The ancient god Dagon is first mentioned by Lovecraft in his 1917 story, entitled “Dagon”, where, haunted by his bizarre encounter with a “vast, Polyphemus-like, and loathsome” creature of the deep sea, the narrator of the tale seeks out a “celebrated ethnologist” and amuses him “with peculiar questions regarding the ancient Philistine legend of Dagon, the Fish-God.” Such an identification here remains nothing more than a vague speculation. However, in “The Shadow over Innsmouth” (1931), Lovecraft writes of the isolated and decaying, Massachusetts seaport of Innsmouth as being the home of The Esoteric Order of Dagon, “a peculiar secret cult which had gained force there and engulfed all the orthodox churches”. The Order is in fact the organized basis for a clandestine traffic with the Deep Ones, amphibious, frog-like, fish creatures of great age and intelligence. “Father Dagon” appears to be regarded as the progenitor of these beings, of whom it is said that “some day, if they remembered, they would rise again for the tribute Great Cthulhu craved.”
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