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The Chernobog From The Witcher Season 2 Explained

Monsters are a Witcher's stock in trade, and ultimately their primary source of income. Witchers themselves are former humans who have been exposed to a powerful alchemical concoction capable of enhancing their speed, strength, and endurance. Geralt of Rivia (Henry Cavill) is the mercenary monster hunter fans of Netflix's "The Witcher" franchise are most familiar with. In the first season, Geralt fights genies, possessed princesses, sylvan familiars, and undead monstrosities.

Now in Season 2, "The Witcher" expands the repertoire of fearsome creatures that Geralt must face off against. These include monsters that can shape change, vampire-like terrors, tangled masses of violent tree branches, and one that is a horrible amalgamation of insect and claw. Based on the books from Polish writer Andrzej Sapkowski, which also inspired the popular video game franchise, "The Witcher" has no shortage of inspiration for its nightmare-inducing beasts, but viewers may wonder where the flying Chernobog comes from, and what inspired its creation.

The Chernobog is inspired by Slavic folklore

The Chernobog is a rarity in "The Witcher" because it is one of the few monsters that do not occur in either the books or the video games, outside of a few references. Instead, the creature appears to be directly inspired by Slavic folklore. During Season 2, it takes a combined effort of both Geralt and Ciri (Freya Allan) in order to kill the bloodthirsty abomination. Ciri climbs a high rock to appear as bait, while Geralt drinks one of the potions and waits in ambush. The attack is savage, and Geralt causes a deep and fatal wound across most of the body of the Chernobog.

In Slavic lore, the Chernobog — or Zcerneboch, aka "the black god" – is a god of bad fates who brings death and woe. According to the scholarly website Brill, the writings of a medieval Saxon monk named Helmold once stated, "Also, the Slavs have a strange delusion. At their feasts and carousals, they pass about a bowl over which they utter words, I should not say of consecration but of execration, in the name of [two] gods -– of the good one, as well as of the bad one -– professing that all propitious fortune is arranged by the good god, adverse, by the bad god. Hence, also, in their language they call the bad god Diabol, or Zcerneboch, that is, the black god."

On the show, the Chernobog is formed from stellacite, an arcane mineral found in the mysterious obelisks that dot the world of "The Witcher." These are speculated to be gateways to different "spheres," or alternate dimensions. Geralt, Ciri, and Yennefer (Anya Chalotra) briefly visit one of these fire-soaked realities, so chances are there will be far more monsters in Season 3, and perhaps another Chernobog.