Eleventh Month
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Passage Hand
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Year 10,171 Contasta Ar


Reptiles



Here are relevant references from the Books where reptiles are mentioned.
It is not meant to be anything other than the facts of the matter.
Arrive at your own conclusions.

I wish you well,
Fogaban



     Dragons (opens another page)
     Lizard
     Snake
          Barn
          Hith
          Marsh Moccasin
          Ost
               Banded
               Ushindi
          Water
     Tharlarion
          Alar
          Black
          Draft
          Gigantic
          High
          Hunting
          Land
          Long
          Long-Necked, Paddle-Finned
          Marsh
          Racing
          River
          Rock
          Saddle
          Sea
          Sewer
          Short-Legged, Long-Bodied
          Six-Toed
          Tiny
          War
          Water
          Wild
          Winged - Ul
     Toad
     Turtle
          Hook-Beak
          Marsh
          Vosk
     Ul
 


Lizards
To The Top


The tarn is one of the two most common mounts of a Gorean warrior; the other is the high tharlarion, a species of saddle-lizard, used mostly by clans who have never mastered tarns.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 52


"May the Priest-Kings blast your bones," I shouted, as cheerfully as I could, adding, for good measure, "and may you thrive upon the excrement of tharlarions!" The latter recommendation, with its allusion to the loathed riding lizards used by many of the primitive clans of Gor, seemed to please him.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 78


The tharlarion sunk a bit lower in the marsh, half closing its eyes. I knew the fight was over. More of the colorless exudate was seeping from its throat. About its flanks, as it settled into the mud, there was a stirring in the water, and I realized the small water lizards of the swamp forest were engaged in their grisly work. I bent down and washed the blade of my sword as well as I could in the green water, but my tunic was so splattered and soaked that I had no way to dry the blade. Accordingly, carrying the sword in my hand, I waded back to the foot of the swamp tree and climbed the small, dry knoll at its base.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 85


Idly, with repulsion, I watched the body of the tharlarion in the swamp. As the water lizards had fed, the carcass, lightened, had shifted position, rolling in the water. Now, in a matter of minutes, the skeleton was visible, picked almost clean, the bones gleaming except where small lizards skittered about on them, seeking a last particle of flesh.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 86


"Why?" I asked. After all, according to the rude codes of Gor, I owed her nothing, indeed, considering her attempt on my life, which had been foiled only by the fortuitous net of Nar's web, I would have been within my rights to slay her, abandoning her body to the water lizards. Naturally, I was not looking at things from precisely the Gorean point of view, but she would have no way of knowing that. How could she know that I would not treat her as - according to the rough justice of Gor - she deserved?
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 92


In a minute the rider appeared in view - a fine, bearded warrior with a golden helmet and a tharlarion lance. He drew the riding lizard to a halt a few paces from me. He rode the species of tharlarion called the high tharlarion, which ran on its two back feet in great bounding strides. Its cavernous mouth was fined with long, gleaming teeth. Its two small, ridiculously disproportionate forelegs dangled absurdly in front of its body.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 115

In those days I learned to master the high tharlarion, one of which had been assigned to me by the caravan's tharlarion master. These gigantic lizards had been on Gor for a thousand generations before the first tarn was tamed, and were raised from the leathery shell to carry warriors. They responded to voice signals, conditioned into their tiny brains in the training years. Nonetheless, the butt of one's lance, striking about the eye or ear openings, for there are few other sensitive areas in their scaled hides, is occasionally necessary to impress your will on the monster.

The high tharlarions, unlike their draft brethren, the slow-moving, four-footed broad tharlarions, were carnivorous. However, their metabolism was slower than that of a tarn, whose mind never seemed far from food and, if it was available, could consume half its weight in a single day. Moreover, they needed far less water than tarns. To me, the most puzzling thing about the domesticated tharlarions, and the way in which they differed most obviously from wild tharlarions and the lizards of my native planet, was their stamina, their capacity for sustained movement. When the high tharlarion moves slowly, its stride is best described as a proud, stalking movement, each great clawed foot striking the earth with a measured rhythm. When urged to speed, however, the high tharlarion bounds, in great leaping movements that carry it twenty paces at a time.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Pages 124 - 125


The death would not be a pleasant one. Bound helplessly, without food or water, my own body would torture me by its weight dragging on the hand and ankle rope suspended a few inches above the roiling, muddy surface under the fiery sun. I knew that I would not, some days hence reach the delta of the Vosk and the cities in the delta except perhaps as a bound corpse, withered by exposure and the lack of water. Indeed, it was unlikely my body would reach the delta at all. It was far more likely that one of the water lizards of the Vosk or one of the great hook-beaked turtles of the river would seize my body and drag it and the frame under the water, destroying me in the mud below. There was also the chance that a wild tarn might swoop down and feed on the helpless living morsel fastened to that degrading frame. Of one thing I was certain there would be no human assistance or even pity, for the poor wretches on the frames are none but villains, betrayers, and blasphemers against the Priest-Kings, and it is a sacrilegious act even to consider terminating their sufferings.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Pages 138 - 139


Glancing about to see that no one was watching, I lightly climbed the fence of woven branches and dropped down inside among a group of the broad tharlarions. I had carefully determined that the corral into which I dropped did not contain the saddle lizards, the high tharlarions, those ridden by Kazrak and his tharlarion lancers. Such lizards are extremely short-tempered, as well as carnivorous, and I had no intention of attracting attention to myself by beating my way through them with a spear butt.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 166


It too had frozen, probably sensing my presence. Most likely it was a sleen, hopefully a young one. I guessed it had not been hunting me or I would not have been likely to have smelled it. It would have approached from upwind. Perhaps I stood thus for six or seven minutes. I then I saw it, on its six short legs, undulate across the road, like a furred lizard, its pointed, whiskered snout swaying from side to side testing the wind.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 34


A shudder involuntarily shook me, though I do not know if this was due to the cold and the rain or the sight of the long, furred lizardlike body that lay at my feet. I tried to extract the spear but it was wedged between the ribs of the animal.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 37


I would have given much for a tarn in my journey, though I knew no tarn would fly into the mountains. For some reason neither the fearless hawklike tarns, nor the slow-witted tharlarions, the draft and riding lizards of Gor, would enter the mountains. The tharlarions become unmanageable and though the tarn will essay the flight the bird almost immediately becomes disoriented, uncoordinated, and drops screaming back to the plains below.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 48


I had been disturbed by this conversation and without really intending it had begun to walk to the walls. I stood before the great gate of Tharna. The two giant beams that barred it were in place, beams that could only be moved by a team of broad tharlarions, draft lizards of Gor, or by a hundred slaves. The gates, bound with their bands of steel, studded with brass plates dull in the mist, the black wood looming over me in the dusk, were closed.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Pages 75 - 76


The tarn had struck a field of some sort, which perhaps acted on the mechanism of his inner ear, resulting in the loss of balance and coordination. A similar device, I supposed, might prevent the entry of high tharlarions, the saddle lizards of Gor, into the mountains. In spite of myself I admired the Priest-Kings. I knew now that it was true, what I had been told, that those who entered the mountains would do so on foot.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 182


Then the smell of a cooking fire came to my nostrils. I heard the hum of unhurried conversation. Through the trees I could see tent canvas, a tharlarion wagon, the strap-masters unharnessing a brace of low tharlarions, the huge, herbivorous draft lizards of Gor. For all I could tell neither of them had heard the scream, or paid it any attention.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 185


Many are the objects for sale at the fair. I passed among wines and textiles and raw wool, silks, and brocades, copperware and glazed pottery, carpets and tapestries, lumber, furs, hides, salt, arms and arrows, saddles and harness, rings and bracelets and necklaces, belts and sandals, lamps and oils, medicines and meats and grains, animals such as the fierce tarns, Gor's winged mounts, and tharlarions, her domesticated lizards, and long chains of miserable slaves, both male and female.
Priest-Kings of Gor     Book 3     Page 12


I crossed the Cartius on a barge, one of several hired by the merchant of the caravan with which I was then serving. These barges, constructed of layered timbers of Ka-la-na wood, are towed by teams of river tharlarion, domesticated, vast, herbivorous, web-footed lizards raised and driven by the Cartius bargemen, fathers and sons, interrelated clans, claiming the status of a caste for themselves
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Pages 3 - 4 (footnotes)


She looked at me and laughed, and then, on her back, began to move gracefully toward the opposite end of the pool. Once she stopped, seeing that I was not yet following. She, I noted, had not been hurrying. I knew that she could, if she wished, swim like a water lizard making a strike.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Pages 161 - 162


The vicious, six-legged sleen, large-eyed, sinuous, mammalian but resembling a furred, serpentine lizard, was a indefatigable hunter. He could follow a scent days old with ease, and then, perhaps hundreds of pasangs, days, later, be unleashed for the sport of the hunters, tear his victim to pieces.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 105


The sleen has six legs. It is long, sinuous; it resembles a lizard, save that it is furred and mammalian.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 155


I thought of the fierce sleen, with their fangs and blazing eyes, long-bodied, six-legged, like a furred lizard.
Hunters of Gor     Book 8     Page 157


I thought, seeing it, holding itself closely to the ground, but yet free of the ground, that it might be a long-bodied lizard. Then, as moonlight fell through the tree branches in a pattern across its snout and neck, I saw not scales, but rippled fur, long and thick. Its eyes caught the light and flashed like burning copper. It snarled. I gasped. It had six legs. It was perhaps twenty feet in length, perhaps eleven hundred pounds in weight. It approached sinuously, hissing.
Slave Girl of Gor     Book 11     Page 39


It is trackless and treacherous, and the habitat of marsh tharlarion and the predatory Ul, a winged lizard with wing-spans of several feet.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 26


In the second level, that of the canopies, is found an incredible variety of birds, warblers, finches, mindars, the crested lit and the common lit, the fruit tindel, the yellow gim, tanagers, some varieties of parrot, and many more. Here, too, may be found snakes and monkeys, gliding urts, leaf urts, squirrels, climbing, long-tailed porcupines, lizards, sloths, and the usual varieties of insects, ants, centipedes, scorpions, beetles and flies, and so on.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 311


We heard, outside, the screaming of a predatory ul, a gigantic, toothed, winged lizard, soaring over the marshes.
Savages of Gor     Book 17     Page 18


It was drawn by a single tharlarion, a broad tharlarion, one of Gor's quadrupedal draft lizards.
Kajira of Gor     Book 19     Page 104


It seemed so open, and beautiful, and free, though, to be sure, I within it was a slave. I was startled, and a little frightened, even, by the strange, scaled, long-necked, placid, lizardlike quadruped that drew the wagon. These might be human beings, here, but I was not on Earth.
Dancer of Gor     Book 22     Page 104


Suddenly from my right emergent out of the dusk so quick so fierce so fast so large its head perhaps two feet in width the head large triangular its eyes blazing lunging toward the bars big the thing a hideous noise bars body pressing scratching I leaping back, screaming, it biting at the bars the fangs white grinding on the metal the snout thrusting against them the snarling, it couldn't get through, the growling the snarling I falling back twisting crying out then terrified on my hands and knees seeing it long thick like a gigantic furred thing snakelike lizardlike the thing it had sex legs its snout then pushing under the bottom crosspiece of the gate, trying to pry it up, to get at me I screaming!
Witness of Gor     Book 26     Page 122


It was a large, long, agile, sinuous, six-legged thing, brown with patches of black, massive, like an immense furred lizard, low to the ground for its size, its belly almost in the leaves, a large broad, triangular head.
Smugglers of Gor     Book 32     Page 350





 


Snakes
To The Top


In the level of the emergents there live primarily birds, in particular parrots, long-billed fleers, and needle-tailed lits. Monkeys and tree urts, and snakes and insects, however, can also be found in this highest level. In the second level, that of the canopies, is found an incredible variety of birds, warblers, finches, mindars, the crested lit and the common lit, the fruit tindel, the yellow gim, tanagers, some varieties of parrot, and many more. Here, too, may be found snakes and monkeys, gliding urts, leaf urts, squirrels, climbing, long-tailed porcupines, lizards, sloths, and the usual varieties of insects, ants, centipedes, scorpions, beetles and flies, and so on.
. . .
Also in the ground zone are varieties of snake, such as the ost and hith, and numerous species of insects.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 311


"Do you know the delta of the Vosk?" he asked.

"I once traversed it," I said.

"Tell me about it," he said.
"It is treacherous, and trackless," I said. "It covers thousands of square pasangs. It is infested with insects, snakes and tharlarion.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Page 151


I shuddered. I was helpless at the bottom of the shaft. Were he to come upon me here how could I escape? Perhaps he would lower the rope and bucket for the others, and not me? Perhaps he would throw great stones down upon me? Perhaps he would lower poisonous insects or snakes into the pit? Perhaps he would leave me here to starve?
Dancer of Gor     Book 22     Page 379


At the edge of the camp, there was a motion in the grass, a subtle motion. We saw nothing. It was almost as though a snake, a large snake, might have moved there. A similar motion occurred a few yards to the left.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 656


Indeed, in moments, most of the beasts of the herd, in their doltish fashion, had returned to their pursuits, as though nothing had happened, scratching for grubs and worms, digging here and there to uncover edible roots. From the mouth of one dangled a small snake.
Kur of Gor     Book 28     Page 513





 


Snake - Barn
To The Top


"These oafs are unreliable and insufferable," said the voice.

"Thoughtless, perhaps," said Tajima.

"They are without honor," said the voice. "They are lazy, greedy beasts. One could line them up behind any banner at hand. They would eat by day and desert by night. They are as skittery as a jard and as sly as a barn snake. More allegiance would be proffered by a turtle."
Rebels of Gor     Book 33     Page 341





 


Snake - Hith
To The Top


One obvious danger lay in the road itself, and the fact that I had no light. After dark, various serpents seek out the road for its warmth, its stones retaining the sun's heat longer than the surrounding countryside. One such serpent was the huge, many-banded Gorean python, the hith.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 26


In another case, somnolent and swollen, I saw a rare golden hith, a Gorean python whose body, even when unfed, it would be difficult for a full-grown man to encircle with his arms.
Priest-Kings of Gor     Book 3     Page 191


In one cage, restlessly lifting its swaying head, there coiled a great, banded horned hith, Gor's most feared serpentine constrictor. It was native only to certain areas of the forests.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 210


We looked, too, at the sleen and the panthers, and the skins, and the great, captive hith.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 221


Also in the ground zone are varieties of snake, such as the ost and hith, and numerous species of insects.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 311


He leaped to his feet and embraced me, weeping, tears in his eyes. I struggled for breath, clutching the four poems. I speculated that this must be much like the grip of the dreaded, constricting hith.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Page 116


"Surely you are apprised of at least the first knowledge?" said Laura.

"But," said Ellen, "those are only in stories, they are mythological creatures, like the hith, the sleen."

"I have never seen a hith," said Laura, "but I have spoken to those who have. I have certainly seen sleen, and tarns. There are sleen in the house, in pens. They are useful in hunting slaves."
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 153


A praetor now approached the seventh challenger, and placed in his huge paws a gigantic ax, some ten feet in length, and double-bladed at each end, an ax which, in the grip of one such as he, one of such strength, might have decapitated a larl, and perhaps even, with three or four blows, Gor's mightiest constrictor, the giant hith.
Kur of Gor     Book 28     Page 248


In the tiny bit of light remaining she detected a large head, perhaps a yard across, wet, glistening from the water, on a long, thick neck, wet, glistening, the head some fifteen feet away, moving on the neck, weaving almost as might have the head of the giant hith, Gor's mightiest constrictor.
Kur of Gor     Book 28     Page 317


"An ost," said Lord Nishida, "is not well advised to pursue the great hith, against which its poison is useless."

This is not as surprising as it might seem, as the poison of the ost, as that of many poisonous snakes, is prey-selective, deadly against warm-blooded animals, such as tiny urts, its customary prey, or even larger animals, such as verr and tabuk, but harmless to other snakes, to certain forms of tharlarion, and such.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Page 94





 


Snake - Marsh Moccasin
To The Top


I felt something sinuous move against my neck. It was probably a marsh moccasin.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 163


We saw a narrow, dark shape, about five feet long, like a slowly undulating whip, glide past. A small triangular head was almost level with the water surface. I did not think there had been much danger, but there was some possibility that the movement of her legs in the water might have attracted its attention.

"That is a marsh moccasin," I said.

"Are they poisonous," she asked.

"Yes," I said.

"I never saw one before," she said.

"They are not common," I said, "even in the delta."

"Are they poisonous like the ost?" she asked.
. . .

"Like the ost?" she asked.

"What?" I asked.

"Are they poisonous, the marsh moccasins, like the ost?" she said.

"They are quite poisonous," I said, "but their venom, as I understand it, does not compare to that of the ost."

"Could I survive its bite?" she asked.

"Possibly," I said. "I do not know."

"I do not think I shall attempt to essay the experiment," she said.

"That is wise on your part," I said.

"Do men ever throw women to marsh moccasins; or osts?" she asked.

"Perhaps free women," I said, "as a form of execution."
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Pages 267 - 268


"It seems that slaves have various advantages over free women," she said.

"What did you have in mind?" I asked.

"Not being thrown to marsh moccasins, osts, and such."

"Presumably not," I said, "at least if they are pleasing."
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 271





 


Snake - Ost
To The Top


One obvious danger lay in the road itself, and the fact that I had no light. After dark, various serpents seek out the road for its warmth, its stones retaining the sun's heat longer than the surrounding countryside. One such serpent was the huge, many-banded Gorean python, the hith. One to be feared even more perhaps was the tiny ost, a venomous, brilliantly orange reptile little more than a foot in length, whose bite spelled an excruciating death within seconds.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 26


"Ost," read the guardsman. It was also the name of a species of tiny, brightly orange reptile, the most venomous on Gor.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Pages 80 - 81


Like most members of my Caste, more than the monstrous tarns, those carnivorous hawklike giants of Gor, I dreaded such creatures as the tiny ost, that diminutive, venomous reptile, orange, scarcely more than a few inches in length, that might lurk at one's very sandal and then, without provocation or warning, strike, its tiny fangs the prelude to excruciating torment, concluding only with sure death. Among warriors, the bite of an ost is thought to be one of the most cruel of all gates to the Cities of Dust; far preferable to them are the rending beak, the terrible talons of a tarn.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 118


I guessed unhappily that she might have had Lara hurled into a pit of osts or watched her boil alive in the foul oil of tharlarions.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Pages 177 - 178


"It is possible," granted Harold. "Is he the smallish fellow, rather fat, with two yellow teeth?"

"Yes," I said.

"They are poison teeth," remarked Harold, "a Turian affectation but quite deadly, being filled with the venom of the Ost."

"Then I shall attempt not to be bitten." I said.

"I think that is a good idea," granted Harold.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 187


The Paravaci was much stronger than the fat, tiny merchant and he soon had his hands well on the sphere and was tearing it out of the smaller man's clutching hands. Saphrar was screaming insanely and then, to my astonishment, he bit the Paravaci's forearm, sinking the two golden upper canine teeth into the hooded man's flesh. The Paravaci suddenly cried out in uncanny fear and shuddered . . .
. . .

I was scarcely aware of the brief whimpering of the Paravaci as, twisting and turning on the rug, biting at it, holding his arm, his flesh turning orange from ost venom, he writhed and died.
Kamchak walked to him and tore away the mask. I saw the contorted, now-orange, twisted, agonized face. Already it was like colored paper and peeling, as though lit and burned from the inside. There were drops of blood and sweat on it.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 318


Another form of lock difficult to guard against is the pit lock, because of the natural crevices in Gorean tiling commonly found in corridors of cylinders; when tampered with a trap falls away beneath the individual, dropping him to a pit below, usually containing knives fixed in stone, but upon occasion osts, or half-starved sleen or water tharlarion; sometimes, however, the pit may be simply a smooth-sided capture pit, so that the individual may later be interrogated and tortured at length.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 52


The small man held up a tiny packet. "This," he said, "is the poison, a powder prepared from the venom of the Ost."

I shuddered. Death by ost venom is among the most hideous of deaths.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 357


"That is a marsh moccasin," I said.

"Are they poisonous," she asked.

"Yes," I said.

"I never saw one before," she said.

"They are not common," I said, "even in the delta."

"Are they poisonous like the ost?" she asked.
. . .

"Like the ost?" she asked.

"What?" I asked.

"Are they poisonous, the marsh moccasins, like the ost?" she said.

"They are quite poisonous," I said, "but their venom, as I understand it, does not compare to that of the ost."

"Could I survive its bite?" she asked.

"Possibly," I said. "I do not know."

"I do not think I shall attempt to essay the experiment," she said.

"That is wise on your part," I said.

"Do men ever throw women to marsh moccasins; or osts?" she asked.

"Perhaps free women," I said, "as a form of execution."
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Pages 267 - 268


"It seems that slaves have various advantages over free women," she said.

"What did you have in mind?" I asked.

"Not being thrown to marsh moccasins, osts, and such."

"Presumably not," I said, "at least if they are pleasing."
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 271


Three more, since that time, as was determined from reports arriving at the quarters of the pit master, now the headquarters of the strangers, had perished. One had been pierced by a concealed spear, spring-released from the side of a corridor, another in crossing one of the narrow bridges over a crevice, it buckling as weight was placed at its center, another when an apparently solid portion of the corridor had fallen away beneath him, plunging him screaming, we heard the screams even where we were, into a nest of tiny, active serpents below, serpents called osts. They are, it seems, highly poisonous. The effects of the poison, too, I am told, are not pretty to watch.
Witness of Gor     Book 26     Page 577


"Take me with you!" she said.

"Better to put an ost in your pouch," said Cabot.

The ost, according to the resources, is a tiny, highly venomous snake. It is indigenous to certain locales on Gor.
Kur of Gor     Book 28     Page 425


"An ost," said Lord Nishida, "is not well advised to pursue the great hith, against which its poison is useless."

This is not as surprising as it might seem, as the poison of the ost, as that of many poisonous snakes, is prey-selective, deadly against warm-blooded animals, such as tiny urts, its customary prey, or even larger animals, such as verr and tabuk, but harmless to other snakes, to certain forms of tharlarion, and such.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Page 94


I awakened suddenly, screaming, unable to separate my ankles, which seemed fastened together by some thick, living, coiling, fibrous material. And I felt it moving more about my legs. Then I shrieked with pain. "Ost!" I thought. But there were no osts here, surely, not here. The ost did not range this far north. If there were osts here they would be caged pets, or assassination devices.
Smugglers of Gor     Book 32     Page 247


"Do you know what an ost is?" he asked.

"It is a tiny, brightly colored serpent commonly orange," I said, "which is venomous."

"It is the smallest, and deadliest, snake on Gor," he said. "It moves quickly, and can hide almost anywhere. Its bite is lethal, unless the limb can be cut off within a few Ihn. It is an unpleasant death. It ensues within a few Ehn. The victim commonly cries out with joy, to die, rejoicing that the pain will end."
Smugglers of Gor     Book 32     Page 544


Where there is one ost there will be others. What nest contains but one?"
Rebels of Gor     Book 33     Page 216


There are, of course, a variety of ways in which a toxin may be administered, for example, by means of a fang tooth, a poison ring, and so on. A simple method is to introduce an ost into the intended victim's sleeping furs.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Pages 531 - 532





 


Snake - Ost, Banded
To The Top


"You have great respect for him," I said.

Vancius laughed. "As I have great respect for the banded ost," said he.

I smiled. The banded ost is a variety of ost, a small, customarily brilliantly orange Gorean reptile. It is exceedingly poisonous. The banded ost is yellowish orange and is marked with black rings.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 335





 


Snake - Ost, Ushindi
To The Top


I looked to the round, shallow, circular pit in the center of the room. It was about a foot deep. The poles supporting the sleeping platform were set within it. In the pit, his hands still clutching, fingernails bloody, at one of the round poles supporting the platform, lay an askari. His body was twisted horribly, and contorted. The flesh had turned a blackish orange and, in places, had broken open, the skin peeling back like burned paper. A knife, fallen, lay near him in the pit. About his body, small, nervous, sinuous, crawled tiny snakes, osts. Each of these, startlingly, had tied to it a thin string. There were eight such diminutive reptiles. The strings, fastened behind their heads, led up to a pole at the head of the sleeping platform, where they were tied. A woven basket hung, too, near the foot of the sleeping platform. The ost is usually an orange snake, but these were Ushindi osts, which are red with black stripes. Anatomically, and with respect to toxin, I am told they are almost identical to the common ost.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 239


One by one, slowly, almost tenderly, on their strings, Bila Huruma lifted the tiny osts from the floor of the pit and placed them, one by one, in the basket near the foot of the sleeping platform.

"Are you of that caste called assassins?" he asked.

"No," I said.

He held the last of the osts on its string, suspended, about five feet from the floor of the pit.

"Bring him near," he said.

I was dragged to the edge of the pit. Bila Huruma extended his arm. I saw the small ost, red with its black stripes, on its string, near my face. Its tiny forked tongue slipped rapidly back and forth between the tiny jaws.

"Do you like my pet?" he asked.

"No," I said. "I do not."

The snake twisted on the string.

"Who hired you?" he asked.

"No one hired me," I said. "I did not know this was your chamber."

"You do not know, probably, who it was who truly hired you," he said. "Doubtless they would not do so, openly."

"He is white," said a man nearby. "Only those in Schendi might hire such a killer. They are familiar with the sleen of the north."

"Perhaps," said Bila Huruma.

I now saw the snake lifted until it was level with my eyes.

"Is Jambia, who was my guard, known to you?" asked Bila Huruma.

"No," I said.

"Why did you wish to kill me?" asked Bila Huruma.

"I had no wish to kill you," I said.

"Why were you here?" he asked.

"I came to find something of value," I said.

"Ah," said Bila Huruma. Then he spoke rapidly to an askari. I could not follow what he said then.

Bila Huruma took the tiny snake and then, carefully, placed it in the hanging basket. He then placed the lid on the basket. I breathed more easily.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Pages 241 - 242


Also in the ground zone are varieties of snake, such as the ost and hith, and numerous species of insects.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 311


"Bila Huruma, my patron and protector," said Shaba, "stood between Msaliti and myself. Msaliti had already attempted one attack on his life, that in which Jambia, the assassin, died by the osts, that same attack in which he sought to implicate you."
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 435





 


Snake - Water
To The Top


At last, the cage was drawn upward to the point where it had emerged some four or five inches from the water. It was then, apparently, tied in place. If I turned my head to the side, and knelt in the cage, I could, between the laps of the water against the pilings, snatch a breath. But it was painful to kneel so, my head turned as it was, the right side of my head, and then the left side of my head, held closely against the steel ceiling of the cage. "Forgive me, forgive me, Master!" I cried, as I could, my mouth half full of water. I was conscious of men and women moving over the wharf, as before, above me. I trusted the rope would hold. If it did not, I would surely drown. I was helpless, confined in the tiny cage. "Masters!" I cried. "Be silent," said a voice from above me. I think it was that of one of the assistants to the dealer. My ill-fated interview with the portly fellow in white and yellow, or gold, had taken place rather early, in the morning, not long after the tarpaulins had been removed from our cages, and our simple needs had been attended to. Toward noon, my misery was intense. I was cold from the river, and in pain, given how I must hold my body to access the narrow plate of air between the water and the ceiling of the cage. Often I had to spit out water. Then, a bit after noon, I shrieked with horror, for something, long, and snakelike, had slid between the bars and brushed across my body. "Help! Help!" I cried. Then the thing, with a snap of its long, smooth body, had darted away. "Help!" I screamed. "What is wrong?" asked a voice from above. I knew not who it was. "A snake," I cried, "a water snake!" "There are no water snakes here," called the voice. "The current discourages them. It is most likely an eel, a Vosk eel."
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 122



I had also had it confirmed that the snakelike visitants that had so frightened and discomfited me in my tenure in the mostly submerged cage were not water snakes, which tend to favor still water, but eels, in all probability Vosk eels, a form of river eel.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 139





 


Tharlarion
To The Top


Many are the objects for sale at the fair. I passed among wines and textiles and raw wool, silks, and brocades, copperware and glazed pottery, carpets and tapestries, lumber, furs, hides, salt, arms and arrows, saddles and harness, rings and bracelets and necklaces, belts and sandals, lamps and oils, medicines and meats and grains, animals such as the fierce tarns, Gor's winged mounts, and tharlarions, her domesticated lizards, and long chains of miserable slaves, both male and female.
Priest-Kings of Gor     Book 3     Page 12


From these raids the Wagon Peoples obtain a miscellany of goods which they are willing to barter to the Turians, jewels, precious metals, spices, colored table salts, harnesses and saddles for the ponderous tharlarion,
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 57


There was nothing living on Gor I knew that could take the impact of a tharlarion charge.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 114


I was not particularly surprised at finding a bit of rep-cloth tied on the rence plant, for the delta is inhabited. Man has not surrendered it entirely to the tharlarion, the Ul and the salt leach.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 6


Builders to observe the field of the stakes.

The warriors of Turia extended their formation about two hundred yards from the stakes until in ranks of four or five deep they were strung out in a line as long as the line of stakes itself. Then they halted. As soon as the hundreds of ponderous tharlarion had been marshaled into an order, a lance, carrying a fluttering pennon, dipped and there was a sudden signal on the tharlarion drums. Immediately the lances of the lines lowered and the hundreds of tharlarion, hissing and grunting, their riders shouting, the drums beating, began to bound rapidly towards us.

"Treachery!" I cried.

There was nothing living on Gor I knew that could take the impact of a tharlarion charge.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Pages 113 - 114


thralls should no longer be sacrificed; this was not defended, however, on grounds of the advance of civilization, or such, but rather on the grounds that thralls, like urts and tiny six-toed tharlarion, were not objects worthy of sacrifice;
. . .
he was now regarded as much in the same category with the urts that one clubs in the Sa-Tarna sheds, or are pursued by small pet sleen, kept there for that purpose, or with the tiny, six-toed rock tharlarion of southern Torvaldsland, favored for their legs and tails, which are speared by children.
Marauders of Gor     Book 9     Page 152


"It is unfortunate," said Borchoff, "that you fell living into our hands. The tharlarion pens of Turia require slaves for their cleaning."
Slave Girl of Gor     Book 11     Page 269


"He intends to join Lakes Ushindi and Ngao, I have heard," I said.

"It is a mad project," said Uchafu, "but what can one expect of the barbarians of the interior?"

"It would open the Ua river to the sea," I said.

"If it were successful," said Uchafu. "But it will never be accomplished. Thousands of men have already died. They perish in the heat, they die in the sun, they are killed by hostile tribes, they are destroyed by insects, they are eaten by tharlarion. It is a mad and hopeless venture, costly in money and wasteful in human life."
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Pages 125 - 126


On ridgework near the water turtles and tharlarion sunned themselves.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 417


I looked at the tharlarion.

It stood there, placidly. It slid a transparent membrane upward, covering its eye, as a broad-winged insect crawled on its lid. The insect fluttered away. The Lady Florence owned many tharlarion. Her stables were among the most extensive and finest of any owned by a citizen of Vonda.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 176


Early in the morning we had been in the southeast meadow, Barus, and I, and others in a work crew of male slaves. Taphris, too, had been with us, ostensibly to carry water. We had been placing sharpened posts, leaning inward, braced with abutments, at the edge of the meadow. These serve to keep the ponderous tharlarion which graze in the meadow confined.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 263


"Away!" cried Barus, waving his cloak at a tharlarion, browsing near the posts. It blinked, and turned away, its huge tail twitching.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 264


"Shhh," Barus, who was stripped to the waist, cautioned me. "Listen." He put his ear down to the warm sand.

I joined him, listening. Beneath the warm sand, say a foot below the surface, we heard a tiny noise, a scratching.

"It will be coming out soon," said Barus, grinning, straightening up.

"Yes, Master," I said.

"Taphris," said Barus, "put more sticks in the flame ditch." She looked at us. She was naked. Barus had made her remove her clothes in the incubation shed. She was covered with sweat. Her flesh, in the light from the flame ditch, it almost encircling the buried clutch before us, glowed reddishly. Girths cloths lay at hand. These, sewn from feed sacks, are used to dry and wrap the hatchlings. Snout straps, too, coiled, used to secure their jaws, also lay nearby.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 259


I went to where he now knelt in the sand. The sand there began to sink down slightly. I saw it stir. Then, suddenly, the horny snout of a tharlarion thrust up from the hot sand. Its eyes blinked. Its tongue darted in and out of its mouth, licking sand from about its jaws. Its head was some eight inches in width.

"Snout strap," said Barns.

I picked up one of the long, leather, coiled snout straps lying at hand.

The head of the tiny hatchling, some eight inches wide, some foot or so in length, was now fully emerged from the sand. I saw one clublike foot, clawed, strike up out of the sand. It hissed.

I looped the snout strap about its jaws and tied them shut. It squirmed and half pulled itself from the leathery casing which had contained it, drawing it up, half out of the sand.

"Girth cloth, Taphris!" called Barns.

Together Barns and I drew the hatchling out of the sand. With my foot I thrust back the clinging shell.

"Watch out for the tail!" said Barus to Taphris.

She stepped back.

Barns and I threw the hatchling on its back and, rolling it, then, wrapped its torso in the folds of the girth cloth. This tends to protect it against the tunnel air when it is carried to the nursery. I bent down and, with the help of Barus, got the hatchling to my shoulders. The head, with its strapped-shut jaws, rotated on the neck, some two feet in length. It struck against my thigh. The young beast weighed, I conjecture, some one hundred and forty to one hundred and fifty pounds.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Pages 271 - 272


The common Gorean defense against tharlarion attack, if it must be met on open ground, is the stationary, defensive square, defended by braced spears.
. . .
Then again the ponderous, earthshaking, bellowing, grunting, trampling tharlarion ground cavalry charged, this time breaking through the walls like dried straw, followed by waves of screaming, heavily armed spearmen.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Page 33


The tharlarion, incidentally, at least compared to mammals, seems to have a very sluggish nervous system. It seems almost impervious to pain. Most of the larger varieties have two brains, or, perhaps better, a brain and a smaller brainlike organ. The brain, or one brain, is located in the head, and the other brain, or the brainlike organ, is located near the base of the spine.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Pages 33 - 34


The chair, I noted, was not borne by male draft slaves, but was supported by tharlarion. There might be various reasons for this. One might be ostentation, a simple display of wealth, for good tharlarion are generally more expensive than male slaves, particularly draft slaves.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Page 270


The three moons were full. It was late. We were now in the woods. The slave wagon was not far away. The tharlarion, unhitched, but tethered, browsed among the trees, pulling at herbs in the grass, lifting its neck to nibble at wide leaves.
Dancer of Gor     Book 22     Pages 427 - 428


To my right, in the line of traffic moving south, I suddenly heard cursing and the startled, protesting bellowing of a tharlarion. There were shouts. There was a creaking of wood, and the slick squeak of an engaged, leather-lined brake shoe pressing against the iron rim of a wheel. "Jump!" cried someone. There was then a sound of sliding, and then, after a moment, that of a wagon tipping heavily into mud. The tharlarion, probably thrown from its feet, was squealing in its harness.

I pulled my pack from the wagon I was trekking beside and, feeling about, locating the side of the next wagon moving south, felt around it, and went to the side of the road. Another tharlarion moved past me. I reached out and felt its wet scales.
Renegades of Gor     Book 23     Pages 8 - 9


The first tharlarion now had its heavy, clawed feet on the stones of the road. I heard its claws on the stone. Some other men, too, came to the second tharlarion, hauling on its harness, and others, too, seized the wagon sides and the forward wheels, lending their efforts to getting the wagon on the road.
Renegades of Gor     Book 23     Page 13


The dust rose like clouds, stirred by the heavy, clawed paws of the tharlarion.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 84


The inertia of a tharlarion is formidable. It cannot be turned and halted with the same ease as might, say, a kaiila, or horse, which may be instantly turned or halted, pulled up short, and so on. When the tharlarion has its own head it is difficult to control. Consider the difficulties of trying to communicate with, or control, a boulder tumbling down a mountainside.
Swordsmen of Gor     Book 29     Page 352


I now went to it, and, for the first time, regarded it with care. Amongst the animals portrayed on the poster, snow larls, large striped urts, snarling sleen, performing tharlarion, prancing kaiila, there was another, where the poster was half torn. It was a beast, much like Master Grendel. It was clearly Kur.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 248


Some tharlarion, usually found in rivers, or along shores, are squat, heavy, sinuous, patient and capable under certain conditions, of brief bursts of speed.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 254


"Many arrangements were made in Brundisium, for my return," he said. "We shall bring kaiila and bosk, back to the islands, and the eggs of large tharlarion."
Rebels of Gor     Book 33     Page 595


A whip is used with bosk or kaiila, but it serves little purpose with tharlarion, given the thickness of their hide, and their comparative lack of responsiveness. In their case a long, supple drive wand, or baton, is normally used, which device may be used either to strike or prod the beast.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 172


The delta is rich in fish and birds. Also, as would be expected, given the abundance of game, it is home, as well, to various predators, in particular, the marsh shark and various forms of tharlarion, some, like the Ul, winged.
. . .

Rencers guide and maintain barges, poled, sailed, and drawn by large, swimming tharlarion, this linking, through the trackless marshes of the delta, the Vosk towns with Port Kar and the coast, and Port Kar and the coast with the Vosk towns. Trade has primarily to do with rence, but some attention is devoted elsewhere, for example, to salted fish, mostly parsit and grunt, to tharlarion oil and leather,
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 133


And races are popular, those of slaves, male and female, of the lofty kaiila, of tharlarion of various sorts, four-legged and two-legged, ponderous and fleet, and of the broad-winged, fierce, mighty tarns. Breeding lines are often kept in such matters. Breeding fees for champion animals can be exorbitant.
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 271


Tonight, I had sensed little of the presence of tharlarion about, of any sort. The difference, I suspect, was in our vessel, the rence craft as opposed to a canal boat. When we had availed ourselves of a canal boat, we were far more aware of tharlarion in the vicinity, turning in the water, emerging and submerging, sometimes circling the boat. Sometimes they brushed against, or prodded, the boat. One had risen up under the boat, tipping it. I was not sure what the difference was. I supposed it had to do with rence; rence would be familiar to them, a part of the marshes, here snagged, here floating, here loose, there massed, there tangled and rotting. I think they did not associate rence with the prospect of possible food. Whatever the explanation was, I was grateful.
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 289





 


Tharlarion - Alar
To The Top


Besides the ax, Alars are fond of the Alar sword, a long, heavy, double-edged weapon. Their shields tend to be oval, like those of Turians. Their most common mount is the medium-weight saddle tharlarion, a beast smaller and less powerful, but swifter and more agile, than the common high tharlarion. Their saddles, however, have stirrups, and thus make possible the use of the couched shock lance.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Page 45





 


Tharlarion - Black
To The Top


Pa-Kur himself rode a black tharlarion, one of the few I had seen. The beast was bejeweled and moved with a grave, regal stride.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 189





 


Tharlarion - Draft
To The Top


Behind them, stretching into the distance, came a long line of broad tharlarions, or the four-footed draft monsters of Gor. These beasts, yoked in braces, were drawing mighty wagons, filled with merchandise protected under the lashings of its red rain canvas.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 118


A bejeweled, curtained platform slung between the slow, swaying bodies of two of the broad tharlarions appeared. The beasts were halted by their strap-master, and after some seconds the curtains parted.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 119


The high tharlarions, unlike their draft brethren, the slow-moving, four-footed broad tharlarions, were carnivorous.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 125


At last I reached the section of the tharlarion corrals. I waited until one of the caravan guards passed. He didn't recognize me.

Glancing about to see that no one was watching, I lightly climbed the fence of woven branches and dropped down inside among a group of the broad tharlarions. I had carefully determined that the corral into which I dropped did not contain the saddle lizards, the high tharlarions, those ridden by Kazrak and his tharlarion lancers. Such lizards are extremely short-tempered, as well as carnivorous, and I had no intention of attracting attention to myself by beating my way through them with a spear butt.

Their more dormant relatives, the broad tharlarions, barely lifted their snouts from the feed troughs. Shielded by the placid, heavy bodies, some as large as a bus, I worked my way toward the interior side of the corral.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 166


For some reason neither the fearless hawklike tarns, nor the slow-witted tharlarions, the draft and riding lizards of Gor, would enter the mountains. The tharlarions become unmanageable and though the tarn will essay the flight the bird almost immediately becomes disoriented, uncoordinated, and drops screaming back to the plains below.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 48


I stood before the great gate of Tharna. The two giant beams that barred it were in place, beams that could only be moved by a team of broad tharlarions, draft lizards of Gor, or by a hundred slaves. The gates, bound with their bands of steel, studded with brass plates dull in the mist, the black wood looming over me in the dusk, were closed.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Pages 75 - 76


Through the trees I could see tent canvas, a tharlarion wagon, the strap-masters unharnessing a brace of low tharlarions, the huge, herbivorous draft lizards of Gor.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 185


I watched the merchant wagon, large and heavy, wide, with planked sides painted alternately white and gold, covered with a white and gold rain canvas. It was drawn not by the draft tharlarion like most merchant wagons but, like some, by four brown bosk.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Pages 240 - 241


Kuurus pointed to a fruit on a flat-topped wagon with wooden wheels, drawn by a small four-legged, horned tharlarion.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 7


most heavy hauling, of course, is done by tharlarion wagon;
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 95


The other bird was apparently only stunned, and it was being rolled to the edge of the net where it would be dropped into a large wheeled frame, drawn by two horned tharlarion,
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 139


Eight tarns were flying in this race, and, hooded, they were brought forth on low, sideless wheeled platforms, drawn by horned tharlarion.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 143


On the seat of the wagon, which was drawn by a horned tharlarion,
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 282


Then, on carts, drawn by small, horned tharlarion, there came cages, and poles of trophies.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 210


Her cart was now moving away, drawn by the small, horned tharlarion.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 216


The only craft commonly seen in Laura were light galleys, and the ubiquitous barges, towed by tharlarion treading along the shore.
Hunters of Gor     Book 8     Page 81


I feared the great tharlarion of the caravans. Often the animals wore belled harnesses.
Slave Girl of Gor     Book 11     Page 247


Even as I walked about the new platforms, wagons, drawn by draft tharlarion, waited to unload their lovely wares.
Beasts of Gor     Book 12     Page 56


The area between these walls, the marsh waters diverted on either side, was then to be drained and readied for the digging of the main channel. In this work draft tharlarion and great scoops, brought from the north, as well as gigantic work crews, would be used.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 220



"Yes, Mistress," I said. I proceeded down the street in the direction indicated, leading the tharlarion by its reins. Small saddle tharlarion are generally managed by snout reins. The huge war tharlarion are commonly guided by voice signals and the blows of spears on the face and neck. Draft tharlarion are harnessed, and can be managed either by men, or usually boys, who walk beside them, or by reins and whips, controlled by drivers, men mounted in drawn wagons.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 174


I looked at the tharlarion.

It stood there, placidly. It slid a transparent membrane upward, covering its eye, as a broad-winged insect crawled on its lid. The insect fluttered away. The Lady Florence owned many tharlarion. Her stables were among the most extensive and finest of any owned by a citizen of Vonda.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 176


"Bring the tharlarion, Jason," said the Lady Florence.

"Yes, Mistress," I said.

In a few moments I had freed and fetched the tharlarion.

I felt a chain leash snapped about my throat. The Lady Florence put it there. The other end was attached to her stirrup. "I am afraid this is necessary, Jason," she said.

"Yes, Mistress," I said.

"Help me into the saddle," she said. I lifted her sandaled foot upward, and she took her place in the leather seat at the side of the tharlarion's back. It has stirrups, into which I helped her place her feet, but it is not exactly a saddle as those of Earth would think of one, even of the sort usually designated as a sidesaddle. It is somewhat more in the nature of a stirruped seat. It is at the height of the beast's back, cushioned, held there by straps. She hooked herself into the seat, or, if one prefers, saddle. As I had lifted her into the seat I had seen her ankle. It was a good one, as I knew. I had never held her in my arms. When she used me, as she did frequently, I was chained on her couch.
. . .

The Lady Florence guided her tharlarion out into the street. I accompanied her, carrying the packages, chained by the neck to that stirrup in which was placed her left foot. Her body was turned somewhat in the saddle, so that she might the more easily guide the beast she rode.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 196


The homely smells of the stable yard and the barns, with their straw-filled stalls, are not really objectionable, when one grows used to them. The odors are distinctive but, when one grows accustomed to them, familiar and not really unpleasant. I rather liked the odors of the stables and barns, such complex mixed odors, ranging from straw, and hay and leather, to the organic wastes of our huge charges, some four species of draft tharlarion.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 233


I thrust my shoulder against the giant wooden wheel of the slave wagon.

I heard, ahead, the crying out of the driver, the snapping of his long whip over the backs of the two draft tharlarion harnessed to the wagon. "Pull, lazy beasts!" he cried.
Savages of Gor     Book 17     Page 79


It was drawn by a single tharlarion, a broad tharlarion, one of Gor's quadrupedal draft lizards.
Kajira of Gor     Book 19     Page 104


I had scrubbed down the tharlarion, cleaning and washing its scales and claws. I had then, under his supervision, cleaned out its stable and brought in fresh greens for it to feed upon.
Kajira of Gor     Book 19     Page 232


"I had thought rather," I said, "of perhaps joining the wagons for a time."

"They need drivers," said the fellow. "Can you handle tharlarion?"

"I can handle high tharlarion," I said. Long ago I had ridden guard in a caravan of Mintar, a merchant of Ar.

"I mean the draft fellows," said the driver.

"I suppose so," I said. It seemed likely to me that I could handle these more docile, sluggish beasts, if I had been able to handle their more agile brothers, the saddle tharlarion.

"They take a great deal of beating about the head and neck," he said.

I nodded. That was not so much different from the high tharlarion, either. They are usually controlled by voice commands and the blows of a spear. The tharlarion, incidentally, at least compared to mammals, seems to have a very sluggish nervous system. It seems almost impervious to pain. Most of the larger varieties have two brains, or, perhaps better, a brain and a smaller brainlike organ. The brain, or one brain, is located in the head, and the other brain, or the brainlike organ, is located near the base of the spine.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Pages 33 - 34


The cart was drawn by a bipedalian tharlarion, a slighter breed than, but related to, and swifter than, the common shock tharlarion used generally by the lancers of Gor     ean heavy cavalry.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Page 229


One could hear wagons passing, drawn by four-legged tharlarion, ponderous draft creatures of this world.
Witness of Gor     Book 26     Page 37


Tharlarion, Ellen had been told, were reptilian creatures, some of which were allegedly quite large, and domesticated. Supposedly different varieties were used for various purposes, such as war, haulage and racing. She was not sure, at that time, that such things existed, no more than larls, sleen, tarns, and such.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 154


She did know that a large variety of tharlarion, of bipedalian and quadrupedalian sorts, were bred for diverse purposes, war, transport, reconnaissance, hunting, haulage, racing, and such. The tharlarion she saw was much as she supposed the racing tharlarion might be, though perhaps heavier limbed and sturdier.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 284


Shortly thereafter, with a creak of wheels, the wagon moved, being drawn, judging from the sounds, by a small, draft tharlarion.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 368


The tharlarion swung its head about, bellowing. Its heavy tail lashed, pounding the earth. It twisted in the traces. The wagon rocked, half off the ground, tipped, and then righted itself. Ellen heard an arrow strike into the wagon bed above her. An angry metal point seemed suddenly to have grown from the splintered wood above her.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 582


The camp seemed to be, more than anything, a lumber camp, for logging was in process in the vicinity, and one, not unoften, heard the striking of axes, the crash of falling trees. These logs were trimmed, sawn, harnessed, and dragged by grunting, hissing draft tharlarion to staging areas where, skinned of bark, and piled, they awaited hoisting by weights and pulleys onto wagons, which were then drawn by tharlarion down a narrow, muddy road, soon disappearing amongst the trees.
Swordsmen of Gor     Book 29     Pages 179 - 180


A few days after her interview with Lord Nishida in his pavilion, curious, I decided to look in on the former Miss Wentworth, and so, after an inquiry or two, I made my way, heeled by Cecily, to one of the large stables in which draft tharlarion were housed, those which aided in the logging, and drew the wagons down the narrow path between the trees, to some destination, to the southeast. The stable was a long, large building, with a towering roof, to contain the longer-necked tharlarion. It would house several beasts, but I supposed, at this time of day, most, if not all, of the tharlarion would be about the camp, or active on the road to the southeast, hauling logs, or returning. By nightfall, as these things go, before the beasts returned, the stable should be cleaned, fresh straw strewn about, deeply, and the feed and water troughs filled.
Swordsmen of Gor     Book 29     Page 228


The inertia of a tharlarion is formidable. It cannot be turned and halted with the same ease as might, say, a kaiila, or horse, which may be instantly turned or halted, pulled up short, and so on. When the tharlarion has its own head it is difficult to control. Consider the difficulties of trying to communicate with, or control, a boulder tumbling down a mountainside. Draft tharlarion, of which variety these were, are normally driven slowly, and with care.
Swordsmen of Gor     Book 29     Page 352


The last race, just witnessed, was one of quadrupedalian tharlarion. These are bred for endurance and speed, but, even so, they are ponderous beasts, and no match for the more typical racing tharlarion, which is lighter and bipedalian. It is also carnivorous and more aggressive. In the race they commonly have their jaws bound shut. There have been several cases in which such beasts, before a race, or in the stable or exercise yards, have attacked their competitors, even their handlers. They are occasionally used for scouting or communication. Some hunt wild tarsk with lances from their saddles.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Pages 310 - 311


The next races were with bipedalian tharlarion. Such races, given the beasts, are faster, rougher, and more dangerous. Such races are apparently difficult to anticipate and analyze, presumably from the unpredictability of the beasts, which are sometimes refractory, and sometimes wayward and aggressive. Sometimes a favorite will balk, and an unknown bound to victory. Some people will not bet on such races.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 318


I did not understand that, as it seemed one driver for a wagon, particularly as the wagons were small, would be sufficient. There were, as of now three wagons. Astrinax drove one, Lykos the last, and Desmond mine, the second wagon. Indeed, the tharlarion of the second wagon, my wagon, was attached, by its nose ring, to the back of the first wagon, and the tharlarion of the third wagon was attached, by its nose ring, to the back of my wagon. Accordingly, it seemed three Drovers, or teamsters, would be enough. To be sure, I knew little about such matters, and, possibly, Astrinax might be returning to Ar, rather than accompanying us into the Voltai.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 326


A whip is used with bosk or kaiila, but it serves little purpose with tharlarion, given the thickness of their hide, and their comparative lack of responsiveness. In their case a long, supple drive wand, or baton, is normally used, which device may be used either to strike or prod the beast.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 172


Our wagon went faster and faster. The domestic tharlarion, both quadrupedalian and bipedalian, differ considerably from most wild tharlarion, most commonly in tractability stamina, and speed. They are bred, over generations, for such attributes. Even so, the ancient brain lurks within those broad skulls, and ancient instincts, bred for the rivers, swamps, and food plains, sometimes reassert themselves, and the beasts, as though then strangers to harnesses, reins, and drive wands, become uncontrollable, and, in some cases, dangerous, Most domestic tharlarion are draft beasts, but they also have their applications in sport and war. There are, for example, racing and hunting tharlarion, and tharlarion bred for battle, some of which, ponderous, and armored, can shatter lines and topple siege towers.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 172


Instantly Tullius Quintus released the brake and struck the beasts forward, and the wagon, tipping downward, rattled down a slope and struck into the water. The draft tharlarion are quadrupedalian and, as all such animals, willing or not, borne up by their configuration, have no difficulty in negotiating a liquid terrain. As they would walk on land, so they swim in water.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 173


After some four or five minutes I heard the bluntly clawed feet of the tharlarion scrambling on a bank, tumbling pebbles about, and the wagon, tilted upward, sharply, was dragged from the water. I slid to the back of the wagon bed.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 174


The wagon was being drawn by a draft tharlarion, I could tell this from the sound of claws on the stones. I supposed it to be a small one, as such is the case with most fee wagons within the city.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 386


It was drawn, too, by a single, plodding draft tharlarion. What pursuit could it possibly elude?
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 603





 


Tharlarion - Gigantic
To The Top


"Tharlarion," I said. We had seen such things before. But they were unusual tharlarion, unlike those with which I had hitherto been familiar, prior to the last few weeks.

"They approach," said Cabot.

I had never seen them come this close. I think they followed the ship for garbage, usually a half pasang behind, in the great ship's wake.

They had learned no fear of us.

And we, as it happened, had learned no fear of them.

Never had they been this close.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Page 185


I had never seen tharlarion of this sort before the voyage, and never until now had I seen one this close. It was the size of a small galley. For all its bulk it, buoyed by the water, had moved with grace. It had come for the Parsit, whose school had been disrupted by the passage of the great ship.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Page 188


The mystery of the parsit was solved, of course, as this wilderness of efflorescent plant life in the sea, floating like a vast park of life, drew myriads of small creatures, and these would draw the parsit, and the parsit would draw the shark, the grunt, and the unusual tharlarion.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Pages 219 - 220


Suddenly, ahead, some twenty yards, between the galleys and the numbers of ship's boats, the gigantic body of the wounded tharlarion emerged, its vast body, neck, head, and wide paddlelike appendages running with water, bright in the sunlight. It bellowed with pain, and dived again.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Page 227


The blade of Pertinax was but half drawn when both galleys burst apart, leaping from one another, the gigantic body of the tharlarion rising between them, springing forty feet or more from the water, expelling a snorting burst of air, several of the eel-like sharks fastened in its flanks; it seemed oddly still for a moment, upright, at the height of its leap, and then fell back in the water, drenching us, half filling the galleys with water; I
pulled rent vines from about me; blossoms were at my knees in the water. I felt a descent as of heated fog, and realized it was the air the creature had expelled, settling cloudlike about us. The thing had returned. How could that be? Surely it was a coincidence, that the great beast, lacerated, in its agony, running blood, had come back to this place. The long neck, yards in length, snakelike, lifted, and the small head swayed about, as though searching, with the single eye left. It had returned to the place where it had been first hurt. I could see the tails of sharks whipping against the water, trying to drive their jaws deeper into the beast's flesh. Other fins were approaching, knifing through the blossoms. I heard a man scream on the galley of Seremides, and he poked upward with his spear. The small head on the great body, with its triangular jaws, with its rows of tiny, fine teeth, reached down, almost gracefully, and lifted the screaming fellow yards into the air. It then threw its gigantic, massive, glistening body, sharks clinging to it, over the gunwales of the galley of Seremides, pressing it under the waves, men leaping into the sea on either side. It then, dragging its burden of sharks, its victim still struggling in its jaws, dove, and the snap of that great tail, striking upward, tipped us, and then, striking downward, propelling that enormous bulk, clove our galley, and we were plunged into the water. The sea about us was red, and I spit out water. Within it was the taste of blood. I saw a fellow two yards away drawn beneath the water.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Pages 229 - 230





 


Tharlarion - High
To The Top


The tarn is one of the two most common mounts of a Gorean warrior; the other is the high tharlarion, a species of saddle-lizard, used mostly by clans who have never mastered tarns. No one in the City of Cylinders, as far as I knew, maintained tharlarions, though they were supposedly quite common on Gor, particularly in the lower areas in swampland and on the deserts.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 52


The ringing of the tharlarions shod claws on the road grew louder.

In a minute the rider appeared in view - a fine, bearded warrior with a golden helmet and a tharlarion lance. He drew the riding lizard to a halt a few paces from me. He rode the species of tharlarion called the high tharlarion, which ran on its two back feet in great bounding strides. Its cavernous mouth was fined with long, gleaming teeth. Its two small, ridiculously disproportionate forelegs dangled absurdly in front of its body.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 115


In those days I learned to master the high tharlarion, one of which had been assigned to me by the caravan's tharlarion master. These gigantic lizards had been on Gor for a thousand generations before the first tarn was tamed, and were raised from the leathery shell to carry warriors. They responded to voice signals, conditioned into their tiny brains in the training years. Nonetheless, the butt of one's lance, striking about the eye or ear openings, for there are few other sensitive areas in their scaled hides, is occasionally necessary to impress your will on the monster.

The high tharlarions, unlike their draft brethren, the slow-moving, four-footed broad tharlarions, were carnivorous. However, their metabolism was slower than that of a tarn, whose mind never seemed far from food and, if it was available, could consume half its weight in a single day. Moreover, they needed far less water than tarns. To me, the most puzzling thing about the domesticated tharlarions, and the way in which they differed most obviously from wild tharlarions and the lizards of my native planet, was their stamina, their capacity for sustained movement. When the high tharlarion moves slowly, its stride is best described as a proud, stalking movement, each great clawed foot striking the earth with a measured rhythm. When urged to speed, however, the high tharlarion bounds, in great leaping movements that carry it twenty paces at a time.

The tharlarion saddle, unlike the tarn saddle, is constructed to absorb shock. Primarily, this is done by constructing the tree of the saddle in such a way that the leather seat is mounted on a hydraulic fitting which actually floats in a thick lubricant. Not only does this lubricant absorb much of the shock involved, but it tends, except under abnormal stress, to keep the seat of the saddle parallel to the ground. In spite of this invention, the mounted warriors always wear, as an essential portion of their equipment, a thick leather belt, tightly buckled about their abdomen. In addition, the mounted warriors wear a high, soft pair of boots called tharlarion boots. These protect their legs from the abrasive hides of their mounts. When a tharlarion runs, its hide could tear the unprotected flesh from a man's bones.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 124 - 125


At last I reached the section of the tharlarion corrals. I waited until one of the caravan guards passed. He didn't recognize me.

Glancing about to see that no one was watching, I lightly climbed the fence of woven branches and dropped down inside among a group of the broad tharlarions. I had carefully determined that the corral into which I dropped did not contain the saddle lizards, the high tharlarions, those ridden by Kazrak and his tharlarion lancers. Such lizards are extremely short-tempered, as well as carnivorous, and I had no intention of attracting attention to myself by beating my way through them with a spear butt.

Their more dormant relatives, the broad tharlarions, barely lifted their snouts from the feed troughs. Shielded by the placid, heavy bodies, some as large as a bus, I worked my way toward the interior side of the corral.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 166


For some reason neither the fearless hawklike tarns, nor the slow-witted tharlarions, the draft and riding lizards of Gor, would enter the mountains. The tharlarions become unmanageable and though the tarn will essay the flight the bird almost immediately becomes disoriented, uncoordinated, and drops screaming back to the plains below.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 48


The tarn had struck a field of some sort, which perhaps acted on the mechanism of his inner ear, resulting in the loss of balance and coordination. A similar device, I supposed, might prevent the entry of high tharlarions, the saddle lizards of Gor, into the mountains. In spite of myself I admired the Priest-Kings. I knew now that it was true, what I had been told, that those who entered the mountains would do so on foot.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 182


I had no tarn, one of Gor     's fierce saddlebirds; I had not even the monstrous high tharlarion, used as the mounts of shock cavalry by the warriors of some cities.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 9


The kaiila is extremely agile, and can easily outmaneuver the slower, more ponderous high tharlarion.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 13


When I had lifted her to her feet I noted, in the distance, a bit of dust moving from one of the gates of the city towards us, probably two or three warriors mounted on high tharlarion.
. . .

I laughed and wheeled the kaiila and raced from the place, leaving the riders of the ponderous tharlarion far behind.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Pages 108 - 109


On long lines of tharlarion I could see warriors of Turia approaching in procession the Plains of a Thousand Stakes. The morning sun flashed from their helmets, their long tharlarion lances, the metal embossments on their oval shields, unlike the rounded shields of most Gorean cities. I could hear, like the throbbing of a heart, the beating of the two tharlarion drums that set the cadence of the march. Beside the tharlarion walked other men-at-arms, and even citizens of Turia, and more vendors and musicians, come to see the games.

Oh the heights of distant Turia itself I could see the flutter of flags and pennons. The walls were crowded, and I supposed many upon them used the long glasses of the Caste of Builders to observe the field of the stakes.

The warriors of Turia extended their formation about two hundred yards from the stakes until in ranks of four or five deep they were strung out in a line as long as the line of stakes itself. Then they halted. As soon as the hundreds of ponderous tharlarion had been marshaled into an order, a lance, carrying a fluttering pennon, dipped and there was a sudden signal on the tharlarion drums. Immediately the lances of the lines lowered and the hundreds of tharlarion, hissing and grunting, their riders shouting, the drums beating, began to bound rapidly towards us.

"Treachery!" I cried.

There was nothing living on Gor I knew that could take the impact of a tharlarion charge.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Pages 113 - 114


it might further be pointed out that a saber would barely reach to the saddle of the high tharlarion;
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Pages 123 - 124


The saber, incidentally, is not only unpopular among the Wagon Peoples but among the warriors of Gor generally; it is regarded as being too long and clumsy a weapon for the close, sharp combat so dear to the heart of the warrior of the cities; further it is not of much use from the saddle of a tarn or tharlarion.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 124


The archery of tarnsmen, of course, is most effective against massed infantry or clusters of the ponderous tharlarion.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 182


slavers can strike any city but they are particularly a scourge to those cities which have not trained the tarn, but depend on the ponderous tharlarion.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 51


Yet, in the day of the tharlarion and tarn, one still finds, among infantries, the Torian Square; the phalanx, though its impact could be exceeded only by the tharlarion wedge or line, is now unknown, except for a defensive relic known as the Wall, in which massed infantry remains stationary, heroically bracing itself when flight is impossible, for the devastating charge of tharlarion.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 344


A hunt master, astride a monstrous tharlarion, holding a wand, tufted with panther hair, preceded the retinue.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 209


And who would remember Talena, and her shame, after Marlenus, astride a mighty tharlarion, would have his triumph in the streets of Ar,
Hunters of Gor     Book 8     Page 176


Two tharlarion, ponderous and stately, made their way toward the keep. They were mounted by two warriors, with lances.
Slave Girl of Gor     Book 11     Page 266


When I heard the sound of the tharlarion, some four or five of them, I rose to my feet.

"Have you see aught of a sport slave?" she asked.

"No," I said.

She was very lovely and attractive in her hunting costume, brief tunic and long hose, brown, a scarlet cape and cap, the cap with a feather. She carried a short, yellow bow, of Ka-la-ha wood, which could clear the saddle of the tharlarion, its missile being easily released to either side. Her black boots, slick and shining, were spurred. A quiver of arrows, yellow, was at the left of her saddle.

"Thank you, Warrior," she said, and wheeled the light saddle tharlarion, its claws scattering pebbles by the side of the pond.

She was with four men, also on upright tharlarion. They followed her as she sped away.
Beasts of Gor     Book 12     Page 111


The tharlarion moved about, water at the stirrup, shifting, tossing its head about. Then its reins hung in the water. It was a small, hunting tharlarion, controlled by bit and bridle. The large upright tharlarion, or war tharlarion, are guided by voice commands and the blows of spears. The man put the knife in his teeth and, fiercely, smote the tharlarion. It grunted and, splashing, fled from the water, running in its birdlike gait across the fields.
Beasts of Gor     Book 12     Page 125


"It is kind of you not to be bitter," said the Lady Florence, acidly. I held the reins of her tharlarion. It was not large. Its stirrup was at my right shoulder.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 170


"Yes, Mistress," I said. I proceeded down the street in the direction indicated, leading the tharlarion by its reins. Small saddle tharlarion are generally managed by snout reins. The huge war tharlarion are commonly guided by voice signals and the blows of spears on the face and neck. Draft tharlarion are harnessed, and can be managed either by men, or usually boys, who walk beside them, or by reins and whips, controlled by drivers, men mounted in drawn wagons.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 174


"Yes, Mistress," I said.
"Help me into the saddle," she said. I lifted her sandaled foot upward, and she took her place in the leather seat at the side of the tharlarion's back. It has stirrups, into which I helped her place her feet, but it is not exactly a saddle as those of Earth would think of one, even of the sort usually designated as a sidesaddle. It is somewhat more in the nature of a stirruped seat. It is at the height of the beast's back, cushioned, held there by straps. She hooked herself into the seat, or, if one prefers, saddle.
. . .

The Lady Florence guided her tharlarion out into the street. I accompanied her, carrying the packages, chained by the neck to that stirrup in which was placed her left foot. Her body was turned somewhat in the saddle, so that she might the more easily guide the beast she rode.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 196


We did not, in the great stables, raise saddle tharlarion, though in the house stables, here in the Mistress' villa, some forty pasangs south and west of Vonda, there were several saddle tharlarion.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 233


Then, it seemed in a moment, while she cried out in misery, high tharlarion, some twenty of them, thundered suddenly about me, the earth shaking, dust rising in billows about me. I was encircled.
Players of Gor     Book 20     Page 258


The man indicated the kneeling Lady Telitsia with his head. She knelt in the dust, small among the great, clawed hind legs of the shifting tharlarion.
Players of Gor     Book 20     Page 262


"I note that you have not yet been permitted footwear," I said. Her feet, bare in the stirrups of the saddle, were dark with dirt, as were her lower legs, from her ride. Her legs did indeed look well, covered with dust though they might be, shapely against the leather of the saddle, and the thick, scaled hide of the tharlarion.
Players of Gor     Book 20     Page 286


"I had thought rather," I said, "of perhaps joining the wagons for a time."

"They need drivers," said the fellow. "Can you handle tharlarion?"

"I can handle high tharlarion," I said. Long ago I had ridden guard in a caravan of Mintar, a merchant of Ar.

"I mean the draft fellows," said the driver.

"I suppose so," I said. It seemed likely to me that I could handle these more docile, sluggish beasts, if I had been able to handle their more agile brothers, the saddle tharlarion.

"They take a great deal of beating about the head and neck," he said.

I nodded. That was not so much different from the high tharlarion, either. They are usually controlled by voice commands and the blows of a spear. The tharlarion, incidentally, at least compared to mammals, seems to have a very sluggish nervous system. It seems almost impervious to pain. Most of the larger varieties have two brains, or, perhaps better, a brain and a smaller brainlike organ. The brain, or one brain, is located in the head, and the other brain, or the brainlike organ, is located near the base of the spine.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Pages 33 - 34


In a moment a large bipedalian saddle tharlarion, in golden panoply, its nails polished, its scales brushed bright, wheeled to a halt before the standard bearers. Behind it came several other tharlarion, resplendent, too, but lesser in size and panoply, with riders. Myron, or he who was acting on his behalf, then, by means of a dismounting stirrup, not the foot stirrup, the rider's weight lowering it, descended to the ground.
Magicians of Gor     Book 25     Page 90


We were astride rented tharlarion, high tharlarion, bipedalian tharlarion. Although our mounts were such, they are not to be confused with the high tharlarion commonly used by Gorean shock cavalry, swift, enormous beasts the charge of which can be so devastating to unformed infantry. If one may use terminology reminiscent of the sea, these were medium-class tharlarion, comparatively light beasts, at least compared to their brethren of the contact cavalries, such cavalries being opposed to the sorts commonly employed in missions such as foraging, scouting, skirmishing and screening troop movements. Rather our mounts were typical of the breeds from which are extracted racing tharlarion, of the sort used, for example, in the Vennan races. To be sure, it is only select varieties of such breeds, such as the Venetzia, Torarii and Thalonian, which are commonly used for the racers. As one might suppose, the blood lines of the racers are carefully kept and registered, as are, incidentally, those of many other sorts of expensive bred animals, such as tarsks, sleen and verr. This remark also holds for certain varieties of expensive bred slaves, the prize crops of the slave farms. Venna, a wealthy town north of Ar, is known for its diversions, in particular, its tharlarion races. Many of Ar's more affluent citizens kept houses in Venna, at least prior to the Cosian war. To date, Venna, though improving her walls and girding herself for defense, had not been touched in the Cosian war. This is perhaps because it is not only the rich of Ar who kept properties within her walls, but those of many other cities, as well, perhaps even of Kasra and Tentium, in Tyros, and of Telnus, Selnar, Temos and Jad, in Cos. We were some pasangs outside Ar. We wore wind scarves. Dust rose up for feet about us. The season was dry. Where our beasts trod the prints of their feet and claws remained evident in the dust. In places the earth cracked under their step.
Magicians of Gor     Book 25     Page 290


A rider had reined in, turning, a light tharlarion, a delicate, quickly moving, bipedalian, reptilian mount. In the saddle he was some eight feet above the stones.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 284


Shortly thereafter she heard a springing, clattering, birdlike gait on the stones of the market, and a cry of "Make way, make way!" She turned about, and shuddered. A rider had reined in, turning, a light tharlarion, a delicate, quickly moving, bipedalian, reptilian mount. In the saddle he was some eight feet above the stones. He wore the common Y-visaged helmet, and carried a lance. A studded buckler, a small, round, spiked shield, was at the side of the saddle. This was the first tharlarion that she had seen, though she had heard of such beasts, and she gathered that such, this and others, were not common in the streets of cities. She did know that a large variety of tharlarion, of bipedalian and quadrupedalian sorts, were bred for diverse purposes, war, transport, reconnaissance, hunting, haulage, racing, and such. The tharlarion she saw was much as she supposed the racing tharlarion might be, though perhaps heavier limbed and sturdier.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Pages 283 - 284


Ellen, choking in the dust raised by the clawed feet of restless saddle tharlarion, stirring, grunting, snorting, coming and going, seemingly all about her, miserable in the heat, shutting her eyes against the dust and glare, the sun burning on her back, weeping, the tears mixing with the grit of dust, was forced to her knees, and then to all fours.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 348


There was a pounding of claws on the earth and a saddle tharlarion, with a hurried, leaping gait, hurtled by.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 349


Mirus urged his tharlarion, a swift, bipedalian tharlarion, forward.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 566


The last race, just witnessed, was one of quadrupedalian tharlarion. These are bred for endurance and speed, but, even so, they are ponderous beasts, and no match for the more typical racing tharlarion, which is lighter and bipedalian. It is also carnivorous and more aggressive. In the race they commonly have their jaws bound shut. There have been several cases in which such beasts, before a race, or in the stable or exercise yards, have attacked their competitors, even their handlers. They are occasionally used for scouting or communication. Some hunt wild tarsk with lances from their saddles.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Pages 310 - 311


One tarsk, snorting, spun about, head down, to face the riders. They were then about him, lances thrusting. I saw blood on the hump running in the dust with which the beast was covered, and the beast then, with an enraged squeal, charged the nearest hunter. The tharlarion, its jaws unbound, moved to the side, and bit at the tarsk as it lunged past. The rider lost his saddle, and plunged to the dirt. The tarsk spun about to charge, again, but the tharlarion, apparently trained, interposed its body between the tarsk and the rider, its head down, jaws gaping. The beast never reached either the tharlarion or the rider, for its body had been penetrated by three lances, which pinned it in place. The dismounted rider then hurried about the beast, and leapt on it from behind, seized its long hump mane, and plunged his dagger into its side. The lances, which are smoothly pointed, to allow for an easy retrieval, were removed from the animal. The dismounted rider then regained his saddle and he and the others, sped about the wagon, raising dust following the first rider, and the running tarsk. The struck beast rolled in the dirt, bleeding, blood coming in gouts from its mouth, as the heart might beat, reddening the tusks, and then, after a time, it lay still, beside the wagon.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Pages 404 - 405


Our wagon went faster and faster. The domestic tharlarion, both quadrupedalian and bipedalian, differ considerably from most wild tharlarion, most commonly in tractability stamina, and speed. They are bred, over generations, for such attributes. Even so, the ancient brain lurks within those broad skulls, and ancient instincts, bred for the rivers, swamps, and food plains, sometimes reassert themselves, and the beasts, as though then strangers to harnesses, reins, and drive wands, become uncontrollable, and, in some cases, dangerous, Most domestic tharlarion are draft beasts, but they also have their applications in sport and war. There are, for example, racing and hunting tharlarion, and tharlarion bred for battle, some of which, ponderous, and armored, can shatter lines and topple siege towers.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 172





 


Tharlarion - Hunting
To The Top


The tharlarion moved about, water at the stirrup, shifting, tossing its head about. Then its reins hung in the water. It was a small, hunting tharlarion, controlled by bit and bridle.
Beasts of Gor     Book 12     Page 125


"True," said Astrinax.

"Those are rugged, powerful animals," said Lykos.

"Hunting tharlarion," said Astrinax.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 375


"Bipedalian tharlarion, hunting tharlarion," said Lykos, "lancers."
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 425


I supposed it was no coincidence that the fellow who had collared us was one of the hunters of Kleomenes. From the wagons, days before, we knew the sort of men who might dare to mount and manage the bipedalian hunting tharlarion, the sort of men who, armed with a slender lance, would match themselves against Voltai tarsk.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 458


Our wagon went faster and faster. The domestic tharlarion, both quadrupedalian and bipedalian, differ considerably from most wild tharlarion, most commonly in tractability stamina, and speed. They are bred, over generations, for such attributes. Even so, the ancient brain lurks within those broad skulls, and ancient instincts, bred for the rivers, swamps, and food plains, sometimes reassert themselves, and the beasts, as though then strangers to harnesses, reins, and drive wands, become uncontrollable, and, in some cases, dangerous, Most domestic tharlarion are draft beasts, but they also have their applications in sport and war. There are, for example, racing and hunting tharlarion, and tharlarion bred for battle, some of which, ponderous, and armored, can shatter lines and topple siege towers.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 172





 


Tharlarion - Land
To The Top


There were other barges on the river, some moving across the river, others coming toward Laura, others departing. Those departing used only the current. Those approaching were drawn by land tharlarion, plodding on log roads along the edges of the river. The land tharlarion can swim barges across the river, but he is not as efficient as the vast river tharlarion. Both sides of the river are used to approach Laura, though the northern shore is favored. Unharnessed tharlarion, returning to Lydius at the mouth of the Laurius, generally follow the southern shore road, which is not as much used by towing tharlarion as the northern.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 81





 


Tharlarion - Long
To The Top


I recalled reports I had heard in the tavern of an alleged monster sighted some weeks ago in the delta, something similar, save for a greater size and a silverish color, to the leatherish, black, snakelike "long tharlarion," with which the delta teems. I supposed it was, if it was real, a variety of long tharlarion, perhaps a mutant or sport, or such.
. . .

One claimed to have seen canal urts swimming in the vicinity of some shadowy, muchly submerged visitant to the Canal of Veminiums, presumably a shark or long tharlarion.
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 195


One is in the most immediate danger from long tharlarion whose body shape distributes its weight in such a way that it has little to fear from quicksand.
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 307


Then I cried out again, certain that it was the snout of a long tharlarion, moving easily through the shallow water. But it could not be so, for such a beast seizes its prey, precipitously, and then drags it under water to drown it, after which it feasts.
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 308





 


Tharlarion - Long-Necked, Paddle-Finned
To The Top


We, the girl, the creature and I, were not alone on the bar. A long-necked, paddle-finned tharlarion was a few yards away, half up on the sand. More dangerous, at least immediately, were two short-legged, long-bodied tharlarion twisting about in the sand near the foot of the pole.

Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 180





The long-jawed creature turned toward the long-necked tharlarion and hissed menacingly. Slowly the long-necked tharlarion, pushing back with its paddlelike appendages, slipped back into the marsh. It turned and withdrew, half submerged.

Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 181






 


Tharlarion - Marsh
To The Top


"Of custom," said Ho-Hak, "we give those we capture who are of Port Kar a choice."

"What is the choice?" I asked.

"You will be thrown bound to marsh tharlarion, of course," said Ho-Hak.

I paled.

"The choice," said Ho-Hak, "is simple." He regarded me. "Either you will be thrown alive to the marsh tharlarion or, if you wish, we will kill you first."

I struggled wildly against the marsh vine, futilely. The rence growers, without emotion, watched me. I fought the vine for perhaps a full Ehn. Then I stopped. The vine was tight. I knew I had been perfectly secured. I was theirs. The girl beside me laughed, as did the man with the headband, and certain of the others.

"There is never any trace of the body," said Ho-Hak.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 22


We saw one rencer screaming in the water, caught in the jaws of a marsh tharlarion.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 54


I seized him and spun him about, breaking in his face with a blow. Spitting teeth, his face a mask of blood, he tried to draw his sword. I lifted him over my head and threw him screaming into the jaws of tharlarion churning the marsh at the edge of the island. They had feasted much that night, and would more.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 56


My leg slipped from the island into the water and suddenly a tiny tharlarion struck it, seizing his bit of flesh and backing, tail whipping, away. My leg was out of the water, but now the water seemed yellow with the flashing bodies of tiny tharlarion, and, beyond them, I heard the hoarse grunting of the great marsh tharlarion, some of which grow to be more than thirty feet in length, weighing more than half a hundred men. Beyond them would be the almost eel-like, long-bodied, nine-gilled Gorean marsh sharks.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 58


I heard a thrashing in the water on the other side of the barge, the hoarse grunting of a suddenly emerged marsh tharlarion.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 71


A huge tharlarion, seeing the image on the water, half rose from the marsh, jaws clashing, and then dropped back into the water. Two or three more tharlarion then churned there beneath her.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 92


The delta of the Vosk, for most practical purposes, a vast marsh, an area of thousands of square pasangs, where the Vosk washes down to the sea, is closed to shipping. It is trackless and treacherous, and the habitat of marsh tharlarion and the predatory Ul, a winged lizard with wing-spans of several feet.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 26


I nodded. The marsh tharlarion, and river tharlarion, of Gor are, I suspect, genetically different from the alligators, caymens and crocodiles of Earth. I suspect this to be the case because these Earth reptiles are so well adapted to their environments that they have changed very little in tens of millions of years. The marsh and river tharlarion, accordingly, if descended from such beasts, brought long ago to Gor on Voyages of Acquisition by Priest-Kings, would presumably resemble them more closely. On the other hand, of course, I may be mistaken in this matter. It remains my speculation, however, that the resemblance between these forms of beasts, which are considerable, particularly in bodily configuration and disposition, may be accounted for by convergent evolution; this process, alert to the exigencies of survival, has, I suspect, in the context of similar environments, similarly shaped these oviparous predators of two worlds.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 326


In climbing to the platform, and in traversing it, the guards with us, who had now remained outside, had, with the butts of their spears, prodded more than one sinuous tharlarion from the boards, the creature then plunging angrily, hissing, into the marsh.
Savages of Gor     Book 17     Page 14


"Do you know the delta of the Vosk?" he asked.

"I once traversed it," I said.

"Tell me about it," he said.
"It is treacherous, and trackless," I said. "It covers thousands of square pasangs. It is infested with insects, snakes and tharlarion.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Page 151


"Through the eye!" I screamed, struggling in the ropes, naked, they tight about my upper body, my hands crossed and bound behind me, fastened closely to my ankles, kneeling in the bow of the small craft, of bound rence. "Through the eye!"

Men screamed about me, and cried out with fear, rage. The fellow had been taken from the rence craft before me, the comparatively small, less than a foot in breadth at its thickest point, triangular-jawed head, on the long, muscular, sinuous neck, lifting suddenly, glistening, dripping water, from the marsh, turning sideways, and seizing the fellow, then lifting him a dozen feet, on that long neck, screaming, writhing into the air.

"Through the eyes!" I begged him.

"He cannot reach the eyes!" cried a man.

A fellow smote at the side of the creature with his paddle. It backed away, propelled by its heavy, diamondshape, paddlelike appendages, its tail snapping behind it, splashing water.

There was much screaming. Within a hundred yards there was a flotilla of small craft, rence craft, flatboats, barges, scows, fishing boats and rafts, perhaps four or five hundred men.

We heard the snapping of the backbone of the fellow in the air.

If he had been able to get his thumbs to the creature's eyes, he might have been able to utilize those avenues, to reach the brain. But he had been unable to do so.

"He is dead," said a man.

The body hung limp, save for tremors, contractions, the wild stare in the eyes.

"He is not dead!" cried another fellow.

"Kill him!" begged another.

"I cannot reach him!" cried a fellow with a sword, standing unsteadily, almost falling, in one of the light rence craft.

"No, he is dead," said another. The man was dead.

The creature then submerged, and turning, struck against one of the barges, lifting it up a yard, from the water, then was under it, the barge sliding off its back, half turned, and was moving away, under water, through the reeds.

A fellow cried out near me. The narrow snout of a fishlike tharlarion thrust up from the water, inches away. Another fellow pushed at it with his paddle. It disappeared under the bound rence.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Pages 85 - 86


A fellow cried out near me. The narrow snout of a fishlike tharlarion thrust up from the water, inches away. Another fellow pushed at it with his paddle. It disappeared under the bound rence.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 86


"It is gigantic!" cried the fellow near me. I heard a hideous hissing, a thrashing in the sand. Men parted between us and the creature. I struggled up a few inches, turning my head. Moving toward us, dripping, was a gigantic, short-legged, long-bodied tharlarion. Its tail snapped to one side, scattering sand.

"Fire!" I screamed. "Torches!"

The opening of its long, narrow jaws may have been as much as five foot Gorean.

"Torches!" cried the fellow with me.

"It wants the meat," I said. "Drive it away! That is why the turtle came to the bar. It was fleeing!"

The tharlarion looked about, its body lifted off the sand, its tail moving.

A fellow rushed toward it, thrusting a lit torch into the jaws. The beast hissed with fury, drawing back. Then another fellow threatened it with a torch, and then another. The beast lowered its body to the sand and then, pushing back in the sand, backed away.

"More fire!" cried a fellow.

Men rushed forward, with torches, and spears. Suddenly the beast slid back into the water, and, with a snap of its tail, turned and disappeared, beyond the ring of torchlight.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 101


To his right, a few feet away, not following him, there suddenly emerged a long-necked tharlarion from the marsh, half out of the water. To the man's left, not following him either, as far as I could tell, there suddenly emerged a short-legged, long-bodied tharlarion. We could see the irregular backs of other beasts here and there breaking the water.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Pages 143 - 144


Men were hurrying about with torches, with spears, striking at tharlarion. The shore seemed alive with them, and the marsh. I heard screams coming from all sides of the bar. Nearby several men were thrusting spears into the body of a huge tharlarion. Other fellows were thrusting torches down at others. More beasts clambered from the marsh, driven by those behind them. The bar seemed alive with men and tharlarion. A fellow might be attacking one beast with a torch while others crawled past him. The beasts swarmed on the bar. Few attacked men, except, here and there, to react, or snap at them. More injuries, I think, were suffered as the result of their thrashing about, the swift movements of those gigantic tails, the strokes of which could break legs, and hurl a fellow yards away, than from the laceration of numerous, white, curved, hooklike teeth, than from the pounding closings of those mighty jaws. These animals had not ascended the bar in aggression or menace. They had not come to attack. They had not come to feed. They moved about, here and there, twisting, turning, moving in one direction, then turning back, milling, confused, uncertain. Nothing in their experience, any more than in that of the men of Ar, had prepared them for this chaos, this tumult. Surely they, no more than the men of Ar, had anticipated it. If anything, if it were possible, I thought the beasts to be more distressed, agitated or confused than the men of Ar. I lay back, suddenly, as a long, heavy, scaled shape, on short legs, crawled over my body.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 144





 


Tharlarion - Racing
To The Top


The Mistress did not breed and raise racing tharlarion, incidentally. These are usually larger and more agile beasts than common saddle tharlarion and are smaller, of course, than either draft tharlarion or war tharlarion, the latter used almost exclusively in the tharlarion cavalries of Gor, huge, upright beasts, several tons in weight, guided by voice commands and the blows of spears. The Lady Melpomene of Vonda, incidentally, I had heard, for such stories reach even the stables, had fared badly in the tharlarion races in Venna. I recalled that she had hoped to recoup her lost fortunes in such races. Apparently she had failed to do so. As the story went, and my own knowledge, as far as it went, corroborated the story, she had wagered what were, in effect, her last serious financial resources, the proceeds garnered from the sale of her house in Venna, on the outcomes of certain tharlarion races.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 233


We were astride rented tharlarion, high tharlarion, bipedalian tharlarion. Although our mounts were such, they are not to be confused with the high tharlarion commonly used by Gorean shock cavalry, swift, enormous beasts the charge of which can be so devastating to unformed infantry. If one may use terminology reminiscent of the sea, these were medium-class tharlarion, comparatively light beasts, at least compared to their brethren of the contact cavalries, such cavalries being opposed to the sorts commonly employed in missions such as foraging, scouting, skirmishing and screening troop movements. Rather our mounts were typical of the breeds from which are extracted racing tharlarion, of the sort used, for example, in the Vennan races. To be sure, it is only select varieties of such breeds, such as the Venetzia, Torarii and Thalonian, which are commonly used for the racers. As one might suppose, the blood lines of the racers are carefully kept and registered, as are, incidentally, those of many other sorts of expensive bred animals, such as tarsks, sleen and verr. This remark also holds for certain varieties of expensive bred slaves, the prize crops of the slave farms. Venna, a wealthy town north of Ar, is known for its diversions, in particular, its tharlarion races. Many of Ar's more affluent citizens kept houses in Venna, at least prior to the Cosian war. To date, Venna, though improving her walls and girding herself for defense, had not been touched in the Cosian war. This is perhaps because it is not only the rich of Ar who kept properties within her walls, but those of many other cities, as well, perhaps even of Kasra and Tentium, in Tyros, and of Telnus, Selnar, Temos and Jad, in Cos. We were some pasangs outside Ar. We wore wind scarves. Dust rose up for feet about us. The season was dry. Where our beasts trod the prints of their feet and claws remained evident in the dust. In places the earth cracked under their step.
Magicians of Gor     Book 25     Page 290


Tharlarion, Ellen had been told, were reptilian creatures, some of which were allegedly quite large, and domesticated. Supposedly different varieties were used for various purposes, such as war, haulage and racing. She was not sure, at that time, that such things existed, no more than larls, sleen, tarns, and such.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 154


She did know that a large variety of tharlarion, of bipedalian and quadrupedalian sorts, were bred for diverse purposes, war, transport, reconnaissance, hunting, haulage, racing, and such. The tharlarion she saw was much as she supposed the racing tharlarion might be, though perhaps heavier limbed and sturdier.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 284


The last race, just witnessed, was one of quadrupedalian tharlarion. These are bred for endurance and speed, but, even so, they are ponderous beasts, and no match for the more typical racing tharlarion, which is lighter and bipedalian. It is also carnivorous and more aggressive. In the race they commonly have their jaws bound shut. There have been several cases in which such beasts, before a race, or in the stable or exercise yards, have attacked their competitors, even their handlers. They are occasionally used for scouting or communication. Some hunt wild tarsk with lances from their saddles.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Pages 310 - 311


The next races were with bipedalian tharlarion. Such races, given the beasts, are faster, rougher, and more dangerous. Such races are apparently difficult to anticipate and analyze, presumably from the unpredictability of the beasts, which are sometimes refractory, and sometimes wayward and aggressive. Sometimes a favorite will balk, and an unknown bound to victory. Some people will not bet on such races.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 318


There were four more races, and in some there were as many twenty or thirty tharlarion encircling the long track as many as five times. The competitions were at times unruly, even violent, but no riders or beasts were lost. There are, of course, races of different length, and some beasts are favored in shorter races, and some in longer races, depending on differences in speed and stamina. It is similar with racing slaves, bred or otherwise, and kaiila. Some are superior at short distances, others at longer distances.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 330


I had never seen the bipedalian tharlarion compete. Also, actually, as a matter of fact, I had never seen the smaller, quicker quadrupedalian tharlarion compete either. There are classes of such beasts. I had seen, earlier, some races of the heavier-class quadrupedalian tharlarion, the larger, more ponderous beasts, the maneuvering, the shifting about for position, the lurching, thrusting, and buffeting, the grunting, the crowding. Below, near the rail, one could sense the ground shaking beneath their tread. These were similar to war tharlarion whose charge can shatter phalanxes, breastworks, palisades, and field walls.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 327


There were four more races, and in some there were as many twenty or thirty tharlarion encircling the long track as many as five times. The competitions were at times unruly, even violent, but no riders or beasts were lost. There are, of course, races of different length, and some beasts are favored in shorter races, and some in longer races, depending on differences in speed and stamina. It is similar with racing slaves, bred or otherwise, and kaiila. Some are superior at short distances, others at longer distances.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 330


From the left a small group of riders, on bipedalian saddle tharlarion, were approaching.

There were five in the group. Each carried a lengthy lance.

"Tal!" called Master Desmond to the leader of the small group.

The wagons, down the road, behind us, approaching from the direction of Venna, might not reach the six hundredth pasang until dark.

"Tal!" called the leader of the riders cheerfully to Master Desmond.

"They are hunters," said Astrinax. "Wild tarsk, Voltai tarsk."

The Voltai tarsk, as some forest tarsk, are much larger than the common tarsk. They are often ten to twelve hands at the shoulder. The beast tends to be territorial and aggressive. It is particularly dangerous when wounded.

"Racing tharlarion," said Astrinax, considering the bipedalian mounts of the newcomers.

"No," said Lykos. "Racing tharlarion are longer-legged, and finer-boned."

"True," said Astrinax.

"Those are rugged, powerful animals," said Lykos.

"Hunting tharlarion," said Astrinax.

"Consider the saddles," said Desmond, "there are five boots to a side, as for javelins."

"So?" said Astrinax.

"Perhaps then," said Desmond, "cavalry tharlarion, war tharlarion."
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Pages 374 - 375


Tharlarion races in Venna were underway,
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 190


And races are popular, those of slaves, male and female, of the lofty kaiila, of tharlarion of various sorts, four-legged and two-legged, ponderous and fleet, and of the broad-winged, fierce, mighty tarns. Breeding lines are often kept in such matters. Breeding fees for champion animals can be exorbitant.
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 271





 


Tharlarion - River
To The Top


I crossed the Cartius on a barge, one of several hired by the merchant of the caravan with which I was then serving. These barges, constructed of layered timbers of Ka-la-na wood, are towed by teams of river tharlarion, domesticated, vast, herbivorous, web-footed lizards raised and driven by the Cartius bargemen, fathers and sons, interrelated clans, claiming the status of a caste for themselves. Even with the harnessed might of several huge tharlarion drawing toward the opposite shore the crossing took us several pasangs downriver.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Pages 3 - 4 (footnote)


And, from Lydius, of course, goods of many sorts, though primarily rough goods, such things as tools, crude metal and cloth, brought on barges, towed by tharlarion
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 59


A broad, low-sided barge began to back toward the pier.

It had two large steering oars, manned by bargemen. It was drawn by two gigantic, web-footed river tharlarion.

These were the first tharlarion that I had ever seen. They frightened me. They were scaled, vast and long-necked. Yet in the water it seemed, for all their bulk, they moved delicately. One dipped its head under the surface and, moments later, the head emerged, dripping, the eyes blinking, a silverish fish struggling in the small, triangular-toothed jaws. It engorged the fish, and turned its small head, eyes now unblinking, to regard us. They were harnessed to the broad barge. They were controlled by a bargeman, with a long whipping stick, who was ensconced in a leather basket, part of the harness, slung between the two animals. He would also shout at them, commands, interspersed with florid Gorean profanity, and, slowly, not indelicately, they responded to his cries. The barge grated against the pier.
. . .

The bargeman in the leather basket shouted out and slapped the two tharlarion on the neck with the whipping stick.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Pages 79 - 81


There were other barges on the river, some moving across the river, others coming toward Laura, others departing. Those departing used only the current. Those approaching were drawn by land tharlarion, plodding on log roads along the edges of the river. The land tharlarion can swim barges across the river, but he is not as efficient as the vast river tharlarion. Both sides of the river are used to approach Laura, though the northern shore is favored. Unharnessed tharlarion, returning to Lydius at the mouth of the Laurius, generally follow the southern shore road, which is not as much used by towing tharlarion as the northern.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 81


The tharlarion now turned slowly in the broad river, near Laura, and, under the stick, and cries, of their driver, began to back the barge against its pier. The helmsmen, at their steering oars, shouting and cursing, brought the barge to its mooring. There was a slight shock as the heavy, wet, rolled hides tied at the back of the barge struck the pier. The two extra crewmen, standing on the deck, threw great looped ropes over heavy iron mooring cleats, fastened in the pier. Then they leaped to the pier and, with smaller ropes, fastened to the same cleats, began to draw the barge close to the pier. There is no rear railing on the barges and the barge deck matches the pier in height. Once the ropes are secured the wagons may be rolled directly onto the pier.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 86


"There is safety for you," I said, gesturing across the Laurius with my head, "if you reach the other side."

"There are river sharks," he said. "Tharlarion!"

I regarded him.

He turned and fled to the water. I watched. Luck was not with him. I saw the distant churning in the water, and saw, far off, the narrow head of a river shark, lifting itself, water falling from it, and the dorsal fins, black and triangular, of four others.
Hunters of Gor     Book 8     Page 181


There we saw a tharlarion, sunning itself on a bar. As we neared it, it slipped into the water and swam away.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 282


The river was generally two to four hundred yards wide at these points. At night we would pull the canoe ashore, camouflage it, and make our camp about a half pasang inland, to minimize any danger from possible tharlarion, which tend to remain near the water.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 292


I nodded. The marsh tharlarion, and river tharlarion, of Gor     are, I suspect, genetically different from the alligators, caymens and crocodiles of Earth. I suspect this to be the case because these Earth reptiles are so well adapted to their environments that they have changed very little in tens of millions of years. The marsh and river tharlarion, accordingly, if descended from such beasts, brought long ago to Gor on Voyages of Acquisition by Priest-Kings, would presumably resemble them more closely. On the other hand, of course, I may be mistaken in this matter. It remains my speculation, however, that the resemblance between these forms of beasts, which are considerable, particularly in bodily configuration and disposition, may be accounted for by convergent evolution; this process, alert to the exigencies of survival, has, I suspect, in the context of similar environments, similarly shaped these oviparous predators of two worlds.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 326


"Yes, my master," she said. She looked at me. "Remember," she said, "that I was forced to do this, that I not be hurled to the waiting jaws of crocodiles, beasts much like river tharlarion.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 328


The word 'Mamba' in most of the river dialects does not refer to a venomous reptile as might be expected, given its meaning in English, but, interestingly, is applied rather generally to most types of predatory river tharlarion. The Mamba people were, so to speak, the Tharlarion people. The Mamba people ate human flesh. So, too, does the tharlarion. It is thus, doubtless, that the people obtained their name.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Pages 393 394


This morning, before dawn, I had been put ashore some pasangs upriver. I had gone a pasang inland to avoid river tharlarion and proceeded, paralleling the river, toward Victoria. I had come to the town an Ahn ago.
Rogue of Gor     Book 15     Page 68


There was little to fear from river tharlarion at this latitude.
Smugglers of Gor     Book 32     Page 244


I did know that the dreaded river tharlarion which infest, and terrorize, the Cartius and Ua rivers did not range this far north.
Smugglers of Gor     Book 32     Pages 429 - 430





 


Tharlarion - Rock
To The Top


It smoked, and burned oil, probably from tiny rock tharlarions, abundant south of Tor in the spring.
Tribesmen of Gor     Book 10     Page 222


The Kur caught small rock tharlarion, and on this plenty, too, we feasted.
Tribesmen of Gor     Book 10     Page 278





 


Tharlarion - Saddle
To The Top


Besides the ax, Alars are fond of the Alar sword, a long, heavy, double-edged weapon. Their shields tend to be oval, like those of Turians. Their most common mount is the medium-weight saddle tharlarion, a beast smaller and less powerful, but swifter and more agile, than the common high tharlarion. Their saddles, however, have stirrups, and thus make possible the use of the couched shock lance.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Page 45





 


Tharlarion - Sea
To The Top


"Now this," Saphrar the merchant was telling me, "is the braised liver of the blue, four-spined Cosian wingfish."

This fish is a tiny, delicate fish, blue, about the size of a tarn disk when curled in one's hand; it has three or four slender spines in its dorsal fin, which are poisonous; it is capable of hurling itself from the water and, for brief distances, on its stiff pectoral fins, gliding through the air, usually to evade the smaller sea-tharlarions, which seem to be immune to the poison of the spines.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 84


I conjectured it would be a water animal. Nothing had yet broken the surface. It would probably be a sea-tharlarion, or perhaps several such; sometimes the smaller sea-tharlarion, seemingly not much more than teeth and tail, fluttering in packs beneath the waves, are even more their larger brethren, some of whom in whose jaws an entire galley can be raised from the surface of the sea and snapped in two like a handful of dried reeds of the rence plant.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 204


It is called the wingfish because it can, on its stiff pectoral fins, for short distances, glide through the air, usually in an attempt to flee small sea tharlarion, who are immune to the poison of the spines.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 139


"Tharlarion," I said. We had seen such things before. But they were unusual tharlarion, unlike those with which I had hitherto been familiar, prior to the last few weeks.

"They approach," said Cabot.

I had never seen them come this close. I think they followed the ship for garbage, usually a half pasang behind, in the great ship's wake.

They had learned no fear of us.

And we, as it happened, had learned no fear of them.

Never had they been this close.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Page 185


The gigantic body rolled in the waves, almost at the side of the ship, the water washing over the glistening body. I saw the huge paddlelike appendages of the creature, briefly, and then they were again concealed in the dark waters of Thassa. A tiny head, small when taken in proportion to the whole, surmounting a long, sinuous neck, was raised from the water. The head was triangular, and the jaw, which it opened, revealed a dark tongue, and several rows of tiny teeth. Two round eyes regarded us for a moment, and then the head, on its long neck, disappeared beneath the waves, and the body, too, though I could see it for a few moments. The ship, great as it was, was jarred, as the creature must have brushed against it.

I had never seen tharlarion of this sort before the voyage, and never until now had I seen one this close. It was the size of a small galley. For all its bulk it, buoyed by the water, had moved with grace. It had come for the Parsit, whose school had been disrupted by the passage of the great ship.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Page 188


Oars snapped, and the small galley, the large glistening body rising under it, tipped fearfully to port.

She was one of the six nested galleys, normally housed in the hull of the great ship.

Water poured over the bulwarks. I stood at the oar which I shared with a fellow from Turmus, Licinius Lysias.

The large body, rolling beside us in the water, was almost as large as the galley itself. It turned away from us suddenly, its arched spine high above the water, and buffeted the galley which lay to starboard. There a fellow, cursing, jabbed down at it with a spear. There was a snort of pain and the large form was gone. The blade of the spear was awash with blood.

That would bring the sharks lurking beneath the vines, which extended some yard or two beneath the water.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Page 225


Amongst the slashed, trailing vines between the galleys, sometimes entangling the oars, I saw, occasionally, the dorsal fin of a shark, briefly emergent, then whipping again beneath the water. Usually the fin disappears gracefully, slipping from sight, but the creature was excited. I recalled the tharlarion, struck earlier. There would linger ribbons of blood in the water. The shark of the Vine Sea, though nine-gilled like his cousins of the shorelines and tropics, is sinuous and eel-like, which, I suppose, facilitates its movements amongst the vines. Suddenly, ahead, some twenty yards, between the galleys and the numbers of ship's boats, the gigantic body of the wounded tharlarion emerged, its vast body, neck, head, and wide paddlelike appendages running with water, bright in the sunlight. It bellowed with pain, and dived again. "Back oars!" cried Pertinax. We rocked in place. The galley of Seremides, too, paused. The waters seemed placid. The other galleys, too, farther to starboard, must have held their position, as the great ship behind us neither moved, nor was drawn to the side. "Oars inboard!" called Pertinax. We drew the large levers inward. This is sometimes done in battle, when shearing is imminent. It takes no more than four or five Ihn. The ropes leading back to the great ship, no longer taut, slipped into the water. The oars on the galley commanded by Seremides were similarly retracted. I wondered what horrors might be being enacted in the depths. Many blossoms floated on the surface, amongst the vines. The sea tharlarion, in its varieties, not other than its brethren of the land, breathes air. Like the sea sleen, on the other hand, it can remain submerged for several Ehn, whilst fishing. I stood by the bulwarks and looked down. I could see no shimmer of parsit near the surface. They had departed the area. The sunlight glistened on the water, amongst the streamers of cut vines, the floating blossoms. Four or five Ehn passed. By now I supposed the tharlarion, and its relentless pursuer, or pursuers, might be a pasang or more distant.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Pages 227 - 228


From the left a small group of riders, on bipedalian saddle tharlarion, were approaching.

There were five in the group. Each carried a lengthy lance.

"Tal!" called Master Desmond to the leader of the small group.

The wagons, down the road, behind us, approaching from the direction of Venna, might not reach the six hundredth pasang until dark.

"Tal!" called the leader of the riders cheerfully to Master Desmond.

"They are hunters," said Astrinax. "Wild tarsk, Voltai tarsk."

The Voltai tarsk, as some forest tarsk, are much larger than the common tarsk. They are often ten to twelve hands at the shoulder. The beast tends to be territorial and aggressive. It is particularly dangerous when wounded.

"Racing tharlarion," said Astrinax, considering the bipedalian mounts of the newcomers.

"No," said Lykos. "Racing tharlarion are longer-legged, and finer-boned."

"True," said Astrinax.

"Those are rugged, powerful animals," said Lykos.

"Hunting tharlarion," said Astrinax.

"Consider the saddles," said Desmond, "there are five boots to a side, as for javelins."

"So?" said Astrinax.

"Perhaps then," said Desmond, "cavalry tharlarion, war tharlarion."
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Pages 374 - 375





 


Tharlarion - Sewer
To The Top


"Then a larl, a sleen, or such, perhaps a sewer tharlarion, must be about."
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 264





 


Tharlarion - Short-Legged, Long-Bodied
To The Top


We, the girl, the creature and I, were not alone on the bar. A long-necked, paddle-finned tharlarion was a few yards away, half up on the sand. More dangerous, at least immediately, were two short-legged, long-bodied tharlarion twisting about in the sand near the foot of the pole.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 180


Two short-legged tharlarion passed me, like ships, moving toward the dead ul.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 203


Short-legged tharlarion, incidentally, which we also hunted from time to time, similarly, though usually luring them on the sand where we could more easily deal with them, are quite different. They tend to be much less dilatory in launching their strike.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 326





 


Tharlarion - Six-Toed
To The Top


that thralls should no longer be sacrificed; this was not defended, however, on grounds of the advance of civilization, or such, but rather on the grounds that thralls, like urts and tiny six-toed tharlarion, were not objects worthy of sacrifice;
. . .
the tiny, six-toed rock tharlarion of southern Torvaldsland, favored for their legs and tails, which are speared by children.
Marauders of Gor     Book 9     Page 152





 


Tharlarion - Tiny
To The Top


Immediately following I saw the water seem to glitter for a moment, a rain of yellowish streaks beneath the surface, in the wake of the water tharlarion, doubtless its swarm of scavengers, tiny water tharlarion, about six inches long, little more than teeth and tail.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 1


My leg slipped from the island into the water and suddenly a tiny tharlarion struck it, seizing his bit of flesh and backing, tail whipping, away. My leg was out of the water, but now the water seemed yellow with the flashing bodies of tiny tharlarion, and, beyond them, I heard the hoarse grunting of the great marsh tharlarion, some of which grow to be more than thirty feet in length, weighing more than half a hundred men. Beyond them would be the almost eel-like, long-bodied, nine-gilled Gorean marsh sharks.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 58


that thralls should no longer be sacrificed; this was not defended, however, on grounds of the advance of civilization, or such, but rather on the grounds that thralls, like urts and tiny six-toed tharlarion, were not objects worthy of sacrifice;
. . .
the tiny, six-toed rock tharlarion of southern Torvaldsland, favored for their legs and tails, which are speared by children.
Marauders of Gor     Book 9     Page 152


One of the guards, carrying a long, wooden pole, thrust it down, into the water. The water, judging by the pole, must have been about eight feet deep. The other guard, then, thrusting a heavy piece of meat on one of the hooks, to which a rope was attached, held the meat away from the platform and half submerged in the water. Almost instantly there was a frenzy in the water near the meat, a thrashing and turbulence in the murky liquid. I felt water splashed on my legs, even standing back as I was. Then the guard lifted the roped hook from the water. The meat was gone. Tiny tharlarion, similar to those in the swamp forest south of Ar, dropped, snapping, from the bared hook. Such tiny, swift tharlarion, in their thousands, can take the meat from a kailiauk in an Ehn.
. . .

The small eyes of numerous tharlarion, perhaps some two or three hundred of them, ranging from four to ten inches in length, watching her, nostrils and eyes at the water level, reflected the light of the torch.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Pages 22 - 23


Almost at the same time I saw a small tharlarion, no more than a foot in length, covered with sting flies, splash from the raft into the water.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 164


"There are no bosk or kaiila in the islands," said Tajima. "But since the ship of Tersites has proven that Thassa can be crossed, if with great hazard, such stock may be brought to the islands, perhaps in the next few years. And the only tharlarion I have discovered about I could lift in one hand."
Rebels of Gor     Book 33     Page 420





 


Tharlarion - War
To The Top


And, as the torches burned lower in the wall racks, the singer continued to sing, and sang of gray Pa-Kur, Master of the Assassins, leader of the hordes that fell on Ar after the theft of her Home Stone; and he sang, too, of banners and black helmets, of upraised standards, of the sun flashing on the lifted blades of spears, of high siege towers and deeds, of catapults of Ka-la-na and tem-wood, of the thunder of war tharlarion and the beatings of drums
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 226


We had traveled the Vosk road after crossing the Vosk on barges. It is wide, and built like a great wall, sunk in the earth. It is marked with pasang stones. It is, I suppose, given its nature, a military road leading to the north, broad enough to accommodate war tharlarion, treading abreast,
Slave Girl of Gor     Book 11     Page 138


The tharlarion moved about, water at the stirrup, shifting, tossing its head about. Then its reins hung in the water. It was a small, hunting tharlarion, controlled by bit and bridle. The large upright tharlarion, or war tharlarion, are guided by voice commands and the blows of spears. The man put the knife in his teeth and, fiercely, smote the tharlarion. It grunted and, splashing, fled from the water, running in its birdlike gait across the fields.
Beasts of Gor     Book 12     Page 125


"Yes, Mistress," I said. I proceeded down the street in the direction indicated, leading the tharlarion by its reins. Small saddle tharlarion are generally managed by snout reins. The huge war tharlarion are commonly guided by voice signals and the blows of spears on the face and neck. Draft tharlarion are harnessed, and can be managed either by men, or usually boys, who walk beside them, or by reins and whips, controlled by drivers, men mounted in drawn wagons.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 174


The Mistress did not breed and raise racing tharlarion, incidentally. These are usually larger and more agile beasts than common saddle tharlarion and are smaller, of course, than either draft tharlarion or war tharlarion, the latter used almost exclusively in the tharlarion cavalries of Gor, huge, upright beasts, several tons in weight, guided by voice commands and the blows of spears.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 233


The cart was drawn by a bipedalian tharlarion, a slighter breed than, but related to, and swifter than, the common shock tharlarion used generally by the lancers of Gor     ean heavy cavalry.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Page 229


Tharlarion, Ellen had been told, were reptilian creatures, some of which were allegedly quite large, and domesticated. Supposedly different varieties were used for various purposes, such as war, haulage and racing. She was not sure, at that time, that such things existed, no more than larls, sleen, tarns, and such.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 154


She did know that a large variety of tharlarion, of bipedalian and quadrupedalian sorts, were bred for diverse purposes, war, transport, reconnaissance, hunting, haulage, racing, and such. The tharlarion she saw was much as she supposed the racing tharlarion might be, though perhaps heavier limbed and sturdier.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 284


"You are familiar, then," said Lord Nishida, "with the tactics of a cavalry, its movements, its applications, and such."

"Light cavalry," I said. I had never commanded the massed, thundering, earth-shaking charges of war tharlarion.
Swordsmen of Gor     Book 29     Page 249


The inertia of a tharlarion is formidable. It cannot be turned and halted with the same ease as might, say, a kaiila, or horse, which may be instantly turned or halted, pulled up short, and so on. When the tharlarion has its own head it is difficult to control. Consider the difficulties of trying to communicate with, or control, a boulder tumbling down a mountainside. Draft tharlarion, of which variety these were, are normally driven slowly, and with care. War tharlarion, often larger than draft tharlarion, can be, and are, used in charges. There is little defense against them if encountered on unprepared, level ground. Open formations will try to let them pass, and attack them from behind. Closed formations seek uneven ground, use ditches, diagonally anchored, sharpened stakes, and such. If they become slowed, or are milling, they can be attacked by special troops, with broad-bladed axes, designed to disable or sever a leg. I have never much favored tharlarion in combat, as, if they are confused, or wounded, they become uncontrollable, and are as likely to turn about and plunge into their own troops as those of the enemy, thereby, indiscriminately, wherever they trod or roll, whether amongst friends or foes, spreading disorder and death.
Swordsmen of Gor     Book 29     Page 352


From the left a small group of riders, on bipedalian saddle tharlarion, were approaching.

There were five in the group. Each carried a lengthy lance.

"Tal!" called Master Desmond to the leader of the small group.

The wagons, down the road, behind us, approaching from the direction of Venna, might not reach the six hundredth pasang until dark.

"Tal!" called the leader of the riders cheerfully to Master Desmond.

"They are hunters," said Astrinax. "Wild tarsk, Voltai tarsk."

The Voltai tarsk, as some forest tarsk, are much larger than the common tarsk. They are often ten to twelve hands at the shoulder. The beast tends to be territorial and aggressive. It is particularly dangerous when wounded.

"Racing tharlarion," said Astrinax, considering the bipedalian mounts of the newcomers.

"No," said Lykos. "Racing tharlarion are longer-legged, and finer-boned."

"True," said Astrinax.

"Those are rugged, powerful animals," said Lykos.

"Hunting tharlarion," said Astrinax.

"Consider the saddles," said Desmond, "there are five boots to a side, as for javelins."

"So?" said Astrinax.

"Perhaps then," said Desmond, "cavalry tharlarion, war tharlarion."
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Pages 374 - 375


"The emotive impact of the tarn on battle must, of necessity, be brief," I said. "Its appearance, by itself, is unlikely to rout an enemy more than once or twice. It is not a weapon like an armored tharlarion whose charge might shatter walls.
Rebels of Gor     Book 33     Pages 18 - 19


Our wagon went faster and faster. The domestic tharlarion, both quadrupedalian and bipedalian, differ considerably from most wild tharlarion, most commonly in tractability stamina, and speed. They are bred, over generations, for such attributes. Even so, the ancient brain lurks within those broad skulls, and ancient instincts, bred for the rivers, swamps, and food plains, sometimes reassert themselves, and the beasts, as though then strangers to harnesses, reins, and drive wands, become uncontrollable, and, in some cases, dangerous, Most domestic tharlarion are draft beasts, but they also have their applications in sport and war. There are, for example, racing and hunting tharlarion, and tharlarion bred for battle, some of which, ponderous, and armored, can shatter lines and topple siege towers.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 172





 


Tharlarion - Water
To The Top


Another form of lock difficult to guard against is the pit lock, because of the natural crevices in Gorean tiling commonly found in corridors of cylinders; when tampered with a trap falls away beneath the individual, dropping him to a pit below, usually containing knives fixed in stone, but upon occasion osts, or half-starved sleen or water tharlarion;
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 52


Upon occasion, and it had happened early in Se'Kara this year, the arena is flooded and a sea fight is staged, the waters for the occasion being filled with a variety of unpleasant sea life, water tharlarion, Vosk turtles, and the nine gilled Gorean shark, the latter brought in tanks on river barges up the Vosk, to be then transported in tanks on wagons across the margin of desolation to Ar for the event.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 190


To my right, some two or three feet under the water, I saw the sudden, rolling yellowish flash of the slatted belly of a water tharlarion, turning as it made its swift strike, probably a Vosk carp or marsh turtle.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 1


Immediately following I saw the water seem to glitter for a moment, a rain of yellowish streaks beneath the surface, in the wake of the water tharlarion, doubtless its swarm of scavengers, tiny water tharlarion, about six inches long, little more than teeth and tail.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 1


The rence growers, in spite of the value of their product, and the value of articles taken in exchange for it, and the protection of the marshes, and the rence and fish which give them ample sustenance, do not have an easy life. Not only must they fear the marsh sharks and the carnivorous eels which frequent the lower delta, not to mention the various species of aggressive water tharlarion and the winged, monstrous hissing predatory Ul but they must fear, perhaps most of all, men, and of these, most of all, the men of Port Kar.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 8


It is dangerous to enter the water to make a tether fast because of the predators that frequent the swamp, but several men do so at a time, one man making fast the tether and the others, with him beneath the surface, protecting him with marsh spears, or pounding on metal pieces or wooden rods to drive away, or at least to disconcert and confuse, too inquisitive, undesired visitors, such as the water tharlarion or the long-bodied, nine-gilled marsh shark.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 13


My leg slipped from the island into the water and suddenly a tiny tharlarion struck it, seizing his bit of flesh and backing, tail whipping, away. My leg was out of the water, but now the water seemed yellow with the flashing bodies of tiny tharlarion, and, beyond them, I heard the hoarse grunting of the great marsh tharlarion, some of which grow to be more than thirty feet in length, weighing more than half a hundred men. Beyond them would be the almost eel-like, long-bodied, nine-gilled Gorean marsh sharks.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 58


One of the guards, carrying a long, wooden pole, thrust it down, into the water. The water, judging by the pole, must have been about eight feet deep. The other guard, then, thrusting a heavy piece of meat on one of the hooks, to which a rope was attached, held the meat away from the platform and half submerged in the water. Almost instantly there was a frenzy in the water near the meat, a thrashing and turbulence in the murky liquid. I felt water splashed on my legs, even standing back as I was. Then the guard lifted the roped hook from the water. The meat was gone. Tiny tharlarion, similar to those in the swamp forest south of Ar, dropped, snapping, from the bared hook. Such tiny, swift tharlarion, in their thousands, can take the meat from a kailiauk in an Ehn.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 22


The small eyes of numerous tharlarion, perhaps some two or three hundred of them, ranging from four to ten inches in length, watching her, nostrils and eyes at the water level, reflected the light of the torch.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 23


"Get back!" I shouted, striking at it with the shovel. The edge of the shovel struck, cutting, at the side of its snout. It hissed. The noise is incredibly loud, or seems so, when one is close to it. I saw the pointed tongue. The jaws distended, more than a yard in height, with the rows of backward-leaning fangs.

I had managed to get my foot on the lower jaw and, with the shovel, pry up the jaw, releasing the hold on the lacerated leg of Ayari, who, bleeding, scrambled back. I had felt the draw of his chain against my own collar.

I thrust the shovel out again, against the upper teeth, thrusting back, shouting.

Other men, too, to the right of Ayari and to my left, screamed, and struck at it with their shovels.

Eyes blazing it backed away, twisting, small legs, with the stubby, clawed feet, stabbing at the water. Its gigantic tail thrashed, striking a man, hurling him back a dozen feet. The water was to my thighs. I pushed back again, with the shovel. The transparent eyelids on the beast, under the scaly eyelids, closed and opened. It hissed more, its tongue sopping at the blood of Ayari in its mouth.

"Back!" cried the askari, in the inland language, with his torch, thrusting it into the beast's mouth.

It roared with pain. Then, thrashing, squirming, hissing, it backed off in the shallow water. I saw its eyes and snout, nostrils open, almost level with the water.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Pages 217 - 216


Suddenly the snout of a tharlarion, half lying on the edge of the raft, thrust against the bars. I drew back. It grunted. It kept its snout for a time on the edge of the raft. Then, with soft splash, it slipped back in the dark, shallow water.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 249


We heard a cry of anger and, for an instant, a dark lantern was unshuttered. We saw two men, in the prow of a low, medium-beamed, bargelike vessel. One pushed down with a spear, forcing the broad head of the tharlarion away from the vessel.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Pages 249 - 250


"The sound will carry under the water," said another man. Sound does carry better under water than above it, indeed, some five times as well. The sound, of course, does not well break the surface of the water. Thus the sound, though propagated efficiently either beneath or above the surface, is not well propagated, because of the barrier of the surface, either from beneath the surface to above the surface, or from above the surface to beneath the surface.

"It will attract tharlarion, or fish, and then tharlarion," he said.
. . .

We heard a tharlarion, a largo one, rub up against the bottom of the raft.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Pages 259 - 260


The danger, currently, of the bint and blue grunt, however, was not primarily due to any peril they themselves might represent, particularly as the grunt would not now be schooling, but due to the fact that they, drawn by shed blood, might be followed by tharlarion.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 267


Tende screamed, and we turned about. We saw the body of one of the raiders, seized in the jaws of a tharlarion, pulled beneath the surface. It had been drawn to the area probably by the smell of blood in the water, or by following other forms of marine life, most likely the bint or blue grunt, who would have been attracted by the same stimulus. It is not unusual for tharlarion to follow bint and grunt. They form a portion of its diet. Also they lead it sometimes to larger feedings.

Kisu and I, the girls following, lowered our paddles into the water, and moved the canoe eastward.

Tende, tethered to the sternpost, stumbled after us. Looking back I saw two more tharlarion nearby.

I then again lowered the paddle into the marsh.

Some forty yards behind I could now hear the water churning. The tharlarion, when it takes large prey, such as tabuk or tarsk, or men, commonly drags the victim beneath the surface, where it drowns. It then tears it to pieces in the bottom mud, engorging it, limb by limb.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Pages 270 - 271


I looked back again to the vicinity of the mud raft. I saw one body move as though leaping out of the water and then saw that it was caught in the jaws of two rearing tharlarion, who fought for it. Each would keep part of it.

I saw four more tharlarion, low on the surface, eyes and nostrils above the surface, knifing toward the feast.

"Kisu!" wept Tende. "Please, Kisu!"

But he did not look at her.

We continued with our paddling.

"It will be only a matter of time, Kisu," I said, in Gorean, "until the tharlarion have fed and there is no more there. Some may then follow a scent in the water, that of sweat and fear."
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 271


"Look," said Ayari, after a time, looking back.

"Are they there now?" asked Kisu.

"Yes," said Ayari, "four of them, tharlarion."

Tende looked back over her shoulder.

At first I could not discern them. Then, because of the subtle movement of the water, I saw them. Their bodies, except for their eyes and nostrils, and some ridges on their backs, as they swam, were submerged.

They were about eighty yards away. They did not hurry, but moved with the fluid menace of their kind.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 272


The tharlarion stopped swimming now; they drifted toward her. This has the effect of minimizing the pressure waves projected before their bodies, an effect that might otherwise alert a wary, but unsuspecting prey. With tiny backward movements of their short legs they then became motionless, watching her.

"What is your name?" asked Kisu.

"Whatever Master pleases," she wept. The answer was suitable.

"Do you beg slavery?" he asked.

"Yes, yes, Master!" she cried.

"Perhaps I shall consider it, Girl," said he.

"Please, Master!" she cried.

With a tiny, almost imperceptible movement, the tiniest motion of their short legs, the four tharlarion, almost ringing the girl, seemed to drift again toward her, like half-submerged, meaningless logs, save for the methodically of their convergence. There would then be a sudden lunge, and the snapping of the great jaws, the fighting for the prey.

"Master!" cried Tende.

Kisu, suddenly, reached out and, seizing the girl by the bound wrists, she screaming, wrenched her bodily in a shower of water across the thwart of the canoe.

At the same time, sensing the sudden movement of the prey, the four tharlarion, lashing the water with their tails, cut toward her. Two of them struck toward the stern of the canoe. Another uttered an explosive cry, half grunt, half bellow, which, in rage and frustration, sounded across the marsh. The fourth, jaws distended, more than a yard in width, attacked the side of the canoe. I beat it back with the paddle.

The canoe began to tip backward as another tharlarion clambered, half out of the water, onto its stern. Kisu thrust at it with his paddle. It bit the paddle in two. The girls, clinging to the thwarts, screamed. Ayari moved toward the bow of the canoe, half standing, to try to balance the weight. With the splintered handle of the paddle Kisu jabbed at the tharlarion. It slipped back off the stern. The canoe struck with a crash in the water, nearly capsizing. Another tharlarion struck at the side of the canoe with its snout. I heard wood crack, but not break. It turned, to use its tail. Another tharlarion slipped beneath the canoe.

"Move the canoe!" cried Kisu. "Do not let them under it!" I thrust at the water with the paddle, and then, as the tharlarion began to surface under the slender vessel, pushed down at it. The canoe slipped off its back, and righted itself. Ayari, seizing one of the paddles, and I, then moved the canoe forward.

The tharlarion were quick to follow, snapping and bellowing. Kisu, with the splintered paddle handle, thrust back one of them.

Then I saw a handful of dried fish fly into the maw of one of the beasts. Ayari, his paddle discarded, was reaching into the cylindrical basket of dried fish, torn open, which had been among the supplies of the canoe. He hurled more fish to another tharlarion, which, with a snapping, popping noise, clamped shut its jaws on the salty provender. He similarly threw fish to the other two beasts.

"Hand me another paddle," I said to the first girl in the canoe. She was crouching, trembling, head down, in the bottom of the canoe.

"Perform, Slave," I said.

"Yes, Master," she whispered. She handed the paddle back to the blond-haired barbarian who, half in shock, numb, handed it back to me. She looked at me, frightened, and then looked away. I think she knew that she again belonged to me. I pulled the paddle from her fingers and passed it back to Kisu, who took it calmly. Kisu and I then began to propel the canoe eastward. Tende, wrists bound beneath her body, lay shuddering between Kisu and myself, in the bottom of the canoe. Ayari then threw bits of fish into the water, where the tharlarion must swim to them, to obtain them. He threw successive tidbits further and further away, behind the canoe. Then he scattered several scraps of fish at one time, in an arc behind the tharlarion. Kisu and I continued to propel the canoe from the vicinity. The tharlarion, distracted and feeding, did not follow.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Pages 273 - 275


There we saw a tharlarion, sunning itself on a bar. As we neared it, it slipped into the water and swam away.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 282


The river was generally two to four hundred yards wide at these points. At night we would pull the canoe ashore, camouflage it, and make our camp about a half pasang inland, to minimize any danger from possible tharlarion, which tend to remain near the water.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 292





 


Tharlarion - Wild
To The Top


"There is a carnivorous tharlarion, a wild tharlarion, in the vicinity," he said. "Hold tightly."

Luckily I did immediately as he had advised, fixing my grip deep in the long black hairs that covered his thorax, for Nar suddenly raced to a nearby swamp tree and scuttled high into its branches. About two or three minutes later I heard the hunger grunt of a wild tharlarion and a moment afterward the piercing scream of a terrified girl.
. . .

Scarcely had she broken into the clearing, splashing through the shallow greenish - waters near us than the fearsome head of a wild tharlarion poked through the reeds, its round, shining eyes gleaming with excitement, its vast arc of a mouth swung open. Almost too rapid to be visible, a long brown lash of a tongue darted from its mouth and curled around the slender, helpless figure of the girl. She screamed hysterically, trying to force the adhesive band from her waist.
. . .

A shattering squeal of pain rent the heavy air of the swamp forest, and the tharlarion actually reared on its hind legs and spun about in pain, sucking the brown stump of its tongue back into its mouth with an ugly popping noise. Then it splashed on its back in the water, rolled quickly onto its legs, and began to move its head in rapid scanning motions. Almost immediately its eyes fixed on me, its mouth, now filled with a colorless scum, opened, revealing its teeth ridges.

It charged, its great webbed feet striking the marsh water like explosions. In an instant the mouth had snapped for me, and I had left the mark of my blade deep in the teeth ridges of its lower jaw. It snapped again, and I knelt, the jaws passing over me as I thrust upward with the sword, piercing the neck. It backed away to about four or five paces, slowly, unsteadily. The tongue, or rather its stump, flitted in and out of its mouth two or three times, as if the creature could not understand that it was no longer at its disposal.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Pages 84 - 85


She stopped and shuddered. Her robes still bore the wide lateral stain where the tongue of the tharlarion had wrapped itself.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 91


"There are no bosk or kaiila in the islands," said Tajima. "But since the ship of Tersites has proven that Thassa can be crossed, if with great hazard, such stock may be brought to the islands, perhaps in the next few years. And the only tharlarion I have discovered about I could lift in one hand."
Rebels of Gor     Book 33     Page 420


Our wagon went faster and faster. The domestic tharlarion, both quadrupedalian and bipedalian, differ considerably from most wild tharlarion, most commonly in tractability stamina, and speed.
Plunder of Gor     Book 34     Page 172





 


Tharlarion - Winged - Ul
To The Top


Also, at night, crossing the bright disks of Gor's three moons might occasionally be seen the silent, predatory shadow of the Ul, a giant pterodactyl ranging far from its native swamps in the delta of the Vosk.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 26


Only one creature in the marshes dares to outline itself against the sky, the predatory Ul, the winged tharlarion.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 1


I was not particularly surprised at finding a bit of rep-cloth tied on the rence plant, for the delta is inhabited. Man has not surrendered it entirely to the tharlarion, the Ul and the salt leach.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 6


The rence growers, in spite of the value of their product, and the value of articles taken in exchange for it, and the protection of the marshes, and the rence and fish which give them ample sustenance, do not have an easy life. Not only must they fear the marsh sharks and the carnivorous eels which frequent the lower delta, not to mention the various species of aggressive water tharlarion and the winged, monstrous hissing predatory Ul but they must fear, perhaps most of all, men, and of these, most of all, the men of Port Kar.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 8


I saw an Ul, the winged tharlarion, high overhead, beating its lonely way eastward over the marsh.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 61


I awakened stiff in the cold of the marsh dawn, hearing the movement of the wind through the dim sedges, the cries of an occasional marsh gant darting among the rushes. Somewhere in the distance I heard the grunting of tharlarion. High overhead, passing, I heard the squeals of four Uls, beating their way eastward on webbed, scaled wings. I lay there for a time, feeling the rence beneath my back, staring up at the gray, empty sky.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 77


The delta of the Vosk, for most practical purposes, a vast marsh, an area of thousands of square pasangs, where the Vosk washes down to the sea, is closed to shipping. It is trackless and treacherous, and the habitat of marsh tharlarion and the predatory Ul, a winged lizard with wing-spans of several feet.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 26


We heard, outside, the screaming of a predatory ul, a gigantic, toothed, winged lizard, soaring over the marshes.
Savages of Gor     Book 17     Page 18


We heard, again, the screaming of the ul outside the building. The tarns in the tarn cot moved about. The ul will not attack a tarn. The tarn could tear it to pieces.
Savages of Gor     Book 17     Page 19


I lay there for a time, looking up at the sky. I once saw, outlined against one of the moons, membranous, clawed wings outspread, the soaring shape of the giant, predatory ul, the dreaded winged tharlarion of the delta. It is, normally, the only creature that dares to outline itself against the sky in the area.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 90


I had never been so close to such a thing before. I had not realized they were so large.

It was five days since I had freed myself of the manacles. I had been moving northward, across the sluggish current, for three days.

It opened its wings, suddenly. Their span must have been twenty-five to thirty feet Gorean.

I had left the raft a few yards back, on another bar. The rence craft I had taken from the men of Ar was rotted and treacherous. It had sunk into the water even before I had left the rence in which I had originally taken cover. Its paddle I had retained but it was not of much use, given the weight of the raft. I had, the day before yesterday, however, found an abandoned pole which proved useful in propelling it. The pole's gilding had been muchly burned away. It, itself, however, was serviceable.

I had seen the creature hovering about, then alighting, dropping out of sight, among the rence. Curious I had moved the raft toward the place.

It was then that I had heard a woman's scream, long, terrified and piteous.

I had not hurried toward the source of the sound as circumspection seemed to me appropriate. It was not that I doubted the authenticity of the woman's terror. I did not think that a lure girl, for example, could have managed that particular note of terror in the scream. It might, on the other hand, I supposed, be managed quite easily by a bait girl, tethered, bound, to a stake like a verr, by rencer hunters to attract dangerous prey, usually tharlarion. They do not use their own women for this, of course, but other women, usually slaves. To be sure, there had been in the scream not only unmitigated terror, but a kind of special, pleading helplessness as well. That sound suggested to me that the woman was not merely calling herself to the attention of hunters, desperately alerting them to the presence of the quarry, but that there might be no hunters about, or no one of whom she knew. It suggested that she might be alone. There is quite a difference, you see, between a bait girl who knows that hunters are about, usually concealed in a blind, whose skill will presumably protect her, and a girl with no knowledge of nearby succor. To be sure, it is possible for a hunter to miss, and that is why the rencers do not use their own women, or their own free women, as bait. That she not be put out as tethered tharlarion bait is an additional inducement for the female slaves of rencers to prove particularly pleasing to their masters. Such slaves are abjectly dutiful. But then this is common among all Gorean female slaves. They may be slain if they are not.

I scouted the area. I detected no blind, no evidence of recent occupancy by men, at least within the last several Ahn. The marsh beetle crawls upon the sand at night and its tiny passage can be marked in the sand. Of the footprints I saw several were traversed, like valleys, by the path of the marsh beetle. Accordingly the prints had been made before the preceding night. The crumbling at their edges, too, suggested a passage of several Ahn, perhaps that they had been made as long ago as yesterday morning, or the day before yesterday.

I had then heard a repetition of that piteous, lengthy scream. I had also seen then, as I had come closer, the small head of the creature, small considering the size of its body, and the span of its wings, lift up, above the rence, with its long narrow, toothed jaws, like a long snout or bill, with that long, narrow extension of skin and bone in the back, balancing the weight of the long, narrow jaws, contributing, too, given the creature's weight and general ungainliness in structure, to stability in flight, particularly in soaring.

I had emerged from the rence.

The creature had turned to regard me.

It had opened its wings, suddenly. Their span must have been twenty-five to thirty foot Gorean. Then it closed them, folding them back, against its body.

I was quite impressed with it. Never had I been so close to such a thing before.

It uttered a hissing, grunting sound, expelling air from its lungs. It had a long, snakelike tail, terminating with a flat, spadelike structure. This tail lashed, the spadelike structure dashing sand about. This tail, with its termination, too, I think, had its role to play in flight, primarily one of increasing stability.

Erected in the sand, there was a stout pole, upright, about four inches in diameter. This pole was about seven feet in height. Toward the bottom of the pole, about a yard from the sand, there was a rounded crosspiece, about a foot in length. This was inserted through, and fastened within a hole in the pole. Above this crosspiece, something like three and a half feet Gorean above it, also inserted through, and fastened within a hole in the pole, there was another crosspiece, a longer one, about a yard in length. These crosspieces were both about two inches in diameter. Had they been intended for the keeping of a man they would have been thicker, the accommodating pole then being proportionally larger. As it was they were more than sufficient. She was blond. Her feet were on the lower crosspiece, thongs fastening them well in place. Her arms had been hooked over the upper crosspiece and then kept in place by thongs fastening her wrists together, before her body.

She threw her head back wildly, her hair falling back over the top of the pole, about at the base of her neck, looked up at the sky, and again screamed.

This sound attracted the attention of the creature again. It had alighted a few yards before the pole.

She had not seen me.

Wildly she struggled, surging, squirming, against the bonds. The sight of a woman struggling against bonds, as the sight of one in bonds, even in so simple a device as slave bracelets, is sexually stimulatory, of course.

We, the girl, the creature and I, were not alone on the bar. A long-necked, paddle-finned tharlarion was a few yards away, half up on the sand. More dangerous, at least immediately, were two short-legged, long-bodied tharlarion twisting about in the sand near the foot of the pole.

Again the girl struggled. Then, again, she was held as helplessly as ever.

Yes, I thought, she was pretty.

I knew her, of course.

She had been put out for tharlarion. The hatred of the rencers, it seemed, had been such that in spite of her comeliness, the usually most successful defense, and salvation, of the female, they had not sold her off, nor accepted her themselves, as a slave.

I wondered if they had been right.

It was acceptable, of course, what was being done to her, as she was a free person. And had she been a slave, such, of course, might have been done to her at no more than the whim of a master. To be sure, there are much better things to do with a female slave.

Again she screamed and struggled.

Yes, I thought, many better, things.

I wondered how she would look in a collar. Well, I thought. Yet I reminded myself, she was a free woman. That made her quite special in a way, an inconvenient way.

The long-jawed creature turned toward the long-necked tharlarion and hissed menacingly. Slowly the long-necked tharlarion, pushing back with its paddlelike appendages, slipped back into the marsh. It turned and withdrew, half submerged.

"Go away! Go away!" screamed the girl to the large creature at the edge of the beach.

Such exclamations, of course, are understandable. They are very natural, I suppose. On the other hand, unless they are being uttered knowingly as mere noise, they do, upon reflection, seem a bit odd. For example, surely one does not expect such a beast to understand Gorean. Too, did she not understand that she had been put out for tharlarion and, considering her elevation from the sand, perhaps for just such a creature? Too, if she were not taken from the perch, so to speak, would she not, in time, perish there of thirst, hunger or exposure? Should she not eagerly welcome the jaws?

"Go away!" she screamed.

Apparently not.

I suppose a certain amount of hysteria, or temporary irrationality, is to be allowed to a woman in such a situation. Had I been in a similar plight I might have behaved similarly. It is easier for one in my position to be critical, I supposed, than for one in hers. Also, who knows, perhaps the creature is a pet, or might respond to certain words in Gorean, or, if one is desperate enough, clutching at whatever straws might present themselves, English, or Italian; or Finnish.

The creature stalked forward four or five yards. It was now a few feet from her. Its head was some twelve feet from the ground.

"Go away!" she wept. "Go away!"

Again it opened its wings. These are of skin and stretch from the jointed, hind legs, clawed, of the creature to an extremely long, fourth digit on its clawed hand. It hissed at the tharlarion near the pole. One moved away. The other stood its ground, opening its own jaws, hissing.

The creature then snapped its wings, again and again. I had not realized the blast that might be created from that, and was thrown back, stumbling, into the rence. I fought my way forward, again, then, against the gusts, as though through a storm in the Tahari. I held my arm before my face. I heard the short-legged tharlarion make a strange noise and saw it lifted from the sand and shaken. I heard its back snap. With a beating of the giant wings the creature ascended, struggling with the weight of the tharlarion, and then, after a moment, perhaps from a height of a hundred feet or so, dropped it into the marsh. I did not see it hit the water, for the rence, but I saw, two or three hundred feet away, the splash. Its shadow was then over the water, rapidly approaching, and, in a moment, its clawed feet striking down into the sand, it alit on the beach, much where it had been before. The whole thing had taken no more than a few Ihn. I had not realized the power of the creature, or that it could lift that much weight. The weight of a man, then, or a woman, would have been nothing to it. There is little wonder, I thought, that many take the predatory ul, the winged tharlarion, to be the monarch of the delta.

It now, again, stalked toward the girl.

She threw her head back, her hair back over the top of the pole, screaming.

She struggled, wildly.

Again she could not escape, of course. She had been excellently tied.

She had been put there for tharlarion, I thought. That is what it is all about. Why should I interfere?

She began to sob.

The ul, the winged tharlarion, was now before her. She was within its reach.

She struggled. Yes, she was pretty. Unfortunately she was a free woman. Yet, I supposed, that such an absurdity, such an oversight of law, and civilization, was not irremediable. I saw the jaws of the ul, the winged tharlarion, open. Why should I interfere, I asked myself.

I had little doubt, from what I had seen, that it could pull the girl from the pole, or even, by means of the girl and her bonds, the pole from the sand.

I saw her press back against the pole, even more tightly against it than she was held by her unslippable bonds.

Why should I interfere, I asked myself.

She threw her head to the side, crying out with misery. The ul stretched forth its neck to remove her from the pole.

"Ho!" I cried. "Ho!"

The beast turned to regard me. The female made some startled, helpless, wild hysterical noise.

I picked up a large rock and threw it against that huge body, striking it on wingskin stretched between its leg and arm, on the left.

She twisted about, wildly, trying to see me. "Save me! Save me! Save me!" she cried.

The ul, unfortunately, in my opinion, did not seem much bothered about the stone I had thrown. To be sure, it could have brained a man.

I picked up another stone and let it fly. This struck it on the chest.

"Away!" I cried. "Away!" I did not stop to consider until later that it was not likely the ul could understand Gorean. After all, I was now dealing with my own case. As everyone knows, one's own case is always different, in many ways, from that of others. Besides, what did one expect one to say, say, "Come over here, old chap. Shall we have tea?" or something along those lines. Certainly not. Besides, by means of such cries one may at least express oneself, ventilate emotion, and such. And I understood them, if not the creature. Surely that was sufficient.

"Help!" she cried.

Better, I thought, that she might have said, "Flee, save yourself!" That would have been advice well worth considering.

The ul took a step in my direction. Unfortunately, it did not fear men. I had hoped it would take wing at my cries, or, surely, from the stones. It had not, however, done so. I took a step back, into the rence. It took a step forward. I unsheathed my blade. If it were its intention to smite me with the wind from the beating of those mighty wings I thought it best to withdraw into the rence. If I lost my footing I could lie on my back and defend myself, as I could, with the blade. From what I had seen it would presumably try to pick me up in its jaws. I suspected I could probably defend myself from that approach. If I knew little of uls, it, too, I supposed, would know little of men, and steel. But the ul did not beat its wings. Rather it stalked to me and suddenly darted its jaws forward, its head turned, I slashed at the jaws with the blade, and slivers of bone, and teeth, sprayed from my attack. The ul pulled back its head. I do not think it felt much discomfort. Then it suddenly smote its wings and ascended two or three yards into the air, hovering, reaching for me with its clawed feet. I crouched down, half blinded by the particles, sand and rence, smiting against me, and slashed up, cutting at the feet. I felt contact with the blade and had blood on it. The ul then rose higher out of my reach, hovering, then backed, in flight, onto the beach, and alit. Blood was in the sand about its left, clawed foot. It lifted its foot from the sand, sand clinging to it in the blood, and licked it, with its long tongue. It then looked at me, again. It snapped its wings. The uniform of Ar was torn back in the blast. It seemed angry. Surely it would now take its departure. It did not, however, seem inclined to do so. Had I not defeated it? Had I not, at least, discouraged it? Should it not now, in all propriety, take wing and seek the assuagements of its hunger elsewhere, in the rich feasts offered by the delta.

But its attentions seemed much fastened upon me. One might have thought it a sleen, a creature famed for its tenacity. Let it meet then, I thought, one of man's most dangerous allies, the mystery of flame.

It was my intention to gather some dry rence and light it with the fire-maker, a simple device, little more than a wheel and flint, from my pouch. However, it began to advance, quickly, its jaws open. I withdrew, stumbling, back, into the rence. It began to pursue me, sometimes hovering, its wings beating over the rence, flattening the stalks, forcing them to the water, agitating the water itself, producing waves fleeing before that force. I struck up at it but could do little damage. Once I fell but took refuge beneath a tree trunk in the marsh, washed down from the Vosk. I did have its blood on me.

Twice I managed to hack at the jaw. Then it swept up, and circled, whether in temporary withdrawal because of pain or because it had lost contact with me, I do not know. I feared it might return to the vicinity of the girl. "Ho!" I cried, waving upward toward it. I sheathed my sword. I began to gather rence frenziedly. The creature began to turn in the air. I struck sparks into the dry sheaves I held. The creature was now descending again, soaring toward me, its legs down, its claws open. I evaded its strike. It pulled up again. The rence was now lit. I set fire to the dry tops of the rence as I waded among them. In a moment, though it would be only for an Ehn or so, the rence about me burst into flame. Smoke, too, billowed upward. Into this fiery welcome the ul descended but, in a moment, hissing in pain, drew away, and disappeared over the rence. I discarded the rence I had used as a torch. It was burned down almost to my hand. Some of it hissed in the water; a little, still aflame, floated beside me for a moment, then went out. I stood among smoking, blackened rence stalks. I saw no more of the ul. I then waded back to the land. I was shaking. I wanted nothing more to do with uls, or their kind.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Pages 178 - 185


Then I saw, about a hundred yards away, to the right, the head of the ul, stalking, bobbing, over the rence. Tenacious, indeed, I thought. I heard screams, splashing.

Then the ul struck its huge wings against the air, lifting itself above the rence, hovering.

The screams stopped.

The ul then began to climb, then turn, and circle, scanning. Its quarry, I supposed, must be hiding in the rence. It had lost contact with it. Then I saw the total alteration in the attitude of the monster, and it turned, and began to glide downward, silently, toward the marsh. When it struck the marsh water splashed up, furrowing, twenty or thirty feet in the air. I heard more screaming. I caught sight of the Lady Ina plunging through the marsh, her hands extended, her hair wild behind her. Following her, over the rence I now again saw the small head of the ul, bobbing, inquisitive, birdlike.

I drew my blade and began to hasten toward the island, intending to intersect the path of the Lady Ina's flight. Once I caught a glimpse of her again, small, white, blond, terrified, crashing through rence. There was no difficulty, of course, in keeping track of the ul, whose head overtopped the rence. Once I saw its entire body, moving with great speed, impelled by a snap of those huge skin wings. Then again, only its head. In a sense, of course, though I seldom saw her, it was also easy to surmise the position of the Lady Ina. The purposefulness of the ul located her for me. She was before him, fleeing. It was on her trail he trod. Then I again saw her plunging through the marsh, pushing her way through rence, approaching the edge of the island. She was wading, falling, getting up, wading again. Then she emerged onto the island, the sand to her ankles. She looked wildly about. Then the ul burst through the rence behind her. She looked back and screamed. She tried to turn then, to run, but stumbled and fell into the sand, and in that instant the ul was upon her, pinning her to the sand with one giant, clawed foot. She squirmed wildly in the sand, half covered, and the ul, then, locked its foot about her. It then put its other foot on her, as well, and also closed it about her body. She was as helpless as though she were clutched in the talons of a tarn. She lifted her head inches from the sand and screamed. The ul had reached its head down, its jaws gaping, when it saw me approaching, some yards away. It then lifted its head, closing its jaws. It watched me approaching. It then, for what reason I am not sure, perhaps because of its memory of fire, perhaps because of the injuries I had caused it, perhaps because of a mere desire to safeguard its prey, smote its great wings, and, blasting sand about, bending nearby rence almost to the water, began to rise into the air. My eyes half closed, crouching, fighting my way through the sand and wind, I lunged toward it. I did not attack its feet for fear of striking the girl. I, then, was under it, running. It, hovering, backed over the marsh. I leapt upward with the sword and the blade met the beating wing on its forward strike and the blade and my arm, too, given the force, penetrated it like paper, and the thing rose up uttering a wild, hissing noise, clutching the girl, I hanging in the rent wing. Its flight was erratic and it climbed, and spun, and circled against me, the injured wing, air passing through it, burdened, too, with my weight, muchly ineffective. I swung in the wing, dangling. I saw the marsh dizzily spinning beneath me. The noise of the creature now was a wild deafening squeal. The monster's quarry, its creamy flesh in its grasp, its blond hair spread in the wind, made gasping, sobbing, choking noises. I think it could hardly breathe, for the movements, the ascents and descents, the turning in the air. My arm slipped down through the skin. I feared I might rip free and fall to the marsh below, sometimes a hundred feet below, sometimes as little as thirty or forty feet. The creature tried to bite at me, to pull me from its wing, and I kicked at it, and thrust at its jaws, pushing them up, away. Once my hand-slipped inside the lower jaw and I managed to withdraw it only an instant before the upper jaw, like the lid of a box, snapped shut against the lower. Then the ul was spinning erratically again, and we were turning head over heels. I then managed, hanging there, swinging, when it again achieved some stability, to transfer the sword to my left hand, under the wing. With my left hand I thrust the blade again and again into its left side. I could get little leverage for these thrusts, but they were repeated, again and again, and blood told of counts tallied. Then the jaws opened widely, perhaps four or five feet in width, and reached for me. I tried to swing back but could move very little. I thrust the blade out, between the jaws. The jaws snapped downward and the point of the sword emerged through the upper jaw and the lower jaw was tight under the hilt of the sword. The tongue, moving about, from one side to the other, cutting itself, bleeding, pushed against my hand. The creature, turning and spinning, hissing, tried to close its jaws. This put the blade higher through the upper jaw. Closer and closer to my hand came the relentless upper jaw, until it was stopped, held by the guard. The tongue pushed against my hand and the hilt. It then, spinning about, climbing, tried to open its jaws. I tried to turn the blade, to keep the jaws pinned shut. Its left eye was balefully upon me. Its left side bled in a dozen places. Then it began to fall, erratically, turning in the air, and then, somehow, again, it regained some stability. I saw what I took to be the island below, to the left. We were perhaps fifty or seventy feet then from the rence. It put back its head, lifting it, twisting it, and given the power of its body, the sword, fixed still in its jaw, was torn from my grasp. I heard the girl scream, released. I saw her falling toward the marsh below. Unburdened then to that extent the creature tried again to climb. It could manage only a few feet. The great wings no longer beat frenziedly. Then it tried to reach me with its legs. Its left leg, given my position, could not do so. Reaching across its body it tried to reach me, too, with its right leg. I tried to pull back. Claws tore at me, raking my leg. Then it tried to reach me with the claws of its right forelimb, the wing claws, at the arch of the wing. These claws, I think, are largely vestigial, given the modification of the forelimb to support the wing. They may, however, together with those of the feet, enable the creature, in suitable environments, to cling, batlike, to surfaces, such as rock faces and trees. They may also be used in intraspecific aggression. I pushed them away. In trying to reach me with these claws, of course, it lost aerial stability, and began to fall, twisting downward. It recovered in a moment and then, with the wing itself, began to beat, and thrust, at me. In attempting this, however, it again lost aerial stability, and began once more to plummet, spinning toward the marsh. It opened its wings to try to climb again, perhaps some fifty feet or so, above the marsh, and did climb, yard by yard, as though it would ascend to the clouds, but then it fell slowly, its wings beating, toward the marsh. It was suddenly in the water and I freed myself of the wing and backed away. I saw the claws of the forelimb, and the wing itself, push against where I had been. I stood back. It was lying there then, half submerged, its wing twisted and torn. The head turned to regard me. I waited for a time. The body went lower in the water. I then, carefully, freed my sword from its jaws. I then thrust once, deeply, cleanly, into its left side. It was then dead. The ul, I thought, is not the monarch of the delta. Man, small man, puny man, with his weapons, is the monarch of the delta. There was much blood in the water and I waded back toward the island. Two short-legged tharlarion passed me, like ships, moving toward the dead ul.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Pages 200 - 203


"There may be others," she said.

"Probably not in this vicinity," I said. The larger uls, as opposed to the several smaller varieties, some as small as jards, tend to be isolated and territorial.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 203


Poling in the trackless delta, the rope on their neck, they are well aware of the wilderness, the vastness, the treacherous byways, the quicksand, the heat, the insects, leeches, delta sharks, winged, predatory uls, and, in particular, marsh tharlarion, which often scout the boats, and accompany them, little but the eyes visible, for pasangs.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 487


The delta is rich in fish and birds. Also, as would be expected, given the abundance of game, it is home, as well, to various predators, in particular, the marsh shark and various forms of tharlarion, some, like the Ul, winged.
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 133


It was like an immense, dark, silent, soaring shadow. I had seen few sights so seemingly laden with menace. "That is an Ul," said Bruno, "a broad-winged, claw-winged, flying tharlarion."
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 251





 


Toad
To The Top


"What a day," he said. "You will all be browned as a prairie toad, for which I could probably get more money. It is hot enough to burn the turban of a Priest-King."
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 212


"Surely you can see what a poor slave she is," said Portus, "how insignificant she is, what poor goods she is."

"I cannot really see that," said the officer.

"I have seen toads who are more attractive," said Selius Arconious.

How hateful you are, Selius Arconious, she thought.

"Toads like this one sell well," said the officer.
Prize of Gor     Book 27     Page 329





 


Turtle
To The Top


From her flesh at one point I could see the gleaming eyes of a small organism, golden and about the size of a child's turtle, scrambling, trying to pull itself from the leathery shell. With my sword I dug out the egg and crushed it and its occupant with the heel of my sandal on the stone floor.
Priest-Kings of Gor     Book 3     Page 179


I thought of the webs of spiders and turtles running to the sea.
Marauders of Gor     Book 9     Page 52


The Kur looked upon the loaf, as we might have looked on grass, or wood, or the shell of a turtle.
Marauders of Gor     Book 9     Page 179


On ridgework near the water turtles and tharlarion sunned themselves.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 417





 


Turtle - Hook-Beak
To The Top


Indeed, it was unlikely my body would reach the delta at all. It was far more likely that one of the water lizards of the Vosk or one of the great hook-beaked turtles of the river would seize my body and drag it and the frame under the water, destroying me in the mud below.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 138





 


Turtle - Marsh
To The Top


To my right, some two or three feet under the water, I saw the sudden, rolling yellowish flash of the slatted belly of a water tharlarion, turning as it made its swift strike, probably a Vosk carp or marsh turtle.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 1


"It is a marsh turtle, a large one," said the fellow, "come up on the bar."

"Why would it do that?" I asked. "There are men here, many of them."

"Now they have it confused, with fire and spears," reported the man, standing beside me. "It does not know which way to turn."

"Why is it not retreating to the water?" I asked, alarmed.

"It does not know which way to turn," he said. "They have it surrounded now. It is not moving now. It is in its shell now!"

"Together, men!" I heard.

There was a hissing sound, the grunting of men.

"They have it on its back now," said the fellow, pleased. "For once we shall eat well in the delta."

"Why has it come up on the bar, with men here!" I said. I felt suddenly very helpless in the manacles, the ropes.
. . .

"It wants the meat," I said. "Drive it away! That is why the turtle came to the bar. It was fleeing!"
. . .

"Slay the turtle!" called another.

"It is done!" said a fellow.
. . .

"Are you hungry?" he asked.

"Yes," I said. I could smell the turtle. I could hear the good humor, the jokes, of the men.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Pages 100 - 101


Five days ago, moving east, we had come to the island where the giant turtle had been killed. We had managed to use its righted shell as part of the cover in one of our camps, digging sleeping places beneath it.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 338





 


Turtle - Vosk
To The Top


It might, too, be a Vosk turtle. Some of them are gigantic, almost impossible to kill, persistent, carnivorous. Yet, if it had been a tharlarion or a Vosk turtle, it might well have broken the surface for air. It did not. This reasoning also led me to suppose that it would not be likely to be anything like a water sleen or a giant urt from the canals of Port Kar. These two, even before the tharlarion or the turtle, would by now, presumably, have surfaced to breathe.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Pages 204 - 205


Upon occasion, and it had happened early in Se'Kara this year, the arena is flooded and a sea fight is staged, the waters for the occasion being filled with a variety of unpleasant sea life, water tharlarion, Vosk turtles, and the nine gilled Gorean shark, the latter brought in tanks on river barges up the Vosk, to be then transported in tanks on wagons across the margin of desolation to Ar for the event.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 190





 


Ul
To The Top


Also, at night, crossing the bright disks of Gor's three moons might occasionally be seen the silent, predatory shadow of the Ul, a giant pterodactyl ranging far from its native swamps in the delta of the Vosk.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 26


Only one creature in the marshes dares to outline itself against the sky, the predatory Ul, the winged tharlarion.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 1


I was not particularly surprised at finding a bit of rep-cloth tied on the rence plant, for the delta is inhabited. Man has not surrendered it entirely to the tharlarion, the Ul and the salt leach.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 6


The rence growers, in spite of the value of their product, and the value of articles taken in exchange for it, and the protection of the marshes, and the rence and fish which give them ample sustenance, do not have an easy life. Not only must they fear the marsh sharks and the carnivorous eels which frequent the lower delta, not to mention the various species of aggressive water tharlarion and the winged, monstrous hissing predatory Ul but they must fear, perhaps most of all, men, and of these, most of all, the men of Port Kar.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 8


I saw an Ul, the winged tharlarion, high overhead, beating its lonely way eastward over the marsh.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 61


I awakened stiff in the cold of the marsh dawn, hearing the movement of the wind through the dim sedges, the cries of an occasional marsh gant darting among the rushes. Somewhere in the distance I heard the grunting of tharlarion. High overhead, passing, I heard the squeals of four Uls, beating their way eastward on webbed, scaled wings. I lay there for a time, feeling the rence beneath my back, staring up at the gray, empty sky.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 77


The delta of the Vosk, for most practical purposes, a vast marsh, an area of thousands of square pasangs, where the Vosk washes down to the sea, is closed to shipping. It is trackless and treacherous, and the habitat of marsh tharlarion and the predatory Ul, a winged lizard with wing-spans of several feet.
Explorers of Gor     Book 13     Page 26


We heard, outside, the screaming of a predatory ul, a gigantic, toothed, winged lizard, soaring over the marshes.
Savages of Gor     Book 17     Page 18


We heard, again, the screaming of the ul outside the building. The tarns in the tarn cot moved about. The ul will not attack a tarn. The tarn could tear it to pieces.
Savages of Gor     Book 17     Page 19


I lay there for a time, looking up at the sky. I once saw, outlined against one of the moons, membranous, clawed wings outspread, the soaring shape of the giant, predatory ul, the dreaded winged tharlarion of the delta. It is, normally, the only creature that dares to outline itself against the sky in the area.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 90


I had never been so close to such a thing before. I had not realized they were so large.

It was five days since I had freed myself of the manacles. I had been moving northward, across the sluggish current, for three days.

It opened its wings, suddenly. Their span must have been twenty-five to thirty feet Gorean.

I had left the raft a few yards back, on another bar. The rence craft I had taken from the men of Ar was rotted and treacherous. It had sunk into the water even before I had left the rence in which I had originally taken cover. Its paddle I had retained but it was not of much use, given the weight of the raft. I had, the day before yesterday, however, found an abandoned pole which proved useful in propelling it. The pole's gilding had been muchly burned away. It, itself, however, was serviceable.

I had seen the creature hovering about, then alighting, dropping out of sight, among the rence. Curious I had moved the raft toward the place.

It was then that I had heard a woman's scream, long, terrified and piteous.

I had not hurried toward the source of the sound as circumspection seemed to me appropriate. It was not that I doubted the authenticity of the woman's terror. I did not think that a lure girl, for example, could have managed that particular note of terror in the scream. It might, on the other hand, I supposed, be managed quite easily by a bait girl, tethered, bound, to a stake like a verr, by rencer hunters to attract dangerous prey, usually tharlarion. They do not use their own women for this, of course, but other women, usually slaves. To be sure, there had been in the scream not only unmitigated terror, but a kind of special, pleading helplessness as well. That sound suggested to me that the woman was not merely calling herself to the attention of hunters, desperately alerting them to the presence of the quarry, but that there might be no hunters about, or no one of whom she knew. It suggested that she might be alone. There is quite a difference, you see, between a bait girl who knows that hunters are about, usually concealed in a blind, whose skill will presumably protect her, and a girl with no knowledge of nearby succor. To be sure, it is possible for a hunter to miss, and that is why the rencers do not use their own women, or their own free women, as bait. That she not be put out as tethered tharlarion bait is an additional inducement for the female slaves of rencers to prove particularly pleasing to their masters. Such slaves are abjectly dutiful. But then this is common among all Gorean female slaves. They may be slain if they are not.

I scouted the area. I detected no blind, no evidence of recent occupancy by men, at least within the last several Ahn. The marsh beetle crawls upon the sand at night and its tiny passage can be marked in the sand. Of the footprints I saw several were traversed, like valleys, by the path of the marsh beetle. Accordingly the prints had been made before the preceding night. The crumbling at their edges, too, suggested a passage of several Ahn, perhaps that they had been made as long ago as yesterday morning, or the day before yesterday.

I had then heard a repetition of that piteous, lengthy scream. I had also seen then, as I had come closer, the small head of the creature, small considering the size of its body, and the span of its wings, lift up, above the rence, with its long narrow, toothed jaws, like a long snout or bill, with that long, narrow extension of skin and bone in the back, balancing the weight of the long, narrow jaws, contributing, too, given the creature's weight and general ungainliness in structure, to stability in flight, particularly in soaring.

I had emerged from the rence.

The creature had turned to regard me.

It had opened its wings, suddenly. Their span must have been twenty-five to thirty foot Gorean. Then it closed them, folding them back, against its body.

I was quite impressed with it. Never had I been so close to such a thing before.

It uttered a hissing, grunting sound, expelling air from its lungs. It had a long, snakelike tail, terminating with a flat, spadelike structure. This tail lashed, the spadelike structure dashing sand about. This tail, with its termination, too, I think, had its role to play in flight, primarily one of increasing stability.

Erected in the sand, there was a stout pole, upright, about four inches in diameter. This pole was about seven feet in height. Toward the bottom of the pole, about a yard from the sand, there was a rounded crosspiece, about a foot in length. This was inserted through, and fastened within a hole in the pole. Above this crosspiece, something like three and a half feet Gorean above it, also inserted through, and fastened within a hole in the pole, there was another crosspiece, a longer one, about a yard in length. These crosspieces were both about two inches in diameter. Had they been intended for the keeping of a man they would have been thicker, the accommodating pole then being proportionally larger. As it was they were more than sufficient. She was blond. Her feet were on the lower crosspiece, thongs fastening them well in place. Her arms had been hooked over the upper crosspiece and then kept in place by thongs fastening her wrists together, before her body.

She threw her head back wildly, her hair falling back over the top of the pole, about at the base of her neck, looked up at the sky, and again screamed.

This sound attracted the attention of the creature again. It had alighted a few yards before the pole.

She had not seen me.

Wildly she struggled, surging, squirming, against the bonds. The sight of a woman struggling against bonds, as the sight of one in bonds, even in so simple a device as slave bracelets, is sexually stimulatory, of course.

We, the girl, the creature and I, were not alone on the bar. A long-necked, paddle-finned tharlarion was a few yards away, half up on the sand. More dangerous, at least immediately, were two short-legged, long-bodied tharlarion twisting about in the sand near the foot of the pole.

Again the girl struggled. Then, again, she was held as helplessly as ever.

Yes, I thought, she was pretty.

I knew her, of course.

She had been put out for tharlarion. The hatred of the rencers, it seemed, had been such that in spite of her comeliness, the usually most successful defense, and salvation, of the female, they had not sold her off, nor accepted her themselves, as a slave.

I wondered if they had been right.

It was acceptable, of course, what was being done to her, as she was a free person. And had she been a slave, such, of course, might have been done to her at no more than the whim of a master. To be sure, there are much better things to do with a female slave.

Again she screamed and struggled.

Yes, I thought, many better, things.

I wondered how she would look in a collar. Well, I thought. Yet I reminded myself, she was a free woman. That made her quite special in a way, an inconvenient way.

The long-jawed creature turned toward the long-necked tharlarion and hissed menacingly. Slowly the long-necked tharlarion, pushing back with its paddlelike appendages, slipped back into the marsh. It turned and withdrew, half submerged.

"Go away! Go away!" screamed the girl to the large creature at the edge of the beach.

Such exclamations, of course, are understandable. They are very natural, I suppose. On the other hand, unless they are being uttered knowingly as mere noise, they do, upon reflection, seem a bit odd. For example, surely one does not expect such a beast to understand Gorean. Too, did she not understand that she had been put out for tharlarion and, considering her elevation from the sand, perhaps for just such a creature? Too, if she were not taken from the perch, so to speak, would she not, in time, perish there of thirst, hunger or exposure? Should she not eagerly welcome the jaws?

"Go away!" she screamed.

Apparently not.

I suppose a certain amount of hysteria, or temporary irrationality, is to be allowed to a woman in such a situation. Had I been in a similar plight I might have behaved similarly. It is easier for one in my position to be critical, I supposed, than for one in hers. Also, who knows, perhaps the creature is a pet, or might respond to certain words in Gorean, or, if one is desperate enough, clutching at whatever straws might present themselves, English, or Italian; or Finnish.

The creature stalked forward four or five yards. It was now a few feet from her. Its head was some twelve feet from the ground.

"Go away!" she wept. "Go away!"

Again it opened its wings. These are of skin and stretch from the jointed, hind legs, clawed, of the creature to an extremely long, fourth digit on its clawed hand. It hissed at the tharlarion near the pole. One moved away. The other stood its ground, opening its own jaws, hissing.

The creature then snapped its wings, again and again. I had not realized the blast that might be created from that, and was thrown back, stumbling, into the rence. I fought my way forward, again, then, against the gusts, as though through a storm in the Tahari. I held my arm before my face. I heard the short-legged tharlarion make a strange noise and saw it lifted from the sand and shaken. I heard its back snap. With a beating of the giant wings the creature ascended, struggling with the weight of the tharlarion, and then, after a moment, perhaps from a height of a hundred feet or so, dropped it into the marsh. I did not see it hit the water, for the rence, but I saw, two or three hundred feet away, the splash. Its shadow was then over the water, rapidly approaching, and, in a moment, its clawed feet striking down into the sand, it alit on the beach, much where it had been before. The whole thing had taken no more than a few Ihn. I had not realized the power of the creature, or that it could lift that much weight. The weight of a man, then, or a woman, would have been nothing to it. There is little wonder, I thought, that many take the predatory ul, the winged tharlarion, to be the monarch of the delta.

It now, again, stalked toward the girl.

She threw her head back, her hair back over the top of the pole, screaming.

She struggled, wildly.

Again she could not escape, of course. She had been excellently tied.

She had been put there for tharlarion, I thought. That is what it is all about. Why should I interfere?

She began to sob.

The ul, the winged tharlarion, was now before her. She was within its reach.

She struggled. Yes, she was pretty. Unfortunately she was a free woman. Yet, I supposed, that such an absurdity, such an oversight of law, and civilization, was not irremediable. I saw the jaws of the ul, the winged tharlarion, open. Why should I interfere, I asked myself.

I had little doubt, from what I had seen, that it could pull the girl from the pole, or even, by means of the girl and her bonds, the pole from the sand.

I saw her press back against the pole, even more tightly against it than she was held by her unslippable bonds.

Why should I interfere, I asked myself.

She threw her head to the side, crying out with misery. The ul stretched forth its neck to remove her from the pole.

"Ho!" I cried. "Ho!"

The beast turned to regard me. The female made some startled, helpless, wild hysterical noise.

I picked up a large rock and threw it against that huge body, striking it on wingskin stretched between its leg and arm, on the left.

She twisted about, wildly, trying to see me. "Save me! Save me! Save me!" she cried.

The ul, unfortunately, in my opinion, did not seem much bothered about the stone I had thrown. To be sure, it could have brained a man.

I picked up another stone and let it fly. This struck it on the chest.

"Away!" I cried. "Away!" I did not stop to consider until later that it was not likely the ul could understand Gorean. After all, I was now dealing with my own case. As everyone knows, one's own case is always different, in many ways, from that of others. Besides, what did one expect one to say, say, "Come over here, old chap. Shall we have tea?" or something along those lines. Certainly not. Besides, by means of such cries one may at least express oneself, ventilate emotion, and such. And I understood them, if not the creature. Surely that was sufficient.

"Help!" she cried.

Better, I thought, that she might have said, "Flee, save yourself!" That would have been advice well worth considering.

The ul took a step in my direction. Unfortunately, it did not fear men. I had hoped it would take wing at my cries, or, surely, from the stones. It had not, however, done so. I took a step back, into the rence. It took a step forward. I unsheathed my blade. If it were its intention to smite me with the wind from the beating of those mighty wings I thought it best to withdraw into the rence. If I lost my footing I could lie on my back and defend myself, as I could, with the blade. From what I had seen it would presumably try to pick me up in its jaws. I suspected I could probably defend myself from that approach. If I knew little of uls, it, too, I supposed, would know little of men, and steel. But the ul did not beat its wings. Rather it stalked to me and suddenly darted its jaws forward, its head turned, I slashed at the jaws with the blade, and slivers of bone, and teeth, sprayed from my attack. The ul pulled back its head. I do not think it felt much discomfort. Then it suddenly smote its wings and ascended two or three yards into the air, hovering, reaching for me with its clawed feet. I crouched down, half blinded by the particles, sand and rence, smiting against me, and slashed up, cutting at the feet. I felt contact with the blade and had blood on it. The ul then rose higher out of my reach, hovering, then backed, in flight, onto the beach, and alit. Blood was in the sand about its left, clawed foot. It lifted its foot from the sand, sand clinging to it in the blood, and licked it, with its long tongue. It then looked at me, again. It snapped its wings. The uniform of Ar was torn back in the blast. It seemed angry. Surely it would now take its departure. It did not, however, seem inclined to do so. Had I not defeated it? Had I not, at least, discouraged it? Should it not now, in all propriety, take wing and seek the assuagements of its hunger elsewhere, in the rich feasts offered by the delta.

But its attentions seemed much fastened upon me. One might have thought it a sleen, a creature famed for its tenacity. Let it meet then, I thought, one of man's most dangerous allies, the mystery of flame.

It was my intention to gather some dry rence and light it with the fire-maker, a simple device, little more than a wheel and flint, from my pouch. However, it began to advance, quickly, its jaws open. I withdrew, stumbling, back, into the rence. It began to pursue me, sometimes hovering, its wings beating over the rence, flattening the stalks, forcing them to the water, agitating the water itself, producing waves fleeing before that force. I struck up at it but could do little damage. Once I fell but took refuge beneath a tree trunk in the marsh, washed down from the Vosk. I did have its blood on me.

Twice I managed to hack at the jaw. Then it swept up, and circled, whether in temporary withdrawal because of pain or because it had lost contact with me, I do not know. I feared it might return to the vicinity of the girl. "Ho!" I cried, waving upward toward it. I sheathed my sword. I began to gather rence frenziedly. The creature began to turn in the air. I struck sparks into the dry sheaves I held. The creature was now descending again, soaring toward me, its legs down, its claws open. I evaded its strike. It pulled up again. The rence was now lit. I set fire to the dry tops of the rence as I waded among them. In a moment, though it would be only for an Ehn or so, the rence about me burst into flame. Smoke, too, billowed upward. Into this fiery welcome the ul descended but, in a moment, hissing in pain, drew away, and disappeared over the rence. I discarded the rence I had used as a torch. It was burned down almost to my hand. Some of it hissed in the water; a little, still aflame, floated beside me for a moment, then went out. I stood among smoking, blackened rence stalks. I saw no more of the ul. I then waded back to the land. I was shaking. I wanted nothing more to do with uls, or their kind.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Pages 178 - 185


Then I saw, about a hundred yards away, to the right, the head of the ul, stalking, bobbing, over the rence. Tenacious, indeed, I thought. I heard screams, splashing.

Then the ul struck its huge wings against the air, lifting itself above the rence, hovering.

The screams stopped.

The ul then began to climb, then turn, and circle, scanning. Its quarry, I supposed, must be hiding in the rence. It had lost contact with it. Then I saw the total alteration in the attitude of the monster, and it turned, and began to glide downward, silently, toward the marsh. When it struck the marsh water splashed up, furrowing, twenty or thirty feet in the air. I heard more screaming. I caught sight of the Lady Ina plunging through the marsh, her hands extended, her hair wild behind her. Following her, over the rence I now again saw the small head of the ul, bobbing, inquisitive, birdlike.

I drew my blade and began to hasten toward the island, intending to intersect the path of the Lady Ina's flight. Once I caught a glimpse of her again, small, white, blond, terrified, crashing through rence. There was no difficulty, of course, in keeping track of the ul, whose head overtopped the rence. Once I saw its entire body, moving with great speed, impelled by a snap of those huge skin wings. Then again, only its head. In a sense, of course, though I seldom saw her, it was also easy to surmise the position of the Lady Ina. The purposefulness of the ul located her for me. She was before him, fleeing. It was on her trail he trod. Then I again saw her plunging through the marsh, pushing her way through rence, approaching the edge of the island. She was wading, falling, getting up, wading again. Then she emerged onto the island, the sand to her ankles. She looked wildly about. Then the ul burst through the rence behind her. She looked back and screamed. She tried to turn then, to run, but stumbled and fell into the sand, and in that instant the ul was upon her, pinning her to the sand with one giant, clawed foot. She squirmed wildly in the sand, half covered, and the ul, then, locked its foot about her. It then put its other foot on her, as well, and also closed it about her body. She was as helpless as though she were clutched in the talons of a tarn. She lifted her head inches from the sand and screamed. The ul had reached its head down, its jaws gaping, when it saw me approaching, some yards away. It then lifted its head, closing its jaws. It watched me approaching. It then, for what reason I am not sure, perhaps because of its memory of fire, perhaps because of the injuries I had caused it, perhaps because of a mere desire to safeguard its prey, smote its great wings, and, blasting sand about, bending nearby rence almost to the water, began to rise into the air. My eyes half closed, crouching, fighting my way through the sand and wind, I lunged toward it. I did not attack its feet for fear of striking the girl. I, then, was under it, running. It, hovering, backed over the marsh. I leapt upward with the sword and the blade met the beating wing on its forward strike and the blade and my arm, too, given the force, penetrated it like paper, and the thing rose up uttering a wild, hissing noise, clutching the girl, I hanging in the rent wing. Its flight was erratic and it climbed, and spun, and circled against me, the injured wing, air passing through it, burdened, too, with my weight, muchly ineffective. I swung in the wing, dangling. I saw the marsh dizzily spinning beneath me. The noise of the creature now was a wild deafening squeal. The monster's quarry, its creamy flesh in its grasp, its blond hair spread in the wind, made gasping, sobbing, choking noises. I think it could hardly breathe, for the movements, the ascents and descents, the turning in the air. My arm slipped down through the skin. I feared I might rip free and fall to the marsh below, sometimes a hundred feet below, sometimes as little as thirty or forty feet. The creature tried to bite at me, to pull me from its wing, and I kicked at it, and thrust at its jaws, pushing them up, away. Once my hand-slipped inside the lower jaw and I managed to withdraw it only an instant before the upper jaw, like the lid of a box, snapped shut against the lower. Then the ul was spinning erratically again, and we were turning head over heels. I then managed, hanging there, swinging, when it again achieved some stability, to transfer the sword to my left hand, under the wing. With my left hand I thrust the blade again and again into its left side. I could get little leverage for these thrusts, but they were repeated, again and again, and blood told of counts tallied. Then the jaws opened widely, perhaps four or five feet in width, and reached for me. I tried to swing back but could move very little. I thrust the blade out, between the jaws. The jaws snapped downward and the point of the sword emerged through the upper jaw and the lower jaw was tight under the hilt of the sword. The tongue, moving about, from one side to the other, cutting itself, bleeding, pushed against my hand. The creature, turning and spinning, hissing, tried to close its jaws. This put the blade higher through the upper jaw. Closer and closer to my hand came the relentless upper jaw, until it was stopped, held by the guard. The tongue pushed against my hand and the hilt. It then, spinning about, climbing, tried to open its jaws. I tried to turn the blade, to keep the jaws pinned shut. Its left eye was balefully upon me. Its left side bled in a dozen places. Then it began to fall, erratically, turning in the air, and then, somehow, again, it regained some stability. I saw what I took to be the island below, to the left. We were perhaps fifty or seventy feet then from the rence. It put back its head, lifting it, twisting it, and given the power of its body, the sword, fixed still in its jaw, was torn from my grasp. I heard the girl scream, released. I saw her falling toward the marsh below. Unburdened then to that extent the creature tried again to climb. It could manage only a few feet. The great wings no longer beat frenziedly. Then it tried to reach me with its legs. Its left leg, given my position, could not do so. Reaching across its body it tried to reach me, too, with its right leg. I tried to pull back. Claws tore at me, raking my leg. Then it tried to reach me with the claws of its right forelimb, the wing claws, at the arch of the wing. These claws, I think, are largely vestigial, given the modification of the forelimb to support the wing. They may, however, together with those of the feet, enable the creature, in suitable environments, to cling, batlike, to surfaces, such as rock faces and trees. They may also be used in intraspecific aggression. I pushed them away. In trying to reach me with these claws, of course, it lost aerial stability, and began to fall, twisting downward. It recovered in a moment and then, with the wing itself, began to beat, and thrust, at me. In attempting this, however, it again lost aerial stability, and began once more to plummet, spinning toward the marsh. It opened its wings to try to climb again, perhaps some fifty feet or so, above the marsh, and did climb, yard by yard, as though it would ascend to the clouds, but then it fell slowly, its wings beating, toward the marsh. It was suddenly in the water and I freed myself of the wing and backed away. I saw the claws of the forelimb, and the wing itself, push against where I had been. I stood back. It was lying there then, half submerged, its wing twisted and torn. The head turned to regard me. I waited for a time. The body went lower in the water. I then, carefully, freed my sword from its jaws. I then thrust once, deeply, cleanly, into its left side. It was then dead. The ul, I thought, is not the monarch of the delta. Man, small man, puny man, with his weapons, is the monarch of the delta. There was much blood in the water and I waded back toward the island. Two short-legged tharlarion passed me, like ships, moving toward the dead ul.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Pages 200 - 203


"There may be others," she said.

"Probably not in this vicinity," I said. The larger uls, as opposed to the several smaller varieties, some as small as jards, tend to be isolated and territorial.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 203


Poling in the trackless delta, the rope on their neck, they are well aware of the wilderness, the vastness, the treacherous byways, the quicksand, the heat, the insects, leeches, delta sharks, winged, predatory uls, and, in particular, marsh tharlarion, which often scout the boats, and accompany them, little but the eyes visible, for pasangs.
Conspirators of Gor     Book 31     Page 487


The delta is rich in fish and birds. Also, as would be expected, given the abundance of game, it is home, as well, to various predators, in particular, the marsh shark and various forms of tharlarion, some, like the Ul, winged.
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 133


It was like an immense, dark, silent, soaring shadow. I had seen few sights so seemingly laden with menace. "That is an Ul," said Bruno, "a broad-winged, claw-winged, flying tharlarion."
Quarry of Gor     Book 35     Page 251




















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