(Note thee well, young reader, that some stories in this profile are from a more mature-themed magazine,
and thus may not be appropriate for everyone)

cathryn-katzenborndragon-embraceReal Name: Cathryn (surname unrevealed)

Identity/Class: Human;
    citizen of the Holy Roman Empire
(but close enough to be included under Germans in my book);
    16th century

Occupation: Unrevealed

Group Membership: Staff of the Black Raven Inn

AffiliationsSolomon Kane;

Enemies: Katzenborn dragon, Hans von Frankenstein, at least some of the people of Nieder-Beerbach

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: "Barmaid" (from Hans von Frankenstein); "Child" (from Solomon Kane); "Wench" (from Hans von Frankenstein's knights); 

Base of Operations: Unrevealed;
    perished in
the crevice/valley surrounding the Katzenborn brook/spring, near the village of Nieder-Beerbach in what is now Hesse and/or Darmstadt, Germany;
    formerly the village of Nieder-Beerbach (notably employed at the Black Raven Inn), several miles from Darmstadt, in the landgraviate of Hesse, part of the Holy Roman Empire

First Appearance(Marvel) Savage Sword of Conan#22/5 "The Dragon at Castle Frankenstein" (September, 1977)

Powers/Abilities: Cathryn had no known superhuman abilities.

    A beautiful and healthy young woman, she presumably had some skills in her work at the Black Raven Inn, which may have included waitressing, bar tending, cleaning, and/or dancing, at least.

    She was willing to use romance to thank a man for saving her life, and she was similarly willing to subsequently risk her own life to aid her savior.

and her specific skills -- beyond being Nieder-Beerbach's fairest maiden -- are unrevealed.

Height: Unrevealed (approximately 5'2" to 5'4"; she appeared to be about as tall as the 6' tall Solomon Kane's chin)
Weight: Unrevealed (approximately 110-130 lbs.)
Eyes: Unrevealed (black and white comic)
Hair: Blonde

(Savage Sword of Conan I#22/5 (fb) - BTS) - In an effort to spare the rest of the village from the Katzenborn dragon (and having done the same with regards to its predecessor and presumed relative, the Scheusslischer Lindwurm), Hans, the Baron von Frankenstein, ordered the regular sacrifice of maidens.

(Savage Sword of Conan I#22/5 (fb) - BTS) <Circa 1555 A.D.; see comments > - Prompted by rumors of some "Hell-spawned" dragon plaguing the villagers of the region, Puritan warrior Solomon Kane journeyed to Nieder-Beerbach.

(Savage Sword of Conan I#22/5 (fb) - BTS) <Circa 1555 A.D. > - Under Hans' orders, a trio of knights grabbed the young maiden Cathryn as she worked at the Black Raven Inn, seizing her as if she was "some common tart" (per her own words).

(Savage Sword of Conan I#22/5) - As Cathryn struggled against the knights, one of them warned her not to force them to cut her pretty flesh as the baron liked his offerings unmarred. Another of the knights told the others to strike her if needed, but to do it quickly, as they had to get her to well before nightfall.

    However, they were interrupted by the arriving Solomon Kane, who told the knights that he prayed that they had made their peace with their maker as, in but moments, they would be meeting him. When the knights refused to back down, Kane dropped one with the hilt of his sword and then swiftly slew the other two. To save his own life, the first knight explained how the woman's abduction had been ordered by by Hans von Frankenstein.

    Kane comforted the young woman, telling her "that disgrace to knighthood" would not return, and he assured her that she was safe with Solomon Kane. Both grateful and attracted to her powerful savior, Cathryn embraced Kane, telling him that she would willingly repay for saving her life as she tried to kiss him. However, the chaste Kane refused her charms, telling her that he had foresworn the pleasures of the flesh. When she was surprised at his response, he told her to try to understand that their ways were different; though she burst into tears in response, she ultimately led him to Castle Frankenstein.

    Cathryn remained silent as Kane confronted and disarmed the initially indignant but ultimately ineffective Hans von Frankenstein, who subsequently led them to the village church and shared the history of this dragon and its predecessor. While comforting the frightened Cathryn, Kane coerced Hans to lead him to Katzenborn to confront the dragon. cathryn-katzenborndragon-stung

    Minutes later, as they reached the edge of ravine, Cathryn considered that they were going to put her down there. Hans accompanied Kane down a rope under duress, and Kane instructed Cathryn to remain on the surface to be a witness to the outcome of their adventure. He further advised her that if he did not return that she should seek the village priest and have him say a prayer for her soul.

(Savage Sword of Conan I#22/5) - Hearing the dragon's roar as it confronted Kane, Cathryn descended the rope, seeking to repay Kane for having saved her life.

    As she approached Kane, she encountered the fleeing Hans. Surprised, she called out to the Baron, who urged her to get out of his way, noting that if she wished to die with the Puritan, he would not be in her way.

    As the wounded dragon crushed Kane with its tail, Cathryn rushed to give Kane the sword the cowardly Hans had dropped. Although Kane warned her to stay away from its tail, Cathryn delivered the sword to him only to be fatally struck by the venomous stinger on the behemoth's tail. Feeling the effects of the venom in moments, Cathryn's face contorted as she begged Kane to help her, to no avail.

    Seeing Cathryn fall, Kane's soul blazed with rage, and he slashed at the dragon's underbelly, ultimately sinking Hans' sword into its central weak point. Picking up Cathryn's corpse, though still furious, Kane considered that the ways of God were mysterious and sometimes heart-breaking, and that he should not try to understand them. 

    After Kane carried Cathryn back to the surface, he angrily confronted and blamed Hans for her death. Noting that he was carrying her to the village chapel for a proper funeral, he advised Hans that he attend in his finest black to mourn for Cathryn's soul and to pray for his own.

(Savage Sword of Conan I#22/5 (fb) - BTS) - Cathryn's funeral occurred, and she was buried under a mound of hard-packed dirt. 

(Savage Sword of Conan I#22/5 - BTS) - When Hans thanked the departing Kane for saving his life and that of every other person in his village, Kane reminded him of the loss of Cathryn. Kane told Hans that he would see her face in his daydreams and nightmares, which would be his own private Hell until the day of his final judgment.

(Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme#37 (fb)) - The madness of regret descended upon Hans, and rumors of the curse of the Frankensteins grew ever louder, ever wider...

CommentsCreated by Don Glut and Sonny Trinidad.

    Solomon Kane was born in 1530 A.D. (according to, at least, The Trail of Solomon Kane, Kane... the Avenger), and most of his young stories occurred circa the 1550s. Fellow Appendix writer Wolfram Bane, whose Robert E. Howard knowledge significantly exceeds mine, placed the encounter with Kane and the Scheusslischer Lindwurm as occurring around 1555 A.D. 

    Given the above and the established death of Georg von Frankenstein circa 1531, there would seem to be over 20 years between the rampages of the two dragons, depending on how long between the second dragon's emergence and Hans' sacrifices of women Solomon Kane arrived there.
    Perhaps the dragon only emerged once a year, and Hans sacrificed a woman to it each time, for 5, 10, 15, or even 20 years?

    The images and story in the Book of the Vishanti for the story of Hans, Cathryn, and Solomon Kane don't quite match the story in Savage Sword of Conan#22. cathryn-katzenborn_dragon-1550s-drsss37

Notably, in the scene to the right, with three knights and Hans preparing to cast Cathryn to the waiting dragon:
Further, in the main image, in color, with Kane sitting atop the creature's head and stabbing it in the head while Cathryn awaited in chains:
I would think the Book of the Vishanti images were more symbolic than directly factual. They fit with the theme of what happened, if not matching the events directly.

    Cathryn wore shredded rags of clothing as the knights attempted to drag her to the Katzenborn well...they were likely shredded as she struggled against the knights, but perhaps her role at the Black Raven Inn was more of an exotic dancer and that was just her costume...the world may never know...

Profile by Snood.

Cathryn should be distinguished from:

    Not shown on panel, it was only mentioned by Cathryn as the place she worked, from which Hans' knights had seized her "like some common tart."

Savage Sword of Conan I#22/5

: (without ads)

Savage Sword of Conan#22/5 "The Dragon at Castle Frankenstein," pg. 1 (struggling with knights);
        pg. 3, panel 1 (embracing Kane);
        pg. 7, panel 1 (full);
        pg. 11, panel 3 (stung);
Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme#37, pg. 7, panel 5 (taken by knights)

Savage Sword of Conan#22/5 "The Dragon at Castle Frankenstein" (September, 1977) - Don Glut (writer), Sonny Trinidad (art), Archie Goodwin and Roger Slifer (consulting editors), Roy Thomas (editor)
Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme#37 (January, 1992) - Jean-Marc Lofficier, Roy & Dan Thomas (writers), Geof Isherwood (artist), Mike Rockwitz (editor)

First posted02/23/2023
Last updated: 02/28/2023

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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