Samyaza (Aramaic: שמיחזה, Greek: Σεμιαζά), also Sahjaza, Semihazah, Shemyazaz, Shemyaza, Sêmîazâz, Semjâzâ, Samjâzâ, Semyaza, and Shemhazai, is a fallen angel of apocryphal Jewish and Christian tradition that ranked in the heavenly hierarchy as one of the Watchers. The name "Shemyaza(z)" means "the (or my) name has seen" or "he sees the name".
Sins of Samyaza and his associates
And Semjâzâ, who was their leader, said unto them: "I fear ye will not indeed agree to do this deed, and I alone shall have to pay the penalty of a great sin." And they all answered him and said: "Let us all swear an oath, and all bind ourselves by mutual imprecations not to abandon this plan but to do this thing." Then sware they all together and bound themselves by mutual imprecations upon it. (Enoch 6:3-5)
Samyaza convinced several other Watchers to join him in fornicating with women. As a result, he and the other sinful Grigori begot giant offspring (called Nephilim in the Book of Genesis) that dominated and feasted upon humans during the days of Jared. The Watchers' other sin was to teach humans various creative arts — especially Azazel's, who taught the secrets of war, which brought down the wrath of God.
God commanded the angel Gabriel to cause the Giants to wage civil war:
And to Gabriel said the Lord: "Proceed against the biters and the reprobates, and against the children of fornication: and destroy [the children of fornication and] the children of the Watchers from amongst men [and cause them to go forth]: send them one against the other that they may destroy each other in battle: for length of days shall they not have[.] (Enoch 10:9)
Finally, the judgement of the associates of Samyaza is described.
And the Lord said unto Michael: "Go, bind Semjâzâ and his associates who have united themselves with women so as to have defiled themselves with them in all their uncleanness. And when their sons have slain one another, and they have seen the destruction of their beloved ones, bind them fast for seventy generations in the valleys of the earth, till the day of their judgement and of their consummation, till the judgement that is for ever and ever is consummated. In those days they shall be led off to the abyss of fire:〈and〉to the torment and the prison in which they shall be confined for ever. And whosoever shall be condemned and destroyed will from thenceforth be bound together with them to the end of all generations[.] (Enoch 10:11-14)
Samyaza in popular culture
- Samyaza appears in the role-playing video game Final Fantasy XII as the Esper Shemhazai. Shemhazai is a female horse-like being who controls the souls of the dead, created in opposition to Igeyorhm the Martyr. Though she once served the gods as a guardian, she plays a role similar to that of Samyaza in revealing to the rebellious Esper Ultima the weaknesses of the gods before attacking the people.
- "Semyaza" and five other Grigori may be summoned from imprisonment to fight for the player in Dominions 3: The Awakening, and Dominions 4: Thrones of Ascension
- "Semyaza" also appears as the seven fallen angels in El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron.
- "Shemyaza" appears in Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers as a demon the player's party has to face. He also appears in many other games in the Megami Tensei series, sometimes as a boss or antagonist, sometimes as a random demon the player runs into or can summon. In Soul Hackers, he is working for another fallen angel, Azazel, who also appears in many of the games in the series.
- "Shimbatha," a mistranslation of "Shemyatha," appears in the 1991 game XZR 2, released in the West as Exile for the NEC Turbo Duo, translated by the now defunct Working Designs. Shemyatha is the main antagonist which the hero, Sadler, must face. In the Sega Genesis port of this game, when localised to the USA, this name was dropped in favor of the epithet "Holy Emperor." According to the Japanese story context in the game, Shemyatha possessed Hiram Abiff in the 6th millennium BC, during construction of Solomon's Temple, but was shortly murdered afterward. In the game's setting of 11th century CE, Shemyatha again takes over the body of a man, this time Yuug D'Payne, based on the historical founder and first Grand Master of the Knights Templar, Hugues de Payens.
- Samyaza or "Shemyaza" also appears in Storm Constantine's Grigori trilogy, as the primary villain who finds redemption. He first appears as a Grigori pariah who terrorizes the underground Grigori society by leaving a trail of highly public murders in his wake. He eventually redeems himself and consequently regains the memory of his previous incarnations. He goes on to fight an epic battle with the serpent Tiamat.
- Samyaza also appeared as a prime antagonist in the book series Dragons In Our Midst
- Sam the Imperator is revealed to be Samyaza in Children of the Serpent by Mark Ellis, the thirty-eighth book in the Outlanders novel series.
- Semjaza appears as an imprisoned being in Hell in Wayne Barlowe's novel God's Demon.
- The name Shemhazai appears in Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel's Legacy series.
- Samyaza or 'Samjeeza' appears in Cynthia Hand's Unearthly trilogy as the former leader of the Watchers and a minor villain.
- Semyaza appears as a supporting character in The Book of Creation, the first novel in The Watchers Chronicle, by Evan Braun and Clint Byars.
- Sam Yaza appears as a renegade hippie angel in modern day New Orleans in Woolf's Bane, by Alan Lance Andersen and Dane Rasmussen.
- Samyaza appears in R.D. Brady's Belial series as a Fallen Angel antagonist.
- "Samyaza" is the 5th song of the metal album Hermeticum by Portuguese band Dæmonarch.
Reported UFO abductions
- Billy Meier claims to have been visited on numerous occasions by a female alien named "Semjase" (a pronunciation of "Semyaza" in German).