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 Post subject: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:16 am 
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Far-Sighted Wanderer
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I found this great list of Appendix N inspirations broken down by monster, class, planes and even spells on the Acaeum.

Here's the link to the acaeum thread (http://www.acaeum.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=12873)

And here's the link to webcitation archive of a geocities page. (http://www.webcitation.org/query?url=http://www.geocities.com/rgfdfaq/sources.html&date=2007-07-20). I'm going to paste list here in case it ever disappears.

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Literary Sources of D&D
Compiled by Aardy R. DeVarque

The D&D game is an amalgamation of many literary sources, from recent fantasy fiction to ancient mythology. Since understanding how these elements were intended to work, or how to best build on or alter them may sometimes require knowledge of their original context, a listing in one place of such influences could be a great help. However, given the sheer size of the game, and the overwhelming number (and intertwined nature) of literary influences, derivations, and borrowings, a comprehensive catalog would be several lives' work. What appears below is a humble attempt to list what I can.

According to p. 224 of the 1st edition Dungeon Master's Guide, the following are among the books and authors that were of particular inspiration to Gary Gygax in the creation of D&D. According to Mr. Gygax, de Camp & Pratt, Robert E. Howard, Fritz Leiber, Jack Vance, H.P. Lovecraft, and A. Merritt had some of the most direct influences on the direction of the game, and the others in the list had a lesser influence. Since the list was created in part to dispel the belief that D&D was based primarily and almost solely on the works of J.R.R. Tolkien, and shortly after the Tolkien estate had accused TSR of copyright infringement, Tolkien's name was intentionally left off of that short list. Even a cursory reading of de Camp, Howard, Leiber, Vance, Lovecraft, and Merritt admittedly show as great or greater influences on D&D as Tolkien, but Tolkien definitely should have also been mentioned with those.[1] Here is the list presented in the 1st edition Dungeon Master's Guide.

Anderson, Poul. Three Hearts and Three Lions; The High Crusade; The Broken Sword
Bellairs, John. The Face in the Frost
Brackett, Leigh. Entire body of work
Brown, Fredric. Entire body of work
Burroughs, Edgar Rice. Pellucidar series; Mars series; Venus series
Carter, Lin. World's End series
de Camp, L. Sprague. Lest Darkness Fall; Fallible Fiend, et al.
de Camp, L. Sprague, and Fletcher Pratt. Harold Shea series; Carnelian Cube
Derleth, August. Entire body of work
Dunsany, Lord. Entire body of work
Farmer, Philip Jose. The World of the Tiers series, et al.
Fox, Gardner. Kothar series; Kyrik series, et al.
Howard, Robert E. Conan series
Lanier, Sterling. Hiero's Journey
Lieber, Fritz. Fafhrd & Gray Mouser series (a.k.a. Lankhmar series), et al.
Lovecraft, H.P. Entire body of work, especially his Cthulhu series
Merritt, A. Creep, Shadow, Creep; Moon Pool; Dwellers in the Mirage, et al.
Moorcock, Michael. Stormbringer, Stealer of Souls; Hawkmoon series (especially the first three books)
Norton, Andre. Entire body of work
Offutt, Andrew J., editor. Swords Against Darkness III
Pratt, Fletcher. Blue Star, et al.
Saberhagen, Fred. Changeling Earth, et al.
St. Clair, Margaret. The Shadow People; Sign of the Labrys
Tolkien, J.R.R. The Hobbit; Lord of the Rings trilogy
Vance, Jack. The Eyes of the Overworld; The Dying Earth, et al.
Zelazny, Roger. Jack of Shadows; Amber series, et al.
"Countless hundreds of comic books...the long-gone EC ones certainly had their effect. Science fiction, fantasy, and horror movies were a big influence."

General

Law vs. Chaos
Three Hearts and Three Lions, by Poul Anderson, and the "Elric" series by Michael Moorcock (who apparently based his version of Order vs. Chaos on Anderson's novels).
Barbarian class
Based largely on the character of Conan from Robert E. Howard's series of the same name and on the character of Kothar from Gardner Fox's series of the same name (which is itself obviously based on Howard's Conan stories), with some elements taken from the character of Fahfrd from Fritz Lieber's Lankhmar series.
Druid class
Based loosely on legends surrounding the pre-Christian Celtic priests called "druids."
Paladin class
Based largely on the character of Holger Carlson from Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions, as well as Anderson's original sources, Charlemagne's paladins in the medieval French chansons de geste ("songs of deeds"), particularly The Song of Roland and Ariosto's Orlando Furioso. The paladin's tie to a special war-horse is also from Three Hearts and Three Lions. ("I do not mean a saint, but a warrior whom God gave more than common gifts and then put under a more than common burden." -- Martinus, in Three Hearts and Three Lions, by Poul Anderson.)
Ranger class
Based primarily on the character of Aragorn from Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien.
Thief/Rogue class
Based largely on the character of the Grey Mouser from the "Lankhmar" stories by Fritz Leiber, with some elements taken from Bilbo Baggins from J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit.
Wizard class
Based largely on the wizards in the Dying Earth series by Jack Vance, especially his story "Mazarian the Magician," as well as on other fantasy wizards such as Martinus from Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions, the wizards in John Bellairs' The Face in the Frost, the characters of Gandalf and Saruman in J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings, and the character of Merlin from the King Arthur legends.
The episodic "treasure quest/tomb raiding" style & feel of D&D
In no particular order: The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, the "Lankhmar" short stories by Fritz Leiber, Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson, and the "Cugel" stories from the Dying Earth books by Jack Vance. Those are the most obvious influences, but are far from the only influences.
The "epic quest" style & feel of D&D
In no particular order: The Hobbit & Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien and Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson are two of the most obvious influences in this area from the above list, but they are far from the only such influences.
Planes: Arcadia
Originally a district of Peloponnesian Greece. In the writing of Virgil, Arcadia was a place of pastoral simplicity and happiness, and came into the English language as a general poetic term for such a place.
Planes: Elysium
In Greek mythology, Elysium is where the spirits of good people resided after they died.
Planes: Nine Hells: Avernus
In reality, the name of a lake in Campania in central Italy, known for its sulphurous vapors. Its appearance gave rise to the belief in ancient times that it was a gateway to Hell, and thus the term eventually became a synonym for Hell.
Planes: Nine Hells: Caina
The name used for the first part of the ninth circle of Hell in Dante Alighieri's Inferno, Canto XXXII. Dante describes it as a completely frozen lake formed by the river Cocytus.
Planes: Nine Hells: Dis
In Greek mythology, a synonym for Hades--both the place and, in Virgil's Aeneid (VI, 358 & 524), the god Hades/Pluto. In Dante Alighieri's Inferno, Cantos VIII-IX, Dis a large, walled city in Hell with a well-guarded gate, which is the origin of the D&D plane's description. In Canto XXXIV, Dis is another name for Lucifer.
Planes: Nine Hells: Malbolge
The name is derived from Malebolge, the term used for the Eighth Circle of Hell in Dante Alighieri's Inferno, Cantos XVIII-XXX, and means "evil pouches."
Planes: Pandemonium: Cocytus
The name for one of the major rivers in Hell in Dante Alighieri's Inferno. Dante's description of the river bears no similarity to that of the D&D outer plane.

Magic System & Spells

Memorization system for spells
The Dying Earth series, by Jack Vance, especially his story "Mazarian the Magician."
Spells named partly for their creators, partly for their function, and partly out of whimsy
Dying Earth series, by Jack Vance.
Alter Self
Seemingly extrapolated from an unnamed spell used by the wizard Martinus in Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson.
Fog Cloud
One source is Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson, though it is not named there.
Geas
Primarily taken from the spell of the same name in Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson.
Hypnotic Pattern
Extrapolated from "Felojun's Second Hypnotic Spell" in the story "Mazarian the Magician" in The Dying Earth by Jack Vance.
Imprisonment
Taken from "The Spell of Forlorn Encystment" in Eyes of the Overworld by Jack Vance.
Invisible Servant
Taken from Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson, though the novel only mentions a wizard's invisible servant, not a spell that creates such a servant.
Magic Mouth
Taken from Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson, though the spell is not named there.
Prismatic Spray
Taken from "The Excellent Prismatic Spray" spell in the story "Mazarian the Magician" in The Dying Earth by Jack Vance.

Magic Items

Arrow of Slaying (Dragon)
Heavily glorified version of Bard's arrow from The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien. However, in the novel it was Bard's skill and the chink in Smaug's armor that caused the arrow to do the damage it did; in D&D, this became an inherent ability of the arrow.
Boots of Striding and Springing
"Live Boots" from the story "Mazarian the Magician" in The Dying Earth by Jack Vance; also "seven-league boots" from European folklore.
Carpet of Flying
Derived from the magic carpets often used in the Arabian Nights stories, especially the story of Prince Ahmed, which is itself derived in part from the tale in the Koran of King Solomon's magic carpet.
Dancing and intelligent weapons
"In India...the sword can serve as the embodiment of a deity. In fairy-tales there are self-moving and other miraculous swords." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Ioun stones
Dying Earth series, by Jack Vance
Phylacteries
In modern times, the word solely refers to tiny boxes with written prayers inside that orthodox Jews tie around their foreheads or upper arms. There was a more general meaning, now archaic, that was a synonym for "amulet." This latter meaning is what is used in D&D.
Ring of Invisibility
Gollum's ring from The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien.
Sword, Flame Tongue
Similar in concept to the Dagger of Burning from Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions, but this is merely an indirect influence at best.
Sword, Holy Avenger
Probably an extrapolation from the sword named "Cortana" in Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions, at least in part.
Sword, Vorpal
The sword in the poem "Jabberwocky" by Lewis Carroll.

Monsters

Al-mi'raj
"Monster in Islamic poetry, a yellow hare with a single black horn on its head." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Ant-Lion
Based on a real insect, though one which is not quite that large. ("Monster-figure in bestiaries, because of a linguistic misunderstanding pictured as a lion with the hind-quarters of a gigantic ant. Described in detail in the Physiologus." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.)
Basilisk
Medieval alchemical folklore. "King of serpents, gigantic monster with the body of a cock, iron claws and beak, and a triple snake's tail. Its stare, like that of the Medusa head, is fatal. Killed by holding a mirror up to it." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode. The name is sometimes used in folklore as a synonym for cockatrice. Also is mentioned, though not thoroughly described, in Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions.
Brownie
Scottish superstition. Brownies supposedly would do little jobs at night for the family on whose farm or in whose house they reside. The name comes from being dark or "brown" sprites, as opposed to fairies, who were light or "fair" sprites. The term was popularized in the U.S. in the 19th century via Palmer Cox's Brownie Books series.
Catoblepas
"Ethiopian bull-monster feeding on poisonous herbs. Its breath killed all adversaries. Mentioned by Pliny." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Centaurs
Greek mythology, in which the half-man, half-horse creatures were well-regarded as archers and Chiron the centaur was a renowned scholar.
Chimera
Greek mythology. "Ancient Greek monster in Homer, with the head of a lion, the body of a goat, the tail of a serpent. In Hesiod, it has not a triple body, but three heads--of lion, goat, and snake. Begot by Typhon and Echidna and defeated by Bellerophon." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Couatl
Derived from the feathered serpent god Quetzalcoatl of Aztec myths.
Cockatrice
Medieval alchemical folklore. Created when a snake hatches a rooster's egg, the monster combines features of each creature (wings of a fowl, tail of a dragon, and head of a rooster). According to legend, its gaze is instantly fatal. In folklore, it is sometimes called a basilisk.
Cyclops, Cyclopes
Greek mythology, most famously in the story of Ulysses in Homer's Odyssey.
Demodand
The name (changed slightly from "Deodand" to "Demodand" to add a tie to the word "demon") and evil nature are taken from the Dying Earth series by Jack Vance, but everything else about them was created by TSR's writers.
Demon, Demogorgon
An evil deity, the mention of whose very name supposedly brought down disaster. Tales of Demogorgon go back to the 4th century, and he is also named in John Milton's Paradise Lost, Lodovico Ariosto's Orlando Furioso, Spenser's Faerie Queene, and Percy Bysshe Shelley's Prometheus Unbound, though the actual description used in D&D is apparently Gygax's creation.
Demon, Succubus (also Incubus)
Medieval Christian folklore.
Demon, Type V (Marilith)
Derived from Indian (Hindi) mythology.
Demon, Type VI (Balor)
Originally named Balrog, it was taken from Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. It was renamed "Type VI Demon" (with one example being named "Balor") after the Tolkien estate asked TSR to stop infringing Tolkien's copyrights. In 2nd edition, "Balor" went from being the name of one of these creatures to the name for the type of demon. (The illustration in the 1st edition Monster Manual is also vaguely similar to the demon in the "Night on Bald Mountain" segment of Disney's Fantasia.)
Devil, Asmodeus
An evil spirit or demon in the Apocryphal book of Tobit, the "king of devils" in the Talmud and Hebrew mythology, and an evil spirit or rebel angel in John Milton's Paradise Lost.
Devil, Baalzebul
Derived from the Hebrew "Baalzebub," meaning "lord of flies," which is in turn derived from the Canaanite deity Baal. In the Bible, Jesus is accused of using the power of Beelzebub, the Prince of Devils, to drive out devils (Matthew 12:24). In John Milton's Paradise Lost, Beelzebub is one of the chief lords of Hell, next to Satan.
Devil, Dispater
In Dante Alighieri's Inferno, Canto XXXIV, Dis is another name for Lucifer. "Pater" is Latin for "father," so it is not much of a stretch from there to call the ruler of the city of Dis the "father of Dis" and thereby avoid the possible confusion from calling both the city and the character just "Dis."
Devil, Erinyes
Taken from Greek mythology, where they are also known as the Furies. They are particularly featured in Aeschylus' play Euripides. In some tales, there are only three of them: Tisiphone, Alecto, and Megaera. The picture in the Monster Manual seems to be based on the similar creatures in the movie Jason and the Argonauts, as animated by Ray Harryhausen.
Devil, Geryon
Originally a three-bodied monster from Greek mythology. However, the D&D version is taken directly from Dante Alighieri's Inferno, Cantos XVI-XVII.
Devil, Horned (Malebranche)
Inferno, by Dante Alighieri, Cantos XXI-XXII.
Doppelganger
Loosely derived from German philosophical folklore, in which an apparition representing another side (often evil) of a character's personality appears, and is often an omen the character's imminent death. This, in turn, is derived from the unexplained phenomena of people who claim to have met an exact duplicate of themselves while traveling, who vanishes soon after the meeting; the claimant himself is sometimes said to have died mysteriously soon after the meeting. (The word is from the German doppelgänger, literally meaning "double-walker.")
Dragon
Worldwide folklore. Most of the D&D dragons are derived in large part from European folklore (for example, the dragon fought by Siegfried guarded a horde of treasure), though folkloric dragons almost exclusively breathed fire. Gold dragons and the Oriental dragons (river, sea, cloud, mist, celestial dragons, et al.) are all from Chinese mythology. Tiamat is from Babylonian mythology, though her D&D form is much different from her original appearance. Tiamat was the evil mother of all dragons in Babylonian mythology, which is partly why TSR's writers made her a "prismatic" conglomeration of all of the evil chromatic dragons they created. The character of Smaug from The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien, is an obvious more recent influence.
Drow
Teutonic folklore included both light elves (good) and dark elves (evil). The word "drow" is of Scottish origin, an alternative form of "trow", which is a cognate for "troll". Trow/drow was used to refer to a wide variety of evil sprites. Except for the basic concept of "dark elves", everything else about drow was apparently invented by TSR's writers.
Dryad
Tree nymphs in Greek mythology, such as Eurydice from the myth of Orpheus. Also called hamadryads.
Duergar
The word is [Norse?], roughly a synonym for dwarf. Paracelsus (1493-1541) wrote of gnomes as "earth elementals", and described them as little old men who could shift to the size of giants and were malicious, greedy, and miserable creatures. This would appear to be the origin of D&D duergar.
Dwarf
D&D dwarves are an amalgamation of many sources, including Germanic folklore, Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson, and J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit & Lord of the Rings. The primary sources, especially for D&D dwarven society and lifespans, are The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings; Three Hearts and Three Lions is also an important source, but not as much so as Tolkien's works. (Also, the terms "dwarves" and "dwarven" were coined by Tolkien. The original forms are dwarfs and dwarfish, as evidenced by Disney's movie Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.) The Germanic story The Ring of the Nibelungen and the "Rumpelstiltskin" fairy tale retold by the Brothers Grimm are probably close ancestors of D&D dwarves; Germanic lore depicts dwarves as living in caves, guarding mineral wealth, and being very skillful in making things from stone and minerals. French folklore (and from that, Three Hearts and Three Lions) depict dwarves as forest-dwellers, similar to D&D's hill dwarves. The dwarven ability to detect the slope of an underground passage is specifically mentioned in Three Hearts and Three Lions, which is most likely the immediate source for inclusion of that ability in D&D.
Eagle, Giant
While giant versions of normal animals are a staple of science fiction and fantasy, and are often found in folklore, the D&D version of the giant eagle is lifted directly from The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien.
Elf
D&D elves are an amalgamation of many sources, including folklore, J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit & Lord of the Rings, Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions, the fantasy stories of Lord Dunsany, and other fantasy novels. D&D elven society and lifespans are largely based on Lord of the Rings and, to a lesser extent, Three Hearts and Three Lions. Elves are part of the forces of Chaos in Three Hearts and Three Lions, which is partly why they are of "chaotic" alignment in D&D.
Gargoyle
French folklore. Cathedral-builders carved grotesque faces around downspouts used to route rain run-off away from the sides of the building, partially to ward off evil spirits, partially to find a decorative use for what would otherwise be a plain block of stone, partially to have fun with their work; the English "gargoyle" is derived from the French "gargouille", which is thought to derive from the gargling sound water makes as it pours through these downspouts. Over time, things which originally were done to scare off evil spirits became thought of as evil themselves, as the groteque faces on these downspouts often inspired fear in the common folk. Architecturally speaking, "gargoyles" are used to funnel rain water away from the sides of a building; "grotesques" are similarly-carved statuary or corner blocks that have nothing to do with the building's drainage system.
Genie
Jinn, Efreet (Ifrit), Dao, and Jann all appear as powerful (and usually trickster-like or demonic) creatures in Arabic folklore, sometimes identified with each of the four elements (fire, water, earth, air). The English term "genie" derives from the Latin "genius", which derives from the Arabic "jinni", the plural of "jinn". The lamp-dwelling, wish-granting genie in D&D is taken directly from the Arabian Nights tales.
Ghoul
"Ghul. English: ghoul. An Arabian desert monster, blood-sucker and man-eater. It resembles both man and animal." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode
Gnome
European folklore. According to Webster's dictionary, "One of a fabled race of dwarflike creatures who live underground and guard treasure hoards." Teutonic mythology includes earth spirits closely resembling dwarfs--small, stocky, & generally grotesque. They dwell in the earth and can merge at will with trees or the earth. They occupy their time in quarries & mines deep in the earth, where they are thought to be guardians of fabulous treasures. Paracelsus (1493-1541) wrote of the four elements and the four types of elementals: fire = salamander, water = nereid, air = sylph, earth = gnome. Gnomes looked like little old men.
Goblin
Very loosely based on The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien, and possibly more so on the goblins from Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions. ("Goblin" has the same Germanic root as the word "kobold". Both mean 'evil sprites'; Goblin from English folklore, kobold is from German. In English folklore, it is a general term for any malevolent misshapen or grotesque creature that lives in dark places.)
Golem
Animated man-shaped statue from Medieval Jewish folklore. The golem was made of clay, and was created to protect the Jewish quarter of Prague in the late middle ages, around 1500-1600. The name of God was written either on a piece of paper placed in its mouth, or on its forehead, which gave it life. It eventually went on a rampage until its creator managed to remove the slip of paper from its mouth or erase the letters from its forehead, which turned it back into a clay statue. As the story goes, the golem is still hidden somewhere in the city, ready to be re-animated to protect the local Jews from their persecutors.
Golem, Flesh
This is exactly the creature from Frankenstein, or the Modern Prometheus, by Mary Shelley.
Gorgon
Edward Topsell in his 1607 History of 4-footed Beasts, included a bit translated from Conrad Gesner's 1551 Historiae animalium that was a description of a Gorgon as a [four-legged] animal with dragon's scales, pig's teeth, a poisonous mane, human hands, and lethal breath, that was a native of Africa and supposedly was bred in Libya. This description is possibly based on misunderstandings of Greek descriptions of Medusa's sisters.
Griffin, Gryphon
Medieval folklore, most often depicted with the body and rear legs of a lion, and the head, wings, and front legs of an eagle, and still used as a heraldic device. Composite creatures such as this were apparently a favorite of the authors of medieval bestiaries. More immediately, a "griffin" is mentioned (but not depicted) in Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions.
Half-elf
The character of Elrond (and his family) from The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien is the origin for the half-elf, but the D&D version is significantly changed from Tolkien's view. For example, Tolkien's half-elves had to choose whether they would be elves or men, and as a result had lifespans typical for the race of their choice, whereas D&D half-elves are a true amalgamation of elves and men.
Halfling
Halflings were originally hobbits, taken from The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. They were renamed "halflings" when the Tolkien estate asked TSR to stop infringing on Tolkien's copyrights. 3rd edition D&D halflings are an amalgamation of 2nd edition halflings with Dragonlance's kender.
Harpy
Greek mythology.
Hippocampus
Medieval bestiaries. Depicted as the front half of a horse and the rear half of a fish or sea-serpent. The name is a Latinate construction, used because most scholarly books of the period were written in Latin and no common name already existed for such a beast.
Hippogriff, Hippogryph
"Horse-griffin (horse's body) with eagle's head and wings." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Homonculus
Medieval alchemical folklore. Homunculi were created through use of various powders, rare earths, potions, etc., and were lesser than man because only God could create Man from scratch; man could only create lesser beings at best. Mandrake root is sometimes given as the primary ingredient, since it usually appears vaguely man-shaped.
Hydra
Greek mythology. The classical form is the Lernaean hydra, which had nine heads and could only be killed by cutting off all of its heads--however, whenever one was cut off, two more quickly grew in its place. Hercules defeated it by using a torch to immediately cauterize each stump as he cut heads off, thus preventing new ones from growing. The cryohydra and pyrohydra variants were apparently created by TSR's writers.
Ki-rin
Chinese mythology, sometimes written "Ch'i-lin" (depending on one's transliteration scheme). "Chinese male-female form of unicorn; symbolic of grandeur, felicity, noble offspring and good administration." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Kobold
Extrapolation from the kobolds of Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions; also, cave-dwelling evil sprites from German folklore. (Note that the mineral cobalt is named for supposedly having the same blue/green color as German kobolds.)
Lamassu
"Winged lion, or winged bull with human head, of late Assyrian times. Guardian spirit of the city of Assur." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Lamia
"Greek witch who devours children, also called Mormolicoe. She has cow's feet and cat's claws.... In the Alexander romance, very beautiful women, larger than life, with long hair and horse's feet" -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode. The origin is from the Greek myth of Lamia, Queen of Lybia, who ate children, and whose own later children were cursed with half-human/half-animal bodies. When the authors and artists of medieval bestiaries got their hands on this one, it became a scaled 4-legged beast with claws on the front paws, hooves on the rear, and a woman's head and breasts.
Leucrotta
From Roman folklore, mentioned in Pliny's Natural History. (Also known there as "leucocrotta")
Lich, lych
A lychgate is an entrance to a churchyard where a body rests before burial--"lych" means person or dead body (From German "Leiche", meaning "dead body, cadaver, corpse"). The D&D lich is very similar to a character from Taran Wanderer, by Lloyd Alexander, a magician with an unnaturally-extended life who can only die if the item he has stored his soul in is broken (in this case, a bone from his little finger); however, the term "lich" is never used in the book. The origin of both the D&D lich and Alexander's character is probably the Russian folkloric character "Kotshchey the Deathless", also an unnaturally long-lived magician (or demon) who was almost impossible to kill.
Lycanthrope
Worldwide folklore. Werewolves are found throughout European folklore, and tales of men turning into other creatures are found all over the world. The word is a medieval Latin creation (used in bestiaries and the like), based on Greek.
Lycanthrope, Werebear
Largely based on the character of Beorn from The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien.
Lycanthrope, Wereboar
Possibly from the tale of Circe from Homer's Odyssey?
Lycanthrope, Werefox
Possibly North American Indian mythology?
Lycanthrope, Weretiger
Possibly Hindu mythology?
Lycanthrope, Werewolf
At least partially based on the character of Lawrence Talbot from the 1930's Universal Pictures movie The Werewolf, and also derived in large part from the werewolf in Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions.
Manticore
"Monster mentioned in [medieval] bestiaries, probably of Indian provenance, according to a report by Ctesias." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode. More immediately, mentioned (though not described) in Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions.
Medusa
Greek mythology, from the tale of Perseus, though it is a proper name there rather than a type of creature. "Gorgon" was the general term used to describe Medusa and her sisters, but TSR's writers used medusa as a general term, and gorgon for a different kind of beast (specifically, a creature found in old European bestiaries).
Mermaid
Greek folklore, though similar tales can be found in the tales of sea-faring cultures around the world. The D&D form is basically identical to fairy tales from the 19th-20th centuries, such as The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Anderson, which were related to European sailor's tales from the 17th-19th centuries. All of these owe their source to the Greek myth of the Sirens.
Minotaur
Greek mythology. Bull-man creature who lived in Minos' labyrinth of Crete; usually portrayed as a hairy man with the head and rear hoofs of a bull. ("Minotaur" means "Minos' bull")
Mummy
1930's Universal Pictures movie. Egyptian beliefs had the mummy moving on to the next life, not returning to this one. Even the supposed curse of Tutankamun, which was part of the influence for the movie, involved the curse's power making people catch deadly diseases and/or suddenly drop dead, not anything to do with the walking dead. The movie (and the Egyptology fads of the early 20th century that spawned it) is the first place walking mummies are seen.
Naga
"Naga. Indian [Hindi] demigods, part snake, part man." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode. The accompanying picture depicts a creature with the body of a snake and the head of a man.
Nereid
Sea-nymphs from Greek mythology.
Nixie
Nixies are water elves from European folklore, sometimes depicted as mermaids. The D&D nixie is taken directly from Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions, including the desire to enslave humans, the ability to cast water breathing on victims, their weakness to a flaming sword (a flaming dagger in the novel) and light-related magic, and ability to summon fish to swarm the bearer of such a light.
Nymph
Greek mythology. Female sprites who are the embodiment of beauty and female lust.
Orc
Very loosely based on The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien, which was in turn based on creatures from English folklore.
Pegasus
Greek mythology, from the tale of Bellerophon.
Peryton
Greek folklore that the souls of the lonely manifest as dangerous half-deer/half-eagle creatures that cast human-shaped shadows.
Phoenix
"A wonder-bird, which according to Herodotus flies once every five hundred years from India to Egypt, burns itself there on a pyre and arises renewed from the ashes." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Roc
"Enormous bird, probably of Persian origin, said to live in India... best known from the tales of Sindbad the Sailor" -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Satyr
Greek mythology. Half-man, half-goat forest creatures who are the embodiment of unbridled male lust. "Faun" is the Roman term for the same creature.
Scorpion-man
"Sumerian and Akkadian monster-figure, Girtablulu, created by Tiamat to do battle with the gods. Gilgamesh meets him on his wanderings." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Sea-Horse
Horse-like aquatic creature from Sinbad's first voyage in the Arabian Nights.
Shedu
"Human-headed, winged bull-monster of Assyrian-Babylonian mythology." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Simurgh
"An enormous bird, which lived before Adam. Al-Mas'udi describes it as having a human face.... Gigantic bird of Persian mythology." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode.
Skeleton
The concept of animated skeletons rising up to attack the living occurs in folklore all over the world, but one possible more immediate source for the D&D version is the movie Jason and the Argonauts.
Sphinx, Androsphinx
Based on Egyptian statues with a lion's body and a man's head.
Sphinx, Criosphinx
Based on Egyptian statues with a lion's body and a ram's head. (The Greek word "Crios" means "ram")
Sphinx, Gynosphinx
Greek myth of Oedipus. In the tale, Thebes was beset by a monster with the body of a winged lion, but the head and chest of a woman. It posed a riddle to all travelers, and would eat all who answered it wrong. Oedipus was the first to answer it correctly. The Greek monster is based on the Egyptian creature; note that Thebes is in Egypt.
Svirfneblin
Scandinavian folklore.
Swanmay
"Swan maiden" is a "[t]erm for the Valkyries in Nordic mythology. In fairy-tales they are supernatural beings, who fly down to earth, mostly to bathe, laying aside their winged or feathered garb." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode. Also, one of Grimms' tales includes seven maidens cursed to turn into swans. The D&D swanmay is actually taken from one of the major characters in Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson, who based his "swan-may" on the folkloric swan maidens.
Tarrasque
The Tarasque (one "r") was a dragon-like creature that lived near Tarascon, France. It was a giant, hulking, turtle-like fire-breathing beast with six legs and armor-like scales that were impervious to even the sharpest weapons. The sheer size and invincibility were about the only recognizable features that were kept when TSR turned this into a D&D creature, however.
Treant
The original name, "ent," betrays the creature's origins in Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. Except for the name, which was changed along with hobbit and balrog at the behest of the Tolkien estate, the creature is essentially identical to how it appeared in Tolkien's books.
Triton
Merman from Greek mythology.
Troll
While trolls can be found throughout folklore, and are well-known to readers of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit, the D&D troll comes from Three Hearts and Three Lions, by Poul Anderson, including the long nose and rubbery skin, ability to regenerate, and weakness to fire.
Unicorn
"Found in the legends of many countries. Often derived from the rhinoceros and explained as a real animal, or interpreted as the profile view of a two-horned animal... But in the literature of many peoples, unicorns occur clearly as fabulous animals." -- Fabulous Beasts and Demons, by Heinz Mode. The D&D unicorn is straight out of medieval European tales, like the Unicorn Tapestries, that involve it being the ultimate purity, susceptible to virgins, able to purify water with the horn, the horn being a powerful item to use in alchemical creations, etc.
Wight
The D& D wight is directly derived from the barrow-wight in Lord of the Rings, by J.R.R. Tolkien. The word "wight" is the Anglicized form of the Germanic "wicht", which now means "elf, goblin, dwarf, gnome", but originally simply meant "a being". The English word used to mean "a human being", but changed to be a term for a type of malicious sprite during the 14th-16th centures, as happened with many English synonyms for "person", including hob, pukka, orc, and boggart.
Will-o'-wisp
English folklore, probably based on swamp lights or marsh gas, or possibly the way lanterns look through a thick fog.
Worg
The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien, though "warg" is also used as a term for the giant wolf form of a werewolf in Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions.
Wyvern
Medieval heraldry & folklore, in which it is a dragon with wings, two legs, and a barbed tail. ("Wivere" is a Saxon word meaning "serpent".)

Bibliography:

Bené's Reader's Encyclopedia, 3rd ed. New York : Harper & Row, 1987.

Borges, Jorge Luis Book of Imaginary Beings.

Dragons. Chicago : Time-Life Books, 1984. (The Enchanted World series.)

Hamilton, Edith. Mythology. Boston : Little, Brown, 1942.

Mode, Heinz. Fabulous Beasts and Demons. London : Phaidon Press, 1975. Translated from Fabeltiere und Dämonen. Germany : Edition Leipzig, 1973.

South, Malcom, editor. Mythical & Fabulous Creatures: a Source Book & Research Guide.

http://webhome.idirect.com/~donlong/mon ... nsters.htm

As for the argument that all those books are based on Tolkien's Lord of the Rings...

Lord of the Rings was first published in 1954-55 (U.K.)/ 1955-56 (U.S.) (The Hobbit was published 1937 (U.K.) & 1938 (U.S.), then republished in 1951 & 1966, the latter of which are probably the times when most U.S. readers first read it). Here are six fantasy works that break the assumption that modern fantasy is entirely based on Lord of the Rings. Note that all but the first of them were cited by Gygax as sources for D&D. (Unless otherwise noted, all publication dates are for publication in the U.S., which is the most likely time that Gygax would have been able to read them.)

E.R. Eddison, The Worm Ouroboros, published 1922 (U.K.), 1926 (U.S.) (This is the fantasy book to which reviewers at the time compared Tolkien's books. However, Gygax didn't mention it in the DMG, so it's almost certainly not a direct inflience on D&D. It is definitely a worthwhile read, though.)
Poul Anderson. Three Hearts & Three Lions, short version published 1953. (Full version published 1961.) (This book, based on the medieval French story The Song of Roland, was heavily used as a source for D&D for elements such as paladins, trolls, and nixies, among other things.)
L. Sprague deCamp & Fletcher Pratt. Incompleat Enchanter, published 1941. (This is the first in the "Harold Shea" series.)
Fritz Lieber. Lankhmar stories, first was published by 1939 at the latest. (This book provided the template for the thief/rogue, as well as a large part of the general feel of questing for treasure & meeting monsters on the way.)
A. Merrit. Moon Pool, published 1919; Creep Shadow Creep, published 1934.
Jack Vance. Dying Earth stories; the first was published by 1950 at the latest. (These stories are the origin of D&D's magic system as well as several of the spells and magic items.)

If you read all the books & authors listed in as sources in the 1st ed. Dungeon Masters Guide, you can see that yes, Lord of the Rings was definitely AN influence on the game, but definitely not THE influence--deCamp, Leiber, Merrit, Vance, Anderson, et al. had as much, if not more, influence on D&D. Given the relevant publication dates, those stories by those authors were definitely NOT influenced by Lord of the Rings.
---


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 Post subject: Re: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:27 am 
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No mention of the Robe of Eyes?

Apparently, the author didn't read the World of Tiers series, either, or would have mentioned it under the Giant Eagle heading, as well as Giant Weasel, and several others Giant Otter/Weasel creatures are also found in Hiero's Journey, as are giant frogs and what appear to be a form of bullywugs.

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 Post subject: Re: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:30 am 
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Wow, that's quite extensive, and a good find. There may be a few sources I would question as the "Primary" source. For instance, Conan is based on historical european "barbarians", so I wouldn't really say he is the primary source of the barbarian class (although he is clearly a good example of it).

Nice list though, thanks for sharing.


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 Post subject: Re: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:33 am 
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I should add I don't agree with alot of these but its a good starting point. Definitely some good info.


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 Post subject: Re: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:43 am 
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silver wrote:
I should add I don't agree with alot of these but its a good starting point. Definitely some good info.


Very true. :mrgreen:

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 Post subject: Re: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 8:33 am 
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Eyeball360 wrote:
Conan is based on historical european "barbarians", so I wouldn't really say he is the primary source of the barbarian class (although he is clearly a good example of it).
You could argue that Conan is the "primary" example since his stories seem to be the earliest examples in Appendix N or this style of character, plus the fact that Conan is probably the most famous example of such.

Remember, we're looking at primary source literature inspriations for the original RPGs, not the sources that inspired the literature which made up the inspiration for Appendix N.

For example, Bram Stoker's "Dracula" could be the primary source for modern-day vampire gaming, but Stoker didn't invent the vampire. He just popularized the fiction. Or perhaps Christopher Lee's Dracula movies could have been the inspiration for vampires in gaming, yet the movies were based on the book.

It's not about who did it first, but who inspired Gygax and Arneson to create D&D.

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 Post subject: Re: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 9:45 am 
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oh okay, thanks for explaining to me.


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 Post subject: Re: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 10:27 am 
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A great resource. Thanks!

Just yesterday I finished reading "Cugel's Saga" by Jack Vance. I really enjoyed it both as a fantasy story and as reference material for playing a thief or rogue in an RPG. Cugel isn't just a robber, he's a charlatan, con artist, shady businessman and adventurer. Even if he wasn't an original inspiration for Thieves, he's a great role model now.

Not to spoil any surprises, I think Vance's stories in "Cugel's Saga" and "The Eyes of the Overworld" are also a good resource for Gamemasters who want {cheesy yet plausible reasons to remove all the hero's treasure at the end of each adventure...} (Highlight to read).


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 Post subject: Re: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 12:07 pm 
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Very cool list, I was looking for something like this for a while! Bravo!

The thief also takes elements from Cugel the Clever, who not only reads scrolls but also manages to screw up spells.

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 Post subject: Re: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 1:01 pm 
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finarvyn wrote:
Eyeball360 wrote:
Conan is based on historical european "barbarians", so I wouldn't really say he is the primary source of the barbarian class (although he is clearly a good example of it).
You could argue that Conan is the "primary" example since his stories seem to be the earliest examples in Appendix N or this style of character, plus the fact that Conan is probably the most famous example of such.

Remember, we're looking at primary source literature inspriations for the original RPGs, not the sources that inspired the literature which made up the inspiration for Appendix N.


Gary Gygax was friends with Gardner Fox, and enjoyed his work very much. Although I have no doubt that Fox's barbarian heroes were Conan-inspired, I would have to agree with the OP's source that Fox and Fritz Leiber were also important sources.

The more I read Appendix N, the more I am surprised by how many sources there are for various ideas, though. Might not Hok the Mighty have partially inspired the D&D barbarian? I definitely see the "11th Commandmenters" in Hiero's Journey as being inspirational to the druid.

I should be keeping a log of D&D/DCC elements as they arise in my reading, rather than relying on my impressions after the fact!

RC

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 Post subject: Re: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2012 7:20 pm 
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Eyeball360 wrote:
oh okay, thanks for explaining to me.
Not to say that your thought wasn't a good one. One could certainly go back to those early authors and figure out where they got their inspiration as well. I suspect it would be more of a literary analysis than a game design list, but it would be an interesting project. For example, folks generally credit Poul Anderson with the main inspiration for alignment (law versus chaos in Three Hearts and Three Lions) but he most likely got his idea from someone before him.

Another interesting list would be a "DCC RPG Specific Appendix N" which would indicate which of the Appendix N books most influenced Joseph in the creation of the DCC RPP. I mean, with all of the authors on the list he must have decided that certain books were perfect for the design of the game as he imagined it and others less so. For example, Tolkien's works are in Gary's Appendix N list but clearly his elves don't fit the DCC RPG style as much as Anderson's elves. That would be a fun list to see! 8)

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 Post subject: Re: Appendix N broken down by references
PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2012 9:03 pm 
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Raven_Crowking wrote:

Gary Gygax was friends with Gardner Fox, and enjoyed his work very much. Although I have no doubt that Fox's barbarian heroes were Conan-inspired, I would have to agree with the OP's source that Fox and Fritz Leiber were also important sources.

RC


AFAIK Gardner Fox was the first author to use the word "Lich" in reference to an undead wizard. The usage appears in Kothar of the Magic Sword. Possibly other works, but that's the only volume of the Kothar series I've examined.

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