The byakhees or byakhee birds are fictional creatures from the work of the American writer H.P. Lovecraft. They were later expanded upon by August Derleth. The beings first appeared in Lovecraft's short story The Festival and were later featured in Derleth's tale The House on Curwen Street. They are the servants of the Great Old One Hastur.
Lovecraft provides a description of the byakhees in The Festival:
Out of the unimaginable blackness beyond the gangrenous glare of that cold flame, out of the tartarean leagues through which that oily river rolled uncanny, unheard, and unsuspected, there flopped rhythmically a horde of tame, trained, hybrid winged things that no sound eye could ever wholly grasp, or sound brain ever wholly remember. They were not altogether crows, nor moles, nor buzzards, nor ants, nor vampire bats, nor decomposed human beings; but something I cannot and must not recall. They flopped limply along, half with their webbed feet and half with their membranous wings; and as they reached the throng of celebrants the cowled figures seized and mounted them, and rode off one by one along the reaches of that unlighted river, into pits and galleries of panic where poison springs feed frightful and undiscoverable cataracts.
- Curran, Bob (22 August 2012). A Haunted Mind: Inside the Dark, Twisted World of H.P. Lovecraft. Red Wheel/Weiser. ISBN 978-1-6016-3596-9. Search this book on
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