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Amnesia Wiki

Sir William Smith is a mentioned character in Amnesia: The Dark Descent, seemingly based on the real-life person of the same name. He was a geologist and a victim of the Shadow. According to one of Daniel's diary entries, he died the night of July 4, 1839, not long after the two of them interacted.[3]



The real-life William Smith was a pioneering geologist, who created and published "the first detailed, nationwide geological map" of Great Britain in 1815.[2] He encountered financial difficulties during his career and spent a year in debtor's prison in 1819 and thereafter had his home and property seized.[2][1] Homeless, he worked as a travelling surveyor for years until settling down near Scarborough in Yorkshire.[2][1] Smith designed a geological museum there, the Rotunda, built in 1829.[1][5]

Towards the end of his life, Smith began to be recognized for his monumental work in geology. In 1831, he was granted the first Wollaston Medal by the Geological Society of London, and a year after, at age 63, he began receiving a pension from the crown for his work.[2][1] Smith also was the recipient of an honorary law Doctorate by Dublin's Trinity College.[1]

Events of The Dark Descent[]

A few months before the beginning of Amnesia: The Dark Descent, Daniel returned to England from the expedition in Algeria, bringing his collection of artifacts, including the broken Orb from the Tomb of Tin Hinan. Daniel realized that the several pieces of the shattered Orb were behaving very strangely, seeming to change colours and shape constantly. On June 25th, 1839, he assured himself this was true by careful experimental measurement.[4]

Daniel was frightened and eventually met Smith in London.[4] Smith explained to Daniel, using glass as an easy example, that rocks were not eternally static solids, but could flow, melt, merge, and reshape over the action heat and pressure over time.[4] This put Daniel's mind at ease temporarily. However, almost a week later, he was killed in the night.[3] Smith was possibly an impediment on the Shadow's "path" to reclaim the Orb from Daniel.


  • It is not entirely clear if Sir William Smith of Amnesia and William Smith of Churchill are intended to be one and the same person. There are a few minor differences which, while not conclusive disproof, give some pause.
    • The date of death differs between the Amnesia character and the historical one.
    • The location of death for the historical figure was in Northampton, on the way to a "scientific meeting in Birmingham,"[2] but there is nothing in-game to suggest the Amnesia character left London before being killed by the Shadow.
  • Sir William Smith is the first person who is killed by the Shadow for being on the "path" to Daniel; the second is Professor Taylor, and the third is Doctor Tate.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 "William Smith (geologist)." Accessed 8 August 2022. Last revised 17 May 2022. Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 "William Smith." Accessed 7 December 2021. Published 24 Aug 2021. Encyclopedia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Daniel's Diary: 5th of July 1839 (TDD)
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Daniel's Diary: 25th of June 1839 (TDD)
  5. "Rotunda Museum". Accessed 8 August 2022. Last revised 28 June 2022. Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation.