Gustaf Johansen is a fictional character created by H. P. Lovecraft, who makes his first appearance in the 1928 short story "The Call of Cthulhu". He is a Norwegian sailor "of some intelligence," and the second mate of the Emma of Auburn, whose home address was in Oslo's Old Town. En route to Callao, the Emma encounters the heavily armored steam yacht Alert, who orders the schooner to turn back. Captain Collins refuses, leading the Alert to fire upon the Emma using a brass cannon. In retaliation, the crew of the Emma manage to board the Alert and slay all of its members, although Collins and First Mate Green are killed in the battle, leaving Johansen in command of the crew. He dies shortly after his return from the South Pacific in 1925; his papers, found posthumously, provide the only first-hand account of Cthulhu in Lovecraft's fiction. His report was written in English to spare his wife from learning the horror of Cthulhu.

Behind the MythosEdit

  • Robert M. Price suggests that Johansen's nationality is a tip of the hat to the Draugen, a creature from Norwegian folklore, for helping to inspire Cthulhu. (EXP: "The Other Name of Azathoth")


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