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Nyarlathotep is a character who features in the Cthulhu Mythos.



Nyarlathotep was an Outer God, and a servant of Azathoth (who he seems to despise). He is also known as the Crawling Chaos, and is said to have over one thousand different forms and avatars. Nyarlathotep acts as an messenger, conveying communications between the Great Old Ones and their worshippers, as well as between the Old Ones themselves. Nyarlathotep was once known as simply Nyarlat, but acquired the honorific "-hotep" during the reign of Nephren-Ka.

Unlike the other Outer Gods and Great Old Ones, Nyarlathotep prefers to torment rather than destroy. He will sometimes grant advanced science or "magic" to lesser beings, simply to see it destroy them. In fact, he is destined to bring about the end of humanity; his involvement in the creation of atomic weapons may be the first step towards that.

Known Avatars of Nyarlathotep


  • Nyarlathotep was created by H. P. Lovecraft where it made its first appearance in The United Amateur v1 "Nyarlathotep" (November, 1920).
  • It has been suggested that Nyarlathotep does not exist as an individual being, but rather represents the mental powers of the Old Ones as a whole; however, his distinct (and fairly human-like) personality makes this doubtful.

In other media


  • In Journey into Mystery v2 #4 (1973), Nyarlathotep was adapted into Marvel Comics where he was depicted as a timeless demon.


  • The United Amateur v1: "Nyarlathotep" (1920)

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