Nyarlathotep was the first “fictitious” god HPL ever wrote about unless you consider all gods fictitious like I do. Let us say Nyarlathotep is the first god HPL made up by himself.
This god, fashion, it is hypothesized, on Nicola Tesla debuts in this story as a man with a production not unlike Nicola Tesla had with his Tesla Coil. Nyarlathotep is a presenter if visions, like movies and all who see his show are changed forever in different ways, but all become Nyarlathotep’s servants. When the narrator of the story finally attends the show he too is converted and loses track of time and space and is somehow transported through time with the rest of the crowd.
I won’t give it away.
There are some curious references in this piece to the “yellow evil faces,” which some scholars hypothesize was HPL’s fear of Asian immigrants and the growing world powers in Asia in 1919 and early 1920s. In fact, near the same time this story was written, HPL sent a letter to two of his friends that described his belief that the only way to preserve the white race and all those of European stock, Japan would need to be destroyed, as would the Japanese people to be eradicated. He also pointed out the threat of China due to their large populace even then but thought that the time in which they would be a true threat would not be within his lifetime. Other scholars have tried to relate this reference of, “yellow evil faces,” to some mistake in the coloring of the movies back then, but I think this is an excuse of HPL’s white supremacist views.
I think it is not so difficult to see HPL created gods in his fiction that embodied or illustrated his own fears. Though Cthulhu is surely the most famous, Nyarlathotep is perhaps more interesting as it takes a human form is not so grotesque and obtrusive. Described a swarthy Egyptian Pharao, Nyarlathotep creates havoc within humanity on the basis of HPL’s phobias. It makes me think about the characters from my own book and what fears Nyarlathotep might exploit to gain his followers.