Questions tagged [his-dark-materials]

For questions about the "His Dark Materials" trilogy of fantasy novels, coming together to form an epic, by Philip Pullman comprising Northern Lights (1995, published as The Golden Compass in North America), The Subtle Knife (1997), and The Amber Spyglass (2000). Use with the relevant book tag where appropriate.

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Is there an official list of the alethiometer symbols?

Has Philip Pullman ever released or endorsed a complete list of symbols for the alethiometer, along with one or two suggested meanings? I've found this link through Reddit, but I don't know whether it'...
7
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2answers
917 views

Can the bond between humans and daemons ever be restored after intercision in His Dark Materials?

I've been watching His Dark Materials on HBO and was particularly disturbed by last night's episode, "The Daemon-Cages." It showed a number of the daemons in cages, which had been cut away from their ...
4
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1answer
298 views

Do People have pets in Lyra's world?

In the Lyra's universe people have a daemon, an animal version of themselves. However do they also have normal animal pets (Cats, dogs etc) or does the deamon fill this role?
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How will the third volume in the Book of Dust be an “equel” and still conclude the events of the second volume?

Mild spoilers about "The Secret Commonwealth" follow. Philip Pullman has announced before that the third volume of the Book Of Dust will be an "equel", that is, events will take place during the time ...
5
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2answers
266 views

How does Lyra get from Svalbard to Oxford?

Is there any explanation of how Lyra gets from Svalbard in her world to Oxford in Will's world (in The Subtle Knife)? All subsequent travel between worlds through the windows has the traveler ending ...
6
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1answer
193 views

Why didn't Will continue to make windows and fight the Spectres?

Major spoilers, this question is about the end of The Amber Spyglass. I won't put everything into a spoiler block. At the end of The Amber Spyglass, Will and Lyra (and an angel) discuss whether there ...
5
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1answer
2k views

Why did the Dust stop flowing away when Lyra and Will realized their love for each other?

In The Amber Spyglass, by Philip Pullman, Lyra and Will realize they love each other, and kiss. Doctor Mary Malone suddenly sees the Dust stop flowing away, and instead it is eddying and swirling ...
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2answers
4k views

Why does Mrs Coulter’s hair change colour between La Belle Sauvage and His Dark Materials?

My daughter (credit where due) was struck by Mrs Coulter’s hair changing colour between La Belle Sauvage and His Dark Materials – do we know anything about why? In His Dark Materials1, the third ...
6
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0answers
330 views

Who made the alethiometer and how?

In Northern Lights, the alethiometers were said to have been made in Prague in the 17th century, and it is later suggested that their creation is parallel to the Scientific Revolution in Europe in our ...
4
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1answer
662 views

In the first book of “His Dark Materials”, why didn't Lyra ask the alethiometer what the Gobblers were doing?

I'm reading THE GOLDEN COMPASS by Phillip Pullman. Lyra, John Faa, Farder Coram, and just about everyone else wonders what the Gobblers are doing with the children they've been stealing, but they ...
7
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1answer
1k views

Difference between 'intercision' in Northern Lights and being attacked by a Spectre?

In Northern Lights, children (and the adult nurses) undergo intercision at Bolvangar. Many of the children die, but some like Tony Makarios survive (if only for a time) and adults definitely survive. ...
5
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1answer
538 views

Why do Will and Lyra's personalities not change in the world of the dead in Northern Lights without their Daemons?

In The Amber Spyglass, Will and Lyra (& Chevalier Tialys and Lady Salmakia) must leave their Daemons behind when they cross the river into the world of the dead. If Humans in His Dark Materials ...
6
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1answer
472 views

What are the differences between the dæmons of adults and children?

What are the differences in adult and child dæmons other than that adult's daemons can't change form. I assume there are other differences because in "The Northern Lights" (Golden Compass in US) it ...
20
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1answer
14k views

What passages were removed or changed from the North American version of His Dark Materials?

Wikipedia claims: North American printings of The Amber Spyglass have censored passages describing Lyra's incipient sexuality. Which has made me wonder about any and all changes to the NA version ...
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Where do baby daemons come from?

In the His Dark Materials trilogy, each person in Lyra's world has a daemon, which seems to be a part of their soul. Where do these daemons come from? Are they birthed by other daemons or do they ...
10
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4answers
1k views

Are all worlds at the same point in time?

In His Dark Materials, Lyra comes from a world where Catholicism and Protestantism apparently merged into one mega church that continues to exert great control over all aspects of life even into the ...
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2answers
1k views

Can “His Dark Materials” be read objectively? [closed]

I have asked this question on other websites, but I keep getting conflicting answers, so I figured I would ask here. I'm a Christian. I first read the "His Dark Materials" trilogy when I was in 5th ...
15
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1answer
5k views

His Dark Materials - Mythology and Symbolism Behind Dæmon Forms

Has Philip Pullman or any canon source with respect to the series provided any background information on how a character's personality "maps" (ie: in a computing/logical sense) to a particular animal? ...
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2answers
2k views

Why do dæmons in “His Dark Materials” never assume combat forms

One thing that I found particularly odd in the "His Dark Materials" trilogy is why none of the demons, while they're still capable of changing forms, never assume a useful form like a lion (which does ...
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1answer
1k views

Why don't the spectres in HDM attack Mary Malone?

In Amber Spyglass it is mentioned that the spectres dont attack Mary. Do we ever learn why this is?
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1answer
4k views

How is Mary Malone “the serpent”?

In The Subtle Knife, the shadows tell Mary Malone she must play the part of the serpent, and later it is clarified she has to play the same part to Lyra that the serpent did to Eve in the garden. ...
8
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2answers
842 views

Can it be true that Panserbjørnes don't have daemons and have no afterlife?

Iorek claims that bears have no daemons and just flat out die (don't go to the afterlife) when they die. But Will and Dr. Mary Malone (from our Earth) have daemons they don't know about; and of ...
5
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1answer
311 views

Why do Panserbjørns speak English?

Is there a backstory to explain why the bears speak English? In Golden Compass it doesn't even seem like they have their own native language (I haven't read further). Why would that make sense (in-...
9
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2answers
9k views

What exactly was the choice Lyra was prophesied to make?

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 ...
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4answers
2k views

What are the anti-Church messages in the “His Dark Materials” trilogy?

His Dark Materials contains criticisms of a controlling Church and forced removal of free will. Some of the parallels of the Magisterium to controlling hierarchies of cardinals, bishops can't be ...
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2answers
3k views

Why is “His Dark Materials” by Philip Pullman considered by some as anti religion?

I've read somewhere that His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman are attacked by many religious figures. I have only seen the movie "Golden Compass" but I would like to find out some more information as ...
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1answer
1k views

Is the movie rendition of the Golden Compass significantly different from the book?

I've seen some reviews which claim that all religious related subtext was subdued or removed from the movie. Did this result in a movie which is significantly different from the book?