Who is Zariel?


3.5/d20/OGL


I am intrigued by this fiend, discussed briefly in the Book of Vile Darkness suppliment.

She was the former "Lady of the First" in the Nine Hells, in control of Avernus. However, at some point in the past, she was deposed by Bel. Rumors abound regarding her current condition, but some think that Bel is still drawing off her power, having imprisoning her soul in his Brass Keep on Avernus.

Who is she? What's her deal? Has anyone ever used her in a campaign? Furthermore, are there any other resources out there that discusses her history or fate?

Thanks.

Scarab Sages

I had this same question. I just assumed that she was from some first edition product that I never saw.


As far as I remember in 1stEd, Tiamat was the ruler of Avernus, and Bel was in service of Dispater. It wasn't until Planscape that Bel somehow became ruler of Avernus and Tiamat became just a resident.


Wasn't she the little mermaid?

Ultradan


There's alot of things about "The Angel of Death" online, if you're a bit creative with the spelling, Zorial, Azriel, and so on. The internet is cool.

I have alot of idears about who she is, so I'm just going to assume that there isn't some obscure D&D cannon out there that I'm not aware of.

Ultradan, I'll make sure to include the flippers.


I finally find a use for this PDF outside of just knowing cool but otherwise irrelevant information on Hell! It's a little disjointed, and I'm not sure how much is still or ever was cannon, but it's more than I've ever seen anywhere else. I've got similar files on most of the major figures of the Nine Hells, but I can't remeber the site I downloaded it from.

Zariel:
Titles: True Lord of the First Hell (imprisoned), The Destroyer, the Locust King, Angel of the Pit
Aliases: Apollyon, Appolion, Appolyon, Abaddon
Areas of Concern: locusts, punishment, imprisonment, evil war, corruption through the following of orders
Allies: Tiamat, Michael
Rivals: Lucifer, Bel

History:
After the War in Heaven, it was deemed necessary for a loyal servant of Good to descend from Mount
Glory to Baator in order to prevent the Fallen from escaping or wrecking havoc on nearby planes. The
strongest of Michael's generals, Apollyon, was chosen and was given the position of guarding Hell's first
layer. Baator corrupts the best, however, and Apollyon was never that. The Angel of the Pit began creating
special baatezu to aid her in punishing the wicked inhabitants of her domain. The Locusts, as they were
called, resembled a cross between gelugons, kocrachons and osyluths with insectoid features and scorpion
tails. As time went by she began using them to herd the baatezu into armies. Her relentless crusade against
the enemies of Law and Good is said to be one of the origins of the Blood War (though there is evidence
that the conflict had been going on already for eons; that the Elder Hellions had fought it, and the primal
thought-creatures of the astral plane had fought it before the Great Ring even existed). The archdevils
seized upon this idea, immediately recognizing the use of a war in training troops, strengthening loyalties,
and determining advancement. In addition, they hated chaos as much as any archon -- their malicious
natures only heightening this… and were eager to hurt it in any way they could.

Apollyon continued to create locust servitors, and her generals began to chafe under the rule of one they
considered alien (though in truth she was one no longer). Lead by the chief warlord Bel, Amduscias,
Malphas and Goap surprised her. With his subordinates orchestrating a siege, Bel broke in and battled the
weakened Angel of the Pit, ultimately binding her in her own webs. The jailer jailed, her minions
exterminated, Apollyon was locked beneath the throne of Bel in Avernus' deepest pit. Even today her
struggles cause cataclysms and turmoil throughout the layer, but they grow weaker as Bel bleeds off more
and more of her energy.

In ancient times the moon-god Sin, knowing Apollyon's reputation as a guardian, entrusted her with
Tiamat's Tablets of Fate to prevent the dragon goddess from stealing them back and re-conquering Arcadia.
Now, struggling in her prison, Apollyon is offering them back to their original owner in exchange for
freedom; the results of this pact remain to be seen. Heaven's warlord is said to be still favorably disposed
towards his old friend. He too is attempting to break Apollyon out.

Appearance: Today the Locust King resembles a vast serpent with angel's wings and dozens of eyes.
-------------

The Tablets of Fate, according to Wikipedia, originate from Mesopotamian mythology, and whoever controlled them could control the world (in reality, by knowing weather patterns and crop cycles told about on the tablets, but that's not so fun in D&D.) I've found no other info, even asking on these very boards once, so I guess you're left with making the rest up yourself.

-------------
Under Bel's entry, there is this:

The great pit fiend Bel has had a long and interesting career, working for Moloch, Beelzebub, Dispater, and
even the balor Illssender before finally being assigned to Apollyon's armies by the orders of Beelzebub.
Frustrated by his lot under the Destroyer, Bel secretly organized a coalition to overthrow Apollyon and set
himself in her place. While the Locust King was off luring mortal armies into the evil's fold the legions of
Avernus surrounded her palace and imprisoned her.

Contributor

Zariel hasn't had much detail on her outside of some brief mentions in the 3e Manual of the Planes and the (otherwise poor) 2e 'Guide to Hell'. I don't recall her being mentioned in 2e Planescape material pertaining to Baator, or to Bel, though it was mentioned that Bel was aided in his rise to power by the planar faction 'The Sign of One'.

I'm actually planning on using Zariel in my current campaign, or at least an attempt by Darius, former factol of the Sign of One, to return Zariel to power. All of this in revenge over Bel allowing her, Darius, to rot within the mazes of The Lady of Pain and not making any effort to aid her after the Faction War.


According the D&D 5E Monster Manual, Zariel is now the Lord of the First again.


Holy Necromancy, Batman!


Hooray for necromancy and congratulations to Zariel!


I wonder if Zariel is mentioned in any of the old "Politics of Hell" articles from Dragon magazine, waaaaaaaaaaay back in the day...?

EDIT: Issue #28! From 1979! But not the one I was thinking of. Further research reveals: "Dozens of unique devils appeared in a two-part article by Ed Greenwood, including the greater devils Bist, Caim, and Nergal, the dukes of Hell Agares, Alocer, Amduscias, Arioch, Balan, Bathym, Biffant, Caarcrinolaas, Chamo, Focalor, Gaziel, Gorson, Herodias, Machalas, Malphas, Melchon, and Merodach, and the princesses of Hell Cozbi, Lilis, and Naome in 'The Nine Hells Part I' (Dragon #75) and the dukes of Hell Abigor, Adonides, Barbas, Barbatos, Bele, Bifrons, Bileth, Buer, Bune, Morax, Neabaz, Rimmon, Tartach, Zagum, and Zepar, the princesses of Hell Baalphegor, Baftis, and Lilith, the chancellor of Hell Adramalech, the queen of Hell Bensozia, and the inquisitor of Hell Phongor in 'The Nine Hells Part II' (Dragon #76 (August 1983). Ed Greenwood's follow-up article, "The Nine Hells Revisited" in Dragon #91 (November 1984) introduced the greater devils Armaros, Azazel, Cahor, Dagon, Duskur, Kochbiel, Malarea, Nisroch, Rumjal, and the arch-devil Gargoth." No sign of Zariel :(


Kirth Gersen wrote:

I wonder if Zariel is mentioned in any of the old "Politics of Hell" articles from Dragon magazine, waaaaaaaaaaay back in the day...?

EDIT: Issue #28! From 1979! But not the one I was thinking of. Further research reveals: "Dozens of unique devils appeared in a two-part article by Ed Greenwood, including the greater devils Bist, Caim, and Nergal, the dukes of Hell Agares, Alocer, Amduscias, Arioch, Balan, Bathym, Biffant, Caarcrinolaas, Chamo, Focalor, Gaziel, Gorson, Herodias, Machalas, Malphas, Melchon, and Merodach, and the princesses of Hell Cozbi, Lilis, and Naome in 'The Nine Hells Part I' (Dragon #75) and the dukes of Hell Abigor, Adonides, Barbas, Barbatos, Bele, Bifrons, Bileth, Buer, Bune, Morax, Neabaz, Rimmon, Tartach, Zagum, and Zepar, the princesses of Hell Baalphegor, Baftis, and Lilith, the chancellor of Hell Adramalech, the queen of Hell Bensozia, and the inquisitor of Hell Phongor in 'The Nine Hells Part II' (Dragon #76 (August 1983). Ed Greenwood's follow-up article, "The Nine Hells Revisited" in Dragon #91 (November 1984) introduced the greater devils Armaros, Azazel, Cahor, Dagon, Duskur, Kochbiel, Malarea, Nisroch, Rumjal, and the arch-devil Gargoth." No sign of Zariel :(

Zariel is strictly from late second edition post Planescape. She was mentioned first but unnamed in a Dragon Magazine article that re-introduce the Arch-devils. She was given the name Zariel later in Guide To Hell (I think, could be wrong).

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