His Dark Materials
His Dark Materials

Lord Roke was a Gallivespian spy who worked for Lord Asriel. He was the spy-captain and was a member of Asriel's commanding council. He would keep in touch with his fellow Gallivespians on their various missions. He flew on a blue hawk.[2]


Working for Lord Asriel[]

At some point in his life, Roke joined Asriel's side of the war against the Authority. Roke and a team of other Gallivespians were outlaws from possibly their species or their world until Roke heard of Asriel's revolt and pledged the support of the group.[3]

Roke became the spy-captain for Asriel and, despite his size, was respected by the rest of Asriel's captains. Roke worked to help his fellow Gallivespian spies get into the best places to receive information about what was going on. Communicating via the lodestone resonator, Roke was able to talk with his spies whever they were.[2]

Rescuing Lyra[]

After Lyra Silvertongue was taken to a cave in the Valley of the Rainbows by Marisa Coulter, Roke ordered two of his spies, the Chevalier Tialys and the Lady Salmakia, to leave their positions inside the Magisterium and get on the zeppelins which were going to fly towards and Lyra and try to kill her.

Roke himself boarded King Ogunwe's fleet, also flying towards the child, to try and rescue her. Later, Roke told the two spies that they should assist the boy, Will Parry, who was going to rescue Lyra and follow him wherever he went.[4]

Meeting Marisa Coulter[]

After returning to the basalt fortress as his spies had successfully followed the two children, Roke kept in touch with them to see where they were going. Through it, he ordered some transport to pick them up and take them back to the fortress, however, the two children refused to co-operate and so the transport was called off.

When at a meeting with Asriel, Ogunwe and the angel Xaphania, Roke saw Marisa Coulter was sitting in the chair as a prisoner. They began, after talking about plans, discussing what they should do with Marisa. After making a speech about how much she loved her daughter, Roke decided it would be best for her to stay with them, although he sensed Marisa was like a scorpion and that she was best kept where they could see her.[5]

Intention craft[]

After Asriel showed Marisa around the fortress, he deliberately took the group to the space where he kept the intention craft to demonstrate its use. As he showed her the controls, Marisa pushed Asriel out of the machine and escaped his fortress in it. However, this was not before Asriel had sent Roke to join her, unseen, intending to have Marisa lead them to Lyra.[5]

Roke followed Marisa into the College of St Jerome and snuck into her bedroom. Before she got dressed, Roke talked to her briefly and kept watch for the night. When Brother Louis came in and took the gold locket from Marisa's neck, Roke followed him out and into the room where Hugh MacPhail was talking. Roke overheard the plans for them to destroy Lyra by using the lock of hair inside the gold locket.[6]

College of St Jerome[]

Roke saw the President of the Consistorial Court of Discipline give the lock of hair to Dr Cooper and followed Cooper out of the room before attacking him. Roke returned the recovered hair to Marisa and, after Brother Louis left the room after returning the locket, told her what had happened. After the shock of learning that some of the hair was missing, Roke had to quickly hide as MacPhail had entered the room and was questioning Marisa about how she had attacked Dr Cooper.[6]

Roke later burnt the hair and let the wind spread the ashes, before descending to the laboratory of the college and watching the remaining piece of hair being put into the bomb. He memorised where it was and how to get to it, but was unable to reach it past the many technicians.[1]


The following day, Marisa was taken by zeppelin to Saint-Jean-les-Eaux where they planned to separate her from her dæmon in order to power the bomb. Roke took refuge on the zeppelin, listening to the conversations between the crew and sometimes going back to Marisa to report what was going on. When it was time to get off, Roke hid in Marisa's coat but snuck out and went over to a nearby sergeant who held the keys to the handcuffs which Marisa needed to remove.

Roke went over to him and used one of his spurs to make the man fall before grabbing the key and jabbing his spur into a nearby soldier who had gone to the man's aid. Roke watched Marisa get out of the handcuffs and stayed where he was to keep watch whilst Marisa went to deactivate the bomb.

Soon, he came to Marisa's aid and jabbed his spur into yet another soldier who then, in pain, stamped on the Gallivespian's leg, breaking it. Roke lay still on the moss whilst he heard Hugh and a witch talk about him and wanting to find him. The golden monkey set about going towards him and picked him up, taking him back to Marisa. Before they reached each other, an arrow from the witch nearly hit Marisa and so the golden monkey dropped Roke and jumped to her defence.

Marisa and the witch grappled before the witch's seagull-dæmon swooped down and scooped Roke up in his mouth. Roke fought hard, but to no avail, and was taken up into the air, followed by the witch on her cloud-pine. As his last act, Roke managed to thrust his spur into the witch's neck, causing her to fall to the floor. The witch, in deep pain, managed to survive the fall but Roke, however, didn't.[1] Roke was succeeded by Madame Oxentiel who was his second-in-command.[7]

Abilities and skills[]

  • Lodestone resonator reader: The lodestone resonator was a complicated instrument to use and read which Lyra compared to her alethiometer. It required a large amount of concentration and thought.

Behind the scenes[]



  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 25
  2. 2.0 2.1 The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 5
  3. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 13
  4. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 11
  5. 5.0 5.1 The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 16
  6. 6.0 6.1 The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 24
  7. The Amber Spyglass, Chapter 28
  8. Twitter