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Characters from original Howard works

The Phoenix on the Sword


Ascalante is an outlaw who conspires to assassinate Conan.

  • Ambition Is Evil: He plans to assassinate Conan as part of a plan to become the King of Aquilonia. In Conan the Liberator, Thulandra Thuu tells Ascalante that he is aware of "your [Ascalante's] lust for high office, [and] a certain lack of scruple as regards the means whereby you hope to attain it."
  • Betrayal Insurance: He has a hermit with information about Thoth-Amon, who is to reveal it to Thoth-Amon's enemies in the event he betrays Ascalante.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Downplayed. He is a cunning mastermind who comes close to orchestrating Conan's demise, but he is undone by the Contrived Coincidence of Dion having Thoth-Amon's Ring of Power, giving Thoth-Amon the opportunity to regain is power halfway through the story. Once Thoth-Amon does so, he becomes a greater threat than Ascalante, summoning a demon who kills Ascalante with ease during the story's climax.
  • Blackmail: He threatens to have one one his allies reveal Thoth-Amon to his enemies in order to keep him under control.
  • Cain and Abel: In Conan the Liberator, it is implied that Ascalante murdered his elder brother in order to become the Count of Thune.
  • The Chessmaster: He schemes to undermine Conan's rule, before using various method to arrange the removal of Conan's allies from the city in order make Conan's assassination easier.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: Towards the end of the story, he is killed by Thoth-Amon's demon, who becomes Conan's final opponent.
  • Dragon-in-Chief: To the Rebel Four. Although he nominally working for them, it is his planning that makes the scheme possible.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: He derides Conan's decision not to purge the survivors of Numedides' dynasty. This is a case of Villain Has a Point as Conan will come to regret Numedides' relatives like Dion or Arpello trying to take back the throne by birthright.
  • Impoverished Patrician: He is a former count reduced to the life of an outlaw.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: He is abusive to his slave Thoth-Amon, who himself was once a feared Evil Sorcerer.
  • Lean and Mean: The narration of The Phoenix on the Sword describes him as "a tall, lean, man."
  • Saved by Canon: Due to his appearance in The Phoenix on the Sword, Ascalante's survival in the prequel story Conan the Liberator is a Foregone Conclusion.
  • The Starscream: He plans to betray the Rebel Four and make himself King of Aquilonia.
  • A Taste of the Lash: He inflicts this on Thoth-Amon.
  • Tempting Fate: Before breaking into Conan's chambers with the intention of assassinating him, he smugly says that "Conan sleeps." Once he breaks into Conan's chambers, he finds out that Conan is awake, armed, and partially armored.
  • Unknown Rival: When he confronts Conan during the climax of The Phoenix on the Sword, Conan does not recognize him.
  • The Usurper: He attempts to usurp the throne of Aquilonia.
  • Villain Cred: In Conan the Liberator, Thulandra Thuu claims that he and Numedides approve of Ascalante's reputation as an ambitious, unscrupulous man.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: He plans on crushing the Rebel Four after Conan as been defeating.

    Baron Dion 

Dion is an Aquilonia nobleman who seeks to overthrow Conan.

  • Aristocrats Are Evil: He is a nobleman seeking to usurp his king.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: He is attempting become King of Aquilonia, but he is a pawn for Ascalante, who carries out most of the planning for the assassination attempt, and plans to betray Dion afterwords. Halfway through the story, he is unceremoniously killed by Thoth-Amon in order to reclaim a Ring of Power that Dion showed off to him, with Dion being unaware of the ring's true importance.
  • Fat Bastard: He is an overweight man who is plotting treason.
  • Unwitting Pawn: To Ascalante.
  • The Usurper: He is attempting to have Conan assassinated so he can take his place. He is killed before he can ever reach that point.

    Count Volmana 
The Count of Karaban, who is a member of the Rebel Four who seeks to despose Conan.

    Epemitreus the Sage 
Epemitreus is a sage who lives centuries before Conan's time, having dedicated his life opposing Set. Even after his death, he appears to Conan in a dream to help him combat Set's influence.
  • Dead Person Conversation: Despite being long dead, he is still able to converse with Conan.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: The stairs in the tomb a carved with depictions of Set so that anyone who climbs those stairs ends up stepping on his head with every step they took.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: In The Phoenix of the Sword, Epemitreus mentions how during his lifetime, he "drove [Set] into the shadows of the mysterious south"
  • Long-Lived: In Thew Phoenix on the Sword, he mentions that he lived three times as long as a regular person.
  • Posthumous Character: He died 1,500 years before Conan's time.

The commander of the Black Legion, he joins the Rebel Four so he can lead the army of Aquilonia.
  • Ambition Is Evil: Not content with simply leading the Black Legion, he betrays Conan so he can lead the entire Aquilonian army.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: In Conan the Liberator, he betrays King Numedides by defecting to the rebel general Conan. In The Phoenix on the Sword, he betrays the now-King Conan by conspiring to assassinate him with Ascalante, Dion, Volmana, and Rinaldo.
  • Dark Is Evil: He leads the Black Legion, and he betrays Conan for his own ambition.
  • Evil Counterpart: To Pallantides. They both command units that begins with the word "Black," but Gromel is a traitor while Pallantides is loyal.
  • Interservice Rivalry: With Pallantides, who commands the Black Dragons.
  • Unwitting Pawn: To Ascalante.

    King Numedides

King Numedides was Conan's predecessor to the throne of Aquilonia, slain by Conan himself when Conan took the throne.

  • 0% Approval Rating: While sycophants notwithstanding, his rule proved sufficiently unpopular that the entire realm would prefer a foreigner barbarian as king than Numedides himself.
  • Adaptation Expansion: By default, since any appearance of him in non-Howard adaptations is this considering that he is dead in the book he is referenced and never appears in any Howard book beyond this point.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: In Conan the Liberator, Numedides, despite nominally being the head of the regime Conan is trying to depose, is only a puppet to Thulandra Thuu, rather than the powerful ruler, and eventually the god, that be purports himself to be.
  • Blood Bath: In the Marvel comics, Numedides expressed the desire to become immortal and enlisted the services of a sorcerer to sacrifice young women so he could bathe in their blood.
  • The Caligula: He was an unstable ruler with godlike delusions and insanity.
  • Fat Bastard: In Conan the Liberator, he is described as having a "bloated paunch, obscene and toadlike." As for being a bastard, he is shown bathing in the blood of a child.
  • Evil Redhead: The narration of Conan the Liberator mentions that "the thick, curly hair of his belly, like that of his short beard, was rusty red, fading into grey."
  • Immortality Seeker: He enlists the aid of the Evil Sorcerer Thulandra Thuu in order to help him become immortal.
  • Nostalgia Filter: He is posthumously subjected to this trope in The Phoenix of the Sword when the villains begin feeding tales of Numedides being a noble king that was usurped by a barbarian to the populace, who has forgotten all of Numedides' atrocities. Conan laments it this way:
    They have put a statue of that swine in the temple of Mitra, and people go and wail before it, hailing it as the holy effigy of a saintly monarch who was done to death by a red-handed barbarian. When I led her armies to victory as a mercenary, Aquilonia overlooked the fact that I was a foreigner, but now she can not forgive me. Now in Mitra's temple there come to burn incense to Numedides' memory, men whom his hangmen maimed and blinded, men whose sons died in his dungeons, whose wives and daughters were dragged into his seraglio. The fickle fools!
  • Predecessor Villain: To the conspirators in The Hour of the Dragon, with one of them being his rightful heir Valerius.
  • Posthumous Character: He is already dead by the time of first Howard book was ever written, since Conan was already king. And he almost never appeared alive in any story before that point.
  • Puppet King: In Conan the Liberator by L. Sprague de Camp and Lin Carter, canon under the William Galen Gray chronology, Numedides is in fact the pawn of his evil sorcerer adviser Thulandra Thuu, who is the real power behind Aquilonia's throne.
  • Royal Harem: He has a harem of women.
  • Would Hit a Girl: In Conan the Liberator, he is introduced bathing in the blood of a young girl, and he suggest kidnapping even more girls for this purpose.
  • Would Hurt a Child: In Conan the Liberator, he is introduced bathing in the blood of a twelve-year-old girl.

The Commander of the Black Dragons.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Although he leads the Black Dragons, he is a loyal follower of Conan.


Prospero is a Poitanian who serves as one of Conan's most important subordinates during his reign as King of Aquilonia

  • Number Two: Ascalante refers to him as "King Conan's right-hand man."
  • Tempting Fate: He deems an assassination attempt on Conan with his own city to be impossible. Shorty afterworld, an attempt on Conan's life comes very close to succeeding.
  • Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: In The Phoenix on the Sword, he suggests for Conan to execute Rinaldo for slandering him. Conan reject this suggestion, deeming him to be untouchable.


The high councilor of King Conan.

  • No Badass to His Valet: To his boss, King Conan. In The Phoenix on the Sword, Conan, who is uspet at not being able to travel to Nemedia, complains of Publius' insistence that "that affairs in the city require [Conan's] presence." At the end of Conan the Liberator, he pressures Conan to focus on his kingly responsibilities by reminding him of what happened when the previous King Numedides neglected them, despite Conan being the person who killed Numedides.
  • Non-Action Guy: The narration of The Phoenix on the Sword describes him as "a man of plans rather than action."

A minstrel who became one of the Rebel Four plotting to overthrow Conan because he sees the Cimmerian as a tyrant.
  • Anti-Villain: Unlike his co-conspirators, he does not plot against Conan for personal gain or ambition, but because he wishes to save Aquilonia from someone he perceives as a tyrant who is "[out] to plunder a civilized land."
  • Mad Artist: He joins the coup out of madness about his poetic vision of a ruler. The Scarlet Citadel Also mentionned a rumour that he went in the deadly halls of the sorceror which made him come up with some of the most terrifying poem that even Conan shuddered at, it also likely the reason Rinaldo became so crazy.
  • Nostalgia Filter: By the time of The Phoenix on the Sword, he openly celebrates the late tyrant Numedides, despite his many crimes, because "he occasionally patronized the arts."
  • Unwitting Pawn: To Ascalante.
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: He wants to overthrow Conan because he believes doing so will free the people of Aquilonia.


The Frost-Giant's Daughter


The daughter of Ymir encountered by a young Conan in The Frost-Giant's Daughter.

  • Attempted Rape: By Conan of all people after he managed to defeat her brothers. She summons her father Ymir to save her. In Conan's defense, he was already under severe mental strain which her enchantments and teasing only made worse.
  • Asshole Victim: Narrowly averted. One normally shouldn't think this of attempted rape, but Atali does lead mortal men lost in the snow to be killed by her brothers as sacrifices to Ymir so it's hard to feel TOO sympathetic towards her when Conan kills them and then turns his attention on her.
  • The Bait: She acts as one to lure men lost in battle to her brothers.
  • Big Bad: In The Frost-Giant's Daughter.
  • Cute Monster Girl: While her brothers are monstrous Frost Giants, Atali is beautiful and normal sized despite being technically a Frost Giant herself. This is in line with Norse myths that state female giants were more beautiful than the males.
  • Evil Laugh: Her arrival is accompanied by her silvery laugh, described as "sweeter than the rippling of silvery fountains, and poisonous with cruel mockery."
  • Exposed to the Elements: Not only is she barefoot in the snow, but she is naked except for some gossamer cloth. Justified as she is an Ice Giant.
  • An Ice Person: She is a Frost Giant after all, which explains why she can go out nude in the snow.
  • I Shall Taunt You: Frequently mocks Conan throughout her appearance, all to provoke him into chasing her to her brothers.
  • Kaleidoscope Hair: Her hair is described as neither gold or red, but a glorious compound of both colors.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Atali wears only gossamer cloth to cover her lower bits while her hair covers her chest. Also her beauty is so intense that ends up overwhelming Conan.
  • Non-Action Big Bad: She doesn't personally kill her victims. Instead, she lures them to her brothers, who carry out the killings for her.
  • Oh, Crap!: Atali has this reaction when Conan succeeds in overcoming her brothers.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: She induced it on Conan who normally adheres to rough chivalric code and considers rape beneath him. But the murderous lust caused by her spell, exposure from the cold, and the strain of the recent battle Conan had just barely survived shows how over the edge he was.
  • Or Was It a Dream?: At the end, it's unclear if his encounter with her was real or not. But Conan is holding the piece of fabric that he ripped from Atali earlier, indicating that she was indeed real.
  • The Tease: Atali doesn't seem interested in having sex with her targets and prefers to toy with the dying before they perish in the snow.
  • Villainous Breakdown: She goes from playful temptress to scared little girl after Conan kills the Frost Giants and starts running after her.

The Scarlet Citadel


Pelias is a wizard who has imprisoned by Tsotha-lanti for ten years before being rescued by Conan.

  • And I Must Scream: He refers to his captivity in the group of Tsotha-lanti's plant Yogtha as "a ten-year emptiness."
  • Animate Dead: He temporarily reanimates Shukeli in order to free himself and Conan from Tsotha-lanti's dungeon.
  • Forced to Watch: He was forced to watch Tsotha-lanti feed his followers to Satha.
  • The Hedonist: He openly admits to enjoying "ease and cheer."
  • Horrifying the Horror: He is terrifying to Satha, who is a giant snake.
  • What Year Is It?: He asks this after being freed from Yogtha by Conan.

    King Amalrus 
King Amalrus is the King of Ophir who betrays Conan.

    King Strabonus 
Strabonus is the King of Koth who conspires with King Amalrus of Ophir and Tsotha-lanti to dethrone Conan.
  • Black Knight: He wears black armor during the climactic battle of The Scarlet Citadel.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Towards the end of The Scarlet Citadel, he ends up on the receiving end of one from Conan, who uses a "five-foot blade [to] [crush] Strabonus' casque and skull."
  • Even Evil Has Standards: He is horrified at Tsotha-lanti for offering five hundred virgin sacrifices to set.
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: In The Scarlet Citadel, he "hurriedly [gulps] [a] goblet of wine" as a reaction to watching Tsotha-lanti temporarily blind Amalrus.
  • Oh, Crap!: His reaction when he sees Conan riding into battle during the climax of The Scarlet Citadel.
  • Puppet King: To Tsotha-lanti


A Kothian sorcerer allied with Kings Strabonus and Amalrus. He imprisons Conan, planning to feed him to his snake Satha.

  • Arch-Enemy: To Pelias, a rival wizard. Tsotha-lanti killed his acolytes and used a Botanical Abomination to torment him for ten years. After being freed, Pelias helps Conan thwart Tsotha-lanti's imperialistic ambitions, after which Pelias steals Tsotha-lanti's head.
  • Badass Boast: "Have you not learned by this time that my brain is mightier than any sword."
  • Botanical Abomination: He has one known as Yothga, which he used to torment Pelias.
  • Big Bad: Of The Scarlet Citadel
  • Child by Rape: According to Pelias, Tsotha-lanti was concieved when his mother was violated by a demon.
  • Cranium Chase: After he is decapitated by Conan and his head is captured by Pelias, Tsotha-lanti's body tries to chase his head to reclaim it from Pelias.
  • Cruel Mercy: He chose to condemn his rival Pelais to an And I Must Scream situation instead of killing him outright.
  • Crystal Ball: He keeps one in his citadel.
  • Dragon-in-Chief: To King Strabonus and King Amalrus. Even though they hold higher status, Tsotha-lanti uses his magical arts to keep them in check, as seen when he blinds Amalrus for arguing with him, while Strabonus downs wine.
    Tsotha-lanti: Merely a gesture to convince you who was the real master. Strabonus has learned his lesson—let you learn yours.
  • The Dreaded: According to The Scarlet Citadel he is feared in "northern and western villages"
  • Evil Gloating: His speech to Conan before leaving him to be devoured by Satha.
    Tsotha-lanti: And so, farewell, barbarian. I must ride to Shamar, and the siege. In ten days I shall be in your palace in Tarantia, with my warriors. What word from you shall I say to your women, before I flay their dainty skins for scrolls whereun to chronicle the triumphs of Tsotha-lanti.
  • Evil Laugh: He laughs after taunting Conan about the impending fate of his Royal Harem.
  • Evil Tower of Ominousness: He has his scarlet citadel, which overlooks the city of Khorshemish.
  • Fed to the Beast: He attempts to feed Conan to his snake Satha, as his once did to Pelias' followers.
  • Flaying Alive: He gloats to Conan about his intentions to do this to Conan's women.
  • Human-Demon Hybrid: According to Pelias, he is the offspring of a demon and a dancing girl.
  • I Want Them Alive!: In the opening battle of The Scarlet Citadel, he insists of capturing Conan alive.
  • Lean and Mean: The text of The Scarlet Citadel describes him as "lean vulture."
  • Pulling Themselves Together: At the end of The Scarlet Citadel he boasts that he has the ability to do this, and after Conan decapitates him, his body tries to retrieve his severed head, only for it to be snatched by Pelias.
    Tsotha-lanti: You cannot conquer me—if you hack me to pieces, the bits of flesh and bone will reunite and haunt you to your doom!
  • Religion of Evil: He prays to Set in the hopes of gaining victory in battle, even promising him sacrifices if his prayers are answer.
  • Sorcerous Overlord: He is a wizard, and also the one truly calling the shots around Koth despite Strabonus nominally being charge.
  • Straight Edge Evil: He doesn't drink and his only interest in women is to trade them to demons for power. According to Pelias it's because Tsotha-lanti is a half-demon and so has little interest in earthly pleasures unlike Pelias and other sorcerers.
  • Villain Team-Up: With Thoth-Amon in the Dark Horse Comics.
  • Virgin Sacrifice: He offers Set "five hundred virgins of Shamar" if he helps them win a battle against Conan.
  • Would Hit a Girl: The narrative of The Scarlet Citadel mentions that he "[traded] screaming girl slaves for unholy secrets." He also plans to flay Conan's women.

The Tower of the Elephant

A Nemedian thief who teams up with Conan to steal the Heart of the Elephant.

Debut: "The Tower of the Elephant", Robert E. Howard.

A green-skinned humanoid with the head of an elephant. Arriving from the planet Yag (located on the "outer fringe of this universe"), he and his fellows set up a colony on Earth long before humanity appeared. In fact, 'Kosha is so long-lived he's witnessed humanity's rise, the sinking of Atlantis and Lemuria, and lived onto the Hyperborean Age, where he was worshiped in Khitai. Sadly, the alien became the last of his kind on Earth, and eventually became a prisoner of an evil wizard.

  • And I Must Scream: By the time Conan finds him, Yag-Kosha is blind, his limbs broken and atrophied and he is chained in a chair, as recipient of Cold-Blooded Torture at Yara's hands.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Was the victim of this, leaving him crippled and blinded.
  • Did We Just Have Tea with Cthulhu?: Yag-Kosha was nice enough to let the some worship him, as well as train a wizard in the arts of good. And have a nice chat with Conan.
  • Eldritch Abomination: An unusually sympathetic example. He comes from beyond the stars and can empower humanity with magic, but Yara decided to use him as a source for dark magic by torturing him and keeping him in his tower. Conan goes from frightful to ashamed of the human race when he sees that the monstrous being is sobbing.
  • Everyone Has Standards: While not evil, Conan at this point in life is highly amoral but looking at Yag-kosha's horrific suffering made Conan ashamed of being human and so he tells Yag that he's just walking by and wiill not harm Yag. That leads to Yag telling Conan his story and his request.
  • The Exile: Was cast out of Yag for being part of a revolt.
  • Expy: Of Ganesha. His debut story seems to hint that Yag-Kosha was the inspiration of for Ganesha.
  • Fantasy Aliens: Arrived from a distant planet to Conan's world which is a major Sword and Sorcery Trope Maker.
  • Humanoid Abomination: His body is the one of a giant humanoid but he has the head of an elephant.
  • Last of His Kind: Well, on Earth. The rest of his peers died of extreme old age.
  • Long-Lived: While not immortal, the aliens of Yag's lifespan is millions of years.
  • Made a Slave: By his own student Yara.
  • Mercy Kill: He begs Conan to release him from his torment, which he mournfully obliges and requests this from Conan, which the Cimmerian is willing to grant.
  • My Death Is Just the Beginning: Reassures Conan that the death of a Yag is different from the death of a human as he asks Conan to cut out his heart.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: After Conan cuts out his heart at his request, Conan presents it to Yara which traps the evil sorcerer to be pursued by the spirit of Yag-kosha.
  • Sufficiently Advanced Aliens: He is actually alien from an distant planet.
  • Time Abyss: Yag and his people are older than humanity itself.
  • White Magic: Yag-kosha originally taught Yara this, but Yara wasn't satisfied with only being taught this, and eventually turned Yag-kosha's power against him and enslaved him.
  • Winged Humanoid: Once, allowing the exiled Yag to traveled faster than light through space. But upon reaching Earth, they lost their wings.


Yara is a powerful but reclusive wizard who resides in the City of Thieves, in a nigh-impregnable tower where he keeps his former teacher, the being Yag-Kosha, as his captive and slave. He initially only appeared in The Tower of the Elephant, but later adaptions expanded his role considerably.

  • Arc Villain: Of the first (and only) season of the live-action Conan series.
  • Animal Motifs: Both played straight and subverted: while he does posses the "Heart of the Elephant" jewel, and resides in the eponymous tower, both the jewel and the tower are so named for Yag-Kosha, not Yara. He is however closely associated with spiders, from turning his enemies into spiders, having a boar-sized one serve as his guard dog.
  • Ascended Extra: Was a relatively minor character in the Howard stories, but was given much more screen time in the live-action series.
  • Big Bad: Of The Tower of the Elephant.
  • Deceptive Disciple: First came to Yag-Kosha claiming to seeking his guidance, only to turn on him and make him his prisoner once he had learned his secrets.
  • The Dreaded: In Zamora, at least. Even the king is afraid of him.
  • Evil Is Petty: Killed a prince just for speaking to him informally.
  • Evil Sorcerer: The first of many Conan meets, chronologically speaking.
  • Forced Transformation: If able to transform other people into animals.
  • Giant Spider: Has one as his guard-dog.
  • Incredible Shrinking Man: He is shrunk down once Conan uses the Heart of the Elephant against him.
  • Karmic Death: He thought of himself as a big man, when in reality he was only powerful because of the power he stole from Yag-Kosha, whom he had made his captive. In the end, he is stripped of his power and shrunk down to a size so small as to be undetectable, before finally being absorbed into the "Heart of the Elephant", to remain a prisoner forever, being hounded by his former captive.
  • Starter Villain: He is the main antagonist of the earliest Conan story in the chronology established by P. Schuyler Miller and John D. Clark' A Probable Outline of Conan's Career.
  • White Magic: The power he was initially taught by Yag-Kosha. Eventually turned it against him and took up Black Magic.

Queen of the Black Coast


A fearsome, but beautiful pirate queen who became Conan's lover, often regarded as his first and greatest love.

    The Winged One 

A winged ape-like creature who is the last surviving member of an ancient race.

  • Big Bad: Of The Queen of the Black Coast.
  • Last of His Kind: It is the last remaining member of a once great race which "sank lower than man's maddest nightmares reach." After Conan kills it, the race becomes extinct.
  • No Name Given: Rather than giving the creature an actual name, the story and characters refer to it in terms such as winged ape, devil-ape, bat-thing, flying devil, winged horror, and winged one.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: The creature has red eyes.
  • Winged Humanoid: The creature has wings, and it belongs to a race that was "Cast in the mold of humanity."

Black Colossus


Mitra is the universal god of the Hyborians

  • Greater-Scope Paragon: For the franchise as a whole. He the most important benevolent deity of the setting, but rarely shows up in person. His votaries often give Conan aid against the villains on multiple occasions, and Set, the Greater-Scope Villain of the franchise refers to Mitra as the "Mightiest of my rivals."
  • Light Is Good: He is a benevolent deity, and in Conan the Rebel, he is referred to by Set as "Mitra of the Sun."

    Thugra Khotan

Thugra Khotan was a Stygian wizard who reigned over Kuthchemes. The city was sacked by “gray-eyed, tawny-haired barbarians in wolfskins and scale-mail”. To escape the destruction, Khotan swallowed “a strange terrible poison”, after which he was locked into a tomb by his priests, which the barbarians could not enter. The city was destroyed, and the tomb lost to the desert in the intervening millennia. He is awakened three thousand years later by the thief Shevatas. In the time that he slept, the barbarians traveled north, to found the country of Koth. Hiding his face, and taking up the name Natohk, he sets out to unleash his wrath upon the barbarians' descendants.

  • Animal Motif: Black Scorpions. Heavily emphasized in the Dark Horse adaptation, where his shadow form has pinchers and a scorpion tail.
  • Big Bad: Of Black Colossus.
  • Cool Mask: He is even called "the Veiled One".
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Is what (ultimately) leads to his downfall, as he is more focused on pursuing Yasmela than on his plans for conquest.
    • This is further emphasized in the Dark Horse comic adaptation, where, during a critical moment in the battle, his demon servant points out that with Conan and the Khorajan army occupied, Natohk can simply take the remainder of his horde around the plateau and through the pass, with Khoraja and the lands of Koth ripe for the taking. He promptly ignores this advice, to fatal results.
  • Evil Sorcerer: He is a sorcerer who plans to "sweep into the lands of [his] ancient enemies," kill their kings, and enslave their women and children.
  • Fog of Doom: One of his many powers, assisting him in his conquest of the desert tribes. In his battle with Conan's army, he uses it to block line-of-sight as his army approaches.
  • Humanoid Abomination: He appears in Yasmela's dreams as a nightmarish shadow creature resembling a scorpion/human hybrid. To say nothing of why he wears a veil: while the poison he drank was able to slow down his body's decay, it wasn't able to stop it completely.
  • Kill It with Fire: Summons a wall of fire during the battle, using it on the rashly charging knights.
  • Magic Wand: A classic "also turns into a snake" version.
  • Sdrawkcab Name: Did it come as a surprise to anyone that Natohk is actually Thugra Khotan?
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Sealed away in his tomb for three thousand years before the their Shevatas opens it.
  • Shrouded in Myth: Thugra Khotan's identity has been mostly lost to the ages. Conan only manages to put two-and-two together after being shown an engraving of him on a coin from three thousand years ago, which Yasmela recognizes as the man from her nightmares.
  • Skull Cups: He tells Yasmela that he plans with make these out of the skulls of enemy kings.
  • Sins of Our Fathers: Wants to conquer and destroy the people of Koth as revenge for what their ancestors did.
  • Sorcerous Overlord: He he was once one in Kuthchemes.
  • Stalker with a Crush: A particularly dark and twisted version towards Yasmela.
  • Was Once a Man: See Humanoid Abomination.
  • Your Soul Is Mine!: He intends to keep Yasmela as his unwilling bride, but after using up most of his magic he tries to suck out her soul to restore his powers. It's best not to contemplate whether he still intended to keep her for his bride after he was done.


The princess of Khoraja who is currently serving as regent while her brother is a prisoner of war to his enemies.

  • Damsel in Distress: Thugra Khotan has her on his sights and Conan has to rescue her towards the climax.
  • King Incognito: How she meets Conan in the dark of night. She is instructed by Mitra to do
  • Ms. Fanservice: Mostly in the comic adaptations, that milk of all it's worth by portraying her sleeping in the nude when she receives Khotan's nightmares. Can be considered a deconstruction of this trope since her sexy looks end up attracting the wrong sort of attention - namely, Big Bad's lust - to her personally. The short story also ends with her having sex with Conan.
  • Rescue Sex: Yasmela throws herself to Conan's arms after being rescued at the end.
  • Silk Hiding Steel: Yasmela takes no shit from her courtiers. When one states it's insulting to be asked to serve under Conan's command:
    Yasmela: Count Thespides, you have my glove under your baldric. Please give it to me, then go.
    Thespides: Go? Go where?
    Yasmela: To Koth or to Hades! If you will not serve me as I wish, you shall not serve me at all.

Iron Shadows in the Moon

Princess of Ophir, she was sold to a shemite chieftain by her own father for refusing to marry a prince of Koth. The shemite in turn sold her to Shah Amurath to buy his good will. While Amurath was busy crushing the kozaki tribesmen, she slipped away from the palace and tried to escape only for her master to pursue and get her.
  • Abusive Parents: Her father King Kennak, appropriately enough. Conan expresses disgust at him for selling his own child In the Dark Horse comics, even Amurath of all people calls her father "a immoral and godless man". It was revealed he sold her under the influence of a sorcerer.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The Road of Kings comics serves as a sequel to Iron Shadows, showing what happened next to Olivia and her father and giving closure to her story.
  • Arranged Marriage: To a Kothian prince, whom she refused to marry and was sold to slavery.
  • Beautiful Slave Girl: She is forced to serve as a concubine to Shah Amurath.
  • Broken Bird: Even after her rapist is killed, she is still tormented by the memories of his abuses. She can't even enjoy watching Conan bathe without remembering what she went through.
  • Fallen Princess: You can't fall much further than being a Sex Slave to a cruel tyrant.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: Olivia appears to be a generic damsel in distress, but when Conan is captured by pirates she manages to sneak into their camp and rescue him.
  • Pirate Girl: At the conclusion of Iron Shadows, Olivia becomes a pirate queen. However, the Dark Horse limited Road of Kings series shows that wasn't a long career since their ship and crew were destroyed by Zingaran sailors.
  • Rape as Drama: Olivia suffered it at Amurath's hands and he nearly forces her to through with it again at the start of the book. Even after his death, she is still recovering from it.
  • Sex Slave: To Shah Amurath.

    Shah Amurath

Amurath is the Turanian ruler of Akif. He is responsible for massacring a kozaki band that Conan belong to. While pursuing his fugitive slave girl Olivia, Amurath is killed at the start of Iron Shadows in the Moon by Conan himself in revenge for his comrades' deaths.

  • Adaptation Expansion: Amurath dies in the opening of Iron Shadows in the Moon. He still dies the same way on the Dark Horse comics, the difference is that what he was previously doing before (destroying the kozakis and dealing with Olivia) is detailed.
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: A turanian Shah (a real-life title given to lords, princes and emperors in Persia/Iran) and a complete, sadistic bastard.
  • Armor Is Useless: The narration takes note that Amurath is wearing full-mail in his duel against Conan, who is just a loincloth away from Full-Frontal Assault. This doesn't provide Amurath with any advantage.
  • Dirty Coward: Despite having slaughtered the Kozak Amurath begs for mercy when faced with Conan. Unsurprisingly Conan isn't impressed.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: In the Dark Horse comics at least; Amurath is a brutal nobleman and a vicious rapist, but even he is disgusted at the King of Ophir for selling out his own daughter as slave. It should be noted that this doesn't necessarily stops him from hurting said daughter or treating her any better.
  • Offstage Villainy: He crushed Conan's kozaki band to the point Conan had to live on shrews waiting for a moment of revenge.
  • The Sociopath: If this is any indication, he delights causing pain and degrading his victims:
    "Let me go!" begged the girl, tears of despair staining her face. "Have I not suffered enough? Is there any humiliation, pain or degradation you have not heaped on me? How long must my torment last?"
    "As long as I find pleasure in your whimperings, your pleas, tears and writhings," he answered with a smile that would have seemed gentle to a stranger. "You are strangely virile, Olivia. I wonder if I shall ever weary of you, as I have always wearied of women before. You are ever fresh and unsullied, in spite of me. Each new day with you brings a new delight.
  • Villains Want Mercy: The moment Conan mortally wounds him, Amurath begs for quarter. Conan has none to give.

Xuthal of the Dusk

Introduced in Xuthal of the Dusk, she is a Brythunian slave girl accompanying Conan when they become lost in the desert. A rather two-dimensional character in the books, her character is expanded in the Dark Horse version: she was the wife of a prince whose scholarly discoveries about a treasure hoard attracted the attention of Thoth-Amon, who ordered his capture to find out where is it. Natala and her sister Diana were sold as slaves, and ended up being separated from each other. After freeing Diana, she promises to lead Conan to the treasure if he also frees her sister.
  • Adaptation Expansion: In Xuthal Of The Dusk, very little is known about Natala, on how she was enslaved and got freed by Conan. Most of the tropes listed in her folder refer mostly to her Dark Horse incarnation.
  • Betty and Veronica: A helpless damsel whom Conan is protecting from danger in contrast to Thalis' Veronica.
  • Deadpan Snarker: She has a sarcastic wit in the Dark Horse comics.
  • Distressed Damsel: Its bad enough that Natala nearly gets devoured by an Eldritch Abomination in the book she is introduced. But in the comics, she gets captured by Thoth-Amon and forced to reveal the hoard her husband was looking for.
  • Fallen Princess: A highborn lady that ended up enslaved. Also an literal example since she could qualify as a princess herself. Lampshaded in Conan the Avenger issue #16:
    Natala: You know I used to live in a castle. A castle with servants.
    Conan: Aye, you have said so. Many times.
    Natala: My biggest concern was whether my toenail colors matched my fingernails.
    Conan: Ah, but you feel so much alive, don't you?
    Natala: You know what is funny? That was what my husband said before we were attacked by pirates.
    Conan: I don't see what is so funny about that.
    Natala: Makes two of us.
  • Friends with Benefits: During their travels, they'd occasionally have sex with each other. Still, their relationship isn't exactly what one would call romantic and they are bickering partners most of the time.
  • I Choose to Stay: She decides to join Janissa's Amazon Brigade and their noble cause serving as their healer.
  • Made a Slave: She was sold to slavery by Amon's minions. Unlike her sister Diana, who was forced into a harem, Natala only did menial work.
  • The Medic: She has shown some talent on healing.
  • Mercy Kill: When Natala and Conan are lost in the desert, he prepares to slay her to spare her a long and painful death by heat and thirst. Its only the sight of a distant city that prevents him from putting the girl out of her misery. Thalis also advises Conan to kill her off before the men in Xuthal can turn her into a Sex Slave.
  • Plucky Girl: The backbone in Natala is huge, she is not afraid to stand up to Thoth-Amon of all people. When he forces her to reveal where the treasure hoard is, its revealed that it was a trap and she lead him to a horde of demons.
  • Related in the Adaptation: In the Conan the Avenger comic, Natala is sister to Diana, a character from The Snout in the Dark, an originally untitled story started by Howard that he never finished and was completed and named by other authors.


Introduced in Xuthal of the Dusk, Thalis is the pale-skinned Stygian resident of Xuthal, a lost city in a remote desert whose inhabitants live in almost complete state of dreaming.

  • Anti-Villain: While she tries to get an innocent young woman killed to claim her partner for herself, its very hard to not sympathize with Thalis when considering her backstory and current situation.
  • Betty and Veronica: A beautiful temptress who offers to make Conan king of Xuthal in contrast to Natala's Betty.
  • Diamonds in the Buff: She is clad in nothing more than a narrow girdle crusted with jewels.
  • Eaten Alive: Thalis gets devoured by Thog while whipping Natala.
  • Femme Fatale: She falls for Conan and wastes no time trying to seduce him.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Becomes murderously jealous of Natala due to Conan's attention for her. Its also said she instilled jealousy in Xuthal women for being so popular with the males.
  • Mr. Exposition: She is used as a device to explain Xuthal's backstory and how their inhabitants live, as well as their god Thog.
  • Ms. Fanservice: See Diamonds in the Buff. Thalis too is described as shaped like a goddess among other things.
  • Murder the Hypotenuse: At first, she tries telling Conan to kill Natala to spare her from becoming a Sex Slave to Xuthal's male residents, and then Thalis tries to sacrifice Natala herself to Thog just to have Conan for herself.
  • Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: Her skin is white as alabaster, possibly as result of being locked away from the sun. And instead of freaked out by her appearance, Conan and Natala are completely blown away by her beauty.
  • Sex Slave: Lived as one inside the walls of Xuthal.


An Eldritch Abomination stalking the city of Xuthal.

  • Big Bad: Of The Slithering Shadow.
  • The Dreaded: Thog is one of the few things that can get the residents of Xuthal out of their dreams and run for their lives. Conan also has an instinctive fear of him and if it wasn't from the rage overriding him as Thog was about to eat Natala Conan would have avoided fighting him.
  • Hungry Menace: He preys on the residents of Xuthal, causing the population of Xuthal to reduce so drastically over the generations, Thalis predicts that the city's population will vanish entirely in a few generations, at which point "Thog must either fare forth into the world for new prey, or retire to the underworld whence he came so long ago."
  • Mars Needs Women: Thalis mentions that some people "would be bound and flung back through the arched doorways to satisfy Thog's lust and hunger." Thalis later tells Natala that "you will be the bride of him who dwells in darkness" when preparing to give her to Thog.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Manhandles Conan in a way the barbarian can barely understand. If it wasn't from the golden wine that healed him Conan would have likely died from his wounds or the poison that dripped all over his lacerated back.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: The reader doesn't actually see what Thog does to Thalis.
  • Time Abyss: According to Thalis "He has always dwelt in Xuthal. Whether he came here with the ancient founders, or was here when they built the city, none knows."

The Pool of the Black One

A former Zingaran noblewoman who was kidnapped by Zaporavo.
  • Cower Power: When her captor throws her down, "she groveled, crying with pain and terror."
  • Happiness in Slavery: The narration mentions "she found pleasure in her existence" as Zaporavo's plaything
  • Made a Slave: By Zaporavo.
  • Ms. Fanservice: She removes all of her clothing and swims to the island the crew of the Wastrel are visiting, and she spends the remainder of the story "deck naked as Eve."
  • Sex Slave: She was forced to become Zaporavo's plaything.

The captain of the Wastrel before Conan took over.
  • Asshole Victim: While he was betrayed and killed by his ambitious subordinate Conan so the latter could make himself the captain of the Watrel, he was a pirate who kidnapped Sancha and forced her to be his Sex Slave.
  • Death by Materialism: When his crew are on an island, he explores the island behind his crew's back to search for "strange monsters guard crypts filled with hieroglyph-careen gold" that he does not wish his crew to find out about. This gives Conan the opportunity to murder Zaporavo without his crew noticing, allowing Conan to make himself the new power.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: For the first portion of the story, he is the main target of Conan, who seeks to supplant him as the captain of the Wastrel. Once Zaporavo is dealt with, Conan spends the rest of the story dealing with the island's natives and the supernatural pool they attempt to sacrifice the Wastrel's crew to.
  • Jerkass: He was very unpleasant to Conan when the latter came aboard his ship.
  • Master Swordsman: The narration mentions that "Zaporavo was the veteran of a thousand fights by sea and by land. There was no man in the world more deeply and thoroughly versed than he in the lore of swordcraft."
  • Pirate: He is the Captain of a pirate ship.
  • Rape, Pillage, and Burn: Prior to the events of the story, he "tore Sancha screaming from the flaming caravel his wolves had plundered" and forced her to become his Sex Slave.
  • Smug Snake: The narration explains that he does not think any of his subordinates could jeopardize his position of power, and describes him as having "vague grandiose dreams."
    The Pool of the Black One: Zaporavo made the mistake so many autocrats make; alone in somber grandeur on the poop, he underestimated the man below him. He had his opportunity to kill Conan, and he let it pass, engrossed in his own gloomy ruminations. He did not find it easy to think any of the dogs beneath his feet constituted a menace to him. He had stood in the high places so long, and had ground so many foes underfoot, that he unconsciously assumed himself to be above the machinations of inferior rivals.
  • Underestimating Badassery: He underestimates the threat Conan poses to him until it is too late.
  • Would Hit a Girl: He forces Sancha to become his Sex Slave, and the narration notes that Sancha's enslavement to Zaporavo is an existence that would have killed another woman. He also subjects Sancha to whippings.

Rogues in the House


A nobleman who recruits Conan to assassinate his rival Nabonidus.

  • The Dandy: He is described in the narration as having "scented black curls and foppish apparel."
  • Enemy Mine: He teams up with his enemy Nabodinus after they are imprisoned by Thak.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Even though he is selling state secrets abroad, he is disgusted with Nabodinus for the suffering he has caused the people of their kingdom, declaring that "You are a greater thief than I am."
  • Karma Houdini: He never gets any comeuppance for selling secrets abroad.
  • The Mole: As mentioned by Nabonidus, "he sold [state secrets] to rival powers"
  • Oh, Crap!: "He broke into a profuse sweat," upon being delivered a severed ear by Nabonidus.

Nabonidus, the Red Priest, is a corrupt priest who has a feud with he nobleman Murilo.
  • Admiring the Abomination: He expressing pride upon seeing Thak display enough intelligence to use a trap Nabonidus prepared for his own enemies.
  • Angry Guard Dog: He keeps a guard dog in his gardens, but it gets killed by Thak.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: After having Conan and Murilo at his mercy, he take the time to gloat instead of killing them immediately, giving Conan the opportunity to kill him first.
  • Big Fancy House: He lives in a house that is described by visitors as having "rich furnishings".
  • Enemy Mine: He forms a temporary alliance with Conan and Nabonidus to defeat Thak, who had trapped them all inside Nabonidus' own house.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: He created "and arrangement of [tubes and] mirrors" that allows him to one of the chambers of his house from below it. He also has several death traps around his house.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Although he is a corrupt individual who will use Loophole Abuse to get around an oath he swore "by thr soul of Mitra" if given the opportunity to do so, he will not break the oath outright.
  • Finger in the Mail: He sends a severed ear to Murilo.
  • Exact Words: He gives his word not to tell the king anything that would cost Murilo his life, but he never promised not to kill Murilo himself.


Thak is an ape-like being who was raised by Nabonidus to be his servant. Eventually, Thak rebelled against his master.

  • Big Bad: Of Rogues in the House.
  • Bodyguard Betrayal: He served as a bodyguard for Nabonidus before eventually turning against the Red Priest.
  • The Dog Bites Back: He betrays and imprisons Nabonidus, the man who enslaved him for most of his life.
  • Frazetta Man: He is an ape-like being who has developed intelligence. Nabonidus speculates that his race will eventually evolve into people.
  • Genius Bruiser: He possesses both a high degree of intelligence, and a formidable opponent for Conan in a straight-up fight.
  • It Can Think: He was able to betray and imprison his master Nabondus in a move Nabonidus said "must have been the result of long and careful planning." He also turns prove capable of utilizing one the death traps Nabonidus set in his house, by remembering and imitating what Nabonidus had done.
  • Killer Gorilla: He is at an immediate evolutionary stage between ape and human, and he is said by Nabonidus to "have the strangth of a true gorilla"
  • Made a Slave: When he was a cub, he was taken by Nadonidus, who kept him as a servant for the majority of his life.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: He wears Nabonidus' red robs over his black body, giving off this appearance.
  • Worthy Opponent: Conan expresses his respect for Thak after killing him.
    Conan: I have slain a man tonight, not a beast. I will count him among the chiefs whose souls I've sent into the dark, and my women will sing of him.
  • Unperson: After his death, Nabonidus plans to inflict this fate of him by disposing of his body with acid, as well as killing Conan and Murilo (who the only surviving people besides Nabonidus himself aware of Thak's existance). Before he can go this with this, Nabonidus is slain by Conan, who plans to defy this trope, vowing that "my [Conan's] women will sing of him".

The Devil in Iron

    Jehungir Agha

The young and cruel Turanian governor of the Khawarizm that concocts a plan to lure and slay Conan.

  • Antagonistic Governor: He is charged by the Emperor to guard the coastal border of the Vilayet sea and clashes with Conan in the book.
  • Kick the Dog: In case you were unsure with him being evil since he is in service of Yezdigerd, he order his slave girl Octavia to seduce Conan as part of his plan, and when she refuses, he orders his Shemite henchmen Gilzen to rape her. In his introductory chapter no less...

    Khosatral Khel

A demonic demigod awakened by the removal of a sacred dagger that was supposed to keep him imprisoned.

  • Achilles' Heel: He can shrug off anything you throw at him, unless it is from the magical knife he was buried with. He knows it too: before he knew Conan had the knife, he went blindly chasing after him through the jungle, attacking like a crazed berserker, but upon seeing the knife, he quickly pulls away in fear, giving Conan the chance he needs to strike.
  • Big Bad: In The Devil in Iron.
  • Depending on the Artist: One of the more notable cases, manly because nobody can seem to determine exactly what Khosatral is meant to look like compared to other characters. While he is described as having black hair, wide limbs and wearing a loincloth (sort of like Conan, ironically), he is also described as having an otherness about him which terrifies those who meet him.
    • In the Marvel Comics, he was drawn as a twelve-foot giant with white eyes and silver skin.
    • In a separate comic, also by Marvel, he was depicted as even larger, nearly twenty feet tall, with stone gray skin, black eyed and bald.
    • In the Dark Horse publications, he has red skin and glowing blue eyes.
  • The Dreaded: Most notably, he is one of the few antagonists that made Conan filled with the horror and dread.
  • Implacable Man: He shrugs off nearly everything Conan throws at him.
  • Humanoid Abomination: Khel looks like a human in "shape and aspect", but his behavior and the fact he can shrug off any damage shows he isn't. His description — which describes his human form as so contrary to humanity and nature that it is, by its very existence, blasphemy — is currently featured in this trope's quote page.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Not to the extent of, say, Thoth Amon, but he does have a recurring snake theme. There are snakes carved on the walls of his palace, and Conan fights a giant snake guarding his special knife.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: More like Sleeping Evil in a Table with a knife over his chest trapping him.
  • This Was His True Form: After being felled by Conan, his humanoid form reverts back to the ghastly shape he was originally summoned to. We don't see it in detail in the books, but Conan is so terrified he flees for his life upon seeing it. They do show it in the comics and in the Dark Horse publication, he resembles a black skeleton with multiple arms and covered in tar.

    King Yezdigerd 

The People of the Black Circle

    Devi Yasmina 

The ruler of Vendhya following the death of her brother Bhunda Chand.

  • Defiant Captive:
    • When she is Conan's hostage, she threatens to have him killed.
    • After the Master of Yimsha captures her, she refuses to submit to his advances.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: She is betrayed by her maid Gitara.
  • Made a Slave: This is the fate both King Yezdigerd of the Master of Yimsha have in store for her. Both of them fail.
  • Mercy Kill: She delivers one to her brother in order to prevent the Black Seers of Yimssha from stealing his soul.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: Inverted. After she replaces her Devi's robes with those of a hill-girl, Conan remarks to her that "In those smoky, mystic robes you were aloof and cold and far off as a star! Now you are a woman of warm flesh and blood! You went behind that rock as the Devi of Vendhya; you come out as a hill-girl—though a thousand times more beautiful than any wench of the Zhaibar! You were a goddess—now you are real!."
  • Who Dares?: She threatens Conan in this manner for kidnapping her.
    Devi Yasmina: You dare—you dare! Your life shall pay for this! Where are you taking me
  • You Killed My Father: She seeks the deaths of the Black Seers of Yimsha for killing her brother.


A former acolyte of the Black Seers of Yimsha to betrays his masters at the urging of his lover Gitara.

  • Badass Boast: Towards the beginning of The People of the Black Circle, he boasts, not about himself, but about his masters, the Black Seers of Yimsha.
    Khemsa: And I [serve] the Black Seers of Yimsha [...]; and my masters are greater than yours, for they have accomplished by their arts what Yezdigerd could not with a hundred thousand swords.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: He abides by Sacred Hospitality, as seen when he refuses to kill Kerim Shah in his sleep on the ground that Khemsa has "eaten his salt."
  • Evil Sorcerer: He is a wizard who participates in regicide to further the goals of the Black Seers of Yimsha, and after he betrays him, commits several additional murders and seeks to sell Yasmina to Yezdigerd to further his own ambitions.
  • One-Man Army: Thanks to his hypnotism and quck movements he can go through jail or out of a Wazuli camp without a scratch.
  • Power of Love: He is able to face four Black Seers in a magic duel with a mix of of fight or flight despair and his love for Gitara anchoring him. Unfortunately his masters target Gitara instead and force her off a cliff when they realize this.
  • The Starscream: He betrays his masters, the Black Seers of Yimsha, with the intention of ruling the world with his lover Gitara.
  • Take Over the World: This is his stated goal after Gitara convinces him to betray his masters. He plans to rule it alongside Gitara.
    Khemsa: We shall be rulers of the world—of the world—
  • Unholy Matrimony: With his lover Gitara. Two two of them plan to rule an empire as king and queen.

    The Master of Yimsha 

An Evil Sorcerer who leads a group of wizards known as the Black Seers of Yimsha.

  • Big Bad: Of The People of the Black Circle
  • Evil Sorcerer: He is a wizard who is complicit in the murder of a King and the aspirations of the Evil Overlord Yezdigerd.
  • Hidden Agenda Villain: He doesn't elaborate on why he was willing to cooperate with Yezdigerd.
  • I Have You Now, My Pretty: After capturing Devi Yasmina, he comments on her beauty before announcing his intention to make her his slave.
  • If I Can't Have You…: After the tide of the conflict turns against him, He tries to kill Yasmina rather than allow her to be freed.
  • Insufferable Genius: Mocks everyone for having puny mortal intellect who couldn't understand his motives even if he explained it to them.
  • The Master: He calls himself the Master of Yimsha.
  • Mind Rape: He inflicts this on Devi Yasmina when she refuses to submit to him.
  • Scaled Up: He has the ability to turn into a snake.

A Witch Shall Be Born

    Constantius the Falcon

A cruel and sadistic Kothic voivode, Constantinus leads a band of Shemitish mercenaries in the service of Salome, while also serving as her lover and partner in debauchery. When Taramis is overthrown, he arrests Conan and has him dragged into the desert and crucified.

    Olgerd Vladislav 
Introduced in A Witch Shall Be Born as a bandit leader who rescued Conan from the cross Constantius placed him on, and made him his right-hand man. Several months later, Conan usurps control of the Zuagirs from Olgerd, sending him to exile. He returns in The Flame Knife, having joined the Hidden Ones, antagonizing his former subordinate Conan.
  • Animal Motif: In The Flame Knife, he is referred to as The Tiger by the Hidden Ones.
  • Attack on the Heart: In The Flame Knife, he is fatally stabbed in the heart by Conan.
  • Authority in Name Only: By the time Conan ousted him from power in A Witch Shall be Born, his authority as Zuagir chief had already become diminished, as Conan was recruiting followers who shared Conan's desire to liberate Khauran from Constantius the Falcon.
    Olgerd Vladislav: I'll have you torn between four palm-trees.
    Conan: Call the men and bid them do it! See if they obey you!
    Olgerd Vladislav: You scum of the western hills, have you dared seek to undermine my power?
    Conan: I didn't have to. You lied when you said I had nothing to do with bringing in the new recruits. I had everything to do with it. They took your orders, but they fought for me. There is not room for two chiefs of the Zuagirs. They know I am the stronger man. I understand them better than you, and they, me; because I am a barbarian too
  • Back for the Dead: He returns in The Flame Knife, where he is killed by Conan.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: In A Witch Shall Be Born, he boasts about taking over Shem, only for Conan to take control of Olgerd's band from under his nose.
  • Breakout Villain: His only appearance in the Howard stories was as a relatively minor character in A Witch Shall be Born. He later returns as one of the main antagonists in the pastiche story the Flame Knife. He also appears in the original Marvel story The Sleeper Beneath the Sands before marvel obtained the rights to adapt The Flame Knife, and after the gained the rights to do so, Marvel created another story Mirror of the Manticore, which features Olgerd as the main character and bridges the gap between The Sleeper Beneath the Sands and The Flame Knife.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: He ends up on the receiving end from Conan after trying to kill him for undermining his authority.
  • Demanding Their Head: In The Flame Knife, he offers "Ten thousand pieces of gold for the Cimmerian's [Conan's] head."
  • Dragon Ascendant: He quickly assumes command of Virata's followers following the latter's death at the hands of Conan. However, Downplayed in the sense that Olgerd claims that he was already in charge of Yanaidar.
  • Dragon-in-Chief: To the Magus in The Flame Knife. Although the Magus is the leader of the Hidden Ones, he waits for Olgerd's opinion on matters such as recruiting new members. After the Magus' death, Olgerd himself boasts that "Olgerd Vladislav is the real ruler of Yanaidar, as he always has been."
  • Man of Wealth and Taste: In A Witch Shall be Born, he is wearing opulent clothing during a meeting with Conan.
    A Witch Shall be Born: His [Olgerd Vladislav's] khalat was of white silk, with pearls sewn on the bosom. Girdled at the waist with a Bakhauriot belt, its skirts were drawn back to reveal his wide silken breeches, tucked into short boots of soft green leather, adorned with gold thread. On his head was a green silk turban, wound about a spired helmet chased with gold.
  • Near-Villain Victory: In The Flame Knife, Olgerd has Conan and his men cornered and outnumbered, and he is about to break into Conan's position the help of a siege tower, just before Conan is saved by reinforcements of Kushafis and kozaki.
  • Shoot the Dangerous Minion: He tries to kill Conan after being told that his new recruits are more loyal to Conan than Olgerd himself. It fails.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: In A Witch Shall be Born, Olgerd is a smug Big Bad Wannabe who gets Out-Gambitted by Conan, not even realizing Conan is plotting against him until it is too late, and once he does, Conan easily defeats and exiles him. In The Flame Knife, Olgerd returns as a powerful cult member who nearly succeeds in exacting his revenge on Conan.
  • You Fool!: In A Witch Shall be Born, he says this to Conan after Conan tells him that he was recruiting followers by "[telling] them that I'd use this horde of desert wolves to help them destroy Constantius and give Khauran back into the hands of its citizens."


Taramis's twin sister who was abandoned to die in the desert upon her birth because of her cursed birthmark. She was found by a Khitai sorcerer who raised her and taught her magic. She plots to replace her sister and rule as Queen of Khauran in her place.

  • Big Bad: In A Witch Shall Be Born.
  • Birthmark of Destiny: Salome was born with magical powers due to an ancient curse that afflicts Khauran's royal bloodline with every 100 years, a young girl being born with a crescent birthmark as a sign that she will bring despair and evil.
  • Cain and Abel: The Cain to Taramis's Abel.
  • The Caligula: Salome governs (and is ruled) by her own whims and desires. Being a psychopathic sorceress makes it a deadly combination.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: She delights in tormenting Taramis in any way she can.
  • Evil Twin: To Taramis.
  • Evil Sorcerer: An evil witch.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: Upon replacing her sister, Salome becomes a degenerate tyrant that rules Khauran with an iron fist, allowing her Shemite mercenaries to debauch any women they want, performing orgies in her royal palace and sacrificing her subjects to her pet Eldritch Abomination, who has taken residence in the desecrated Ishtar temple.
  • Intimate Marks: She is frequently depicted with her breasts on full display to showcase the red crescent moon birthmark.
  • Navel-Deep Neckline: Her outfits frequently have necklines that bare her cleavage and go all the way down to her midriff.
  • Red Right Hand: The birthmark which identifies Salome as a witch, a red crescent moon on her chest.
  • Religion of Evil: Salome worships a fell being named Thaug, whom she feeds innocents to regularly.
  • The Usurper: She usurps her sister's throne.


The Queen of Khauran in A Witch Shall Be Born.

  • Arranged Marriage: In Conan the Avenger, she had one with Yezdigerd in order to secure Kauran with Turan's protection. It doesn't quite pan out as planned.
  • Cain and Abel: The Abel to Salome's Cain.
  • Damsel in Distress: She spends most of her time in captivity in A Witch Shall Be Born and rescuing her is integral to the plot.
  • Deadpan Snarker: In the Dark Horse comics, she quips quite a lot, such as when she refuses the offer of Yezdigerd's emissary to protect her kingdom with money as payment:
    Taramis: My. That is quite the generous offer. Allow me to counter it with the sight of my backside.
  • The High Queen: Taramis is a ruler beloved by her people for kindness.
  • Proper Lady: She is pretty famed for her virtue, which shocks everyone when she carries out decadent orgies in her court (in reality, this is her evil sister masquerading as her).
  • Race Lift: In Marvel's Savage Sword of Conan, Taramis is depicted as a Caucasian female with blonde hair and blue-eyes, while in Dark Horse comics and original story's descriptions, she's Middle-Eastern looking.
  • Rape as Drama: She endures this under Constantius and his men.

The Servants of Bit Yakin


Gorulga is a Keshan High Priest.

  • Good Shepherd: He turns out to be an honest priest, despite Conan's beliefs to the contrary.
  • High Priest: This is his position.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: He will obey any orders the goddess Yeleya gives to him. Thutmekri and Conan both attempt to take advantage of that by using a fake Yelaya to turn him on the other.
  • Unwitting Pawn: To Thutmekri, who plans to use a fake goddess to manipulate him into giving the Teeth of Gwahlur to Thurmekri and execute Conan.


A corrupt Keshan priest who is part of Thutmekri's conspiracy

  • Big Bad: Since his accomplices Thutkekri and Zargheba are off-page antagonists, with the latter even being Killed Offscreen halfway through the story, Gwarunga effectively serves as the story's main on-page villain.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: He is impaled to death by Conan.
  • The Mole: He gives "secret of the pool-entrance to Zargheba" in order help him and Thutmekri in deceive Gwarunga's fellow Keshans.
  • Sinister Minister: He is a priest attempting to use a fake goddess to deceive the people, including his own boss, the high priest Gorulga.
  • Would Hit a Girl: After Muriela betrays Thutmekri, he chokes her and threatens to "twist off her [false] head."


A Corinthian dancing girl who impersonate Yelaya

  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: After Conan confronts her for being a fraud, she abandons her previously haughty attitude and begs for mercy.
  • And There Was Much Rejoicing: She expresses her relief when she learns Zargheba is dead.
    Muriela: He'll never whip me again.
  • Distinguishing Mark: He has a "crescent-shaped birthmark on [her] hip," which Conan uses to identify her when she is posing as Yelaya.
  • God Guise: She claims to be a goddess when impersonating Yelaya.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: In-Universe example. Conan notices her native Corinthian accent when impersonating Yelaya, princess of Alkmeenon.


Referenced in Jewels of Gwahlur, Thutmekri is a Stygian competing with Conan for the Teeth of Gwahlur.

  • Con Man: He tries to con the Keshans into giving him the Teeth of Gwahlur.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: In Jewels of Gwahlur, despite being frequently mentioned in the story as Conan's main rival, he doesn't physically appear throughout the story, leaving his accomplice Gwarunga as the main on-page antagonist.
  • Karma Houdini Warranty: He is killed in the pastiche The Ivory Goddess.
  • Noodle Incident: The narration of Jewels of Gwahlur mentions that "He and [Conan] knew each other of old, and without love."
  • The Rival: With Conan in the treasure hunt for the Teeth of Gwahlur.

Beyond the Black River

An Aquilonian who helps Conan defend the Aquilonian settlers against the Picts.

    Zogar Sag 

Zogar Sag is a Pictish wizard who comes into conflict with the Aquilonians.

  • The Beastmaster: He has power over animals who "remember Jhebbal Sag"
  • Big Bad: Of Beyond the Black River.
  • Half-Human Hybrid: He is the son of a demon.
  • Killed Offscreen: Zogar Sag is revealed to have been killed at the end of the story. Justified as the descriptions of the wound that inflicted on Zogar at the time of his death match the ones Conan inflicted on a demon at the climax of the story, and said demon mentioned that Zogar would suffer any injuries that he did.
  • Lean and Mean: He is described in the narration as "a lean figure of middle height"
  • Off with His Head!: Zogar Sag ends up being partially decapitated due to his connection with the demon Conan slew in this manner.
  • Summon Magic: He has the abilities to summon demons.
  • Synchronization: He is magically connected with a demon he summoned, who is his half-brother. Said demon says that he and Zogar with both receive any damage inflicted on the other. It results in Zogar being killed when Conan partially decapitates the demon.

Man Eaters of Zamboula

Totrasmek is an evil sorcerer who serves as the High Priest of Hanuman.
  • Big Bad: Of Man-Eaters in Zamboula.
  • The Dreaded: According to Zabibi, he is dreaded by several powerful people and groups.
  • High Priest: He is the High Priest of Hanuman.
  • I Own This Town: The narration of Man-Eaters of Zamboula mentions that "for years [he] had spun his slimy webs of power throughout the city of Zamboula"

The Hour of the Dragon


Encountered in Hour of the Dragon, she is a vampiress encountered by Conan in his quest for the Heart of Ahriman.

  • All Amazons Want Hercules: She is attracted to Conan because of his strength and offers to make him her mate.
  • Composite Character: In Kull the Conqueror, she is combined with Xatoltun and turned into the movie's Big Bad.
  • Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette: More obvious in Sorrow of Akivasha where she has marble-white skin.
  • Immortality Immorality: She could not bear the thought of growing old and shriveled with age, so she sought the favor of the dark gods to gain immortality.
  • Karma Houdini: Conan merely flees away from her rather than trying to fight her. As such, she has the dubious honor of being one of the very few Conan villains that was not defeated, killed or punished in any way. In the comics, while she lives forever, she realizes that she is forever alone.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: In addition to needing blood to stay young, she also has control over minor shadow demons.
  • Plot-Irrelevant Villain: Akivasha is just an obstacle encountered by Conan in the Stygian tombs and has no relation whatsoever with Xaltotun.
  • Sympathetic P.O.V.: In Conan the Cimmerian Issue# 15, her entire scene from Hour of the Dragon is reframed from her viewpoint, placing her in a more sad note.
  • Rogues' Gallery Transplant: Even though she is a Conan foe, she appeared as the Big Bad in the movie adaptation for Kull the Conqueror.
  • The Vamp: Both literally and figuratively.
  • Vampires Are Sex Gods: She tries to play up this angle by seducing Conan in her tomb and drink his blood, but he snaps out of it.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: She is noted to except for "her velvet sandals and broad jewel-crusted girdle about her supple waist she was quite nude".
  • Was It Really Worth It?: The entire point of Sorrows of Akivasha. She realizes that without companionship, eternal beauty and immortality don't mean a damn thing.
  • Who Wants to Live Forever?: Implies as much when talking to the Prince; while she wanted immortality, she's come to realize that without companionship, it's pretty hollow.

    Baron Amalric 
Amalric is a Nemedian who is allied with Xaltotun, Tarascus, and Valerius. He holds an even greater position of power in Nemedia and Aquilonia than their nominal rulers, King Tarascus and King Valerius, respectively.

    King Tarascus 

One of the conspirators responsible for Xaltotun's resurrected, he usurped the throne of Nemedia with the ancient sorcerer's help.

  • Cain and Abel: He conspires to have his older brother brother Nimed murdered with the aid of the sorcerer Xaltotun.
  • Evil Uncle: He conspires against his three nephews, successfully having them murdered through Xaltotun's supernatural aid.
  • Post-Final Boss: He is defeated by Conan following the deaths of Xaltotun and Amalric.
  • Puppet King: To Amalric.
  • Sole Survivor: By the end of The Hour of the Dragon, he is the final surviving member of the conspirators who resurrected Xaltotun.
  • The Usurper: To the Nemedian throne.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: His ascension to the throne was welcomed by the people of Nemedia, who blamed the previous king for a plague that struck Nemedia, unaware that Tarascus' sorcerous ally Xaltotun was behind with plague.

    King Valerius 

One of the conspirators who resurrected Xaltotun, Valerius usurped the throne of Aquilonia from Conan with the help of Xaltotun and his Nemedian allies.

  • And Now You Must Marry Me: He tries to force Countess Albionia to marry him.
  • The Caligula: During his reign as King of Aquilonia, he lives a life of debauchery and drunkenness, and is responsible for the raping, pillaging, and burning of his own subjects. Played With in that he is Obfuscating Insanity and is deliberately trying to run Aquilonia into the ground out of spite.
  • I Want Them Alive!: Defied. Upon learning that Conan not only survived his supposed death, but also saved Albiona from execution, he orders for them to be killed the moment they are found.
    Valerius: Take no chances with him. You all know the Countess Albiona. Search for her, and if you find her, kill her and her companion instantly. Do not try to take them alive
  • If I Can't Have You…: He tries to have Albionia put to death for rejecting his advances.
  • The Usurper: He usurps the throne of Aquilonia from Conan.

    Xaltotun of Acheron

A wizard from the long destroyed kingdom of Acheron that was resurrected by a couple of second-rate nobles conspiring to overthrow Conan after he is crowned King of Aquilonia.

  • Back from the Dead: He is resurrected at the beginning of The Hour of the Dragon.
  • Badass Boast: In The Hour of the Dragon, he boast that he is in control of the West: "[Conan] already knows what you kings have yet to learn—that it is not Tarascus, nor Valerius, no, nor Amalric, but Xaltotun who is the real master of the western nations."
  • Beard of Evil: He is depicted with a large one in the Dark Horse adaptation.
  • Big Bad: In The Hour of the Dragon.
  • Deal with the Devil: He offers one to Conan: If Conan promises to obey him, Xaltotun will help him retake Aquiolonia. Conan refuses this offer.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: Despite being the Final Boss of the Howard stories, the pastiches have Conan dealing with several antagonists after Xaltotun's defeat, such as King Yezdigerd, Yah Chieng, Kthantos, Louhi, King Nenaunir, Thoth-Amon, and Xotli.
  • Dragon-in-Chief: He was resurrected by the conspirators seeking to overthrown Conan to be this. He is clearly more powerful and dangerous than they are by themselves.
  • The Emperor: What Xaltotun seeks to become.
  • Evil Is Not a Toy: The nobles who resurrected the sorcerer thought they could control him and install one of their own in the throne after getting rid of Conan. They were wrong.
  • Evil Laugh: He laughs when turning a guardsman's girdle into a snake.
  • Evil Sorcerer: Xaltotun holds the distinction of being the most dangerous black wizard that Conan ever faced.
  • Final Boss: He is the final opponent faced in the Howard-written books. The pastiche chronologies, however, turn him into a Disc-One Final Boss.
  • High Priest: He was one for Set is his previous life, serving in Python.
  • Human Sacrifice: He personally carried out many sacrifices in his previous life. He attempts to [[Virgin Sacrifice sacrifice a virgin during the climax of the story.
  • I Want Them Alive!: He insists on taking Conan alive.
  • Kneel Before Zod:
    • He tries to convince Conan to obey him in exchange for giving him back Aquilonia.
    • Later in the story, he insists on his co-conspirators becoming his satraps.
  • Mage Species: Orestes outright calls him the "son of a race of wizards," which distinguishes him from other sorcerers encountered in the series.
  • No Honor Among Thieves: He offers to help Conan retake Aquilonia from his co-conspirators.
  • Not So Invincible After All: The aura of seeming invincibility he projects begins to fade when he fails to create a flood with his magic.
  • Oh, Crap!: His reaction when learning that Hadrathus has the Heart of Ahriman.
  • Religion of Evil: He is a follower of Set.
  • Speak of the Devil: Invoked by Zenobia, who warns Conan not to mention Xaltotun's name.
    Zenobia: Demons are often summoned by the sound of their name.
  • This Cannot Be!: His reaction when being informed that the flood he tried to create fails,
  • Villain Takes an Interest: Xaltotun wishes to make Conan his vassal, respecting him more than his own co-conspirators.
  • Virgin Sacrifice: He attempts to sacrifice a virgin at the climax of the story.
  • What Year Is This?: Xaltotun asks Orastes and his co-conspirators this question after they resurrect him.
  • Would Hit a Girl: He is willing to sacrifice a girl to win a battle.
  • You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry!: He warns Conan that "it will be better to submit without resistance than to suffer my wrath."


Zenobia was a Nemedian concubine that helps Conan escape prison during The Hour of the Dragon and ends up becoming his queen.

  • Adaptational Badass: In Conan the King by Marvel Comics; whereas in the books, she was just a concubine and a Non-Action Girl that made up her lack of fighting skills by being a Plucky Girl. In the comics though, she actually knows how to fight due to being raised by a soldier who expected a boy and shows her chops to her husband when he tells her to stay behind in his adventures.
  • Beautiful Slave Girl: She was one to King Numedides, but he had so many of them that he never touched her.
  • Convenient Miscarriage: In the comics in two separate continuities: in Marvel's Conan the King and in Dark Horse's Midnight God, the latter of whom was magically induced by a Stygian sorcerer.
  • Damsel in Distress: In the Dark Horse comics, she comes close to being sacrificed by Xaltotun. In the non-Howard books, she is kidnapped by a Khitai sorcerer and the search for her leads Conan around Hyboria.
  • Death by Childbirth: Between Conan of Aquilonia and Conan of the Isles, Zenobia dies giving birth to her and Conan's fourth child. The child is no luckier.
  • Diamonds in the Buff: Due to wearing jeweled breast plates.
  • Go-Go Enslavement: Justified since she is a harem girl.
  • The High Queen: As Conan's consort.
  • Hot Consort: Zenobia is quite the stunner judging by Conan's description.
  • Last Girl Wins: The love interest in the final Howard book and the one Conan settles down with.
  • Love at First Sight: Conan is curious as to why she would help him, she mentioned that she once saw him through a window riding in parade and fell in love with him from that instant.
  • Ms. Fanservice: She is described as wearing nothing but a wisp of silk twisted about her loins and "jeweled breast-plates."
  • Plucky Girl: Though she is no warrior, Zenobia is brave enough to enter the cells and release the captive king. She's also very intelligent. She deals with the guards, plans his escape route, brings him the right kind of dagger — more like a hunting knife, not just a ladylike letter opener type — and steals and hides a perfect horse for him from the royal stables. No wonder he wants her for his queen.
  • Second Love: If Bêlit was Conan's first true love, and all others in between just flings, Zenobia is this.

Red Nails

Olmec is the prince of Tecuhtli.
  • Beard of Evil: He has a beard, and proves to be treacherous towards Conan and Valeria.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Almost immediately after he boasts that "Olmec is lord of Xuchotl," he is put in his place by Tascela.
  • Bound and Gagged: He was bound and gagged to a Death Trap Tascela put him in.
  • Human Sacrifice: He fed people to the dragon living outside Xuchotl, who he worshipped as a god.
  • I Have You Now, My Pretty: He tries to force himself on Valeria.
    Olmec: We shall spend our lives in drinking and love-making. First let us drink!
  • Mr. Exposition: He explains to Conan and Valeria about the history of the city of Xuchotl and the Forever War that has engulfed it.
  • Neck Snap: He suffers this at Conan's hands.
  • Purple Is Powerful: He is introduced wearing purple silks.
  • Puppet King: To Tascela.
  • Taking You with Me: He admits that his people, the Tecuhltli, are dying, but he hopes to take down as many Xotalancas as possible.
    Olmec: We are dying, but before we die we will slay as many of the men of Xotalanc as the gods permit.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: He orders Conan to be killed despite Conan helping Olmec slay his enemies.
  • Would Hit a Girl: He proves willing to strike Valeria when she resists his advances.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Tries to have Conan killed after using Conan to destroy the Xotalancas.


Tascela is a Tecuhtli princess who seeks to sacrifice Valeria to restore her youth.

  • Big Bad: Of Red Nails. She is the true ruler of the Tecuhtli, as Prince Olmec is magically enslaved to her.
  • Deadpan Snarker: When seeing Olmec attempt to force Valeria to drink alcohol, she comments that "Your guest does not like your wine, Olmec."
  • Did You Actually Believe...?: She mocks Conan for thinking she wouldn't prepare for him.
    Tascela: Fool. Did you think I would not guard against your possible return? Every door in this chamber is guarded by such traps. Stand there and watch now, while I fulfill the destiny of your handsome friend! Then I will decide your own.
  • Evil Laugh: She laughs when mocking Conan for falling into her trap.
  • Evil Sorcerer: She is a sorcerous that kills women to preserve her youth.
  • Hot Witch: She is an attractive sorceress.
  • Hypnotic Gaze: Tascela is able to control Olmec by looking into his eyes.
  • Last of Her Kind: After the death of Tolkemec, she becomes the final surviving resident of Xuchotl for several moments before being killed as well.
  • In the Back: She is stabbed by Valeria in the back when she tries to reach for Tolkemec's Magic Wand.
    Red Nails: But as [Tascela] leaped, so did Valeria, with a dagger snatched from a dead man, and the blade, driven with all the power of the pirate's muscles, impaled the princess of Tecuhltli so that the point stood out between her breasts. Tascela screamed once and fell dead, and Valeria spurned the body with her heel as it fell.
  • More Deadly Than the Male: She overpowers her co-ruler, Olmec, after they have a disagreement over what to do with Valeria.
  • Older Than They Look: Although she has the appearance of a young women, Techotl tells Conan that she was already an adult "when the Tlazitlans journeyed from Lake Zuad."
  • Post-Final Boss: At the end of Red Nails, she is quickly dispatched by Valeria moments after the climactic battle between Conan and Tolkemec.
  • Really 700 Years Old: She is said by Olmec to be "centuries old." Olmec explains that "She [Tascela] renews her life and her youth by the sacrifice of beautiful young women."
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Despite not having royal blood, she is referred to a princess, and she is one of the rulers of Tecuhtli. She participates in the fight between the Tecuhltli and the Xotalanc. After the fight, the narration states that "Tascela was the only one of the Tecuhltli who had escaped without a wound. The princess was untouched, though she had fought as savagely as any."
  • Tempting Fate: Moments after dismissing "the ghost of Tolkemec" as a myth, a still living Tolkemec shows up and kills all of her remaining followers.
  • Ungrateful Bitch: She tries to kill Valeria despite her helping Tascela's people win their feud against the Xotalancs.
  • Vain Sorceress: She is a sorceress who maintains her youth by taking it from other women.
  • The Vamp: She magically bound Olmec to her will when sleeping with him beneath the black lotus.
  • You Fool!: She calls Conan a fool after he falls into her trap, and one of her minions a fool for believing in the ghost of Tolkemic.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: After the Xotalancas are killed, she tries to have Olmec killed in a Death Trap, now no longer needing him alive.

Tokemec was a former slave who became one of the co-rulers of the Tlazitlans, alongside Tecuhltii and Xotalanc. Eventually a feud broke out between the rulers, during which Tolkemec betrayed both of his fellow rulers. Eventually Tolkemec was captured, tortured, and imprisoned, but managed to escape.
  • Attack on the Heart: He is killed when Conan throws a knife at him, leaving "the hilt vibrating on his breast."
  • Beard of Evil: He has a white beard.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder:During the conflict between Tecuhltii and Xotalanc, "Tolkemec aided first one and then the other, betraying each faction as it fitted his purposes."
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: He spent several days being subjected to torture by the Tecuhltli twelve years before the events of Red Nails.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: He started off as a slave before becoming a king.
  • Magic Wand: He possesses a "curious jade-hued wand, on the end of which glowed a knob of crimson shaped like a pomegranate."
  • Make Them Rot: His wand can make his victims "[shrivel] and [wither] like a mummy."
  • Reports of My Death Were Greatly Exaggerated: He is presumed dead by Prince Olmec, but is revealed to still be alive towards the end of the story.
  • Was Once a Man: The narration of Red Nails mentions that "[Tolkemec] had dwelt apart from humanity so long that he was no longer human."


Valeria was a member of the Red Brotherhood who later joined up with Zarello's Free Companions, only to flee after she killed a Stygian officer.

  • Action Girl: She is a deadly fighter.
  • Attempted Rape: By Olmec after she helps him take out his enemies.
  • Badass in Distress: Despite her abilities as a warrior, she is captured by Olmec, who lusts after her, and later Tascela, who plans to kill her to restore her youth.
  • Designated Girl Fight: She kills Tascela at the end of the story.
  • Female Misogynist: The narration of Red Nails mentions that "Valeria had always been inclined to despise the other members of her sex."
  • Flaying Alive: Conan tells Valeria that this fate was in store for her had she been captured by the Stygians.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: She tortures Yasala, who tried to drug Valeria, in an attempt to force her to reveal who put her up to this. Yasala pretends she is willing to cooperate before splashing wine into Valeria's face and fleeing.
  • Lust Object: In the backstory of Red Nails, she was this to Red Ortho, who desired her as a mistress. During the story proper, she becomes one to Olmec as well. Conan pursued her when she fled the Free Companions, and is thus in the story, pretty much only because he desperately wants to get in her pants.
  • Out of the Frying Pan: After she is nearly raped by Olmec, Tascala stops him from doing so, only to try to kill Valeria to restore her youth.
  • Pirate Girl: She was a member of a group of pirates known as the Red Brotherhood.
  • Real Women Don't Wear Dresses: She is introduced wearing breeches instead of a skirt.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Described as "tall" in "Red Nails" and very definitely beautiful. In Conan — Blood of the Serpent she's explicitly only four inches shorter than Conan, himself, who is "a handspan over six feet." This is perhaps based on the version of the character from the film — Sandahl Bergman is only two inches shorter than Arnold Schwarzenegger.
  • Stripperiffic: When she is introduced in Red Nails, she is described as being "clad more scantily even than the others" ("others" meaning the other scantily-clad women in the room).
  • Woman Bites Man: She bites into Olmec's wrist when he is assaulting her.

The God in the Bowl

The Chief of the Inquisitorial Council of the city of Numalia, who leads the investigation into the murder of Kallian Publico.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Downplayed. He makes a serious effort to find the murderer of Kallian Publico instead of following Dionus' suggestion to beat a confession out of Conan, who is the most obvious suspect, and eventually comes to the correct conclusion that Conan is not the killer. On the other hand, even after admitting is certainly that Conan is innocent, he admits that he intends to use Conan as a scapegoat for the murder if he can't find the true murderer, so that he can "satisfy justice." He also offers to cover up Aztrias Petanius' attempted theft of a goblet if the latter admits to it.
  • Screw This, I'm Out of Here!: Towards the end of the story, he flees the Temple of Kallian Publico with his comrades once they see Prometo drop dead.

A Numalian prefect who is antagonistic towards Conan during the investigation of Kallian Publico's murder.

    Kallian Publicos 
The late owner of a museum Conan has been hired to steal from.
  • Asshole Victim: He intended to steal from a priest and and use his employee Arus as a scapegoat to be crucified, only for Kallian to be killed by a creature hidden inside the very bowl he intended to rob. He also had a slave, Enaro, who openly admitted to wanting to kill Kallian.
  • Death by Materialism: He opens a bowl intended for Caranthes, hoping to steal the treasure he believes to be inside it. He is instead killed by a monster hidden inside of it.
  • Posthumous Character: He is found at the beginning of The God in the Bowl.
  • Spanner in the Works: His greed derails Thoth-Amon's plan to assassinate Caranthes, as by opening the bowl Thoth-Amon sent Caranthes, Kallian set off a chain of events that ensure the monster hidden inside the never reaches its intended target of Caranthes.

The Black Stranger

The niece of Count Valenso
  • Arranged Marriage: Her uncle arranges one between her and Black Zarono, much to her dismay.
  • Death Glare: She gives one to her uncle after he whips Tina.
  • Mama Bear: While she is not Tina's mother, Belasa is protective of her, and even threatens to kill her uncle if she hurts Tina again.

    Black Zarono 
Black Zarono is a buccaneer captain who seeks the Treasure of Tranicos.
  • An Offer You Can't Refuse: He requests Belasa's hand in marriage from her uncle Valenso, and when he balks, Zarono reminds him that he has more "men and arms," and that Valenso will need Zarono's ship to return from exile.
  • Co-Dragons: With Menkara to Duke Villagro, and later to Thoth-Amon, in Conan the Buccaneer.
  • Deadpan Snarker:
    • In The Black Stranger, his response to Valenso telling him that his can defend his force against Zarono's men is that "You were not holding it very successfully against Strom[banni]."
    • Later in The Black Stranger, he tells Valenso that "Korzettas of honor have endured its rottenness with tranquillity for several generations" in respond to Valenso saying that "The rottenness of a royal court might sicken a man of honor."
  • Death Glare: In Conan the Buccaneer, he gives one to his ally Menkara after the latter tells their boss Villagro that Zarono had gotten into a tavern fight.
  • The Rival: With the pirate Strombanni for the Treasure of Tranicos.
  • Saved by Canon: Since his appearance in Conan the Buccaneer chronologically precedes his appearance in The Treasure of Tranicos, his survival is a Foregone Conclusion.
  • Social Climber: In The Black Stranger, he plans to marry Belasa, the niece of Count Valenso, in order to join the aristocracy.

    Count Valenso 
A Zingaran nobleman who has gone into hiding on the Pictish coast.
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: In his youth, he made a Deal with the Devil in order to dispose of one of his enemies, enabling him to become rich and powerful.
  • Deal with the Devil: In the backstory of The Black Stranger, he makes a deal with "a fiend from the outer gulfs of existence" to kill one of his enemies. In The Treasure of Tranicos de Camp's version of the story, he makes the deal with Thoth-Amon, who summons the "fiend from the outer gulfs" to kill his enemy. In both version of the story, he reneges on his end of the bargain. In 'The Black Stranger, he has a magician banish the fiend to hell, and in The Treasure of Tranicos'', he denounces Thoth-Amon to Zingara's ruler, forcing Thoth-Amon to flee Zingara.
  • I Gave My Word: He promises not to harm Strombanni when the latter meets up with Valenso to negotiate with him, and he plans to keep it.
  • Shoot the Messenger: When Tina gives Valenso news he does not want to believe, he whips her and threatens to flay her.
  • This Cannot Be!: He refuses to believes Tina's claims that she saw a "black man," and tries to whip her in an attempt to force her to recant her statement.
  • Would Hurt a Child: He whips the child Tina when she tells him about the "black man".
  • Who Dares?: In The Black Stranger, He exclaims "You dare!" to Zarono after the latter requests to marry Valenso's niece Belasa.

The Vale of Lost Women

    Devil from the Outer Dark 
An Eldritch Abomination that the residents of the Vale of Lost Women try to sacrifice Livia to.
  • Bat Out of Hell: It is an Eldritch Abomination with wings resembling those of a bat.
  • Eldritch Abomination: It is an otherworldly creature.
    The Vale of Lost Women: Its wings were bat-like, but its body and the dim face that gazed down upon her were like nothing or sea or earth or air; she knew she looked upon ultimate horror, upon black cosmic foulness born in the night-black gulfs beyond the reach of a madman's wildest dreams.
  • Final Boss: It is the last opponent Conan faces in the story.
  • Human Sacrifice: The residents of the Vale of Lost Women attempt to sacrifice Livia to it.

    King Bajujh 
The King of Bakalah.
  • Chronic Back Stabbing Disorder: He plans an attack on Jihiji despite the truce he made with them, and Conan expects Bajujh to do betray him as well.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: He is killed halfway through the story, leaving the "devil from the Outer Dark" and the women of the Vale as the story's endgame antagonists.
  • Off with His Head!: On the receiving end.
  • Villainous Glutton: He "[crams] his frog-like mouth to capacity with handfuls of mealies scooped up from a vessel held up to him by a kneeling women."


An Ophirean noblewoman held captive by King Bajujh.

  • Blue Blood: She belongs to "the house of Chelkus, scientists and noblemen of Ophir".
  • Damsel in Distress: At the beginning of the story, she is a prisoner of King Bajujh before Conan slays her captors, and later in the story, she is captured again by a group of women who try to sacrifice her to an Eldritch Abomination.
  • Human Sacrifice: She is almost sacrificed to a "devil from the Outer Dark."
  • Sex for Services: She offers herself to Conan if he kills Bajujh.