that has not been mentioned yet. since the book is in all likelihood a construction made by the T.A.R.D.I.S and we are looking for someone who both knows the doctor personally and has known him for a long time might it be that the book has no actual author? that instead of have being written by a surviving time lord the book AND its content was made by the T.A.R.D.I.S. the library onboard has been mentioned to contain all the most important knowledge in the universe (or maybe just all knowledge?) so of course a detailed account of the time war is necessary for the library to be complete. And of course in any Gallifreyan library such a book would take the place of honor.

  • This seems like guesswork rather than an evidence-based answer.
    – Valorum
    Commented Nov 11, 2016 at 11:57
  • With the what is known about the situation there is not much evidence of who wrote the book. the most one can do is set up the criteria that a possible author would have to fulfill and "sexy" is a possible candidate for writing the book since she:
    – RYPBAR
    Commented Nov 11, 2016 at 12:14
  • yeah sorry forgot enter posts and does not change lines well to continue last sentence she -speaks Gallifreyan -Knows the doctors real name (she was around when he still went by that name) -was present during the time war
    – RYPBAR
    Commented Nov 11, 2016 at 12:18
  • You can edit your post by clicking on edit below it. While you're at it, like @Valorum remarked, you may want to add some quotes, images, or other references to it. Welcome to the SF & Fantasy Stack, by the way. Have you taken the tour yet?
    – SQB
    Commented Nov 11, 2016 at 12:55
  • @SQB - No, he hasn't :-)
    – Valorum
    Commented Nov 11, 2016 at 13:24

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