The Curse of Yig

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The Curse of Yig was originally published in the November 1929 issue of Weird Tales

"The Curse of Yig" is a short story by H. P. Lovecraft and Zealia Bishop in which Yig, "The Father of Serpents", is first introduced.

Background[edit]

Bishop supplied the story idea and some notes, paying Lovecraft to flesh it out in 1928. It could be said the tale was "ghost-written"; however, others class it as a "collaboration". Bishop then sold the story under her own name to Weird Tales magazine. It was published first in the November 1929 issue (volume 14, number 5) on pages 625-36.

It was the first of three tales Lovecraft wrote for Bishop, the others being "The Mound" and "Medusa's Coil".

Synopsis[edit]

Based in Oklahoma around 1889, a newly arrived couple learn about the local legends surrounding a "Snake God", Yig, who takes vengeance on anyone who kills a serpent by killing them or turning them into a half-snake monster. The husband has an intense snake phobia and his wife kills a nest of rattlesnakes at one of their campsites to prevent him finding them. He is horrified by the thought that Yig will take vengeance. They arrive at their plot of land and build their cabin. The husband is insistent on practicing various rituals from the native tribes to keep Yig away, grating heavily on his wife nerves.

In fear the woman kills her own husband in the dark, thinking he is Yig. She is taken to an asylum, and dies there... but not before giving birth to a half-snake creature.

Republication[edit]

The story has appeared in a number of horror anthologies, including:

External links[edit]