Glabrezus (pronounced: /ˈglæbrɛzGLÆB-re-zoo[7] or: /glæbˈrizglæb-REE-zoo[7] or: /glɑːˈbritsgla-BREET-soo[8]), or type III demons, were tanar'ri that specialized in the temptation of mortals,[4][5] spreading corruption unseen like a virulent disease.[9] Unlike succubi, who preyed on lust, glabrezus exploited the mortal desire for power in the many forms it took.[3]

The doggish glabrezu are the true tanar’ri most often summoned to the Prime. When they get there, they do not just pull their summoner’s head off. Not always.

Description[edit | edit source]

With a broad, muscular body, a glabrezu stood 9‒15 ft (2.7‒4.6 m) tall and weighed 5,500 lb (2,500 kg)[3][5] Their most physically bewildering feature was their two pairs of arms, each with a different extremity. While their main arms were monstrous limbs that ended in powerful pincers, the smaller humanoid pair ended in clawed hands and protruded from the stomach. Goat horns adorned the top of their canine heads and numerous fangs rested in their muzzles. Their skin was wrinkly and ranged in tone from deep russet to pitch black. A pair of cold, purple, piercing eyes hinted at their great intelligence, contrasting with their bestial appearance.[3][5]

Personality[edit | edit source]

Despite their physical prowess, glabrezus preferred to work behind the scenes, both on the Prime Material Plane and in the Abyss. Glabrezus took pleasure in the act of temptation, luring all they met with lies, deception, and offers of power before ruining their victims' lives.[1] Furthering their guile was their commanding presence, as they had a strong air of authority they used to enhance their arguments. The plans of a glabrezu could take centuries or millennia to come to fruition as their complicated schemes could take as long to complete as their plots for vengeance.[9]

When that glabrezu I summoned said my future looked bright, I thought he meant...well, never mind.
— A mortal burning in the Abyss[11]

Glabrezus did not offer pleasures of the flesh, but tempted those of weak wills and great ambition with promises of unparalleled influence. They collected vast sums of gold, magical items, and other useful bargaining chips and stored them all underground in a massive hoard. They were unable to change, or polymorph, their frightening appearance, so they usually visited mortals in secret, often using telepathy to speak directly in their prey's mind. Sometimes they made their nature known while at others they tried to manipulate their targets by inciting paranoia or twisting their sense of right and wrong.[4][9]

They were most commonly summoned directly by a mortal, such as ambitious human wizards or drow priestesses who hoped to make a bargain. Sometimes they found potential victims on their own, presenting their "gift" whether or not the recipient wanted it. If their victims refused their offers, glabrezus thought nothing of slaughtering them instead, as being willing to summon a demon was likely indicative of their fate regardless.[4][9]

Abilities[edit | edit source]

Glabrezus had access to a wide variety of spells, including the power to spontaneously generate darkness and dispel magic. They had truesight that extended as far as their telepathic communication that they could use in concert during their dealings so as to avoid being seen and to prevent acts of deception. Both their arms were fully functional but they made more use of their claws in combat in order to grapple their enemies. Although they could travel between the planes freely, they usually only came to the mortal plane when summoned.[1]

Among the most fearsome aspects of the glabrezu was their mere presence on the Material plane, as lingering too long caused their corruption to spread. Arrogant mortal summoners often believed they could control glabrezus with ease but the very act of their summoning planted seeds of evil. Their corruption sickened people, animals, and plants alike, even causing the sky itself to grow darker as they leeched off the power of the plane.[2][4]

A glabrezu was able to cast wish for a mortal once per month but required the wish to be for an evil cause, or for payment to be made in an act of wickedness.[3]

Combat[edit | edit source]

A glabrezu in combat with Drizzt Do'Urden.

Glabrezus preferred deception to combat, but did not hesitate to wade in. Unlike normal magic users, they did not stand behind their minions casting spells but ran straight into combat using chaos-inducing spells to send battlefields into disarray while summoning demons powerful in size or number. Despite having no qualms about direct confrontation, they preferred to have their minions do the work if they did not need to do themselves.[3][2]

Society[edit | edit source]

Glabrezus, for all their terrifying presence and wish-granting abilities, only occupied a middle class amongst the demons of the Abyss.[1] While they were hardly great generals, they were normally in charge of many lesser demons and led by example.[2] Often, they performed espionage and acted as advisers or chief lieutenants for more powerful demons, using their skill in trickery to aid their masters' endeavors.[9]

Demons' opinions on the glabrezus varied depending on who was asked, although most lesser demons like chasmes and dretches rightfully feared them.[12] Mariliths, on the other hand, were dismissive and hateful towards the glabrezus despite their mutual a love of planning. While glabrezu favored subtlety and temptations, mariliths felt these games were inferior to true warfare and would prefer to wipe the glabrezu out completely, settling for attempts to discredit them to higher-ups. Meanwhile, the balors were in favor of the corrupting tactics of the glabrezus, giving them work as spies and counselors.[13] Similarly, lilitus also had a fondness for the manipulative glabrezus, sharing their love of subtle corruption.[14]

The glabrezus played little role in the combative side of the Blood War, instead focusing on their sinister schemes. Though not as direct as the warmongering of the mariliths, glabrezu ploys were part of a deeper evil, a more insidious form of subjugation. Their monstrous appearance belied their societal role as the Abyss's covert agents, exerting their influence on other planes with surgical precision and planting greed in the mind of mortal summoners to secure power for the Abyss in the long-term.[4][10]

Quinix on his throne in the Gate of Iron Fangs.

In a rarely successful and unholy ritual, a half-drow, half-glabrezu monstrosity known as a draegloth could be born from a drow priestess. Unlike glabrezus, they were impatient and destructive, only improving their magic that could be used for destructive purposes. They served drow houses as opposed to the masters of the Abyss, but were believed to be a sign of support from Lolth.[15]

History[edit | edit source]

Glabrezus were some of the earliest demons to appear in the Abyss, a demonic manifestation of mortal envy.[16] The half-organic armor plating underneath their flesh was an indication that they had been tampered with by the ancient obyriths known as sibriexes.[17]

Around 1385 DR, Pharaun Mizzrym was killed (for the second time) by magical backlash from a glabrezu.[18]

In 14851486 DR, glabrezus were among the demons that wandered the streets of Menzoberranzan and participated in the failed defense of Q'Xorlarrin against the dwarves. In that conflict, a glabrezu slew former king Connerad Brawnanvil.[19][20]

The demon Marilith often traveled with two glabrezu guards.[21]

Some glabrezu traveled to the Endless Labyrinth, the 600th layer, in order to capture goristros for use by other demon lords, raids that Baphomet begrudgingly tolerated as a method of raising his own legendary status.[22]

Notable Glabrezu[edit | edit source]

Appendix[edit | edit source]

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Novels
Computer games

Further Reading[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford, Christopher Perkins (2014-09-30). Monster Manual 5th edition. Edited by Scott Fitzgerald Gray. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 53, 58. ISBN 978-0786965614.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Mike Mearls, Stephen Schubert, James Wyatt (June 2008). Monster Manual 4th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 54–55. ISBN 978-0-7869-4852-9.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 3.9 Skip Williams, Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook (July 2003). Monster Manual v.3.5. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 43–44. ISBN 0-7869-2893-X.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 Allen Varney, ed. (June 1994). Planescape Monstrous Compendium Appendix. (TSR, Inc.), p. 101. ISBN 978-1560768623.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Gary Gygax (December 1977). Monster Manual, 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), p. 18. ISBN 0-9356-9600-8.
  6. Skip Williams, Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook (July 2003). Monster Manual v.3.5. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 40. ISBN 0-7869-2893-X.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Frank Mentzer (January 1985). “Ay pronunseeAYshun gyd”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #93 (TSR, Inc.), p. 26.
  8. J. Paul LaFountain (1991). Monstrous Compendium: Outer Planes Appendix. Edited by Timothy B. Brown. (TSR, Inc.), p. 5. ISBN 1-56076-055-9.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 Eric Cagle (2006-13-06). Minions of the Abyss (Part 2): Winning Tactics Against Glabrezus. Tactics and Tips. Wizards of the Coast. Retrieved on 2019-08-04.
  10. 10.0 10.1 Colin McComb (September 1997). Faces of Evil: The Fiends. Edited by Ray Vallese. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 46. ISBN 0-7869-3430-1.
  11. Colin McComb and Monte Cook (July 1996). “The Dark of the War”. Hellbound: The Blood War (TSR, Inc), p. 14. ISBN 0-7869-0407-0.
  12. Monte Cook (Oct 2002). Book of Vile Darkness. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 174. ISBN 0-7869-0672-3.
  13. Allen Varney, ed. (June 1994). Planescape Monstrous Compendium Appendix. (TSR, Inc.), p. 104. ISBN 978-1560768623.
  14. Ed Stark, James Jacobs, Erik Mona (June 13, 2006). Fiendish Codex I: Hordes of the Abyss. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 45. ISBN 0-7869-3919-2.
  15. Wizards RPG Team (2016). Volo's Guide to Monsters. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 141. ISBN 978-0786966011.
  16. Template:Cite dragon/357/Demogorgon: Prince of Demons
  17. James Jacobs (September 2007). “The Demonomicon of Iggwilv: Apocrypha”. In Erik Mona ed. Dragon #359 (Paizo Publishing, LLC), p. 44.
  18. Thomas M. Reid (March 2011). The Empyrean Odyssey. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 746–747. ISBN 0-7869-5768-9.
  19. R.A. Salvatore (September 2015). Archmage (Hardcover). (Wizards of the Coast), p. 9. ISBN 0-7869-6575-4.
  20. R.A. Salvatore (September 2015). Archmage (Hardcover). (Wizards of the Coast), chap. 18. ISBN 0-7869-6575-4.
  21. R.A. Salvatore (September 2015). Archmage (Hardcover). (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 17–18. ISBN 0-7869-6575-4.
  22. Ed Stark, James Jacobs, Erik Mona (June 13, 2006). Fiendish Codex I: Hordes of the Abyss. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 152. ISBN 0-7869-3919-2.
  23. Lisa Smedman (February 2005). Extinction. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 28–29. ISBN 0-7869-3596-0.
  24. R.A. Salvatore (August 2008). Passage to Dawn. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 978-0786949113.
  25. Ed Stark, James Jacobs, Erik Mona (June 13, 2006). Fiendish Codex I: Hordes of the Abyss. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 148. ISBN 0-7869-3919-2.

Connections[edit | edit source]

Loumara
DybbukGuecubuManitou
Tanar'ri
AdaruAlkilithArmaniteArrow demonBabauBalorBar-lguraBulezauCerebrilithChasmeDretchGlabrezuGoristroHezrouKastighurKlurichirManeMarilithMaurezhiMavawhanMolydeusNabassuNalfeshneeRutterkinSorrowswornSuccubusUridezuVrockYochlol
Miscellaneous Demons
Alu-fiendBebilithCambionDraudnuEkolidGhourImmolithKazrithMaw demonQuasitRetrieverShadow demonShoosuvaSibriexWastrilith
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.