Lilith (Hebrew: לילית Līlīt; Kurdish: شەوە[dubious – discuss]; Arabic: ليليث Līlīṯ) is a legendary creature that appears in many creation myths. She has many origins with many variations on her name and common themes of infertility and unabated lust. For the most part she is considered a succubus, a powerful demonic creature who seduces men and sometimes eats children but has even appeared as a screech owl.
She is believed to have originated as a female Mesopotamian storm demon associated with wind and was thought to be a bearer of disease, illness, and death. The figure of Lilith first appeared in a class of wind and storm demons or spirits as Lilitu, in Sumer, circa 4000 BC. The phonetic name "Lilith" is traditionally thought to have originated in Ancient Israel somewhere around 700 BC, despite pre-dating even to the time of Moses.
In Jewish folklore Lilith is the name of Adam's first wife, who was created at the same time and same earth as Adam. She left Adam after she refused to become subservient to Adam and then would not return to the Garden of Eden after she mated with archangel Samael. Her story was greatly developed, during the Middle Ages, in the tradition of Aggadic midrashim, the Zohar and Jewish mysticism.
In some modern views Lilith was a mother goddess demonized by Semitic religions and now recaptured as a feminist icon. The Lilith legend is still commonly used as source material in modern fantasy and horror.