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Submitted by on Jun 2, 2022

Ghoul is a hideous humanoid or demonlike monster that originated in pre-Islamic Arabian religion and is linked with graveyards and the consumption of human flesh. The phrase is frequently employed in modern fiction to describe a certain type of undead creature.

By extension, the term ghoul is used in a negative way to describe someone who enjoys the macabre or works in a career that is directly related to death, such as a gravedigger or graverobber.

Ghoul comes from the Arabic ghl, which comes from the verb ghla, which means “to seize.” In Arabic, the phrase can also be used to indicate someone who is greedy or gluttonous. See also gal and gala’s etymology, which includes “to cast spells,” “scream,” and “crow,” as well as its associations with “warlike ardor,” “wrath,” and the Akkadian “gallu,” which refers to underworld demons.

In William Beckford’s Orientalist book Vathek, published in 1786, the term was first employed in English literature to describe the ghl of Arabic folklore. Ghouls have appeared in popular culture since this concept of the ghoul was established.

The ghul is reported to live in graves and other abandoned locations in Arabic mythology. The male ghoul is known as ghul, while the female is known as ghulah. According to one account, the Arabic ghoul is a female entity who is frequently referred to as Mother Ghoul (Umm Ghulah) or Aunt Ghoul. In numerous stories, she is seen bringing hapless individuals, mainly males, into her house so she may eat them.

A ghoul, according to some, is a desert-dwelling, shapeshifting demon who can take on the form of an animal, particularly a hyena. It entices unsuspecting humans into arid wastelands or abandoned locations, where it slays and devours them. The creature also preys on youngsters, consumes blood, takes cash, and eats the dead, after which it assumes the shape of the most recent victim. Ghul-e Biyaban, a particularly terrible figure believed to roam the desert of Afghanistan and Iran, was mentioned in one of the stories.

The western concept of ghoul was not introduced into European civilization until Antoine Galland translated One Thousand and One Nights into French. The ghoul was described by Galland as a horrible beast that lived in cemeteries and feasted on corpses.

Despite the fact that ghouls are not mentioned in Islamic texts, certain Quran exegetes claim to have discovered a narrative of their genesis. According to one account, the shayatin (devils) formerly had access to the sky, where they eavesdropped and returned to Earth with concealed information to pass on to the soothsayers. Three celestial realms were barred to them when Jesus was born. The other four were outlawed after Muhammad’s arrival. The comets scorched the Marid amid the shayatin as they proceeded to soar to the skies. They were disfigured and driven insane if the comets didn’t burn them to death. They were cursed to roam the world as ghouls after falling to the deserts.

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