The X of Y

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An extremely popular title convention in almost every media and most genres. This is one of the oldest known naming formulas; it is already an established formula in One Thousand and One Nights, with internal stories are named things like "The Tale of the Bull and the Ass" and "The City of Brass".

Some of the most common variant formulas are:

  • The (Common Noun) of (Proper Noun) (e.g. The Sword of Shannara, The Riddlemaster of Hed, The Tale of Genji, The Chronicles of Amber);
  • The (Common Noun) of (Common Noun) (e.g. The Valley of Fear, The Ambassadors of Fear, Attack of the Clones);
  • The (Proper Noun) of (Placename) (e.g. Elric of Melnibone, The Phantom of the Opera).

The presence or absence of articles ("the", "a", and "an") and their placement create even more variants, as do the optional use of adjectives before either the "X" or the "Y".

A sub-convention is Character Name and the Noun Phrase. Please put examples that fall into that convention on that page, not here. For the related form "The Adjective Noun" see Mad Lib Thriller Title. See also Genre Title Grab Bag. Title of the Dead and Age of Titles are sub-tropes. Usually overlaps with Revenge of the Sequel.

Examples of The X of Y include:

Anime and Manga

Comic Books



  • The Lord of the Rings
    • The Fellowship of the Ring
    • The Return of the King
  • A Song of Ice and Fire uses the trope with less flair:
    • A Game of Thrones
    • A Clash of Kings
    • A Storm of Swords
    • A Feast for Crows
    • A Dance with Dragons
    • The Winds of Winter
    • A Dream of Spring
  • The Chronicles of Narnia
  • The Sword of Truth series of books had titles like these for several installments:
    • Stone of Tears
    • Blood of the Fold
    • Temple of the Winds
    • Soul of the Fire
    • Faith of the Fallen
  • Shannara uses this constantly, although recently it's been just the titles of the trilogy instead of the book titles.
    • The Sword of Shannara
    • The Elfstones of Shannara
    • The Wishsong of Shannara
    • etc.
  • The Wheel of Time, and several of its component books:
    • The Eye of the World
    • The Fires of Heaven
    • Lord of Chaos
    • A Crown of Swords
    • The Path of Daggers
    • Crossroads of Twilight
    • Knife of Dreams
    • And A Memory of Light, though that will apparently be split into multiple books
  • Starfighters of Adumar
  • Every one of the novels in the Chronicles of Amber series except for the first one follows the pattern "Noun of Noun", sometimes with "the" attached to one or the other of the nouns.
  • Sherlock Holmes has a lot.
    • The Sign of Four
    • The Valley of Fear
    • The Hound of the Baskervilles
    • Most of the short stories are titled The Adventure of (Whatever).
    • Most of the books containing the short stories are titled "The (Whatever) of Sherlock Holmes".
  • The Call of the Wild
  • The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, and most of its sequels.
    • The Marvelous Land of Oz
    • The Emerald City of Oz
    • The Patchwork Girl of Oz
    • The Scarecrow of Oz
    • The Lost Princess of Oz
    • The Tin Woodman of Oz
    • The Magic of Oz
  • The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus
  • The Chronicles of Prydain
    • The Book of Three
    • The Castle of Llyr
  • The Witches of Worm
  • The Tenant of Wildfell Hall
  • Harry Potter has this in books 2 - 5.
    • Chamber of Secrets
    • Prisoner of Azkaban
    • Goblet of Fire
    • Order of the Phoenix
  • Werewolf of Paris
  • The Haunting of Hill House
  • The Phantom of the Opera
  • The Count of Monte Cristo
  • The Eye of Argon
  • Canadian author L. M. Montgomery was fond of using this trope in her books:
  • Most of the Belgariad/Malloreon books.
    • Pawn of Prophecy
    • Queen of Sorcery
    • Castle of Wizardry
    • Guardians of the West
    • King of the Murgos
    • Demon Lord of Karanda
    • Sorceress of Darshiva
    • The Seeress of Kell
  • The Thousand Autumns of Jacob De Zoet
  • Five of the six books in the Earth's Children series:
    • The Clan of the Cave Bear
    • The Valley of Horses
    • The Plains of Passage
    • The Shelters of Stone
    • The Land of Painted Caves
  • Each of the Gor novels are titled X of Gor
  • Most of the books of The Roman Mysteries
    • The Thieves of Ostia
    • The Secrets of Vesuvius
    • The Pirates of Pompeii
    • The Assassins of Rome
    • The Dolphins of Laurentum
    • The Twelve Tasks of Flavia Gemina
    • The Enemies of Jupiter
    • The Colossus of Rhodes
    • The Sirens of Surrentum
    • The Charioteer of Delphi
    • The Beggar of Volubilis
  • The Books of Ember series:
    • The City of Ember
    • The People of Sparks
    • The Prophet of Yonwood
    • The Diamond of Darkhold
  • Some of the Warrior Cats series:
    • Secrets of the Clans
    • Cats of the Clans
    • Code of the Clans
    • Battles of the Clans
    • Forest of Secrets
    • Sign of the Moon
    • The Rise of Scourge
    • The Heart of a Warrior
  • The Buddha of Suburbia
  • "The Black Sheep of Vaerlosi", a 2009 short story by Desmond Warzel.
  • The Crying of Lot 49 by Thomas Pynchon

Live-Action TV


Tabletop Games


  • The Lone Wolf series is rife with this:
    • The Caverns of Kalte
    • The Chasm of Doom
    • The Kingdom of Terror
    • The Jungle of Horrors
    • The Cauldron of Fear
    • The Dungeons of Torgar
    • The Prisoners of Time
    • The Masters of Darkness
    • The Plague Lords of Ruel
    • The Captives of Kaag
    • The Legacy of Vashna
    • The Deathlord of Ixia
    • Dawn of the Dragons
    • The Curse of Naar
    • The Buccaneers of Shadaki
    • The Fall of Blood Mountain
    • The Hunger of Sejanoz
    • The Storms of Chai
  • Fighting Fantasy also uses it extensively:
    • The Warlock of Firetop Mountain
    • The Citadel of Chaos
    • The Forest Of Doom
    • City of Thieves
    • Island of the Lizard King
    • Caverns of the Snow Witch
    • House of Hell
    • Talisman of Death
    • Temple of Terror
    • The Rings of Kether
    • Seas of Bood
    • Demons of the Deep
    • Sword of the Samurai
    • Trial of Champions
    • Masks of Mayhem
    • Creature of Havoc
    • Crypt of the Sorceror
    • Phantoms of Fear
    • Chasms of Malice
    • Slaves of the Abyss
    • Stealer of Souls
    • Daggers of Darkness
    • Armies of Death
    • Portal of Evil
    • Vault of the Vampire
    • Fangs of Fury
    • Dead of Night
    • Master of Chaos
    • The Keep of the Lich-Lord
    • Legend of the Shadow Warriors
    • Tower of Desruction
    • Siege of Sardath
    • Island of the Undead
    • Legend of Zagor
    • Knights Of Doom
    • Revenge of the Vampire
    • Curse of the Mummy
    • Howl of the Werewolf
    • Kharé -- Cityport of Traps
    • The Crown of Kings


Video Games

Web Comics

  • Gunnerkrigg Court:
    • Chapter 6: A Handful of Dirt
    • Chapter 14: The Fangs of Summertime
    • Chapter 23: Terror Castle of the Jupiter Moon Martians
  • Schlock Mercenary: Ob'Enn ship names. All of them. And they're all incredibly pretentious.
  • Order of the Stick
    • Its prequels On the Origins of PCs and Start of Darkness count too.
  • Order of Tales
  • The Way of the Metagamer
  • Homestuck acts "Raise of the Conductor's Baton" and "Flight of the Paradox Clones".
    • All of the Hero Names in Sburb are monosyllabic versions of this trope: The Heir of Breath, the Knight of Blood...

Web Original

Western Animation

Real Life

  • The Summer of Love, and various sequels.
  • The Wars of the Roses
  • The War of 1812