Iram of the Pillars

An area of Iram of the Pillars.

Iram of the Pillars, also called Iram, Ubar and the City of Brass and known by its nickname the "Atlantis of the Sands", is a lost city said to be in the Rub' al Khali desert on the Arabian Peninsula.

Iram proves to be the primary plot device in the 2011 Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception. Treasure-hunter Nathan "Nate" Drake wishes to find the lost city in order to complete the journey of his supposed ancestor, legendary explorer Sir Francis Drake. Nate is opposed by Katherine Marlowe, the head of a secret society dating back 400 years to the days of Drake and Queen Elizabeth I; Marlowe wishes to reveal Drake's secret: that he never reached Iram and lied about it to Elizabeth.


[edit] Background

Iram of the Pillars is a lost city said to be in the Rub' al Khali desert on the Arabian Peninsula. The story surrounding Iram is that it was a city rich beyond its years, due in part to its trading of costly perfumes that were used in sacred rituals.[1]

The citizens of Iram led a sinful life, and as a punishment Allah caused a drought that harmed the city greatly, before sending a sandstorm that engulfed the city, making it sink beneath the sand of the Rub' al Khali. Iram is mentioned in the Quran, the religious text of Islam; it is used as a warning, lest the same fate that fell upon Iram would fall upon similarly-sinful cities.[1]

Legendary English explorer Sir Francis Drake was once sent on a quest to find Iram by Queen Elizabeth I and her close advisers John Dee and Francis Walsingham. Drake followed the trail of Iram to Yemen before discovering the danger that would befall anyone who entered the city; Drake returned home, lying to Elizabeth and telling her that he was unable to find Iram.[2]

[edit] Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception

At a camp in the Rub' al Khali desert, Salim, the Sheikh of a local tribe of Bedouin riders, tells treasure-hunter Nathan "Nate" Drake an alternative story of Iram: 3000 years ago, King Solomon commanded the demons known as the "Djinn" until they rebelled against him; at which point, Solomon imprisoned them in a brass vessel and cast them into the depths of Iram. Iram then became a place of evil; cursed by the spirits of the Djinn. Nate later discovers that the vessel was cast into the city's water supply by Solomon, thus poisoning anyone who drunk from the city's spring and tormenting them with hallucinations. Everyone in the city died as they were overcome by madness, although the city remained standing.[2]

Iram sinks into the desert.

In Iram, Nate hallucinates after drinking from a water fountain, before he and antique-dealer Victor "Sully" Sullivan confront Katherine Marlowe, the head of a secret society dating back 400 years to the days of Francis Drake and Elizabeth. Along with her right-hand man Talbot and her agents, Marlowe is trying to remove the vessel containing the Djinn. Nate is able to destroy the crane that Marlowe is using to retrieve the vessel using a flare gun, although the gun also causes damage to the city's infrastructure. A hole in the ground is formed, and as sand flows into the hole it drags Iram in. Marlowe is sucked into the hole, despite Nate attempting to help her, before Nate and Talbot engage in a battle with the city crumbling around them. Nate wins the battle, and although it seems that he and Sully will be unable to escape, Salim rides in on horseback to save them, before Nate, Sully and Salim watch from a nearby sand dune as the last of Iram sinks into the desert and is lost forever.[2]

[edit] Appearances

[edit] Behind the scenes

The City of Brass map in Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception multiplayer depicts as Iram of the Pillars as it appears in the campaign of the game.

[edit] See also

[edit] References

  1. 1.0 1.1 "Lost City of Iram" on Unsolved Mysteries in the World (blog)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Hennig, Amy (dir.), Naughty Dog (2011). Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception. Sony Computer Entertainment.
Last edited by In Motion on 18 January 2012 at 08:11
This page has been accessed 4,837 times.