Seamstress Front

The front of The Semestress

A stringed instrument resembling a zither or dulcimer. It is a Miasma item found in the Marvel Ouse.

The Eremite makes brief mention of the Semestress in "Vignettes On A Disaster, Apparently Not In My Honour." 


The Semestress is made primarily of wood, with attachment points for strings, and a thumb hole. Several strings are missing, leaving only three playable notes: FFF EEE and NNN. The rear of the instrument is painted a rainbow of colors, and is well-preserved despite the overall rotting of the wood and "stringhole sabotage." "The Semestress" is engraved on the front in elegant script.


The PC can pluck a short tune on the Semestress, the key to which can be found in a dream brought about by the Forget-Me-Whole.

When bargaining with the Jugged Man, the PC can offer the Semestress as a gift. This action removes the item from the PC's inventory.

When burned, the Semestress will attract the attention of the Mop, and she will sing for some time after it has been destroyed.

Regarding the instrument, Friend says: 

"e cdnt ply a fing ws so orkwrd we kpt tlln im we no we no bt e faut e wd edcte us e jst mde it so dffclt" ("He couldn't play a thing / was so awkward / we kept telling him, 'We know, we know,' but he thought he would educate us / he just made it so difficult")

Trottering NotesEdit

In the Trottering Notes for this item, Wayle mocks Chester-Stokes' original analysis and classification of the Semestress, flouting his knowledge as superior:

"As a bard myself, I am well aware of gut and all of its properties."

Chester-Stokes is silent on the matter.


The Eremite possesses an instrument similar to the Semestress found in the Marvel Ouse. He extracts it from a case the shape of a huge trotter, and begins to play, though the PC finds the tune disharmonious. 

"He used to tell that the diatonics of your people were wrong, that you were not hearing it correctly. That your songs, the ones you sung on the day that he arrived, sounded just awful to him."

He tries to sing, but cannot remember the words.