Map Black Coral

Black Coral and environs

Ortnal's Cut, also known as Ortnal Cut[1] and Catfolk Cut,[2] was a very deep, water-filled chasm in the city of Coral. Its calm waters were described as oddly black and impenetrable.[1][3] The river Eryn became Ortnal's Cut twenty or so leagues inland from Coral Bay.[3]

The Cut nearly bisected the city from west to east. Its western end opened into Coral Bay and was once home to the city's harbour. Instead of docks there were long piers and causeways carved into the cliffs. Above the harbour's mouth was netting spanning the Cut where locals known as cat-men tethered anchors and sway-lines to keep ships in place. The Cut was too deep for traditional anchors. The cat-men lived with their wives and children in sealskin-roofed huts and driftwood sheds built among the nets. After the city's occupation by the Pannion Domin, they had been starved by lack of sea-traffic, and the only cat-men still remaining were the salt-dried corpses still tangled in the harbour's nets.[4]

Spoiler warning: The following section contains significant plot details about Ortnal's Cut.

In Memories of IceEdit

The Cut's deep waters were vast enough to hide Moon's Spawn during the Malazan Empire's Siege of Coral. At the climax of the battle, Anomander Rake's Skykeep surfaced to make a surprise attack on the Pannion Seer's keep.[5]


Although it was made clear in Memories of Ice that the River Eryn fed into Ortnal's Cut, the map of Coral included with Toll the Hounds shows no river.

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 Memories of Ice, Chapter 12, US SFBC p.418
  2. Toll the Hounds, Map of Black Coral & Environs
  3. 3.0 3.1 Memories of Ice, Chapter 23, US SFBC p.814
  4. Memories of Ice, Chapter 20, US SFBC p.696-697
  5. Memories of Ice, Chapter 25, US SFBC p.935
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