Amphisbaena (Dungeons & Dragons)

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Alignment Neutral
Type Magical Beast
Image image
Publication history
Source books Serpent Kingdoms, Tome of Horrors 1, 1E Monster Manual 1, Menace Manual, Monstrous Manual
Mythological origins Amphisbaena

In the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game, the amphisbaena (/æmfɪsˈbnə/ am-fis-BEE-nə)[1] is a snake-like magical beast based upon the Amphisbaena of Greek Mythology.

Publication history[edit]

The amphisbaena first appeared in the original first edition Monster Manual (1977), under the "Snake, giant" entry.

The amphisbaena appeared in the second edition Monstrous Manual (1993). It was expanded upon in Dragon #215 (March 1995), in "The Ecology of the Amphisbaena".[2]

The amphisbaena appeared in third edition in the Forgotten Realms setting book Serpent Kingdoms (2004).


As in myth, the amphisbaena is a giant serpent with a head at both ends. It travels by grasping one head in the other and rolling like a hoop. The fangs of the Amphisbaena are so poisonous that anything successfully bitten by it dies instantly. It is immune to cold-based attacks.

Amphisbaenae cannot speak, being animals.

They are neutral in alignment.

Other publishers[edit]

The amphisbaena appeared in the Tome of Horrors (2002) from Necromancer Games.[3]

The amphisbaena appeared in Paizo Publishing's book Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary 2 (2010), on page 25.[4]


  1. ^ Mentzer, Frank. "Ay pronunseeAY shun gyd" Dragon #93 (TSR, 1985)
  2. ^ Richards, Johnathan M. "The Ecology of the Amphisbaena." Dragon #215 (TSR, 1995)
  3. ^ Green, Scott; Peterson, Clark (2002). Tome of Horrors. Necromancer Games. pp. 7–8. ISBN 1-58846-112-2. 
  4. ^ Baur, Wolfgang, Jason Bulmahn, et al. Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary 2 (Paizo Publishing, 2010)