Marvel Database

Professional History

Howard Phillips Lovecraft was an American author specializing in the genre of "weird fiction".

The Lovecraft Circle and the Cthulhu Mythos

H.P. Lovecraft is most widely recognized for creating a pantheon of cosmic beings commonly known as the "Great Old Ones", and being the origin of the Cthulhu Mythos, though he never intended to do so, as stated by August Derleth (a fellow writer and correspondent of Lovecraft), who coined the name, structured the stories in that continuity, and greatly expanded it through his publishing activity as Arkham House, and by writing his own Cthulhu Mythos.

Lovecraft corresponded many writers (and often became friend with them, with or without meeting them in person), with which he exchanged ideas, suggestions and corrections for their respective stories. Many of that "Lovecraft Circle" authors produced the basis of what became known as the Cthulhu Mythos. Aside from Derleth, who gathered the Mythos together after Lovecraft's death and produced many stories, most prominent were writer Robert E. Howard (who created Conan the Barbarian, Kull of Atlantis, Dark Agnes, Solomon Kane, and many other characters, some with more or less connection to what became the Mythos) and writer, poet and sculptor Clark Ashton Smith (who wrote the the Zothique Cycle, Averoigne, and the Hyperborean Cycle, among others).

Other authors included Robert Bloch and Frank Belknap Long, and the list could be extended Henry Kuttner, C. L. Moore, E. Hoffmann Price, Fritz Leiber, Donald Wandrei, among others.

Legacy in Marvel Comics

Lovecraft's work has been adapted several times in various Marvel Comics projects, including one-shots in horror anthologiesduring the 70's, all written or edited by Roy Thomas, a limited-series of one-shots, Haunt of Horror: Lovecraft, written and penciled by Richard Corben, and looser adaptations fully integrated to the Marvel Universe.

Influence on the Marvel Universe

Lovecraft's work has laid the groundwork for many other characters and work of fiction. In Marvel Comics, many of his creations were introduced (often as mere mentions, similarly to the style of the Cthulhu Mythos' cryptic name-droppings, while many subjects and storylines were inspired by his fiction, such as the Serpent-Men of Starkesboro (based on the Deep Ones of Insmouth), Magneto's island-base in the Bermuda Triangle and R'llyeh (among others inspired by R'lyeh), or Chthon (sometimes described as a stand-in for Cthulhu).

Doctor Strange villain and lord of the Great Old Ones Shuma-Gorath is sometimes stated to have inspired by the Lovecraft creation H.P. Lovecraft's creation Shub-Niggurath (a name which possibly inspired Robert E. Howard[3] (the creator of Conan, Kull, Red Sonja, Solomon Kane, and many other characters, as well as another fellow writer, Cthulhu Mythos contributor, and correspondent of Lovecraft) in the short story "The Curse of the Golden Skull" (published posthumously in 1967), where "the Iron-Bound Books of Shuma Gorath" were mentioned.

The Cthulhu Mythos side of the Marvel Universe (whether adapted from Lovecraft's works, or inspired by it) are introduced in a variety of series, but especially through some storylines and characters:

List of adaptations

The following stories and poems of H.P. Lovecraft were adapted more or less closely to the original material:

The reclusive scholar of Providence

Howard Phillips

Appearances in the Marvel Universe

Work History


See Also

Links and References


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