|Death and Underworld|
|Abode||16th floor in the Sky|
|Parents||Gök Tanrı and Yer Tanrı|
In the myths of the Turko-Mongol peoples, Erlik was involved in the creation of humanity. He slew the messenger-god, Maidere, and is a teacher of sin. He is sometimes represented by a totemic bear.
In Turkic mythology, Erlik was the deity of evil, darkness, lord of the lower world, and judge of the dead. He is known as the first of mankind, created by Ulgen. He wants to be equal to Ulgen, but is in a position inferior to him. Then he wanted to make his own land and was sent to the prison at the 9th layer of the earth and became opposed to the upper world, the realm of light.
The evil spirits created by Erlik cause misfortune, sickness, and death to mankind. These spirits are imagined as Erlik's assistants. Besides these, his 9 sons and daughters help their father in the way of evil. Erlik's daughters especially try to change a shaman's mind while he is attempting to reach Ulgen with their beauties. Erlik gives all kinds of sickness and wants sacrifices from the people. If they do not sacrifice to him, he catches the dead bodies of the people that he killed and takes them away to this lower world and then makes them his slaves. So, especially in the Altays, when sickness appears, people become scared of Erlik and sacrifice him a lot of animals.
In the prayers of shamans, Erlik is described as a monster, having the face and teeth of a pig combined with a human body. Besides his face, he is an old man with a well-built body, black eyes, eyebrows, and mustache.
Children of Erlik
Erlik has nine sons, named Karaoğlanlar (Black Boys). They are “Karash Khan, Matır Khan, Shingay Khan, Komur Khan, Badish Khan, Yabash Khan, Temir Khan, Uchar Khan, Kerey Khan”. And he has nine daughters, that named Karakızlar (Black Girls). But no one knows their names.
They are the sons of Erlik.
- Karash Han: The god of darkness.
- Matyr Han: The god of courage and bravery.
- Shyngay Han: The god of chaos.
- Komur Han: The god of evil.
- Badysh Han: The god of disaster.
- Yabash Han: The god of defeat.
- Temir Han: The god of iron and mining.
- Uchar Han: The god of informants.
- Kerey Han: The god of factious'.
- Çoban, Ramazan Volkan. Türk Mitolojisinde Kötülük Tanrısı Erlik’in İnanıştaki Yeri, Tasviri ve Kökeni (Turkish)
- R. Barsbold və A. Perle, 1980, Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 25(2): səh. 187-195
- Türk Söylence Sözlüğü (Turkish Mythological Dictionary), Deniz Karakurt, (OTRS: CC BY-SA 3.0)
- "Упоминание божества Эрлика в древнетюркской рунической надписи Алтын-Кёль (Runic Inscriptions from Khakassia)". (Russian)