She was known under a variety of names, such as the Goat with a Thousand Young, God of a thousand young, the Goat God, the Great Goat God, or gods, the Black Goat gods, the elder god Sahb Delanzar, or simply Delanzar, the Black Beast of Hell with its Thousand Young, and possibly the Devil.
The "thousand young" represent the babies sacrificed in her name, and are collectively known as the "One Thousand". It is said that these young, as warriors, would "someday lead Sahb Delanzar's avenging army when he comes to consumes the Earth" and that he shall inherit all the kingdoms of the World, ruling all the Earth once again.
It allegedly ruled all the Earth at some point.
Circa 28,500 BC or before, in the hills of Zalgara, Valusia, in the middle of summer, an unnamed sorcerer sacrificed seven goats (with Tyre's goat, Devil Butt, last) in the name of the Black Beast of Hell with its Thousand Young to Yagotha, the Guardian of the Gate, to make him turn the key holding the Old Ones, intending to have them do his binding. Though the sorcerer was killed, the summoning was a success and an icy horror came to Earth's dimension to prepare the planet for the Old Ones, until it was defeated into retreat by a hero whose name was forgotten.
At some point in the Pre-Cataclysmic Age (see notes on Captain Rhan's page), the Captain Ehestes Rhan possessed a few ancient incantations books (though he claimed to have never dabbled in black magic). Rhan was marooned on an isle west of Grebuhl by his crew. Stranded on the isle (that he named Zahrahan), Rhan decided to punish the mutineers and to force them to respect the Ancients they despised. He studied the teachings of Set and Mhur in his books. He prayed to the Dark Ones, and to the Great Goat Gods and their brethren, unwillingly summoning a terrible creature only named as "the were-god". The creature seemingly forced Rhan to mate, and later spawned the monstrous Children of Rhan, rapidly aging girls that eventually transform into massive feral creatures if taken away from their birthplace, and causing the weariness of men.
During the Hyborian Age, Shub-Niggurath was often invoked under various names, and even materialized herself on occasions.
In the city of Zemizar in Zamora, the Goat God was worshipped as Sahb Delanzar (or simply Delanzar). Their worship included that the faithful were taken up to Alabuzar, the seventh level of Heaven. The goat was the most sacred of all creatures for Delanzar's believers. Delanzar's cult was administered by the Brotherhood of Sahb Delanzar, who tried to complete the One Thousand.
When Slogg-Nhumazdar came to the city, he pretended fealty to Sahb Delanzar and partnered with the Brotherhood in order to take over the slaughter houses. The city prospered thanks to the meat trade controlled by the Brotherhood and administered by Slogg, while the Brotherhood gained gold from Slogg's operation.
As the Zamoran kings conspired against Zemizar and imposed them military and economic sanctions, Slogg began selling goat meat at the slaughter houses to maintain his lifestyle, to the displease to the Brotherhood. Conflict erupted with great damages and casualties, until Slogg offered a truce, stated that he would not sell goat meat anymore, was to marry the high priest's daughter Lissandra, and to be supervised in his own house by the high priest. Lissandra in fact conspired to use the son she had with Slogg as sacrifice to Delanzar.
Still to afford his lifestyle, Slogg started selling goat meat once again, causing tensions with the Brotherhood. He consequently hired the help of Conan to protect him.
The Brotherhood (who tried to slay Slogg and take his son as the final sacrifice) soon opposed Conan whom they view as a threat to the ritual. Eventually, the high priest was slain by Slogg and the son was taken by Lissandra into the underground altar of the Goat God. Slogg and Conan pursued them there, and decimated the Brotherhood. Lissandra shed her own blood to invoke Sahb Delanzar, drawing the symbol of power on a stone talisman. His apparition caused the panic among the worshippers. Delanzar grasped Conan to devour him, but Conan managed to shatter the stone talisman, causing pain and strength loss to the Goat God, and letting Conan tumbled free. The Goat turned his attention towards Slogg and Lissandra whom he devoured, before vanishing as the catacombs were collapsing.
To avenge himself from Captain Dalvalte who tortured him, left him for dead and stole his daughters, Reimos allegedly entered in contact with the Old Ones, the Black Gods of R'Lyeh, the Goat with a Thousand Young and the children of Great Cthulhu, who offered him his spider-infested castle.
During an unidentified medieval-like era, a soldier was given orders by his king to wipe out an area from alleged rebels, who were in fact harmless nomads and included a witch-woman, worshipper of Shub Niggurath. After slaughtering the nomads (who resisted with savagery), the soldiers brought to their leader the witch-woman, who cursed him and his descendants on her mistress Shub Niggurath's name, as he stole her medallion and killed her. After he had his men to burn the corpses to erase evidence of the error, the soldier spontaneously burned up.
For generations, the soldier's descendants came back to the plateau, where they disappeared, generating a mystery that haunted his family, and prompting the sons to return and search for clues of their father's fate. Jack at his turn came to the plateau with a guide, Yagar. There, he found the medallion at his turn, experienced the vision of his ancestor's crimes, and finally encountered an apparition of the witch-woman who repeated her curse. Jack's body immediately exploded and turned to dust.
Powers and Abilities
The invocation of the "hand of Sahb Delanzar", by drawing blood and using it to form the "Eldritch symbol of power" could raise the dead as fighters. The vision of the same symbol, wielded as an amulet by their targets, made the dead stop their attack.
A curse said while invoking her name was able to torment its victim and his descendants across the generation, inducing them with visions of their ancestor's crime, and killing them by various ways: The initial cursed man spontaneously burst in flames, while his descendant Jack exploded and turned to dust.
The Goat God was seen to suffer and lose strength as a talisman withe eldritch symbol of power used to invoke him was shattered.
Creation and first appearance
- Shub-Niggurath, The Black Goat of the Woods with a Thousand Young, was created by H. P. Lovecraft, and first mentioned in "The Last Test" (1928). She was not described by Lovecraft, but was developed by other authors, including August Derleth, Robert Bloch and Ramsey Campbell.
- The Demons' entry in Marvel Zombies: The Book of Angels, Demons & Various Monstrosities #1 state that Shub-Niggurath first appeared in Savage Sword of Conan #36, where a demon described as "a shapeless mass of cloudy something" was invoked and appeared, unnamed. The entry also lists the Demon of Smoke (a name fitting the description of the monster) as appearing in that issue.
- The entry also mentions that Zeriti summoned a "smoke demon" of "unknown origin".
- A website reprising the listing corrected Shub-Niggurath's first appearance or mention to Savage Sword of Conan #64, where the "Great Goat Gods" are invoked.
- The first named appearance occurred in Savage Sword of Conan #125, where the Great Goat God, the God of a Thousand Young, is named "Sahb Delanzar". It is unclear if that being is indeed the same, despite resemblance in the titles.
- Niggurab, mentioned in Avengers #353 (September, 1992), written by Len Kaminski, was considered by the Appendix to the Handbook of the Marvel Universe to be a Marvel reference to Shub-Niggurath. The Demons' entry in Marvel Zombies: The Book of Angels, Demons & Various Monstrosities #1 listed both Old Ones separately.
- Shigguraub, mentioned in Hellstorm: Prince of Lies #4 (July, 1993), written by Rafael Nieves and Len Kaminski, could be an alternate name for either Niggurab or Shub-Niggurath, or another distinct entity.
- In Lovecraft's work, Shub-Niggurath is female.
- In Marvel Comics, as Shub-Niggurath, the Goat is female, but as "Sahb Delanzar", it is male.
- Shub-Niggurath is alternatively described as an individual entity ("Goat with a Thousand Young", "Goat God"), or as a group (the "Black Goat gods", the "Great Goat gods").
- Some of her aliases mentions thousand of young ("Goat with a Thousand Young", "God of a thousand young"). In the case of Sahb Delanzar, the thousand young represent the babies sacrificed to him, and are collectively known as the "One Thousand").
- In Savage Sword of Conan #125, the Great Goat God was named "Sahb Delanzar" or simply "Delanzar". Despite not being called "Shub-Niggurath" and being depicted as a male entity, that entity was seemingly her, as her aliases ("Goat God", "Great Goat God", "God of a thousand young") fit with Shub-Niggurath's aliases.
- The Goat God often wondered why babies were sacrificed to him, when there's more meat on adults.
- 1 appearance(s) of Shub-Niggurath (Earth-616)
- 1 minor appearance(s) of Shub-Niggurath (Earth-616)
- 5 mention(s) of Shub-Niggurath (Earth-616)
- 3 image(s) of Shub-Niggurath (Earth-616)