|Images of lamias
Source: Bestiary, pg(s). 216–217
Lamias are the weakest of a family of creatures known as lamyros, of which the kuchrimas, lamia matriarchs, and harridans are also members.1 They suffer an animalistic curse from an ancient and unknown affliction, and they can spread their curse to those they touch.2
A lamia's natural form resembles an attractive, slender humanoid from the waist up but has the lower body of an animal, beast, or monster, such as a lion or snake. While most are human in scale, some are massive with torsos the size of a giant's, and others have few humanoid features and the winged bodies of a buzzard.2
Lamia habitats are diverse but are often near former centers of civilization, such as ruined cities, destroyed fortresses, and forgotten temples. Their lairs in such places contain salvaged treasures, and some wield recovered magical daggers.2
Lamias are hunters with an affinity for magic, particularly illusions and enchantments that they use to lure, capture, and torture their prey. They form matriarchal tribes led by their eldest women, or by lamia matriarchs, who are powerful in occult magic and exclusively snake-bodied.2
Lamias despise deities, and from their wilderness lairs they often inspire or lure people drawn to chaos or evil into anti-religious cults. Lamias of such cults send their followers into devout places and infiltrate churches in order to embarrass, undermine, defame, and subvert them.2
The curse spread by a lamia's touch is known as the Lamia's Caress, and it fills its victim's mind with bestial, uninhibited thoughts and desires. The minds of afflicted creatures are clouded, leading them to act on impulse and disregard consequences, which in turn makes them more susceptible to the illusions and charms of lamias.2
The nature and origins of this curse are unknown and the subject of theorization, including suggestions that they were once mortals who shunned reason to take up bestial lives and were either rewarded with the curse by Lamashtu or punished with it by Pharasma.2
Like their more powerful kin, lamias are most frequently encountered in Varisia and the Hold of Belkzen due to the race's ancient ties to the lost realm of Thassilon. They live in smaller numbers throughout the Inner Sea region.3
For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.
- “Bestiary” in Spires of Xin-Shalast, 81. Paizo Inc., 2008 .
- “Monsters A-Z” in Bestiary, 216. Paizo Inc., 2019 .
- The Inner Sea World Guide, 305. Paizo Inc., 2011 .
- “Adventuring in Qadira” in Qadira, Jewel of the East, 38. Paizo Inc., 2017 .
- “Adventuring in Qadira” in Qadira, Jewel of the East, 39. Paizo Inc., 2017 .
- “Regions of the Dragon Empires” in Dragon Empires Gazetteer, 36. Paizo Inc., 2011 .