the_scapegoat: (OOC cherub)
After browsing a book at the library to dig up some research on Azazeal, I made some notes that I hope to eventually expand upon. This will be added to.

There are three main spellings for his name, Azazel, Azael, and Hazazel as well as many others variations. As is noted on his userpage, Azazeal is the spelling used by HEX, why I don't know, but it's claimed that it was a 'stylistic' decision by the producers (or maybe they just didn't do any research? No, that would never have happened!).

In Levititicus 16:8 on the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur) two goats would be chosen and one would be given to God and the other "marked for Azazel" and be cast out into the wilderness.

In The Zohar (Vayeze 153a) the rider on the serpent is named as "the evil Azazel."

Ireanaeus calls him "that fallen and yet mighty angel."

Apocalypse of Abraham calls him "lord of Hell, seducer of mankind."

His true demon form is apparently, 7 serpent heads, 14 faces, and 12 which Azazeal is just looking at me and snickering.

Milton's Paradise Lost I, 534 describes Azazel as "a cherub tall", fallen, and Satan's standard bearer.

Islamic writings, he is known as Iblis, meaning "despair" and refused to obey God and bow down to Adam.

(Davidson, Gustav. "Dictionary of Angels." Toronto: Collier MacMillan, 1967.Pages 63-64)

So, what does this mean for Azazeal?

For one thing, I shall keep to the HEX spelling to keep him separate from other uses in fandom of the demon, but he will answer to all, if need be. Even Iblis. :D Speaking of which, as I do write (very occasionally) [ profile] stitch_intime who is also Iblis I view them as one but also different aspects. [ profile] stitch_intime is more associated with Islamic writings and with the Djinn and Shaitan.

As well as Milton's description of being a cherub tall, I've come across other sources that point to him having been one of the Cherubim before his Fall. This puts him as being in the second highest rank in angelic hierarchy. Now, because the word 'cherub' has the connotation of cute winged babies, and Azazeal definitely isn't that, if I mention his former standing, I'll use (erroneously) 'cherubim' the plural...or 'kerub' (Hebrew) or 'karabu' (Assyrian/Babylonian).

Once he fell, it gets confusing as sometimes Azazeal is referred to as being Satan himself or Satan's standard bearer. Whatever his position is, he can be surmised that he is quite senior in Hell' hierarchy. HEX implies this too, when he tells a surprised Remiel that he has been recalled to Hell, and that even he has to answer to someone (Lucifer, I presume), and this is how I write him as pretty much only answering to Lucifer (when he feels like it). As for his true demonic form...I'm just going to stick with the one portrayed in HEX, much easier.

Okay, now I come to the sticking point of the Nephilim. This is what Azazeal and his brothers were called in HEX. Although, as I note on the userpage, this is wrong. The 200 that Fell after falling in love/being seduced were the Grigori (also called Watchers) and the Nephilim were the offspring of those unions. This mistake in canon has never sat well with me, despite the fact that I made it his journal name. And as I've written him more, it's sat even less well for the simple fact that it is wrong, and I can't see a logical reason why HEX made it this way. They did use the term Watchers, so why not Grigori? Anyway, I'm not going to go back and change every instance of "Nephilim" nor will I totally rule it out of usage in the future, although it will be more used in describing Azazeal, Remiel and others of the 200 in their demonic forms. Instead, I'll use Grigori more. Watchers will be used sparingly to save any confusion with Highlander or Buffy fandoms.

I know some of the things mentioned here are pretty basic, especially for anyone with Biblical or Rabbinic literature, but 1) I'm still researching this myself, and 2) what I do know I wanted to lay out simply so that those not so familiar can understand.

It's poll time! )

June 2010

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