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The Crystal of Knowledge.

"It appears to be some kind of computer hard-drive."
--Dr Groll, Instinct

The Crystal of Knowledge is a five-sided Kryptonian crystal that can be used to create the Fortress of Solitude. The crystal contains all the knowledge of the planet Krypton and all the knowledge of the universe gathered by Kryptonians.

Physical Appearance

The Crystal of Knowledge was made up of three component crystals:

  • Crystal of Fire: Many centuries ago, someone came from Krypton to Earth and hid this crystal inside a relic somewhere in Egypt. While on Earth, this stone was safely contained within an Egyptian tablet, and as such, it served as a vessel for the stone to abide inside. While being fused with the other two stones, it emitted a yellow light.
  • Crystal of Water: Many centuries ago, a Kryptonian came to Earth and hid this crystal inside a statue somewhere in Honduras, Central America. While on Earth, this stone was safely contained within a Mayan rain god statue, and as such, it served as a vessel for the stone to abide inside. While being fused with the other two stones, it emitted a blue light.
  • Crystal of Air: Many centuries ago, a Kryptonian came to Earth and hid this crystal inside a statue somewhere in Shanghai, East China. While on Earth, this stone was safely contained within a horse statue, and as such, it served as a vessel for the stone to abide inside. While being fused with the other two stones, it emitted a red light.

Powers and Abilities

The three stones of power as the Crystal of Knowledge, can transform into the Fortress of Solitude. Clark Kent was able to do this twice after throwing it into the snow in the Arctic Circle. (Arrival, Abyss)

The crystal is a Kryptonian computer hard drive which contains the knowledge of the universe, houses the artificial intelligence of Jor-El, and has the ability to transport people to the Phantom Zone. (Instinct, Bloodline)

Early History

Hundreds of years ago, the three Stones of Power: The Crystal of Fire, the Crystal of Water, and the Crystal of Air were brought to Earth.[1]

These three relics were hidden around Earth by an ancestor of Kal-El, who hid them in Egypt, Central America, and East China.[2] A map was also left behind to the Crystal of Air.[3] The legend on Earth was that, when united, the stones would point the way to a treasury of knowledge that put the Library of Alexandria to shame.[4]

Important figures in history have searched for the three stones, including Countess Margaret Isobel Thoreaux and Duchess Gertrude.[5] Greed had driven others to hunt the stones, but if humans united them before the destined Kryptonian, they would not be able to withstand the temptation and drive the world to famine, war, and Earth's ultimate destruction. (Sacred)

Season Four

The crystal being created.

Genevieve Teague, a descendant of Duchess Gertrude, continued Gertrude's search for the stones along with her son Jason Teague.

Lionel Luthor, and later his son Lex Luthor, also used their vast resources to find the stones. Lionel found a brilliant mathematician, Edgar Cole, who was able to translate the Kryptonian glyphs on each crystal as the symbols for "fire," "air," and "water."

Jor-El sent Clark Kent, brainwashed as Kal-El, to retrieve them. According to Jor-El, Clark was the destined Kryptonian who was meant to have the Crystal of Knowledge.

Lex found the Crystal of Fire in Egypt in a statue; it was later stolen by Kal-El, who then placed it on an altar in a hidden chamber in the Kawatche Caves in Smallville.

The Crystal of Water was found by Lionel Luthor in Honduras in a Mayan statue. Edgar was able to get the stone and give it to Dr. Bridgette Crosby, Dr. Virgil Swann's assistant.

The Crystal of Air was located in Shanghai, East China, and was found by Countess Isobel, who was possessing the body of her descendant Lana Lang. Isobel used the stone to kill Genevieve. With human blood on the Crystal of Air, it caused a chain reaction that sent another meteor shower to Earth.

Clark finally found the other two stones and combined them with the Crystal of Fire to form one crystal, which transported Clark to the Arctic Circle.

Season Five

Once in the Arctic, Clark threw the Crystal of Knowledge into the open fields of snow. As the crystal melted into the ice, it grew into a huge, crystalline building: The Fortress of Solitude.

Like the Crystal of Knowledge, the Fortress of Solitude is a storehouse for all the knowledge in the universe gathered by Kryptonians, including that of their long-dead home planet, Krypton. Perhaps for this reason, the Zoners General Zod and Baern both referred to the Fortress as the "Fortress of Knowledge."

Season Eight

Crystal of Knowledge.

Three years later, Lex placed the Orb into the center console of the Fortress, causing it to collapse back into the Crystal of Knowledge. Four weeks later, a crystal was found near the excavation site by a LuthorCorp team looking for Lex. It looked very similar to the former Crystal of Knowledge, although a deeper shade of blue( the crystal may be a darker blue color because the crystal seemed somewhat powered down or maybe it only exhibits the shining crystal bearing when first activated, as shown in Commencement). Tess Mercer initially had the crystal in her possession, and had a team of experts, led by Dr. Edward Groll, research the crystal. They found its alien origins and attempted to unlock it, causing it to send a beacon into space. Tess then went to Chloe Sullivan to ask her to unlock the crystal, referring to it as a "supercomputer." Tess later showed the crystal to Clark, who was shocked to see it. Clark later told Chloe that he needed to get the crystal to re-build the Fortress so that he can speak with Jor-El again and cure Chloe of Brainiac's infection. When Chloe went to Tess, she told her that it had been stolen from her. The person who stole it later e-mailed Tess, telling her that she wasn't ready.

Later, the crystal was returned to Clark. The crystal started glowing and sent Clark Kent and Lois Lane to the Phantom Zone. Chloe later found the crystal on the floor and put it in her purse. Tess walked in seconds later, saying that she had gotten a report of an energy surge, and asked Chloe about the Crystal; Chloe denied seeing it. Chloe later asked Oliver Queen to steal the crystal's generator from Tess. After he had done that, Chloe put the crystal in the generator and used her Brainiac powers to reverse the effects of the crystal and bring Clark back along with Kara. Clark later used the crystal to re-create the Fortress to save Chloe from Brainiac.


In the Comics

Fortress crystal01.jpg

Superman exiles himself from Earth for a brief period of time and meets a being known only as the Cleric. This being, knowing full well that Superman is the Last Son of Krypton, gives him a crystal, which was clear in dimension and was called the Eradicator, which housed a vast amount of information and data gathered by Kryptonians. When Superman returned to Earth, he uses it to construct and build up the Fortress of Solitude.


  1. Jor-El explains this to Clark in Sacred.
  2. Sacred
  3. As seen in Run
  4. Lex tells Lionel this in Crusade.
  5. As seen in Spell and Sacred

See also

Kryptonian artifacts in Smallville
Major Stones of Power (Crystal of Fire, Crystal of Air, Crystal of Water) • Book of RaoOrb
Fortress Crystal of KnowledgeFortress of Solitude (console, dagger)
Ships Kal-El's shipBlack Ship (Black box) • Kara's ship
Kawatche Kawatche CavesMemory pendantAltarKeyPalak
Other Phantom Zone crystalBlack crystalBlue crystalCrystal of ElDax-Ur's shieldMirror box