The mansion of Doctor Stephen Strange is located at 177A Bleecker Street, New York City, NY 10012-1406, on the corner of Bleecker Street and Fenno Place in the heart of Greenwich Village. Also known as the Sanctum Sanctorum, the townhouse has served as the personal residence of Doctor Strange and formerly as the headquarters of the Defenders and the New Avengers. It is also the greatest concentration of occult esoterica and mystical phenomena in existence.
The location itself appears to be a focal point for mystical energies with a nerve center of dragon ley lines running beneath foundations, the veins of magic running through the Earth. Years before any permanent Western European settlements, a powerful Native American Indian Shaman cursed the land to bind the chaos-entity Tyanon to that place and bar her full access to Earth. The site continued to serve as a place for arcane Native American Indian rituals. Shamans of the Wappinger tribe were known to journey here for vision quests.
With the arrival of European colonizers, the site became used for pagan sacrifices. Before any permanent structures were built on the land, it was used as a Potter's field: a mass grave for paupers and inmates from New York's first penitentiary, Newgate Prison. It is unclear who first built on the site, but it housed a Satanic cult that performed human sacrifices. The original structure was destroyed in a fiery blaze, as were the subsequent five buildings on the same plot of land. Over the years, the various buildings were used as a flophouse for beatniks, a notoriously bacchanalian speakeasy, a failed nunnery, and the lair of a Puritan witchfinder who tortured immigrants in the basement. The current structure is actually the seventh building constructed on this site. Its architect and details of its structure remain shrouded in mystery, and the building itself continues to grow and change.
Before being purchased by Doctor Strange, the dwelling gained the local reputation of being haunted. It was the structure's supernatural aura that originally drew Doctor Strange to it when beginning his practice of the mystical arts. Before claiming the mansion as his Sanctum, Strange rid the building of Tyanon and imprisoned her familiar.
The Sanctum Sanctorum is warded by powerful spells cast by Doctor Strange on drawing on the inherent mystical energies of the site. Additionally, Wong serves as a loyal manservant to Doctor Strange and runs the duties of the home.
During the end of Civil War and throughout Dark Reign, an illusion disguised it as decrepit and condemned (soon to be replaced by a Starbucks). This was to protect Strange and the New Avengers, who were using it as a secret base in which to hide from their enemies and from the government-sanctioned Mighty Avengers. After Fear Itself, it was shown to be restored, with Strange and Wong living there openly once again.
Structure & Layout
The Sanctum Sanctorum is a three-story Victorian-style brownstone townhouse built in the French Baroque architecture design with a Mansard roof. Due to its mystical nature, the exact dimensions of the Sanctum Sanctorum are variable allowing the building to seem more spacious on the interior. Additionally, furniture, doorways, corridors, and even entire rooms will move creating a labyrinthine distortion of time and space.
The first floor houses the foyer, drawing room, library, living room, dining room, and Wong's kitchen. The second floor consists of a study, Doctor Strange's private bedchambers, Wong's private bedchambers, and multiple guest quarters. The third floor is composed of the meditation chamber, mystical library, and the storage area for occult artifacts. The Window of the Worlds, large window on the third floor, connects to in the mediation chamber and is decorated with a pattern of the Anomaly Rue, the Seal of the Vishanti. Finally, in the basement are Wong's storage room, the laundry room, and a magical furnace designed Horguun to contain the Flames of the Faltine. There is a utility shaft for servicing the furnace that leads from the basement to the third-floor meditation chamber. An alleyway on the Fenno Place leads to a small courtyard and stables where Valkerie's steed Aragorn is kept.
There is also a bathhouse with waters that few mortal beings can survive, a medical recovery chamber inhabited by ghosts, M.C. Escher-ian staircases, and several doors acting as gateways to other dimensions.
Points of Interest
- Window of the Worlds (also known as the Anomaly Rue or the Seal of the Vishanti)
- Storage Area for Occult Artifacts
- Amulet of Agamotto
- Ancient One's Ring
- Arch of Nihility disguised as a radio
- Atlantean Dreamwave
- Axe of Angarruumus
- Bell of Ikonn
- Black Mirror (formerly)
- Brazier of Bom'Galiath
- Cloak of Levitation
- Coral Crab
- Crimson Bands of Cyttorak
- Crown of Blindness
- Crystal of Kadavus
- Crystal of Conquest
- Dragonfang (formerly)
- Eye of Agamotto
- Gaea Shard
- Hand of the Vishanti
- Horguun's Furnace containing the Flames of the Faltine
- Lamp of Lucifer
- Legendary Amphora
- Levant Rubric
- Oculus Oroboros
- Orb of Agamotto
- Orb of Snnnr
- Pincers of Power
- Purple Gem
- Silver Dagger
- Sling Ring
- Sword of the Ultimate Shadow
- Table-lamp composed of actual serpents
- Third Eye of Horus (formerly)
- Two Gems That Are One
- Wakefield Falchions
- Wand of Watoomb
- Warded box imprisoning Tyanon's Familiar
- Window with constant rain
- Winking wardrobe with a gateway to a demon realm
- Mystical Library Collection
- Book of Cagliostro
- Book of Demonicus
- Book of Eibon
- Book of Fire
- Book of Morphesti
- Book of Shataki
- Book of the Vishanti
- Darkhold (Formerly)
- Diary of Kenneth Ward
- Grimorium Verum
- Grimoire of Watoomb
- Scroll of Eternity
- Scroll of Melsalam
- Scrolls of Watoomb
- Oral Scrolls of Tooli
- Tome of Oshtur
- Unpublished manuscript by the occultist Dion Fortune
- Night Nurse (Linda Carter)
- Magik (Illyana Rasputin)
- New Avengers
Marvel: 1602 (Earth-311)
The House of Stephen Strange, or Sanctum Sanctorum, is a country home located in Greenwich, England, a small village east of London. It is the residence and base of operation for Sir Doctor Stephen Strange and his wife, Clea.
Marvel 2099 (Earth-TRN640 & Earth-TRN591)
When Tempus accidentally temporally teleported herself into the future, the X-Men brought her to the Sanctum Sanctorum of the Sorcerer Supreme Doctor Illyana Rasputin. She trained with Doctor Rasputin and her servant Wagner for seven years, married, and mothered a child; however, when she accidentally temporally teleported to the future again, she was unable to return to her family. Instead she found the Sanctum Sanctorum inhabited by Doctor Anthony Stark, who finally helped her return to her proper time.
Marvel's Spider-Man universe (Earth-1048)
The Sanctum Sanctorum is one of the locations that Spider-Man can take pictures of. When performing this action, Spider-Man states that the place has a "cool window, but I get the feeling something strange is going on in that place", a clear reference to Stephen Strange.
Ultimate Universe (Earth-1610)
After the death of the Ancient One, Doctor Strange relocated to the Sanctum Sanctorum in Greenwich Village to protect the magical items amassed during the Ancient One's long life. Eventually, Stephen Strange, Jr., the son of Doctor Strange and Clea, took up residence in his parents home after their passing and adopted on the mantle of Doctor Strange.
Doctor Strange: The Sorcerer Supreme Animated Film (Earth-2772)
The Sanctum Sanctorum operates as the Ancient One's headquarters in Manhattan with portals linking it to Kamar-Taj, Tibet. The Sanctum Sanctorum also houses the Nexus of All Realities, the center of all other dimensions. The Ancient One and his disciples are charged with defending it from Dormammu and the forces of evil. After becoming the Sorcerer Supreme, Doctor Strange began using the Sanctum Sanctorum as his personal residence and base of operations.
Marvel: Ultimate Alliance (Earth-6109)
The Sanctum Sanctorum is a stage in the game. Though the place can be seen in the map, it is not accessible unless a threat is present in the building.
Larval Earth (Earth-8311)
Dr. Strange's Humorverse analogue, Dr. Deranged, lives in a mansion alternatively called "Secret, unsuspected sanctum sancyouverymuch of Doctor Deranged" and "inner sanctum sanitarium." Aligned with the Humorverse's "rules", the mansion is a comically-based scenario where absurd, funny things happen in the background.
Amalgam Universe (Earth-9602)
Super Hero Squad Show (Earth-91119)
The Sanctum Sanctorum is located in Super Hero City and is the residence and based of Doctor Strange. The Sanctum appears composed of long corridors, ancient suits of armor, and bizarre artwork. The residence also appears to be haunted.
1978 Dr. Strange Cinematic Universe (Earth-96173)
In Earth-96173, the Mansion with the Window of the Worlds is owned by the Sorcerer Supreme Thomas Lindmer. It is also located at 22 Bleecker Street in Greenwich Village, New York City. Stephen Strange and Clea Lake reside in a common flat in the City. Lindmer's pupil, Wong arrived at the Mansion to help defend it against Morgan le Fay. The window itself is not enough to seal the Mansion against intrusion: Lindmer has to manually cast a different spell to block the door against access by le Fay or her minions. Le Fay outwits this by metamorphosing into a cat and tricking Strange to let her in; thus, Strange's aura protects le Fay. Once inside the house, le Fay defeats Wong and Lindmer, and invokes Asmodeus to take Lindmer to the Dark Dimension. However, Strange defeats le Fay and takes Lindmer back to the Mansion. Once there, Lindmer invokes the Ancient One and ritually confers Strange the rank of wizard.
Marvel Cinematic Universe (Earth-199999)
In Earth-199999, the Sanctum is not one, but three different buildings. Each occupying a sight of great power where great cities now occupy, New York, London and Hong Kong. The New York Sanctum is only one of three created by Agamotto and maintained by the Masters of the Mystic Arts. Along with the London Sanctum and the Hong Kong Sanctum, the New York Sanctum acted as a planet-wide mystical defensive ward and as a base from which the Masters of the Mystic Arts conducted their activities. Each building has a central circular window with a logo composed of four slashing curves arranged differently. It has a fixed dimensional portal connecting it to Kamar-Taj in Nepal and a more conventional entrance on a busy street of Manhattan in Greenwich Village. Following the death of Master Daniel Drumm at the hands of Kaecilius and his Zealots, Doctor Strange became the new master and guardian of the New York Sanctum. After being altered due to the return of Loki to Earth, Doctor Strange summoned Thor to the Sanctum in order to get them both off of Earth. With Doctor Strange's assistance, Thor and Loki were reunited with Odin in Norway. When Hulk was sent back to Earth by Heimdall channeling dark magic, he landed in the New York Sanctum with a warning that Thanos was coming. Not long after Banner's arrival, Ebony Maw and Cull Obsidian arrived in their Q-Ship demanding the Time Stone.
- The title "Sanctum Sanctorum" is often used to describe the entire building, but more specifically it can refer to the third floor meditation chamber with access to Window of the Worlds.
- The origins of the Sanctum are explored in Doctor Strange: From the Marvel Vault #1.
- Although Doctor Strange and Wong were revealed to be living in Greenwich Village in their first appearance in Strange Tales #110, the exterior of the building in which they lived was not shown until Strange Tales #117.
- Roy Thomas, Gary Friedrich, and Bill Everett all once lived at 177A Bleecker Street, which inspired Thomas to make it the address of Strange's home.
- The 177a Bleecker Street that exists in the real world is in the middle of a block, between MacDougal Street and Sullivan Street, and there doesn't seem to be a road called Fenno Place anywhere in the city.
- The phrase "sanctum sanctorum" is Latin and is generally translated to mean "Holy of Holies". Alternative translations can also include "the holy place of holy things" and "the most holy [place/thing]".
- The Seal of the Vishanti, the pattern that most notoriously decorates the Sanctum's Window of Worlds, was designed by Steve Ditko as an homage to the design of a window present in Will Eisner's The Spirit.
- 837 appearance(s) of Sanctum Sanctorum
- 3 appearance(s) in handbook(s) of Sanctum Sanctorum
- 27 minor appearance(s) of Sanctum Sanctorum
- 27 mention(s) of Sanctum Sanctorum
- 8 mention(s) in handbook(s) of Sanctum Sanctorum
- 91 image(s) of Sanctum Sanctorum
Links and References
- Real world street views of 177A Bleecker Street, New York City, NY 10012-1406:
- Marvel.com's Sanctum Sanctorum article