The Liskash[1], informally known as the dinos[2], were a sentient reptilian species, and the self-proclaimed rulers of the world. After the age of reptiles had continued for millions of years, the warm-blooded Liskash reacted to their own fierce competitiveness by developing a heightened intelligence. Some Liskash possessed powers of telepathy and mind control, and these were acknowledged as feudal lords over all the rest.

As the Ice Age was drawing to a close, the Liskash came in contact with immigrants from the north: the Mrem, a feline species which had become the first mammal to achieve sentience. The Liskash refused to see the intelligent cats as equals, regarding them as a source of slave labor and occasional food.

Literary comment[]

The Liskash (sometimes spelled Lishkash or Lizcanth) were created by editor Bill Fawcett for the multi-author Guardians of the Three series in 1989. They reappeared in the same editor's Shattered Light series in 1999. The Clan of the Claw series, of which Harry Turtledove's "The Mrem Go West" (2011) is the first installment, appears to be a continuity reboot without reference to prior storylines.

Within the stories, all reptiles (including ceratopsians, pterosaurs, mosasaurs, etc.) are referred to as "Liskash." For simplicity, this wiki uses the term Liskash to refer to the sentient species only.

The cover of Exiled: Clan of the Claw Volume 1, showing a Mrem fighting against a sword-wielding dragon-man, is inaccurate, as no creature matching that description ever appears in any Clan of the Claw story. The cover of By Tooth and Claw: Clan of the Claw Volume 2, depicts the Liskash as dromaeosaurids, which is more consistent with the in-story descriptions.


  1. While the name is spelled Lishkash on the dust jacket of Exiled: Clan of the Claw, it is Liskash in all the stories within.
  2. This word first appears in "Cata," by Jody Lynn Nye and John Ringo, the fourth story in Book One. Turtledove did not use it in his story.