One of three demons in the service of Satanachia, commander of the
first legion of Hell.
"The Destroyer", from a Hebrew word meaning "destruction." An
angel of hell known as Sovereign of the Bottomless Pit or King of
Demons and is Chief of the demons of the seventh hierarchy.
Abaddon is the name given by St. John in the Apocalypse to the
king of the grasshoppers. In greek, Abaddon is known as Apollyon
(Revelations, ix, 11).
An Arabic demon said to be the lord of slaves and slavery. His
name is derived from the Arabic word 'Abd', meaning 'slave'.
According to the Enochian tradition, Abduxuel is one of the
demonic rulers of the lunar mansions.
A Grand Duke of Hades, he commands sixty of the infernal legions.
He is depicted in the form of a handsome knight, bearing lance,
standard, or sceptre. He is a demon of the superior order, and
responds readily to questions concerning war. He can foretell the
future, and instructs leaders how to make themselves respected by
the soldiers. Also called Abigar.
The Basilidian sect of the Gnostics of the second century claimed
Abraxas as their supreme god, and said that Jesus Christ was only
a phantom sent to earth by him. They believed that his name
contained great mysteries, as it was composed of the seven Greek
letters which form the number 365, which is also the number of
days in a year. Abraxas, they thought, had under his command 365
gods, to whom they attributed 365 virtues, one for each day. The
older mythologists placed him among the number of Egyptian gods,
and demonologists have described him as a demon, with the head of
a rooster, a huge belly, a knotted tail and serpents instead of
legs. He is represented on ancient amulets, with a whip in his
hand. It is from his name that the mystic word, Abracadabra, is
taken. Also called Abrasax or Abracax.
The Babylonian god of the storm. Also called Adad.
Johann Weyer, a sixteenth century demonologist and pupil and
friend of the famous magus Cornelius Agrippa, places Adramelech
among the chieftains of hell in his book Pseudomonarchia Daemonum
(an attempt to provide a complete hierarchy of infernal spirits).
According to this account, Adramelech was the Grand Chancellor of
the infernal empire, and in this role, presided over the Devils'
general council. He was also in charge of the sovereign's
wardrobe. He often shows himself in the guise of a mule and
sometimes in that of a peacock. In MacGregor Mather's Kabbalah
Denudata, Adramelech is listed among the ten archdemons who were
under the supreme command of Sammael, the 'venom of God.'
According to that hierarchy, Adramelech was the eighth of the ten
evil Sephiroth. He is thus the counterpart or negation of the
eighth divine Sephiroth Hod, who is 'majesty and glory.' Not much
is known of Adramalech's origins. The Old Testament contains two
incidents in which the name of Adramelech occurs. The first one
narrates how the Assyrian King Sennacherib, returning from a
disastrous expedition against the Israelite King, Hezekiah, was
murdered by his two sons, Adramalech and Sharezer, as he was
worshipping in the temple of his idol, Nisrach. The other version
makes Adramelech a Samarian deity, a sun god worshipped by the
Sepharvites, who burned their children as sacrificial offerings to
him. It is possible that this Samarian deity was the origin of the
In the Enochian tradition, a demon of the mansions of the moon.
One of the six classes of demons identified by medieval
theologians. They roam through the air but remain close to human
beings. They can fashion bodies for themselves from thin air.
Moved by passion like men, they can cause natural disturbances.
They can be invoked by sorcerers, and often change shape.
One of seven archangels of the Persians. Has been recorded in
history for at least three thousand years. Aeshma is known as the
'fiend of the wounding spear,' (Yasht xi.15) and is the demon of
wrath and fury. Aeshma was later adopted into the Hebrew mythology
A serpent identified by the Scythians with archfiend Ahriman.
A Grand General of Hell, commander of the second legion and
possessed of the power to discover all secrets. He commands Buer,
Guseyn, and Botis.
Grand Duke of the eastern regions of Hell, commander of thirty-one
legions. The army he protects in battle is indeed fortunate, for
he disperses their enemies, and puts new courage into the hearts
of the cowards who fly before superior numbers. He distributes
place and power, titles and prelacies, teaches all languages, is
an inciter of dancing among terrestrial beings, and has other
equally remarkable powers. He is of the Order of the Virtues.
Shown under the form of a benevolent lord mounted on a crocodile,
and carrying a hawk on his fist. Also Aguares.
A familiar demon which was said to appear only at midday. It took
the shape of a man or a beast, or even enclosed itself in a
talisman, bottle, or magic ring.
The great spirit of evil praised by Giosue Carducci in his hymn to
Satan (`Inno a Satana,' 1863).
Demon of fear.
One of Satan's wives and demoness of whores.
In Assyrian demonology, these are evil vampires.
(The Seizer). Little is known of this ancient Semitic demon unless
it is the same ahazie told of in medical texts, where a man can be
stricken by a disease bearing this name.
A Mayan demon.
In the ancient Persian religion (Zoroastrianism), Ahriman (aka
Arimanius or Angra Mainya) stood high in the ranks of the enemies
who opposed Ohrmazd (aka Ahura Mazda or Oromasdes). Ahriman is
thought to be the first personification of "the Devil" because
Zoroastrians believed in a completely dualistic form of religion.
There are four major stands in Zoroastrianism. The first is that
of Zarathustra (Zoroaster). The second is of the teachings of
Mazdaism, which made Ahriman creator and leader of the daevas. The
third is that of Zeravanism, and the fourth is that of the Magi.
Zarathustra believed that one of the ahuras, Ahura Mazda, was the
supreme god, and chose to be good, while Ahriman chose to be evil.
Therefore, the daevas that opposed the ahuras chose to be evil as
well, and were commonly thought of as demons. All things in
Zoroastrianism have free will and choose whether they want to be
good or evil. In Mazdaist traditions, in the beginning there were
two spirits, Ohrmazd and Ahriman. These two spirits were separated
by a void. Ohrmazd was thought to be characterized by goodness,
light, and he was unlimited in time but not in space. He was free
of all evil, and does not create or willingly tolerate evil.
Ahriman was represented as evil and limited by time because he
knew eventually Ohrmazd would defeat him, and he was also limited
by space. Because there was a void separating the two, in the
beginning, Ohrmazd knew of Ahriman but Ahriman did not know of
Ohrmazd. Ohrmazd wanted to free himself from his own limitation in
space, but he knew that by doing so, he would have to initiate a
struggle with Ahriman, which he did not want to do. In time,
though, Ahriman saw a light across the void and envied and lusted
for it. He then created the evil things of this world (such as the
daevas) to fight against the good things Ohrmazd created. Ohrmazd
offered Ahriman peace if Ahriman would worship the good things
Ohrmazd created, but Ahriman refused, and Ohrmazd showed Ahriman
his inevitable fate. Ahriman was stunned and fell into the void
for a period of time. When he awakened, he engaged in war with
Ohrmazd, which Ohrmazd won and finally destroyed
In the Zeranism tradition, there is one ur-principle called Zurvan,
who is the All. He contains all good and evil, and is also
infinite in time. Zurvan then wishes for a son, and so his wife,
who is actually the female half of his androgynous nature, gives
birth to two sons. One (Ohrmazd) is the product of love and
desire, while the other (Ahriman) is the result of a moment of
doubt. Ahriman is born first and assumes the birth rite. In this
way Ahriman was Ohrmazd's brother, and they each held equal sway
over the world. Ahriman created all the maladies of life, and
prided himself on the feat of having conjured ninety-nine
thousand, nine hundred and ninety-nine diseases to plague the
earth. He also attempted and failed to change the Persian religion
by maiming the divine prophet Zarathustra. He first sent the demon
Buiti to kill Zarathustra, but the prophet chanted aloud the
Ahuna-Vairya, and the demon fled back to Ahriman. Ahriman himself
then 'rushed forth from the regions of the North to lure away the
Prophet from the path of righteousness,' but the prophet resisted
the temptation and affirmed that he would never do the bidding of
Ahriman. For all that Ohrmazd created, Ahriman created either the
evil opposite, or he turned the good to excess:
The author foul of evil, how with shades
From his dire mansion, he deform'd the works
Of Oromazes; turn'd to noxious heat
The solar beam, that foodful Earth might parch,
That streams exhaling might forsake their beds,
Whence pestilence and famine...
If the hand of Oromazes, on precarious life
Shed wealth and pleasure, swift the infernal God
With wild excess, or avarice, blasts the joy.
But yet at last, shall Arimanius fall
Before his might, and evil be no more.'
Later texts refer to Ahura Mazda as having created six (sometimes
seven) Amesha Spenta, or archangels. Angra Mainya also created a
council of six (sometimes seven) archdemons. The archdemons (daevas)
are known as Aka Manah, Indra, Sauru, Taurvi, Zairitsha, and
Naonhaithya (the seventh is Aeshma). Eventually, Ahriman will be
defeated by the coming of a Saoshyant or Saviour. Ancient texts
refer to three great souls who are designated to be Saoshyants.
The third of these will destroy evil and bring forth the reign of
righteousness. The coming is referred to in the Farvardin Yasht,
which says he will be the son of Zarathustra and will be conceived
through a virgin called 'the all-destroying' (Yasht xiii.142;
Vendidad xix.5). He will be assisted by his friends, who are
fiend-smiting, well-thinking, well-speaking, well-doing, and whose
tongues have never uttered a word of falsehood (Yasht xiii.142).
After this, the world will be restored, the dead will arise, and
life and immortality will come. "With the disappearance of evil
from the universe, good will prevail everywhere and for all time;
and the accursed name of Angra Mainya will be forgotten. Ahura
Mazda will be for ever, even as he has been from all eternity" (Yasht
A strong duke, who appears with the body of a handsome man and
three heads, the first like a serpent, the second like a man, with
two stars on the forehead, and the third like a cat. He rides on a
viper, and carries a blazing firebrand with which he spreads
destruction. He imparts much cunning, and gives true answers
concerning private matters.
A little Lithuanian demon who appears in the shape of a black cat
or a black cock. He will give goods and money to those who sell
their souls to him; things he stole from other people. Aitvaras
usually nests behind the stove, and the inhabitants often leave
food and drink for him.
Burmese evil spirits that inhabit trees.
One of the leaders of the angels who, according to the Book of
Enoch, swore allegiance to Samiaza.
In Assyrian demonology, evil spirits. They are demons of
destruction. Alastor A cruel demon, who, according to Johann Weyer,
filled the post of chief executioner to the monarch of Hades. The
conception of him somewhat resembles that of Nemesis. Zoroaster is
said to have called him "The Executioner." He was originally a
mortal, the son of Neleus, king of Pylos. He became a (minor)
demon when he and his brothers were slain by Heracles. Others
confound him with the destroying angel. Evil genies were formerly
called Alastors. Plutarch says that Cicero, who bore a grudge
against Augustus, conceived the plan of committing suicide on the
emperor's hearth, and thus becoming his Alastor.
An Egyptian demon presiding over the tempests, earthquakes,
rainstorms, hailstorms, etc. It is he, also, who sinks ships. When
he appears in visible form he takes the shape of a woman.
In old Scandinavian folklore, a term for a being that is half god,
half dwarf. In later mythology it degrades to a demon that only
causes nightmares and diseases. In Germany it is pronounced as
'alb'. A reference to the word can be found in the Nibelungen
Saga, where the king of the dwarves is called Alberich.
One of three demons serving Fleuretty.
In Sumero-Akkadian religion, one of the names of the evil demon,
Death. He is the offspring and servant of Ereshkigal. His more
familiar name is Namtar (Namtary). In Assyro-Babylonian religion,
Allatu is the goddess of the underworld, consort of Bel, and later
the consort of Nergal.
A Grand Duke of Hell, commander of thirty-six legions. He appears
in the shape of a lion-headed knight mounted on an enormous horse.
His face has a ruddy complexion and burning eyes and he speaks
with much gravity. He is said to give family happiness to those
whom he takes under his protection, and to teach astronomy and
A female demon who is also a succubus and vampire who exhausts men
and drives them to suicide.
An angel or demon, who, according to the Talmud, presides over
Female demons or sorceresses, the mothers of the Huns in ancient
Germany. They took all sorts of shapes, but without changing their
Ancient Babylonian demon, said to owe his parentage to a human
being; he hides himself in caverns and corners, and slinks through
the streets at night. He also lies in wait for the unwary, and at
night enters bed-chambers and terrorizes folk, threatening to
pounce upon them if they shut their eyes.
Also called Amaymon. One of the four spirits who preside over the
four parts of the universe. Amaimon is the governor of the eastern
part, according to the grimoire or magic manual of the Lemegeton
of Solomon, also known as the Little Key.
One of the demons who possessed Sister Jeanne des Anges. Aman was
among the first of the demons whom she managed to expel.
According to the Book of Enoch, one of the leaders of the two
hundred angels who rebelled against God and swore allegiance to
Samiaza. Amduscias A Grand Duke of Hell, commander of twenty-nine
legions. He has the form of a unicorn, but when evoked, appears in
human shape. He gives concerts, at the command of men, where one
hears the sound of all kinds of instruments but can see nothing.
It is said that the trees themselves bend to his voice., and is a
producer of disturbing music.
A marquis of hell and strongest of the demon princes, commander of
forty legions. Depicted as a wolf-headed demon with a serpents
tail, vomiting flame. When in human form, his head resembles that
of a large owl with canine teeth. He knows the past and the
future, and can reconcile friends who have quarreled.
One of the four kings of Hades, of which the eastern part falls to
his share. He is invoked in the morning from nine to twelve and in
the evening from three to six. He has been identified with Amaimon.
Asmodeus is his lieutenant and the first prince of his dominions.
According to an ancient grimoire, Grand President of Hades, and
one of the princes of the infernal monarchy. He appears there
enveloped with flame, but on earth, in human form. He teaches the
secrets of astrology and of the liberal arts, and gives faithful
servants. He reveals to those who possess his favour the hiding
place of treasures guarded by demons. Thirty-six of the infernal
legions are under his command. The fallen angels acknowledge his
orders, and he hopes that at the end of 20,000 years he shall
return to heaven to occupy the seventh throne.
Bearer of ill news. He was worshipped at Sepharvahim, a town of
the Assyrians. He reveals himself in the figure of a quail. His
name, we are told, signified a "good king", and some authorities
declare that this demon was the moon, as Andramalech is the sun.
One of the demons charged with the guardianship of subterranean
treasures, which he carries about from one place to another, to
hide them from men.. It is he who, with his companions Gaziel and
Fecor, shakes the foundations of houses, raises tempests, rings
the bells at midnight, causes spectres to appear, and inspires a
A little known demon, who, during the possession of the nuns of
Louviers, in 1643, was said to have occupied the body of Sister
Barbara of St. Michael.
A Hindu demon.
A Grand Marquis of Hell, commander of thirty legions. Depicted as
an owl head with the body of a winged angel, riding a black wolf
and brandishing a pointed sabre. He teaches those whom he favours
to kill their enemies, masters and servants. He sows discord and
will kill the unwary.
A mighty marquis, appears at first in the shape of a peacock, with
a great noise, but after puts on human shape. He teaches geometry
perfectly and all that belongs to measurements, astronomy
included. He can transform men into the likeness of a bird.
A great duke and earl, appears in the form of a man holding a
serpent in his hand. He returns stolen goods and the thief,
discovers all wickedness and underhand dealing, as also hidden
Demon of the mines, known principally in Germany. On one occasion
he killed with his breath twelve miners who were working in a
silver mine of which he had charge. He was a wicked and terrible
demon, sometimes represented as a large goat, sometimes as a
horse, with an immense neck and frightful eyes.
Apaosa (Apa-urta) is a demon who brings drought and aridity. He
rides on a black, bald horse. Eventually he was defeated by the
god Tistrya. He is equal to the Indian evil spirit Vritra.
"Short Wave". One of two ocean demons who are greatly feared by
Polynesian mariners because they are at the mercy of their immense
power. The other demon is Aremata-Rorua.
"Long Wave". One of two Polynesian ocean demons greatly feared by
mariners because they are at the mercy of their immense power. The
other one is Aremata-Popoa.
Demon of vengeance, according to some demonologists. He is
different from Alastor, and occupies himself only with vengeance
in particular cases where he is employed for that purpose.
A Persian sorcerer who was killed by a thunderbolt (according to
Abdias of Babylon) at the same hour as the martyrdom of St. Simon
and St. Jude. In the account of the possession of the nuns of
Loudun there is a demon Arphaxat, who took possession of the body
of Louise de Pinterville.
Asmodeus seems to be Persian in origin and may be identical to the
demon Aeshma, one of the seven archdemons of Persian mythology.
According to that tradition, he visited heaven every day to
eavesdrop on the angels' conversations. The Latinized version of
his name may be derived from the Hebrew, Ashmedai or Shamad ('to
destroy'), and it is among the Jews that Asmodeus achieved his
highest degree of power. He belongs to the order of the Seraphim,
the highest order of angels, from whence he fell. He is the son of
Naamah and Shamdon. In his female incarnation, Asmodeus is the
spirit of lust and the beautiful sister of Tubal-Cain. Often
portrayed as an ugly man endowed with a pair of large wings, Asmodeus inspires men with such lust that they betray their wives.
This demon appears first in the apocryphal Book of Tobit, which
tells how Asmodeus fell in love with a beautiful young woman and
wanted to possess her. Sarah, the daughter of Raguel, had already
been married to seven men, but the jealous demon had slain each
one of them before the marriage could be consummated, Sarah was so
deeply grieved that she thought of hanging herself, however, she
did not want to bring disgrace and sorrow to her father, who was
in old age. Praying fervently to God, she begged Him to have pity
on her. The Lord heard her prayer and sent the archangel Raphael
to earth to help her new suitor, Tobias, the son of Tobit, to
overcome the demon. Raphael taught the young man to prepare a
charm by burning the heart and liver of the glanos fish, with
incense made from tamarish wood. After the marriage ceremony, the
newlyweds retired to their chambers, and Tobias did as the
archangel had instructed him. When Asmodeus entered the room to
kill the new husband, the odour of the burning incense drove him
away. Asmodeus is best known for his help in building King
This story is told in the Testament of Solomon,
and in a number of other ancient sources on magic and demons. When
the Temple was being built, a demon plagued a boy by taking his
pay and food, and making him sick. This boy was a favourite of
Solomon. When the king heard the complaints, he went into the
temple to pray for a night and a day so that he might gain power
over the demon. The archangel Michael appeared to Solomon and gave
him a magic ring which was inscribed with the powerful pentacle.
This enabled the owner to command all spirits. With the help of
this formidable weapon, the King freed the boy from the demon, and
then proceeded to use the ring to call other demons to help
complete the Temple. According to the Aggadah, a traditional
collection of Hebrew folklore, Asmodeus was the third demon to be
conjured up. Solomon knew that Asmodeus was a particularly brutal
captive. By hurling insults and thrusting the magic ring in his
face, the King forced the demon to reveal the spell which would
protect from the fiend's evil influence. One day the King asked
Asmodeus wherein the greatness of demons lay if their prince could
be kept in bonds like a mortal. Asmodeus replied that if Solomon
would remove the chains and lend him his magic ring, he would
prove his greatness. When he was released, the demon seized
Solomon, flung him out of Jerusalem and set himself up as king.
When Solomon returned, he surrounded himself by other demons and
finally fell prey to their evil influence.
He fell in love with a
woman from the Shumannite tribe. Although there is very little
information concerning this, it seems most likely that this woman
was goaded in her seduction by Lilith, the queen of demons and
equal in power to Asmodeus. For her sake, Solomon built a temple
to Baal, sacrificed to Moloch, and thus fell one of the great wise
men, perhaps the greatest of all magi. During the Middle Ages,
Asmodeus was considered an evil spirit who caused men to be
unfaithful. He plotted against the newly-wed, and wasted the
beauty of virgins. It seems that despite Christianity, Asmodeus
lost none of his evil energies, and he was much dreaded. It took a
figure of truly great power, such as John the Baptist, to help the
tempted man oppose this demon. Sister Elizabeth, one of the
Louviers nuns, was said to have been possessed by Asmodeus. He was
supposedly sent to trouble her by two witches, Father Picard and
Sister Madeleine Bavent. Paul Lucas, a medieval writer and
traveller, describes meeting Asmodeus during one of his journeys
through Egypt. The Courier de L' Egypte reports that at the time
many Egyptians still adored the serpent Asmodeus.
The serpent had
a temple in the desert of Ryanneh. There he was said to cut
himself into pieces, and to reappear immediately afterwards,
healed and whole. The medieval demonologists ranked him high in
the hierarchy of hell, calling him 'a strong and powerful king
disposing of seventy-two legions.' He is described as possessing
three heads: the first one resembling that of a bull, the second
that of a man, and the third that of a ram. He has the tail of a
serpent, the feet of a goose, and fiery breath. Carrying a banner
and a lance, he appears mounted on a dragon. Asmodeus bequeaths
his followers with rings engraved with planetary symbols. He
teaches men the difficult but useful art of becoming invisible, as
well as instructing them in geometry, arithmetic, astronomy, and
the mechanical sciences. He has vast knowledge concerning buried
treasures, and can be forced to reveal their site with the help of
appropriate spells and incantations.
Astaroth is the name given to the male, medieval incarnation of
the ancient demon goddess Astoreth, as the Hebrews call her, or
Astarte as she was known to the Phoenicians. He was said to appear
in the guise of an ugly angel, riding on a dragon and holding a
viper in his left hand. Johann Weyer's hierarchy describes
Astaroth as a very powerful grand duke in hell, where he held the
office of great treasurer and commanded forty legions. In the
hierarchy of the fallen angels he ranks as the 'prince of
thrones.' Always desirous to sit idle and be at ease, he is a
great lover of sloth. For that reason he can best be frustrated by
appealing to St. Bartholomew for help. Further medieval sources
specify that he resides in the Occident, that he procures the
friendship of the great lords, and that he has to be invoked on
Wednesdays between the tenth and the eleventh hours of the night.
When the demon appears, it is wise not to approach too closely
because of the infernal stench emanating from him, although one
can protect oneself from the fetid odour by holding a magic ring
under one's nose. Astaroth willingly answers questions concerning
the past and the future. He is willing to make discourse on great
secrets, and he loves to talk about the Creation and the Fall, or
the faults of the angels. In his conversations, he stresses most
emphatically that he himself has been punished unjustly, and that
some day he will once again take his rightful place among the
heavenly angels. He is also said to be a very good teacher of the
liberal arts and or most sciences.
The Persian demon of death whom no human escapes. Together with
Aesma Daeva he chases and tries to catch the souls of the deceased
with a noose when they rise to heaven.
"Demon princes". A group of Jain (one of the great classical
religions of India) gods associated with rain and thunder.
A Prince of Hell, commander of thirty-six legions, foreseer of the
future. Depicted as a standing vulture or eagle.
In Armenian mythology, Ays is an evil demon and the
personification of the wind. In this form he is able to enter the
body of a human being, who will either go mad or become a demon
himself. Ays belongs to the Dev, a group of immortal spirits.
One of the angels who revolted against God. The rabbis say that he
is chained on sharp stones in an obscure part of the desert,
awaiting the last judgement.
According to Johann Weyer, Azazel is a demon of the second order
and the principal standard bearer of the infernal armies. Azazel
is the chief of the Se'irim, or goat-demons, who haunted the
desert and to whom most primitive Semitic (most likely non-Hebrew)
tribes offered sacrifices. The Old Testament states that Jeroboam
appointed priests for the Se'irim. But Josiah destroyed the places
of their worship, as the practices accompanying this worship
involved copulation of women with goats.
The Se'irim, or hairy
demons as the word itself means, are mentioned in Leviticus 17:7
and 2 Chronicles 11:15 as "goat-demons". Isaiah 34:14 says that
the "goat-demons" greet each other among the ruins of Edom along
with Lilith and other wild beasts. The name 'Azazel' may be
derived from 'azaz' and 'el' meaning 'strong one of God.' It is
thought that Azazel may have been derived from the Canaanite god,
'Asiz, who caused the sun to burn strongly. It has also been
theorized that he has been influenced by the Egyptian god, Seth.
In Leviticus 16:8 we are told that the Lord ordered his high
priest, Aaron, to 'place lots upon the two goats, one marked for
the Lord and the other marked for Azazel' on the Jewish Day of
Atonement. The goat designated by lot for the Lord is to be used
as a sin offering, while the goat designated for Azazel "shall be
left standing alive before the Lord, to make expiation with it and
to send it off to the wilderness for Azazel." (Lev 16:10) Aaron
was to "lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat and
confess over it all the iniquities and transgressions of the
Israelites, whatever their sins, putting them on the head of the
goat; and it shall be sent off to the wilderness through a
designated an. Thus the goat shall carry on it all their
iniquities to an inaccessible region; and the goat shall be set
free in the wilderness." (Lev 16:21-22)
Leviticus also says that
"He who set the Azazel-goat free shall wash his clothes and bathe
his body in water; after that he may reenter the camp." (16:26)
From this passage in Leviticus, it would seem that Azazel is
conceived of as a personal being, as lots were drawn for the Lord
and for him. Also, Leviticus mentions that Azazel lives in the
wilderness, as do the Se'irim. Because of this ritual, Azazel is
known as the "scapegoat." The goat that is sent to Azazel is not
as a sacrifice, but as a symbol that there is no longer any
unexpiated guilt. Both the goat and the man who leads away the
goat are unclean, and the only way the man can reenter the camp is
by washing his clothes and bathing.
In the Book of Enoch, Azazel
is the leader of the horde of the Watchers - the sleepless angels.
In the time preceding the flood, these angels saw that 'the
children of men had multiplied and that beautiful and comely
daughters were born unto them.' Descending to earth, the Watchers
mingled with the women and began 'to defile themselves with them.'
While the angels taught their wives all manners of enchantments
and charms, as well as the science of root cutting and botany;
Azazel taught the art of warfare, and the making of swords and
He also taught his wives how to use cosmetics, 'the art
of deception by ornamenting their bodies,' and revealed the
secrets of witchcraft. But finally he was brought to the Lord's
command, bound hand and foot by the archangel Raphael, and chained
to a jagged rock. There he is to abide in utter darkness until the
Day of Judgement, when he will be cast into the fire to be
consumed forever. In the Apocalypse of Abraham, Azazel is
portrayed as an unclean bird which came down upon the sacrifice
which Abraham prepared.
This is in reference to Genesis 15:11
"Birds of prey came down upon the carcasses, and Abram drove them
away." "And the unclean bird spoke to me and said, 'What are you
doing, Abraham, on the holy heights, where no one eats of drinks,
nor is there upon them food for men. But these all will be
consumed by fire and ascend to the height, they will destroy you.'
And it came to pass when I saw the bird speaking I said this to
the angel: 'What is this, my lord?' And he said, 'This is
disgrace, this is Azazel!' And he said to him, 'Shame on you
Azazel! For Abraham's portion is in heaven, and yours is on earth,
for you have selected here, (and) become enamored of the dwelling
place of your blemish. Therefore the Eternal Ruler, the Mighty
One, has given you a dwelling on earth. Through you the all-evil
spirit (is) a liar, and through you (are) wrath and trials on the
generations of men who live impiously." - Apocalypse of Abraham
The Apocalypse of Abraham also associates Azazel with Hell.
Abraham says to him "May you be the firebrand of the furnace of
the earth! Go, Azazel, into the untrodden parts of the earth. For
your heritage is over those who are with you" (14:5-6) There is
also the idea that God's heritage (the created world) is largely
under the dominion of evil. It is "shared with Azazel" (20:5)
Azazel is also identified with the serpent which tempted Eve. His
form is described as a dragon with "hands and feet like a man's,
on his back six wings on the right and six on the left." (23:7)
Finally, the Apocalypse of Abraham says that the wicked will
"putrefy in the belly of the crafty worm Azazel, and be burned by
the fire of Azazel's tongue." (31:5) Here again, there is another
reference to Azazel as being Hell.
A storm demon from Iranian mythology. He steals cattle and brings
harm to humans. It is a snake-like monster with three heads and
six eyes who also personifies the Babylonian oppression of Iran.
The monster will be captured by the warrior god Thraetaona and
placed on the mountain top Dermawend. In a final revival of evil,
it will escape its prison, but at the end of time (fraso-kereti)
it will die in the river of fire Ayohsust.
Grand Duke of Hell, general of the infernal armies and commander
of sixty-six legions. He is depicted as a creature with three
heads - a cat, a crowned man and a toad. His pudgy torso ends in a
spider's legs. Those who invoke him are made alert and cunning and
are taught the means of making themselves invisible when
Demon of the second order. Chief Secretary and Archivist of Hell,
master of the Infernal Alliance. He is depicted as a pontiff
seated among princes of the infernal regions. Originally he was
the Phoenician (Canaanite) god of covenants. He was one of the
demons who possessed an Ursuline nun at Aix-en-Provence in 1610.
Captain of the guard and sentinels of Hell.
A demon known as the Keeper of Graves.
One of the names given to Satan, when he appeared in the guise of
a great he-goat, for the purpose of love intercourse with the
A demon cited in the
The Grand Grimoire
Goetia) and head of the infernal
powers. It is with him that Johann Weyer commenced his inventory
of the famous Pseudomonarchia Daemonum. He alluded to Bael as the
first monarch of hell, and said that his estates are situated on
the eastern regions thereof. He had three heads, that of a crab, a
cat, and a man. Sixty-six legions obey him.
Among the seventy-two spirits of the brazen vessel, as enumerated
in the Lesser Key of Solomon, there is a demon called Balam. He
features as number fifteen in what some authors refer to as 'the
false monarchy of demons.' Judging by the various descriptions of
Balam, he is identical with several other demons whose names are
given by writers of the same period as Balan, Balaam, and Balemm.
He is described as being a great and terrible king in hell,
commanding forty legions of infernal soldiers. He appears at times
with three heads: the middle one is that of a man, while the
others are those of animals, usually a bull and a ram.
Furthermore, Balam is equipped with a serpent's tail and eyes so
fierce that they spit forth fire and flames. Usually, though,
Balam is said to appear as a naked monster riding on a bear. He
wears a royal crown, surmounting two long and upward horns, and a
pair of extremely hairy ears stick out at right angles from his
skull. The sharp, goat-like facial features are enhanced by a
long, scraggly beard. His limbs terminate in unnaturally long
fingers and toes, capped by sharp-pointed nails that look as
deadly as the claws of the goshawk perching on his right wrist.
Balam, once an angel of the Order of Dominations, is quite easily
invoked and relatively harmless to deal with. Like many of his
species, he answers questions concerning past, present and future
events, and he is willing to reveal the secret of invisibility. He
is an excellent teacher of the subtle art of cunning, and he
imparts wit and finesse to whoever queries him on these matters.
A demon of delusion.
An ancient Indian demon, king of the Daityas. He ruled the sky and
the earth, but this power was wrested from him by Vishnu in the
avatara of Vamana, the dwarf. Since then he rules the underworld.
One of the demons supposed to have possessed Nicole Aubry of Laon,
France, in the year 1566. He went to dine with her husband under
the pretext of freeing her from demon possession, which he did not
accomplish. It was observed that at supper he did not drink, which
showed that demons are averse to water.
Ancient Semitic demon said to sit on the roofs of houses and leap
on the inhabitants. People so afflicted were called d'baregara.
According to the medieval hierarchies he was the demon of
A great count and duke, who appears when the sun is in Sagittarius
with four noble kings and three companies of troops; he gives
instructions in all the sciences, reveals treasures concealed by
enchantment, knows the past and future, reconciles friends and
those in power, and is of the Order of the Virtues. He also
understands the songs of birds and the language of other animals
Demon in whose keeping was the secret of the Philosopher's Stone.
One of the three demons in the service of Fleuretty. Duke of the
Infernal Regions. He has the appearance of a robust man but his
body ends in a serpent's tail. He bestrides a steed of livid
colour. He is well versed in the virtues of herbs and precious
stones. He is able to transport men from one place to another with
wondrous speed. He commands thirty legions. Also known as Marthin.
Named in the grimoire of Honorius as that of a powerful demon whom
it addresses as monarch of the western parts of the Infernal
Regions. To him the following invocation is addressed; "O King
Bayemon, most mighty, who reigneth towards the western parts, I
call upon thee and invoke thy name in the name of the Divinity. I
command thee in the name of the Most High to present thyself
before this circle, thee and the other spirits who are thy
subjects, in the name of Passiel and Rosus, for the purpose of
replying to all that which I demand of thee. If thou dost not come
I will torment thee with a sword of heavenly fire, I will augment
thy pains and burn thee. Obey, King Bayemon." Although ascribed to
Pope Honorius III, supported by what is claimed as a Papal Bull
authorizing ordained priests to invoke spirits and control demons,
this grimoire is denounced by Catholic writers as a forgery. The
grimoire became popular among seventeenth-century occult
The demon who teaches the secret of the Philosopher's Stone. He is
but little known. The demon barbu is not to be confused with
Barbatos, said to be a Duke in Hades, although not a philosopher;
nor with Barbas, who is interested in mechanics. It is said that
the bearded demon is so called on account of his remarkable beard.
A demon alluded to in the ancient grimoire The Key of Solomon as
having power over the winds and the tempests. He makes hail,
thunder and rain.
The scriptures call Beelzebub the 'prince of demons,' and St.
Matthew reports that the Pharisees accused Jesus of casting out
demons in his name: 'It is only by Beelzebub, the prince of
demons, that this man casts out demons' Matthew 9:34 He was an
idol of the Canaanites, and his best known shrine was in the
Philistine city of Ekron. When King Ahaziah of Israel consulted
his oracle in Ekron, he brought upon himself the wrath of the
prophet Elijah. Baal or Bel means 'lord,' and was a title given to
a great number of deities. Beelzebub means 'lord of the flies;'
though it is not known if this is a reference to the practice of
divination by the flight of flies, or to the idol's power of
delivering men from flies which ruined their crops.
It may possibly refer
to the fact that the god's statue, dripping with sacrificial
blood, must have attracted large numbers of flies. Most medieval
demonologists consider him as the sovereign ruler of the infernal
empire. One book called In Zodiaco Vitae, describes him as being
of prodigious height, sitting on a giant throne. A band of fire
encircles his forehead, his chest is swollen, his face puffed up;
while sparkling eyes and lifted eyebrows enhance his menacing air.
He has cavernous nostrils and two big horns sprout from his head;
while large bat wings adorn his back. He has ducks' feet, a lion's
tail and is covered from head to foot with thick black hair.
According to the apocryphal Gospel of Nicodemus, Beelzebub was not
at first the most powerful potentate of hell. Satan was the
'prince and captain of death.'
crucifixion, Satan conversed with Beelzebub at the gates of hell,
bragging that he was about to bring Jesus down to his infernal
abode. He rejoiced as Jesus was an enemy who had deprived him of
many a victim. Beelzebub begged his master not to attempt this
dangerous feat because 'the very power of His name disturbed him
and him impious company.' "Then Hell, receiving Satan the prince,
with sore reproach said unto him: O prince of perdition and chief
of destruction, Beelzebub, the scorn of the angels and spitting of
the righteous why wouldest thou do this? Thou wouldest crucify the
King of glory and at his decease didst promise us great spoils of
his death: like a fool thou knewest not what thou didst. For
behold now, this Jesus putteth to flight by the brightness of his
majesty all the darkness of death, and hath broken the strong
depths of the prisons, and let out the prisoners and loosed them
that were bound. And all that were sighing in our torments do
rejoice against us, and at their prayers our dominions are
vanquished and our realms conquered, and now no nation of men
feareth us any more. And beside this, the dead which were never
wont to be proud triumph over us, and the captives which never
could be joyful do threaten us. O prince Satan, father of all the
wicked and ungodly and renegades wherefore wouldest thou do this?
They that from the beginning until now have despaired of life and
salvation - now is none of their wonted roarings heard, neither
doth any groan from them sound in our ears, nor is there any sign
of tears upon the face of any of them. O prince Satan, holder of
the keys of hell, those thy riches which thou hadst gained by the
tree of transgression and the losing of paradise, thou hast lost
by the tree of the cross, and all thy gladness hath perished. When
thou didst hang up Christ Jesus the King of glory thou wroughtest
against thyself and against me. Henceforth thou shalt know what
eternal torments and infinite pains thou art to suffer in my
keeping for ever. O prince Satan, author of death and head of all
pride, thou oughtest first to have sought out matter of evil in
this Jesus: Wherefore didst thou adventure without cause to
crucify him unjustly against whom thou foundest no blame, and to
bring into our realm the innocent and righteous one, and to lose
the guilty and the ungodly and unrighteous of the whole world? And
when Hell had spoken thus unto Satan the prince, then said the
King of glory unto Hell: Satan the prince shall be in thy power
unto all ages in the stead of Adam and his children, even those
that are my righteous ones" - Gospel of Nicodemus VII (XXIII)
As they were discussing
the matter, a thunderous voice sounding like rushing winds
proclaimed: 'Lift up your gates, O ye princes, and the King of
Glory shall come in.' Terrified, Beelzebub pushed Satan away from
the mouth of hell, and told him indignantly to fight Jesus by
himself if he yearned for a divine conquest so much. Beelzebub
then slammed the gates shut, and commanded the rest of the demons
to bar the way with all the strength they could muster. But
inside, the souls had heard Christ's booming voice and rushed
forward, jostling the fiends,desperately trying to speak to the
Saviour. Fear lent the demons enough strength to push the souls
back and to barricade the gates even more tightly, but nothing
could bar Jesus' way. He trampled over Satan, deprived Beelzebub
of his powers, and with a single word, snapped the chains of the
imprisoned souls. All the saints held captive in hell were
They joined hands and
flew up to heaven. As Jesus was about to take leave of himself, he
turned to Beelzebub and said: 'Satan the prince shall be in thy
power unto all ages in the stead of Adam and his children, even
those that are my righteous ones.' - Gospel of Nicodemus VII
(XXIII) In medieval times Beelzebub also had great power. It was
very difficult to get rid of him once the conjured demon had
appeared. The nineteenth century scholar, MacGregor Mathers,
remarked that: 'the invocation to make visible the appearance of
such fearful potencies as Amaymon, Egyn, and Beelzebub would
probably result in the death of the exorcist on the spot; such
death presenting the symptoms of one arising from Epilepsy,
Apoplexy, or Strangulation.' One of the spells used to conjure up
A manuscript containing another appeal to Beelzebub is housed in
the British Museum. It says:
'I conjure bind and charge thee by Lucifer
Beelzebub, Sathanas, Jauconill, and by their power,
And by the homage thou owest unto them
And also I charge thee by the triple crown
Of Cerberus' head, by Styx and Phegiton,
By your fellow and private devil Baranter,
That you do torment and punish this disobedient
Demon until you make him come corporally
To my sight and obey my will and
Commandments in whatsoever I shall charge
Or command thee to do. Fiat, Fiat, Fiat.
At witches' sabbaths Beelzebub was lord and master over all the
rites, and it was in his name that Jesus was denied. Eucharist was
given with the seal of Beelzebub imprinted upon the pieces of
bread instead of the symbol of Christ. The witches then chanted:
'Belsabub goity, Belsabub beyty' meaning 'Beelzebub above,
Beelzebub below.' After forming a semicircle around the altar and
lying flat on the ground, they swallowed 'two mouthfuls of an
infernal medicine and brew, of so foul a flavour that they sweated
to swallow it, and so cold it froze them.' Beelzebub then
copulated with all the participants and this triggered the
commencement of a frenzied orgy.
In the seventeenth century,
Beelzebub along with a host of other demons possessed the nun,
Sister Madeleine de Demandoix, of the Ursuline Convent near
Aix-en-Provence. In his power, the wretched nun was compelled to
writhe on the floor exposing her genitals. She also had gruesome
visions of sodomy and cannibalism. Beelzebub was finally
exorcised, never to return to that convent again.
The Apocryphal Book of Enoch gives the following description of
this monster's origins: 'And that day will two monsters be parted,
one monster, a female named Leviathan in order to dwell in the
abyss of the ocean over the fountains of water; and (the other), a
male called Behemoth, which holds his chest in an invisible desert
whose name is Dundayin, east of the garden of Eden.' - 1 Enoch
60:7-8 According to the Islamic tradition, when God created the
earth, he realized that it was not secure. To stabilize it, he
placed under it first an angel, then a huge rock made of ruby,
then a bull with four thousand eyes, ears, nostrils, mouths,
tongues, and feet. But even the bull did not stand firm. So below
it God placed Behemoth, who rested on water which was surrounded
by darkness. Some authors have identified Behemoth with the
Egyptian deity Taueret. She was a hippopotamus goddess with whom
we are acquainted through the writings of the Greek historian,
Herodotus. The most powerful description of Behemoth is found in
the Book of Job (Job 40:15-24):
which I made as I made you;
he eats grass like an ox.
Behold, his strength is in his loins,
and his power in the muscles of his belly.
He makes his tail stiff like a cedar;
the sinews of his thighs are knit together.
His bones are tubes of bronze,
his limbs like bars of iron.
He is the first of the works of God;
let him who made him bring near his sword!
For the mountains yield food for him
where all the wild beast play.
Under the lotus plant he lies,
in the covert of the reeds and in the marsh.
For his shade the lotus tree covers him
the willows of the brook surround him.
Behold, if the river is turbulent he is not frightened;
he is confident though Jordan rushes against his mough.
Can one take him with hooks,
or pierce his nose with a snare?'
The Rabbinical tradition has somewhat alleviated the fear of
Behemoth by prophesying an end for the beast. He is described as
the deadly enemy of Leviathan, and on the Day of Judgement,
'Behemoth will slay, and be slain by a gigantic whale. For his
fate is to furnish the meat for the Messiah's feast, and this food
the Lord will distribute among the faithful.' Behemoth is not
mentioned in the most complete of the many medieval demonic
hierarchies, the Pseudomonarchia Daemonum. Although the author,
Johann Weyer, does talk about the monster in another work called
De Praestigiorum Daemonum. In that book, Weyer speculates that
Behemoth might very well be a representation of the vast powers of
the archfiend Satan himself. But a number of medieval
demonologists do place Behemoth in their infernal hierarchies;
though they mostly describe him as an overweight and rather stupid
demon, whose domains are gluttony and the pleasures of the belly.
They add that in hell his functions correspond to those of a
headwaiter, or the caretaker of wine cellars. Belancre, a renowned
French demonologist, maintains that Behemoth is not a monstrous
animal of evil, but rather a spirit who likes to take on the
shapes of extremely large animals. According to the same
authority, Behemoth is also able to disguise himself perfectly as
a cat, a dog, a fox, or a wolf.
A great king and terrible, riding on a pale horse, before whom go
trumpets and all melodious music. He commands eighty-five legions.
He is very furious when first summoned, and must be commanded into
a triangle or circle with the hazel wand of the Magician pointed
to the South-East. He must be received courteously and with
homage, but a silver ring must be worn on the middle finger of the
left hand, which must be held against the face. He procures love
between man and woman, and is of the Order of the Powers.
'Never has Hell received a more dissolute, more heinous, more
worthless spirit, or one more in love with vice for vice's sake!'
The demon thus characterized by a medieval writer is Belial
(Beliar is the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew), the demon of lies.
His name is derived from the Hebrew 'beli ya'al,' meaning 'without
worth.' He is said to have been created immediately after Lucifer
himself, and was one of the first angels to revolt against God.
This is why he was expelled from heaven. He was partly of the
Order of the Virtues and partly of the Order of the Angels. Among
certain sections of the Jews, Belial was considered the chief of
all the devils.
In The War of the Sons of Light and the Sons of
Darkness, one of the Dead Sea scrolls, Belial is the leader of the
Sons of Darkness: 'But for corruption thou hast made Belial, an
angel of hostility. All his dominions are in darkness, and his
purpose is to bring about wickedness and guilt. All the spirits
are associated with him are but angels of destruction.' Belial is
also mentioned in the Fragments of a Zadokite Work, which states
that at the time of the Antichrist, "Belial shall be let loose
against Israel, as God spake through Isaiah the prophet." (6:9).
The Fragments also speak of "three nets of Belial" which are said
to be fornication, wealth, and pollution of the sanctuary.
(6:10-11) In this work, Belial is sometimes presented as an agent
of divine punishment and sometimes as a rebel, as Mastema is. It
was Belial who inspired the Egyptian sorcerers, Jochaneh and his
brother, to oppose Moses and Aaron. The Fragments also say that
anyone who is ruled by the spirits of Belial and speaks of
rebellion should be condemned as a necromancer and wizard.
is also mentioned in the Testament of the Twelve Patriarchs. The
author of the work seems to be a dualist because he presents
Belial as God's opponent, not as a servant, but does not mention
how or why this came to be. Simeon 5:3 says that fornication
separates man from God and brings him near to Beliar. Levi tells
his children to choose between the Law of God and the works of
Beliar (Levi 19:1) It also states that when the soul is constantly
disturbed, the Lord departs from it and Beliar rules over it.
Naphtali (2:6, 3:1) contrasts the Law and will of God with the
purposes of Beliar. Also, in 20:2, Joseph prophesies that when
Israel leaves Egypt, they will be with God in light while Beliar
will remain in darkness with the Egyptians.
Finally, the Testament
describes that when the Messiah comes, the angels will punish the
spirits of deceit and Beliar (3:3) and that the Messiah will bind
Beliar and give to his children the power to trample the evil
spirits (18:12). In the Martyrdom of Isaiah, Belial is the angel
of lawlessness and is the ruler of this world. "And Manasseh
turned aside his heart to serve Beliar; for the angel of
lawlessness, who is the ruler of this world, is Beliar, whose name
is Matanbuchus." - Martyrdom of Isaiah 2:4 According to the
medieval hierarchies, Belial was a king in hell, where he
commanded eighty legions of demons. He appears in the form of a
beautiful angel seated on a chariot of fire-belching dragons. To
conjure Belial, one must make offerings and sacrifices to him. He
answers in the most suave and pleasant of voices, but this is
deceptive. Unless one keeps him in check by continually invoking
the name of God, this Belial deceives all and sundry. To those
successful in gaining his friendship, it is said that he
distributes favours and preferences, and gives excellent
familiars. Belial is also supposed to be the infernal ambassador
Belphegor was originally a Moabite deity called Baal-Peor, who was
adored on Mount Phegor. For his generative and productive powers
he was worshipped in the form of a phallus. In the Kabbalah,
Belphegor is the archdemon of the Togarini, whose name means the
'wranglers.' MacGregor Mathers, in his book The Kabbalah Unveiled,
lists him as the sixth of the evil Sephiroth, who were the demonic
counterparts of the ten divine Sephiroth, or emanations of the
substance of God.
A medieval legend tells how Belphegor set forth
from hell to investigate rumours concerning the happiness and
misery of married couples on earth. For a while he lived among
men, imitating all the intimacies that men experienced. He is said
to have fled back to hell in horror, happy that intercourse
between men and women did not exist there. This is the reason why
the name of Belphegor is sometimes applied to misogynists and
licentious men. But his dislike of women seems to be contradicted
by a number of demonologists who maintain that he usually appeared
in the form of a beautiful young girl.
He was difficult to summon,
though it was known that he distributed riches with great
generosity, if the conjuror was agreeable to him. His gifts were
also the power of discovery and ingenious invention. He was
sometimes depicted as a naked woman and sometimes as a hideous
demon with a gaping mouth, beard and with horns and painted nails.
In the Dictionnaire Infernal, De Plancy mentions that several
rabbis maintained that Belphegor was paid homage to sit on a
'pierced chair,' because excrement was the usual sacrificial
offering to this demon.
According to Dom Jacques Martin (1684-1751) in his Religion de
Gaulois (1727), "chief deviless" of a certain Sabbatic meeting
held in France in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. She was,
he says, the Diana of the Ancient Gauls, and was also called
Nocticula, Herodias, and "The Moon." One finds in the manuscripts
of the church at Couserans that the ladies of the fourteenth
century were said to go on horseback to nocturnal revelries of
Bensozia. All of them were forced to inscribe their names in a
Sabbatic catalog along with those sorcerers proper, and after this
ceremony they believed themselves to be fairies. There was found
at Montmorillin in Poitou, in the eighteenth century, a portion of
an ancient temple, a bas-relief with the figure of a naked woman
carved upon it, and it is not unlikely, according to J. Collin de
Plancy (author of Dictionnaire infernal, 6th ed., 1803) that this
figure was the original deity of the Bensozia cult.
According to the detailed description of the seventy-two major
demons, as put forth in the Lemegeton, or the Lesser Key of
Solomon, Berith takes his place among the truly powerful spirits.
Weyer mentions that this demon was also called Beal, while certain
necromancers knew him as Bofi or Bolfri. In hell, he was ranked as
a duke having command over twenty-six legions of minor demons. He
appears clad in a soldier's uniform, wears a golden crown and is
mounted on a red horse. He can only be safely summoned with the
help of magic rings, bearing his specific seal. Berith's voice is
clear and persuasive, but he is a notorious liar. Anything he says
must be weighed with great care, though he does reveal the past
and the future. Berith also has the power to transmute all base
metals into gold; thus he is sometimes known as the demon helper
to the unscrupulous alchemists. Lured by a handsome reward, he
will ensure that great public dignities and manifold riches are
bestowed upon the conjuror. Finally, he possesses the rather
singular power of lending clarity of sound and ease of elocution
to the voices of singers. In books on magical recipes, Berith is
associated with a method of conjuring him under a form resembling
a mandragora. On a Monday night a black chicken is bled at a
crossroads. One must say: 'Berith will do all my work for twenty
years and I shall recompense him.' Or else one may write the spell
on a piece of virgin parchment with the chicken's blood. The demon
thus evoked will appear the same day, and put himself completely
at the conjuror's disposal. But after twenty years, Berith will
claim his reward for services rendered.
Indian demon, master of souls that roam through space after being
changed into airy demons. It is said to have crooked nails with
which it lopped off one of Brahma's heads.
A Hindu demon goddess. She is a form of Parvati.
A little-known demon, chief of a legion who was said to have
entered the body of Denise de la Caille and who was obliged to
sign with his claws the proces verbal of exorcisms.
He often takes the form of a man well versed in astrology and
planetary influences. He excels in geometry, is acquainted with
the virtues of herbs, precious stones and plants. He can transport
corpses from one place to another. It is he who lights the strange
corpse lights above the tombs of the dead. He commands twenty-six
Great Prince of Hell. He appears in the form of a leopard with the
wings of a griffon. When adopting a human form, it is invariably
one of great beauty. It is he who awakes lust in the human heart.
He commands seventy legions. Also known as Sytry, or Sitri.
Known as the Grand Enticer of Thieves, he eventually leads all of
his followers to destruction.
One of the two demons said to have been successfully exorcised
from Elisabeth Allier in 1639 by Francois Faconnet. The two demons
who had possessed her for twenty years admitted that they had
entered her body by means of a crust of bread which they had put
into her mouth when she was seven. They fled from her body in the
presence of the Holy Sacrament. The other demon's name was
A great president and earl, who appears like a horrid viper, but
when commanded, assumes a human shape, with large teeth and horns.
He bears a sharp sword in his hand, discerns past, present and
future, and reconciles friends and foes. One of the three demons
in the service of Agaliarept.
A great president and demon of the second order. He has the form
of a star, though sometimes depicted with the head of a lion and
the feet of a goat. He is gifted with a knowledge of philosophy
and of the virtues of medicinal herbs. He gives domestic felicity
and health to the sick. He is in charge of fifteen legions. Also
one of the three demons in service to Agaliarept. He appears when
the Sun is in Sagittarius.
Grand Duke of the infernal regions. He speaks only by sign. His
form is that of a man. He removes corpses, haunts cemeteries, and
marshals the demons around tombs and the places of the dead.
Commander of thirty infernal legions. He enriches and renders
eloquent those who serve him. The demons under his authority are
called Bunis, and regarded by the Tatars as exceedingly evil.
Their power is great and their number immense. But their sorcerers
are ever in communication with these demons by means of whom they
carry on their dark practices. He has also been depicted as a
three-headed dragon, the heads being respectively those of a dog,
griffin and man.
In Zoroastrian mythology, the yellow demon of lethargy and sloth.
He is the evil genius which causes men to oversleep and to neglect
their religious duties.
An evil demon in Indonesian mythology. A demon with hooked teeth
is called Buta Cakil.
An ancient Persian demon of laziness who tries to prevent people
from working. He is one of the Daevas.
A high order demon, identified as the Grand President of Hell. He
is figured in the shape of a god with the wings of a griffon. He
is supposed to inspire knowledge of the liberal arts and to incite
homicide. This fiend is said to be able to render people
invisible. He commands thirty-six legions. He is also called
Caasimolar or Glasya or Glasyalabolas.
Ancient deities of inferior rank, one of whom it was believed was
attached to each mortal from his birth as a constant companion,
capable of giving impulses and acting as a sort of messenger
between the gods and men. The cacodaemons were of a hostile
nature, as opposed to the agathodaemons who were friendly. It is
said that one of the cacodaemons who appeared to Cassius was a man
of large stature, and of a black hue. The belief in these daemons
is probably traditional, and it is said that they were rebellious
angels who were expelled from heaven for their crimes. They tried
in vain to obtain a settlement in various parts of the universe
and their final abode was believed to be all the space between the
earth and the stars. There they abide, hated by all the elements,
and finding their pleasure in revenge and injury. Their king was
called Hades by the Greeks, Typhon by the Egyptians, and Ahrimanes
by the Persians and Chaldeans. Early astrologers named the twelfth
house of the sun "Cacodaemon" as its influence was regarded as
Originally a pre-Roman god of fire, who gradually became a
fire-breathing demon. Cacus lived in a cave in the Aventine Hill
from where he terrorized the countryside. When Heracles returned
with the cattle of Geryon, he passed Cacus' cave and lay down to
sleep in the vicinity. At night Cacus dragged some of the cattle
to his cave backward by their tails, so that their tracks would
point in the opposite direction. However, the lowing of the
animals betrayed their presence in the cave to Heracles and he
retrieved them and slew Cacus. Other sources claim that Cacus'
sister told Heracles the location of his cave. On the place were
Heracles slew Cacus he erected an altar, where later the Forum
Boarium, the cattle market, was held.
According to Bodin and De Lancre, the offspring of incubus and
succubus. Some of these demons are said to be more kindly disposed
to the human race than others. Luther said of them in his
Colloquies that they show no sign of life before seven years of
age. He stated that he saw one which cried when he touched it. In
his Discours des Sorciers (Lyon, 1608), Henri Boguet quotes a
story that a Galician mendicant was in the habit of exciting
public pity by carrying about a Cambion. One day, a horseman
observing him to be much hampered by the seeming infant in
crossing a river, took the supposed child before him on his horse.
But he was so heavy that the animal sank under the weight.
Sometime afterwards the mendicant was taken and admitted that the
child he habitually carried was a little demon whom he had trained
so carefully that no one refused him alms whilst carrying it.
Demonic prince of the Powers.
Demons who bore men away, killed them, and had the power to break
and crush them. The sixteenth century theologian L. Campester
described how these demons treated their agents, the magicians and
Grand Master of Hell, commander of thirty legions. He is said to
be the cleverest sophist in Hell , and can, through astuteness of
his arguments, make the most skilled logician despair. He
understands the songs of birds, the bellowing of Oxen, the barking
of dogs and the sound of the waves. He knows the future and was
once numbered among the Order of Angels. He is depicted as an
elegant man with the head and wings of a blackbird.
(or Cagrino). An evil spirit believed in by European gypsies. It
was said to have the form of a hedgehog, yellow in colour, about a
foot and a half in length and a span in breadth. Heinrich von
Wlislocki stated: "I am certain, that this creature is none other
than the equally demoniac being called Harginn, still believed in
by the inhabitants of Northwestern India. Horses were the special
prey of the Chagrin, who rode them into a state of exhaustion,
like the Guecubu of Chile." The next day they appear sick and
weary, with tangled manes and bathed in sweat. When this is
observed they are tethered to a stake which has been rubbed with
garlic juice, then a red thread is laid on the ground in the form
of a cross, or else some of the hair of the animal is mixed with
salt, meal and the blood of a bat and cooked to bread, with which
the hoof of the horse is smeared. The empty vessel which contained
the mixture is put in the trunk of a high tree while these words
"Tarry, pipkin, in this tree,
Till such time as full ye be."
The Etruscan demon of death who torments the souls of the deceased
in the underworld. He also guards the entrance to the underworld.
He is similar to the Greek Charon. Charun is portrayed with the
nose of a vulture, pointed ears and is usually winged. His
attribute is the hammer, with which he finished off his victims.
A Moabite demon.
Chevaliers de l'Enfer
These demons are more powerful than those of no rank, but less
powerful than titled demons. They may be evoked from dawn to
sunrise and from sunset to dark.
A Burmese demon.
A powerful marquis, he appears like a valiant soldier on a black
horse. He rules the spirits in the parts of Africa; he teaches
grammar, logic, and rhetoric, discovers hidden treasures and
things lost and hidden; he can make a man appear like a soldier of
his own kind.
Vampire demons of ancient Mexico.
A demon said to be able to change day to night and night to day.
The Daevas were a class of demons in Zoroastrianism. They were the
spirits that chose to follow Angra Mainya. The Gathas mentions
three daevas, Aka Manah, Druj, and Aeshma. Aka Manah ('Evil Mind')
was created by Angra Mainya to oppose Vohu Manah ('Good Mind.') He
is second in command, next to his father, Angra Mainya, in the
host of demons. Aka Manah was said to have supported the demon
Buiti when he attacked Zarathustra. In the final conflict of this
present cycle, he will be overcome by Vohu Manah, and Angra Mainya
will become powerless and flee away. Druj ('liar' or 'deceiver')
is the female personification of wickedness, and who is the great
opponent of Asha.
She appears in both the Gothic and in the later
period. In the later period, the idea is pluralized, and the Druj
becomes the embodiment of the Evil Spirit through whom Ahriman
works. In later Avestan texts, the term refers to a class of
female demons, and the name is also applied to later demons or
even wicked people. The demon Buiti is called a Druj. In the
Vendidad, uncleanness of body is also personified as Druj Nasu and
is said to spread corruption in the world. Druj Nasu dwells in the
mountain, Aresura, in the northern region. As soon as a soul
leaves a body, she flies down from the mountain in the shape of a
fly, and seizes the corpse. This demon can be driven away by
specific holy spells, or the gaze of 'a yellow dog with four eyes,
or the white dog with yellow ears.' (Vend. viii.16-18) Aeshma is
known as the 'fiend of the wounding spear,' (Yasht xi.15) and is
the demon of wrath and fury. Sraosha is his greatest opponent.
According to Darmesteter, he was originally the leader of the
Dryvants, or 'storm-fiends,' but was later converted into the
principle of 'the demon of rage and anger,' and became an
expression for all moral wickedness. It is thought that Aeshma
became Asmodeus ('the evil demon') in the Book of Tobit. Azi
Dahaka ('fiendish snake') is conceived of as partly demonic and
partly human. He was probably originally the 'snake' of the
storm-cloud who was a counterpart of the Vedic Ahi or Vrita. In
the Yasht, he is described as struggling for the Hvareno, or
Kingly Glory, against Atar (Fire). In the Shah Namah, he appears
as a man with two snakes springing from his shoulders. These
snakes were have said to have grown from a kiss bestowed by
Ahriman. At the renovation, Azi Dahaka will be put in chains on
Mount Demavand; but in the end, he will break loose from the bonds
and return to disturb creation.
An ancient Persian god of death and demon of deceit and mendacity.
He loves destroying life. Dahaka is usually depicted with three
heads, while scorpions and lizards crawl all over his body.
The Daityas were a race of giants and demons, descendants of Diiti
by Kasyapa, who were gods involved with the creation of the world,
according to Hindu mythology. The Danavas were a very similar race
of demons, associated so closely with the Daityas that for all
practical reasons they have become indistinguishable. During the
Krita Yuga, that is the first age of the cosmos, these demons had
become so powerful, and were so well armed, that the gods could no
longer defeat them. With the enormous dragon-serpent, Vritra, on
their side acting as their commander-in-chief, the Daityas battled
against the gods and overcame them. The gods, horrified at being
homeless and scattered all over the universe, knew that the only
way to regain their celestial territory was to kill Vritra.
anguish and desperation they turned to Brahma, the Supreme Being,
for advice. He told them that the only way to conquer the Daityas
was to obtain a 'demon-slaying weapon' from the sage Rishi. When
the gods approached Rishi, the sage said: 'O ye gods, I will
renounce my body for your benefit' and out of Rishi's bones the
gods built a weapon called Vajra. Carrying this new weapon, Indra
lead the gods into battle, and soon they came face to face with
the serpent Vritra, surrounded by hordes of titanic demons.
mighty battle ensued, the gods finally slayed Vritra, and the
terrorized Daityas were chased down into the depths of the ocean
where Varuna, king of the sea, was given the task of keeping a
watchful eye on them. They were condemned to live in the watery
kingdom of Patala, side by side with the serpent-demons, the
Nagas. There, according to the Mahabharata the great epic poem of
the Hindus, the Daityas are to remain massed together, forever
plotting their revenge on the gods. During that first age the gods
made a temporary peace with the Daityas. They needed the demons'
co-operation in churning the ocean, so as to eventually bring up
everything solid out of the water, especially the cup containing
the sacred potion Amrita, which bestowed immortality on all who
tasted it. The gods wrenched a large mountain from the earth and
threw it into the ocean.
They asked the gigantic snake, Vasuki, to
twine around the mountain and act as a churning cord. The gods
were to pull one side of the serpent, while the demons were to
pull the other. Just as everybody was ready to begin the labour,
the Daityas who were at the tail end of the snake, refused to
help. They considered that part of the snake's body as ignoble.
The gods, grumbling, gave in to their demands and after some
difficulty, the task was accomplished. Another incident in which
the demons, who once again had obtained temporary ascendancy over
the gods but were in the end outsmarted, is the story of Bali, one
of the most dreaded titans, and of his pact with Vishnu, the
During Treta Yuga, the second age of the cosmos,
after the demon hordes regained control over the universe, Vishnu
set out to remedy this situation. He appeared in Patala, disguised
as a dwarf, acting as if in quest of a place to live. He
approached Bali, a leader among demons, and asked him if he could
have as much territory as he could cover in three paces. Smirking,
Bali consented to the dwarf's desire, at which point Vishnu
transformed himself into a giant whose three steps covered the
ocean, the earth and the heavens. Because a demon was bound to his
word as much as a god was, the gods once more won back the
universe from the forces of evil. The Daityas were renowned for
their refusal to offer sacrifices to the gods, and for their habit
of interfering with everybody who did so. This characteristic
earned them the name of Kratu-dvishas, 'enemies of sacrifices.'
The Bhagavad-Gita related the following incident as an example
illustrating this habit, which was in ancient times considered one
of the most heinous crimes. A renowned Daitya, Hiranya-Kasipu,
desired to be worshipped as a god. He tried to prevent his own son
from making sacrifices to Vishnu, but the son refused to comply
with his father's wish, saying that: "worship was due only to
Hari, the omniscient and omnipresent god." The enraged
Hiranya-Kasipu struck a pillar saying: "Let him come forth from
this pillar if he is everywhere!" Hari promptly appeared in the
form of a half-man and half-lion with eyes ablaze, and "red as
gold burnished in the fire, his face whose size was increased by a
thick and bristling mane...Like a snake seizing a rat, Hari seized
his adversary...and, laying him back over his thigh, as if it were
child's play, with his nails he tore the skin that thunderbolts
could not pierce...Shooting out looks of insupportable fury,
licking the corners of his wide mouth with his tongue...Hari
shaking his mane dripping with blood, made a garland for himself
with his enemy's entrails."
A demon riding an ostrich in the desert. It devours travellers.
A mighty duke, appears in the form of a man with many faces of men
and women, and has a book in his right hand. He teaches all arts
and sciences, declares all secret counsels, for all human
thoughts, and can change them at his will. He kindles love, and
shows the similitude of any person in a vision, wheresoever they
may be. A.k.a Dantalion.
A marquis, comes in the form of a star in a pentacle, but puts on
the image of man at command. He discovers the virtues of herbs and
precious stones, makes birds seem to fly before the exorcist, and
remain with him as familiars, singing and eating like other birds.
Devil worshipped by the inhabitants of Calicut in Malabar. He has
a crown, four horns on his head, and four crooked teeth in his
enormous mouth. He has a sharp, crooked nose, feet like a rooster,
and holds in his claws a soul he is about to devour.
In Persian mythology, a demon of enormous power, a ruthless and
immoral god of war.
An ancient Iranian female demon, the representation of the lie.
Together with horny men she causes much evil. She is the eternal
opponent of Asha Vahishta. Also Drug or Drauga.
The "Satan" of the Mohammedans. It was said that he was an inmate
of Azaze, the heaven nearest God, and when the angels were
commanded to bow down before the first man, Eblis was the chief of
those who rebelled. They were cast out of Azaze, and Eblis and his
followers were sentenced to suffer in hell for a long time. It is
supposed that he was composed of the elements of fire, and that he
succeeded the peris (fairy-like nature spirits) in the government
of the world. Also called Iblis.
The Roman personification of poverty. Virgil mentioned her later
as a demon in the underworld.
A great duke, appearing as a goodly knight carrying a lance,
pennant and sceptre. He discovers hidden things, causes war,
marshalls armies, kindles love and lust.
Demon belonging to a higher order, Prince of Death. He has
enormous, long teeth, a hideous body covered with sores and
Ewah is a demon. The very sight of Ewah causes permanent
irreversible insanity. The Ewah was destroyed by an Indian woman
named Running Deer.
A Hungarian demon, and the opposite of Isten, the god of light.
Fene is also the name of the place where demons roam.
Grand General and Duke of Hell. He appears in the shape of a
terrible leopard. When he assumes a human shape, he has a
frightful face and blood-red eyes. He knows the past, present and
future, but unless commanded into the triangle he will deceive the
exorcist. He incites demons or spirits against his enemies the
exorcists, and he commands twenty legions. He converses gladly of
divinity and the creation of the world, as also of the fall of
spirits, his own included.
A lieutenant general of the infernal armies.
A strong duke, appears in the form of a man with the wings of a
griffin. He drowns men, sinks warships, and has power over the
winds and the sea, but he will not hurt any one if commanded to
forbear by the exorcist. He hopes to return to the Seventh Thrones
in 1050 years.
The Fomors were an ancient tribe of Celtic sub-aquatic monsters.
Their ancestry and lifestyle have been described in detail in
books that date as far back as the eleventh century. One such book
is The Book of the Dun Cow, written about the year one thousand
and ninety, and it contains a section entitled the History of
Monsters or the Fomorians and Dwarfs. There the Fomors are said to
be the offspring of Noah's son, Ham, and are depicted as 'men with
goat's heads.' Other legends say that they were born before all
other gods, and were children of Chaos and Old Night. Their name
means the 'dark of the sea,' and they were thought to encompass
the antithesis of all that is good in the world. They lived mainly
on an underwater island, known as Lochlan. From there they issued
forth, terrorizing the coast of Donegal with their titanic
appearance. Each Fomor looked different from the others, although
they were in general of gigantic stature and had deformed limbs.
One of these weird beasts had 'one hand out of his chest, one leg
out of his haunch, and one eye in the front of his face.' Some
were covered with a thick layer of metallic feathers, while others
had three animal heads. The most cruel and treacherous of the
Fomors was one named Balor of the Evil Eye, who, though he had two
eyes, kept one perpetually shut. Balor had once by accident peered
through the window of a sorcerer's house in which a cauldron of
poisonous brew was bubbling over the fire. The smoke of the
concoction had blown into one of his eyes, and from then on, one
glance from that eye could kill anybody instantly.
Grand President and Knight of Hell, commander of twenty-nine
legions. He knows the properties of herbs and precious stones. He
teaches logic, esthetics, chiromancy, pyromancy and rhetoric. He
can make a man invisible, inventive and adept in the use of words.
He can locate lost objects and find hidden treasure. He is
depicted as an old man with white hair and a long white beard.
One of the demons who serves Sargatanas, a brigadier general of
the infernal legions.
A great marquis, appears as a sea-monster. He teaches all arts and
sciences, gives a good reputation and the knowledge of tongues,
and causes men to be loved by their enemies even as by their
The Japanese god of the wind and one of the eldest Shinto gods. He
was present at the creation of the world and when he first let the
winds out of his bag, they cleared the morning mists and filled
the space between heaven and earth so the sun shone. He is
portrayed as a terrifying dark demon wearing a leopard skin,
carrying a large bag of winds on his shoulders.
A great duke, appears in the form of a cruel old man, with a long
beard and hoary hair. He is settled on a pale horse, and has a
sharp spear in his hand. He teaches philosophy, rhetoric,
astronomy, logic, chiromancy, and pyromancy, perfectly in all
their parts.He has twenty legions at his command.
A great earl, appears in the form of a hart with a fiery tail, and
will not speak until compelled within the triangle. He then
assumes the form of an angel, speaking with a hoarse voice. He
causes love between man and wife, raises thunder, lightning, and
great winds, gives true answers about secret and divine things. He
is the commander of twenty-six legions.
A great president and prince, appears when the sun is in the
southern signs, coming in a human shape, and preceded by four
powerful kings. He teaches philosophy and the liberal sciences,
excites love and hatred, makes men insensible, gives instruction
in the consecration of things which belong to the divination of
Amaymon, his king, delivers familiars out of the custody of
Magicians, gives true answers as to past, present and future,
transports men speedily from place to place at the will of the
exorcist. According to Weyer, he will speak outside the triangle,
but what he says will be false.
From Kur, the Sumerian underworld, came seven demons called Galla.
They were the attendants and messengers of Ereshkigal, the goddess
of death and gloom, who sat naked on a throne in her dark lapis
lazuli palace, surrounded by seven great walls. The central rule
of the Sumerian hell stated that no one, neither a mortal nor a
god, who entered her dark domain, could ever leave Kur again. To
this the Galla were an exception, for they could roam the world to
relentlessly terrorize men and haul them back to the dark abode.
Gods and humans alike, on earth or in hell, needed food and drink.
But not the Galla who, to quote an ancient Sumerian poem:
'Touched no food,
Drank no water,
Did not taste the sprinkled flour,
Did not know the sacred wine.
No bribe mollified the Galla,
Nor did they satisfy a woman's body
But hated children
And tore them from their parents' lap.'
The goddess, Innana, having failed in her attempt to over throw
her sister, Ereshkigal, who had imprisoned her in Kur, managed to
escape from the underworld. But the seven Galla followed,
threatening to drag her back if she could not find another deity
to take her place. When Innana found the shepherd Dumuzi, her
lover, celebrating instead of mourning her departure, she cast the
eye of death on him. He was delivered into the demons' hands:
'The seven demons grip his thighs,
They bite and tear his face,
They slash at his body with an axe,
They turn his face into the face
A great marquis, appearing in the form of a small horse or ass,
but afterwards in human shape. He speaks hoarsly teaching the
liberal sciences, and giving news of souls who have died in sin.
According to Weyer, he summons into the presence of the exorcist
the souls of drowned men, and of those detained in Purgatory,
called magickally Cartagra - that is, the affliction of souls.
They assume an aerial body, are visible to sight, and reply to
A demon (possible female) in the deserts of the Red Sea countries.
It catches travelers and tortures them by devouring their
In Muslim folklore, the ghoul is a female demon of the desert that
is able to assume the shape of an animal. It is an evil spirit
that robs graves and feeds on the flesh of the dead. They also
lure travelers into the desert, sometimes beguiling them by
prostituting themselves, and then devouring them.
Prince of the western region of Hell.
A powerful duke, appears like a beautiful woman, wearing a ducal
crown. He discovers past, present, and future, as also the
whereabouts of hidden treasures; he procures the love of women,
and especially of girls.
A Chinese demon who is responsible for the great floods, together
with his associate, the snake-like Xiang Yao. Gong Gong is the
eternal opponent of the highest ruler. Also called Kung Kung.
The Gorgons were the three demonic daughters of Phorcys and Ceto.
The word Gorgons meant 'the grim ones,' and because of their
mother's name they were sometimes alluded to as the Phorcydes.
They had long, razor-shaped teeth, brazen claws, while their faces
and breasts were those of women. They were usually considered
demons of the underworld or of the deep sea. Medusa ("ruler"), the
most infamous of the three and the only mortal one, had hissing
vipers instead of hair. Her sisters, who were both immortal, were
named Stheno ("forceful") and Euryale ("far-roaming"). So dreadful
was their appearance that the area outside the cave in which they
lived was surrounded by bodies of those who had had the misfortune
to look directly at a Gorgon's face. One glance sufficed to turn
the greatest hero into stone. Their faces were likened to the
pock-marked surface of the moon. To ward off undesired suitors,
ancient Grecian chastity belts were stamped with the Gorgon's
likeness above the keyhole.
Bakers also painted their oven door
with a Gorgon face in order to discourage anyone from opening the
door and letting in a draught. Medusa was the ugliest of the three
because she had once dared boast greater beauty than that of
Athena, the goddess of wisdom. The goddess promptly transformed
Medusa into a hag. Later Athena, still full of anger, helped the
hero Perseus kill the Gorgon. She told him to approach the
demoness while she was asleep, and to be sure not to look at her
face but to guide his sword by looking at her image in his highly
polished shield. After chopping off Medusa's head, Perseus
presented the goddess with the trophy, which she attached to the
centre of her magic shield, the Aegis.
King of the southern regions of Hell.
Among the Araucanians, an Indian tribe of Chile, South America,
the Guecubu were evil spirits, who did all in their power to
thwart and annoy the Great Spirit Togin and his ministers.
A mighty duke, who appears like a cynocephalus, and discerns the
past, present and future, answers all questions, reconciles
enemies and gives honours and dignities.
A demon in the service of Agaliarept.
A greatly feared Hungarian demon who beats his victims to death.
A Duke of Hell, commander of twenty-six legions. He is the demon
of fire and holocausts. Depicted as a three-headed monster - a
cat, a man and a snake - sitting astride a viper and brandishing a
A great president, appears in the shape of a gigantic bull with
the wings of a griffin, but will duly put on human form. He gives
wisdom, transmutes metals into gold, and turns wine into water.
A great earl, appears in the form of a stockdove, speaking with a
hoarse voice. He 'burns towns,' visits the wicked with the sword,
and can send men to fields of war or to other places.
According to Norwegian legend, Ham was a storm-fiend in the shape
of an eagle with black wings, sent by Helgi to engulf Frithjof as
he sailed for the island of Yarl Angantyr. This story is told in
the Saga Grettir.
The Malayan vampire.
A Malay demon.
A monstrous demon from India, who abducted little children and
devoured them, until the Great Buddha converted her. She then
became Kishimo-jin, the patron goddess of little children.
The Greeks often called Hecate, Agriope, which means 'savage
face.' She is said to have three faces, which symbolized her
powers over the underworld, earth, and air. She is known as the
lady of the underworld, of chthonic rites, and of black magic. Her
Hebrew name was Sheol, and the Egyptians knew her as Nepthys. She
was the daughter of the titan Perses and of Asteria, although
sometimes it is said that Zeus himself fathered her. The Thracians
were the first people to worship her in the moon-goddess aspect,
though soon her worship spread to the Greeks, who linked her with
the moon-goddesses Artemis and Selene.
She was also associated
with Lucina and Diana. At times she was benign and motherly and
would act as midwife, wet-nurse, and foster-mother, while keeping
an eye on flocks and crops. Greek kings asked for her help in
administering justice, knowing that with Hecate on their side they
would attain victory and glory in battle. But the other side of
her nature, most apparent when the moon was dark, gradually
superseded her kinder side.
Although Homer did not mention her in
his poems, by the time Hesiod was chronicling the events of his
world, her powers were already very great. She had become an
infernal deity, a snake goddess with three heads: a dog's, a
horse's, and a lion's. She was portrayed with her three bodies,
back to back, carrying a spear, a sacrificial cup, and a torch.
Having witnessed the rape of Persephone, torch-bearing Hecate was
sent by Zeus to help Demeter find her. When they found Persephone
in Hades, Hecate remained there as her companion.
During her stay
in the underworld, Hecate wore a single brazen sandal, and she was
the protector and teacher of sorceresses and enchanters. Her high
priestess was Medea, who was worthy of her mistress, and cruelly
murdered her own two children after her husband left her for
another woman. Hecate's influence was long lasting, and the
medieval witches worshipped the willow tree which was sacred to
The same root word which gave 'willow' and 'wicker,' also
gave 'witch' and 'wicked.' Thus Hecate became key-holder of hell
and queen of the departed, dispatching phantoms from the
underworld. At night she left Hades and would roam on earth,
bringing terror to the hearts of those who heard her approach. She
was accompanied by her hounds and by the bleak souls of the dead.
She appeared as a gigantic woman bearing a sword and a torch, her
feet and hair bristling with snakes, her voice like that of a
Her favourite nocturnal retreat was near a lake
called Amarantiam Phasis, 'the lake of murders.' To placate her,
the people erected statues at crossroads. There, under the full
moon, feasts called 'Hecate's suppers' were served. Dogs, eggs,
honey, milk, and particularly black ewes were sacrificed at that
time. The most powerful magic incantations of antiquity were
connected with Hecate, and her rites were described at length by
Apollonius Rhodus in his Argonautica: '...and he kindled the logs,
placing the fire beneath, and poured over them the mingled
libations, calling on Hecate Brimo to aid him in the contest, And
when he had called on her he drew back: and she heard him, the
dreaded goddess, from the uttermost depths and came to the
sacrifice of Aeson's son; and round her horrible serpents twined
themselves among the oak boughs; and there was the gleam of
countless torches; and sharply howled around her the hounds of
hell. All the meadows trembled at her step, and the nymphs that
haunt the marsh and the river shrieked, all who dance round that
meadow of Amarantiam Phasis.'
In one of her incarnations she was
Hecuba, the wife of Priam, King of Troy, and mother of Cassandra,
Hector, Helenus, and Paris. While pregnant with Paris, she had a
dream in which she gave birth to a flaming torch which consumed
Troy. Understanding the awesome foreboding of this omen, she left
the infant exposed on Mount Ida. But the Fates had ordained
differently, and years later Paris returned to Troy, bringing with
him the war that was to be the end of that great city.
Polymnestor, a Thracian king, murdered her son Polydorus, her
vengeance was terrible: she slew Polymnestor's two children and
gouged his eyes out. Although acquitted by the Greeks, she was
changed into a dog at which the Thracians threw stones. Trying to
escape her punishment, she jumped into the sea at Cynossema, which
in translation means 'tomb of the dog.' Hecate, powerful in
heaven, earth and hell, possessed all the great dark knowledges,
and is rightfully called the mother of witches. She was the great
goddess of magic, and she outstripped Circe, her daughter, in
Yet another of her daughters also achieved hellish
fame: '...and let them not fall in their helplessness into
Charybdis lest she swallow them at one gulp, or approach the
hideous lair of Scylla, Ausonian Scylla, Scylla the deadly, whom
night-wandering Hecate, who is called Crataeis, bare to
The extent of her powers can be judged by the great
numbers of animals, plants and emblems that were sacred to her.
Weasels were her attendants. So were owls in their silent flight,
with the carrion-smell of their nests and their eyes shining in
the dark. Hound, knife, lotus, rope, and sword are other emblems
of Hecate. Shakespeare knew that hemlock and the yew tree were
sacred to her. In Macbeth, 'slips of yew sliver'd in the Moon's
eclipse' were contained in the witches' cauldron. The yew, sacred
to the goddess of the underworld, still grows in cemeteries.
A Hurrian snake-like demon which lives in the sea. The creature is
A Norwegian sea-witch or storm-fiend in the shape of a white bear,
alluded to in the Frithjof Saga. With the other storm-fiend Ham,
she was sent by Helgi to engulf Frithjof as he sailed for the
island of Yarl Angantyr.
Finnish mythology abounds with limitless classes of evil spirits
and demons which bring troubles and miseries upon mankind. In the
icy polar regions, bordering the South of Lapland, lay the
Pohjola, where the dead found their home. It was governed by the
severe Tuoni, the chief deity of the underworld. The Pohjola was a
region 'which devours men and swallows heroes,' as one ancient
Finnish poem says. There, the most wicked sorcerers loved to dwell
and lay in ambush to watch men. It was the cradle of all demons.
Born in eternal darkness and cold, they would scatter over the
whole universe to mislead hunters, cause diseases and disturb the
silence of the night.
Chief among these demons was Hiisi, a
fearful giant who seems to have originally been a personification
of the icy and fatal North wind. Hiisi had a wife and children,
horses, dogs, cars, and servants; all as hideous and wicked as he
himself. An evil tribal chief, he was followed at all times by his
complete household. With the help of his large family, he extended
his influence everywhere. His servant, Hiisi-hejmolainen, reigned
over the mountains, while another servant, Wesi-Hiisi, was the
lord of the waters. His bird, Hiiden-Lintu, carried evil through
the air, and Hiisi's horse, Hiiden-Ruuna, sped across the plains
and the deserts, spreading illness and death. The sound of its
hooves, hammering the frozen steppes at night, was a sign of
imminent disaster which struck every Finn's heart with terror.
Hiiden-kissa, as Hiisi's cat was called, was also fearsome, though
at times she forced thieves to confess and so turned her wicked
actions to a good purpose.
A Burmese evil spirit of ague.
The strange tale of this demon, well documented in the ample
chronicles of the ancient Chinese empire, was told in the Tang
dynasty period, during the reign of emperor Ming Huang. While
leading a military expedition to Mount Li in Shensi, the emperor
fell prey to a malignant fever. Semi-delirious and unable to get
any refreshing sleep, he tossed all night on his cot. Ming Huang
suddenly caught a glimpse of a small figure, darting around his
palace. The creature was dressed in red trousers, and wore no
shoes. Ming Huang grew angry and asked him who he was. 'Your
humble servant' replied the demon, 'I am called Hsu Hao. Hsu means
'to desire emptiness,' because in emptiness one can fly as one
wishes, while Hao means 'desolation' and changes people's joy to
sadness.' The emperor, enraged by the demon's insolence, was about
to call his guard, when suddenly a larger creature appeared; a
genii wearing a tattered hat and robe, a horn clasp on his belt,
and an official's boots on his feet. He grabbed the small demon,
tore out one of his eyes and ate it. Ming Huang, startled by these
wondrous proceedings, questioned the newcomer. 'Your humble
servant,' this one replied, 'is Chung Kuei, physician of Chung-nan
Shan in Shensi. In the reign of emperor Kao Tsu, I committed
suicide on the steps of his palace, because I was unjustly denied
a public office I was seeking. The emperor took pity and buried me
in the robe of his own clan. Out of gratitude, I swore to protect
the sovereign for ever against the demon Hsu Hao.' At these words
the emperor sat up and found that the fever had left him. Chung
Kuei became known as the 'protector against evil spirits,' and is
still honoured as such.
The demonic ambassador to Italy.
According to Arabian writers, Iblis is the name of an Islamic
devil, derived from the word 'despair.' He is also referred to as
Sheitan, the generic name for devils, and is often called 'father
of the Sheitans.' He is able to assume any shape or form he
desires, though he is often represented as vain and stupid,
adorned with the feathers of the peacock and the head of an ass.
In the beginning, Iblis was one of the mightiest of angels. When
God created Adam, he told the angels to bow down before the first
man and worship him. But Iblis refused, arguing that it was
beneath his dignity, as a being created of fire, to pay homage to
a being made of mere dust. Allah cursed him and banished him from
heaven. Iblis begged Allah to postpone further punishment until
the Day of Judgement. He was granted this wish, and given the
power to roam about the earth leading astray all those who are not
true servants of God.
This is very similar to Jewish apocalyptic
stories of the fall of Satan. In Arabic legend, it was Iblis who
tempted Eve. Trying to gain access to paradise, he asked all the
animals to smuggle him in, but they refused. He then asked the
peacock who also refused. The bird told the serpent about Iblis'
wish, saying that he had promised the animal who would help him,
the knowledge of three sacred words that would make it immortal.
The serpent carried Iblis hidden in his mouth into paradise, and
it is from that hideout that Iblis spoke to Eve. This is also
similar to the story in the Apocalypsis Mosis where Satan used the
serpent as a vessel to tempt Eve. It is said that Iblis is both
male and female, and by impregnating himself, he can perpetuate
the race of evildoers on his own. Another version says that every
time he rejoices over the rebelliousness of the children of Adam,
he lays two eggs from which young demons are hatched.
In medieval European folklore, the incubus is a male demon (or
evil spirit) who visits women in their sleep to lie with them in
ghostly sexual intercourse. The woman who falls victim to an
incubus will not awaken, although may experience it in a dream.
Should she get pregnant the child will grow inside her as any
normal child, except that it will possess supernatural
capabilities. Usually the child grows into a person of evil intent
or a powerful wizard. Legend has it that the magician Merlin was
the result of the union of an incubus and a nun. A succubus is the
female variety, and she concentrates herself on men. According to
one legend, the incubus and the succubus were fallen angels. The
word incubus is Latin for "nightmare". These demons associated
with an individual witch or sorcerer are known as familiars.
A mighty earl and prince appearing as an angel with a lion's head,
the webbed feet of a goose, and a hare's tail. He knows the past
and future, and imparts wit and courage.
A demon of falsehoods.
An Indonesian sea demon. In Javanese mythology, a servant of the
goddess of the southern ocean, who can kill a person by sitting on
his chest. Jin Laut = Djinn of the Sea
The usual Arabic term for demon is 'Jinn.' They are referred to as
the 'dark ones' or the 'concealed ones.' They are usually regarded
as the descendants or ghostly shadows of nations who have passed
away. They live in desolate places that were formerly populated,
and also in burial grounds and places of filth or refuse. It was
believed that they loved darkness and feared the approach of day.
Another story of the Jinn tells of several thousand years before
the creation of Adam, a class of beings called Jinn inhabited the
earth. They were made of fire, which circulated in their veins
instead of blood. When a Jinn was mortally wounded, fire burst
forth from his body and consumed him until he was but a heap of
ashes. In the Koran, this fire is called 'smokeless fire,' and it
is associated with the scorching heat of the desert wind Simoon,
as opposed to the life substance of the heavenly angels whose
blood is linked with the pure light substance emanating from
The Jinn were a powerful race, governed over by a
succession of seventy-two kings or Suleyman. The last Suleyman,
Jan-Ibn-Jan, is said to have built the pyramids. They were a vain
and hot-headed race and Allah often sent angels, in the guise of
prophets, down to earth to admonish them. When they refused to
better their ways or be true servants of God, an army of angels
was dispatched to earth, defeating them after several battles and
taking many prisoners. Among the prisoners was a young Jinn, named
El-Harith, whom the angels took with them to heaven. There he grew
up under their guidance and finally became their leader. El-Harith
was no other than Iblis, 'the evil one,' as he was to be called
when he lead the angels' revolt against Allah. When the children
of Adam had peopled the earth, the vindictive Jinn lead by Iblis,
distributed themselves among them and perpetrated all kinds of
malicious deeds. They later began to resemble men in that they ate
and drank, and propagated their own species.
At times they united
with human beings, and the offspring of such a union took on the
nature of both parents, making them very cunning and dangerous
mortals indeed. The Jinn take on any number of animal or human
shapes, according to their whim. They also have the ability to be
visible or invisible at their choosing. The Jinn usually take the
form of snakes, lizards, scorpions, and other creeping things, but
they can also take the form of larger animals. One legend tells of
a family of Mecca that was so plagued by the Jinn that its members
went out into the desert and began to systematically kill all
insects and reptiles. After a while the Jinn were so depleted in
number that they decided to call a truce. The family then returned
home and was never again plagued or haunted by the demons.
Sometimes they take on the form of hybrid animals, such as a
combination of a wolf, a hyena, etc.
The Jinn are not pure spirits
because if one is killed, a solid carcass remains. An example of
this is the story of how a Ghul ('the daughter of the Jinn') came
one night to the fire which a man had kindled. The man cut off her
head, which resembled a cat with a forked tongue. King Solomon,
when he first saw the Jinn, was horrified by their ugly
appearance. But with the help of incantations and spells given to
him by one of Allah's archangels he managed to gain power over
them and could command then at will. He confined them in a brazen
vessel which he hid in a deep well.
The Jinn are usually divided
into five classes, the least powerful being the Jann. These demons
create minor nuisances, and steal animals from farmers. The Jann
are usually demons who have been demoted from the second and more
powerful category of the Jinn. The third class is called the
Afrits. These are considered to be the embodiment of cleverness,
so much so, that to call a Mohammedan an Afrit is the highest
compliment one can pay to his intelligence. Next in rank come the
powerful Marids and Sheitans, the most evil ones, and the
favourite troops of Iblis, who bestowed upon them great gifts of
extraordinary strength and knowledge. Besides the five classes of
these fiends, there are a number of Jinn who are obedient to Allah
and believe in the Prophet. These good Jinn often assume the form
of household serpents, still common among certain East African and
Ethiopian tribes. Frequently they appear in the shape of a toad.
In Morocco, toads are therefore not killed, but respectfully
requested to leave the house. At times the evil Jinn ascend to the
confines of the lower heaven, where they eavesdrop on the
conversations of angels. Men versed in the arts of conjuring and
binding demons can make the Jinn reveal what they overheard, and
so gain some knowledge of future events.
The Jinn are said to be
responsible for everything that appears contrary. For example, if
cattle refuse to drink when driven to water, the Jinn are
responsible. They are also said to be responsible if a woman is
unfruitful or has a miscarriage. They are said to be the cause of
all sickness and disease, and can also possess people.
Persian and Arabic civilizations, encounters with the Jinn have
been a favourite topic for the narratives and comments of eminent
historians and religious leaders. An example are the famous tales
of the Thousand and One Nights. Here is one small story, as told
by the historian Ibn Athir. "In the year six hundred of the Hegira
(the usual Islamic time-reckoning, based on the date of Mohammed's
flight from Mecca to Medina in A.D. six hundred and twenty-two),
Ibn Athir resided in the city of Mosul on the Tigris River. It was
then that an epidemic disease of the throat ravaged the country.
The source of the epidemic was traced to a woman who was of the
Jinn race. This woman had just lost her favourite son, Ankood, and
was angry at Allah for what she called an unjust treatment. When
she was in mourning, no one came to console her, so to avenge
herself and her son's death, she used her evil powers to spread
the fatal disease. As soon as it was known that she was a Jinn,
all the people assembled and surrounded her house. They yelled
with all their strength: 'O mother of Ankood, excuse us! Ankood is
dead, and we did not mind it!' The Jinn, thus pacified, left the
region never to return or to be heard of again, and in a few days
time, the epidemic subsided."
Prince of the demonic angels.
A giant demon in Mayan myth who causes earthquakes. He makes
mountains disappear, while his brother Zipakna makes mountains
rise, also through earthquakes. They are the children of Vucub
The Hindu demon which tried to attack Brahma.
Kali is an emanation or aspect of Devi, one of the Asuras, whose
name means 'black.' She was often called 'Kali Ma' meaning the
black mother. She has a dark complexion; long, loose hair; a
blood-smeared tusked face; and three eyes. She has four arms: one
handling a sword; another holding the severed head of a giant; and
with the other two, she encourages worshippers. She is naked
except for a belt made of rows of severed hands and a garland
around her neck made of human skulls and of snakes. She is usually
shown standing over her husband,
Her first deed was her battle with Raktavira. Unfortunately, each
drop of blood Raktavira shed gave birth to a thousand giants as
powerful as himself. She finally overcame him by holding him up,
piercing him with her spear and drinking all his blood (which is
why she is often shown with her tongue lolling out and dripping
with blood.) After the fight, Kali danced a victory dance that
shook the entire earth. Siva begged her to stop, but Kali did not
see him and he was trampled underfoot. From that time on, the gods
would bribe or beg her to slay their foes. She gladly did this to
satisfy her lust for blood. Once, she was sent out to kill the
buffalo demon Mahisha, who by practice of austerities, had gained
enough strength to threaten the gods in their celestial kingdom.
For this fight, the gods gave Kali ten hands and lent her their
own weapons. Siva gave her a trident. Varuna, a conch shell. Agni,
a flaming dart. Vishnu, a discus. Surya, a quiver and arrows.
Indra, a thunderbolt. Kubera, a club. Shesha, a garland of snakes,
and Himalayas, a tiger. With these weapons, Kali had no problems
On another occasion, she was called upon to
rid the world of the demon, Durga, who had overcome three worlds
and driven the lesser gods into the jungle. The demon was
mismanaging the land and courting disaster by forcing the earth to
yield more crops than it could bear. Kali created Kalaratri (Dark
Night), a heavily armed monster, but Durga defeated it. Kali then
defeated Durga by grabbing the demon with her thousand arms,
pinning him to the ground, and piercing him through the chest with
an arrow. Two demon brothers, Sumbha and Nisumba, had achieved
immunity from any harm by the gods, so Kali was the only one who
could defeat them. She took the shape of a beautiful woman and let
herself be seen by the spies of the demons.
Sumbha sent a proposal
of marriage to Kali, but she replied she would only marry a man
who could defeat her in a single battle. Sumbha and Nisumba sent
three armies against her, which she defeated. The brothers finally
attacked her themselves, but Kali had created a powerful army of
her own and destroyed the demons.
In another incarnation, Kali
took on the form of a male demon, attended by Dwapara, a
flesh-eating fiend. This tale is known as The Story of Nala. Kali
learned that the demi-goddess, Damayanti, with whom he (the male
Kali) was in love, had married a mortal king called Nala. Kali
For twelve years, Nala and Damayanti lived in
happiness, but one night Nala committed a minor sacrilege of not
washing his feet before going to bed. Kali could only possess the
king's soul after Nala had committed a sin: 'Lo! I shall be
avenged, for I shall enter his body, and he will be bereft of his
kingdom and his bride. Thou, Dwapara, shall enter the dice and
give me thine aid.' Kali then beset the King with a craving desire
to gamble. Nala challenged his brother Pushkara to a game of
chance. During the game, Dwapara interfered. Prodded by Kali, Nala
gambled away his fortune and kingdom until he was only left with
his wife, whom he could not gamble away. Nala then left his
kingdom to roam through the jungle, abandoning his beloved wife.
Kali then assumed the form of a wandering hunter and approached
Damayanti, who was roaming through the forest in search of her
She told the hunter her story and he appeared
moved by her great beauty. Perceiving his evil intent, she spoke a
powerful curse which banished the hunter instantly. Unwittingly,
she had exercised Kali from her and Nala's life. They returned to
their kingdom, where, in a final match, Nala won back his estate
from his brother. Kali is waited upon by a great number of demons
called Dakinis, who feed upon flesh and are also known as Asra-pas
or blood drinkers. Her worship includes orgiastic rites and human
sacrifices. According to Indian calculations, the world is now in
the fourth age of the cosmos. This age is called Kali Yuga or
Kali's Age: the Age of Destruction.
The Kappas are Japanís most infamous water demons. Even the onrush
of the twentieth century has been unable to stem these demonsí
evil deeds. In Japanese villages, a modern traveller can easily
find natives who have seen a Kappa, and who are willing to talk
about their experiences. These ugly, monkey-like creatures are
about the size of a ten year old child. At first glance they may
appear ridiculous rather than demonic. They have saucer-shaped
heads, yellowish-green skin, long noses, crazily staring round
eyes, and a strange mixture of animal limbs. But beneath the
childish and foppish appearance, these demons are very lethal.
They live in rivers, ponds, lakes, and the sea, from which they
emerge at night to steal cucumbers and melons. The Kappasí truly
evil natures show in their lust for wrestling matches, ending
invariable in the death of their opponents. They also enjoy raping
women who are careless enough to venture close to their habitat at
nightfall. Individual Kappas may have their personal predilections
for certain mischievous deeds. All of them, however, are known to
drag men, women, and livestock into the water and then to suck the
blood and pluck out the liver through the anus. A certain very
cunning Kappa used to appear as a child sitting on a rock by a
pond. He would talk passers-by into a friendly game of
pull-finger. Those who stopped and played were pulled into the
water and drowned. But the Kappas have one weakness. Their
concave, saucer-shaped heads are filled with water. It is this
water which gives them their strength. If one is able to jostle a
Kappa so as to make him spill the water, the demon loses his power
and can easily be subdued.
A demon who disturbs the prayers of Muslims, thus causing doubt in
In Eskimo myth, a fanged demon and the enemy of priests.
The demon in Mesopotamian myth who became the second consort of
the goddess Tiamat, after her first consort Apsu had been slain.
She gave him the Tablets of Destiny and intended to make him lord
of the gods. He was killed by the young god Marduk who took the
Tablets and fastened them on his chest. He killed Kingu and
created mankind from his blood. Kingu plays an important part in
the creation epic Enuma Elish.
The Japanese Buddhist patron goddess of little children. Her name
means 'mother goddess of the demons' and she was originally a
monstrous demon from India (called Hariti). She abducted little
children and devoured them, until the great Buddha converted her.
Now she represents the Buddha's appeal to compassion, and his
devotion to the welfare of the weak. Kishimojin is portrayed as a
mother suckling her baby, and holding a pomegranate in her hand
(the symbol of love and feminine fertility). She is also called
Burmese evil spirits inhabiting trees.
Koschei the Deathless
A demon of Russian folklore. This horrid monster is described as
having a death's head and fleshless skeleton, "through which is
seen the black hood flowing and the yellow heart beating." He is
armed with an iron club, with which he knocks down all who come in
his path. In spite of his ugliness, he is said to be a great
admirer of young girls and women. He is avaricious, hates old and
young alike, and particularly those who are fortunate. His
dwelling is amongst the mountains of the Koskels and the Caucasus,
where his treasure is concealed.
A wicked forest demon of the Bangala of the Southern Congo.
The Greeks knew Lamia as the beautiful daughter of Belus, the king
of Libya. She was loved by Zeus, who thanked her for her favours
by giving her the power of plucking out and replacing eyes at
will. She bore Zeus several children, but they were all killed by
Hera, in a fit of jealous rage at her husband's shamelessly public
amorous adventures. Embittered, Lamia became a demoness who took
her revenge by snatching and destroying the children of others,
and she joined a group of demons known as the Empusae. The Empusae
were children of Hecate, the witch-goddess of the underworld, and
were known for their incredibly filthy habits. Sometimes they were
described as being ass-haunched and wearing brazen slippers,
though usually they were represented as having one leg of brass
while the other was an ass's leg. The Empusae, whose name means
the 'forcers in,' disguised themselves in the forms of bitches,
cows, or beautiful maidens. In the latter shape these greedy
demons would lie with men at night or at the time of midday sleep.
Lamia gave birth to a whole family of female demons, known as
Lamiae, who were sorceresses with the face and breasts of a
beautiful woman, and the body of a serpent. They enervated,
seduced, and sucked the blood of youths. In Canaan, Lamia was
known as Alukah, which means horse-leech. The horse-leech is a
small fresh-water animal, with thirty teeth in its jaws. When a
beast goes to drink, the leech swims into its mouth and fastens on
the soft flesh at the back of the throat, sucking blood until it
becomes completely distended. The same kind of relentless greed is
attributed to Lamia.
The guardian demon of crossroads
A first order demon, Inspector General of black magic and sorcery,
Master of the Sabbats. He presided over these as a great black
goat with three horns and the head of a fox.
A great marquis of Hell. He commands thirty of the infernal
legions. He comes in the likeness of an archer, clad in green, and
bearing bow and quiver. He occasions battles and causes arrow
wounds to putrefy. Also Larajie.
The Apocryphal Book of Enoch gives the following description of
this monster's origins: 'And that day will two monsters be parted,
one monster, a female named Leviathan in order to dwell in the
abyss of the ocean over the fountains of water; and (the other), a
male called Behemoth, which holds his chest in an invisible desert
whose name is Dundayin, east of the garden of Eden.' - 1 Enoch
Leviathan was the
enormous whale who appeared throughout the legends of the Hebrews.
He was the demon master of the ocean, and reigned also as king of
beasts, feared by God and men alike. No man-made weapons could
hurt him. It is thought that he is derived from the Canaanite
Lotan, and that he is related to the Babylonian Tiamat and the
Greek Hydra. Descriptions of him say he had seven heads. According
to the medieval hierarchies he was the Grand Admiral of the
maritime regions of Hell.
He is perhaps best
known from the Biblical tale in the Book of Jonah. Jonah had fled
in fear of God towards the city of Tarshish which lay across the
sea. But during the sea journey, God created a mighty tempest. The
ship's crew found out that Jonah was the cause of the story; they
threw him overboard, and he was swallowed by Leviathan. The
monster kept Jonah captive in his belly for three days, until God
commanded him to vomit 'out Jonah upon dry land.' In Paradise
Lost, Milton depicted Leviathan as 'the Arch-Fiend' inhabiting the
waters around Scandinavia. The beast permitted sailors, who
thought the dark mass sticking out of the ocean was an island, to
anchor their boats on his back. When all was dark, Leviathan would
plunge into the depths, dragging the ship and its crew after him.
In the Book of Job, Leviathan is described as an invulnerable
demon connected with the primeval waters of the ocean:
'His back is made of rows of shields,
Shut up closely as with a seal...
His sneezings flash forth light,
And his eyes are like the eyelids of the dawn.
Out of the mouth go flaming torches;
Sparks of fire leap forth...
In his neck abides strength,
And terror dances before him.'
Also, according to Isaiah 27:1, on the Day of Judgement the Lord
will slay Leviathan:
"In that day the Lord will punish,
With His great, cruel, mighty sword
Leviathan the Elusive Serpent--
Leviathan the Twisting Serpent;
He will slay the Dragon of the sea.
According to a passage in the T.B. Baba Bathra (75a), at the time
of the resurrection, Gabriel will fight against Leviathan and
overcome. Of course, in Psalms 74:26 God is praised as having
crushed the heads of Leviathan:
'it was You who crushed the heads of Leviathan,
who left him as food for the denizens of the desert'
In Tibetan Bon religion, she was originally a female demon. Later
she became the patron goddess of Lamaism.
In the Babylonian tradition, there is a triad of demons that
Lilith is associated with. The male is called Lilu, and the two
females are called Lilitu and Ardat Lili, the 'maid of
desolation.' Lilitu was a frigid, barren, husbandless demon who
roamed the night searching for men as a succubus for she would
drink their blood. Lilith is thought be the demon of waste places
who originally lived in the garden of the Sumerian goddess,
Innana, queen of heaven. She is mentioned only briefly in the
Hebrew Bible in Isaiah 34:14.
In Jewish traditions, God gave
Lilith to Adam as his first wife to banish his loneliness. Like
him, she had been created from the dust of the earth. She insisted
upon enjoying full equality with her husband, deriving her right
from their identical origin. Rather than acknowledging Adam as her
superior and becoming his servant, she left him and was turned out
of paradise. Ever since, Lilith has been roaming the world, making
the air and all desolate places her home, howling her hatred of
mankind through the night, vowing vengeance for the unjust
treatment she received. She is called the 'howling one' and her
name means 'screech owl.' It is mistakenly thought that Lilith's
name was derived from the Hebrew word lailah, which means 'night.'
This was probably derived from the similarity of the two words,
and the idea that Lilith was mostly active at night.
Before creating Eve,
God dispatched three angels to induce Lilith to return to Adam.
When she refused, God put a curse on her that made one hundred of
her offspring die every day. Lilith became the mistress of
Sammael, the archdemon or the serpent who tempted Eve, and thus a
queen of demons. But after the expulsion, she slept one more time
with Adam, and from that union were born the Shedim, Linin, and
Ruchin. Lilith is usually portrayed with long flowing hair, and
she also possesses wings.
She is the queen of the
class of demons known as Lilin or Lilim, who were monsters with
human bodies, the hindquarters of an ass, and wings. In the Zohar,
the first important book of Jewish Kabbalah, is found the
following description of how Lilith takes vengeance: 'She adorns
herself with many ornaments like a despicable harlot, and takes up
her position at the crossroads to seduce the sons of man. When a
fool approaches her, she grabs him, kisses him, and pours him win
of dregs of vipers' gall. When she sees that he is gone astray
after her from the path of truth, she divests herself of all
ornaments which she put on for that fool.
Her ornaments are: her
hair is long and red like a rose, her cheeks are white and red,
from her ears hang six ornaments, Egyptian cords and all the
ornaments from the land of the East hang from her nape. Her mouth
is set like a narrow door comely in its decor, her tongue is sharp
like a sword, her words are smooth like oil, her lips are red like
a rose and sweetened by all the sweetness of the world. She is
dressed in scarlet and adorned with forty ornaments less one. Yon
fool drinks from the cup and commits with her fornications. She
leaves him asleep on the couch, flies up to heaven, denounces him,
and descends. That fool awakes and deems he can make sport with
her as before, but she removes her ornaments and stands before him
in garments of flaming fire, inspiring terror and making body and
soul tremble, full of frightening eyes, in her hand a drawn sword
dripping bitter drops. And she kills that fool and casts him into
Gehenna.' No wonder that the Zohar calls Lilith 'Serpent, Woman of
Harlotry, End of All Flesh, End of Days.' Eternally furious at the
cruel punishment inflicted upon her, Lilith stalked through the
night, stealing children from their cribs, unless prevented by
specific charms. Infants, especially girls, were most susceptible
during the first two to three weeks of their lives.
The charms that warded
off her evil influence were amulets inscribed with the name of the
angels sent to bring her back to Adam - Samvi, Sansavi,
Semangelaf. Or else they invoke the names of Adam and Eve, and the
phrase 'Lilith be gone.' These charms had to be distributed around
the room according to special magical patterns. Even today, among
the Jews of Palestine, Lilith - succubus, childstealer and evil
eye - is averted from the bed by hanging over it a charm in
Hebrew. It is made of special Kabbalistic paper and tied together
with a piece of rue, garlic, and a fragment of a mirror. On the
first possible sabbath all the relations assemble in the room and
make a hideous noise to drive away the evil spirit. Although
unproved, there is a strong possibility that the English word
'lullaby' is nothing more than a corruption of 'Lilla-bi' - Lilith
medieval times, Lilith was considered the cause of nocturnal
emissions and was believed to be a dangerous presence in the
marital chamber. On this, another Kabbalistic text comments as
follows: 'And behold, that hard shell (embodiment of evil), Lilith
is always present in the bed linen of man and wife when they
copulate, in order to take hold of the drops of semen which are
lost - because it is impossible to perform the marital act without
such a loss of sparks - and she created out of them demons,
spirits and Lilin...But there is an incantation for this, to chase
Lilith away from the bed and to bring forth pure souls...in that
moment, when a man copulates with his wife, let him direct his
heart to the holiness of his Master, and say:
In the name of God
O you are wrapped in velvet
You have appeared!
Neither come nor go!
The seed is not yours,
Nor is your inheritance.
Go back, go back!
The sea rages,
Its waves call you.
I hold on to the Holy One,
Wrap myself into the King's holiness!'
Name given to Lucifer before The Fall.
"How art thou fallen from heaven
O day-star, son of the morning! (Helel ben Shahar)
How art thou cast down to the ground,
That didst cast lots over the nations!
And thou saidst in thy heart:
'I will ascend into heaven,
Above the stars of God (El)
Will I exalt my throne;
And I will sit upon the mount of meeting,
In the uttermost parts of the north;
I will ascend above the heights of the clouds;
I will be like the Most High (Elyon).'
Yet thou shalt be brought down to the nether-world,
To the uttermost parts of the pit."
- Isaiah 14:12-15
In Christian tradition, this passage is proof for the fall of
Lucifer. However, it may be that this passage is an allusion to a
Canaanite or Phoenician myth about Helel, who is the son of the
god Shahar. Helel sought the throne of the chief god and was cast
down into the abyss because of this. El, Elyon, and Shahar are
members of the Canaanite pantheon, while the "mount of meeting" is
the abode of the gods, which corresponds to Mount Olympus in Greek
mythology. There is an Ugaritic poem about two divine children,
Shachar (dawn) and Shalim (dusk), who were born as a result of the
intercourse of the god El with mortal women. There are, however,
no Canaanite sources that tell about Helel ben Shahar or a revolt
against Elyon. Many Apocalyptic writers interpreted this passage
as referring to Lucifer, and wrote about the fall of the angels. 1
Enoch refers to the falling angels as stars (see the watchers) and
may be the beginning of the overlap between the story of the
watchers and Isaiah. The name 'Lucifer' means light-bearer, and is
not used in the New Testament, where the "bearer of light" is
Christ. He was once one of the Seraphim (sometimes called the
fiery, flying serpents). Later authors, such as St. Jerome,
associate Ezekial 28:13-15 with Lucifer, the greatest of the
fallen angels. It has been argued that this passage was actually
addressed to Nebuchadnezzar.
"You were in Eden, the garden of God;
Every precious stone was your adornment:
Carnelian, chrysolite, and amethyst;
Beryl, lapis lazuli, and jasper;
Sapphire, turquoise, and emerald;
And gold beautifully wrought for you,
Mined for you, prepared the day you were created.
I created you as a cherub
With outstretched shielding wings;
And you resided on God's holy mountain;
You walked among stones of fire.
You were blameless in your ways,
From the day you were created
Until wrongdoing was found in you
By your far-flung commerce
You were filled with lawlessness
And you sinned.
So I have struck you down
From the mountain of God,
And I have destroyed you, O shielding cherub,
From among the stones of fire."
Later interpretations of the fall tell that Lucifer was upset
because God the Father made Lucifer's brother, Jesual, the Son.
From his head, he gave birth to Sin, and by copulating with her,
fathered Death. He was then cast out of heaven. According to the
hierarchies he was the Emperor of the Infernal legions. There are
characters similar to Lucifer in other mythologies. In Egypt,
there is a serpent god, Sata, who is father of lightning and who
likewise fell to earth. A Babylonian god, Zu, was also a lightning
god who fell as a fiery flying serpent.
Prime Minister of the demons of Hell. He is served by Baal,
Aguares and Marbas and has power over all the treasures of the
world. He avoids light and can only assume a body at night.
Grand President of Hell, commander of forty legions. He builds
impregnable citadels and towers, overthrows the Temples and Towers
of his enemies, finds good workmen, gives familiar spirits,
receives sacrifices and deceives the sacrificers. He is depicted
as a crow with a hoarse voice, though will assume human form if
Familiar demons who appear in the figures of little men without
beards. The name is also applied to the plant popularly known as
mandrake, whose roots resemble human form and were believed to be
inhabited by demons.
A Buddhist demon who attempts to trick people into damning their
A president, who appears as a mighty lion, and then in human
shape. He answers truly concerning all things hidden or secret,
causes and cures diseases, imparts skill in mechanics, and changes
men into various shapes. One of the three demons in service to
A mighty marquis, appears in the form of a wolf with the wings of
a griffin, a serpent's tail, and fire issuing from his mouth. At
the command of the operator he assumes a human form. He is strong
in battle, gives true answers to all questions, and is extremely
faithful to the exorcist. He belongs to the Order of Dominations.
The demonic ambassador to Switzerland.
Among the major classes of Sumerian demons, the seven Maskim were
the most powerful ones. Their name is usually interpreted as
meaning 'ensnarers' or 'layers of ambushes.' Their dwelling place
was said to have been the bowels of the earth, or the heights of
the mountains. Ancient Sumerian tablets say that 'they are neither
male nor female, those who stretch themselves out like chaind;
they do not take wives, they do not make children; they are
strangers to benevolence and listen neither to prayers nor to
wishes' These formidable demons had a cosmic character, that is,
their actions affected the general order of the universe: 'They,
the seven, proceeding from the Western Mountains, They, the seven,
increasing the Eastern Mountain.'
This inscription attributes to
the Maskim the power to go against the normal course of nature. By
causing the earth to tremble, they were nicknamed the 'terror of
the earth's mass.' They could even interrupt the movements of the
stars in the sky. But besides these elemental concerns, the Maskim
were also known to attack men; harming them with spells, conjuring
'the evil command which issues from the midst of heaven; the evil
fate which springs from the depth of the abyss.' Another tablet
sums up their fearful actions as follows: "From the four corners
the thrust of their advance burns like fire, They violently invade
the dwellings of man, They lay bare the town as well as the
country, They stomp the free man and the slave.'
Mastema is mentioned only in The Book of Jubilees and in the
Fragments of a Zadokite Work. In the Book of Jubilees, Mastema
seems to be identified with Satan. He asked the Lord that some of
the spirits might be allowed to remain with him to do his will.
God granted his request and allowed one tenth of the spirits to
remain with Mastema, while the other nine parts would be
condemned. He seems to be of a different nature than those evil
spirits he is pleading for.
He has no concern that he will be
bound with the others. "When Mastema, the leader of the spirits,
came, he said: 'Lord creator, leave some of them before me; let
them listen to me and do everything that I tell them, because if
none of them is left for me I shall not be able to exercise the
authority of my will among mankind. For they are meant for (the
purposes of) destroying and misleading before my punishment
because the evil of mankind is great.' Then he said that a tenth
of them should be left before him, while he would make nine parts
descend to the place of judgment." - Jubilees 10:8-9
Mastema is probable derived from the Hebrew, Mastim, the Hiphil
participle of Satam, and it means 'one who is adverse' or
'inimical.' The word is equivalent to Satan (adversary). The term
is sometimes used in the plural, which indicates that there was a
class of 'the Mastema' as well as one prince, Mastema. This is
similar to the chief Satan and his class of Satans (see 1 Enoch
40:7). Jubilees implies that Mastema is subservient to God.
task is simply to tempt men to sin and if they do, he accuses them
before the Throne of God. He does not initiate the process of sin,
but Mastema and his spirits then lead them on to greater
wrongdoing. This is related to the Biblical function of Satan,
where men can achieve righteousness if they are tempted and
resist. "And they made for themselves molten images, and they
worshipped each the idol, the molten image which they had made for
themselves, and they began to make graven images and unclean
simulacra, and malignant spirits assisted and seduced (them) into
committing transgression and uncleanness. And the prince Mastema
exerted himself to do all this, and he sent forth other spirits,
those which were put under his hand, to do all manner of wrong and
sin, and all manner of transgression, to corrupt and destroy and
to shed blood upon the earth. For this reason he called the name
of Seroh, Serug, for every one turned to do all manner of sin and
transgression. - Jubilees 11:4-6
This portrayal of Mastema is not
always consistent because sometimes he also is also presented as
the incarnate of evil. He is seen as a destroyer and as one who
hates Israel. According to Jubilees, it was Mastema (not Sammael)
who urged God to test the piety of Abraham (as Satan did with Job)
by demanding Isaac as a sacrifice. "Then Prince Mastema came and
said before God: 'Abraham does indeed love his son Isaac and finds
him more pleasing than anyone else. Tell him to offer him as a
sacrifice on an altar. Than you will see whether he performs this
order and will know whether he is faithful in everything through
which you test him." - Jubilees 17:16
Mastema is also attributed
with certain actions that are ascribed to God, Himself. In
Jubilees, it is Mastema who made an attack on Moses' life, not God
(Exodus 4:24). This is similar 1 Chronicles 21:1 and 2 Samuel 24:1
where Satan is attributed to asking David to take a census, as
opposed to God. "You know who spoke to you at Mt. Sinai and what
the prince of Mastema wanted to do to you while you were returning
to Egypt - on the way at the shady fir tree. Did he not wish with
all his strength to kill you and to save the Egyptians from your
power because he saw that you were sent to carry out punishment
and revenge on the Egyptians?" - Jubilees 48:2-3
Mastema is also
attributed to opposing Moses in Egypt. He is said to have helped
the Egyptian sorcerers achieve their wonders and urged the
Egyptians to pursue after the children of Israel. Mastema was even
bound and imprisoned so that he might not accuse them, re-released
so that he might help the Egyptians, and finally bound again.
(48:15-19) "And the prince Mastema stood up against thee, and
sought to cast thee into the hands of Pharaoh, and he helped the
Egyptian sorcerers, and they stood up and wrought before thee the
evils indeed we permitted them to work, but the remedies we did
not allow to be wrought by their hands." - Jubilees 48:9-10 "
notwithstanding all (these) signs and wonders the prince Mastema
was not put to shame because he took courage and cried to the
Egyptians to pursue after thee with all the powers of the
Egyptians, with their chariots, and with their horses, and with
all the hosts of the peoples of Egypt." - Jubilees 48:12
Mastema is attributed with slaying the first-born in the land of
Egypt, which is attributed to the Lord in Exodus 12:29. "For on
this night -the beginning of the festival and the beginning of the
joy- ye were eating the passover in Egypt, when all the powers of
Mastema had been let loose to slay all the first-born in the land
of Egypt, from the first-born of Pharaoh to the first-born of the
captive maid-servant in the mill, and to the cattle." - Jubilees
The Fragments briefly mention that if a penitent sinner vows
to improve and then lives accordingly, the angel of Mastema
departs from him. Because of these similarities with the
traditional role of Satan as portrayed in the Old Testament, it is
probable that Mastema is just an apocalyptic name for Satan.
The name given to the prince of demons in an apocryphal book
entitled Little Genesis, which was quoted by the Greek monk and
historian Cedrenus (11th century).
A Central African demon considered to regard good living with
A type of demon in the Marshall Islands. These demons are almost
exclusively female. When a woman was pregnant, often her husband
would sail off to go and collect gifts or special food, etc. for
his wife. However, if he was gone for too long a period of time,
the pregnant woman would turn into a mejenkwaad. Very often this
would mean she'd eat her newborn child. When the husband arrived,
she'd go after him as well. The story of Lokokelok tells of a man
who evades being eaten by a mejenkwaad through a series of tricks
he plays on her.
A demon worshipped by the Ammonites and described as the treasurer
of the house of infernal princes.
One of the seven chief devils.
A demon prince whose chief power lies in pestilence.
Ancient peoples frequently made mention of certain demons who
became visible especially towards midday to those with whom they
had a pact. They appeared in the form of men or of beasts, and let
themselves be enclosed in a symbolic character, a figure, a vial,
or in the interior of a hollow ring.
In the Old Testament, Moloch was an evil deity called the
'abomination of the Ammonites.' Worshipped as a sun god, Moloch
embodied the savage and devastating aspects of the sun's heat. He
was also thought to be the bringer of plagues.
erected huge bronze statues in his honour, depicting him as a
bull-headed colossus with extremely long arms, sitting on a throne
of brass. His rites included human sacrifices, especially the
immolation of firstborn infants. This sacrifice was said to be the
most powerful way to avert disaster and death from the community
at large. The Greeks, who identified him with a Carthaginian deity
of male principle, compared Moloch to Cronos. This titan usurped
his father's throne and killed him. To make sure that the same
fate should not befall him, Cronos devoured his own children. In
time the name Moloch came to be applied to any number of cruel
doctrines and evil practices.
Moloch (or Saturn-Moloch) is also
identified with Baal Hammon in Carthaginian religion, in which
human sacrifice was performed to appease the god. An example of a
religious tablet reads as such: "To the Goddess to Tanath the
countenance of Baal; To the Lord to Baal Hammon, a man vowed, Even
Abshamban, a votary of Ashtarte and a filial Devotee of Ashmon: as
thou hearest the supplication, Do Thou Bless!"
Infants were not
the only ones sacrificed in Carthage. Justin writes: "they used as
a remedy a bloody piece of religion and a horrid abomination. For
they sacrificed men as victims, and brought to the altars
children..., begging the favour of the gods by shedding the
Ancient descriptions of the sacrificial sites were
described. "Unlike the houses of the other idols, that of Moloch
was set outside the city. It was gigantic in form and had the head
of what appeared to be an ox, the hands stretched out as if to
receive something, the body was hollow inside. Before the idol,
there were seven temples, the first six of which were employed for
the sacrifice of various fowl and animals, the seventh reserved
for a human sacrifice."
Diodorus described the ritualistic
sacrifice. First, the devotee would kiss the image of Moloch. He
would then make a fire under the idol, which would quickly cause
the hands of the statue to become red-hot. A victim would then be
placed in the hands to suffer an agonizing death. His cries would
be muffled by the drums. While this was taking place, the prophets
would dance around an altar, "with violent gesticulations, and,
having excited themselves to a pitch of frenzy by it, as well as
by their fearful vociferations they began to cut their bodies with
knives and lancets. In this unnatural state they began to
prophesy, or rather rave, as if possessed by some invisible
It was mentioned in the Old Testament that Jezebel
sacrificed to Moloch, and supported 450 of these prophets. The
exact location of these sacrifices is called Topheth, a name
which, according to some, was derived from the Hebrew 'toph,'
meaning 'drum;' because drums were supposedly used to drown out
the cries of the victims. The place was also called Hinnom in the
Old Testament, because of the cries of children. Hinnom is derived
from naham, which means to roar. Because of this, Moloch is often
referred to as the 'prince of the valley of tears.'
the medieval hierarchies he was a prince of the infernal regions
who receives a mother's tears with joy. In the Kabbalistic
tradition, Moloch, together with Satan, was the first of the ten
evil Sephiroth. He represented the negative aspect of the first
Sephiroth, Kether, also known as the 'crown of knowledge.'
Biblical References include: - Leviticus 18:21 And thou shalt not
let any of thy seed pass through the fire to Molech, neither shalt
thou profane the name of thy God: I am the LORD. - Leviticus 20:2
Again, thou shalt say to the children of Israel, Whosoever he be
of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn in
Israel, that giveth any of his seed unto Molech; he shall surely
be put to death: the people of the land shall stone him with
stones. - Leviticus 20:3
And I will set my face against that man,
and will cut him off from among his people; because he hath given
of his seed unto Molech, to defile my sanctuary, and to profane my
holy name. - Leviticus 20:4
And if the people of the land do any
ways hide their eyes from the man, when he giveth of his seed unto
Molech, and kill him not: - Leviticus 20:5
Then I will set my face
against that man, and against his family, and will cut him off,
and all that go a whoring after him, to commit whoredom with
Molech, from among their people. - 1 Kings 11:7
Then did Solomon
build an high place for Chemosh, the abomination of Moab, in the
hill that is before Jerusalem, and for Molech, the abomination of
the children of Ammon. - 2 Kings 23:10
And he defiled Topheth,
which is in the valley of the children of Hinnom, that no man
might make his son or his daughter to pass through the fire to
Molech. - Jeremiah 32:35
And they built the high places of Baal,
which are in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to cause their sons
and their daughters to pass through the fire unto Molech; which I
commanded them not, neither came it into my mind, that they should
do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin. - Amos 5:26
have borne the tabernacle of your Moloch and Chiun your images,
the star of your god, which ye made to yourselves. - Acts 7:43
Yea, ye took up the tabernacle of Moloch, and the star of your god
Remphan, figures which ye made to worship them: and I will carry
you away beyond Babylon.
A great earl and a president of Hell, who appears like a
human-headed bull, and gives skill in astronomy and the liberal
sciences, with good familiars. He knows the virtues of all herbs
and precious stones.He has command of thirty-six of the infernal
legions. Mountain Man A Japanese demon who lives in the forests.
Woodcutters describe him as very strong and resembling a hairy
ape. To pacify him they offer him rice.
The chief lieutenant to Leonard.
A great duke and earl, appears in the form of a soldier riding on
a griffin, and having a duke's crown on his head. He is preceded
by two ministers sounding trumpets. He teaches philosophy
perfectly, and constrains the souls of the dead to appear and to
answer questions. He was partly of the Order of Thrones and partly
A Marquis of Hell. He is depicted as a crow with a hoarse voice
who gives skill in arts and sciences, especially rhetoric, and
restores lost dignities and honours.
The Nagas of Indian mythology were a race of serpent demons. Their
name means 'those who do not walk, who creep.' Most often they
manifested themselves as beasts with bodies that were half-man,
half-serpent, although sometimes they assumed the shape of a
dragon, or simply appeared in the guise of a cobra. A precious gem
was embedded in their throats or skulls, and this endowed them
with great magical powers. They haunted lakes and rivers, but
their true domain was a vast, idyllic region below the sea. In
Patala, their underwater habitat, they hoarded great amounts of
jewels and precious metals. Here the demons dwelt with their
seductive mates, the Naginis who, like mermaids, seduced mortals
into the briny depths. The Nagas were greatly feared for their
venom, which they used to lethally wound all those wealthy enough
to be enticing prey. The Nagas once fatally wounded a king
renowned for his riches, and famous for his benevolence. The
king's son obtained revenge by slaughtering thousands of serpents
with a powerful incantation. The Nagas finally hired a wise man
who, with a counterspell, put a stop to the mass execution of the
demons. A good example of the Nagas' greed is the story of how
they got their forked tongues. When the elixir of immortality was
being rationed by the gods, the Nagas grabbed the cup containing
the sacred potion. The gods reclaimed the cup but, during the
struggle, a few drops were spilled onto the ground. The Nagas
eagerly licked them up, but the cutting grass, covering the earth,
split their tongues which from then on remained forked.
A minor god of the underworld in Sumerian mythology, Namtar was
regarded as the bringer of disease and pestilence. It is fate,
destiny in its evil aspect, pictured as a demon of the underworld.
In addition to spreading disease, Namtar acted as the herald or
messenger and chief minister of Ereshkigal, the queen of the
Sumerian underworld, and the god Nergal. Nergal in his guise as
the god Irra, and Namtar were believed to cause all diseases in
A field marshal of the infernal regions who has the power to
inflict harm and predict future events.
A second order demon who is an associate of Beelzebub. Nergal was
originally a Sumerian deity before being demonized by the
An inferior demon in charge of pleasures in the infernal regions.
A second order demon, chef in the house of the infernal princes.
Prince of the demonic archangels.
One of the two demons said to have been successfully exorcised
from Elisabeth Allier in 1639 by Francois Faconnet. The two demons
who had possessed her for twenty years admitted that they had
entered her body by means of a crust of bread they had put into
her mouth when she was seven years old. They fled from her body in
the presence of the Holy Sacrament. The name of the other demon
A great marquis, appears in the form of a lion bestriding a strong
horse; he has a serpent's tail, and holds two enormous hissing
snakes in his right hand. He teaches the virtues of the planets
and the mansions thereof; he transforms men, gives dignities,
prelates, and confirmations, with the favour of friends and foes.
He is also the demon of divination.
A Guyana demon, master of the eclipse.
A great prince, appears first like a horse, but when commanded, in
human form. He discovers past, present, and future; he gives good
dignities and advancements, with the favour of friends and foes;
he will reply concerning the creation of the world and Divinity;
he is very faithful to the exorcist, and defends him from
temptation by any spirit.
A great president, appears at first like a leopard, and then in
human form. He gives skill in all liberal sciences, and true
answers concerning divine and secret things. He can change men
into any shape that the exorcist may desire, and he that is
changed will not know it.
Demon in charge of ceremony in the infernal regions. a great king,
very obedient to Lucifer. He appears like a crowned man seated
upon a dromedary, proceeded by all manner of musicians. He speaks
with a roaring voice, teaches all arts, sciences and secrets,
gives and confirms dignities, makes men subject to the will of the
Magician, provides good familiars. He is observed towards the
North-West, and is of the Order of Dominions.
A winged demon, feared by the people of ancient Mesopotamia. It is
a creature with a deformed head, the wings of an eagle, the sharp
claws of a lion on its hands and feet, and the tail of a scorpion.
This demon is the personification of the south-east storm wind,
which brings diseases. The Mesopotamians believed that Pazuzu
lived in the desert.
The demonic prince of the Principalities.
A second order demon, assistant of Belial. He tempts mortals to
engage in sodomy and pederasty.
A great marquis, appears like the bird of that name, singing
dulcet tones in a childs voice. When he assumes human shape at the
will of the Magician, he speaks marvellously of all sciences,
proves an excellent poet, and fulfills orders admirably. He hopes
to return to the Seventh Throne in 1200 years.
A demon in Maori myth.
These Hindu demons are evil, ghostlike spirits who animate dead
bodies and are prone to residing in cemeteries. They are
moderately tall and feed only on filth and excrement without ever
being satisfied. Some wear pigs' masks for faces, while others
vomit fire that burns them away, or cut and slash their flesh with
their fingernails. Popular belief has it that avaricious people
often became Pretas. Some Pretas assume the shape of formidable
giants and are known as Yeaks. All in all there are thirty-six
classes of Pretas, some of them appearing only as animated
skeletons. The Indian Buddhist tradition depicts them with huge
bellies, large mouths and tiny, contracted throats. Some sources
disagree with this description, giving the Pretas 'mouths as small
as the eye of a needle,' enabling them 'to emit but the weakest
and eeriest of whistling sounds.' In any event, they are unable to
take in sufficient quantities of food and drink, and are condemned
to suffer perpetual thirst and starvation. A number of Pretas
reside in hell as servants of Yama, the king of the underworld.
Their infernal quarters are 'a hell of deep night, intense cold,
absolute silence and continuing hunger.' Others roam the earth,
reside in the air, and mix with mankind, although they are visible
only at night. Sakyamuni, a great religious leader, instituted the
ceremony of feeding the Pretas. He told one of his disciples to
make offerings for the benefit of his mother, who had had the
misfortune of being reborn as a Preta. Ever since, Hindu
Bodhisattvas have taken pride in charitable acts of food offerings
to console the famished demons, whom they see as afflicted souls
condemned to err eternally.
Appears in the form of an angel, and is a great strong duke. He
speaks mystically of hidden things, teaches geometry and the
liberal sciences, and at the command of the operator will make a
great commotion like that of running waters; he also warms waters
and tempers baths. He was of the Order of the Powers before his
fall. Pruflas Grand Prince and Grand Duke of the infernal empire.
He reigned in Babylonia where he had the head of an owl. He stirs
up strife, starts wars, initiates quarrels and reduces people to
mendacity. He gives lengthy answers to all questions. Commander of
Pua Tu Tahi
A dangerous demon living under the sea in Tahitian cosmology. His
name means 'Coral Rock Standing Alone'.
A great king, who appears like a lion-headed man carrying a viper
in his hand, and riding on a bear, preceded by many trumpeters. He
conceals and discovers treasures, discerns past, present and
future, gives true answers concerning things human and divine, and
provides good familiars.One of the demons in service to Fleuretty.
A type of demon, similar to a ghul.
Rahu, also known as Abhra-pisacha, the 'demon of the sky,' was a
great prince of the Daityas, a race of gigantic demons who warred
against the gods. His father was Viprachitta who was king of the
Daityas and his mother was Sinhika who was a flesh-eating fiend
who could seize the shadow of the object she wanted to devour and
so drag her prey into her jaws. Rahu had four arms, and sometimes
the lower part of his body ended in a dragon's tail.
He is best
known for his attempt to interrupt the regular gods and has the
reputation of a cunning and mischievous demon. By churning the
ocean, the gods had produced Amrita, the elixir of immortality.
One day they were waiting in line for the beverage to be passed
out. Rahu, wearing a disguise, insinuated himself among the gods
and hid between Soma, the moon, and Surya, the sun. By the time
these two gods discovered the fraud and called out to Vishnu, Rahu
had already sipped the divine liquid. Vishnu turned towards the
demon in rage, and with his discus cut Rahu's body in half. But
the Amrita had already had time to take effect, and both parts of
Rahu lived on. Rahu never forgave the sun and moon for informing
Vishnu of him, and his bodiless head has been pursuing his enemies
ever since, occasionally swallowing them. Lacking a body, he can't
retain them, and they reappear for a short time. He is thus the
source of eclipses.
Rahu is sometimes shown riding an owl or
reclining on a divan. His name means 'to abandon' or 'void,' hence
blackness or having no body, links him to the astronomers'
'umbra.' He is associated with a star in the northern sky, in the
constellation of Draco, which is sometimes referred to as the
The Japanese god of thunder (rai) and lightning (den). He
prevented the Mongols from invading Japan in 1274. Sitting on a
cloud he sent forth a shower of lighting arrows upon the invading
fleet. Only three men escaped. Raiden is portrayed as a red demon
with sharp claws, carrying a large drum. He is fond of eating
human navels. The only protection against him is to hide under a
mosquito net. Also called Kaminari Sama.
A Japanese demon whose name means "thunder animal". It is a demon
of lightning in the shape of a cat, badger or weasel. During
thunderstorms it becomes extremely agitated and leaps from tree to
tree. If a tree shows the marks of lightning, people say that
Raiju's claws have scratched it open. The demon likes hiding in
human navels, so, if afraid, a person should sleep on his or her
belly during thunderstorms.
Along with Ravana, the Rakshasas, whose name means 'to guard,'
were created by Brahma in order to protect the ocean from anyone
who might try to obtain the elixir of immortality, which could be
found on the ocean floor. Other sources have stated, though, that
the Rakshasas, who frequently peopled the numerous epic poems of
ancient India, were in fact the negroid race of barbarians
inhabiting the southern part of India before the conquest of the
country by the Aryans. The Rakshasas were evil spirits and demons
living on the island of Lanka, ruled over by Ravana. They were
renown for haunting burial grounds, animating dead bodies,
terrorizing priests and cannibalizing villages.
The Ramayana, one
of the great Indian epics, tells how Hanuman, a demiurge in the
form of a monkey, visited Lanka. He found that 'the Rakshasas
sleeping in the houses were of every shape and form. Some of them
disgusted the eye, while others were beautiful to look upon. Some
had long arms and frightful shapes; some were fat and some very
lean. Some had monstrous bellies, sagging breasts, long projecting
teeth and crooked thighs; whilst others were exceedingly beautiful
to behold and clothed in great splendour. Some had two legs, some
three legs, and some four legs. Some had heads of serpents, some
had heads of donkeys, some the heads of horses and some the heads
of elephants.' This huge array of differing appearances is
mirrored in the multitude of names the Rakshasas were given:
biters, cannibals, vampires, night-stalkers, assassins, dark faces
- a list of titles as endless as the catalogue of their crimes.
The Hindu general of the demon army.
A great earl, appears in the form of a crow, but assumes human
shape when bidden. He steals treasure and carries it where
commanded; he destroys cities and dignities; he discerns past,
present and future; he causes love between friends and foes.
Finally he is of the Order of the Thrones. He commands thirty of
the infernal legions.
Ravana is probably the best known of all Indian demons. His power
and the awe he inspired among the people puts him on equal footing
with the European Satan. He was lord and master of the Rakshasas,
the most numerous and powerful demons of the Indian underworld.
Visravas and Nikasha, his parents, were both descendants of the
first demons created. Ravana's abode, and that of his legions, was
the large island of Lanka which is now known as Ceylon.
city of Lanka was originally built by Visva-Karma out of solid
gold for Ravana's half-brother Kuvera, lord of the Indian elves,
the Yakshas, who are guardians of the hidden treasure within the
earth and sometimes will guard a city or district. The city is
described in the Ramayana as being of great size and of greater
beauty, surrounded by seven moats and seven huge walls of metal
and gems. But Ravana ousted his half-brother from his idyllic
palace, and he stole his magic chariot, Pushpaka, a self-propelled
vehicle of such large dimensions that it could hold a palace
inside its carriage. In this chariot Ravana often left Lanka to
sow his malignant seeds of mischief and evil. By spending many
years in penance and worship of Brahma, Ravana forced the great
god to repay him by making him invulnerable against all the gods,
and allowing him to assume any form or shape he desired.
advantage of this boon, Ravana declared war on the gods,
conquering them one after the other. He brought the captives back
to Lanka where they were forced to work as his menial servants.
For the time being the gods were unable to escape the archdemon's
power, and they had to perform humiliating tasks: Vayu, the god of
the winds, swept the house; Agni, god of fire, did the cooking;
Varuna, lord of the ocean, supplied water; Kuvera, god of wealth,
Eventually the gods escaped from their bondage,
but they could do nothing to punish the fiend. But Ravana knew
that in the end the gods would get their revenge, and he decided
that the only weapon that could save him from a permanent downfall
was immortality. Pretending humility, he went to Siva and began to
do penance, hoping that eventually the god would grant him his
wish. He stood on one of his ten heads, encircled by a ring of
fires, for one thousand years. He then cut off that head and stood
on another one, for another millennium. This went on until he was
about to cut off his last head. Then Siva spoke, asking him what
he desired. Three things, Ravana answered: Atmalingham, the sacred
phallus, for his mother; and for himself immortality and the most
beautiful woman in the universe. Siva had to grant him his wishes,
but he outsmarted the fiend on his journey back to Lanka and
forced him to give back the rewards. This defeat filled Ravana
with such rage that he decided to step up his war against the
In desperation the gods, knowing that none among them was
powerful enough to defeat the demon, called upon Vishnu the
Heavenly Father. After great deliberation, Vishnu cut himself into
quarters. Each separate part became a mortal, the strongest and
purest of whom would be chosen to slay Ravana. The segment of
Vishnu which developed into the purest being was Rama, whose life
and adventures are portrayed in the oldest and most famous of the
Sanskrit scriptures, the Ramayana. The following description of
Ravana, the archfiend, is taken from that book: 'Ravana had ten
heads, twenty arms, and copper-coloured eyes, and bright teeth
like the young moon. His form was as thick as a cloud or a
mountain, or the god of death with open mouth. He had all the
marks of royalty, but his body bore the impress of wounds
inflicted by all the divine arms in his warfare with the gods. He
was scarred by a thunderbolt of Indra, by the tusks of Indra's
elephant Airavata, and by the discus of Vishnu.
His strength was
so great that he could agitate the seas and split the tops of the
mountains. He was a breaker of all laws and a ravisher of other
men's wives...Tall as a mountain peak, he stopped with his arms
the sun and moon on their course, and prevented their rising. His
presence creates a fear so paralyzing, that wherever he travels,
the sun does not give out its heat, the winds do not blow and the
ocean becomes motionless.' Rama created a host of monkeys and
bears to fight by his side against the archfiend. They began the
battle by killing off large numbers of Rakshasas. At this Ravana
became so incensed that he abducted Rama's beautiful wife, Sita,
with whom the king of the demons had fallen in love. He hid Sita
on his island abode, and threatened to eat her if she didn't
become his wife. Sita refused persistently and managed to ward
Ravana off long enough for Rama to build a bridge across to Lanka.
Rama rescued Sita, and carried on the fight. Numerous battles were
waged on Lanka, where both adversaries were equal in strength.
Rama finally vanquished Ravana by shooting an arrow, which Brahma
had given him, through the demon's chest. The magic arrow pierced
the demon, came out at the other side of his body, and returned to
Rama's quiver. 'Ravana fell to the ground and expired, and the
gods sounded celestial music in heaven and assembled in the sky
and praised Rama as Vishnu, in that he had slain Ravana who would
otherwise have been their destruction.'
The demon of the tempests. He was supposed to be furious when the
rash voyager intruded on his solitude, ad to show his anger in the
winds and storms. The French peasants believed that a mysterious
little red man appeared to Napoleon to announce coming military
The demonic ambassador to Russia.
A great marquis and earl, appears in a monstrous form; he teaches
rhetoric and the arts, gives a good understanding, the knowledge
of tongues, and favour of friends and foes. Aka. Renove
Marquis and Count of Hell. He appears in the shape of a monster.
He provides his adepts with knowledge of languages and with the
goodwill of everyone. Nineteen infernal cohorts are under his
The prince of the demonic Order of Dominations.
A mighty marquis, appears in the form of an armed soldier, having
a lion's head, and riding on a pale-coloured horse. He builds
towers, camps and cities, fortifies the same, torments men with
putrid sores swarming with worms; he gives good familiars. Aka.
A great duke, who appears like a brave soldier, riding on a
crocodile crowned. He promotes love between the sexes.
For the Jews, Sammael is the prince of demons. In Rabbinical
legend he is a storm demon, and his name is linked with Samiel or
Simoon, which is the name of a desert wind. According to
tradition, Sammael was said to have been the highest throne-angel.
He was said to have twelve wings, which was twice the number of
wings of the Seraphim and other living creatures. According to the
Debarim Rabbi (xi), Sammael is the wicked angel who is the chief
of all the Satans.
It was Sammael (also associated with Satan)
who, under the guise of the serpent, tempted Eve in paradise.
According to chapters 13 and 14 of the Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer,
Satanís fall was mainly out of jealousy and envy on the part of
the angels. The angels were in opposition to the creation of man,
and were jealous that man was allowed to give names to all
creatures. They saw this act as proving that man was superior to
themselves. Sammael, who was the first of all the angel princes,
led a group of angels to earth in an attempt to conspire against
Adam, so that by his fall, they might again gain supremacy over
man. In the Bereshith Rabba (xix), the serpent was described as
possessing hands and feet and it resembled a camel. It also could
Sammael took possession of the serpent and thus deceived
Eve. Because of this act, the angels were cast out of heaven and
the feet of the serpent were cut off. 3 Baruch makes reference to
this event. The Greek version uses the name 'Samael' while the
Slavic text replaces the name with 'Satanael.' "And I said, 'I
pray you, show me which is the tree which caused Adam to stray.'
And the angel said, 'It is the vine which the angel Samael planted
by which the Lord God became angered, and he cursed him and his
planting. For this reason he did not permit Adam to touch it. And
because of this the devil became envious, and tricked him by means
of his vine.'" - 3 Baruch 4:8 (Greek) "And during the
transgression of the first Adam, she gave light to Samael when he
took the serpent as a garment, and did not hide, but on the
contrary, waxed." - 3 Baruch 9:7 (Greek) Sammael plays the role of
the accuser, seducer, and destroyer (and is identified with Satan
in some traditions).
Another example of the deeds of Sammael is
his role in the trial of Abraham. Sammael stood before God to
accuse Abraham of selfish piety. God decided to test Abraham by
asking him to sacrifice his son, Isaac. Sammael then tried to
persuade Abraham not to sacrifice Isaac, and also to persuade
Isaac to rebel against this trial. When he saw that Abraham would
not disobey God, he revenged himself by telling Sarah that Isaac
had been slain. She then died of her grief and terror. Sammael is
also a symbol of the 'venom of God.'
This title refers to his role
as executioner of the death sentences ordered by God, and links
him to the Angel of Death. In T.B. Abuda Zarah, Sammael is
represented as standing by a dying man with a drawn sword in his
hand. The point of the sword has a drop of gall on it. When the
dying man sees him, he is startled and opens his mouth. The drop
of gall then falls into his mouth and the man dies. In this
personification, Sammael is said to have brought about Moses'
death. According to the T.B. Baba Metzia (86a), the Angel of Death
did not fall but remains one of God's angels. Sammael also, as an
uncircumcised mate of Lilith, fathered a huge family of demons.
According to a fifteenth century story, a Spanish Kabbalist of
that era tried to gain power over Sammael by summoning him in the
name of God. When Sammael appeared in the form of a serpent, the
conjurer bound the demon by placing on his head a crown inscribed
with magic letters which spelled out: 'Thy Master's Name is upon
Thee.' But Sammael was not to be duped that easily. He cunningly
convinced the magician to burn incense to seal his victory. When
the conjurer obeyed, the demon was instantly freed from the spell,
as the burning of incense was an act of idolatry. In the
Kabbalistic tradition, Sammael is the chief of the ten evil
Sephiroth. He is said to fly through the air like a bird. The dark
blemishes on the moon's surface are supposed to be this
A brigadier general of the infernal legions.
A Hungarian demon, son of the witch Boszorkany. It is sadi she
could turn a person into a horse.
A general of the infernal legions.
A Duke of Hell. He is depicted as a liar and a thief.
A mighty prince under Amaymon, King of the East, appearing in the
form of a beautiful man on a strong winged horse. He brings all
things to pass suddenly, transports to any place in the twinkling
of an eye, and discovers all thefts. He is indifferently good or
bad, and will do the will of the operator.
Burmese demons. They dwell in trees and groves. Their nature is
usually malign, but occasionally we find them the tutelar or
guardian of a village. In any case, they possess shrines where
they may be propitiated by gifts of food and drink. Several of the
demoniac figures have almost achieved godhead, so widespread did
their cults become, and Hmin Nat, Chiton, and Winnein Nat, may be
instanced as fiends of power, the dread of which spread across
extensive district. Separ A great duke, who appears in red apparel
and armed like a soldier. He enflames women with love for men and
can transform them into other shapes till they have been enjoyed
by their lovers.
A great marquis, comes in the form of a stockdove, speaking with a
hoarse voice. He destroys the sight, hearing and understanding of
any man or woman at the will of the exorcist, steals money from
the king's exchequer and returns it in 1200 years. He will
transport anything, but first must be commanded into the triangle;
otherwise he will decieve the operator. He discovers all hidden
things which are not in the keeping of wicked spirits, and gives
A type of demon appearing to travellers as half a man.
A death bringing demon reigned in the waters of the North Sea, and
he was known to the ancient Scottish fishermen as Shony. Although
this creature was not commonly seen, he appeared as a man of large
stature, a thick shag of hair covering his head, and a ridge of
fins adorning his spine. He was greatly dreaded by all those who
had any dealings with the sea, be it fishermen or sailors on trade
vessels. When seamen fell overboard, no one tried to save them for
it was believed that Shony 'maun hae its nummer,' that is Shony
must have his annual quota of souls. He kept them imprisoned in
his castle made of jagged coral on the ocean floor. If by chance a
drowning man was given help, Shony would take the rescuer's life
and leave the drowning person to die on his own. Yearly sacrifices
were made to him. These consisted of selecting a person from the
crew, slitting his throat and throwing the body overboard. Viking
shipbuilders reddened the keels of their boats by binding a victim
on the logs upon which the boat was rolled to the water. They
hoped that Shony would be appeased by the sight.
In later times,
Shony was given the new name of Shellycoat, and he was sighted
mainly off the east coast of Scotland. He seemed by this time to
have taken on a less crude nature and became more of a prankster,
mimicking the shrieks of a drowning man. When anybody swam out to
save him, he burst into gales of laughter and dove underwater. Sir
Walter Scott wrote that when Shellycoat appeared on the shore 'he
seemed to be decked with marine productions and, in particular,
with shells whose clattering announced his approach. From this
circumstance he derived his name.'
Shui-mu Niang-niang was a Chinese water demon whose evil doings
caused yearly floods, claiming numerous lives and bringing famine
and desolation to the town of Ssu Chou and its surroundings. Her
power was so great that her cunning tricks triumphed over the
troops Yo Huang, the Lord of the Skies, had sent out against her.
The demoness, enraged by the repeated attempts to capture her,
kicked and turned over one of the magic buckets containing the
sources of the great lakes. The freed water engulfed the
unfortunate town of Ssu Chou, burying it for ever under a great
mass of water called the lake of Hung-tse. Now Yo Huangís patience
was exhausted, and he methodically organized her capture. Great
heroes and large armies pursued her relentlessly. One day, having
narrowly escaped after a furious race, Shui-mu stopped utterly
exhausted and famished. She caught sight of an old hag selling
bowls of freshly cooked noodles. Avidly she began to devour the
food, unaware that she had fallen into a trap. The old woman was
Kuan-yin Pusa, a good woman with great magical powers. In
Shui-muís stomach the noodles turned into iron chains, winding
around her entrails. The chain's end, protruding from her mouth,
welded itself to the noodles-turned-chains remaining in the dish.
Bound and powerless, the demon was led away to be fastened
securely at the bottom of a deep well, where she was to remain a
prisoner for all times. The people of that province say that the
end of the chain can be seen whenever the water level in the well
drops particularly low.
Siho I Salo
A demon from the Solomon Islands.
One of the demons who may be summoned by
Grand Prince of Hell. He appears in the shape of an owl. When he
assumes the shape of a man and appears before exorcists, he
teaches astronomy, prophecy based on the study of plants, and the
value of precious stones. He commands twenty-six legions.
In medieval European folklore, a female demon (or evil spirit) who
visits men in their sleep to lie with them in ghostly sexual
intercourse. The man who falls victim to a succubus will not
awaken, although may experience it in a dream. The male
counterpart is the incubus.
A demon who may be summoned and who will give a magic stone upon
A great prince, who appears with a leopard's head, but assumes a
human form at the Magician's command. He procures love between the
two sexes, and causes women to show themselves naked. Aka. Sitri,
In Hungarian folklore, the Szepasszony is a taboo word. It is the
name of the Fair Lady, a beautiful woman with long hair and a
white dress. She is a female demon who seduces young men and comes
out to dance in storms and hail showers. Noon is the hour when she
is the most powerful. Several expressions are associated with her.
To "step into the platter of the Fair Lady" means to fall under a
spell or one can describe a sick child as being "suckled by the
Fair Lady." Water dripping from the eaves forming a puddle
constitutes a platter by which the Fair Lady can cast a spell on
someone. It is considered dangerous to step into a circle of short
grass surrounded by taller grass or no grass at all, since it may
be the circle where the Fair Lady dances.
A Chinese devil of desire.
In Burma, the ghosts and spirits the villagers are most afraid of,
are an army of death-fiends known as the Tase. They are
disembodied souls of dead men and women who are both vampires and
spreaders of disease.
There are several different orders of Tase,
and each legion has its own way of torturing mortals. Thabet Tase
are the malignant spirits of women who have died during
childbirth, and these come back from the dead as succubi. The
demons make their appearance around twilight, lurking near the
dwellings of the villagers, and haunting men in particular. The
Thaye Tase are grotesque looking giants manifesting themselves
most frequently during the epidemics of smallpox and cholera. They
are the souls of those who died a violent death. Their greatest
pleasure is to materialize by the bedside of a dying person,
giggling and laughing hideously at their victim's agony.
Tase is the name of a third and lesser group of demons. These are
able to enter the bodies of certain animals such as crocodiles,
dogs, and tigers. Haunting the dwelling grounds of their past
existence, they wreak vengeance on anyone that crosses their path
for the misfortunes they themselves endured during life. Great
precautions are taken by the Burmese to ensure that the Tase do
not come back to haunt them. Often no gravestones are erected in
the hope that the dead, forgetting who they were in life, will now
haunt the house that was formerly theirs. Sacrifices, death
dances, and festivals are all attempted to appease the Tase. If
they do appear, the people make a din by beating pans or sides of
their houses, hoping that the loud noise will repel the fiends.
The Tengu is a Japanese demon mentioned in written sources going
as far back as the eighth century and in contemporary Japanese
chronicles. In early times the Tengu often manifested himself as a
crow, or as a man with a crow's beak.
In medieval times, haughty
and insincere Buddhist monks were said to be reborn as Tengu. In
the course of time the crow's beak of the demon gave way to a more
human looking shape; namely a large, round, red nose. But beak or
nose, the importance of this organ depends on its size, which is
directly proportional to the demonís powers. This relationship
allows any aware person to judge the strength of an attacking
Tengu at first sight, so that appropriate precautions can be
taken. Although human in form, the Tengu is a winged creature, his
fingers and toes ending in long and extremely sharp nails.
has often been seen by mountain people who claim that he fells
trees and flutters around cackling madly. He appears at times clad
in the shabby garb of a strolling monk, carrying a fan, a stick,
and a sword. He does not seem to have any definite predilection
for any particular evil deed, yet he appears to be quite an
imaginative character who is able to use just about any given
situation to commit his crimes. Some of his actions resemble the
mischief of the European poltergeist. He has also been known,
especially by the mountain people, to indulge in kidnappings. The
first instance of someone abducted by a Tengu swooping down from
the sky goes back to the fourteenth century. Even nowadays, when a
child is lost, the village people assemble to beat drums, calling
upon the Tengu to bring it back.
An Islamic demon that looks like a dragon.
The demonic ambassador to Spain.
A Polynesian head-ache demon, one of the two Ponaturi that managed
to escape Urutonga's revenge for the death of her husband. The
wife of Hema and mother of Tawhaki and Karihi. The Ponaturi,
semi-spirits, killed her husband but saved her, having her stay
outside the house. She hid her sons until nightfall when they saw
the Ponaturi arrive, flying in from the sea, thousands of them.
They all piled up in the house and went to sleep there. When no
more came, Urutonga told her sons to close every opening and crack
in the house. When they finished, dawn was approaching. The
Ponaturi chief asked Urutonga if it was dawn yet, but she replied
that it was not. This went on until the sun rose. Then the two
brothers opened the door of the house, and all the Ponaturi died
in the bright sun rays, except Kanae, who became a flying fish,
and Tonga-Hiti, the head-ache demon.
Typhon was a powerful Egyptian demon who stood in constant
opposition to the beneficent Osiris. This was during the time when
Osiris was a god of fertility (later he was brutally murdered, and
his soul became the just lord of the underworld.)
brought water to an arid tract of Egypt, Typhon made the greatest
effort to bring heat and drought. Typhon's consort, Nepthys,
fought against Isis, Osiris' wife. As the land of Egypt,
fertilized by the waters of the Nile, was the kingdom of Isis, so
the desert which lay beyond the influence of the river, remained
in the power of Nepthys.
Typhon was also
associated with the wind that came up from the Sahara, the
southern blast that destroyed everything that was vulnerable to
its heat. Thus, a forceful wind became called a typhoon. Typhon
was often depicted as a monster of enormous bulk. He had several
heads, wings sprouting from his shoulders, and his legs ended in a
tangle of serpents. Having imprisoned Osiris in an ark, he drove
Osiris' son, Horus, onto the island of Chemmis. There, he
compelled all the other deities to flee and save their lives or to
take refuge in the guise of various animals; these later became
sacred to the Egyptians in memory of the gods' transformations. At
the same time, all animals whose disposition was fierce or
untameable, such as the crocodile and the hippopotamus, came to be
known as Typhon's beasts. Typhon was finally conquered by Osiris,
who chased the monster to Sicily, and hurled him onto Mount Etna
which belches blood-red lava to this day.
A demon belonging to a lower order. He always appears with an
inflamed body. He is said to be the inventor of fireworks and the
art of frying foods. Beelzebub has assigned to him the task of
keeping oil in the infernal cauldrons.
An ancient Anatolian demon.
The doctor of the infernal regions who is responsible for the
health of the demons.
Babylonian spirit of disease. A legend related that this demon
once made up his mind to destroy all mankind. His counsellor,
Ishun, however, prevailed upon him to change his mind, and he
said, "Whoever will laud my name I will bless with plenty. No one
will oppose the person who proclaims the glory of my valour. The
worshipper who chants the hymn of praise to me will not be
afflicted by disease, and he will find favour in the eyes of the
King and his nobles."
In German mythology, another name for Satan as he presides over
A great president, comes as a little boy with the wings of an
angel and riding on a two headed dragon. He gives true answers
concernig hidden treasures, tells where serpent's may be seen, and
will deliver them helpless to the exorcist.
Duke of Hell in charge of brigands and robbers. He is depicted as
having the head of a thief and the body of a lion. He leads those
with whom he is familiar into theft. He shows friendship till they
are caught in the trap. Also called Valefor.
The Etruscan female demon of death who lives in the underworld.
With the eyes on her wings she sees all and is omni-present. She
is a herald of death and can assist a sick person on his deathbed.
Her attributes are a snake, torch and key.
A strong duke, comes in the form of a lion with a griffin's wings.
He gives skill not only in manual professions but also in
philosophy and the sciences.
A mighty prince, of the nature of Agares, who declares things
past, present and future, and discovers what has been lost or
hidden. He is good by nature.
An evil spirit who assaulted St. Margaret of Cortona (died 1297),
but was overcome by her. On being asked by St. Margaret who he was
and whence he came, he replied: "My name is Veltis, and I am one
of those whom Solomon by virtue of his spells, confined in a
copper cauldron at Babylon, but when the Babylonians, in the hope
of finding treasure dug up the cauldron and opened it, we all made
our escape. Since that time our efforts have been directed to the
destruction of righteous persons, and I have long been striving to
turn thee from the course thou hast embraced."
A great duke, appears as a mermaid. He guides the waters and
battleships, and occasions storms at sea when so commanded by the
Magician. He also causes the sea to seem full of ships, and
occasions death in three days by means of putreyfying sores and
Said to be a demon of the second order and master of ceremonies in
the house of the infernal princes. One of his responsibilities is
the transportation of witches to the Sabbat. He is also called
Master Persil or Sante-Buisson.
A great king and earl, appears in a monstrous form, but assumes
human shape when commanded. He discerns things hidden, reveals
witches, and makes known the past, present, and future. At the
command of the exorcist he will build towers, demolish walls, and
makes the waters stormy.
In Slavonic folklore, a Vodnik is a water demon who comes into
existence when a child is drowned. He lures people into the water
and hold them under until they suffocate. He appears as a fish or
as a human with green hair. In Russia he is called Vodjanoj.
A great duke, comes first as an enormous dromedary, but afterwards
assumes human form and speaks in the Egyptian tongue. He procures
the love of women, discerns past, present, and future, and excites
friendship even between foes. He was of the Order of Powers.
A Mayan demon of the underworld. He was the father of the giant
demons Kabrakan and Zipakna. He considered himself to be the sun,
the moon, and the light. For this reckless thought, and for the
part he played in the death or their father, the twins Hunahpu and
Ixbalangue descended to the underworld and killed him.
When Satan and his angels revolted against God, Xaphan joined
their ranks and was welcomed by them, for he had an inventive
mind. He advised Satan to set fire to Heaven but was thrown down
with the others. He is forever engaged in fanning the embers in
the furnaces of Hell. His emblem is a pair of bellows.
A demon of lies and legends.
In Hindu myth, Yakshas are chthonic semi-divine beings, half god
and half demon. They live under the earth in the Himalayas where
they guard the wealth of the earth (gems, gold, silver, etc.).
They are led by Kubera, the god of wealth. Like their leader, they
have all fat bellies and plump legs. They have no special
characteristics, are not violent, and are therefore called
punyajana ("good beings"). Kubera's epithet is Punyajaneshvara.
Clad in the robes of a Chinese judge, Yama presides over his
domain, Pitris, the Chinese hell. King over all the other demons
of the Orient, Yama assigns the relevant legion of demons to
torture either souls in hell or those on earth. He passes
judgement on those who have committed one of the Ten Deadly Sins,
while other secondary rulers in Pitris condemn souls of lesser
importance. He is flanked on either side of his throne by the
bodiless heads of two demons.
The female head is able to detect
the most secret flaws in the sinners who are brought in front of
Yama, while the male head is able to assess sins by smelling them.
Around Yama are assembled his multitude of 'eyes' called Tevodas,
who are the witnesses that testify to a person's sins. In Hindu
legend, Yama was the first mortal to die because he travelled down
the road from whence there is no return. He dwells in Pitris with
his wife Yami, who is his own sister.
The souls of the departed
are brought to Yama in crowds by Agni, the emanation of the
funeral pyre. After rushing past the enormous dogs which guard the
entrance to Pitris, the souls are relegated to the various levels
of hell. One Chinese legend says that, in the eyes of the
celestial gods, Yama was too compassionate to the worst of the
criminals brought in front of him, so he was demoted to govern
over the fifth region of hell in which rapists, prostitutes and
those who committed religious offences were punished. There the
sinners' chests are ripped open, their hearts tugged out and
chopped into morsels which the attendant demons quickly gobble.
A spirit supposed to cause diseases amongst Indians of British
Name of a demon said to have possessed a lay sister of Loudon,
France in 1633.
Grand Count of Hell. Depicted with a human head, crowned with a
ducal coronet, and the body of a crocodile. He is supposedly of a
Grand King and President of the infernal regions. He appears under
the form of a bull with the wings of a griffin. A demon of lies
and deceit, he changes water into wine, blood into oil, the fool
into a wiseman, lead into silver, and copper into gold. He
commands thirty legions.
One of the Kings of Hell
A dark god, monarch of the empire of the dead among the ancient
A Grand Duke of Hell who tempts men to commit sexual sins with
children. He has the form of a warrior. He commands twenty-eight
The lordly monarch of the northern regions of Hell.
In Sumero-Akkadian mythology, Zu is a divine storm-bird and the
personification of the southern wind and the thunder clouds. This
demon, half man and half bird, stole the "Tablets of Destiny" from
Enlil and hid them on a mountaintop. Anu ordered the other gods to
retrieve those tables, but all were afraid of this demon.
According to one text, Marduk killed the bird, but in another text
it died through the arrows of the god Ninurta. The bird is also
referred to as Imdugud or Anzu.