Lilith is a major antagonist appearing in the Freeform dark fantasy/action series Shadowhunters. She is the overarching antagonist in Season 2B, the main antagonist in Season 3A and the secondary antagonist in Season 3B.

A Greater Demon and the Queen of Edom, she is considered the Mother of Demons.

She is played by Anna Hopkins.



Thousands of years ago, Lilith was Adam's first wife in the Garden of Eden until she was cast out and replaced by Eve. Cursed with infertility, she tricked Cain, Adam and Eve's firstborn son, into killing his brother Abel. She somehow became the Mother of Demons at some later point in time and gained an enemy in the Queen of the Seelie Court and her successor.

Sometime in the 1990s, Valentine Morgenstern came to Lilith and asked her for demon blood to be given to his unborn son Jonathan. When Jonathan was 11, he proved to be too powerful for his father to control, as Lilith had suspected, so he was sent to Edom, where Lilith took him in and loved him as though he was her own child.

Mother and son reunited

Almost a decade after, after Jonathan was mortally wounded in battle against Jace Herondale, he used his blood to open a rift to Edom and called for Lilith. Several demons entered the earthly realm through the rift; one of them took Jonathan's body and brought him to an isolated cave, where the demons then coalesced into Lilith who reunited with her "son."

Resurrection plan and revenge against Jace Herondale

Seeking to restore Jonathan to life, Lilith set up the Church of Talto inside an abandoned New York cathedral where the energy from the ley lines was strong. Here, she set up a tomb with Jonathan directly underneath. She then made her way to a hospital where she looked at newborn babies and met Tim Dempsey, a nurse to whom she lamented her barrenness. Taking note of Tim's kindness, she chose him as her first disciple.

She had Jace possessed by The Owl and had him gather for her 33 chosen disciples for her ritual. She instructed Jace/The Owl to infect her disciples, enslaving them to her will and driving them to kill their loved ones, thus corrupting their souls. She then called her disciples to the Church of Talto after their kills and slit their throats over Jonathan's tomb, letting their demonically-altered blood to prepare Jonathan for his resurrection.

Lilith's plan ran into a couple of complications. First, her corruption of the ley line under the Church of Talto spread throughout the city, causing the warlocks' magic to malfunction. The Shadowhunters of the New York Institute worked with Magnus Bane to use the angelic energy from the Institute's power core to purge the corruption. Secondly, Jace failed to bring back a disciple, Morgan Young, and removed the demon possessing her.

Having lost her control over Jace because of his love for Clary Fairchild, Lilith decided to deal with Clary. Posing as a friend of Ragnor Fell, she visited Magnus and asked him for a spell to make someone fall out of love, convincing him that it was for an ex-lover of hers. Given a potion that would make whoever drank it lose all feelings for someone specific but told that it required a sliver of the person's soul, Lilith then summoned a demon to collect a sliver of Clary's soul, but it instead attacked Isabelle Lightwood. After the demon was slain, she personally tracked Clary to a farm, where the girl was speaking with the angel Ithuriel. In her true demonic form, Lilith killed Ithuriel and took a sliver of Clary's soul which she then used to complete Magnus's potion. She later gave the drink to Jace, making him completely loyal to her.

The next day, Lilith called Jace before her and ordered him to bring her final disciple. Sensing the real Jace struggling within The Owl, she informed him that, once he was finished serving her, she would unleash The Owl on his loved ones before releasing and then killing him. She then kissed him, strengthening him with demonic energy, before sending him on his way. The following evening, she slit the throat of Ollie Wilson, her last disciple, letting her corrupted blood spill onto Jonathan's tomb. She then moved Jonathan to another room and instructed Jace to go to Alicante to retrieve flesh from Valentine Morgenstern's corpse.

Later, Lilith screamed in agony after two of her disciples were disintegrated by the Mark of Cain on Simon Lewis' forehead during a fight with Simon and Luke Garroway inside the Church of Talto. When Ollie then told her of Simon, Lilith deduced that he was a Daylighter and that he had received the Mark from the Seelie Queen. Fearful of Simon, she transported her suite and Jonathan to a different building for their safety.

After sending her disciples to find Jace who had failed to return, she stormed the Seelie Court, where she massacred many Seelies before confronting the Seelie Queen and demanding she remove the Mark from Simon. When the Seelie Queen refused, Lilith prepared to kill her, but stayed her hand when the Seelie Queen offered to give her Jace's whereabouts. She then teleported to Magnus's loft, tossing Isabelle and her brother Alec Lightwood aside before pinning Magnus against a wall. After a moment, though, she released Magnus because she didn't want to get involved in a war with his father Asmodeus and subsequently left with Jace once again in her possession.

Aiming to neutralize Simon, Lilith had The Owl kidnap Heidi McKenzie and bring the vampire to her. She then suggested that Heidi "help" Simon reveal his vampire nature to his sister and his mother to keep him distracted from the resurrection ritual. She also sent Jace to collect a piece of Valentine's flesh and bring Clary to her. When Jace returned with both, Lilith placed Valentine's rib on top of Jonathan's tomb, then gave Jace a kiss to grant him energy as well as to taunt Clary, whom she then sent off to be dressed for the ritual. Sometime after that, she talked with Clary, losing her temper when Clary mocked the idea that demons were capable of love and insulted Jonathan.

As Luke and his team infiltrated the building, Lilith sent her disciples to hold off the attackers. Feeling a surge of familiar magic, she roared furiously as Magnus used borrowed power from Asmodeus to free Jace from The Owl. Nonetheless, she forged on with the ritual to resurrect Jonathan, carving a demonic mark into Clary's shoulder to bind Clary to Jonathan.

Defeat and banishment

Lilith was momentarily distracted when Clary, freed from her bonds by Simon, threatened to kill herself, and therefore Jonathan, only to then be struck by the Sun rune. Realizing too late that Simon was attacking Jonathan’s tomb, she impulsively attacked the Daylighter, only for her attack to be rebounded upon her seven-fold by the Mark of Cain. Rising to her feet, Lilith saw that Jonathan had come back to life and smiled in joy right before she was reduced to ashes, setting off a tremendous explosion as she was banished back to Edom.

Betrayal and brief reunion with old enemies

In the aftermath of Jonathan's rebirth, the Mark of Cain left Lilith considerably weakened, allowing her to be overthrown by Asmodeus, who then confined her to a room inside her palace in Edom with the magic he had taken from Magnus. When Jonathan returned to her, she doubted his loyalty to her and her suspicions were proven correct when Jonathan attempted to stab her with a Seraph blade. Fortunately for Lilith, she was summoned away from Edom at that moment by Clary, Jace, Isabelle, Simon, and Cain, materializing in the middle of a Malachi Configuration that had been modified by Clary to torture her.

When Clary demanded to know how to remove the rune that bound her to Jonathan, Lilith told her about the angelic swords Morning Star and Glorious, the latter of which had since been destroyed. When Jonathan arrived and began attacking the group, Lilith enticed Cain to protect her by promising to bring back his long-dead brother Abel. Once Cain released her and protected her from Simon, Lilith transported herself and Cain away.





  • Jace Herondale - Former Torturee and Former Thrall
  • Isabelle Lightwood - Attempted Victim and Killer
  • Alec Lightwood - Attempted Victim
  • Magnus Bane - Attempted Victim and Attempted Killer
  • Clary Fairchild - Enemy and Attempted Killer
  • Simon Lewis - Enemy and Defeater
  • Heidi McKenzie † - Manipulatee
  • Ollie Wilson - Former Thrall
  • Tim Dempsey - Temporary Thrall
  • Lorenzo Rey - Attempted Killer
  • Meliorn - Attempted Victim
  • Seelie Queen † - Attempted Victim
  • Ithuriel † - Victim
  • Morgan Young - Temporary Thrall
  • Asmodeus - Former Ally turned Enemy and Usurper
  • ​​​​​​​Cain - Manipulee
  • Eve - Romantic Rival
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