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The Dark Crystal Wiki

The Arathim are a plague. A scourge upon Thra.

The Arathim were a symbiotic family of sentient, eusocial arthropod-like creatures, sporting innumerable subspecies which differed in size and number of limbs. All subspecies were psychically united by a hive-mind known as the Ascendancy.[4] Among the more prominent subspecies were Spitters, which constituted the Arathim's main fighting force, and Threaders, who had the ability to control Gelfling and other creatures. The Spitters themselves came in several different forms, including Silk Spitters, responsible for constructing nests, Poison Spitters, which were nearly wiped out by skekVar, and the Zoa, who had evolved to live as parasites in the sea-beast Mondo Levidian.

The Arathim were one of Thra's oldest races,[4] and initially lived in the caves of Grot, before being banished to the catacombs of the Castle of the Crystal by the Skeksis when they refused to serve them as an army.[5] The Skeksis then handed Grot to the ancestors of the Grottan Clan, thus causing the Arathim to feel bitter towards Gelfling.[1] Hundreds of trine later, the Arathim fought against the Stonewood Clan in what became known as the Arathim Wars, but were defeated during the First Battle of Stone-in-the-Wood.[6]

Thirty trine later, skekSo the Emperor convinced the Arathim to join the Skeksis in their war against the Gelfling resistance, promising to return their ancient homeland to them. Arathim forces lead by skekVar successfully defeated the Stonewood Rebellion, and then headed to Grot, unaware that the caves had been infected by the Darkening and that the Skeksis intended for them to die there.[1]

After securing Grot, the Arathim were trapped and attacked by darkened Nurlocs. They subsequently agreed to switch their allegiance to the Gelflings after Deet showed them a safe exit from the caves and promised to share Grot with them in the future.[7] The Ascendancy participated in the later stages of the Second Battle of Stone-in-the-Wood, driving back the Skeksis and joining the Gelflings in the victory celebrations.[8]

During and after the battle, SkekTek created the first Garthim using Arathim and Gruenak corpses.[8]

Other continuities[]

In J.M. Lee's young adult novels, the Arathim are also referred to as spiders, and are described as much more spiderlike than their Age of Resistance counterparts. It was also established that there were more types of Arathim, including the Crystal Singers and the death stingers. They were also known to cause landslides, stopping travelers from proceeding.[9][10][11][12]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Age of resistance logo Age of Resistance – "Time to Make...My Move". Netflix. August 30, 2019
  2. Age of resistance logo – Erman, Matthew., Age of Resistance – The Journey into the Mondo Levidian, #11, Archaia, USA, September 2020
  3. Age of resistance logo – Andelfinger, Nicole., Age of Resistance – The Quest for the Dual Glaive, #1, Archaia, USA, September 25, 2019
  4. 4.0 4.1 Lee, J. M. (2019), Heroes of the Resistance, Penguin Young Readers Licences, ISBN 978-0.593-09539-3
  5. Cesare, A. & Compiet, I. (2020), The Dark Crystal Bestiary: The Definitive Guide to the Creatures of Thra, Insight Editions, p. 70, ISBN 1683838211
  6. Age of resistance logo Age of Resistance – "The Crystal Calls". Netflix. August 30, 2019
  7. Age of resistance logo Age of Resistance – "Prophets Don't Know Everything". Netflix. August 30, 2019
  8. 8.0 8.1 Age of resistance logo Age of Resistance – "A Single Piece Was Lost". Netflix. August 30, 2019
  9. Lee, J.M (2016), Shadows of the Dark Crystal, Grosset & Dunlap, 2016, ISBN 978-0448482897
  10. Lee, J.M (2017), Song of the Dark Crystal, Grosset & Dunlap, ISBN 978-0399539817
  11. Lee, J.M (2018), Tides of the Dark Crystal, Penguin Workshop, ISBN 978-0399539848
  12. Lee, J.M (2019), Flames of the Dark Crystal, Penguin Workshop, ISBN 978-0399539879