His Dark Materials
His Dark Materials

Lord Carlo Boreal, known as Sir Charles Latrom in Will's world, was involved with the General Oblation Board. His dæmon was a serpent called Grizel.[1]


Carlo Boreal attended Marisa Coulter's cocktail party. He spoke to Lyra Belacqua about the General Oblation Board and Dust.[2]

Later at the Pitt-Rivers Museum in Will's world, he again met Lyra, who was acting under the false name Lizzie and did not recognise him. He spoke to her about the trepanned skulls and gave her a card, telling her that she could contact him if she wanted to know more.[3]

The next day, when Lyra was being chased by the men who were looking for Elaine Parry's writing case, Boreal offered her a lift in his Rolls-Royce. He took her to Summertown and deftly stole her alethiometer without her noticing. Once she realised, Lyra and William Parry went to Boreal's house to ask for it back. Boreal told them he would return it in exchange for the subtle knife.[4]

That evening, Boreal invited Marisa Coulter to Limefield House. They drank Tokay and discussed the different worlds, Lord Asriel's plans and Lyra. Will stole the alethiometer while Lyra provided a distraction and both managed to escape.[5] Both Boreal and Coulter were unaware of who stole the alethiometer.[6]

Boreal's snake-dæmon

Lord Boreal talking to Hugh MacPhail

The next day, Boreal visited the Dark Matter Research Unit under his pseudonym of Charles Latrom. He offered to fund the research of Oliver Payne and Mary Malone if they would be willing to focus their research on the manipulation of consciousness. Although Malone was reluctant to work with Latrom, Payne called him immediately after she left the laboratory.[7]

Some time later, in the world of Cittàgazze, Boreal was seduced by Marisa Coulter into telling her everything he knew about the subtle knife. Coulter poisoned his glass of wine and Boreal died as a result.[8]



In Will's world, Boreal had a servant named Allan who acted as a doorman and a chauffeur. Boreal spoke openly about the subtle knife and the world of Cittàgazze in front of Allan, suggesting that the master trusted his servant greatly.[9]

Marisa Coulter[]

Carlo and Marisa were closely acquainted, both having numerous, powerful contacts. Lord Asriel knew that they were, in fact, both lovers, but he told Marisa, before going into the world of Cittàgazze, that he didn't care that she had loved Carlo.[10] Later, Marisa ended up poisoning him, showing that their relationship never got far.

Behind the scenes[]

  • In the TV series, Boreal is played by Ariyon Bakare.[11]
  • Despite the name not appearing in the books, Philip Pullman gave the name 'Grizel' to Jack Thorne for the TV series (although this never appeared).[1]
  • Sir Charles Latrom drives a Rolls Royce in the books however in the TV series he drives a Tesla.
  • Latrom, Lord Boreal’s pseudonym in Will’s world, spells “mortal” in reverse.


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HDM Wiki has 15 images of Carlo Boreal.