|This article is about a location in Umineko no Naku Koro ni.|
The Golden Land (黄金郷 Ōgonkyō) is a location alluded to as the final destination of the witch's epitaph, reached after the conclusion of the ten twilights.
Several accounts of what the Golden Land is like are given in the story. In the context of the epitaph, it is said to be a location reached the tenth twilight. This, however, requires the completion of the previous nine twilights, including the ninth twilight where "none shall be left alive". Those who reach the Golden Land attain four treasures:
- One shall be all the gold from the Golden Land.
- One shall be the resurrection of all the dead souls.
- One shall be the resurrection of the love that was lost.
- One shall be to put the witch to sleep for all time.
Maria often describes the Golden Land in glowing terms. According to her, it is a place where there are no obligations and everyone lives together in harmony. She specifically mentions that there her mother Rosa is nice to her and her father is with them too. Because of the resurrection of the souls of the dead in the Golden Land, Maria does not fear death in the witch's ceremony. Much of her understanding of the Golden Land stems from Beatrice, who promised to take Maria to the Golden Land with her.
For Shannon and Kanon, the Golden Land is viewed as a place where everything will one day return, and they will be released from the burden and shame of being furniture. The promised day when the door to the Golden Land will be opened is also referred to as the "day of rest" for furniture. There, the two of them will gain humanity. Kanon places a huge amount of importance on reaching the Golden Land, wanting to be able to find love as a human there where he cannot in the real world.
In Alliance of the Golden Witch, Shannon told Kanon that she was once brought to the Golden Land for a short time by Beatrice. She described the place to be like a pleasant dream. Rather than a place where wishes are granted, it is a calm world where wishing for anything is unnecessary. Everyone there is equal, and there is no distinction of human, furniture, or witch. Because it is a world characterized by absence, both suffering and happiness are equally absent in this world.
The Golden Land as a meta-world location has two appearances. It is first shown in Banquet of the Golden Witch as a fantastical version of the mansion's entrance hall, filled with golden butterflies. Its most common appearance, as introduced in Alliance of the Golden Witch, is that of a fantastical version of the rose garden, where both the roses and butterflies are colored gold. In addition, the arbor has a different, more ornate design with an open structure.
Real World Interpretations
Going by the accounts of those who have solved the epitaph, the "Golden Land" simply refers to the hidden underground VIP room in which the 10 tons of gold and the incendiary device connected to the 900 tons of explosives are stored. Written on the door to the VIP room is the line from the epitaph—On the tenth twilight, the journey shall end, and you shall reach the capital where the gold dwells.
The fantastical accounts of the Golden Land can be interpreted in multiple ways. In the Twilight of the Golden Witch manga, Erika declares to Battler during their duel that the Golden Land is actually the land of the dead. This accounts for the majority of the portrayals and accounts of the Golden Land in the story. However, the Golden Land in Requiem of the Golden Witch was not introduced as a place after death and may be instead interpreted as Yasuda's personal imaginary world. It is explained in the manga arc Confession of The Golden Witch that as Yasuda's suffering began to intensify, her perception of the Golden Land warped and became synonymous with her ideal afterlife—prompting her to plan the mass murder-suicide to drag everyone there with her. This idea is further augmented in later chapters of the Twilight of the Golden Witch manga after Ange's arrival in the Golden Land; particularly in Chapter 25 (Cage of Constraints).
It also bears some significance that the form in which the Golden Land is imagined to be differs between characters, possibly reflecting the differences in their ideal worlds.
Banquet of the Golden Witch
Following Battler's acknowledgment of Beatrice while in the darkness created by Beatrice's denial of witches in red, the two reach the Golden Land, shown here as a fantastical version of the mansion's entrance hall. There they are welcomed by all of the Ushiromiya family household as well as the fantasy characters, who mingle freely with each other as equals. Even Natsuhi and Eva are uncharacteristically commiserating with each other over the fact that their children are romantically involved with servants.
Battler and Beatrice are taken to the balcony of the entrance hall n order to sign the invitation to the Golden Land, which must be maintained by the acknowledgment of all present in it. The document in question involves the acknowledgment that Beatrice is a witch. Ange breaks into the Golden Land in the nick of time, exposing Beatrice's trick and preventing Battler from signing it.
Alliance of the Golden Witch
In this arc, Beatrice shuts herself up in the Golden Land with Maria after deciding to abandon the gameboard due to Battler's inability to remember his sin. From this point forward, the Golden Land is portrayed in its rose garden form. Ange later arrives at the Golden Land in order to force Beatrice to return to the game. She brings up the fact that Beatrice cannot truly revive Sakutarou here and revives him herself in front of Maria. In doing this, she gets Maria to leave the Golden Land, causing it to collapse due to the requirement that it must be supported by at least two people.
During the Tea Party, Battler reaches again the Golden Land at the end of the second day, and there carries out his final battle with Beatrice. Unlike on other occasions, the Golden Land is colored with a red glow during this battle, and the roses are also red.
End of the Golden Witch
Following Beatrice's defeat in the fourth game, Battler spends time with her doll-like remaining self in the Golden Land, and there attempts to contemplate her moves and motives. He initially boycotts the fifth game due to its takeover by Bernkastel and Lambdadelta by spending time here but eventually decides to return to it in order to take it back from them.
During a break following the first twilight, Battler returns to the Golden Land, where he and Virgilia have a conversation with Dlanor. The three of them discuss many topics, such as the nature of magic, the voyager witches' motives, Knox's decalogue, and the relationship between author and reader in mystery novels. The second part of this conversation is recalled during the ???.
Requiem of the Golden Witch
During the fifth chapter of Clair's story, Shannon is brought to the Golden Land by Yasuda, who has now become Beatrice (depicted in Clair's dress). The place, however, is referred to as a Golden Paradise instead. Beatrice invites Shannon to spend eternity with her in this place, where she can be released from all the burdens of being a servant. Shannon, however, refuses her invitation as she has found love in the real world.
Shannon revisits the Golden Paradise several times over the course of the next few years, and there Beatrice and Gaap try to comfort her regarding Battler's abandonment of his promise to return. In 1983, Beatrice and Shannon admit that their rationalization of his forgetting was a mistake, and Beatrice accepts the bud of Shannon's love in her place, telling her to instead find love with someone else. She also changes her form to that of Battler's ideal woman and gives Shannon a younger "brother" servant Kanon.
After the portrait of the witch and epitaph are put up in 1984, Beatrice decides to rename her own world the "Golden Land" in accordance with the words on it. She also ends up befriending Maria, and the two of them spend time together in the Golden Land naming the various fantasy characters.
Twilight of the Golden Witch
In the final arc, the Golden Land serves as the final refuge of the Ushiromiya family from the onslaught of goat men created by the interpretations of people in the future. Erika lays siege to the Golden Land with the Library Fleet in an attempt to seize Beatrice's gameboard for the City of Books. The members of the Golden Land attempt to stall for time by enacting a fabricated argument among each other, but are eventually exposed by Erika. Following this, she and the goats wage an all out war against the Ushiromiya family and fantasy characters, where the Ushiromiya family defends themselves from attacks on their character interpretations by the goats. The battle eventually ends with Erika's victory and the destruction of the Golden Land and everything in it. During the final battle against Bernkastel, ANGE-Beatrice is able to resurrect everyone. After the defeat of the voyager witch, the Golden Land is restored within her.
- Compilation of real-life Umineko Locations of Umineko backgrounds
- Berrick Hall on the Yokohama Official Visitor's Guide
- Keisei Rose Garden official website