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I take what belongs to me. I take what belongs to others. I take what is satisfying to me. I will take what satisfies others. I will take it all. And mine it will be.
~ Leviathan.

Leviathan is a primordial beast of darkness and chaos and a king of Hell referred to in the Tanakh and the Bible. He makes a major appearance in the Book of Job as one of God's first and mightiest of Earthly creatures that rules the seas on contrast to Behemoth who rules the Earth and Ziz rules the skies.

Overview

Leviathan is one of the Seven Princes of Hell and its gatekeeper. Leviathan as the gatekeeper is known as the Hellmouth where the mighty demon's mouth is said to represent the gates of Hell itself. He is also the representation of the sin, Envy.

The entrance of Hell is envisioned as Leviathan's mouth is due to the fact that when a whale is hungry, he opens his mouth and a sweet smell comes out. The fish are tricked by the smell and they enter into his mouth. Suddenly the whale’s jaws close. Leviathan and the Gates of Hell are inextricably linked to one another, as such it is said that that the demon's very mouth, famously known as the Hellmouth, can lead to the depths of the Abyss as well (though this may be another entity instead).

History

Primordial Beast of the Sea

While Leviathan's origins are a mystery, biblical accounts describe him as a primordial beast that resided in the Abyss until he was tamed by God after the creation of the Heavens and Earth. Another is that he once belonged to the order of the Seraphim that joined Lucifer's Rebellion against God and as a result fell along with them, which consequently caused its form to shift into a serpent or any type of sea monster.

Nevertheless, it would seem that both of these accounts of been syncretized to where after his fall, Leviathan became a primordial beast of the chaotic oceans that cannot be tamed by man or beast except for God. Despite its demonic nature, God allowed it to share one of the three realms of the Earth, it having the oceans, alongside its two cohorts being the Behemoth and Ziz, who share the earth and the air respectively.

After the War in Heaven, the very fundamental nature of creation itself shifted dramatically and among these disturbances was the animal kingdom turning against one another for the sake of survival as well against their former masters that being Adam and Eve. This also affected the three primordial beasts; Behemoth, Ziz, and the Leviathan itself. The effect caused them to turn against one another thereby spurning the three layers of what makes up the Earth as well as those that dwell within them into chaos. As a result, God was forced to separate these three mighty beasts lest they caused untold natural destruction upon the planet and its inhabitants.

Prophesied Death

It is revealed that during the End Times, Leviathan and its brethren shall be slain and its flesh will be served to all those deemed as righteous. This essentially means that when the time comes, God will slay these monsters to save His creations but only His followers will be allowed to feast. According to the Talmud, the Leviathan's skin will be flayed and cover the tent where the feast takes place and if one does not consume its flesh they will be given clothing made from its skin. The remaining skin will be spread across the walls of Jerusalem where its brightness is said to illuminate the world.

Attack on Hellboy

Leviathan appears briefly in league with the demon Moloch, whose minions kidnap Hellboy from the deck of a freighter in the Atlantic Ocean. Leviathan carries Hellboy across the sea in its belly, before spitting him out onto the coast of the same Scottish isle where he was "born."

During Hellboy's reunion with his uncle and his two brothers, Gamon and Lusk, Leviathan appeared and consumed both Astaroth and his nephews before any further business could be done, ending the grudge between the two demons.

After the majority of the demonic hierarchy is killed by a titan in the visage of Hellboy, Leviathan emerged from the seas to fight this new adversary but was killed. Its death was soon followed by its 'brother' the demon Behemoth's death. As per the prophecy, Hellboy took the corpse of the Leviathan all the way to the stronghold within the Hollow Earth that was established when the Ogdru Hem devastated the Earth and had its skin flayed to be cooked and cover the walls of the stronghold with said skin as a form of protection.

Powers and Abilities

Leviathan is one of the most powerful beings in creation with its sheer presence being enough to make even the bravest of men tremble at the spot. According to the Book of Job, the Leviathan's hide is indestructible as no blade of any earthly or even supernatural caliber can penetrate it. The Book of Job even goes so far as to say that nothing on Earth is its equal and looks down upon those who are proud and arrogant. The Leviathan is capable of projecting "burning lights" that can destroy almost any man-made structure.

When the Leviathan is hungry, reports Rabbi Dimi in the name of Rabbi Johanan, he sends forth from his mouth a heat so great as to make all the waters of the deep boil, and if he would put his head into Paradise no living creature could endure the odor of him. His abode is the Mediterranean Sea; and the waters of the Jordan fall into his mouth.

Myth and Legends

In legend, it is said that Leviathan's own body serves as its own realm of Hell and preys upon souls that attempt to escape from the Inferno, devouring them and sucking them inside its stomach, where they are forever to be burned in the flames of its body. According to Michaelis' classification of demons, Leviathan was a prince of the Seraphim who tempts people to give into heresy, and is opposed by St. Peter.

Leviathan became associated with, and may originally have been referred to by, the visual motif of the Hellmouth, a monstrous animal into whose mouth the damned disappear at the Last Judgement, found in Anglo-Saxon art from about 800, and later all over Europe.

Gallery

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