Auryn amulet

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For the Spanish boy band, see Auryn.
AURYN is an Ouroboros talisman in The Neverending Story.[1][2] It is empowered by the Childlike Empress. In the novel, AURYN is always spelled in capital letters and is revered by all Fantasticans as "The Gem" and "The Glory" (German: das Kleinod, der Glanz). While the book makes noteworthy the point that the image of AURYN is on its "cover(s)", it does not actually refer to it as AURYN.[3] The name of the amulet is not the same as that of a simple inanimate object. The word 'the' never precedes that amulet's name (i.e., never "the AURYN"). Instead, it is used simply as AURYN, a proper noun like a person's name.

Two mythological serpents, symmetrical, bite at the other's tail.[3] (In the film, these form a Celtic knot; whereas in the book, they form an oval).[1] One serpent is white and one is black. Each has an eye to correspond to the color of the book's print (red and green). The two snakes represent the dual nature of the two worlds, Fantastica and Reality, but also the twin nature of their mutual creation and destruction. On the back of AURYN are these words:

"Do what thou wilt" (German: "Tu, was du willst").

AURYN helps guide Atreyu through Fantastica in his quest to find a cure for the ailing Childlike Empress, and in turn defeat the Nothing. It serves him clandestinely, but does return him to the Ivory Tower. In the hands of the Childlike Empress, AURYN releases seven spirits to carry her as she seeks the Old Man of Wandering Mountain.

In the interior of AURYN, the two serpents guard the Waters of Life, which serve as the exit from Fantastica.

Noah Hathaway, who starred in the 1984 movie, when he was 12, retired from acting after a long career as an actor, with his post-acting careers including working as a tattoo artist.[4] He described tattoos based on the movie as popular, saying he gave 15 clients a auryn tattoos in a single week. Country musician Brandi Carlile has talked about the matching auryn tattoos she and two of her band-mates got.[5][6]


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Myth and Emotions". Cambridge Scholars Publishing. 2017. pp. 158, 160, 161, 163. ISBN 9781527505094. Retrieved 2019-05-26. 
  2. Eduardo Encabo; Juan Varela Tembra. "Teaching, Children’s Literature and Transtextuality. Die Unedliche Geschichte (The Neverending Story)". Universidad de Murcia. Retrieved 2019-05-26. "It is clear that having the Auryn is a trap. It is the same as the prolonged use of the ring made by Sauron, because it both provokes a slow loss of awareness and the appearance of different behaviour.". 
  3. 3.0 3.1 Timothy Gilmore. "Toward the death and flowering of transcendtalism in Walt Whitman". University of Florida. Retrieved 2019-05-26. "When Bastian reads of the presentation of the Auryn to Atreyu by the representative of “the Childlike Empress,” he’s stunned to realize it’s the same symbol as the one on the cover of his strange book. It is, in fact, the symbol of two serpents, convoluted together and swallowing each other’s tails. The Auryn symbolizes the neverending nature of the story in the same way the lemniscate symbolizes infinity in mathematics, by showing a closed circuit with no end and no beginning. The Auryn is, in fact, a variation of the ouroboros, the symbol of the serpent swallowing its tail, which I use as a trope in the following study." 
  4. Craig Sailor (2015-08-09). "Noah Hathaway shares his neverending Hollywood story". The News Tribune. Retrieved 2019-05-29. "The ultimate fan tribute: Hundreds of 'Neverending Story' tattoos. He made a few himself while working as a tattoo artist in Europe. 'I wouldn’t do another Auryn (talisman) tattoo because I did 15 in three weeks,' he said. 'It is very flattering though.'" 
  5. Allison Jones; Alex Madison (2015-09-09). "10 Reasons We Should All Have a Crush on Brandi Carlile". PDX Monthly. Archived from the original on January 2, 2016. Retrieved 2019-05-29. "They even have matching tattoos of the auryn talisman from The NeverEnding Story, a movie they all loved as kids." 
  6. Scott Mclennan. "Interviews: Brandi Carlile". Rip it up magazine. Archived from the original on 2008-12-05. Retrieved 2019-05-29. "Aligned to her storybook interest, Brandi’s tattoos reference a cult 1980s kids’ film. The serpentine symbol of The NeverEnding Story have been recreated on the singer’s shoulders. 'The NeverEnding Story’s my favourite,' Brandi exclaimed with vigour. 'I have the Orin tattooed on each shoulder, since I really love symmetry. I had it tattooed very lightly so that they always looked vintage and identical. I love The Goonies and I love Labyrinth too!'"