I've seen a fair amount of confusion about the different terms used to describe Zelgadis. Merriam-Webster givers the following definitions:

chi*me*ra (noun)

[Latin chimaera, from Greek chimaira she-goat, chimera; akin to Old Norse gymbr yearling ewe, Greek cheimon winter -- more at HIBERNATE]

1 a capitalized : a fire-breathing she-monster in Greek mythology having a lion's head, a goat's body, and a serpent's tail

b : an imaginary monster compounded of incongruous parts

2 : an illusion or fabrication of the mind; especially : an unrealizable dream <a fancy, a ~ in my brain, troubles me in my prayer --John Donne>

3 : an individual, organ, or part consisting of tissues of diverse genetic constitution

Obviously, Zel's not a female, so the first definition (the only one that's spelled wit a capital "C") is out. Definitions 1B and 3 seem to fit Zel best, so let's say...."chimera" refers to the sum of all Zel's parts, and is not a specific creature in his case.

go*lem (noun)

[Yiddish goylem, from Hebrew golem shapeless mass]

First appeared 1897

1 : an artificial human being in Hebrew folklore endowed with life

2 : something or someone resembling a golem: as



In Hebrew folklore, golems were often made of mud and earth. This fits in nicely with Zel's shamanist powers, and it can be assumed that Zel's golem element not only gives him strength and invulnerability to conventional weaponry, but adds power to his shamanist spells.

de*mon or dae*mon (noun)

[Middle English demon, from Late Latin & Latin; Late Latin daemon evil spirit, from Latin, divinity, spirit, from Greek daimon, probably from daiesthai to distribute -- more at TIDE]

First appeared 13th Century

1 a : an evil spirit

b : a source or agent of evil, harm, distress, or ruin

2 usually daemon : an attendant power or spirit : GENIUS

3 usually daemon : a supernatural being of Greek mythology intermediate between gods and men

4 : one that has exceptional enthusiasm, drive, or effectiveness <a ~ for work>

-- de*mo*ni*an (adjective)

-- de*mon*iza*tion (noun)

-- de*mon*ize (verb transitive)

I'm still not sure how Zel fits into this definition. It may be an error in translation, or it could be that his demon side grants him speed and immunity. Rezo certainly intended for Zel to be an agent of evil, harm, distress or ruin, but what strength does his demon element provide? Any ideas?




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