We all know about vampires and werewolves, or at least we think we do. The legends and myths that inspired these monsters are sometimes surprisingly different, but no less chilling. In this series of posts, Monster Monday, we’ll investigate the monsters that have informed our modern notions, as well as some lesser known monsters. Today, we talk about the Marid.
A marid is a type of djinni in Islamic folklore. Marids are considered the oldest and most powerful of the djinn. They are also very arrogant. The are often called blue djinn because of the blue color of their skin, and overall, they appear as the stereotypical genie in the lamp. They are associated with the water and prefer to seek refuge in the open ocean.
Like all djinn, Marids have free will but can be compelled to do chores. Marids are the djinn most often associated with the granting of wishes. It usually requires complicated magical rituals to bind a marid, but it can also be tricked into granting wishes.
One of the stories in One Thousand and One Nights tells the tale of a poor, luckless fisherman who caught a copper bottle in his net one day. When he opened it a marid came out and threatened to kill the fisherman, but the fisherman was clever and asked him how he was able to fit in the bottle in the first place. The marid, wanting to show off, shrank down and tucked himself in the bottle again. The fisherman quickly replaced the stopper. The marid begged for mercy, but the fisherman refused to let him out until the marid agreed to help him. When the marid did, the fisherman let him out, and the marid granted him prosperity.