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Bo Johansson's Map of Chalion's world

Lois McMaster Bujold Fan Art

Lois McMaster Bujold's novel "The Curse of Chalion" give many tantalizing hints about the geography of Chalion and its world. But I prefer to have a map to look at, so I fired up my paint program to draw these maps, based on some hints from the book:
  1. Chalion is in the southern hemisphere.
  2. Chalion is landlocked, and share the peninsula with Ibra to the west, Brajar to the east and the Roknari Princedoms to the north.
  3. North of the peninsula is the Roknari Archipelago.
  4. To the south is "Great Darthaca" beyond the mountains, but there is also Yiss, a more or less autonomous Darthacan province or equivalent in the mountains.
  5. Lois McMaster Bujold has stated that the geography of Chalion is based on the Iberian peninsula, turned upside down and placed in the southern hemisphere.
  6. I have played with satellite photos and created "Satellite maps" of the Ibran Peninsula and the Roknari Archipelago.
  7. My maps are perhaps too closely based on our world's Iberian Peninsula, and perhaps the archipelago shold have many more and smaller islands.
  8. New: There is now an official map of the Ibran Peninsula, I have modified my maps to agree with it.
  9. Extra: I have also attempted to draw the arms of Chalion.

World Here is a very tentative map of one hemisphere of Chalion's world, centered at latitude 30 S.

The world map is here just to show where Chalion is located on the globe, the other continents and seas are just scrambled parts of our Earth.

Sat-map4 There is now an official map of the Ibran Peninsula, you can find it at
  • I have made an Ibran Peninsula "satellite map" based the official map, 600x450 or 900x670 jpg image.
Source of satellite image: by the Earth Observatory team.
Chalion On the "local map" everything except the Ibran Peninsula is quite speculative.
  • Br = Brajar
  • Ch = Chalion
  • Da = Darthaca
  • Ib = Ibra
  • RA = The Roknari Archipelago
  • RP = The Roknari Princedoms
  • S.Ib = South Ibra
  • Yi = Yiss
Sat-maps The same is true for the "satellite maps". Source of images: by the Earth Observatory team.

Here are four attempts to show how the arms of Chalion might look:

Chalion arms 5 Chalion arms 6
Larger image Larger image
Chalion arms 7 Chalion arms 5e Chalion arms 8
Larger image Larger image Larger image

Quoting from "The Curse of Chalion" chapter 7:

"The groom wore the service livery of the Zangre, tunic and leggings and a knee-length tabard with the symbol of Chalion, a royal leopard rampant upon a stylized castle, stitched upon it."
And Lois McMaster Bujold said (on the Lois-Bujold mailing list):
    I was actually envisioning the castle as looking much like the rook on a chess piece.  I'm a little vague on what makes a leopard royal myself, so use your imaginations...

    Ta, L.

The five "Arms of Chalion" images are also available as 500x500 px images (505x505 for the mosaic/cross-stitch pattern), a version of the third "embossed" image is used for my suggested Bujold Mailing List logos.

Barrayar maps Back to the Fan Mapmaker page, and the provisional Map of Barrayar
Vor crests Go to the Vor Arms or Logos page.
Quintarian Web Browser All Bujold fans have surely waited for the Quintarian Web Browser, reskinned versions of Opera, Mozilla Firefox, Mozilla Suite, or Netscape with a "Chalion-inspired" look.
Vorkosigan ComConsole There is also the Vorkosigan ComConsole, reskinned versions of Opera, Mozilla Firefox, Mozilla Suite, Netscape, or MS Internet Explorer with a "Vorkosigan" look.

webring See my entry in The Lois McMaster Bujold Webring.

All comments about my pages are welcome to
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© Bo Johansson 2009-12-04