Hyperborea is a rugged and desolate country, similar in geography and terrain to Nordheim. With much of its territory adjacent to or north of the Arctic Circle, the earliest people in this land suffered hardship beyond comprehension. They were Hybori — the northern tribe of Bori — though they became Hyperboreans, distinct from the Hyborians that ventured southward and founded most of the Dreaming West. These early Hyperboreans were eventually sublimated or ousted by the horse nomads who settled into the land, using the primitive Hyperborean villages as an apparent springboard into rapid development of walled communities, among the first of the northern people to dwell in cities.

The land itself is barren, with sparse steppes wracked with snow and wind to the east, and rocky foothills and ice to the west, eventually giving way to nothing but icy sheets and uninhabitable land to the north. Hyperborea is alternately rocky, hilly, and sweeping, its western border defined by a light mountain range that separates it from Asgard, though, like the hyperborean wind that passes through these mountains, Hyperborean slave-takers cross this range freely when raiding. Here their cities and fortresses are stronger and older, more settled and sprawling, while to the east the cities and towns are more modest, though also fortified against raids from the Hyrkanian hordes that sweep across the cold steppes in search of plunder and slaves.

The folk of Hyperborea are a strange and fey lot, a surly and dangerous people despised by most in the North for their wanton slavery and habit of waging war upon those who share borders. Their land is as bleak and cold as Asgard, though the southern reaches of the land are more favorable. There, the Hyperboreans can farm and herd to the best of their abilities, with small farming-steads outside their cities. Long ago, though, the folk now inhabiting Hyperborea were once akin to the people of Hyrkania, likely departing that land and heading seaward from the east. These were a race of horsemen, great tribes of tent-dwellers, living beneath roofs of horsehide, traversing the land far and wide, following the seasons, hunting and living off the land.

From many captive foreign strains, the Hyperborean bloodline has become mixed, but they are still a distinct people, the tallest by far in the northern continent. Gigantic and blonde are the Hyperboreans, prone to gauntness and light eyes, and there is a crudeness to their appearance, a big-boned and rough-hewn sort of mien that is disquieting, as if they are a cruder sort of folk than those from other lands. As a people, they are oft taciturn and sullen, boastful and careless with their words. Suitably, their language is coarse and thick. They speak slowly, their voices generally deep and rumbling, and if any member of that race showed joy, it was a grim and mirthless sort of celebration.

Lands of the Hyborian Age

Explore the World of Conan