From PathfinderWiki

The Crimson Son
Devil King
Lord of the Eighth
Merchant of Souls
Seneschal of Hell
Areas of Concern
Con artists, evil barristers, the immoral and desperate, wicked gaolers
Master laws and use them to your benefit, enable the desperate, excoriate others with veiled mockery
Break a contract you made, get caught breaking the law
Cleric Alignments (1E)
Domains (1E)
Evil, Knowledge, Law, Rune
Subdomains (1E)
Devil, Language, Memory, Thought
Cleric Alignments (2E)
Domains (2E)
Glyph, knowledge, secrecy, tyranny
Favored Weapon
Trident and ring
Sacred Animal
Sacred Colors
Red, yellow
Source: Breaking the Bones of Hell, pg(s). 70ff. (1E)
Gods & Magic (Second Edition), pg(s). 124
f. (2E)

(devil, evil, extraplanar, lawful)
Any (Hell)
Source: Bestiary 6, pg(s). 28–29

The archdevil Mephistopheles (pronounced mef-uh-STOF-uh-leez)1 is the ruler of Caina, the Eighth Layer of Hell,23 where he keeps many of Hell's greatest secrets and contracts.4


Mephistopheles is a humanoid, red skinned devil with three pairs of wings and four pairs of horns. He has a pair of red draconic wings, two of black feathers, and two of flaming bones. Two large curved horns extend from his forehead. Two smaller curved horns extend from the sides of head, and a pair of straight ones from the top. The last set of horns are short and thick, protruding from the back of his head. Mephistopheles wears the impressive jewels and robes of planar princes and emperors he has outwitted.56


Mephistopheles originated as the consciousness of Hell itself, predating Asmodeus' discovery of the plane. When Asmodeus and his followers entered Hell following their Exodus from Heaven, Asmodeus traveled into Caina and made a pact with Hell known as the Sealed Skein.7 Once the deal was struck, Asmodeus tore Hell's very flesh from its bones, reshaping it into a being he named Mephistopheles. The newly formed entity, the first true devil, pledged to oppose Asmodeus' enemies as if they were its own, and became one of Asmodeus' closest lieutenants.5 This story is recorded in the Book of the Damned.8


Unholy symbol

Mephistopheles' official and true unholy symbol is, in essence, a crimson trident piercing a golden ring, with the three prongs of the trident alluding to the spires of Caina.9 His symbols are rarely seen, however, as owing one's allegiance to Mephistopheles is most often kept secret. Simpler, alternative versions of his unholy symbol exist, including a red sun eclipsed by three mountains; a tongue pierced with three studs; and a scale surmounted with a feather, topped by a bone. The latter evokes Mephistopheles' three sets of wings.5

Unholy Text

While Mephistopheles has no interest in creating a religious text, the gelugon Aolectres tasked a Keleshite scholar Volzajal with creating one as penance for attempting to break an infernal contract. Volzajal wrote around 600 pages of simplistic sayings on how to become a master deceiver titled Three Lies. He was then required to create 4,443 more copies, and whether intentionally or not, the versions differ from grammatical errors to entire proverbs being altered. Worshippers of Mephistopheles claim that only three versions were created the same, and that those versions revealed the techniques of true deception. Regardless of this view, few of his faithful actually study Three Lies, instead viewing the tome as a lesson on deception in and of itself.10


Paizo published a major article entitled "Mephistopheles, the Crimson Son" in Breaking the Bones of Hell.

For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.

  1. Erik Mona, et al. “Appendices” in Campaign Setting, 247. Paizo Inc., 2008
  2. Erik Mona, et al. “Chapter 4: Organizations” in Campaign Setting, 186. Paizo Inc., 2008
  3. F. Wesley Schneider. Hell and the Archdevils” in Princes of Darkness, Book of the Damned Volume 1, 20–21. Paizo Inc., 2009
  4. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 231. Paizo Inc., 2011
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 F. Wesley Schneider. Mephistopheles, the Crimson Son” in Breaking the Bones of Hell, 71. Paizo Inc., 2016
  6. Paizo Inc., et al. “Index” in Book of the Damned, 715. Paizo Inc., 2017
  7. F. Wesley Schneider. Mephistopheles, the Crimson Son” in Breaking the Bones of Hell, 72. Paizo Inc., 2016
  8. Crystal Frasier. “In Hell's Bright Shadow” in In Hell's Bright Shadow, 5. Paizo Inc., 2015
  9. F. Wesley Schneider. Princes of Darkness, Book of the Damned Volume 1, inside front cover. Paizo Inc., 2009
  10. F. Wesley Schneider. Mephistopheles, the Crimson Son” in Breaking the Bones of Hell, 74. Paizo Inc., 2016

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