Whale Oil

Whale oil is an oil obtained from the blubber of whales. It has a variety of different uses. The most common ones are fuel for oil lamps and soap. However, whale soap is used mostly by poorer people and industries as it has an unpleasant smell.

The best whale oil comes from Tarra. Thousands of years of whaling and producing whale oil made the Tarranoi experts in the craft
— A merchant


Material Characteristics

It has a low viscosity and is clear. Its colour usually varies from a bright honey yellow to a dark brown. One of the main factors which affect the colour is the condition of the blubber from which it was extracted. After hydrogenation it turns into a solid state changing its colour and smell.

Origin & Source

Whale oil is obtained by cutting out pieces of blubber from a whale and then boiling it. In case of whales caught close to the shore or beached the process is done on land. When the whailing ship is further from land the oil is obtained onboard. For that purpose, every whaling ship is equipped with a furnace. Later the whale's carcass is discarded into the sea.

History & Usage


Whale oil has been an essential resource for centuries. The abundance of whales in the seas has guaranteed a price which is reasonable for both the sellers and the buyers.

Whaling and whale oil are the foundations of our culture. Everything we built had a singular purpose, to sustain the whaling industry. Whale oil flows through the veins of every Tarranoi
— A Tarranoi writer

Everyday use

As electricity is still a new thing, many houses and services don't have access to it. Instead, they are still using traditional oil lamps. In many regions, these lamps are fueled with whale oil. In all such lamps oil is added to a tank. The lamp burns the oil to maintain the flame. Older lamps just had a wick dipped in oil, while the modern ones have a knob to regulate the amount of fuel used.

Industrial Use

In industry whale oil is used as a lubricant to reduce friction in machinery. Additionally, in recent years whale soap has started to be introduced to factories as part of campaigns to increase hygiene and fight the Factory Workers' Disease.

Manufacturing & Products

One of the most common products made with whale oil is soap. In order to make it, the oil is mixed with lye water. The mixture is stirred until it reaches the consistency of soft butter or yoghurt. Then it is put into molds and left for 24 hours. In the last stage the bars of soap are out of the molds and are left for about 3 weeks to cure. During that time the water used in production evaporates.


Trade & Market

Whale oil is one of the most common products in almost all of Veneficia. Everywhere you go you can find a merchant selling it. However, it doesn't mean that every litre of oil is the same. Tarran whale oil is considered the best. Tarranoi have a centuries-long tradition of whaling and producing whale oil. It is sold for hundreds or even thousands as far as the city of Roshova, the capital of the Tsardom of Levna.


Whale oil is stored and transported in wooden barrels. Usually, a single barrel can hold about 150 litres of oil. It is always stored in liquid form, but there are people trying to find alternatives. Some scientists are experimenting with heating the oil in presence of hydrogen to get it into a solid state.

Strong, fishy
Bitter, nutty
Bright honey yellow to dark brown
Common State
Related Locations
Related Species

Related Reading

Geographic Location | May 31, 2021
Ethnicity | Jul 22, 2021

A coastal culture where whaling plays an important role

Factory Workers' Disease
Condition | Jul 2, 2021

A condition common among people working with coal

Cover image: Veneficia cover by julianuc


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Eternal Sage AmélieIS
Amélie I. S. Debruyne
22 Jul, 2021 17:48

Ver nice article :D I like the different use the oil has and the links with your world's culture.

To see what I am up to: SC list of articles and goals.
22 Jul, 2021 17:49

Thank you

Check out the worlds of Solis Empire, Magic Earth, Ithir,Vyraj and Terra Nova
26 Jul, 2021 19:18

I love this, it's beautifully written with so much detail. Amazing article :D

You should check out the The 5 Shudake, if you want of course.