The Man of Stone" is a short story by H. P. Lovecraft and Hazel Heald in October 1932. It is one of five stories Lovecraft revised for Heald. Heald had been introduced to Lovecraft by his Providence friend Muriel E. Eddy (see C. M. Eddy, Jr.).
The story describes the narrator's search for the missing sculptor Arthur Wheeler who disappeared in the Upper Adirondacks. Inspired by the discovery of lifelike statues of a dog and a man in Wheeler's style Ben Hayden persuades the narrator to travel with him to the small, secretive village of Mountain Top. While there they learn that Arthur fell foul of the sinister "Mad Dan" over the latter's wife Rose and that none of the three had been seen in town since. From there they went to see the statues in Allen's Cave that triggered the hunt and find what can only be the petrified body of Wheeler himself. Determined to confront "Mad Dan" they head up to his cabin but only find two more eerie statues and a diary.
At this point the book switches to Dan's diary which details how he uncovered the affair between Wheeler and Rose and uses his occult background and the Book of Eibon to wreak his revenge. Choosing a potion that turns living things to stone he tests it on birds and Rose's dog Rex before successfully tricking Wheeler into drinking it. However Rose is more suspicious and has to be locked in the attic and starved in an effort to force her to drink. Eventually the handwriting in the diary changes and Rose explains how she escaped without drinking enough to kill her and, having read Dan's notes, manages to tie him to a chair in his sleep and pour the potion down his throat. Largely paralyzed and alone she closes by asking to be buried with Wheeler and Rex before drinking the last of the potion.
The narrator who follows his friend Ben Hayden on his search for Arthur Wheeler.
A highly talented sculptor described as a "solid photographer" and settled in the Upper Adirondacks to blast and cut rock for his statues. He stayed with "Mad Dan" and his wife who he fell in love with before being murdered by Dan.
Described as the Pythias to Jack's Damon he's incredibly stubborn and adventurous.
A friend of Jack and Ben who discovered the strange statues while under treatment beyond Lake Placid.
A cagey villager in Mountain Top who is coaxed into giving information on Wheeler's disappearance.
"Mad Dan" MorrisEdit
A disturbed occultist and source of fear in the area of Mountain Top. As well as forcing his wife to take part in Rites on Roodmas and Hallow Mass he conducted sacrifices of black goats on Hallow Eve (Only stopped by locals from doing the Great Rite to open "the Gate") and worshiped the Outer God Shub-Niggurath and the Great Old One Tsathoggua. As well as a possible murder on Thunder Hill he killed Arthur Wheeler and attempted to kill his wife who eventually killed him.
Rose C. MorrisEdit
The wife of "Mad Dan" and eldest daughter of Osborne Chandler. After years of abuse and being forced to participate in occult rituals she found comfort in a relationship with Arthur Wheeler. When Dan tried to kill her for it she turns his own poison against him and commits suicide.
Osborne E. ChandlerEdit
Rose's father who may have been tricked into allowing Dan to make her his wife.
The Van Kauran FamilyEdit
The ancestors of "Mad Dan" on his mother's side.
Nicholas Van KauranEdit
A wizard who made a deal with the "Black Man" before being hanged in Wijtgaart in 1587. The original owner of "Mad Dan's" Book of Eibon which escaped the notice of the soldiers that captured him.
William Van KauranEdit
The grandson of Nicholas Van Kauran who carried the Book of Eibon to Rensselaerwyck and later Esopus. He and his family gained a reputation in Kingston and Hurley as people not to cross.
Bareut Picterse Van KauranEdit
The great-grandfather of "Mad Dan" and attendee of the Great Sabbat on Sugar-Loaf in the Catskills. At one point the keeper of the family's Book of Eibon who added the insert at page 679 about the potion that turns living things to stone which he used on a man called Squire Hasbruck in New Paltz, 1834. He disspeared from the same city 5 years later in 1839.
Driven up river to the cabin near Mountain Top by the people of Esopus.