Today’s look into the secrets of the Royal Occultist focuses on one of the most potent artefacts in St. Cyprian’s possession…
It took something from him, to employ the Glyph. It was like a tuning fork for the psychical, and it made his soul shiver in him…
-The Whitechapel Demon (2013)
The Monas Glyph was supposedly created by Dr. John Dee in the rein of Elizabeth the First. The esoteric sigil is made of blackened silver, stiffened with copper wire, and is roughly the size of an athame or ritual dagger. It is shaped like a composite of various astrological and religious symbols, combining ankh, cruciform and crescent into a single shape.
The Glyph acts both as psychical conductor and amplifier, focusing and strengthening the latent psychic and/or spiritual abilities of the wielder for a brief period. As well as strengthening the gifts of its bearer, the Glyph contains its own innate power, and the merest sight of it is often enough to banish or drive back the most malign of spirits.
It is a potent artefact, but one that the various holders of the offices of Royal Occultist have rarely employed, save in the direst need due to the Glyph’s draining effect on its wielder. To use it for too long, or improperly could result in fatigue, madness or even death.
Nevertheless, Carnacki used it at least three times to exorcise monstrosities from the Outer Spheres, including during the Gogmagog Incident of 1914, and Dee was said to have employed it in putting paid to the last English dragon.
St. Cyprian himself has used the Glyph only a few times in his career, most notably during the events revolving around a 1920 confrontation with the monstrous doppelganger of one of London’s most notorious killers.
The Monas Glyph is one of a number of mystic artefacts that have appeared in the Royal Occultist stories and novels. It’s an homage to Doctor Occult’s Symbol of Seven, with a bit of Doctor Strange’s Eye of Agamotto thrown in. As the link above shows, the glyph itself has some historical basis – not as a magical weapon – but as an alchemical and philosophical symbol. I like to tie that sort of thing into these stories when I can, if only because I find it interesting.
Like most of the artefacts in these stories, it came about because I needed a solution to a particular problem – in this case, the daemonic Flea, from The Whitechapel Demon. Having solved that problem, it seemed a bit wasteful to never mention the Monas Glyph again. Hence its occasional reappearance. But, appropriately for such a powerful item, it only comes into play in the most dire of circumstances, notably whenever monstrous entities such as Nephren-Ka or Helen Strix show up.
The Monas Glyph has appeared in the following stories:
- “Monmouth’s Giants”
- THE WHITECHAPEL DEMON
- “The Strix Society”
- “The Door of Eternal Night”
- “The Teeth of Winter”
- “Terror on the Links”
- “The Roaring Ship”
For more on the adventures of St. Cyprian and Gallowglass, as well as past and future holders of the office, take a look at the Royal Occultist chronology on this site, as well as a number of free short stories, available only on Patreon. And be sure to ‘Like’ the Royal Occultist Facebook page, in order to keep up with all the latest news and info on the series!