Leng, Plateau of

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Plateau of Leng

Origin: H.P. Lovecraft, "The Hound"


The shantak now flew lower, revealing beneath the canopy of cloud a grey barren plain whereon at great distances shone little feeble fires. As they descended there appeared at intervals lone huts of granite and bleak stone villages whose tiny windows glowed with pallid light. And there came from those huts and villages a shrill droning of pipes and a nauseous rattle of crotala which proved at once that Inganok’s people are right in their geographick rumours. For travellers have heard such sounds before, and know that they float only from the cold desert plateau which healthy folk never visit; that haunted place of evil and mystery which is Leng.
— H.P. Lovecraft, The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath

A high arid plateau inhabited by a race of semihuman beings, and also the site of the Elder Pharos and the sinister monastery where dwells a high priest not to be described, who conceals his (or its) face behind a yellow silken mask. Some of its inhabitants participate in a corpse-eating cult whose symbol, a winged hound, may be seen on the amulet of Leng. Leng is described in the Necronomicon and several other tomes.

Heresies and Controversies

The great mystery about Leng is its location. According to "The Hound," and certain unnamed eldritch tomes cited in At the Mountains of Madness, the plateau of Leng is located in central Asia. Professor William Dyer, the narrator of At the Mountains of Madness, argues instead that Leng is identical to the plateau beyond the city of the crinoid Elder Things in Antarctica, while the account of Randolph Carter in The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath places Leng squarely in the Dreamlands, near Inquanok and Sarkomand. Given the ambiguity of space and time in relation to the Great Old Ones, Leng may be in all of these places at once, and perhaps others as well.

Associated Mythos Elements