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Hastur, also known as the King in Yellow, is one of the many Great Old Ones and Cthulhu Mythos deities, acting as one of the most mysterious of Lovecraftian gods.

History

First appearing in Ambrose Bierce's Haita the Shepherd, the god has been stated to be Cthulhu's half brother, a fallen angel, the god of shepherds, and the duke of Hell itself. He is also the main villain of Magicka, under the name Assatur, who plotted to destroy Midgård by possessing the powerful magician Grimnír, and trick the orcs into distracting the humans, while he transported incorporeal daemons into Midgård, which were tearing the world apart.

He has also been known to be the spawn of Yog-Sothoth. Hastur's true form shall never be revealed, but there are two main ways that he is constantly imagined. The first one is a shapeless blob of octopi-like appendages, a common trait among Cthulhu related deities (and is also similar to his half-niece Cthylla). The second is a humanoid hidden by a golden cloak with a family of similarly colored tentacles oozing out from under him.

Other than Hastur's debut, he is mentioned in H.P Lovecraft's The Whisperer of Darkness and is used as more of a placeholder name for certain stars in Robert W. Chambers' collection of written stories. Also, in Robert W. Chambers' ghost story The Demoiselle D'Ys, he is treated as the usual supernatural entity, but in The Repairer of Reputations, he is referred to as a location. This could be because a continuity error, a simple coincidence, or they are possibly named after each other. He is also mentioned in August Derleth's The Dweller in Darkness, in which he is stated to have been imprisoned "upon a black Star near Alderban" by the Elder Gods after they defeated the Great Old Ones.

Servants & Followers

Hastur has several followers, both human and extraterrestrial. The most notable are presumably the Brotherhood of the Yellow Sign and the dragon-like Byakhee. Gramma Bruckner, the main antagonist of Stephen King's story Gramma, is also implied to be one of his worshippers.

Media Influence

Hastur/The King in Yellow has been referenced in countless forms of Media. Some notable are:

  • Johannes van der Berg, is a Dutch self-described intellectual who is a possible avatar to Hastur, in the video game The Sinking City.
  • Hastur (as the Yellow King) is worshiped by Errol Childress and other members of the Tuttle Cult in True Detective Season 1. His realm of Carcosa is also mentioned.
  • Fenric from the Doctor Who story "The Curse of Fenric", who is also known as Hastur the Unspeakable, an Great Old One who opposes the Seventh Doctor.
  • Hastur: A feared and sadistic demon holding the rank "Duke of Hell" in Neil Gaiman's Good Omens.
  • George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire universe refers to a sorcerer lord, the 69th Yellow Emperor, who rules over the city of Carcosa. The lord claims to be from a dynasty that fell a thousand years before.
  • The Hanged King: A powerful cosmic entity from the realm of Alagadda (similar to Carcosa). Can enter the physical world either through the SCP-701-play or through his servant, SCP-2264-4.
  • Hastur has a small, but critical role within the web series Carmilla: The Series, in which he is the deceased husband of the series overarching villain, the Summerian goddess Inanna. Hastur himself never appears in the seires, but his death serves as the cataclyst of Inanna's villainy and her goal to bring about Hell on Earth to reunite with him. His exact role and connection isn't revealed until the third season, but in the first season, the Sword of Hastur is a weapon used to try to kill Lopphiformes.
  • There is a character named Hasutā in the Japanese manga/anime Haiore! Nyaruko-san. He is a Hasturan, and his foreign nature causes him to be a bit shy. This Hastur is Lawful Good.

Gallery

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Outer Gods
Abhoth | Azathoth | Cxaxukluth | Daoloth | Ghroth | Hydra | Lu-Kthu | Nyarlathotep | Shub-Niggurath | Tulzscha | Ubbo-Sathla | Yhoundeh | Yibb-Tstll | Yog-Sothoth

Great Old Ones
Aphoom Zhah | Baoht Z'uqqa-mogg | Bokrug | Byatis | Crom Cruach | Cthugha | Cthulhu | Cthylla | Cyäegha | Dweller in the Gulf | Eihort | Father Dagon | Ghatanothoa | Gla'aki | Hastur | Mother Hydra | Ithaqua | M'nagalah | Rhan Tegoth | Rlim Shaikorth | Shaurash-ho | Shudde M'ell | Tsathoggua | The Worm That Gnaws In The Night | Y'golonac | Yig | Ysbaddaden | Ythogtha | Zindarak | Zoth-Ommog | Zstylzhemghi | Zvilpogghua

Hostile Species
Deep Ones | Elder Things | Flying Polyps | Ghouls | Hounds of Tindalos | Horsemen of Nyarlathotep | K'n-yanians | Many-Angled Ones | Men of Leng | Mi-gos | Shan | Shoggoths | Tcho-Tcho | Xothians | Zoogs

Cults
The Black Brotherhood | Brotherhood of the Beast | Brotherhood of the Black Pharaoh | Brotherhood of the Skin | Brotherhood of the Yellow Sign | Chesuncook Witch Coven | Chorazos Cult | Church of Starry Wisdom | Cthulhu Cult | Cult of the Bloody Tongue | Esoteric Order of Dagon | The Slaves of the Flame Undying

Other
Abdul Alhazred | Brown Jenkin | Colour Out of Space | De la Poer Family | Dunwich Horror | Ephraim Waite | Herbert West | High Priest Not To Be Described | Joseph Curwen | Karl Heinrich | Keziah Mason | Ludwig Prinn | Master of the Monolith | Nephren-Ka | Obed Marsh | Old Whateley | Player from Beyond the Void | Shambler from the Stars | Terrible Old Man | Toad God | Walakea | Wilbur Whateley

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11/22/63
Lee Harvey Oswald | Frank Dunning

A Good Marriage
Robert Bob Anderson

An Apt Pupil
Kurt Dussander | Todd Bowden

Bag of Bones
Max Devore | Sara Tidwell | Roggete

Big Driver
Lester Norville | Ramona Norville

Black House
Charles Burnside

Blind Willie
Raymond Fiegler

Cain Rose Up
Curt Garrish

Carrie
Billy Nolan | Carrie White | Chris Hargensen | Donna and Mary Lila Grace Thibodeau | Helen Shyres | Margaret White | Rachel Lang | Ralph White | Ruth Gogan | Tina Blake | Tommy Erbter

Cat's Eye
Troll

Cell
Phone Crazies | Raggedy Man

Children of the Corn
Children of the Corn (Isaac Chroner | Malachai Boardman) | He Who Walks Behind the Rows

Christine
Arnie Cunningham | Christine | Repperton Gang

Creepshow
Crate Beast | Nathan Grantham | Richard Vickers | Upson Pratt | Wilma Northrup

Crouch End
The Entity

Cujo
Cujo

Cycle of the Werewolf
Lester Lowe

Desperation
Sheriff Collie Entragian | Tak

Doctor Sleep
Rose the Hat | The True Knot

Dolan's Cadillac
Jimmy Dolan

Dolores Claiborne
Joe St. George

Dreamcatcher
Byrus | Mr. Gray

Duma Key
Perse

Firestarter
Captain Hollister | Doctor Herman Pynchot | John Rainbird

From a Buick 8
The Buick

Gerald's Game
Gerald Burlingame | Moonlight Man | Tom

Gramma
Gramma Bruckner | Hastur

Insomnia
Atropos | Crimson King

In The Tall Grass
Ross Humboldt

IT
Alvin Marsh | Bowers Gang (Belch Huggins | Henry Bowers | Marcia Fadden (novel only) | Patrick Hockstetter | Peter Gordon | Vic Criss) | Butch Bowers | It | Richard Macklin | Tom Rogan

Jerusalem's Lot
Philip Boone | The Worm

Lunch at the Gotham Café
Guy

Maximum Overdrive
Bubba Hendershot | Camp Loman | Happy Toyz Truck | Ice Cream Truck | M274 Mule | Vending Machine

Misery
Annie Wilkes

Mr. Mercedes
Brady Hartsfield | Morris Bellamy

Needful Things
Leland Gaunt

Pet Sematary
Church | Ellie Creed (2019 film only) | Gage Creed | Wendigo | Timmy Baterman | Renee Hallow | Gus Gilbert | Clyde Parker | Zowie

Quitter's Inc.
Mr. Donatti | Quitters Inc.

Rage
Charlie Decker

Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption
Bogs Diamond | Byron Hadley | Elmo Blatch | Samuel Norton | Sisters

Roadwork
Barton George Dawes | Sal Maglorie

Rose Madder
Norman Daniels

Rose Red
Professor Joyce Reardon

Salem's Lot
Kurt Barlow | Richard Straker

Secret Window, Secret Garden
John Shooter

Sleepwalkers
Charles Brady | Mary Brady | Sleepwalkers

Storm of the Century
André Linoge

The Body
John "Ace" Merrill | Milo Pressman

The Boogeyman
The Boogeyman

The Crate
The Dark Half
George Stark

The Dark Tower
Dark Tower Villains

The Dead Zone
Frank Dodd | Greg Stillson

The Diary of Ellen Rimbauer
Ellen Rimbauer

The Green Mile
William Wharton | Percy Wetmore

The Langoliers
Craig Toomey | Langoliers | Roger Toomey

The Ledge
Cressner

The Long Walk
The Major | Gary Barkovitch

The Mangler
Bill Gartley | Lin Sue | The Mangler | The Mangler Virus

The Mist
Mrs. Carmody | The Mist

The Monkey
The Monkey

The Night Flier
Dwight Renfield

The Raft
Lake Blob

The Regulators
Tak

The Running Man
Damon Killian | United States of America

The Shining
Jack Torrance | Hotel Caretaker | Lorraine Massey

The Stand
Barry Dorgan | Bobby Terry | Harold Lauder | Julie Lawry | Lloyd Henreid | Nadine Cross | Randall Flagg | The Kid | The Rat Man | Trashcan Man | Whitney Horgan

The Tailsman
Heck Bast | Sonny Singer

The Tommyknockers
Tommyknockers

Thinner
Billy Halleck | Richie Ginelli

Trucks
Westway Refrigerated Truck

Under the Dome
Christine Price | Dawn Sinclair-Barbara | Jim Rennie | Junior Rennie | Phil Bushey

Why We're In Vietnam
Ronnie Malenfant

Word Processor of the Gods
Richard Hagstrom | Roger Hagstrom

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