The Eternals are a Human derived species that feature in Marvel Comics.
The Eternals were superhuman beings that were created as a result of experimentation by the enigmatic race of cosmic beings known as the Celestials. They had conducted numerous evolutionary experiments on life in the cosmos where they created superhuman Eternal beings amongst the Kree and Skrulls. The Celestials similarly arrived on the planet Earth where they split the Human race into numerous offshoots that included the seemingly immortal Eternals and their cousins the Deviants.
When only beasts populated Earth, the planet was visited by the Celestials where they began experimenting on the newly formed race of apes. These creatures were taken alive where their technology imbued them with cosmic chemistry that would father the races to come. The experiment split the species into three branches consisting of humans, Deviants and Eternals. (Eternals v1 #1) It was Nezzar the Calculator who had taken a number of primitive humans where they conduced tests on their durability and longevity where the Eternals were created after a selected set of DNA molecules were bombarded with special radiation. After a number were created, they were released from the Celestial mothership where they flew on harnessed waves of cosmic power. (What If? v1 #23) The Eternals during their early existence wandered the Earth in search for a home until they arrived at a polar mountain. With their molecular powers, they worked together in creating a stronghold to meditate on their destiny and built the city of Titanos. During this time, philosophical dissension erupted among their leaders Chronos who favoured meditation whereas Uranos sought conquest. This eventually erupted in a civil war among their kind that ravaged and destroyed Titanos but ultimately Chronos defeated Uranos. Uranos and his followers were then exiled from Earth for their crimes with Titanos being rebuilt. During this time, their leader Chronos had conducted experiments into the secrets of life when an accident caused an explosion that turned him into an intangible cosmic entity. The radiance from the explosion bathed the remaining members of his kind in energies that gifted them with practical immortality. (What If? v1 #24)
For a time, the Eternals would leave the Deviants to their devices who would forge an empire that spanned the world from the islands of Lemuira. From there, they lorded over mankind who they kept as slaves until the return of the Celestials. The Deviants would make the mistake of attacking the Celestials who responded by destroying the Deviant civilization forcing them underground. It was during this time that the Eternal Ikaris encountered an ark containing displaced humans and guided it to safety. (Eternals v1 #2) During the age of the Maya, the Eternals approached the civilization and gifted them great knowledge as well as advanced technology with the Mayans viewing these beings as gods from the sky. (Cable v3 #3)
The Eternals would take refuge in the highest mountain tops where they probed the universe with their minds and developed powers that surpassed those of other Earth-life where they were regarded with awe as well as fear. (Eternals v1 #1) For some time, the Eternals had been aware of a new race of powerful beings on Earth known as the Inhumans and had watched their activities. (What If? v1 #29) At some point, a legendary conflict known as the War of Eterninhuma or Eternals/Inhuman War erupted between the two species. During this time, the Eternals forged the Time Sword that the Inhumans destroyed with the weapon being scattered into five pieces throughout history. (Cable v3 #3) Afterwards, King Black Bolt of Attilan sought to evacuate his people to a new home. During his search, he encountered Ikaris who after a brief battle befriended the Inhuman and took him to Olympia. Once there, Black Bolt would meet Zuras who ruled the Eternals and after learning of the Inhuman's mission did he dispatch his people to scour the surface of Earth to find a suitable site for their new home. Their travels would lead them to discover an isolated location in the Himalayas that was perfect for their purposes. The Inhumans would attempt to relocate Attilan to this site with the Eternals helping excavate the site for construction and helping move the city thus forging a strong friendship with them. (What If? v1 #29)
They were noted for living during the time of the original Library of Alexandria. During its fall, the Eternals saved much of its writing from Caesar's fire. These books were later taken to the Olympia and preserved across the ages that included writings covering alchemy and transmutation. (Fall of the Hulks: Alpha v1 #1)
As a result of Sprite's actions, many of the Eternals became divided on whether to remain on their cosmic odyssey or return to the world of their birth. This saw them forming a Uni-Mind in order to debate this matter with only Virako and Phastos refusing to take part due to them not feeling much of a kinship with their fellow Eternals. Ultimately, the Uni-Mind ended and the Eternals returned to the Earth which was an event that was witnessed by Thor. However, the Eternals claimed that they had debated about a serious matter and whilst they decided to remain on Earth; they refused to be part of society. Thus, they asked Thor not to seek them out again and seemingly declared a period of isolationism. Whilst Thor was disturbed, he complied with their wishes whilst wondering if the Eternals would return as allies or adversaries. (Thor: The Deviant Saga)
At some point, the Leader formed a group of fellow supervillain scientists called Intelligencia who used temporal technology to enter Olympia in order to steal from the records of Library of Alexandria. In order to mask their act, they replaced the stolen relics with replica's to prevent the Eternal's from learning of the theft. (Fall of the Hulks: Alpha v1 #1)
The Eternals later debated their role in the future due to the rise of numerous new superheroes. In this time, Sersi remained amongst Humanity where she hid her true nature and witnessed an attack by a synthetic hydra with the Red Hulk. Whilst attempting to help, Ross used his abilities to determine that Sersi was not a normal Human and believed her responsible for the attack. She urged the Red Hulk to unhand her but he was attacked by the enraged Ikaris as he believed Sersi was assaulted by Ross. The two battled until the nearby volcano ignited after which Ikaris moved to contain the threat before it harmed the Human populace. Both Ikaris and Sersi were later recalled by Zuras who decided that the Red Hulk had shown that he was a threat due to his actions. (Red Hulk v1) They would later emerge at the High Evolutionary's citadel to assist Wyndam in his quest to save mankind by eliminating the various offshoots of humanity as this threatened to summon the Celestials to purge the world as a failed experiment. (New Warriors v5 #10)
During the attack from the Final Host of Dark Celestials, the Avengers sought answers on their foes and decided to split up with one team seeking out the Eternals. (Avengers v8 #3) Upon arriving at Olympia, Iron Man and Doctor Strange found that the arrival of the Final Host had caused the Eternals to go into a maddening rage with them seemingly having killed one another. (Avengers v8 #4)
They bred few in number who were immune to time and death. (Eternals v1 #1) Eternals were capable of being hurt but could not truly die. (Eternals v1 #3)
Ages of development had imparted on them great mental powers allowing them to craft realistic illusions such as normal clothing that hid their true garments or send thought-waves to one another. (Eternals v1 #3) Through mental and physical fusion, they were able to achieve feats such as levitation by way of mind and matter working in perfect harmony. (Eternals v1 #6)
Due to their extended lifespan, the Eternals suffered from a condition that they called the "Mahd W'yry" which was a breakdown of the mind. This occured when they lived so long that their minds were unable to process their existence. Eternal custom claimed that those suffering from this condition were put to death.
Among the species was a concept known as "Gann Josin" which was used to describe an intimate joining of two minds whereupon they become soulmates who were united in their own personal Uni-Mind. Through this meld, one of its members was capable of telepathically summoning the other when they required aid. It was, however, possible for one of the party's taking part in the Gann Josin to break the bond.
Similar to gods, they lived apart from all other living beings. (Eternals v1 #1) Despite that being the case, they were honor bound to protect those under their charge. (Eternals v1 #5)
One item used by their kind was the resurrection crypt that allowed the reformation of an Eternal on an atomic level. (Eternals v1 #2)
- Zuras :
- Ikaris :
- Makkari :
- Sersi :
- Ajak : a male Eternal known to the Incas as Tecumotzin who was the God of Flight that could communicate with the Celestials. (Eternals v1 #2)
- K'lybn :
- Ultimus :
- The Eternals were created by Jack Kirby where they made their first appearance in the Eternals v1 #1 (July, 1976).
- In Thor & Hercules: Encyclopaedia Mythologica v1 #1 (2009), the Eternals received an entry in the book and were designated as Homo Immortalis.
- In Uncanny X-Force v1 #23, an alternate world designated Earth-235 was said to be populated by vampire Eternals.
In other media
- In Marvel Heroes, the Eternals appeared in the setting of the MMORPG video game. During the story mode, it was shown that Ikaris and Sersi were set as protectors of the Cosmic Cube when they were ambushed by Doctor Doom who claimed the relic.
- In Marvel: War of Heroes, the Eternals were referenced in the card Eternal Orphan Hyperion that states that the alternate world Hyperion being from their race in his reality in the video game.
- Fall of the Hulks: Alpha v1 #1: