Real Name: Chthon
Identity/Class: Elder God (Distant Past to the present day)
Occupation: Evil Sorcerer, arch-demon, author of the Darkhold
Group Membership: Elder Gods
Affiliations: Aelfric, Blade
(as Switchblade), Darkholders, DeGuzman, Diabolique, Harvestor
(Johnny Farmer), Keku, Mr. Hayward,
Lilith, Mercy (Norman
Zachos), Modred the
Montesi, Dr. Michael Morbius, Nezaral, Aurora Poule, Sagbata,
(Brian Kornfeld), Reverend Styge, Morton Thurnton,
Verdelet Donald J.
see Ian McNee's Catalogue of Correspondences via the First Tarot;
Enemies: Ashake of ancient Egypt, Atum/Demogorge,
Avengers (Beast (Henry McCoy), Captain America (Steve Rogers), Amadeus
Cho, Falcon (Sam Wilson), Hercules, Hulk (Bruce Banner), Iron Man (Tony
Stark), Jocasta, Ms. Marvel (Carol Danvers), Quicksilver, Scarlet
Witch, Stature, USAgent, Vision, Wasp (Janet Van Dyne), Wasp (Henry
Pym), Wonder Man (Simon Williams)), Bova, Brendan, Sam Buchanan,
Redeemers (Louise Hastings, Jinx (William
Hastings), Victoria Montesi,), Jonathan
Heka-Nut, High Evolutionary (Herbert Wyndham), Lady Janice,
Lady Liberators (She-Hulk, Thundra, Valkyrie), Knights of Wundagore, Loki, Janet Lyton,
Maximoff, Ian McNee, MI13 (Black Knight (Whitman), Captain Britain (Braddock), Spitfire), Merlin,
Vittorio Montesi, Morgan Le Fey,
Russoff, Spider-Woman (Jessica Drew), Dr. Stephen Strange, the
Viper, Winter Guard (Crimson Dynamo, Darkstar, Red Guardian), Grant Whittaker;
formerly Modred the Mystic
Set, Hyppus (brothers), Gaea, Isuus, Oshtur (sisters), other Elder Gods (siblings) and their offspring (varying relations);
"Offspring"/Creations: Darkhold Dwarf, Dragonus, Hellhound, Keirrok, the Midwife, Monstrosity, Victoria Montesi, the N'Garai, Troids Shadow demons, unidentified mother of Diabolique, Van Ripper's Demon, Whisperer, Wish-Demon, Wolf Men (including Vārcolac), Y'Bsgloth, Y'Garon, Y'Griarth
Aliases: Demon of the Darkhold, the Great Shadow, the Other, the Wolf, Fire, He Who Holds the Darkness
Base of Operations: His own extradimensional
Wundagore Mountain, Transia, Europe
formerly mobile over Earth in the Distant Past
First Appearance: (as the Other) Marvel
Chillers#1 (October, 1975);
(as Chthon) Avengers I#186 (August, 1979)
Powers/Abilities: Chthon is a being of unimaginable mystical power, specifically that which can be called black magic. In the dimension he has created for himself he controls every aspect of reality. He can also send his power out of that dimension when invoked to do so by a spellcaster, though when this is done the spellcaster's soul is forfeit to the Elder God. Otherwise Chthon is unable to move freely through dimensions and is trapped in his own because it would take an enormous mystical rift to convey the immense mystical power of the Elder God.
Until Chthon finds a way to truly free himself from his other-dimensional realm, he can operate on Earth through his elemental host, known as the Other, which is summoned when someone uses the Darkhold. The Other can manifest itself in any appearance it wants, but its actions on the Earthly sphere are generally limited by the demands of the user of the Darkhold. If the proper rituals are performed, Chthon can also take over mortal host-bodies on Earth, but he can not easily transfer all of his totality to these forms, and often even the fraction he can is too much for the form to contain.
Chthon developed Necromantic magic on Earth. Forbidden in every civilized mystic community, this potent form of magic is still practiced by twisted witches and wizards who seek power no matter the cost. Drawing on the potent energies generated by the termination of lesser energies (i.e. human sacrifice) and capable of generating swift and significant results, necromantic incantations have resulted in the destruction of entire civilizations.
Chthon created the Flickering Realms (also known as the Dimension of the Darkhold, or the
Dark Heart of Chthon) There is no map of the Flickering Realms because
the landscape is constantly changing. A traveler might cross sands,
then swamps, next snow, and then stone; further, the stone may
bleed and the snow might burn like fire. The only constant here is
The N’Garai's dimension is inside of this one, and the demons are everywhere.
History: (Thor Annual#10 (fb)/Silver Surfer Annual#2/5 (fb)/Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition #2: Chthon) - When the Demiurge seeded the Earth with its energies, Chthon was among the beings, now called the Elder Gods, who rose from the Earth. Chthon and his sister Gaea were among the Elder Gods who dwelled within the Earth rather than the sea or sky.
(Silver Surfer Annual#2/5 (fb)) - Chthon devoted itself to the study of things that should not exist and the dark mystical forces of the universe, thus he became the planet's first master of black magic. He even experimented on at least one of the other Elder Gods, transforming it.
(Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (hardcover) Vol. 7 (2009): Appendix: Magic (from the journals of Ian McNee) (fb) - BTS) - The fourth path or "forbidden path" (as it was originally known) was developed on Earth by Chthon. Witnessing his brother Set gaining power by destroying life, Chthon became curious. He studied the release of death energies in order to master this source of power for himself and to better defend himself against the insatiable hunger of Set.
(Silver Surfer Annual#2/5 (fb)) - Chthon created (or mutated) a lupine figure.
(Thor Annual#10 (fb)/Silver Surfer Annual#2/5 (fb)) - As the Elder Gods degenerated into violence only Gaea remained peaceful. Seeking a way to protect the innocent life that was growing on the planet. Gaea mated with the Demiurge to create Atum, the first of a new generation of gods who could fight the evil Elder Gods. Atum began his mission and became the Demogorge.
(Silver Surfer Annual#2/5) - Chthon and another Elder God, Set, worked together in an attempt to destroy the Demogorge, but they failed.
(Thor Annual#10 (fb)/Silver Surfer Annual#2/5 (fb)) - Seeing he could not win, Chthon wrote all his mystical knowledge upon an indestructible parchment that would come to be known as the Darkhold Scrolls.
(Darkhold#11 (fb)) - Wanting to ensure that should another Demogorge ever appear on Earth it would be at his own behest, Chthon added the Demogorge Page to the scrolls and a counterspell to stop the Demogorge that could only be cast by someone non-mystical in nature.
(Thor Annual#10 (fb)/Silver Surfer Annual#2/5 (fb)) - Just moments before the Demogorge could arrive to kill Chthon, Chthon fled to another dimension, leaving his scrolls behind to serve as his link to his home dimension.
(Marvel Tarot) - When Chthon (and Set) fled the Earth dimension, they created dimensions very close to it so they could continue to influence things.
(Marvel Comics Presents#145 - BTS) - Chthon spawned the race of demons known as the N'Garai.
(Marvel Tarot (fb) - BTS) - Chthon saw early man as little more than laboratory rats upon which he could conduct a series of mystic-genetic experiments. Twisting together the tissues of man, beast, and demon, Chthon created several elder races to serve him, including the N'Garai, the Ape Men, the Man-Bats of Ur-Xanarrh, the Harpies, the Goblins, and possibly the Nightgaunts (Nighthaunts?); some of his creations were more successful than others. The Wolf Men were his most infamous success. For time his Wolf Lords held all the world in terror, their names and stories have become tangled in the world's myths and legends: Garmr, Lycaon, Gauerko, and, most notably, Vārcolac, the Wolf Demon, who eventually impregnated Echidna, bearing Angerboda, who then mothered Fenris Wolf and Jormungand, the Midgard Serpent.
(Marvel Tarot (fb) - BTS) - Chthon whispered lies into the ears of Varuna, leader of the Winged Lords of Akah Ma'at (creations of Oshtur), causing him to grow suspicious of those he called the lower races. Becoming their judge and executioner, Varuna, swayed many of his brethren to his cause, with those who did becoming known as the Asura.
(Marvel Tarot (fb) - BTS) - Seeking balance for Chthon's corruption of the Asura, Oshtur & Agamotto converted four of the most malevolent demons into the service of justice: one of these was the Pale Rider (aka Cadaver),
(Dr. Strange III#11/2, Conan the Barbarian I#245 (fb)/Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition #2: Chthon) - The Chthon scrolls were discovered by human sorcerers in Pre-Cataclysmic Atlantis. These sorcerers (including Varnae and possibly Verdelet) founded a cult of Darkholders and used the power of Chthon to become vampires. Over the next millennia many people came to use the Darkhold and be corrupted by Chthon, including Babylonian savants, Egyptian priests and Hebrew scholars.
(Mystic Arcana: Magik (fb) - BTS / Marvel Legacy: The 1960's-1990s handbook: 1970's Where Are They Now) - In the 11th century BC, working via Keku (the primordial Ogdoad god of darkness and chaos), Chthon tempted and broke the sorcerer Heka-Nut, bending him to his service. While attempting to claim the Sword of Bone, which was the Elder Goddess Oshtur's contribution to the Cornerstones of Creation, Heka-Nut was struck by the time-traveling Magik (Illyana Rasputin)
(Amazing Spider-Man Annual#22 (fb)) - In the Sixth Century Morgan Le Fey became leader of the Darkholders who worshipped Chthon's book. Morgan and the Darkholders attempted to summon the Elder God and make him do their bidding, but he was far too mighty to control. Morgan and the others began sending Chthon back to his realm, but incapable of banishing him altogether, they bound him to a single earthly location, Wundagore Mountain. Having seen true evil, Morgan's lover Magnus renounced the Darkholders and stole the Darkhold hiding it where none with evil intent could get it.
(Marvel Chillers#1 (fb)) - Towards the end of the Age of Camelot, the young mystic Modred came to the Tower of the Darkhold seeking to use the book for noble purposes. When the Other appeared to Modred it demanded a sacrifice in exchange for the power that he sought. Modred resisted, refusing to give up his soul, knowing that if he resisted the power of the Darkhold could be his. Their struggle was interrupted when Modred's betrothed, Lady Janice, entered the Tower. The Other turned its sights on her and Modred sacrificed his own soul to save her. Modred then fell into a deathlike sleep that lasted centuries.
(Dr. Strange III#11/2) - Merlin and Brendan combined their mystical might to combat the Other's forces that had been unleashed. When they were triumphant, Brendan took the Darkhold and scattered the pages throughout the world.
(Werewolf by Night#3 (fb) - BTS) - Aelfric, a monk came to worship the Elder God and gathered together the scattered pages of the Darkhold and bound them as a book once again.
(Dr. Strange III#17/2 (fb)) - Chthon and the god Sagbata entered into a pact that resulted in the creation of animated undead corpses that possessed no will of their own, the first true zombies. Chthon was said to honor the pact "for his own dark reasons."
(Avengers I#187 (fb) - (BTS)) - Chthon watched, fascinated as the High Evolutionary built his citadel on Wundagore Mountain and created his New Men.
(Amazing Spider-Man Annual#22 (fb)) - In March of 1932, the spirit of Chthon that was trapped in Wundagore laughed as the High Evolutionary refused to believe Jonathan Drew's assertions that he was possessed by Morgan and needed help in stopping the Elder God.
(Uncanny X-Men Annual#12/3 (fb)/Avengers I#187 (fb)) - In 1958, Gregor Russoff cast the Spell of Ascension, hoping Chthon could free him from his lycanthropic curse. The Other rose from Wundagore and attacked the High Evolutionary and his Knights. Magnus left the form of Jonathan Drew and possessed Russoff to recite the spell of Binding, returning Chthon from whence it came. Sensing what was happening, Chthon lashed out at Magnus/Russoff with a magical blast and also left his mark upon an infant who was being born that night on the mountain. Over half of the forty-two Knights of Wundagore died in that battle. The infant would grow to be the Scarlet Witch.
(Mystic Arcana: Scarlet Witch#1/2 (fb) - BTS) - Sensing that the sorceress coven of Lilia Calderu (who had come under the influence of the Serpent Crown), Laura Maria Russoff, and Margali Szardos, sought to enlist young Wanda Maximoff into their group, Chthon directed Taboo, who held a Darkhold copy containing some of the original Darkhold's pages, to prevent this so that Wanda would not come under Set's influence and be lost to him.
(Mystic Arcana: Scarlet Witch#1/2) - Taboo enlisted Damballah (Josué Koul&egrav;v) to aid him, and the two confronted the coven. As they struggled, Wanda's powers surfaced for the first time, allowing Chthon to briefly reach across the dimensional barriers and contact them. Chthon banished the Serpent Crown back to its resting place and Damballah back to Haiti (to prevent Set's influence from affecting Wanda, for whom he had plans). Before disappearing, Chthon told all those present that they would bear children of occult significance.
(Darkhold#16 (fb) - BTS) - Vittorio Montesi discovered he was sterile, but was determined to have an heir to guard the Darkhold, gave in to temptation and used a Spell of Fertility from the cursed book. This allowed Montesi's wife to become pregnant, but not with Vittorio's child, but rather Chthon's. The child was Victoria Montesi.
(Marvel Chillers#2) - When Modred the Mystic had
awakened in the modern era, the Other appeared to him and demanded his
sacrifice. Modred used all the power he now possessed to drive back the
Demon of the Darkhold, but the Mystic felt he lost a piece of his soul
in the process.
(Avengers I#187 (fb)- BTS) - When Modred became loyal to Chthon, the Elder God had him trick Magnus into being on the other side of the world when he attempted to rise again.
(Avengers I#186) - Having taken Modred into his thrall, Chthon had the Mystic capture the Scarlet Witch and perform the ritual allowing the Elder God to begin using her as its vessel on Earth. While trying to purge the form of the last of Wanda's humanity and conscience, Chthon appeared before Quicksilver and Bova warning them to flee or be killed. As Chthon began to grow more powerful in her earthly form, she attacked Pietro and Django Maximoff.
(Avengers I#187) - After Modred defeated most of the Avengers, but was knocked out by the Wasp, Chthon easily bested her. Chthon took the Avengers and placed them, with Django and Pietro in a mystical circle that would allow her to bring the rest of her demonic essence to Earth. Before that could happen however, the Beast, dressed as a Knight of Wundagore, arrived and stole the Darkhold. The distraction freed the other Avengers and Django. Django, just before he died of a heart attack, realized that Wanda's soul still existed in the doll he had crafted in her image and gave it to Pietro. Using the doll as a focus point, the Avengers joined their wills against Chthon's, returning Wanda to her body and trapping Chthon's essence in the doll. Pietro threw the doll down the mountain and Wanda caused an avalanche to bury it, leaving the Elder God once again trapped in the dimension.
(Spider Woman I#44) - The Viper (see comments) cast Spider-Woman through a portal to Chthon's domain. The Elder God touched the hero and began transforming her into a demon. Spider-Woman climbed in an attempt to escape as she transformed, her own limbs turning against her as she became more and more demonic. As she reached the top she found the Viper. Chthon demanded that the Viper kick her back into his realm that he may claim her soul. The Viper, believing Spider-Woman to be her daughter instead betrayed the demon and fired upon it, closing the door to his realm and freeing Jessica.
(Doctor Strange II#62 - BTS) - As Dr. Strange used the Montesi Formula to destroy all vampires on Earth, he successfully avoided having Chthon gain control of his soul.
(Doctor Strange: Sorcerer Supreme#24 - BTS) - Dormammu invoked the Cauldron of Chthon in a spell as he attempted to plunge the Earth into permanent darkness.
(Darkhold#1 (fb)) - When Donald Walsh used a page from the Darkhold and asked for immortality, the Other appeared and granted the request, leaving Walsh in the form of the Chameleon worms.
(Darkhold#2 - BTS) - Morton Thurnton used a Darkhold page, the Other appeared to him and summoned the Hellhound to aid him in finding weapons of destruction.
(Darkhold#3) - The Scarlet Witch sensed the coming of the Other Things and was momentarily returned to her Chthon-controlled state. In Perfection, South Carolina a Darkhold page was used by Aurora Poule and the Other appeared before her. Given a choice between a dress to make her beautiful or revenge on those who had hurt her, Aurora chose the dress. When people were still mean to her, Aurora returned to the Other and asked for revenge. The Other obliged by opening a N'Garai cairn and unleashing the demons on the town.
(Darkhold#4) - The Other was summoned by Reverend Styge and gifted him with the ability to raise the dead by eating humans.
(Midnight Sons Unlimited#1) - When a paralyzed woman named Clarisse Van Ripper used a page, the Other appeared to her and gave her the ability to sense the world through a demon.
(Midnight Sons Unlimited#1/2) - A prison inmate named Norman "Mercy" Zachos used a page of the Darkhold and the Other granted him escape, but he was plagued by demons whenever he was in darkness.
(Darkhold#6) - The Other was summoned by a Mr. Hayward who wanted people to remember what he fought for in WWII. The Other created an army of Japanese planes that attacked Maui in a recreation of Hayward's memories.
(Darkhold#8) - On an airplane, Sarrah Roberts used a page and the Other came to her. The Other unleashed a demon that granted her wishes and those of the other passengers.
(Darkhold#9) - Louise Hastings used the Wishing Page to summon the Other and told it, though she was tempted to use it to bring her daughter back to life, she would not give in and she and the others would fight it until their last breath. When her grandson Jinx tried to use it, only his status as a mystical adept kept Chthon from being able to dominate him.
(Darkhold#10) - While attempting to free his friends from Interpol, Jinx again drew upon a page of the Darkhold. Bound by Jinx's skill the Other was compelled to answer when Vicki asked it about the Demogorge page.
(Midnight Sons Unlimited#2/2 (fb)) - Summoned by Lt. Frank West the Other granted him with the ability to see Troids.
(Midnight Sons Unlimited#2/4 - BTS) - When legally brain dead Johnny Farmer was awakened by the Dwarf and given a page from the Darkhold, the Other came to Farmer and turned him into the Harvestor.
(Nightstalkers#10) - The vampire hunter Blade used the Demogorge Page and summoned the Other. Taking the form of Blade's mother, it offered Blade the chance to have his revenge on the supernatural by becoming a new Demogorge. Blade accepted and became Switchblade.
(Spirits of Vengeance#13 - BTS) - Louise Hastings used the Darkhold to cast the counterspell to the Demogorge, saving those who had been killed by Switchblade and losing some portion of her soul to Chthon.
(Darkhold#12) - The Other made an offer to Modred. It would return his soul if he would have a certain good woman in England willingly surrender her soul in his place. Modred accepted and succeeded in getting the woman to go through with it, only realizing after the ritual had occurred that the woman was his beloved Lady Janice. Taking possession of Janice, Chthon fought Modred, who drew upon Janice's love and faith to fend off the demon. Realizing that the demon would kill Janice before he let her go, Modred offered his soul again and Chthon accepted. After Janice died in his arms Chthon made the Mystic renew his loyalty.
(Morbius#13) - When Michael Morbius used a page of the Darkhold to attain his deepest desire, the Other resurected Martine Bancroft for him, though the Lilin called Parasite had taken over her form.
(Darkhold#14 (fb) - BTS) - Vicki Montesi used a page of the Darkhold, gaining powers to heal using the life forces of those killed by the Monstrosity.
(Midnight Sons Unlimited#3 (fb) - BTS) - A young man named Brian Kornfeld was offered a page of the Darkhold and wanted to fight crime. The Other turned him into Spider-X.
(Darkhold#16) - The Dwarf revealed to Modred that
Vicki Montesi was now pregnant with Chthon himself and that in nine
months he would be reborn onto the Earth.
(Doctor Strange: Sorcerer Supreme#89 - BTS) - Chthon had the Midwife, a demon specifically created to give life to the infant Chthon, appear within Strange's Sanctum and prepare to bring Chthon to Earth again.
(Doctor Strange: Sorcerer Supreme#90) - In his realm, Chthon prepared for its return to Earth. Dr. Strange traveled to Chthon's dimension and approached the demon. Chthon communicated with Strange, which very nearly caused the human Sorcerer give into the darkness and die, but Strange was saved only by his faith in "something far subtler and far more majestic than the Great Shadow." Strange then wove a spell with that faith and hurled it at Chthon, causing the demon to shudder. Chthon then banished Strange back to Earth, where the Midwife had begun to deliver Victoria's baby. There Strange seized an opportunity, he cast a similar spell that drew upon all the goodness in Victoria's soul and with Chthon weakened by being out of his domain but not yet born, Chthon was forced to retreat.
(Quicksilver#11 - BTS) - In a cavern deep within Wundagore, Exodus noticed the living power in the mountain and contemplated how he could use it.
(Mystic Arcana: Magik#1 (fb) - BTS / Mystic Arcana: Sister Grimm#1/3) - Seeking to use Ian McNee in his plot to reclaim Earth, Chthon banished McNee's spirit to the Serpent's Sea, the realm of Set.
(Mystic Arcana: Magik#1) - Posing as Oshtur, Chthon appeared to Ian and offered to save him in exchange for restoring the ancient Egyptian mystic Heka-Nut to save the mystic realms. After Ian vowed to do so, swearing by the thrice conjured crossroads, "Oshtur" instructed him to use the First Tarot to find the "Four Aces," to gather the Cornerstones of Creation, starting with the Ace of Swords. Ian then awoke suddenly, found it to be 6pm, dusk, and initiated his quest.
(Mystic Arcana: Sister Grimm#1/3) - As the gathering of the Cornerstones of Creation was necessary to restore the fabric of magic (damaged in the War of the Seven Spheres), the real Oshtur aided Ian in his quest.
(Mystic Arcana: Magik#1/3) - Via Oshtur's agent Ammut, Ian acquired the Sword of Bones, the talisman of Oshtur/air.
(Mystic Arcana: Black Knight#1/3) - Via Morgan Le Fay, Ian acquired the Ebon Rose, the talisman of Gaea/earth.
(Mystic Arcana: Scarlet Witch#1/3) - Via Llyra and Nagala, Ian acquired the Serpent Crown, the talisman of Set/water.
(Mystic Arcana: Sister Grimm#1) - Ian asked the First Tarot for aid in his quest, and the advice he received -- from Magik (Illyana Rasputin) via the Justice card, Morgan Le Fay via the Empress card, and Nagala via the Emperor card-- led him to question the quest's true nature. Magik questioned the time of arrival of "Oshtur, the Bright Lady of the Dawn"; Morgan questioned whether he had accepted the quest with a pure heart or whether he had been coerced; and Nagala noted that Lord Set had not cast Ian into the Serpent's Sea, so who else had the power to do such a thing.
(Mystic Arcana: Sister Grimm#1/3 (fb) - BTS) - Chthon presumably guided Marie Laveau to aid McNee in his quest.
(Mystic Arcana: Sister Grimm#1/3) - Ian realized that he had
not found the fourth Cornerstone, the mirror, because he had been thinking too
literally, and that the mirror was actually the perfect reflection of Chthon's
soul, the Darkhold. Marie Laveau then arrived at McNee's Cornerstore on
Creation, delivering to him "the Last Chronicle of Chthon," a page from the
Darkhold that had until recently been hidden behind the legendary Black Mirror.
Chthon then appeared again in the form of Oshtur, and led Ian to using the
gathered Cornerstones to cast the spell to restore Heka-Nut. With aid from
Ashake, Morgan, & Llyra, Ian released Heka-Nut's spirit from the canopic jar and
gave it shelter within his own body, at which point Chthon revealed his true
nature, and Heka-Nut threatened to take over Ian's form and make him Chthon's
slave. Having suspected this, Ian then summoned Ashake to the present, and
Morgan and Llyra (aided by the Cornerstone's powers) assaulted Chthon to protect
Ian. Ashake used the Sword of Bone to free Heka-Nut from Chthon's control,
allowing Ian to use the Cornerstones to banish Chthon, though Chthon took the
Cornerstones with him, telling Ian he has tainted his soul with the use of the
Darkhold, and that Chthon would return to collect what he is owed soon;
Ashake remained trapped in the present, and Oshtur appeared before them both back on Earth, telling them that the assemblage of the Cornerstones has helped repair the structure of magic. There was more work to be done, though it could wait for another day.
(Mighty Avengers#21) - Chthon's summoning by Modred the Mystic caused chaos cascade washed all over Earth and temporarily killed such heroes as most of the Young Avengers (Hawkeye (Bishop), Hulkling, Patriot, Speed, Wiccan), the Avengers (Captain America (Barnes), Ms. Marvel (Danvers), Ronin (Barton), Spider-Man (Parker), Wolverine (Howlett) ) and Omega Flight (Arachne (Carpenter), Guardian (Pointer), Sasquatch). When Chthon finally appeared Modred already had a body for him to inhabit--Quicksilver. Chthon was ready to run and conquer the world.
(Mighty Avengers#22) - Though Modred was afraid that the Avengers (Amadeus Cho, Hercules, Hulk, Jocasta, Stature, USAgent, Vision, Wasp (Pym) ) would cause problems, Chthon wasn't impressed by this new team and began to spread an all-devouring chaos cascade with Quicksilver's speed all over the world without even considering fighting the Avengers. Heroes like MI13, the Winter Guard and the Lady Liberators were among those who desperately fought the creatures summoned by Chthon.
(Mighty Avengers#23) - Chthon continued spreading his chaos cascade, but returned to Transia when he felt that the Avengers were attacking Mount Wundagore. Chthon attacked them, but when Amadeus Cho adjusted Pym's old Ant-Man helmet to scramble Chthon's language the Elder God couldn't use his magic spells anymore. With Quicksilver's body beat up by the Hulk and Stature, Chthon fled into Modred's body. Unfortuantely Modred had all Darkhold spells transferred onto his body. Chthon and the spells were drawn into the Darkhold were they were bound to stay. Chthon's chaos cascade and all the effects on Earth since his summoning were reversed and all the fallen heroes were back alive.
(Journey Into Mystery I#627 (fb)) - Chthon attended the Devil's Advocacy to talk about the Serpent (Cul)'s actions on Earth.
Comments: The Other created by Marv Wolfman,
Bill Mantlo and Yong Montano.
Chthon in full Elder God form created by Mark Gruenwald, Steven Grant, David Michiline, John Byrne and Dan Green.
Chthon is a Greek word meaning earth or earthly.
I expect I've missed a few occurrences of people summoning on Chthon's power through the Darkhold. The most important ones should be here though. Also, I tried my best to get the chronology of the Other's appearances right, but it was all over the Midnight Sons line and I'm no expert on most of the characters there, so it can be hard to tell which stories happened in what order sometimes.
The height, weight and eye and hair color given up there are as they were given in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (Deluxe Edition #2), but given Chthon's nature I'd imagine any of those things are subject to his will.
It seems very likely to me that Belathauzer is related to Chthon, probably as one of his children in the N'Garai. Also, it has been suggested that maybe the People of the Dust could be connected to him. Noting that they were on Earth for the rise and fall of the dinosaurs, while Chthon was in his dimension, perhaps he created the People of the Dust to protect his Darkhold Parchments. Surely he'd not want to just leave them lying there with Demogorge around. And the scrolls weren't found by humans until Pre-Cataclysmic Atlantis, not long after the Blood would have apparently put the People of the Dust out of action.
Marvel Comics Presents #145 doesn't actually tell any part of the tale of Chthon creating the N'Garai but it is, as far as I know, the first confirmation that they are the Elder God's spawn.
In Spider-Woman I#44 the Viper was revealed to be Merriam Drew, Spider-Woman's mother. Except in a later issue of Captain America, the Viper revealed to Spider-Woman that that was actually an illusion put into the Viper's mind. Jessica suspected it was her enemy Morgan Le Fey who had caused the deception and the Official Handbook Chthon entry "Morgan once used her magic to simulate the aspect of Chthon in an attempt to defeat the Spider-Woman" so I guess it is quite possible that Chthon was also an illusion in that issue.
Chthon isn't mentioned by name in that Quicksilver issue, but Exodus stated that the cavern was living with power. It's pretty clearly a reference to the Elder God trapped there.
I'd like to add a bit from Darkhold#10 that I like. Diabolique described Chthon and the Darkhold: "A long time ago, when the world was so new nothing had a name, something woke up. It learned all about what was and what would be... but most of all it learned what couldn't be, what shouldn't be. And it gave those things names, names it wrote on indestructible pages, because a namer has mastery of the named."
Darkhold#6 (March 1993) page 4 slightly revises Chthon's
Avengers I#186-187 appearance. Agatha Harkness says (after the Scarlet Witch says "....when he [Chthon] possessed me!") ""He
possessed" you? My dear child, no human vessel-not even yours-could contain
Chthon. You were inhabited by a mere fraction of it, which interacted with your
own repressed dark side". Agatha Harkness notes what we already know from
Doctor Strange: Sorcerer Supreme#11/2 and Set's Update '89 entry; Chthon is not really
humanoid in form, but people subjectively perceive Chthon that way.
Dr. Strange III#90 suggested that human perception of Chthon as having a physical form somehow bound him into having an actual physical form.
Chthon has entries in OHotMU Deluxe Edition#2, Master Edition and Horror 2005.
In the Marvel Tarot, sorcerer Ian McNee does a reading from the First Tarot, and he puts together a wealth of information on his findings and thoughts. Among these are the "Marvelous Catalogue of Correspondences, which links various beings, objects, and things as being connected and/or related to one of four categories. See the entries on Gaea and Oshtur for additional detail/discussion/categories.
In the Marvel Tarot, Chthon, though originally an earth god, is described as being best matched with the ancient element fire. Further parallels are drawn to Sister Grimm, the Mirror (with the Darkhold representing the dark reflection of Chthon), the card suit Clubs, the tarot suit Wands, the color Red, the Southern lands, the Sun, the will and the spirit, Summer, Dusk, certain animals (lion, horse, fox, tiger, coyote, wolf, salamander, phoenix), symbols (candle, altar, smoke, blood, thorns), astrology (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius), the lion aspect of Ammut, the Will portion of the Ritual of the Sphinx, the Fantastic Four's Human Torch, the Frightful Four's Medusa, the U-Foes' X-Ray, Firelord, Power Pack's Katie Power, the Elementals' Hellfire, the Four (or Three or Five) Who Are All's Fire-Eyes, the Scarlet Centurion aspect of Immortus, the spirit totem of Red Wolf, Marie Laveau of the Voodoo Council, the Faltine race, the Octseence/Examplar's Balthakk & Inferno (subtle) and Farallah & Carnivore (base), the N'Garai, the Wolf Men of Valusia, the Phoenix Force, Oblivion, the Ruby gemstone, the celestial beast Suzaku - Red Phoenix, the Crowley quote "With the Wand he createth He!", the Impossible Man, the strong interaction force, the Skrull race, radiance of energy, the energy form of matter, Lord Chaos, the Magus aspect of Adam Warlock, Dr. Strange of the Defenders, the Stranger, the Jungian state feeling, and Vampires.
(Marvel Tarot) - Chthon periodically withdrew his influence from Modred, allowing him to realize what he has become and attempt to save himself. Chthon would allow this as long as it amused him, but eventually he could simply retake his control.
(Marvel Tarot) - The higher elements (Chthon and Oshtur) seek to understand. Chthon dissects humanity, which continues to surprise him. This distresses him, and he tests humanity to goad them so that he may learn to predict what they will do.
In the novel Spider-Man: Requiem by
Jeff Marriotte, the Darkhold and Chthon appear. I did not get a chance
to look at this book more closely. Further information when I do.
The Scrying Stones of Chthon were utilized by Doctor Voodoo to keep tabs on potential allies and threats in Doctor Voodoo: Avenger of the Supernatural#1-5 (December, 2009 - April, 2010). Unfortunately the demon Nightmare had a better use for them in the same series and used them to gain control over the beings watched by Doctor Voodoo. Doctor Doom and Doctor Voodoo stopped Nightmare's plot.
by Patrick D Ryall
Chthon should not be confused with:
Images taken from:
Thor Annual#10, page 2, panel 3 (Chthon is born from
Amazing Spider-Man Annual#22, page 60, panel 4 (Chthon is summoned by Darkholders)
Uncanny X-Men Annual#12, page 61, panel 6 (The Other attacks the Knights of Wundagore)
Marvel Chillers#2, page 22, panel 4 (The Other, as a ball of light confronts Modred)
Avengers I#186, page 30, panel 1 (In the form of Wanda)
Spider-Woman I#44, page 23, panel 2 (Chthon is below the Spider-Woman)
Darkhold#3, page 16, panel 1 (The Other introduces itself)
Morbius#13, page 13, panel 4 (The Other is summoned by Morbius)
Dr. Strange III#90, page 16, panel 1 (The Great Shadow looms over Strange, who wears a magical protective cocoon.)
Mighty Avengers#21, p36, pan2 (Chthon possessing Quicksilver)
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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