By Richard Bruce BA, MA, and PhC in Economics

Gilda of Oz Influenced Wonder Woman

In the second Oz book written by Frank Baum, The Marvelous Land of Oz Glinda the good witch lassos the evil witch, Mombi, with a golden thread. Mombi had hidden from Glinda by transforming herself into a number of things. As Glinda saw through Mombi's transformations she ultimately changed into a griffin. The magical golden thread transformed Mombi back into a witch, thus revealing her true self.

Wonder Women has a golden lasso that forces people to tell the truth, thus revealing their true self.

Glinda tells Mombi that the magic thread can not be broken. Wonder Woman's lasso is generally considered unbreakable, though over the last eighty plus years of comic books I believe there has been at least one exception.

After capturing Mombi with the golden lasso. Glinda wears a magic necklace with a pearl that turns black when Mombi lies and white when she tells the truth. So just as Wonder Woman can force the truth out of an unwilling villain with her golden lasso Glinda can with the combination of her golden thread and her pearl necklace do the same thing.

This is the major reason that I believe that Glinda the good witch inspired some elements of Wonder Woman, specifically the golden lasso of truth. There were, however, some other similarities.

Glinda commanded an army composed entirely of women, just as Themyscira, the island where Wonder Woman comes from, has an army entirely of women, the Amazons. This is revealed in the same book as the above, The Marvelous Land of Oz.

Finally Oz and Themyscira are both hidden lands, unknown to most of the human race. Since such hidden lands were quite common in adventure literature of the period, I do not expect you to be very impressed by this similarity.

Finally let me not that The Marvelous Land of Oz was published in 1904. Wonder Woman first appeared in 1941. Perhaps the creators of Wonder Woman read the Oz books as children.

Last edited August 26, 2015

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