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A list of all the monstrous beasts encountered by Conan in Robert E. Howard's primary work.
- Grey ape — Grey apes are huge gorilla-like beasts with grey fur. They inhabit the shores of the Vilayet Sea, and are well-known for both their incredible strength and their ferocity. Even Conan, who himself is the mightiest and most savage warrior of the Hyborian Age, has had a few close calls with these creatures. Grey apes appear in The Hour of the Dragon, and "Iron Shadows in the Moon".
- Black One — The Black Ones are a race of tall humanoids with glossy ebony skin and sharp claws like bestial talons on their long fingers. With eyes like fiery amber, their faces are inhuman, every feature stamped with evil. None can tell the true nature of the Black Ones; are they a race of hell-spawned devils, or an extraterrestrial brood from across the stars? Whatever the case, they represent a form of life far removed from the common earthly variety. Dwelling within a strange city made of translucent green stone, which itself lies on a lost island far beyond the normal trade routes of humanity's sea-faring nations, they practice a horrific religion involving a green pool. Conan, along with a band of Zingaran Freebooters, encounter these demonic beings and their blasphemous pool in "The Pool of the Black One".
- Giant serpent — The Stygians worship the giant serpents as gods, believing them to be avatars and children of Set. In the dark city of Khemi, giant serpents freely slither through the streets, devouring any random person they wish. Chosen victims are expected to prostrate themselves before the reptilians and accept their fate. But the giant serpents have also appeared in other places besides Stygia, and are notorious throughout the Hyborian world. The exact size may vary, but the largest of these ophidians can have a head larger than that of a horse, and a body thicker in diameter than a large man. Giant serpents can use either their constricting coils or their potent venom to subdue prey. Besides these monstrous qualities, the giant serpents are also gifted with a strange and supernatural sense of vision. In "The Scarlet Citadel", Pelias the Wizard says of the giant serpents: "The scaled people see what escapes the mortal eye. You see my fleshly guise; he saw my naked soul." Although it is never explicitly stated, it is safe to assume that the giant serpents may have some connection to the Serpent-men of Kull's time. There also appear to be several varieties of serpents; the Ghost Snake seen in "Beyond the Black River", and the Golden Serpents mentioned in "Red Nails", with their petrified eyes glowing like green flame in the city of Xuchotl, can both easily be considered a species of giant serpent. The giant serpents appear in The Hour of the Dragon, "The Scarlet Citadel", "Black Colossus", "The Devil in Iron", "Beyond the Black River", and "Red Nails".
- Giant spider — Frighteningly large arachnids, giant spiders are not out of place in the Hyborian Age. In "The Tower of the Elephant", Conan is attacked by a huge venomous spider in the upper levels of the tower. The size of a pig, the spider uses thick ropes of sticky webbing to try and trap the Cimmerian, a ploy which almost works. With its eight legs, the spider is also devilishly quick and agile, and its fangs can deliver a deadly venom. Giant spiders are said to be common in Zamora, a land where the spider-god Zath has found a loyal following.
- Hyborian dragon — This great reptilian beast is a remnant of a lost age, an age where many of its kind made the Earth tremble with their thunderous roars and the early ancestors of man still dwelt in the trees. By the Hyborian Age they are all but extinct, but that doesn't change the fact that Conan and Valeria are attacked by one of these saurians in Red Nails. It is alluded that the inhabitants of Xuchotl used the bones of the prehistoric monsters to resurrect them with arcane necromancy. These re-animated monsters roamed the jungles around the lost city for many centuries, but their aggressive natures caused them to eventually kill each other off until there was only one left. Despite its large size, the dragon can move very fast, and its scaly hide is impervious to most weapons. Not even the prowess of Conan can afford him victory, forcing the Cimmerian to use his wits.
- Ghoul — Ghouls are mutated humanoids who are said to be a result of cross-mating between men and devils. They haunt the forests on the borders of Argos and Zingara, preying on any unlucky traveler they come across. Conan happens to be one of those unlucky travelers in "The Hour of the Dragon", but with his wits and skill he is able to fight his way out of the horde and escape certain death. The ghouls are described as being short, almost simian-like in stature, with pale gray skin that feels clammy to the touch. But it is their faces that causes Conan the most revulsion: soulless unblinking eyes stare out from misshapen visages, their monstrous dog-like jaws chomping at Conan's throat. Despite their somewhat short height, their limbs exceed the strength of most humans. With a charnel-house reek wafting from their bodies, the ghouls hunger for living flesh, whether it comes from beast or man.
- Winged Horror — Deep in the remote jungles of the Black Kingdoms, on the banks of some forgotten river, there are the remains of a lost city. Here dwell the Winged Horrors. It is believed that the Winged Horrors are degenerate descendants of a lost race of winged men, alien and powerful and wise. But as great and majestic as the old race was, so hard did they fall into the darkest depths of savagery and depravity. Once angelic, these people became monstrous to look upon, and even more bestial in their habits and mentality. Over the ages the city became forgotten, crumbling into ruin as the jungle reclaimed it, but the Winged Horrors still haunt the land. One of these monsters is the main antagonist of the "Queen of the Black Coast".
- Yothga the Devil-Flower — According to Pelias, Yothga is not native to Earth, but rather is from the distant planet Yag the Accursed. Yothga's seeds drifted across timeless black gulfs before landing on Earth, where its roots descended deep into the earth. It is said that the roots of the Devil-Flower reach into Hell itself. Once rooted, Yothga used its vine-like tendrils to catch any living thing within reach and parasitically devour both body and soul of the victim. A victim could be fed upon for years, helpless in Yothga's vines while the alien plant fed on their very mind and reducing them to a placid and dumb state. If a victim were to be freed, however, they would quickly recover their senses and intellect. In "The Scarlet Citadel", Conan encountered the devil flower in the dungeons of Tsothi-lanti's palace, along with a large number of other blasphemous horrors.
- Yag-Kosha, the Elephant-Being of Yag — Far out in space, across timeless gulfs, there is a green planet called Yag. From this world came Yag-Kosha and several of his kin, who journeyed to Earth with the power of their own wings to escape the rulers of that alien planet. Upon landing on Earth ages ago, their wings withered into useless stumps on their backs, and they were stranded on a grim and savage world. Though ultimately mortal, Yag-Kosha and his brethren had lifespans rivaling that of the stars and constellations. With their superficially elephant-like facial features, as well as their great knowledge and power, Yag-Kosha and the others greatly impressed the humans they came across in the eastern jungles, becoming deified and worshiped over the years. The "elephant-beings" taught powerful magic to the humans that came to them, but only that which they deemed as safe for their followers. The shadowy black arts they shunned. Throughout this long period, the civilizations of mankind shifted. Valusia collapsed, Atlantis sank beneath the waves, and cataclysms rocked the world. From the ashes rose the Hyborians and other races. In time, many of Yag-Kosha's people died, and eventually he was all that was left of the refugees of Yag. As Yag-Kosha aged, his human pupil Yara rebelled and enslaved him in an attempt to seize power. Journeying west to the land of Zamora, Yara came to its similarly named capital, with Yag-Kosha as his thrall, and imprisoned the alien in the Tower of the Elephant. For years the wizard, believed by many to be a devil in human guise, tortured Yag-Kosha, interrogating and probing him for arcane secrets and necromantic knowledge, until Yag-Kosha was left blind and broken. But when Conan came to the legendary Tower seeking the Heart of the Elephant, a jewel of fabled power, Yag-Kosha sees in the young Cimmerian an opportunity for both liberation...and revenge.
- Saber-toothed Tiger — The deep ancient forests of the Pictish Wilderness have existed for untold ages, its mysteries hidden from the ken of man and untouched by time itself. To the Aquilonians, the Pictish Wilderness marks the boundaries of civilization, an uttermost frontier beyond which lies a shadowy beast-haunted realm inhabited by devils and savages. Who knows what lurks in that timeless forest that looms beyond the Black River? It is well known that Pictland is teeming with all manner of panthers, wolves, bears, and serpents, but not even the most insane nightmares can ever conceive of the beings that lurk in the deep wilds and remember the name of Jhebbal Sag. The survivor of an ancient, grimmer age, the Saber-toothed Tiger is but one of the horrors that answers the call of the Pictish wizard, Zogar Sag. With its massive build, more bear-like than feline, and great brutish head, it is an amalgamation of brutal extinct and bestial savagery. Its eyes burn greenly in the gloom, its long tapering fangs glinting like ivory scimitars, and with one swipe of its mighty paw it reduces a man to a grim red ruin. The Aquilonian youth, Balthus, a prisoner of the Picts, bears witness to the nightmarish power of the Saber-tooth in Beyond the Black River.
- Icthyan Killing Machine: The killing machine was a armored monster the Queen Gedren unleashed upon Red Sonja, Kalidur attempted to kill it but found its armor inpenetrable and so resorted to blinding the creature by removing its eyeballs.
Monsters seen in the expanded universe[edit | edit source]
- Kah-Tah-Dhen: A giant arachnid, resembling the shape of a tarantula. List of titles being "The taker of heads", "The Decapitating God", and "The Mother of Spiders". Being a primordial monster, stated to have existed in the "time of the saurians and Lizard Kings". Slain by Conan with the help of companions, not much else is known of the beast. In its lair nests a horde of miniature spiders, presumably of its own race though unconfirmed. The story takes place in Shushan, a city-state in Shem, somewhere in the mountains, with the direction of being in the east. [The Savage Sword of Conan # 183]
- The Demon of Shinu: An unnamed character introduced in The Savage Sword of Conan #184, the demon is not seen in later stories. Able to summon the living dead (I.E Zombies), the demon offers gold in exchange for "a living death". Of what this entails, nothing is known, except perhaps being an explanation out of many for where sorcerers and madmen seek magical power in the world of Conan. Conan fails to defeat the demon but is saved by his companions. [The Savage Sword of Conan # 184]
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