Girl, why are you here? What are you researching? Nevermind. We don’t want to know. If you don’t ask us why we’ve Googled the creepy Elevator Game and Ouija board rules, we won’t ask why you’re looking up demon names. Of course, we have a few ideas. Whether you’re playing a demon in your favorite video game, creating a demon for your next Dungeons and Dragons campaign or just trying to name an evil character (demon or not), these demon names might be the way to go. Just be careful. Like Taylor Swift (roughly) said, “Play scary games, you win scary prizes.” The more we looked into these scary AF demons, the higher the hair on our arms seemed to raise. Our stupid prize for this research: Nightmares. Lots and lots of nightmares.
These names are, of course, a drop in the bucket. While Japanese demons and African demons have some of the best names and stories, there are also demons in Native American lore and Turkish history. And let’s not forget all the fictional demons you can find in pop culture. And remember all of the demons mentioned across various religions. Looking for the perfect demon name is a bit of a wild ride. Hopefully, you’ll find some inspiration right here.
Japanese Demon Names
While not all cultures subscribe to the concept of demons, the Japanese have long held their existence. In Japanese culture, demons, or oni, are often women known as hannya in the Noh Theater. Hannya were women consumed by rage or jealousy that turned into demons even before they died. (So, kind of like they’re possessed.) There are also Japanese yokai which, though hard to classify, are often considered demons. We’re saving some names for a list of female demons further down. However, here are some popular male oni and yokai.
- Aka Manto — Aka Manto terrorizes women’s restrooms and gives women impossible choices. No matter what they choose, they’ll die.
- Amanojaku — Don’t let Amanojaku’s small size fool you. “Jaku” means “evil” in Japanese.
- Gashadokuro — These demons are actually giant skeletons and they get more fulfillment at the sight of splattered blood than anything else.
- Jubokko — Jubokko are murderous trees that, weirdly enough, also have the power to heal… if they want to do so.
- Kappa — Giant, red, river-dwelling frogs that want to kill you? Sounds fun!
- Obariyon — Cute, but super deadly, Obariyon pounce on tourists and grow increasingly heavier until they crush them.
- Shuten Dōji — This guy has fifteen eyes and five horns. He’s also bright red and 50 feet tall.
First, we should start by saying that Africa is a continent, not a country. As such, there are multiple cultures and religions, meaning there are a ton of different possible demons to choose from. We decided to include a few of our most favorite and the most interesting demon lore we found while researching.
- Aicha Kandicha (Morocco) — This demon gal is believed to reside near water and is known for being so beautiful she can lure men to her. Once she’s got her proverbial claws in the man, she drives him crazy and then murders him.
- Kishi (Angola) — Kishi seem to be the male response to Aicha Kandicha. In this story, the Kishi has two faces, one of an attractive male and the other of a hyena. The attractive male lures women close and then the hyena face devours them.
- Mbwiri (Central Africa) — There is some evidence that many cases of Mbwiri possession are actually just a link to epilepsy. During a possession, a shaman is called and the Mbwiri and the shaman drive out the demon together.
- Tibicena (Canary Islands) — There’s not a lot of information about the Tibicena, other than it’s believed these demons resemble dogs and they’ll attack basically anyone.
- Zār (Cairo) — Stories about Zār can be found throughout the horn of Africa. It’s believed that Zār mostly possesses women and tortures them.
Native American Demons
Demons from Indigenous people’s folklore are eerily tied to the flaws of humanity. These demons below inspire both self-reflection and terror.
- Wendigo — The wendigo is the embodiment of evil. It is a cannibalistic man-eating monster. Legend has it wendigos are human beings who have been consumed with selfishness and gluttony.
- Skin Walkers — Skin walkers have crooked bodies and human-like faces with red eyes. They are usually people who practice medicine or healing who have used their powers for evil. Skin walkers are also demons who are manifested from the terrible deeds of man.
Ars Goetia Demon Names
The term “Ars Goetia” seems to come from The Lesser Key of Solomon which is a grimoire of demonology, in essence, a book of magic that includes instructions on summoning spirits. In this case, specifically demons. While the original text that made up The Lesser Key of Solomon was much older, the book itself was compiled sometime in the 17th century. So, we’re talking about some seriously old demons, often also referred to in religious texts. The Ars Goetia was one of five part of the book, which specifically dealt with the summoning of demons. There are 72 demons listed in the Ars Goetia, including nine “king” demons. These are the most interesting.
- Baal/Bael — Baal has invisibility powers and seems to be the head of all the demons. Fitting… since he has three heads. He also keeps a toad and man with him.
- Vine — King Vine is also an Earl who can conjure storms and turn the sea. We’re most intrigued by the imagery he evokes. Vine is most often depicted as a man with a lion’s head, riding a large black bear and also carrying a snake.
- Zagan — On the surface, Zagan seems like the most “anti-God.” He’s known for turning wine into water. But, he can also turn it back into wine. He can also turn blood into wine or oil. Seems useful, albeit creepy. Another skill: He can make currency out of whatever metal happens to be in his possession.
- Valefar — This Duke of Hell seems like a bit of a trickster. He’s the demon who tempts people to steal and is in charge of continuing relationships with Earth-bound thieves.
- Zepar — Zepar is kind of the worst and incredibly cruel. A bit of an evil cupid, this Duke makes women fall for men and then matches the two together… only to then make the woman barren.
All Demon Names From The Ars Goetia
Meaning: “50 legions has control”
Meaning: The Great Duke of Hell
Meaning: A fallen angel
Meaning: Beloved or well-loved
Meaning: Man or warrior
Meaning: A peacock who transforms into a human
Meaning: A Great Earl of Hell
Meaning: Wrath or demon
Meaning: A Great Duke of Hell and part of the evil trinity
Meaning: Owner or lord
Meaning: Uncle or man with a beard
Meaning: Inner, inward, or hidden
Dungeons and Dragons Demon Names
While in some worlds, demons and devils are one and the same, in D&D, they’re two very different entities. There are also two different types of demons. The Obyrinth are an ancient race that actually lived long before humans. The Tanar’ri were originally created as Obyrinth’s slaves. They rebelled and are now the more dominant species of demon.
The Queen of Chaos
Female Demon Names
Abyzou (Jewish mythology)
Agrat bat Mahlat (Jewish mythology)
Al Ana (Turkish folklore)
Eisheth (Jewish mythology)
Jorōgumo (Japanese yokai)
Kiyohime (Japanese oni)
Kuchisake-onna (Japanese oni)
Kyōkotsu (Japanese yokai, inspiration for The Ring)
Nure Onna (Japanese yokai)
Oiwa (Japanese oni)
Ruby (From ‘Supernatural’)
Uji no hashihime (Japanese oni)
Yamauba (Japanese oni)
Yuki-onna (Japanese oni)
Aatrox (League of Legends)
Meaning: Savage or cruel
Abalam (The Last Exocism)
Meaning: The name of a demonic king who served Paimon, a Goetic demon
Aku (Samurai Jack)
Meaning: Moon god
Alichino (Dante’s Inferno)
Meaning: The Italian word for harlequin. It’s also the name of a Malebranche member, a group in charge of guarding the Bolgia Five in the Eight Circles of Hell.
Balthazar (Evil Dead)
Meaning: “Bel protects the King”
Meaning: Uncle or man with a beard
Farfarello (Dante’s Inferno)
Wendigo (Pet Cemetery and Supernatural)
Demon Name Generator
None of these suit your fancy? You’re in luck! You still have two options. One, you can do some more research and you’ll discover that our giant list of demon names is still only a drop in the bucket. Or you can use a handy-dandy demon name generator to find the perfect (but probably made-up) demon name for whatever demon you’re dreaming up.