A lot of demons are present in Jewish mythology who are famous for their aggression, magical powers, life taking spells, and their ferocious body modifications.
The Abyzou is the demon of miscarriages and infant mortality who is believed to be invoked by the feeling of envy. She is herself believed to be an infertile demon who is famous in the regions of North-Eastern Europe.
- The Testament of Solomon
- Medical Amulets
- Depiction of Abyzou
- Various Names of Abyzou
- In Popular Culture
The story of Abyzou and the other similar female demons is famous in the ancient Mesopotamian religion. This particular name is believed to appear in the form of a corrupted Greek demon.
The Greek version of the Hebrew Bible tells the story that the name of this demon is treated as a noun of feminine grammatical gender even though the Greek nouns usually have the masculine type of name. This name is also considered to be equivalent to the dark chaotic sea before the creation.
The Testament of Solomon
In the antique Testament of Solomon, Abyzu is described as having a greenish gleaming face with Serpent like hair. The rest of the body of this particular demon is covered by darkness.
The theme of the Solomon testament is envy, during his interrogation by the king Beelzebub himself as added that he inspired Envy among human beings.
Among the succession of various Demons who were bound and questioned, the personification of envy is described as headless and motivated by the need to steal the head of another.
It is also mentioned that when envy is present the work which one has to do becomes disrupted and results in negative impact.
On the various inscribed healing amulets of the near Eastern magical medical tradition, the illness is often embodied and addressed directly to this particular demon Abyzou.
Medieval amulets show a variation on this iconography, with Abyzu trampled underfoot by a horseman.
The rider is identified again either as Solomon or Aleph. One example depicts the rider as Sisinnios, with the demon named as both Abizou and Anabardalea, and an angel named Araph standing by with one raised wing.
The medieval lead amulets that show the rider subduing the female often have the main image that resembles a gorgoneion and is likely a womb symbol.
Depiction of Abyzou
Abyzu is depicted and named on several early Byzantine bronze amulets. With her hands tied behind her back, she kneels as she is whipped by a standing figure, identified as Solomon or Arlaph, called Afarof in the Testament of Solomon and identified with the archangel Raphael.
On one amulet, the figure is labeled as Arlaph, but an inscription reads “The Seal of Solomon with the bearer; I am Roskam.”
The reverse inscription is written within an ouroboros, the symbol of a snake biting its tail to form a circle:
“Flee, flee, Abyzou, Sisinios, and Sisinnia; the voracious dog dwells here.”
Although Abyou is regarded mainly as a threat to child-bearing women and infants, some of the names of those seeking protection from her on extant amulets are masculine.
Various Names of Abyzou
The demon Abyzou is famous by various names all around the world. The name can be different but the powers and the crux associated with the demon remain the same every time.
1. Gyllou, Gylou, Gello
The female childbirth demon appears frequently in magical texts under her Babylonian name Gyllou or Gylou. In one Greek tale set in the time of “Trajan the King”, Gyllou under torture reveals her “twelve and a half names”:
My first and special name is called Gyllou; the second Amorphous; the third Abyzou; the fourth Karkhous; the fifth Brianê; the sixth Bardellous; the seventh Aigyptianê; the eighth Barna; the ninth Kharkhanistrea; the tenth Adikia; …the twelfth Myia; the half Petomene.
Antaura is a female demon who causes migraine headaches. She is known primarily from a 2nd/3rd century silver lamella found at the Roman military settlement Carnuntum in present-day Austria.
At the monastery of St. Apollo in Bawit, Egypt, a wall painting depicts the childbirth demon under the name Alabasandria as she is trampled under the hooves of a horse.
The rider wears a belted tunic and trousers in the Parthian manner, and an inscription, now faded, was read at the time of its discovery as Sisinnios.
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In Popular Culture
- In the 2012 horror film The Possession, Abyzou is the name of the Dybbuk that haunts one of the main characters, Emily “Em” Brenek.
- In “The Sisters Mills”, an episode of the Fox fantasy series Sleepy Hollow, Abyzou is featured as the primary antagonist. Here she is the origin of the myth of the Tooth Fairy.
The Abyzou is the demon from northeastern Europe. This demon is believed to be the epitome of infant mortalities and also the symbol of miscarriages.
This demon gets its powers from the habit of envy, which is most commonly found in every person. So, one should always try to remove this habit to remain safe from this particular female demon.