Cthulhu Mythos deities

Cthulhu Mythos deities

Writer H.P. Lovecraft created a number of fictional beings throughout the course of his literary career, including the Great Old Ones and the Outer Gods. The Elder Gods are a later creation of writer such as August Derleth, who is credited with forming the Cthulhu Mythos.[1][2]


Great Old Ones

The Great Old Ones are ancient and powerful extraterrestrial beings. Worshipped by deranged human cults, these beings are currently imprisoned (beneath the sea, inside the Earth, and in distant planetary systems) and apparently eagerly await the time of their release. Although Lovecraft did establish this premise in his 1928 novella The Call of Cthulhu with reference to the eponymous creature, it was Derleth who applied the notion to all of the Great Old Ones.

Table of Great Old Ones

This table is organized as follows:

  • Name. This is the commonly accepted name of the Great Old One.
  • Epithet(s), other name(s). This field lists any epithets or alternate names for the Great Old One. These are names that often appear in books of arcane literature, but may also be the names preferred by cults.
  • Description. This entry gives a brief description of the Great Old One.
  • References. This field lists the stories in which the Great Old One makes a significant appearance or otherwise receives important mention. Sources are denoted by a simple two-letter code from the Cthulhu Mythos reference codes and bibliography. A code appearing in bold means that the story introduces the Great Old One. If the code is given as comics or rpg it means that the Great Old One first appeared in the Call of Cthulhu Role playing Game or are mentioned/depicted in comics rather than novels. The code CtC instead means the Great Old One has been introduced in Cthulhu Cultus fanzine.
Great Old Ones
Name Epithet(s),
other name(s)
Description References
Ammutseba Devourer of Stars A dark, cloudy mass with tentacles which absorbs falling stars. LO, rpg
Aphoom-Zhah The Cold Flame,
Lord of the Pole
Appears much like Cthugha but grey, and cold. AF, HG, LP
Arwassa The Silent Shouter on the Hill A humanoid torso with tentacles instead of limbs, and a short neck ending in a toothless, featureless mouth. rpg
Atlach-Nacha The Spider God,
Spinner in Darkness
A giant spider with a human-like face. PS, AT,SG
Baoht Z'uqqa-Mogg The Bringer of Pestilence A huge, flying, scorpion with an ant-like head. rpg[3]
Basatan Master of the Crabs MC
B’gnu-Thun The Soul-Chilling Ice-God Appears as a cyanotic humanoid followed by an eerie blizzard. CC2, SS2
Bokrug The Great Water Lizard,
The Doom of Sarnath
Appears as a gigantic water lizard. DC, SC
Bugg-Shash[4] The Black One,
The Filler of Space,
He Who Comes in the Dark
Appears as a black, slimy mass covered in eyes and mouths, much like a Shoggoth. DI, EL, KB, RS
Byatis The Berkeley Toad,
Serpent-Bearded Byatis
Appears as a gigantic, multicoloured toad with one eye, a proboscis, crab-like claws, and tentacles below the mouth. BY, RC, SF
Chaugnar Faugn Horror from the Hills,
The Feeder,
A bipedal elephant with a mouth on the end of its trunk. HF, HM, FO, RH
Cthugha The Living Flame,
The Burning One
Appears as a living conflagration. DD, EL, HC, LM
Cthulhu The Sleeping God, Master of R'lyeh, The Great Priest, Kthulhut, Tulu, ZTHOOD'aLU A gigantic, bat-winged, octopus-headed humanoid. AM, BI, CC, FH, GU, HC, HM, LY, MO, PS, RH, SE, TU, YT?
Cthylla Secret Daughter of Cthulhu Appears as a huge, winged, octopus-like creature with six eyes. ID, TC
Cyäegha The Destroying Eye,
The Waiting Dark
Appears as a gigantic black mass of tentacles with a single green eye at the centre. DM
Cynothoglys The Mortician God, She Whose Hand Embalms Appears as a formless mound with one arm-like appendage. PR
The Dweller in the Gulf Eidolon of the Blind Appears as a huge, eyeless, black, soft-shelled tortoise with a triangular head and two whip-like tails, and suckers on the end of each tail. WL
Dygra The Stone-Thing A jewel-facetted, semi-crystalline entity, with geodic tentacles. CC2, SS2
Dythalla Lord of Lizards SS2
Eihort The Pale Beast,
God of the Labyrinth
Appears as a huge, pallid, gelatinous oval with a myriad legs and multiple eyes. BS, FP
E'ilor The Star-Seed A plant-like, parasitic horror dwelling on a jungle planet revolving around the green star Yifne and the dead star known as Baalblo (perhaps a white dwarf, a neutron star or another kind of stellar remnant). AE, CC2
Etepsed Egnis[5]
A formless monstrosity with a huge, arm-like appendage. CtC
Ghadamon A Seed of Azathoth A bluish-brown, slimy monstrosity riddled with holes, and an occasional malformed head. rpg
Ghatanothoa The Usurper,
God of the Volcano
An amorphous monstrosity with multifarious appendages and grotesque members; too horrid to behold, viewing causes petrification. HT, OE, RL, SX, TP
Ghisguth The Sound of the Deep Waters FT
Glaaki The Inhabitant of the Lake,
Lord of Dead Dreams
Appears as a giant three-eyed slug with metallic spines, and tiny, pyramid-like feet underneath. GL, IB, IL
Gi-Hoveg The Aether-Anemone A spiky, globular mass with myriads of eyes. CC2, SS2
Gloon The Corrupter of Flesh,
Master of the Temple, Glhuun
Usually manifests through a Dionysian sculpture, but its true form is that of a gigantic wattled slug-thing. rpg, TE
God of the Red Flux
Vaporous red entity. MW
Gog-Hoor Eater on the Insane A giant entity dwelling in some reverse dimension, resembling a huge bullet with a long proboscis AO
Gol-goroth Golgoroth,
The Forgotten Old One,
God of the Black Stone
Appears as a gigantic, black, toad-like creature with an impossibly malevolent glare, or a tentacled, scaled, bat-winged entity. FO, FR, GB
The Green God
A sentient plant-entity dwells in subterranean caverns where it is always served by mutant rabbit-like worshipers. HW2
Groth-Golka The Demon Bird-God A monstrous bird-like fiend with sharp teeth, dwelling beneath Antarctica, vaguely resembling an extinct Pterosaur FO
The consort of Othuyeg, very similar to his bridegroom. CtC
Haiogh-Yai The Outsider A monstrous, amorphous, whirling thing living on a wandering black hole named Vix’ni-Aldru, which also hosts a monstrous city made of titanic blocks at its center. CC2, SS2
Han The Dark One A being made of cold, howling mist, bound to Yig's worship SF
Hastalÿk The Contagion A microbial entity, responsible of plagues rpg
Hastur The Unspeakable,
He Who is Not to be Named,
Lord of Interstellar Spaces,
The King in Yellow
Hydra The Thousand-Faced Moon A vampiric entity living by absorbing the heads and brains of intelligent species. It dwells within an alien dimension outside conventional time and space. This entity is not to be confused with Mother Hydra, which is a Great Deep One servitor. HY
Hziulquoigmnzhah Ziulquag-Manzah Has spheroid body, elongated arms, short legs, and a pendulum-like head dangling underneath. DS, FT, TA
Ialdagorth[7] The Dark Devourer Cousin and servant of Azathoth, appears as black, shapeless, malevolent cloudy thing. It could be treated as an Outer God, since Azathoth's cousin. CtC
Idh-yaa Cthulhu's Mate, Xothic Matriarch Possibly similar to Cthulhu or Shub-Niggurath. OA
Iod The Shining Hunter A levitating, sinuous, glowing creature. HU, IN, SZ
Istasha Mistress of Darkness A feline deity similar to Bastet. Her sister is the sylvan Lythalia. SS2, SS4
Ithaqua The Wind Walker,
The Wendigo,
God of the Cold White Silence
A gigantic, corpse-like human with webbed feet and glowing red eyes. BW, CD, IM, IQ, SW, TW, WE
Juk-Shabb God of Yekub Appears as a great shining ball of energy. CF
Kag'Naru of the Air[8]
Mentioned in American comics "Challengers of the Unknown" (1977). Comics
Kassogtha Bride of Cthulhu, The Leviathan of Diseased A huge mass of coiled, writhing tentacles. She is Cthulhu's sister and mate, who bore him two twin daughters (Nctosa and Nctolhu) NH
Kurpannga The Devil-dingo A giant hairless dingo-like fiend living in Dreamland (or the Dreamtime of Aboriginal myths) DL
Lu-Kthu Birth-womb of the Great Old Ones A titanic, planet-sized mass of entrails and internal organs. On closer examination it appears a wet, warty globe, covered with countless ovoid pustules and spider-webbed with a network of long, narrow tunnels. Each pustule bears the larva of a Great Old One. CC2
Lythalia The Forest-Goddess SS2
M'Nagalah[9] The Devourer A mass of entrails and eyes, or a massive blob-thing. TU
Mnomquah Lord of the Black Lake, The Monster in the Moon A very large and eyeless lizard-creature with a "crown" of feelers. MD, MQ, SB
Mordiggian The Charnel God,
The Great Ghoul,
Lord of Zul-Bha-Sair
A shapeshifting cloud of shadow. CG, IC, RE
Narrathoth The Forgotten DC2, NF2
Nctosa & Nctolhu The Twin Spawn of Cthulhu Twin daughters of Cthulhu, imprisoned on Jupiter. They appear as huge shell-endowed beings, with eight segmented limbs and six long arms ending with claws, vaguely resembling their "step-sister" Cthylla. NH
Ngirrth’lu The Wolf-Thing, The Stalker in the Snows, He Who Hunts, Na-girt-a-lu A ferocious and towering wolf-like humanoid with bat wings. He is served by werewolf servants known as the Lupine Ones. SS2
Nug and Yeb The Twin Blasphemies Somewhat like Shub-Niggurath. BF, EH, LA, OA, TO
A blurry, dark, kraken-like entity mentioned in the Song of Yste. AB
Nyogtha The Thing which Should Not Be,
Haunter of the Red Abyss
Appears as an inky shadow. AF, HG, SH, SR
Oorn Mnomquah's Mate Appears as a huge, tentacled mollusc. MD
Othuum The Oceanic Horror A twisting, ropy-tentacled mass with a single alien face somewhere in the center of the slimy squirming mass. RS, OT
Othuyeg The Doom-Walker Appears as a great, tentacled eye (similar to Cyäegha). DF, VC, SP
Pharol Pharol the Black A black, fanged, cycloptic demon with arms like swaying serpents.[10] The entity normally dwells in another dimension—a "seething and sub-dimensional chaos" beyond the mundane universe.[11] The wizard Eibon of Hyperborea sometimes summoned Pharol to query him for arcane information.[12] AF
Quachil Uttaus Treader of the Dust Appears as a miniature, wrinkled mummy with stiff, outstretched claws. KU, RU
Quyagen[13] He Who Dwells Beneath Our Feet Worshiped as deity in a lost continent located in southern Atlantic Ocean. CtC
Q'yth-az The Crystalloid Intellect A towering mass of crystals, residing on the lightless planet Mthura. EF
A shark-like humanoid native to the Bermuda Triangle, possibly similar to Cthulhu's avatar the Father of All Sharks. FD
Ragnalla Seeker in the Skies A titanic raptorial fiend. CC2, SS2
Rhan-Tegoth Terror of the Hominids, He of the Ivory Throne A three-eyed, gilled, proboscidian monster with a globular torso, six long, sinuous limbs ending in black paws with crab-like claws, and covered in what appears to be hair, but is actually tiny tentacles. HM, AF, LT, RR, PD
Rhogog The Bearer of the Cup of the Blood of the Ancients A dead-black leafless oak tree, hot to the touch, with a single red eye at the centre. RG
Rh'Thulla of the Wind[14]
Mentioned in American comics "Challengers of the Unknown" (1977). Probably similar to M'Nagalah the Eternal Comics
Rlim Shaikorth The White Worm A gigantic, whitish worm with a huge maw and eyes made of dripping globules of blood. CW, HG, LP
Ruhtra Dyoll The Fire God CC2, SS2
Saa'itii The Hog A gigantic, ghostly hog. H5
Sebek The Crocodile God A crocodile-headed reptilian humanoid, equal to the Ancient Egyptian god Sebek. EK
Shathak Mistress of the Abyssmal Slime, Death Reborn - FT
Shudde M'ell The Burrower Beneath,
The Great Chthonian
Appears as a colossal worm with tentacles for a head. BU, CS, TC, WU
Shuy-Nihl The Devourer in the Earth A dark blob of darkness endowed with tentacles. CC2, SS2
Summanus Monarch of Night,
The Terror that Walketh in Darkness
A mouthless, grotesque human with pale tentacles protruding from underneath a dark robe. FH, WG
Tharapithia The Shadow in the Crimson Light Slavic and Ugric God-like creature, photophobic and burrowing fiend awed in Middle Ages. It cannot endure the light of the sun and eludes it by tunnelling deep under the roots of the oaks. CL2
Tsathoggua The Sleeper of N'kai,
The Toad-God,
Zhothaqqua, Sadagowah
Appears as a huge, furry, almost humanoid toad, or a bat-like sloth. BC, DS, FT, IU, OL, RT, SG, TS
Ut'Ulls-Hr'Her The Great Horned Mother A huge faceless creature with various appendages sprouting from its head, a beard of oozing horns, and many reddish teats and fish-like fins sprouting from an egg-shaped body. NH
Uvhash The Blood-Mad God of the Void A colossal, vampiric, red mass of tentacles and eyes, rumoured to have been one of mad emperor Caligola's eldritch sponsors. AD
Vhuzompha Mother and Father to All Marine Life, The Hermaphroditic God An amorphous monster of prodigious size, covered in a multitude of eyes, mouths, projections and both male and female genitalia. CC2, SS2
Vibur The Thing from Beyond A huge furry and rapidly shifting entity casting radioactive stones. rpg
Volgna-Gath Keeper of the Secrets Not described. SS2
Vulthoom The Sleeper of Ravermos,
May appear as a huge, unearthly plant. VU
The Worm that Gnaws in the Night Doom of Shaggai A massive, worm-like fiend, similar to a Graboid from Tremors. AG
Xa'ligha Demon of Dissonance, Master of Twisted Sound A haunting sound leading to madness and self-destruction. Perhaps similar to Tru'Nembra. CC2
Ycnagnnisssz Lord of Realms Unknown A black, festering amorphous mass. rpg
Yegg-Ha The Faceless One A 10 foot-tall winged being. IE
Y'golonac The Defiler Appears as a naked, obese, headless human with a mouth in the palm of each hand; other features are nebulous. CP
Yhashtur[15] The Worm-God of the Lords of Thule A worm-like monster. CtC
Yhoundeh The Elk Goddess DS, LE
Yig Father of Serpents A giant snake with human arms covered in scales. CY, SJ, VY
Y'lla Master of the Seas A monstrous, barrel-shaped sea worm with tentacles and lamprey-like mouth. CC2
Ythogtha The Thing in the Pit, Shaurash-Ho[16] Appears as a colossal Deep One, with tentacles surrounding its one eye. OA, PD, TC, TP
Zathog The Black Lord of Whirling Vortices A festering, bubbling mass that constantly churns and whirls, putting forth vestigial appendages and reabsorbing them. Bubbles burst on its surface to reveal hate-filled eyes, and slobbering mouths form and close randomly about his horrible body. FB, WZ
Zhar and Lloigor The Twin Obscenities Both appear as a colossal mass of tentacles, although Lloigor has wings (have a rumoured triplet). SA, LS, TP, SX
Zoth-Ommog Dweller in the Depths A gigantic entity with a cone-shaped body, a reptilian head, a beard of tentacles, and starfish-like arms. HG, OA, TC
Zstylzhemghi Matriarch of Swarms,
Perhaps a swarm of insects. FT, TA
Zushakon Dark Silent One,
Old Night,
Appears as a swirling, black vortex. BH, KD
Zvilpogghua Feaster from the Stars,
The Sky-Devil,
A bat-winged, armless toad with tentacles instead of a face. LT, RM, SV

In Joseph Pulver's novel Nightmare's Disciple several new Great Old Ones and Elder Gods are named. The novel mentions Ob'mbu the Shatterer; T'ith and Xu'bea, The Teeth of the Dark Plains of Mwaalba. Miivls and Vn'Vulot, are said to have fought each other in southern Gondwanaland during the Cretaceous period.[17]

Outer Gods

The Outer Gods are ruled by Azathoth, the "Blind Idiot God", who holds court at the center of the universe. A group of Outer Gods dance rhythmically around Azathoth, in cadence to the piping of a demonic flute. Among the Outer Gods present at Azathoth's court are Lesser Outer Gods, the entities called "Ultimate Gods" in The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath, and possibly Shub-Niggurath, the "Black Goat of the Woods". Yog-Sothoth, the "All-in-One", co-rules with Azathoth and exists at all places and in all times in the cosmos, yet is somehow locked outside the mundane universe. Nyarlathotep, the "Crawling Chaos", is the avatar and soul of the Outer Gods, and serves as an intermediary between the deities of the pantheon and their cults. The only Outer God to have a true personality, Nyarlathotep possesses a malign intellect and reveals a mocking contempt for his masters.[18]

List of Outer Gods


See Clark Ashton Smith deities.


Azathoth (The Blind Idiot God, Him in the Gulf, Seething Nuclear Chaos, The Daemon Sultan) is the ruler of the Outer Gods. It appears as a vast, swirling, shapeless mass.

 AZ, BU, EL, HY, IS, IT, LN, MY, NT, PA, PS, SE 

The Blackness from the Stars

The Blackness from the Stars is an immobile blob of living, sentient darkness, torn from the primal fabric of the cosmos at the center of the universe. It is distinguishable in darkness only as vaguely shimmering oily pitch. Although intelligent, it speaks no known language and ignores attempts to communicate.


The Cloud-Thing

A man-eating, cloudy mass, unnamed Outer God at the court of Azathoth.



Cxaxukluth (Androgynous Offspring of Azathoth) is one of the Seeds or Spawn of Azathoth, grown to adulthood and monstrous proportions and power. In appearance, Cxaxukluth resembles something of a cross between Azathoth and Ubbo-Sathla: an amorphous, writhing mass of bubbling, nuclear protoplasmic gel. It normally dwells alone in some unnamed place beyond time and space, unless disturbed or summoned away.



See Ramsey Campbell deities.


See Ramsey Campbell deities.

The Hydra

See Henry Kuttner deities.

Lesser Outer Gods

The Lesser Outer Gods (Guardians of the Outer Hells, The Other Gods) are mysterious protectors of the Dreamlands' gods, the weak Great Ones. To disturb them or the Great Ones is foolish and is often disastrous. They are at the sway of Azathoth in his hyperdimensional court, which they rarely leave, forever piping and dancing to incomprehensible tunes. Lesser Outer Gods mentioned in Call of Cthulhu roleplay game guide are L'ysh (a festering and decayed mass of limbs and corpse-like bodies formed into a great dripping column of writhing death), Nour (a giant mass of tentacles, tendrils, pseudopods and pincers), Pr'ktha (glowing giant mass of incandescent yellow-white phosphorus), Shinjh (a writhing mass of long, flat, cactus pad-like tendrils, spiked with needle-like spines sprouting from a main trunk), Thahash (a mastodontic horror with three enormous buffalo-like heads with mouths full of shark-like teeth), Urafty (a mass of coiled tentacles each tipped with an elongated bulb that swallow whatever it encounters), Yko (an enormous, floating jellyfish with a pulsating translucent sack, flashing with bolts of strange-coloured light). One of the most peculiar since having not a fictional name but an alphanumeric string is X-2634, a mass of sentient gas, named by some forgotten astronomer who mistook it for a comet. In Earth's atmosphere it manifests as a billowing, ghostly cloud, while in space it takes on the form of a tight ball.



An invisible wolf-like fiend similar to Fenrir of Norse mythology (if not coincident). Mh'ithrha (Arch-Lord of Tindalos) is the lords of the Hounds of Tindalos and the most powerful. Although not an actual Outer God as such, its form and awesome powers defy standard classification. Mh'ithra's eternal battle with Yog-Sothoth is said to be legendary..


Mother of Pus

A Lesser Outer God composed of slime, tentacles, eyes, and mouths. The Mother of Pus was spawned through an obscene mating between a human and Shub-Niggurath. When summoned to Earth, the Mother of Pus seeks refuge in pools of stagnant, foul water.


The Nameless Mist

The Nameless Mist (Nyog' Sothep?) is a misty, shapeless thing, also it has no name.

 AS, SF, HF, S2, WD 


Nyarlathotep (The Crawling Chaos, Messenger to Azathoth, The Three-Lobed Burning Eye, The Black Man, and other epithets) usually appears as a handsome, dark-skinned, male human.

 AP, BU, DD, DQ, DW, EB, EL, FG, FY, HD, IK, KD, LT, MK, NY, SD, WU, YG 


Shabbith-Ka appears as a shapeless, roughly man-sized purplish aura, spitting and crackling with powerful electrical arcs. A sense of power, malignancy, and intelligence accompanies it and persons able to gaze at its form long enough can see a rudimentary face or faces within the glowing mass.



Shub-Niggurath (The Black Goat of the Woods with a Thousand Young, Wife of the Not-to-Be-Named One) appears as a black cloudy mass, rippling with mouths, tentacles and short, goatlike legs.

 DK, DR, LA, OE, SJ, SS, TC 

Star Mother

The Star Mother appears as a chunk of yellow-green stone about the size of an infant. Its shape suggests a plump, huge-breasted, faceless female figure. From it extend dozens of pencil-thin root-like strands. It is one of the Larvae of the Other Gods and has no cult, although served by zombie slaves.



Tru'nembra (The Angel of Music) is the name given in Malleus Monstrorum Call of Cthulhu roleplay game guide to the entity described in Howard Philips Lovecraft's novel "The Music of Eric Zahn". It has no shape, but manifests as a haunting music.



A blazing green ball of flame, dancing with brethren Outer Gods at the court of Azathoth. Called to our world, it assumes a gaseous form, penetrates the planet to the core, then erupts from below as a pillar of flame. It cannot move from where it emerges.



See Clark Ashton Smith deities.


Ycnàgnnisssz is a black, festering, amorphous mass that constantly blasts and erupts violently, spewing out bits of churning lava-like material. It spawned the Great Old One Zstylzhemgni by fission.



A gigantic, bat-winged humanoid with detached eyes, wearing a green robe. This horrible deity sees all time and space as it slowly rotates in the centre of its clearing in the 'Jungle of Kled', in Earth‘s Dreamlands. Beneath its billowing cloak are a multitude of nightgaunts, suckling and clutching at her breasts. She has close connection to the Great Old One Bugg-Shash.

 SC, OK, CB 


Yidhra (The Dream Witch) usually appears as a youthful, attractive, earthly female, though her shape may vary.

Yidhra has been on Earth since the first microorganisms appeared and is immortal. To survive in a changing environment, she gained the ability to take on the characteristics of any creature that she devoured. Over time, Yidhra split herself into different aspects, though each part shares her consciousness.

Yidhra is served by devoted cults found in such widely separated places as Burma, Chad, Laos, Sumer, New Mexico, and Texas. Members of Yidhra's cult can gain immortality by merging with her, though they become somewhat like Yidhra as a consequence. Those who serve her are also promised plentiful harvests and healthy livestock. She usually conceals her true form behind a powerful illusion, appearing as a comely young woman; only favored members of her cult can see her as she actually is.

One of her avatar is Madam Yi, appearing as a human female dressed in beautiful white and black robes which constantly billow on some unseen wind, on which she may hover or fly. Her beautiful face is like the painted face of a porcelain doll and her bloodred lips and closed almond-shaped black eyes are forever frozen on a smooth and bone-white face. Long black hair is braided into a single ponytail. The avatar’s hands both end in very long, razor-like black fingernails




Yog-Sothoth (The Lurker at the Threshold, The All-in-One, The Beyond One, Opener of the Way, The Key other epithets) appears as a conglomeration of glowing bubbles. 'He' is the 'father' of Dunwich's Wilbur Whateley and his brother.

 CA, DH, GM, HA, HG, IU, JG, LT, OC, PY, TC, TG, WZ 


Yomagn’tho (The Feaster from the Stars, That Which Relentlessly Waits Outside) is a malevolent being who wishes nothing more than the destruction of mankind for unknown reasons. It waits in its home dimension of Pherkard until it is summoned to Earth. When first summoned, Yomagn’tho appears as a small ball of fire that quickly expands to a large circle of fire with three flaming inner petals.


Elder Gods

In post-Lovecraft stories, the Elder Gods oppose the Outer Gods and the Great Old Ones. Some consider them to be non-Lovecraftian because they employ a good versus evil dichotomy which is contrary to the cosmic indifference of Lovecraft's fiction. However, these deities are no more concerned for human notions of "good" and "evil" than the beings they oppose and consider humans to be less than fleas, although they can be sympathetic to humanity on occasion and their interests usually coincide with humanity's own.

A notable attempt to harmonize the good versus evil dichotomy with cosmic indifference was made by Gary Myers in his collection of Dreamlands fantasies, The House of the Worm (1975). According to Myers, the Elder Gods are identical to the mild gods of earth who figure in Lovecraft's "The Other Gods" (1921) and The Dream Quest of Unknown Kadath (1927). These gods found the Great Old Ones already asleep, and were so terrified at the sight of them that they wove powerful spells over them to try to prevent their waking. But the passage of time has weakened both the spells and the gods who wove them, and it is doubtful that either will have much power to put off the hour of the Great Old Ones' return.

The main "Elder God" used by Lovecraft is Nodens, who acts as deus ex machina for the protagonists in both The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath and "The Strange High House in the Mist" (1931). In this regard, he functions like Lovecraft's Nyarlathotep, although Nodens is obviously less malicious. It is also speculated that Bast, the Egyptian goddess of cats, qualifies as an Elder God due to Lovecraft's feline obsession and because of hints given in Lovecraft's "The Cats of Ulthar" (1920). The story "Imprisoned with the Pharaohs" suggests that the gods of Egypt are Elder Gods, and several are named.



Bast (Goddess of Cats or Pasht) appears as a female human with a cat's head.

 BR, MA, SU 

Bastet is the name commonly used by scholars today to refer to a feline goddess of Ancient Egyptian religion who was worshipped at least since the Second Dynasty. Her name is also spelled Bast, Baast, Ubasti and Baset.[1]

The town of Bastet's cult (see below) was known in Greek as Boubastis (Βούβαστις). The Hebrew rendering of the name for this town is Pî-beset ("House of Bastet"), spelled without Vortonsilbe.[2]

What the name of the goddess means remains uncertain.[2] One recent suggestion by Stephen Quirke (Ancient Egyptian Religion) explains it as meaning "She of the ointment jar". This ties in with the observation that her name was written with the hieroglyph "ointment jar" (bȝs) and that she was associated with protective ointments, among other things.[2] Originally she was viewed as the protector goddess of Lower Egypt. As protector, she was seen as defender of the pharaoh, and consequently of the later chief male deity, Ra, who was also a solar deity, gaining her the titles Lady of Flame and Eye of Ra.

Her role in the pantheon became diminished as Sekhmet, a similar lioness war deity, became more dominant in the unified culture of Lower and Upper Egypt.[citation needed]

In the first millennium BC, when domesticated cats were popularly kept as pets, Bastet began to be represented as a woman with the head of a cat and ultimately emerged as the Egyptian cat-goddess par excellence.[3] In the Middle Kingdom, the domestic cat appeared as Bastet’s sacred animal and after the New Kingdom she was depicted as a woman with the head of a cat or a lioness, carrying a sacred rattle and a box or basket.[4] Bast is often Mentioned in the Necronomicon. In the temple at Per-Bast some cats were found to have been mummified and buried, many next to their owners. More than 300,000 mummified cats were discovered when Bast's temple at Per-Bast was excavated. The main source of information about the Bast cult comes from Herodotus who visited Bubastis around 450 BC during the heyday of the cult. He equated Bastet with the Greek Goddess Artemis. He wrote extensively about the cult. Turner and Bateson suggest that the status of the cat was roughly equivalent to that of the cow in modern India. The death of a cat might leave a family in great mourning and those who could would have them embalmed or buried in cat cemeteries - pointing to the great prevalence of the cult of Bastet. Extensive burials of cat remains were found not only at Bubastis, but also at Beni Hasan and Saqqara. In 1888, a farmer uncovered a plot of many hundreds of thousands of cats in Beni Hasan.[9]



See Brian Lumley deities.


Nodens (Lord of the Great Abyss) appears as a human male riding a huge seashell pulled by legendary beasts.

 DQ, GM, HW , NE, PN, HH 


Ulthar (or Uldar) is a deity sent to Earth to hold vigil over the Great Old Ones.

 GC, SX 


Vorvadoss* (The Flaming One, Lord of the Universal Spaces, The Troubler of the Sands, Who Waiteth in the Outer Dark) appears as a cloaked, hooded being, enveloped in green flames, with fiery eyes. He may otherwise appear as a misty, silvery being not unlike Tawil-at-U'mr with an inhuman face. His powers where many including levitation, telekinesis, and even the ability to change form to whatever he pleased, truly a master of the dark arts and a force to be reckoned with.

 EA, IN, AE, WH 


See Brian Lumley deities.

From Imprisoned with the Pharaohs

The short story Imprisoned with the Pharaohs does make use of the actual words "elder gods", and its use in that story implies that the various gods of Egypt are among these elder gods. However, only a few are mentioned by name throughout the story: Amen, Anubis, Horus, Isis, Osiris, Re and Re-Harakhte.


See also


  1. ^ Bloch, "Heritage of Horror", p. 8.
  2. ^ Price, "H. P. Lovecraft and the Cthulhu Mythos", Crypt of Cthulhu #35, p. 5.
  3. ^ Scott D. Aniolowski, "Mysterious Manuscripts" in The Unspeakable Oath #3, John Tynes (ed.), Seattle, WA: Pagan Publishing, August 1991. Periodical (role-playing game material). Baoht Z'uqqa-Mogg first appeared in this gaming supplement.
  4. ^ When Brian Lumley read David Sutton's short story "Demoniacal", he wrote a sequel entitled "The Kiss of Bugg-Shash". Lumley expanded Sutton's tale and gave his unnamed entity its name—Bugg-Shash—which effectively tied Sutton's creation to the mythos. (Price, "Introduction", The New Lovecraft Circle, pp. xx–xxi). The name "Bugg-Shash", however, appeared earlier in Lumley's short story "Rising with Surtsey" (Harms, "Bugg-Shash", Encyclopedia Cthulhiana, p. 41).
  5. ^ He is first mentioned in Dawid Lewis' short novel "Etepsed Egnis" and cited again in Cthulhu Cultus #11, in the novel A Core Unto Itself.
  6. ^ He is mentioned in the Cthulhu Cultus #9-11, in the novel People of the Monolith.
  7. ^ He is mentioned in the Cthulhu Cultus #10, in the novel Servants of the Coil.
  8. ^ Kag'Naru of the Air and Rh'Thulla of the Wind are mentioned in the comic book Challengers of the Unknown #83 (which also added "the Eternal" to M'Nagalah's name).
  9. ^ M'Nagalah first appeared in the comic book Swamp Thing #8 (1974) in a story by Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson (Harms, "M'nagalah", Encyclopedia Cthulhiana, p. 196). The being has since shown up in stories in Challengers of the Unknown, The Trenchcoat Brigade, and The All-New Atom. His siblings, Rh’Thulla of the Wind and Kag’Naru of the Air, debuted in Challengers of the Unknown #83 (which also added "the Eternal" to M'Nagalah's name).
  10. ^ Carter, "Shaggai", The Book of Eibon, p. 206.
  11. ^ Carter, "Shaggai", The Book of Eibon, 207.
  12. ^ Harms, "Pharol", p. 238, The Encyclopedia Cthulhiana. Daniel Harms believes that Pharol was invented by C. L. Moore, Henry Kuttner's wife, since the being appears in many of her stories.
  13. ^ He is mentioned in the Cthulhu Cultus #7, in Crispin Burnham's People of the Monolith.
  14. ^ Kag'Naru of the Air and Rh'Thulla of the Wind are mentioned in the comic book Challengers of the Unknown #83 (which also added "the Eternal" to M'Nagalah's name).
  15. ^ He is mentioned in the Cthulhu Cultus #10, in the novel Servants of the Coil.
  16. ^ According to correspondence between Lovecraft and fellow author James F. Morton[citation needed], Cthulhu's parent is the deity Nug, itself the offspring of Yog-Sothoth and Shub-Niggurath. Lovecraft includes a fanciful family tree in which he himself descends from Cthulhu[citation needed] via Shaurash-ho, Yogash the Ghoul, K'baa the Serpent, and Ghoth the Burrower.
  17. ^ Pulver, "Nightmare's Disciple"
  18. ^ Harms. The Encyclopedia Cthulhiana, "Azathoth", pp. 16; "Nyarlathotep", pp. 218; "Shub-Niggurath", pp. 275; "Tulzscha", pp. 304; Yog-Sothoth, p. 346.

Great Ones

The Great Ones are the "weak gods of earth" that reign in the Dreamlands. They are protected by Nyarlathotep.


Great Ones
Name Description References
Hagarg Ryonis,
The Lier-in-Wait
Usually appears as a huge, reptilian monster. DL, WH
Karakal An elf-like humanoid. DL, WH
Lobon Appears as ivy-crowned youth bearing a spear. DC, DL, WH
Nath-Horthath Chief god of Celephaïs. CE, DL, DQ, KA
Oukranos River god DQ
Tamash Appears as a short, silver-skinned, ebon-haired, and bearded man. DC, DL, MG, WH
Zo-Kalar God of birth and death. DC, WH


  • Harms, Daniel (1998). "Heritage of Horror". The Encyclopedia Cthulhiana (21nd edition ed.) (21st ed. ed.). Oakland, CA: Chaosium. ISBN ISBN 1-56882-119-0. 
  • Lovecraft, Howard (1982). The Best of H. P. Lovecraft: Bloodcurdling Tales of Horror and the Macabre (1st edition ed.) (1st ed. ed.). Ballantine Books. ISBN ISBN 0-345-35080-4. 
  • Price, Robert M. (1996). The New Lovecraft Circle. New York, N.Y.: Random House. ISBN ISBN 0-345-44406-X. 
  • Thompson, C. Hall (1946). Spawn of the Green Abyss (3rd ed. ed.). Robert M. Price, Fedogan & Bremer, 1992. ISBN 1-878252-02-X. 
  • Myers, Gary (1975). "Xiurhn". The House of the Worm. Sauk City, WI: Arkham House. ISBN 0-97899-113-3. 
  • Pulver, Joseph S. (1999). Nightmare's Disciple. Chaosium. ISBN 1568821182. 

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