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This page is dedicated to the beings referred to as "Elder Gods" in the context of Earth.
For other beings known as "Elder Gods", on Earth or elsewhere, please consult the "Elder Gods" glossary page.

Born from the Demiurge, the Earth's Elder Gods were purportedly its first lifeforms. Nearly all of them became demons, and in a war among themselves, they were purged by the God-Eater Demogorge.[7][8] A few are known to have survived the culling: Set, Chthon, Gaea, Oshtur, etc. The demonic Set and Chthon fled to other dimensions to escape the Demogorge's wrath. Banished from Earth, they seek to return but are opposed by Gaea and Oshtur, the two who were never corrupted.[9]

Additionally, five Elder Gods dwell in Utgard: the Utgard-Loki, Toranos, Kemur, Mejed, and Nrgl. They have been sealed there since the Elder God culling, but Gaea recently opened the gate to Utgard.[5]


Origins and early years[]

Demiurge Primordial (Earth-616) and Elder Gods of Earth from Immortal Thor Vol 1 5 001

Demiurge Primordial spawning the Elder Gods

The Elder Gods are incredibly powerful ethereal beings with vast mystic powers. They were spawned by the Demiurge's energies soon after the Earth's formation, roughly 4 billion years ago.[7][8][10]

Curious about the stars, the Elder Goddess Oshtur left Earth ten of thousands of years before the conflict that would erupt among the Elder Gods.[11]

Degeneration and the Godwar[]

Atum (Earth-616), Chthon (Earth-616), and Set (Earth-616) from Silver Surfer Annual Vol 1 2 001

Chthon and Set escaping the Demogorge

During the Godwar, the Elder Gods battled endlessly to claim what their siblings possessed, ravaging the Earth and prevententing even the sturdiest of Gaea to survive.[5]

Set discovered that he could increase his own powers by eating his fellow Elder Gods and he became the Earth's first murderer; however, the process caused him to degenerate into a demon. Most of the other Elder Gods, with the exception of Gaea (and Oshtur who was off-world), began to imitate him and became demons themselves to further their own strength. Horrified, Gaea called upon the Demiurge to produce her a savior that could wipe out the Elder God demons: Atum. Absorbing the demons' powers into his own body, Atum became the Demogorge and wiped out almost all the demons, except Chthon and Set who escaped to other dimensions (the Flickering Realms and the Serpent's Sea).[8]

Utgard-Loki (Earth-616) from Immortal Thor Vol 1 8 001

The Utgard-Loki giving Gaea the key to his realm

A scant few other Elder Gods survived. Tiwaz left the Earth to wander. Meanwhile, the Utgard-Loki (like Set and Chthon) escaped to his own realm, Utgard. Also, united against a common foe, he was joined by four other Elder Gods: Toranos, Kemur, Mejed, and Nrgl. The Utgard-Loki then created a gate and gave his sister Gaea the key, in case she would ever wish to release them.[5]

When Oshtur returned to Earth, she discovered what happened to her kin. Similar to how Set and Chthon created their own realms, Oshtur and Gaea also made planes for themselves: the Astral Plane and Avalon, respectively. The four Elder Gods set aside their differences to create the Crossroads as neutral ground.[12][11] Agreements were made between the four of them, including restrictions to direct interference to the others' activities.[13]

The Nethergods, including Necromon and Mandrac, were possibly degenerate Elder Gods.[14]

According to the Darkhold, one million years ago, Chthon led a group of evil gods in a war against a benevolent faction, but was sealed away alongside his army by his victorious opponents.[15]

Ancient Times[]

In ancient times Thor and Loki were wandering near the River Vimur when a gateway to Utgard appeared. The two went through and were met by Utgard-Loki as "Skrymir", who led them to Utgardhall. Once there, he greeted them as himself and tested them to see if their people were worthy of life.[16]

Modern days[]

Of the survivors, Gaea currently resides within the Earth itself and is known as "Mother Nature"; Oshtur formed the Vishanti to assist Earth's Sorcerer Supreme; and Chthon and Set reside in their own dimensions but they still exert influence through their followers and artifacts (such as the Darkhold and the Serpent Crown).[7]

Chthon tricked Ian McNee into gathering the Cornerstones of Creation,[17] and was nearly reborn though Victoria Montesi and almost unleashed by Carnage.[18]

Gaea decided that humanity had stagnated and decided to release her siblings from Utgard to force change upon them.[5] Toranos was the first to emerge, attacking Thor and New York City,[19] but he fled when Thor forced a conscience upon him.[10]

Powers and Abilities


The Elder Gods originally had no physical or true appearance. Doctor Strange theorized that as humans came to know the Elder Gods, they began depicting as possessing a physical form, which caused the Elder Gods to inadvertently adopt these forms.[20]



Originally Earth. Eventually, four of the surviving Elder Gods created Inner Planes for themselves.[12][11]

In addition, the four of them created the Crossroads to meet as "neutral grounds."[12][11]

The Utgard-Loki's realm is Utgard. Uniting to escape the Demogorge, several Elder Gods joined him there, namely Toranos, Kemur, Mejed, and Nrgl.[5]


Level of Technology

Cornerstones of Creation from Marvel Tarot Vol 1 1 001

The Elder Gods created magical items. Among them are the Cornerstones of Creation, four powerful artifacts left behind by four Elder Gods (one each):[21]

  • The "Sword" from Oshtur. It is associated with air, as Oshtur is an air deity.
  • The "Rose" from Gaea. It is associated with earth, as Gaea embodies the earth.
  • The "Crown" from Set. It is associated with water, as Set rules the waters.
  • The "Mirror" from Chthon. It is associated with fire; the mirror is actually the Darkhold,[17] and it reflects Chthon's dark flames.


Chthon (the Mystic of Dark Magic), Gaea (the Mother of Earth), Oshtur (Giver of Light and Justice), Set (the Great Destroyer),[22] Tiwaz who is Wisdom and the Winter Sky),[23] Toranos (Elder God of Thunder), Utgard-Loki,[5] Hyppus, Isuus, Kemur, Mejed, Nrgl

Atum, son of Gaea, is "the first of the new race of gods,"[8][24][25][5] but he is sometimes treated and/or counted as an Elder God.[26][27][28]

The Nethergods, including Necromon and Mandrac, were possibly degenerate Elder Gods.[14]


See Also

Links and References


  1. 1.0 1.1 Marvel Zombies: The Book of Angels, Demons & Various Monstrosities #1 ; Demons' profile
  2. What If...? #25
  3. Avengers #187
  4. Scarlet Witch Annual #1
  5. 5.00 5.01 5.02 5.03 5.04 5.05 5.06 5.07 5.08 5.09 5.10 Immortal Thor #8
  6. 6.0 6.1 Carnage (Vol. 2) #4
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Thor Annual #10
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 Silver Surfer Annual #2 ; Saga of the Serpent Crown: Creation
  9. Marvel Tarot #1
  10. 10.0 10.1 Immortal Thor #5
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 Marvel Tarot #1 ; Planes Prelude: The Inner Planes
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z #12 ; Mystic Dimensions - From the Journals of Ian McNee
  13. Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z #12 ; Vishanti entry
  14. 14.0 14.1 Marvel Legacy: The 1980s Handbook #1 ; Necromon's profile
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 Carnage (Vol. 2) #14
  16. Immortal Thor #67
  17. 17.0 17.1 Mystic Arcana: Sister Grimm #1
  18. Carnage (Vol. 2) #1415
  19. Immortal Thor #1
  20. Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme #90
  21. Mystic Arcana: Magik #1
  22. History of the Marvel Universe (Vol. 2) #1
  23. Immortal Thor #12
  24. Thor & Hercules: Encyclopaedia Mythologica #1 ; Atum's profile
  25. Thor & Hercules: Encyclopaedia Mythologica #1 ; Gaea's profile
  26. 26.0 26.1 Incredible Hercules #118
  27. Incredible Hercules #120
  28. Mighty Avengers #23
  29. Lovecraft, Lee and the Elder gods: Who will win? at greydogtales
  30. 30.0 30.1 30.2 Cove West on Marvel and Lovecraft at Remarquable
  31. 31.0 31.1 Elder gods, List of Marvel Comics demons, at Wikipedia
  32. Oshtur at (French) Wikipedia
  33. Carnage (Vol. 2) #15
  34. Thor #301
  35. Savage Sword of Conan #216
  36. Savage Sword of Conan #125 ; At the Altar of the Goat God
  37. Savage Sword of Conan #164 ; The Slithering God
  38. All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z #8 ; N'Garai's profile
  39. Doctor Strange #388
  40. Thanos Imperative #5
  41. Thanos Imperative #6
  42. Glossary entry for "Elder gods"