His Dark Materials
His Dark Materials

Lady Salmakia was a Gallivespian spy. She and her partner, Chevalier Tialys, worked for Lord Asriel under Lord Roke, Lord Asriel's Gallivespian spymaster. Salmakia flew on an electric blue dragonfly that emitted a small amount of light. She accompanied Lyra Silvertongue and Will Parry on their journey to the world of the dead.


Working for Lord Asriel[]

Salmakia, Tialys and several other Gallivespians, under the command of Roke, were outlaws in their world. Roke, who had heard of Asriel's revolt against the Authority, went to him and pledged their support.[2]

At some point, Salmakia was sent to spy at the Society of the Work of the Holy Spirit. Salmakia had once watched a priest perform a forbidden ritual which would invoke the precense of Wisdom. At a crucial moment, she appeared and the priest thought he could talk with Wisdom and would confide in ehr what was happening.[3] Shee and Tialys, who spied at the Consistorial Court of Discipline, would meet up at one of at least seven appointed meeting points every so often to exchange news.[1]

Rescuing Lyra[]

At one of their meeting, Tialys told Salmakia that, under the orders of Lord Roke, they should sneak onto the Magisterium's zeppelin and go towards the cave where Lyra was being kept by Marisa Coulter where they should guard her.[4]

After sneaking on board, the two got their dragonfly eggs ready to try and make them hatch in time for when they reached the Himalaya. Just before Tialys's egg was hatching, he received another message telling him to go and find the boy, Will, and to follow him as he had the subtle knife which Asriel needed to win his war.[5]

The two flew to the cave where they found Will and a girl, Ama, rescuing Lyra. When they got there, Salmakia stung Marisa with her spur before being caught be Marisa's dæmon. In order to prevent the monkey from killing Salmakia, Tialys stood on her shoulder with his spur on her neck. If he plunged it in, Marisa would die - Will was left to decide what happened.[6]

After Will freed Salmakia, Tialys ordered Will to go through into another world to escape. After sending Ama back to the village she came from, they went towards the window that Will had cut earlier into another world. After stabbing two members of the Swiss Guard that came to attack them, they disappeared.

They moved into the other world and, after discussing with Lyra, Will called the two spies over. Tialys introduced themselves and told them how they had come to be in the service of Asriel. They told the children that they had come to take Will and Lyra to Asriel. After hearing this, Lyra laughed out loud, thinking about the tiny people commanding them to do anything. Salmakia seized Lyra's dæmon, Pantalaimon, however Tialys was grabbed by the legs by Will.

Salmakia let go of Pan and Tialys was put down before Lyra apologised. After this, they treated each other with a bit more respect. With his knife, Will was able to make the Gallivespians do what he said. Will then told the Gallivespians their plans to go to Iorek Byrnison, the armoured bear.[2]

Iorek Byrnison[]

After sleeping, the four moved on towards Iorek. After a day's walk, they reached him and headed up to a cave. Tialys and Salmakia flew away and hid on a ledge in shadow, overhearing what was going on below. They heard Will tell Iorek that his knife was broken and realised that they'd been lied to. However, Will knew they were hiding and told them to come out because it was disrespectful.

Unwillingly, the two came out from the shadows, greeted by a growl from the bear. Tialys told Will he had deceived them and that that was dishonourable but Will replied saying that, if they had known the knife was broken, they would have made Will go to Asriel immediately. Will made Tialys and Salmakia apologise to the bear king for spying on him and Iorek, forgiving them, invited them down to the fire he had made and promised them food.[7]

Iorek, who had agreed to mend the knife, sat with the spies whilst Lyra and Will went to fetch some wood. The two went up onto the ledge whilst the knife was being mended. Once it was whole again, Will cut into another world. The Gallivespians were angry as they had called same gyropters to come and get them, but knew that they couldn't defy them and had to go with the children.[8]

World of the dead[]

Suburbs of the land of the dead[]

After sleeping and keeping watch, the Gallivespians watched over the children, making sure they weren't going to escape. Not too long later, they decided that Tialys would give the children his lodestone resonator, used to communicate with Roke, (only being able to use it if the children let him) in exchange for knowledge as to where they were going.

The children agreed and told the Gallivespians, shocking them, that they were going to the world of the dead. After first not believing that it existed, they followed the children towards a village. Here they found a farmhouse with a dead man, Dirk Jansen, outside who had had his throat slit. They heard some soldiers coming and so Will cut a window, opening into the world of the dead.

After struggling through, they followed the ghosts towards where they were going: the suburbs of the land of the dead.[9] The group were told to go to the holding area as they were still alive. After seeking refuge with a family, consisting of Peter and Martha, their children and Magda, there and exchanging stories, Lyra was told she needed to speak to her death to get over to the main land of the dead.[10]

Land of the dead[]

The boatman's jetty

The group went with the boatman, after being led to him by Lyra's death, over to the land of the dead. Not very long into the journey, Salmakia felt a wrench in her heart as her soul was pulled out. This was a great pain and made her a lot weaker. When they arrived, they found a harpy, No-Name, who talked to them, mocking them for being alive. Lyra told her a tale of lies about how they got there and the harpy, enraged, flew at them.

Tialys and Salmakia, ready to attack, jabbed their spurs into the harpy, however, were unable to harm her. After managing to get through, they talked to the ghosts inside.[11] The two Gallivespians flew around the children, keeping the ghosts away, whilst Lyra talked to them, asking them to try and find her friend, Roger Parslow.

The Gallivespians flew ahead as the children walked, scanning everywhere for Roger. When they found him, they flew down and told him Lyra was coming.[12]

Whilst Lyra was telling the ghosts about the world above, the harpies came and listened silently. Once Lyra had finished, she talked to the harpies who told the ghosts about the children's plans to lead them out of the world.

Tialys then made an offer, in order to stop the harpies making the ghosts' time in the land of the dead hell, saying that, if the harpies took the ghosts to the window, the ghosts had to tell them stories about their life. Salmakia told them it was their duty to take the ghosts to the window and that they could refuse to do so if the ghosts didn't have any memories. After they agreed, they set off towards a point where Will could cut to the world above.[13]


Lyra falling down the Abyss

The four set off into a cave system. During this time, Tialys's dragonfly died and Salmakia's was dying. Salmakia would try and keep it alive by feeding it her blood as it emitted light, however, it soon died. They continued upwards until they had to stop. A bomb was going to go off, organised by the Magisterium, which would destroy Lyra. After cutting off a part of Lyra's hair and putting it into another world, an explosion went off, creating the Abyss which they nearly fell into.

After walking further along, Lyra's foot slipped and she found herself travelling down the slope. The harpy saved her and, after a short stop, they continued further on a lot slower. When they reached the point where they could cut into the upper world, Will opened a window into the mulefa world. The ghosts went through and were free.[14]

After a night's sleep in the world, they entered the world of the dead again and went further along to where Will could cut into the Republic of Heaven where Asriel's basalt fortress was. Whilst they were walking, the Gallivespians felt a stiffness in their limbs and a coldness in their hearts and knew that they were going to die soon.[15]

Republic of Heaven[]

After cutting into the Republic of Heaven, the group, along with a few other ghosts who wanted to fight, went into the world. The Gallivespians followed them as the children searched for their dæmon, calling out to them to look out for various things.[15]

Soon, they came among a crystal chariot surrounded by cliff-ghasts that were banging on it, trying to get in. Inside, there was an angel: the Authority. Will used his knife to swipe at some of them and Tialys jumped off his shoulder and plunged his spur in the neck of the largest. The creature howled and thrashed and fell into the mud. Tialys died with his spurs in her neck possibly from all the energy he used killing her. Will picked up Tialys and carried him with them. Having to continue going, Lady told Lyra to let Madame Oxentiel come and land on her fist as she had taken over as spymaster after Roke died.

The lady lay and died in Lyra's arms.[16] After escaping into the mulefa world, the children buried her, along with Tialys. Their grave was no more than a couple of hand-breadths wide. Will cut their names into a piece of rock which served as the headstone.[17]

Physical description[]

Salmakia wore a silver skirt and a green, sleevless top. Like all in this species, Salmakia was about a hand's height tall.


Like most of the Gallivespians, Salmakia was proud. When Lyra laughed, thinking about how the two Gallivespians could make them do anything, the lady sprang onto Pantalaimon, offended.

Abilities and skills[]

  • Lodestone resonator reader: It is possible that Salmakia could read and use the lodestone resonator but probably wasn't as good as Tialys as he would do all the messages.
  • Spy: Salmakia, due to her height, was a very good spy.

Behind the scenes[]


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HDM Wiki has 1 image of Lady Salmakia.


  1. 1.0 1.1 The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 6
  2. 2.0 2.1 The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 13
  3. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 5
  4. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 9
  5. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 11
  6. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 12
  7. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 14
  8. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 15
  9. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 18
  10. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 19
  11. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 21
  12. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 22
  13. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 23
  14. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 26
  15. 15.0 15.1 The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 29
  16. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 31
  17. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 32
  18. Twitter