Doctor Who and the Masque of Mandragora was a novelisation based on the 1976 television serial The Masque of Mandragora.

Publisher's summary Edit

1977 Target edition Edit

Forced off course by the Mandragora Helix, the Tardis lands in the province of San Martino in fifteenth-century Italy. Here, the court astrologer, Hieronymous, has been taken over by the Mandragora energy-form – Hieronymous and the other members of his star-worshiping black magic cult will be used as a bridgehead, enabling the Mandragora Helix to conquer the Earth and rule it through their chosen servants.

The Doctor has to defeat not only the Mandragora energy, but the evil schemes of the murderous Count Frederico who plans to usurp the place of his nephew, the rightful ruler of the province.

1979 Pinnacle edition Edit


It is the Italian Renaissance during the corrupt reign of the powerful Medicis. Doctor Who, angry because he was forced to land on Earth by the incredible Mandragora Helix, walks right into a Machiavellian plot. The unscrupulous Count Frederico plans to usurp the rightful rule of his naive nephew. This, with the help of Hieronymous, influential court astrologer and secret cult member.

Intent on righting all wrongs, Doctor Who studies their political manoeuvres. He uncovers a larger, even more malevalent plot - a plot to rule not only San Martino Province, but the entire world! Hieronymous has been taken over - both in mind and body - by the Mandragora energy ball, an alien, but all-powerful intelligence. Using Hieronymous and his cult members as a bridgehead, the Mandragora Helix intends to conquer Earth and dominate its people!

The question is, will Doctor Who provide a true Renaissance man? Will he be able to drain the Mandragora of its power and foil the Count as well?

Doctor Who is a mysterious, zany, and very mature Time Lord (750 years mature to be exact) who hurries through time in a stolen Time Machine. Since three's a problem with the steering, he never lands exactly when or where he plans to. This, along with his desperate desire to bring law and order to the galaxy, and his insatiable curiosity, consistently places him in weird and often wild circumstances.

The Incredible Space Fantasy Now a Hit Television Series

Chapter titles Edit

  1. The Mandragora Helix
  2. The Brethren of Demnos
  3. Execution!
  4. Sacrifice
  5. The Prince Must Die
  6. The Secret of the Temple
  7. The Spell of Evil
  8. Torture!
  9. The Invasion Begins
  10. Siege
  11. Duel to the Death
  12. The Final Eclipse

Deviations from televised story Edit

  • The Doctor humiliates Hieronymous and Frederico when he spots them trying to give rat poison to Guiliano.
  • An extended end scene features Guiliano trying to explain how the TARDIS disappeared.

Writing and publishing notes Edit

  • This is the only novelisation to depict the secondary control room; the others depict it as the normal console room.
  • This novelisation was later released as part of The History Collection.

Additional cover images Edit

British publication history Edit

First publication:

  • Hardback
W.H. Allen & Co. Ltd. UK
  • Paperback

Editions published outside Britain Edit

  • Pinnacle Books, 1979. Includes the essay "Introducing Doctor Who" by Harlan Ellison, and an unusual addendum to the back cover blurb that suggests that the TV series is brand new.
  • Published in France in July 1987 as Docteur Who Le Masque de Mandragore. Translated by Richard D. Nolane, adapted Corine Derblum and illustrated by Jean-François Pénichoux.

 Audiobook Edit

This Target Book was released on 16 April 2009 complete and unabridged by BBC Audio and read by Tim Piggott-Smith.

The cover blurb and thumbnail illustrations were retained in the accompanying booklet with sleevenotes by David J. Howe. Music and sound effects by Simon Power.

External links Edit

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