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

Publication history[]

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[]

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[]


  1. Mentzer, Frank. "Ay pronunseeAY shun gyd" Dragon #93 (TSR, 1985)
  2. Turnbull, Don, ed. Fiend Folio (TSR, 1981)
  3. Flat taste didn't go away, Dragon, p.6–7, 9. November 1981. (Temporary fix for {{cite journal}}, please update to use {{cite dragon}} and similar templates.)
  4. The Ruins of Andril: An AD&D adventure for 4-8 characters, levels 8-11, Dragon, p.41–56. January 1984. (Temporary fix for {{cite journal}}, please update to use {{cite dragon}} and similar templates.)
  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. Bulmahn, Jason (lead designer). Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary 3 (Paizo Publishing, 2011)
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