The urRu, also known as Mystics, were a race that inhabited the Valley of the Standing Stones. They originated during Thra's second Great Conjunction, when the Fallen urSkeks attempted to purify themselves through the heat of the three suns shining on the Crystal. Instead of being cleansed of their darker natures, each urSkek was split into two beings; Skeksis and urRu. The urRu were the embodiements of the peaceful, contemplative side of the urSkek's nature. Their name meant "old and wise ones".[1]

Despite the separation, there was still a spiritual link between each Skeksis and urRu counterpart, a constant reminder that they were only halves of the same being. If either was wounded, the other felt the pain and suffered an identical injury. If one died, both died.[2]


Biology and appearanceEdit


The urRu, as they appeared shortly after the Great Division.

Their faces were thrust forward on long, heavily maned necks, and were deeply wrinkled with runic patterns which represented each urRu's lines of thought. They walked with a swaying motion, and had long tails which were insufficient to counterbalance the weight of their heads. [1] When they first appeared, the urRu were lean and fairly agile creatures,[3] though by the time of Jen's quest, they relied on walking sticks to move properly, which they held with their forearms, while their hind arms hung to the ground.[1] The corona that once flowed through the urSkeks was still present in the urRu, though in a much reduced state.[2]


Their garments resembled a cross between a coat and a saddle blanket.[1] These cloaks, which were modeled after the Tree of Life,[2] were fashioned by a system of knotting threads, which formed patterns representing the wearer's thoughts.[1]

Although intelligent, the knowledge of the urRu was entirely conceptual, having no drive to learn through practice or example. This was in contrast with the Skeksis, who were an innovative and vibrant race, responsible for numerous innovations. Their collective guilt over the Great Division was such that they were unable to perform spontaneous actions, and would spend days trying to discover all permutations that could result from literally binding everyday objects together with string.[1] Cutting objects with scissors went contrary to all urRu beliefs, thus objects such as string were separated through chewing.[2]

Their nature was such that they were completely incapable of violence. Two urRu were killed without resistance by the Skeksis shortly after the Great Division,[3] and Jen noted that the urRu never beat him, no matter how badly he behaved.[1]


The Great DivisionEdit


The urSkeks are split into Skeksis and urRu.

After nine hundred and ninety-nine and one trine passed since their arrival on Thra, the Fallen urSkeks created a network of mirrors around the Great Crystal with Aughra's help, intending to trap the light of the next Great Conjunction to re-enter their world and burn out the imperfections in their souls in the process.[2] In preparation for this, the urSkeks invited delegations representing all of Thra's sentient races to watch the occasion. However, one urSkek became wracked by nostalgia after hearing a member of the Gelfling delegation play an urSkek song, and allowed its darker nature to overwhelm it. When the Three Suns met, the dark hearted urSkek's rage prevented the rest of the urSkeks from entering the Crystal and being cleansed. Instead of being purified, the urSkeks were divided into two separate races; the Skeksis and urRu.[3]

Shortly after gaining consciousness in the Crystal Chamber, one of the Skeksis attacked and killed two urRu, thus resulting in the deaths of itself and another Skeksis. The remaining 16 urRu were driven out of the castle, closely followed by an earthquake caused by the cracking of the Crystal. The urRu managed to halt the earthquake's progress through song, though not in time to save the Podling village of Noy.[3]

The Garthim Wars and Jen's questEdit

The Skeksis largely left the urRu to their own devices,[2] though they feared that the urRu would reveal the Skeksis' true nature to the Gelflings. In order to counter this, skekSil the Chamberlain spread rumours among the Gelfling clans that the urRu were cruel wizards who devoured the souls of Gelfling children. He even proposed capturing and imprisoning them in the Castle in order to stop them influencing the Gelflings.[4] The urRu took no active part in the Garthim Wars 800 trine after the Great Division, though a few urRu, notably urSen the Monk, guided the Gelfling Larh during his times of self-doubt.[5][6] Aware of the prophecy that foretold of the reversal of the Great Division, urSu the Master adopted the Gelfling Jen and prepared him as he grew for his role in finding the Shard of the Division and healing the Dark Crystal. However, they never told Jen of the Great Division, nor what the purpose of finding the Shard was. As the third Great Conjunction approached only 10 of the original 18 urRu were left. As 10 was the number of stability, urSu allowed himself to die in order that the coinciding death of skekSo the Emperor would plunge the remaining nine Skeksis into disarray. Before dying, urSu sent Jen to find the shard and heal the Dark Crystal. After Jen managed to identify the true shard, and escaped from the Garthim, urZah the Ritual Guardian lead the urRu towards the Castle, during which time both urTih the Alchemist and skekTek the Scientist died. When Jen healed the Crystal, the urRu marched into the Castle and merged with the Skeksis.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 Smith, A. C. H., & Odell, D. (1982). The Dark Crystal. Holt, Rinehart and Winston . ISBN 0030624363
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Froud, B. & Llewellyn, J. J., (2003) The World of the Dark Crystal. Pavilion Books. ISBN 1-86205-624-2
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Froud, B., Dysart, J., Sheikman, A. & John, L. (2012). The Dark Crystal: Creation Myths, Vol. II. Archaia. ISBN 978-1-936393-80-0
  4. The Dark Crystal Author Quest: The Gelfling Gathering, The Jim Henson Company (2013)
  5. Kessel, B. R. & Arnhold, H. (2007) Legends of the Dark Crystal Volume 1: The Garthim Wars. TokyoPop. ISBN 1598167014
  6. Kessel, B. R. & Arnhold, H. (2010) Legends of the Dark Crystal Volume 2: Trial by Fire. TokyoPop. ISBN 1598167022

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