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Gallifrey was the homeworld of the Time Lords. (TV: The Time Warrior) By one account, the planet was actually called Jewel, (COMIC: Return of the Daleks) and during several time wars, it was functionally referred to as the Homeworld. (PROSE: Damaged Goods, The Book of the War, etc.) The literal translation of the name "Gallifrey" was "They that walk in the shadows". (PROSE: The Pit)

Gallifrey and all its cloneworlds were destroyed in the War in Heaven. (PROSE: The Ancestor Cell, The Adventuress of Henrietta Street) A group of Oldblood Great Houses created many "lesser Homeworlds" which fought simplified models of the War in bottle universes and oxbow realities. (PROSE: A Prelude to a Prelude)

Conflicting accounts on its fate in the Last Great Time War existed. By one account, it was destroyed when the Eighth Doctor used the Moment to engulf it and seal the event inside a time lock. (PROSE: Doctor Who and the Time War) However, according to most accounts, it was only believed to have been destroyed in the Last Great Time War (TV: The End of the World) but was actually frozen in a pocket universe by the first thirteen incarnations of the Doctor (TV: The Day of the Doctor, The Time of the Doctor, etc.) and later discovered at the end of the universe. (TV: Hell Bent) By this point in their history, the Time Lords were wary of being discovered alive, although they still continued their mission to ensure nothing threatened the Laws of Time. (PROSE: Lords and Masters)

The Master was later revealed to have been responsible for leaving Gallifrey in ruins after finding out the truth about the Timeless Child. (TV: Spyfall) After the Master used the corpses of the Time Lords he'd killed to create a new race of CyberMasters, Ko Sharmus detonated the death particle to stop him, wiping out all organic life on Gallifrey. (TV: The Timeless Children, Revolution of the Daleks)

Location[edit | edit source]

Gallifrey was located in the constellation of Kasterborous at galactic coordinates 10-0-11-0-0/0-2 from Galactic Zero Centre. (TV: Pyramids of Mars, Full Circle, Death in Heaven) Several accounts placed it more or less at the centre of its galaxy. (PROSE: The Devil Goblins from Neptune, Interference - Book Two, Human Nature) Indeed, I.M. Foreman once specified to the Eighth Doctor that it wasn't in "the exact dead centre, but it's as close as you can get without ending up in a black hole". (PROSE: Interference - Book One) According to another account, the Eighth Doctor explained to humans Grace Holloway and Chang Lee that Gallifrey was "[o]n the other side of your galaxy" and "250 million light-years away" from Earth. (TV: Doctor Who) Another put Gallifrey 30,000 light-years from Earth. (PROSE: The Devil Goblins from Neptune) It was described as "the Shining World of the Seven Systems". (TV: The Sound of Drums)

Besides its physical location, the Homeworld also occupied a unique place in the structure of history: during the anchoring of the thread, it was removed from the Spiral Politic and re-engineered into a biodata-enabled receiver and processor of information. (PROSE: The Book of the War)

Shortly before the War in Heaven, Greyjan the Sane's plan for creating clones of Gallifrey was implemented. (PROSE: The Ancestor Cell) By the fiftieth year of the War, it was unclear if the original Homeworld was still located in its original place or if it had been moved elsewhere and replaced with a decoy; (PROSE: The Book of the War) it was rumoured that not even the Lord President knew which Gallifrey was the original. (PROSE: The Taking of Planet 5) All the Gallifreys were seemingly destroyed during the War in Heaven along with the Time Lords, (PROSE: The Adventuress of Henrietta Street) although the Time Lords were eventually restored to existence. (PROSE: The Tomorrow Windows) A group of Oldblood Great Houses created many "lesser Homeworlds" which fought simplified models of the War in bottle universes and oxbow realities. (PROSE: A Prelude to a Prelude)

Near the end of the Last Great Time War, Gallifrey was removed from the time lock and relocated near to Earth with potentially devastating consequences for the latter planet. The Tenth Doctor returned it to the time lock by shooting and destroying the diamond which connected Gallifrey to Earth. (TV: The End of Time) At the end of the Time War, it was frozen in time in a pocket universe for its own protection by "all thirteen" incarnations of the Doctor. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)

Missy later told the Doctor that Gallifrey had returned to its original position. The Doctor travelled to these coordinates and found only empty space, believing Missy to have lied. (TV: Death in Heaven) The truth was, Gallifrey had in fact returned to the universe as Missy said. However, it had been placed at the extreme end of the time continuum for protection. The General described Gallifrey's location as "the end of the universe, give or take a star system." (TV: Hell Bent)

Astronomical data[edit | edit source]

Worldline[edit | edit source]

Gallifrey itself was protected by a complex temporal defence, its worldline twisted and warped through all eleven dimensions to hide it from Enemy attack. (PROSE: The Quantum Archangel)

Size[edit | edit source]

Gallifrey was several times larger than Earth. (TV: The End of Time) According to another account, however, Gallifrey was the same size as Earth. (PROSE: Dead Romance)

Star system[edit | edit source]

The two suns over the destroyed Capitol. (TV: Spyfall)

Gallifrey was in a binary star system. The second star seemed to rise in the south in the morning, making the mountains glow. (TV: Gridlock) The main star was large and golden red. (AUDIO: The Forever Trap) It was located in one of Earth's twelve Zodiac signs. (PROSE: A Tour of the Capital)

The system contained five other planets, (TV: The Invasion of Time) among them Karn, (TV: The Brain of Morbius, AUDIO: Vortex Ice) Reave, (AUDIO: A Heart on Both Sides) and Polarfrey, as well as an asteroid named Kasterborous the Fibster. (PROSE: Lungbarrow)

Satellites[edit | edit source]

Gallifrey had at least two large moons and a ring system, similar to Saturn in Earth's solar system. (COMIC: Agent Provocateur) One of the moons was the copper-coloured Pazithi Gallifreya, which shone so brightly it could be seen during the day. (PROSE: Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible, Lungbarrow) Gallifrey's moons perished with the Daleks when Gallifrey disappeared. (COMIC: Agent Provocateur, TV: The Day of the Doctor)

Landscape[edit | edit source]

From orbit, the planet's surface appeared mostly barren, with only a few visible buildings. (COMIC: Return of the Daleks) Its landscape was rust-coloured, with brown lakes and grey clouds. (PROSE: Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible) Following the Last Great Time War, it was still rust and brown coloured but had a more volcanically-active appearance. (TV: The End of Time)

Susan Foreman once described it as "a brown, green, snow-capped planet." (AUDIO: The Beginning)

From the planet's surface, it boasted an orange sky at night, (TV: "A Desperate Venture") snow-capped slopes of red grass, (TV: Gridlock) and trees with bright silver leaves. (TV: "A Desperate Venture", Gridlock) These reflected the morning sunlight, making it look like the forests were on fire. (TV: Gridlock) There were also green forests, golden fields, and red deserts, (PROSE: Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible) but overall it was a much drier world than Earth. (PROSE: Lungbarrow) The Sixth Doctor once declared the climate to be "like the Serengeti all year round". (PROSE: Spiral Scratch) There was also a river called Lethe. (AUDIO: Master) The wastelands around the Capitol were referred to as "outer Gallifrey" by the Time Lords. (TV: The Invasion of Time) Rassilon later referred to the area that the barn in which the Doctor had slept as a child as the Drylands, claiming that no one of importance lived there. (TV: Hell Bent)

Most of the mountainous southern hemisphere had a fierce and wintry landscape. (PROSE: The Scarlet Empress)

The sky during the day resembled that of Earth's blue sky. (TV: The Invasion of Time) As such, the shift from night to day (and vice versa) appeared to be half orange and half blue. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)

Known geographic features[edit | edit source]

Regions of Gallifrey[edit | edit source]

The Citadel was located on the continent of Wild Endeavour. (TV: The Sound of Drums)

The Drylands were on Gallifrey, typically the area where, according to Rassilon, "nobody who mattered" lived. (TV: Hell Bent)

The Death Zone was an area used as a battleground in which Time Lords would watch other species fight to the death. Although these battles were stopped by Rassilon, the Death Zone remained and later became home to the Tomb of Rassilon. (TV: The Five Doctors)

Arcadia was Gallifrey's second city. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)

The black, friable spires of Yarvelling's Church from Skaro were a fragment of the Last Great Time War. According to one account, the Eighth Doctor saw the Cathedral fused with fragments of Morbius' Red Capitol in the backwater where he triggered the Moment. (PROSE: Doctor Who and the Time War)

There was also a mountainous region known as South Gallifrey, (TV: State of Decay) which was outside the territory of the Great Houses. (PROSE: The Return of the King)

Killer Cats lived in Gin-Seng. (AUDIO: Erasure, The Last Fairy Tale, etc.)

Mountains[edit | edit source]

Mount Cadon (PROSE: Timewyrm: Revelation, Lucifer Rising, The Three Paths) was also known as Mount Lung (PROSE: Lungbarrow, The Three Paths) and Mount Plutarch. (PROSE: The Three Paths)

The Citadel of the Time Lords was located in the mountains of Solace and Solitude. (TV: The Sound of Drums)

Other mountains on Gallifrey included Mount Perdition (TV: The End of Time) and the Mountain of Serenity. (PROSE: The Stranger)

The Myridian mountains separated the Arcadian desert from the lowlands of Outer Gallifrey. (AUDIO: Mistfall)

Rivers, lakes, and oceans[edit | edit source]

There were at least two known rivers and one lake: Cadonflood River, (PROSE: Lungbarrow) the Lethe river, (AUDIO: Master) and Lake Abydos. (AUDIO: Neverland) Less than half of Gallifrey's surface was covered with water. (PROSE: Coldheart)

History[edit | edit source]

A spaceship approaches Gallifrey. (TV: The Invasion of Time)

Main article: Gallifreyan history

Gallifrey existed as early as the Dark Times. (COMIC: Old Girl) The Kotturuh visited during this period and judged its people as having much to offer in the future. (PROSE: The Knight, The Fool and The Dead) The Dalek Time Squad was ordered to attack Gallifrey in this time period by the Emperor. Gallifrey was defended by the Eighth, Ninth and Tenth Doctors aboard the Donna until Inyit’s judgement threw the Dalek forces into chaos. (PROSE: All Flesh is Grass)

Gallifrey was originally ruled by the Pythias. The last Pythia was overthrown in a revolution led by Rassilon. (PROSE: Cat’s Cradle: Time’s Crucible) Rassilon founded a new society of Time Lords on Gallifrey, (TV: The Deadly Assassin) alongside Omega (TV: The Three Doctors) and an other. (PROSE: Remembrance of the Daleks)

Rassilon brought the Eye of Harmony to Gallifrey, providing power (TV: The Deadly Assassin) and acting as a “hitching post” for the Web of Time. (AUDIO: Neverland) This gave Gallifrey a special relationship with time. (PROSE: Lungbarrow) After generations of work, the Disciples of Omega created the Transduction Barriers to protect Gallifrey. (AUDIO: Renaissance)

In preparation for war, Gallifrey was duplicated in the Nine Gallifreys project. (PROSE: The Shadows of Avalon) The enemy destroyed the original Gallifrey during the War in Heaven, though the Time Lords continued fighting from the other Gallifreys. (PROSE: Alien Bodies) One Gallifrey was destroyed by the Eighth Doctor. (PROSE: The Ancestor Cell)

On the final day of the Last Great Time War, a conflict fought between the Time Lords and Daleks, the Time Lords, led by Rassilon, broke the time lock to materialise Gallifrey in Earth's skies in 2009, thinking the War Doctor would precipitate their ultimate demise on that final day through the Moment. However, the Tenth Doctor sent the planet, Time Lords included, back to its doomed fate, by breaking the link that brought the Time Lords to Earth. (TV: The End of Time)

Several different accounts of the Fall of Gallifrey existed. While one account showed Gallifrey being destroyed by the Eighth Doctor when he used the Moment to end the Time War, (PROSE: Doctor Who and the Time War) and one source claimed that millions of Time Lords indeed died in an instant when the Doctor ended the Time War, driving the Matrix to madness in the process, (COMIC: Sky Jacks) most other accounts indicated that Gallifrey and its inhabitants had not actually been destroyed, but rather frozen in time in a pocket dimension, "like a painting" as the War Doctor put it, by the first thirteen incarnations of the Doctor. (TV: The Day of the Doctor) However another account suggested that hundreds of incarnations of the Doctor past and future saved the planet. (PROSE: The Day of the Doctor) The vast majority of the Daleks died in the crossfire when Gallifrey disappeared, (TV: The Day of the Doctor) with most of the survivors running away in terror to parts unknown at the sight of this sudden and incomprehensible victory by their greatest enemy. (PROSE: The Day of the Doctor)

The Eleventh Doctor would subsequently spend 900 years (PROSE: Tales of Trenzalore: The Eleventh Doctor's Last Stand) defending a crack in time linking Gallifrey with the planet Trenzalore. (TV: The Time of the Doctor) The Twelfth Doctor unsuccessfully attempted to find the planet after Missy told him untruthfully that it had returned to its original position in time and space, (TV: Death in Heaven) and finally spent 4.5 billion years (TV: Hell Bent) trapped inside a confession dial, gradually beating his way through a wall of solid azbantium, until he finally broke through, revealing a portal back to Gallifrey. (TV: Heaven Sent) The Doctor learned that at some point, Gallifrey was unfrozen and moved to "the end of the universe give or take a star system" for its own protection. Clara Oswald suggested that the Time Lords moved Gallifrey there to hide as "everybody" hated them. After returning, the Doctor overthrew Rassilon and used an extraction chamber to save Clara's life before fleeing once more in a stolen TARDIS. (TV: Hell Bent)

At some point, the Master returned to Gallifrey while it was hiding inside a bubble universe and learned that its entire history had been "built on a lie". Enraged, he ravaged the planet and left it in ruin. Upon encountering the Thirteenth Doctor, the Master persuaded her to visit the planet again to observe the destruction. (TV: Spyfall) Its ruins later appeared at the Boundary, where the Master met the Thirteenth Doctor once again, promising that "everything [was] about to change". (TV: Ascension of the Cybermen) The Doctor returned to Gallifrey with the Master who used the Matrix to reveal the truth about the Timeless Child and Gallifrey's history to the Doctor. The Master invited Ashad and his army of Cybermen to the planet and attempted to create an army of CyberMasters out of the Time Lord corpses. However, the Cybermen were defeated by the Doctor and her companions while Ko Sharmus detonated the death particle to stop the Master, wiping out all organic life on Gallifrey, the Master and CyberMasters presumably included. (TV: The Timeless Children) The Doctor later told Ryan that all life on Gallifrey had been destroyed thanks to Ko Sharmus and the death particle. (TV: Revolution of the Daleks)

A history book stated that, mere moments away from the heat death of creation, all that remained was a couple of scattered immortals and Gallifrey. It described Gallifrey as having been “returned from the pocket universe” it was hidden in. (PROSE: The Whoniverse) At the very end of time itself, part of the Cloisters were preserved in a reality bubble sustained by Me, who claimed to be the last immortal, so she could watch the end of everything. The Twelfth Doctor visited there with talk to Me about the Hybrid. After the discussion, the two left in the TARDIS he had acquired, after which the reality bubble gave out and the universe finally ended. (TV: Hell Bent)

Settlements[edit | edit source]

The Capitol. (TV: The Sound of Drums)

A major city on Gallifrey was known as the Citadel (TV: The Invasion of Time, The Sound of Drums) or sometimes, the Capitol. (TV: The Deadly Assassin)

Dronid and Karn were colonies of Gallifrey. (PROSE: Shada, Alien Bodies, Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible)

Arcadia, Gallifrey's "second city", was protected by a large number of sky trenches. These defences failed on the last day of the Time War, and the city was ravaged by the Daleks. The War Doctor was present at the Fall of Arcadia, and it was there that he left his warning of "No More" for the combatants. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)

Two other cities, called Olyesti and Slothe, also existed. (PROSE: The Infinity Doctors, Blind Fury)

Native species[edit | edit source]

Flora[edit | edit source]

Gallifrey had a wide variety of plant life, ranging in colour from silver to green and golden. Known plant species included the Schlenk Blossom, (PROSE: Island of Death) ulanda, (PROSE: Blind Fury) and the Madevinia aridosa. (PROSE: Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible) The Master's father's estate was lush with red grass. (TV: The End of Time) The Third Doctor also once said that there were daisies on Gallifrey. (TV: The Time Monster) Weanskrike and Tristort grew on Mount Lung. (PROSE: The Three Paths) There was also a red flower that resembled a cross between a rose and a daisy, known to Gallifreyans as a Sarlain. (PROSE: Timewyrm: Revelation) The Flower of Remembrance was a six-petalled yellow flower, (PROSE: The Infinity Doctors, The Ancestor Cell) and one of the few symbols of death on the planet. (PROSE: Dead Time, The Ancestor Cell) Another flower grown on Gallifrey was a moonlight bloom, which, according to the Eighth Doctor, was symbolic for peace and meditation, until it became a symbol of cowardice among Time Lord soldiers during the Time War. (AUDIO: The Conscript) There were trees on Gallifrey which bear large, yellow, edible fruit. (PROSE: The Twins in the Wood)

Fauna[edit | edit source]

Animals native to Gallifrey included flutterwings, (TV: The Pirate Planet) flies, (TV: Heaven Sent) Woprats (PROSE: Heart of TARDIS) broakirs, trunkikes, yaddlefish, (PROSE: Blind Fury) flubbles, (PROSE: Island of Death) tafelshrews, (PROSE: Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible) plungbolls ,(AUDIO: The Ghosts of N-Space) rabbits, (AUDIO: Caerdroia) rovies, (AUDIO: No Place Like Home) mice, cats, (TV: The Mark of the Rani, PROSE: Human Nature) the Killer Cats of Gin-Seng, (AUDIO: Erasure, PROSE: The Return of the King) pig-rats, (AUDIO: Panacea) cobblemice, (PROSE: Unnatural History, The Gallifrey Chronicles) and, of course, the Gallifreyans themselves. Dogs with black-and-white striped fur and which made mewing noises were found in forests on Gallifrey. (PROSE: The Twins in the Wood)

In the past, the dinosaur-like Gargantosaurs lived on the planet. (COMIC: The Stolen TARDIS) According to one account, no animal had gone extinct from the planet. (PROSE: The Last Dodo) However, according to another account, a large lizard-like creature that had been placed out of its time in the Death Zone was described by the War Doctor as "a long-extinct species from before the Time Lords ever walked the planet". (PROSE: Engines of War)

Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]

  • Although the planet was referenced numerous times earlier, and even seen on occasion (TV: The War Games and The Three Doctors for instance), the name Gallifrey was not uttered on screen until Jon Pertwee did so in The Time Warrior. In the revived series, the name Gallifrey was mentioned for the first time in The Runaway Bride.
  • In the original script of The Time Warrior, Gallifrey was scripted as "Galfrey", but was later changed.
  • Even though the first on-screen mention of Gallifrey was in The Time Warrior, broadcast in December 1973, the word appeared in TV Action #126, put out for the week ending 14 July 1973. There, in the letters column, the editors responded to a question from Simon Still of Kent who asked where the Master came from. The answer? "The Master's home planet was called 'Gallifrey'." This probably doesn't mean, however, that Polystyle gets the credit for "Gallifrey". Since shooting on The Time Warrior wrapped on 12 June 1973, and the scripts had been completed earlier that spring, the likelihood is not that the TV Action originated the name, but that they were given it by the Doctor Who production office.

External links[edit | edit source]

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