© Adam Crossingham
There are instances of carved or decorated black stones throughout history and geography. The tradition continues in the Mythos from the Real World. In both places dark seals and stones are worshipped and/or feared. Black seals or stones are representations or conveyors of lost knowledge that should have been forgotten long ago. But the seals continue into the present day, allowing the potential corruption that their lost knowledge brings with them to seep into the present day...
The Seal of Nephren-Ka is a curious object of dull, black metal, found only in the Crypt of Nephren-Ka, the Secret Place, "the Place of the Blind Apes where Nephren-Ka bindeth up the threads of truth". Nephren-Ka was supposedly trying to flee Ancient Egypt for Britain in the far west when trapped by his enemies. One of his followers may have made the journey to safety with the Seal.
A large black stone symbolised Cybele or the Magna Mater. The cult and its sacred stone moved from Pessino in Phrygia to Rome, after it was found that the Sybilline Books foretold victory against the Carthaginians if the Magna Mater was brought to Rome. The holy stone was regarded as the centre of creation. It was believed that the sacred stone was filled with the life-giving power of the Great Mother, and a priestess could tap this by caressing them and praying to Her. Today, the great temple of Magna Mater lies below St. Peter's Cathedral and the Black Stone may still be buried there, influencing modern worshippers in the same way Exham Priory affected its last owners.
The Latin geographer Solinus writes of the stone Hexecontalithos or the Sixtystone, and the aboriginal tribe that worshipped it: "This folk dwells in remote and secret places, and celebrates foul mysteries on savage hills. Nothing have they in common with men save the face, and the customs of humanity are wholly strange to them; and they hate the sun. They hiss rather than speak; their voices are harsh, and not to be heard without fear. They boast of a certain stone, which they call Sixtystone; for they say that it displays sixty characters. And this stone has a secret unspeakable name; which is Ixaxar".
Professor Gregg came into possession of this stone later known as the Black Seal. It was found near the site of ancient Babylon. The Black Seal is a piece of dull black stone, two inches long from the handle to the stamp; the stamping end is a rough hexagon an inch and a quarter in diameter. The Black Seal is marked with sixty arrow-headed characters of a cuneiform pattern that are strikingly different to normal cuneiform. Professor Gregg disappeared in 1895 after trying to contact the Little People whose language was written in the arrow-headed cuneiform found on the seal, and who knew the stone as "Ishakshar". Some say that the Sixtystone's myriad inscriptions describes Iod the Hunter of Souls.
The Children of the Night or the Little People worshipped the Black Stone that was kept on an altar of human skulls in Dagon's Cave. The Little People's Black Stone had once been worshipped at Stonehenge but was taken with the Little People as they retreated from the onslaught of the Celts as they populated the British Isles. Some tales say that a person able to steal the Black Stone can demand a service in return for the stone from the Little People, but they are a vengeful lot and such a request would surely doom the thief. Perhaps this is what happened to poor Professor Gregg?
Al-Hajar al-Aswad - the black stone from Heaven, and the fifth pillar of Islam is fixed in one of the corners of the Ka'ba that stands in the centre of the Great Mosque at Mecca. Tradition holds that the Black Stone was a meteorite and was white in colour when it first landed and then blackened. The faithful attribute this to the belief that the stone absorbs the sins of the pilgrims, but it is consistent with known meteorites oxidising over time. To Muslims the meteorite, a stone from heaven, symbolizes the original covenant between God and human beings. The black stone represents the invisible right hand of God. The stone is also known as "the stone which the builders refused". Today it is encased in a silver band to hold the fragments together, but is reminiscent of female genitalia, which is oddly apt since Mecca was a place of worship of the Goddess before the coming of Islam. Which in turns takes us back to the Magna Mater.
John Dee's Necronomicon has an illustration of the Black Seal of Irahn or Iraan, which reputedly has the power, together with the Mao rite and the letter of Nug-Soth, to open the gate to the place of the S'glhuo. This object was reputedly brought to Earth by the Fungi from Yuggoth and came into the possession of the Muvian sorcerer Iraan and then Zanthu. The seal is inscribed with the Seven Signs of Terror that can command the obedience of any creature, possibly any entity.
In the 1920s Henry Akely found a great black stone on Round Hill in Windham County, Vermont decorated with strange hieroglyphics. The stone possessed a somewhat irregularly curved surface of one by two feet. The overall shape of the stone is artificial and has been cut to a strange and alien design. The hieroglyphics on the surface are suggestive of a mad half-existence before the earth and the other inner worlds of the solar system were made. The Fungi from Yuggoth made much effort to recover the stone from Akely because of the secrets and power that the stone possessed; the stone originally came from Yuggoth. Perhaps the Black Seal of Irahn is related to Akely's dark stone?
A massive monolith can be found in the mountains of Hungary, the Black Stone of Stregoicavar. This ancient stone is octagonal, 16 feet high, and one and a half feet thick. Once it was highly polished, now it is thickly dinted. Unknown characters spiral round it to the top, these are almost blotted out for the first ten feet and are still more or less defaced higher up. The characters are of in no language now remembered on earth, but its polished surfaces create an illusion of semi transparency. Those who have the misfortune to sleep too close to the monolith are plagued with foul dreams or worse.
Another black stone, the Black Stone of Zimbabwe "was a ten-sided mass of flinty, almost crystalline black stone... Meteoric iron... each of the ten angled sides was a sleek plane of glistening black, covered with column on column of minute characters or hieroglyphics" One side has a "weird, stylised profile figure of a monstrous thing like a hideous bird with staring eyes and a gaping beak filled with fangs". Doctor Mayhew who discovered the stone deciphered the script carved into the stone, the 'Zimbabwean Rituals'. These rituals covered the worship of Yig, Mnomquah, and Golgoroth and the summoning of the Fishers from Outside, the Shantaks.
The Zegembri Seals are jet-black stones carved with undecipherable characters. The Seals are said to predate the time of Sumer, and Sumerian priest-kings used them to call to Earth 'dark gods'. The Seals passed eventually to Europe where witch cults used them to summon abominations. The similarity between the Zegembri Seals and the Black Seal of Irahn is striking, and the two may be the same.
These seals all share similar characteristics: they are dark coloured, they are of great age and unknown provenance, and they are decorated in an unknown script that holds great secrets. Beware if you come into possession of one, as misfortune is sure to follow...