Beyond the Black River

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“Barbarism is the natural state of mankind,” the borderer said, still staring somberly at the Cimmerian. “Civilization is unnatural. It is a whim of circumstance. And barbarism must always ultimately triumph.”


"Beyond the Black River" is a Conan the Barbarian story by Robert E. Howard. Published in 2 parts, from May to June, 1935.

Balthus is a man living in a frontier fort while the Picts are restless. He is captured in the forest and intended for sacrifice while Conan rescues him. They return with the news, and Conan giving Balthus many long lectures on things.

Tropes used in Beyond the Black River include: