Elder Gods (Marvel)
The Elder Gods are a group of deities that feature in Marvel Comics.
The Elder Gods were a race of divine beings that were the first forms of heir kind to arise on primal Earth following the formation of matter and energy from the void. During that time, the sentient life-energy of the planet's biosphere manifested into a entity known as the Demiurge. As the entity formed, it showered the Earth with the spark of procreation from its own essence. Such an act engendered the first forms of ethereal life on Earth that sprang fully formed from the ground. These became the Elder Gods that ranked among their number Chthon, Gaea, Set along with innumerable others. These ancient deities proliferated until their kind inhabited every corner of the world. In time, the Earth was overrun by this form of ethereal life and the Elder Gods began to devolve into demons that destroyed life whilst constantly battled one another for supremacy. Only Gaea stood apart from her kin as she cared for the life on the world and feared that her savage brethren would destroy it in their endless warfare. (Thor Annual v1 #10) It was said that Set first came to realise that he could grow more powerful by stealing the energies of his fellow gods through consuming them. Thus, the serpentine deity became the world’s first murderer as he began devouring others to make himself stronger. This led to other Elder Gods following his example as they began to prey on one another. (Silver Surfer Annual v1 #3)
After destroying numerous Elder Gods, only the likes of Chthon and Set alongside his spawn survived. Chthon fled after creating his indestructible tome of knowledge whereupon he left for a nether-dimension. Upon seeing this, Set followed his example and created his own portal to escape the God Eater. (Silver Surfer Annual v1 #3)
Four billion years ago, the first of the Elder Gods built Omnipotence City that operated as a nexus for the gods that was built as a place for the parliament of pantheons and place for divine fellowship as well as governance. (Mighty Thor v2 #12) A million years ago, two groups formed among these gods that fought a conflict with one another with Chthon being the leader of one side. These deities were defeated and locked away by the victors but the war continued among these interdimensional beings. (Carnage v2 #14) It was said by some of the deep past that the Orishas were children of the Elder Gods but were not gods themselves. A war erupted among their followers where the young gods prevailed with the elders being banished. However, there were some who could not accept this outcome and believed the Elder Gods power echo could still be invoked. (Black Panther v6 #15)
All-Father Odin of Asgard came to Midgard to consult with the last of the Elder Gods; Jord the goddess of Earth. He desired from her a union in which to produce an heir that was unlike any of the other Asgardians with this producing a son named Thor though the child's origins were kept hidden. (Thor Annual v1 #11) For a millennium, males from the Montesi family served as a priesthood that fought to prevent the return of the Elder Gods from their other-realm. (Carnage v2 #14)
General Ulysses of Project: Purgatory sought to control the Elder Gods through the Bloodstone Amulet and freed them from their Limbo prison. However, this was a trick in order to secure their arrival on Earth where they killed him and went on a rampage. This was until Illyana unleashed the returned Legion who was a god-Mutant with the power to control reality which he used to destroy these freed Elder Gods with Rasputin believing she was finally free from their influence. (New Mutants v3 #21)
A drug lord in Symkaria named Voydanoi sought new substances to enrich his black market produce and travelled across the border into neighbouring Transia. Once there, he encountered a shaman who showed him ruins that were actually the remains of Elder Gods. These powerful demonic entities once ruled the world before Heaven existed and thus when they died they had no afterlife to journey to with their spirits instead staying within their bones. Such was their power and size that their bodies contained multiple souls that were left within their bones. Sensing an opportunity, Voydanoi took the bones which he burnt to turn into dust allowing them to be breathed in with this having a drug-like effect on a wearer as the souls increased their power and strength. He began to distribute the substance and intended to sell it to the Shadow Council when Steve Rogers's Secret Avengers shutdown the operation. (Secret Avengers v1 #19)
Such was their age that they predated the existence of an afterlife which meant that their souls did not travel anywhere upon the death of their physical bodies and instead their spirits resided in their dead remains. Their massive size and power meant that these remains often contained several souls. These ancient bones could be burnt and turned to dust whereupon they could be breathed in as a kind of drug. Upon breathing the dust, users experienced a surge in power giving them the strength of up to a Super-Soldier grade. However, toxins in the body could lead to the dust being expelled from the form as they could not handle any form of corruption in a host. (Secret Avengers v1 #19)
- Chthon :
- Gaea :
- Father Set :
- X'axal : an Elder God who once tried to invade Earth's dimension but was stopped years ago by Doctor Strange. (Doctor Strange v5 #1)
- The Elder Gods were created by Mark Gruenwald, Alan Zelenetz and Bob Hall where they made their first appearance in Thor Annual v1 #10 (October, 1982).
In other media
- In Marvel: Avengers Alliance, the Elder Gods were referenced in dialogue by Magik in the setting of the Facebook video game. She described them as beings of incredible power whose only desire was to see Earth and its reality crushed for eternity with Belasco being their servant.
- Thor Annual v1: #10
- Silver Surfer Annual:
- New Mutants v3:
- Carnage v2: