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I was the first to solve the mysteries of the gatebuilders. I was the first human to breach the boundaries between worlds. I, Professor Thurston Aloysius Herbert, of Cambridge, England, was the first.

Herbert, in his final note

Professor Thurston Aloysius Herbert was a professor at the University of Cambridge and the leader of the ill-fated expedition in Algeria. Daniel was his research assistant.

He is voiced by Eric Newsome.[1]


Early life[]

Not much of Herbert's past is known. From letters, it reveals he was a long-time friend of Monsieur Florbelle and was familiar with his daughter Justine.[citation needed] In January 1839, he requested passage into Algeria from the French aristocrat.[citation needed] He was certain someone of French nobility could speed up the process to be granted the permits into French-occupied territory he required.[citation needed]

Expedition to Algeria[]

Herbert organized the expedition, that was "signed and paid for by the British Museum,"[2] to the tomb of Tin Hinan, in the desert of Algeria.[citation needed] He was Florbelle's (Justine's father) friend,[citation needed] and it was thanks to him that he could receive the permits for the expedition from the French consulate.[citation needed] Another friend of Herbert, Faraj, gave him a mysterious map to the tomb.[citation needed] The map was apparently owned by Johann Weyer.[citation needed]

Monsieur Florbelle contacted the consulate to send the permits to Herbert.[citation needed] Florbelle never got the chance to let his friend know this in writing, as his mentally ill daughter murdered him before he could even finish the letter.[citation needed] Likewise, Herbert also didn't wait for the reply nor did he investigate into Florbelle's prolonged absence.[citation needed]

An unfinished letter by an archeologist from Prof. Herbert's team

He took Daniel, his colleague from the university, plus many Arab workers along with him to the expedition. Ever curious, Daniel enquired what the Professor hoped to find there.[citation needed] As Herbert gave an account on the exact whereabouts of the tomb and legends of "Tin Hinan / The Mother of Us All," Daniel started to suspect there was an ulterior motive to this entire African expedition and the Professor knew far more than he was letting on as if he was intentionally hiding information from him.[citation needed] On around 16th May 1839, he and his expedition took shelter at Al-Mamaru Fort. Then continued to their way on finding the tomb (or, excavating the tomb).

Daniel's relationship with Herbert was unclear but it seems he subjected him to humiliation on at least one occasion during their expedition to Algeria. The Professor forced[citation needed] Daniel to use a ridiculous pink parasol to protect him from the desert's harsh sun. It became clear from the cold factual statements in Herbert's recovered journal that he did not care for Daniel's welfare should his presence ever endanger or hinder their journey's success.[citation needed]

While he expressed some concern for the young man who nearly suffocated when sealed in the ancient ante-chamber, from his passionless annotations all that mattered to Herbert was recovering the Orb which he desperately sought from its tomb.[speculation] After freeing Daniel from the burial chamber where he was trapped, Herbert decided it's better to send him to England to recover.[citation needed] Daniel was sent back to Britain against his will with the shattered Orb in tow.[citation needed] When Daniel later learned of the Professor's disappearance, however, he worried for his safety nevertheless.[citation needed]

The expedition went on. Herbert continued pushing his unwilling men further forward to the brink of insanity.[citation needed] According to his diary, he found another Orb.[citation needed] His knowledge and intentions to misuse the second relic roused the Shadow's anger. Recovering the Orb drew the Shadow's wrath onto him and his men, some of which were brutally mangled by it.[citation needed] Herbert believed that the murders were committed by his terrorized men to force the expedition to end so he took extreme measures to keep control of the situation.[citation needed]

The men blamed the Orb for all of this. Knowing they might try to dispose of the Orb the Professor shot one of the men to restore order, and ensured they wouldn't dare seize it from him, calling them all "animals."[citation needed] Herbert sent one of the workers, Abdullah, out to contact the French authorities. Just two days later (the 22nd of May 1839) the expedition is completely wiped out by the Shadow.[citation needed] In his last diary entry he writes:

That thing is after me. It has been hunting me for days. But I keep out of its trail, so I will persevere. I can see a settlement at the edge of the desert. I'm getting closer. I can see it. But it is not me, it is Abdullah. Through his eyes I see, his mind I hear. Confined to myself, I see only death dressed in the Orb's darkest shadow.

Abdullah, the man who was sent to Algiers, arrived maimed by the Shadow and delirious, but alive. After the arrival of Abdullah, the French dispatched a search party to look for the expedition.[citation needed] They found the camp abandoned with no sign of Herbert or his men. Their bodies were never recovered.

His final fate in The Dark World.


After his expedition team was wiped out, he found a way to escape from the Shadow and managed to travel to The Other World with a portal. However, just because he didn't have a Traveler's Locket at that time, couldn't return back to our world. While he was at the Other World, he searched for ways to return without any success. He managed to find 2 weak spots for possible portals. But, just because he didn't have a locket with him, he couldn't return to our world. Later on, he died from starvation and dehydration in a cave, as there are no food and water sources that he can consume. In his last dairy entry, he claims that he is the first "human" to travel to Dark World.


  • “There is no shame in using a parasol in the desert. As it happens, it’s imperative to your survival.”
    “The shame will hurt much less than dying, I assure you.”
  • “[T]hings don’t always turn out the way we plan.”
  • “I was the first to solve the mysteries of the gatebuilders. I was the first human to breach the boundaries between worlds. I, Professor Thurston Aloysius Herbert, of Cambridge, England, was the first.”


  • Two of the contacts in Herbert's stolen address book were Monsieur Florbelle (Justine's father) and the other, Alexander of Brennenburg.[citation needed] Everyone mentioned in this book was among his most trusted friends and confidantes.[speculation] It is very possible that the Professor was well acquainted with the Prussian baron as well, and was even under his employ.[speculation][There is no reason to suppose that because a person keeps in contact with someone else, they must have been their employer, much less assert it.] He may have been sent to Algeria to retrieve an Orb for him after the baron had accidentally broken Agrippa's Orb in his hastiness to return "home."
  • Herbert refusing to disclose every detail about the tomb or the relics sought within seemed to indicate he was using Daniel as a tool, a means to an end.[speculation: This also simply may be part of his personality, or because he reasoned that a novice like Daniel didn't need to know everything.]