Caryatid column (Dungeons & Dragons)

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Caryatid column
Caryatid columns.JPG

In the Dungeons & Dragons role-playing game, the caryatid column (/ˈkɛərjətɪd/ KAIR-yə-tid)[1] is a type of construct. The creature's name comes from a type of statue called a caryatid.

Publication history[edit]

The caryatid column first appeared in the original first edition Fiend Folio (1981).[2] In a review of the Fiend Folio, Ed Greenwood called the caryatid column one of the creatures whose "names grate on the mind's ear".[3] Published first edition Advanced Dungeons and Dragons adventures which included Caryatid Columns as adversaries that the players encounter included "The Ruins of Andril", published in Dragon #81.[4]

The caryatid column appeared in second edition for the Greyhawk setting in the adventure module Greyhawk Ruins (1990) under the "construct, stone" entry.[5] The caryatid column appeared in the Monstrous Manual (1993) under the "golem" entry.[6] The giant caryatid column appeared in Dungeon #78 (January 2000).

The caryatid column appears in the third edition Fiend Folio (2003).[7]


A caryatid column is very similar to a golem. As with golems, the caryatid column is an artificial construct animated by magic. A caryatid column appears as a column with fine carving suggesting the shape of a woman holding a sword. When activated, (typically by an event trigger), they transform into "young maidens" and do battle, returning to their original position and state once the threat has been dispatched.

Other publishers[edit]

The caryatid column appeared in the Tome of Horrors (2002) from Necromancer Games.[8]

The caryatid column appeared in Paizo Publishing's book Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary 3 (2011), on page 46.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Mentzer, Frank. "Ay pronunseeAY shun gyd" Dragon #93 (TSR, 1985)
  2. ^ Turnbull, Don, ed. Fiend Folio (TSR, 1981)
  3. ^ Greenwood, Ed (November 1981). "Flat taste didn't go away". Dragon (review). TSR (55): 6–7, 9. 
  4. ^ Melluish, Ian (January 1984). "The Ruins of Andril: An AD&D adventure for 4-8 characters, levels 8-11". Dragon. TSR. 8 (7): 41–56. 
  5. ^ Mobley, Blake, and Timothy B Brown. Greyhawk Ruins (TSR, 1990)
  6. ^ Stewart, Doug, ed. Monstrous Manual (TSR, 1993)
  7. ^ Cagle, Eric, Jesse Decker, James Jacobs, Erik Mona, Matt Sernett, Chris Thomasson, and James Wyatt. Fiend Folio (Wizards of the Coast, 2003)
  8. ^ Green, Scott; Peterson, Clark (2002). Tome of Horrors. Necromancer Games. pp. 33–34. ISBN 1-58846-112-2. 
  9. ^ Bulmahn, Jason (lead designer). Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary 3 (Paizo Publishing, 2011)