It has wings, a long neck, a long tail, a strange head, and three long clawed digits on its hands. The vorpal sword kills the Jabberwock in the poem.
The original story tells us that the jabberwock was slain by an arrow shot by an orphan boy who had taken up arms against it. This is a reference to the archery contest between King Arthur and his enemies, during which both sides shoot arrows at one another. The king's men will have been trained to use swords instead, but even so, many will have been killed. The last jabberwock was destroyed in 1911.
In some versions of the story the boy is called Peter or Pax. He is also known as Thomas the Rhymer. There are several characters with these names around at the time the story is told, so they could be the same person. One version says that he died in battle years later at the age of thirty-three. Another says that he went mad from the pain after being hit by the arrow and was placed in an asylum for the insane.
Some scholars believe that the jabberwock was a real animal and that children played a part in its destruction in order to make sure there were no survivors.
This is why, in NetHack, the Vorpal Blade is an instant death for Jabberwocks.
However, in some versions of the game, there are other ways to kill them. The most common one is using fire. If you put your hand on a burning branch, you will lose it if you don't move it immediately.
There's also a spell that can do this: "Corpse-Spawn". You need to find a corpse of a Jabberwock and sprinkle some of its blood on the ground. Then, go into a graveyard and say this spell name three times.
At the end of the poem, the vorpal sword breaks when it encounters something that cannot be pierced. In real life, this would be the skeleton of the Jabberwock. However, in some versions of the game, there is another way to kill them: use the spell "Corpse-Spawn".
The Jabberwocky is portrayed as a hideous creature with "flaming eyes" that must be vanquished in the fight between good and evil. The monster also has "jaws that bite" and "claws that catch!" The beast is destroyed by an unknown youngster throughout the poem.
Jabberwocky originates from Lewis Carroll's 1865 children's book, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. In this story, the titular character meets a large, scary animal called a Jabberwock who tells her she cannot go home until she finds its twin. The pair then travel through strange lands full of bizarre creatures including a mad hatter, a white rabbit, a duck with a silver leg, and more until they reach their destination: the White Queen. It is there that the Jabberwock attacks them, but is defeated by Alice with an egg that she had taken from a chicken back in the beginning of their journey.
In later editions of the book, other characters besides Alice were introduced including a young boy named John who helps defeat the Jabberwock. Jabberwocky has also appeared in several other works written by Carroll including A Tangled Tale and Through the Looking-Glass.
In television commercials, the Jabberwock has been portrayed by various actors including Edward Herrmann in the McDonald's ads that aired in the 1980s.
The poem depicts the hero's father telling him to avoid many deadly animals, but the hero gets his sword, goes in search of the Jabberwock, kills it, and comes home with its head, much to his father's delight. This is probably the oldest known example of a literary curse: an incantation delivered by one person that will cause harm to another.
According to tradition, King Edward I of England ordered the arrest and trial of the man who had written "Jabberwocky". The accused was found guilty of treason against King Edward III and executed. Some historians believe that this story is a myth created after the real culprit was already dead. They claim that "Jabberwocky" could not have been a threat to the king's life because it was written several years after his death. However, others argue that even if this story is true, it does not mean that the curse wasn't effective as a means of intimidation toward other kings.
In any case, "Jabberwocky" has been interpreted as a prophecy by many readers, some of whom have warned people about coming danger. In 1872, John Bell Taylor wrote a novel called "The Coming of the Knight", in which he included a chapter titled "The Curse of the Jabberwock".