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' Golems are a class of monsters in NetHack. As they are inanimate objects given life, their corpses are sometimes useful or valuable objects, especially in the case of paper and gold golems. Because they are artificial constructs, scrolls of genocide do not work on golems.

Symbol Monster Corpse[1] Hit points[2][3]
' clay golem rocks 50
' glass golem pieces of worthless glass 60
' iron golem iron chains 80
' leather golem leather armors 40
' paper golem scrolls of blank paper 20
' rope golem (none) 30
' stone golem statue of a stone golem 60
' straw golem (none) 20
' wood golem quarterstaffs 50
' gold golem gold 40
' flesh golem flesh golem corpse (edible) 40

Golems are randomly generated, and an appropriate golem can also arise when trying to polymorph large piles of objects at once. For example, a pile containing many scrolls may become a paper golem, and a pile of rocks may become a clay golem.

In addition, polypiling many bone objects (such as unicorn horns) can produce a skeleton.

Stone golems can be created by stoning any of the other golems (e.g. with a cockatrice corpse). Stone golems themselves are stoning resistant, since it would be rather odd if stoning could kill them.

Casting stone to flesh at a stone golem will turn it into a flesh golem. The flesh golem is weaker in combat, and its corpse can give almost any resistance in the game.


Golems are creatures from ancient Jewish folklore. They are not derived from Gollum in The Lord of the Rings. The legendary golem was made of clay, but the word has also been used to describe similar creatures made from other materials.

Although the encyclopedia entry for gold golem describes their mythological counterparts as female, the NetHack monster is neuter.

Encyclopedia entries


"The original story harks back, so they say, to the sixteenth
century. Using long-lost formulas from the Kabbala, a rabbi is
said to have made an artificial man -- the so-called Golem -- to
help ring the bells in the Synagogue and for all kinds of other
menial work.
"But he hadn't made a full man, and it was animated by some sort
of vegetable half-life. What life it had, too, so the story
runs, was only derived from the magic charm placed behind its
teeth each day, that drew down to itself what was known as the
`free sidereal strength of the universe.'
"One evening, before evening prayers, the rabbi forgot to take
the charm out of the Golem's mouth, and it fell into a frenzy.
It raged through the dark streets, smashing everything in its
path, until the rabbi caught up with it, removed the charm, and
destroyed it. Then the Golem collapsed, lifeless. All that was
left of it was a small clay image, which you can still see in
the Old Synagogue." ...

[ The Golem, by Gustav Meyrink ]

Straw golem

Dorothy leaned her chin upon her hand and gazed thoughtfully
at the Scarecrow. Its head was a small sack stuffed with
straw, with eyes, nose, and mouth painted on it to represent
a face. An old, pointed blue hat, that had belonged to some
Munchkin, was perched on his head, and the rest of the figure
was a blue suit of clothes, worn and faded, which had also
been stuffed with straw. On the feet were some old boots with
blue tops, such as every man wore in this country, and the
figure was raised above the stalks of corn by means of the
pole stuck up its back.

[ The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, by L. Frank Baum ]

Wood golem

Come, old broomstick, you are needed,
Take these rags and wrap them round you!
Long my orders you have heeded,
By my wishes now I've bound you.
Have two legs and stand,
And a head for you.
Run, and in your hand
Hold a bucket too.
See him, toward the shore he's racing
There, he's at the stream already,
Back like lightning he is chasing,
Pouring water fast and steady.
Once again he hastens!
How the water spills,
How the water basins
Brimming full he fills!

[ The Sorcerer's Apprentice, by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe,
 translation by Edwin Zeydel ]

Gold golem

The bellows he set away from the fire, and gathered all the tools
wherewith he wrought into a silver chest; and with a sponge wiped
he his face and his two hands withal, and his mighty neck and
shaggy breast, and put upon him a tunic, and grasped a stout staff,
and went forth halting; but there moved swiftly to support their
lord handmaidens wrought of gold in the semblance of living maids.
In them is understanding in their hearts, and in them speech and
strength, and they know cunning handiwork by gift of the immortal

[ The Iliad, by Homer ]

Flesh golem

With an anxiety that almost amounted to agony, I collected
the instruments of life around me, that I might infuse a spark
of being into the lifeless thing that lay at my feet. It was
already one in the morning; the rain pattered dismally against
the panes, and my candle was nearly burnt out, when, by the
glimmer of the half-extinguished light, I saw the dull yellow
eye of the creature open; it breathed hard, and a convulsive
motion agitated its limbs.
How can I describe my emotions at this catastrophe, or how
delineate the wretch whom with such infinite pains and care I
had endeavoured to form? His limbs were in proportion, and I
had selected his features as beautiful. Beautiful!--Great God!
His yellow skin scarcely covered the work of muscles and
arteries beneath; his hair was of a lustrous black, and
flowing; his teeth of a pearly whiteness; but these luxuriances
only formed a more horrid contrast with his watery eyes, that
seemed almost of the same colour as the dun white sockets in
which they were set, his shrivelled complexion and straight
black lips.

[ Frankenstein, by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley ]


A user has suggested improving this page or section as follows:

"How many hit points do the Slash'EM golems have?"

Main article: Golem (SLASH'EM)

SLASH'EM features the following new golems:

Symbol Monster Corpse Hit points
' wax golem wax candles 40
' plastic golem credit cards; cheap plastic imitations of the Amulet of Yendor in older versions 60
' ruby golem rubies 250
' diamond golem diamonds 270
' sapphire golem sapphires 280
' steel golem iron chains 290
' crystal golem random gems 300

This page may need to be updated for NetHack 3.6.1.

It may contain text specific to NetHack 3.4.3. Information on this page may be out of date.

Editors: After reviewing this page and making necessary edits, please change the {{nethack-343}} tag to {{nethack-360}} or {{noversion}} as appropriate.


UnNetHack includes wax golems, as described above.

In addition, the Sheol branch contains two new golem types, the Ice golem, and the Crystal ice golem.