The Cthulhu Mythos Timeline

banner art for the cthulhu mythos timeline

H. P. Lovecraft pioneered the concept of cosmic horror, this idea that we are completely powerless in the presence of dark, god-like beings. While his mythos wasn’t exactly what we would now call a shared universe today, his ideas permeate his many stories, and fans have since found ways to piece them all together into a single continuity. This is the Cthulhu Mythos timeline.

What’s on the Cthulhu Mythos timeline?

“The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown.” – H. P. Lovecraft.

This timeline takes all of the works of H. P. Lovecraft that are set in the Cthulhu Mythos, or at least have undertones of the Mythos, and places them in chronological order. This includes collaborations and stories he wrote under a pseudonym.

Defining what is “canon” for the Cthulhu Mythos is not easy, and most would say that there shouldn’t be a canon at all, that Lovecraft’s work wasn’t meant to be a single shared universe, like we like to think of it today. Instead, Lovecraft created a number of themes and a few eldritch elements that appear throughout his work, even though he never really intended for this to implicate that it was all the same universe.

Nevertheless, that hasn’t stopped fans from piecing it all together, and this timeline is the result of our research into that finished piece. We hope you enjoy.

Where to Start?

There is not great way to start delving into the Cthulhu Mythos. Chronological is one way to do it, but there’s not clear advatage to this. You could also go by publication date, but that doesn’t necessarily reflect the order in which they were written. However, most people do tend to agree that the following stories make up the core of this universe. We’d recommend you start with these:

  • The Call of Cthulhu
  • The Dunwich Horror
  • The Whisperer in Darkness
  • At the Mountains of Madness
  • The Shadow Over Innsmouth
  • The Shadow Out of Time
  • The Haunter of the Dark

If you like this timeline, we recommend visiting some of our others, such as the Stephen King Multiverse timeline.

#AmazonNameMediaWriterDate PublishedTimeNotes
1The Noble Eavesdropper (lost)Short StoryH.P. Lovecraft1897-01-011897?Lost
2BuyThe Little Glass BottleShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1959-01-011897
3BuyThe Secret Cave or John Lees AdventureShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1959-01-011898
4BuyThe Mystery of the Grave-YardShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1959-01-011898
5The Haunted House (lost)Short StoryH.P. Lovecraft1898-01-011898/1902Lost
6The Secret of the Grave (lost)Short StoryH.P. Lovecraft1898-01-011898/1902Lost
7John, the Detective (lost)Short StoryH.P. Lovecraft1898-01-011898/1902Lost
8BuyThe Mysterious ShipShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1959-01-011902
9BuyThe Beast in the CaveShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1918-06-011905, April 21
10The Picture (lost)Short StoryH.P. Lovecraft1907-01-011907Lost
11BuyThe AlchemistShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1916-11-011908
12BuyThe TombShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1922-03-011917, June
13BuyDagonShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1919-11-011917, July
14BuyA Reminiscence of Dr. Samuel JohnsonShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1917-11-011917
15BuySweet ErmengardeShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1943-01-011917
16BuyPolarisShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1920-12-011918, May?
17The Mystery of Murdon Grange (lost)Short StoryH.P. Lovecraft1918-01-011918Lost
18BuyThe Green MeadowShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Winifred V. Jackson1927-03-011918/19
19BuyBeyond the Wall of SleepShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1919-10-011919
20BuyMemoryShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1919-06-011919
21BuyOld BugsShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1959-01-011919
22BuyThe Transition of Juan RomeroShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1944-01-011919, September 16
23BuyThe White ShipShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1919-11-011919, November
24BuyThe Doom That Came to SarnathShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1920-06-011919, December 3
25BuyThe Statement of Randolph CarterShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1920-05-011919, December
26BuyThe Terrible Old ManShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1921-07-011920, January 28
27BuyThe TreeShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1921-10-011920
28BuyThe Cats of UltharShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1920-11-011920, June 15
29BuyThe TempleShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1925-09-011920
30BuyFacts concerning the Late Arthur Jermyn and His FamilyShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1921-03-011920
31BuyThe StreetShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1920-12-011920
32Life and Death (lost)Short StoryH.P. Lovecraft1920-01-011920Lost
33BuyPoetry and the GodsShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Anna Helen Crofts1920-09-011920
34BuyCelephaïsShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1922-05-011920, early November
35BuyFrom BeyondShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1934-06-011920, November 16
36BuyNyarlathotepShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1920-11-011920, early December
37BuyThe Picture in the HouseShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1919-07-011920, December 12
38BuyThe Crawling ChaosShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Winifred V. Jackson1921-04-011920/21
39BuyEx OblivioneShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1921-03-011920/21
40BuyThe Nameless CityShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1921-11-011921, January
41BuyThe Quest of IranonShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1935-08-011921, February 28
42BuyThe Moon-BogShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1926-06-011921, March
43BuyThe OutsiderShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1926-04-011921
44BuyThe Other GodsShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1933-11-011921, August 14
45BuyThe Music of Erich ZannShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1922-03-011921, December
46BuyHerbert West—ReanimatorShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1922-02-011921, September to mid-1922
47BuyHypnosShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1923-05-011922, March
48BuyWhat the Moon BringsShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1923-05-011922, June 5
49BuyAzathothShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1938-01-011922, June
50BuyThe Horror at Martin’s BeachShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Sonia H. Greene1923-11-011922, June
51BuyThe HoundShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1924-02-011922, September
52BuyThe Lurking FearShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1923-01-011922, November
53BuyThe Rats in the WallsShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1924-03-011923, August–September
54BuyThe UnnamableShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1925-07-011923, September
55BuyAshesShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, C.M. Eddy1924-03-011923
56BuyThe Ghost-EaterShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, C.M. Eddy1924-04-011923
57BuyThe Loved DeadShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, C.M. Eddy1924-07-011923
58BuyThe FestivalShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1925-01-011923, October
59BuyDeaf, Dumb, and BlindShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, C.M. Eddy1925-04-011924?
60BuyUnder the PyramidsShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Harry Houdini1924-07-011924, February–March
61BuyThe Shunned HouseShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1928-01-011924, October 16–19
62BuyThe Horror at Red HookShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1927-01-011925, August 1–2
63BuyHeShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1926-09-011925, August 11
64BuyIn the VaultShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1925-11-011925, September 18
65BuyThe DescendantShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1938-01-011926?
66BuyCool AirShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1928-03-011926, March
67BuyThe Call of CthulhuShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1928-02-011926, Summer
68BuyTwo Black BottlesShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Wilfred Blanch Talman1927-08-011926, July–October
69BuyPickman’s ModelShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1927-10-011926
70BuyThe Silver KeyShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1929-01-011926
71BuyThe Strange High House in the MistShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1931-10-011926, November 9
72BuyThe Dream-Quest of Unknown KadathShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1943-01-011926, Autumn? to 1927, January 22
73BuyThe Case of Charles Dexter WardShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1941-07-011927, January to March 1
74BuyThe Colour out of SpaceShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1927-09-011927, March
75BuyThe Very Old FolkShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1940-06-011927, November 2
76BuyThe Thing in the MoonlightShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1941-01-011927, November 25
77BuyThe Last TestShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Adolphe de Castro1928-11-011927
78BuyHistory of the NecronomiconShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1937-11-011927
79BuyThe Curse of YigShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Zealia Bishop1929-11-011928
80BuyIbidShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1938-01-011928
81BuyThe Dunwich HorrorShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1929-04-011928, Summer
82BuyThe Electric ExecutionerShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Adolphe de Castro1930-08-011929?
83BuyThe MoundShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Zealia Bishop1940-11-011929, December to early 1930
84BuyMedusa’s CoilShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Zealia Bishop1938-01-011930, May
85BuyThe Whisperer in DarknessShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1931-08-011930, February 24 to September 26
86BuyAt the Mountains of MadnessShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1936-02-011931, February to March 22
87BuyThe Shadow over InnsmouthShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1936-01-011931, November? to December 3
88BuyThe TrapShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Henry S. Whitehead1932-03-01late 1931
89BuyThe Dreams in the Witch HouseShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1933-07-011932, January to February 28
90BuyThe Man of StoneShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Hazel Heald1932-10-011932
91BuyThe Horror in the MuseumShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Hazel Heald1933-07-011932, October
92BuyThrough the Gates of the Silver KeyShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, E. Hoffmann Price1934-07-011932, October to 1933, April
93BuyWinged DeathShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Hazel Heald1934-03-011933
94BuyOut of the AeonsShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Hazel Heald1935-04-011933
95BuyThe Thing on the DoorstepShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1937-01-011933, August 21–24
96BuyThe Evil ClergymanShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1939-04-011933, October
97BuyThe Horror in the Burying-GroundShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Hazel Heald1937-05-011933/35
98BuyThe Hoard of the Wizard-BeastShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, R.H. Barlow1994-10-011933
99BuyThe Slaying of the MonsterShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, R.H. Barlow1994-10-011933
100BuyThe BookShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1938-01-01late 1933?
101BuyThe Tree on the HillShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Duane W. Rimel1940-09-011934, May
102BuyThe Battle that Ended the CenturyShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, R.H. Barlow1934-01-011934, June
103BuyThe Shadow out of TimeShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1936-06-011934, November to 1935, March
104BuyTill A’ the SeasShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, R.H. Barlow1935-06-011935, January
105BuyCollapsing CosmosesShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, R.H. Barlow1938-01-011935, June
106BuyThe Challenge from BeyondShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, C.L. Moore, A. Merritt, Robert E. Howard, Frank Belknap Long1935-09-011935, August
107BuyThe DisintermentShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Duane W. Rimel1937-01-011935, September
108BuyThe Diary of Alonzo TyperShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, William Lumley1938-02-011935, October
109BuyThe Haunter of the DarkShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft1936-12-011935, November
110BuyIn the Walls of EryxShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, Kenneth Sterling1939-10-011936, January
111BuyThe Night OceanShort StoryH.P. Lovecraft, R.H. Barlow1936-12-011936, Autumn?

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