The H.P. Lovecraft Wiki

This subject is written on a topic in the real world and reflects factual information. This subject contains information from the Expanded Cthulhu Mythos, and not based on H.P. Lovecraft's works directly. "The Inhabitant of the Lake" is a short story by British author Ramsey Campbell.


Artist Thomas Cartwright rents a secluded lakeside property in England's Severn Valley, the dark beauty of the location intended to inspire his morbid work. There, nightmares and half-imagined happenings in the night begin to plague him, and he discovers a set of ancient manuscripts which detail the coming of an ancient entity to Earth and it’s activities thereafter. As the strange happenings escalate, Cartwright calls on his friend Alan Kearney for help, and the two attempt to escape the cursed lake. However, only one of them is fortunate to survive the climactic encounter with the creature which dwells in the lake.


  • Thomas Cartwright, a gifted artist specialising in paintings of the macabre.
  • Alan Kearney, the narrator and friend of Cartwight's.
  • Joseph "Joe" Bulger, a friend of Cartwright's, forcibly made a follower of Glaaki.
  • Thomas Lee, one-time leader of the cult of Glaaki.
  • Glaaki, a Great Old One.

Publication History

"The Inhabitant of the Lake" was published in Arkham House's 1964 release The Inhabitant of the Lake and Less Welcome Tenants, and was later reprinted in the collection of short Ramsey Campbell works Cold Print in 1985.

Mythos Connections

  • The story is set in Campbell's fictional Severn Valley setting, the backdrop for much of his Mythos content; Brichester, Goatswood, Temphill and Mercy Hill all feature to some degree.
  • The name of Alhazred is name-dropped in a missive discovered by Cartwright, a nod to the mad Arab Abdul Alhazred, author of the Necronomicon, while Cartwright discovers an 11-volume copy of the Revelations of Glaaki in his new home.
  • References to Yuggoth, Shaggai, Yifne and Tond are all uncovered by Cartwright during his reading of the Revelations of Glaaki.
  • Mythos entities made mention of include Vulthoom, as well as the alien race named the yarkdao and the Tomb-Herd beneath Temphill.
  • The Crystallizers of Dreams are alluded to, as is their guardian.


  • "The Inhabitant of the Lake" sees the first appearance of the Revelations of Glaaki, a source of occult information which would become prominent in the Mythos work of Campbell, among others.