The Golden Compass Imagery

The Golden Compass Imagery

Jordan College

There is no “richer and more influential college” in Oxford than Jordan College. In addition, it may be “the biggest one”, but probably no one knows. Since the early Middle Ages and until the middle of the eighteenth century, Jordan College was continuously being built, and now it is consisted of “three giant buildings, each of which has a huge courtyard in the shape of an irregular quadrangle”. The final effect is one of “jumbled and squalid grandeur”. The image of the College gives an impression of the well-developed architecture.

Mrs. Coulter

Mrs. Coulter is “young and beautiful”. Her “black and sleek hair” frames her cheeks. Mrs. Coulter, on the other hand, is “not like any female” Lyra has seen, and certainly “not like the two serious elderly ladies”, who are the other female guests. Mrs. Coulter “has such an air of glamour” that Lyra is entranced. She can hardly take her eyes off her. The image of Mrs. Coulter gives an impression of the ideal woman, who has a real beauty.

Alethiometer (the golden compass)

The Alethiometer is a very outlandish thing. “The crystal hemisphere” in the center is shimmering with colored lights. “The skillfully executed copper case” is similar to a compass or a very large pocket watch, because “needles are clearly visible through the crystal”, but they do not indicate the numbers. Also, there is a series of miniature pictures – “an anchor, an hourglass crowned with a skull, a bull, a hive…” The image of the golden compass gives an impression of the magic thing that can fulfill all the desires.

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