I previously posted a map of Joe Abercrombie’s Circle of the World – the setting for his First Law books – a couple of years back. I decided to revisit it ahead of the publication of the next book in the setting, The Trouble with Peace, next month.

First Law Map Colour

A map of the Circle of the World. Please click for a larger version.

This isn’t a major revamp, being the previous map colourised. A more thorough reworking of the map is possible in the future (incorporating the expanded maps of Styria and the Far Country from Best Served Cold and Red Country, for example), but that’s a way off at the moment.

Joe Abercrombie’s First Law world is divided into three continents and numerous large islands.

The North is a land of frozen rivers, towering mountains and ferocious creatures called Shanka. The Northmen are hardy warriors, living in a land of war, raiding and a rough kind of honour.

The western continent is land of prairies and plains, reminiscent of the American West. This continent is the location of the Far Country, where rumours of riches and gold have drawn settlers, and the Old Empire, a formerly great nation that has collapsed into civil war.

The southern continent, Kanta, is a vast land of deserts and arid plains with civilisation clustered around the great rivers. Kanta is the home of the massive Gurkish Empire, the largest and most populous nation in the Circle of the World.

Located between these continents are several islands, the most notable of which are Midderland, Styria, Suljuk and Thond. Midderland is the homeland of the Union, a large empire which includes possessions on all three continental landmasses: Angland in the North, Dagoska in Kanta and Starikland on the western continent. Adua, the capital of the Union, is located in Midderland. Styria is a collection of feuding city-states, the most powerful of which is Talins.


Note on the Map

This map is based closely on the map created by Dave Senior for Sharp Ends, the 2016 Joe Abercrombie collection of short stories set in the same world. I have added some additional locations and included a scale (based on the discussion of the distance from Aostum to Darmium given in the text).


The Circle of the World is the setting for the following novels:

The First Law Trilogy

  1. The Blade Itself (2006)
  2. Before They Are Hanged (2007)
  3. Last Argument of Kings (2008)

Semi-Stand-Alone Books

  • Best Served Cold (2009)
  • The Heroes (2011)
  • Red Country (2012)
  • Sharp Ends: Stories from the World of the First Law (2016)

The Age of Madness Trilogy

  1. A Little Hatred (2019)
  2. The Trouble with Peace (2020)
  3. The Beautiful Machine (2021)

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