Cover image for An H.P. Lovecraft encyclopedia
An H.P. Lovecraft encyclopedia
Joshi, S. T., 1958-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Westport, Conn. : Greenwood Press, 2001.
Physical Description:
xx, 339 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS3523.O833 Z459 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating

On Order



H. P. Lovecraft (1890-1937) is commonly regarded as the leading author of supernatural fiction in the 20th century. He is distinctive among writers in having a tremendous popular following as well as a considerable and increasing academic reputation as a writer of substance and significance. This encyclopedia is an exhaustive guide to many aspects of Lovecraft's life and work, codifying the detailed research on Lovecraft conducted by many scholars over the past three decades. It includes hundreds of alphabetically arranged entries on Lovecraft and presents extensive bibliographical information.

The volume draws upon rare documents, including thousands of unpublished letters, in presenting plot synopses of Lovecraft's major works, descriptions of characters in his tales, capsule biographies of his major colleagues and family members, and entries on little known features in his stories, such as his imaginary book of occult lore, the Necronomicon. The volume refers to current scholarship on the issues in question and also supplies the literary, topographical, and biographical sources for key elements in Lovecraft's work. As Lovecraft's renown continues to ascend in the 21st century, this encyclopedia will be essential to an understanding of his life and writings.

Author Notes

S. T. JOSHI is the author of H. P. Lovecraft: The Decline of the West (1990), Lord Dunsany: Master of the Anglo-Irish Imagination (Greenwood, 1995), H. P. Lovecraft: A Life (1996), and Ambrose Bierce: A Bibliography of Primary Sources (Greenwood, 1999), which he compiled with David E. Schultz. He has edited the standard edition of Lovecraft's fiction (1984-89, 4 vols.) and many other editions of Lovecraft's work. He is the founder and editor of Lovecraft Studies and Studies in Weird Fiction .

DAVID E. SCHULTZ is a technical editor with an environmental engineering firm. He has edited a critical edition of H. P. Lovecraft's Commonplace Book (1987), and with S. T. Joshi has edited various annotated editions of Lovecraft's letters. He and Joshi also compiled Ambrose Bierce: A Bibliography of Primary Sources (Greenwood, 1999).

Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

An H.P. Lovecraft Encyclopedia, edited by S.T. Joshi and David E. Schultz, will please HPL purists, since it focuses on the weird writer's literary work with entries for individual stories, the more important poems and essays, fictional locales and characters (including every member of the German U-boat crew named in "The Temple"). Although Cthulhu and HPL's other "gods" don't receive separate entries, there's an essay-length entry on the Cthulhu Mythos. Other longer entries concisely treat such topics as HPL's juvenilia, letters and travels, but his philosophy gets short shrift for, as the editors state in their introduction: "No separate entry on Lovecraft's philosophical thought is included here, as the topic is too complex for succinct discussion." Despite such selective coverage, this is an indispensable volume. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Lovecraft scholars Joshi (founder and editor of Lovecraft Studies) and Schultz (editor of H.P. Lovecraft's Commonplace Book) have compiled an accessible yet scholarly general encyclopedia and chronology focusing on prolific fantasy/horror author H.P. Lovecraft (1890-1937). Succinct, alphabetically arranged entries cover Lovecraft's numerous works, which include short stories, sketches, poetry, essays, novels, nonfiction, and letters. Also covered are significant characters, little-known features of the stories, and family members, associates, and critics, as well as people known to have influenced Lovecraft, e.g., Nathaniel Hawthorne. The entries for each work include type of work, word count, estimated date of writing, first publication, first appearance in a volume by Lovecraft, and subsequent appearances in corrected or annotated editions. Plot synopses of Lovecraft's fictional works are included, with at least one citation to a book or article discussing that work. Entries include footnotes and references but no cross references, and the bibliography cites both primary and secondary sources. This detailed encyclopedia is highly recommended for public and academic libraries. Laurie Selwyn, San Antonio P.L., TX (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

Signaled by the increasing number of scholarly works in recent years, Lovecraft's reputation as a writer is being taken more seriously in academic circles. Joshi, the preeminent Lovecraft scholar, coauthored this addition to the literature. A chronology of Lovecraft's life precedes alphabetically arranged entries for literary works, fictional characters, family, friends, colleagues, and writers who influenced him. For literary works (this volume's main focus) the authors include word count, date of writing (when known), first publication date, first appearance in a volume by Lovecraft, and first appearance in annotated or textually corrected editions. Synopses and background information accompany these entries, placing works in the broader context of Lovecraft's literary output. A select bibliography of primary and secondary works is included along with a general index, but there is no exhaustive name index, nor is space given to media adaptations, the "Cthulhu Mythos," or writers influenced by Lovecraft. This book is superior to Phillip A. Shreffler's The H.P. Lovecraft Companion (CH, Feb'78), though illustrations are woefully absent. Recommended for all libraries, particularly those with Lovecraft or Arkham House collections. D. M. Stokes University of Louisiana at Lafayette

Table of Contents

Abbreviations and Short Titles
The Encyclopedia
General Bibliography