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🔀 For the tiny, flesh-devouring creatures "who inhabit an alien dimension shrouded in night and chaos" see Doel.

Below him the ground was festering with gigantic Dholes, and even as he looked, one reared up several hundred feet and leveled a bleached, viscous end at him.
~ H. P. Lovecraft and E. Hoffmann Price , "Through the Gates of the Silver Key"

This subject contains information from the "Lovecraft Circle" Myth Cycles, and while guided by HPL are not based on his work alone. This subject contains information from the Expanded Cthulhu Mythos, and not based on H.P. Lovecraft's works directly. This subject contains information from the Mythos Adjacent Works, and while share similar themes and features of the Mythos are not based on his work, or generally considered a part of the Mythos proper. Dholes, also called bholes, are huge, slimy worm-like creatures, at least several hundred feet long. Because they avoid daylight and are covered in viscous goo, their features are nearly impossible to discern. They exist in the Vale of Pnath in the Dreamlands, and are also known to inhabit the planet Yaddith, where they have fought and emerged victorious against the native Yaddithians.

Dholes are featured in "Through the Gates of the Silver Key" and The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath, although in some editions of the latter, they are called "Bholes". It's been speculated that they might be the same as the "Dôls" mentioned in Arthur Machen's "The White People".


Now Carter knew from a certain source that he was in the vale of Pnath, where crawl and burrow the enormous bholes; but he did not know what to expect, because no one has ever seen a bhole, or even guessed what such a thing may be like. Bholes are known only by dim rumour from the rustling they make amongst mountains of bones and the slimy touch they have when they wriggle past one. They cannot be seen because they creep only in the dark.
~ H. P. Lovecraft , The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath

Dholes are gigantic worm-like burrowing horrors. They are not native to Earth and none seem to be brought here for more than brief periods - fortunately, for they seem to have riddled and laid waste to other worlds, consuming them from within. It is unknown how they reach new worlds, but theories include magical summoning to "swim" through space. Some speak of Dholes traveling via the the Dreamlands, forcing their way through the inter-dimensional fabric of dream to reach distant places.

They are rarely seen in daylight, and then only on planets that they have thoroughly conquered, as they dislike direct light, though it does not visibly harm them. Likewise, water does not affect them as it does some other worm-like Mythos entities (like Chthonians).

Behind the Mythos[]

  • In "The White People" by Arthur Machen, there is mention of "Dôls", but no description is given.
    • The name is also similar to the Doels, although these appear to be distinct, as Frank Belknap Long has described the Doels as tiny flesh-eating creatures, whereas Lovecraft identifies the Dholes as massive worm-like creatures.
  • In the works of Lin Carter, the Dholes are giant worms with white skin and porcine snouts, and are worshipers of Shub-Niggurath.
  • In "The Illuminatos! Trilogy" both the Dôls of Machen and Dholes of Lovecraft are mentioned as being references to mythical creatures associated with the Illuminati.
  • In addition, a Dhol appears in T. E. D. Klein's novel "The Ceremonies" in the form of a small, scurrying creature which possesses the bodies of various characters and animals. Klein makes reference to Machen's "The White People" throughout his novel (is this a Dhole? Its appearance does not match the description given here).
  • Dholes appear to be related to (or perhaps identical with) chthonians and their vermiform god, Shudde M'ell. Like dholes, chthonians are huge, worm-like creatures covered in viscous slime who live deep underground.
  • In Ire of the Void (EXP) by Richard Lee Byers, the protagonists are confronted by a Dhole after escaping the Hounds of Tindalos, but manage to destroy it using dynamite.