THE BOOK OF IMAGINARY BEINGS "LILITH"
"For before Eve there was Lilith," reads a Hebrew text. This Creature's legend inspired the english poet Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1828-1882) to compose his "Eden Bower."Lilith was a serpent; she was Adam's first wife and gave him "glittering sons and radiant daughters," Then, God created Eve; as revenge on Adam's human wife, Lilith persuaded her to taste the forbidden fruit and to bear Cain, Abel's brother and his murderer. That is the primitive form of the myth that was followed by Rossetti. Down through the Middle Ages, under the influence of the Hebrew word layil, which means "night," little by little the myth became transformed: Lilith was no longer a serpent; she became a spirit of the night. Sometimes she was an angel that ruled over the procreation of man; sometimes she was demons that attacked those who slept alone or walked alone at night. In the popular imagination she often assumes the form of a tall, silent woman with long black hair.