Cthulhu Mythos

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The Cthulhu Mythos, also known as the Lovecraft Mythos,[1] is a shared fictional universe created in the 1920s by American horror writer H. P. Lovecraft.

The term was coined by Lovecraft's associate August Derleth, and named after Cthulhu, a powerful fictional entity in Lovecraft's stories. It refers to a loose framework formed by common elements (such as places, names, or entities) that appear in more than one tale, adding continuity and depth to the works. Authors writing in the Lovecraftian milieu have continued to use elements of the mythos in an ongoing expansion of the fictional universe, sometimes in ways far removed from Lovecraft's original conception.[2] The mythos is not necessarily consistent from story to story, as many writers, including Lovecraft himself, would frequently alter dates, names, and locations to suit the framework of one particular work.

Contents

Development

Robert M. Price, in his essay "H. P. Lovecraft and the Cthulhu Mythos", described two stages in the development of the Cthulhu Mythos. The first stage, or "Cthulhu Mythos proper" as Price calls it, took shape during Lovecraft's lifetime and was subject to his guidance. The second stage occurred under August Derleth who attempted to categorize and expand the Mythos after Lovecraft's death.[3]

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