Gargoyles are a of types of guardian spirit that are very commonly associated with Phidas and Phidas' temples all the way back to the early The Second Age. By the The Third Age, the utility of gargoyles became so obvious that many more of tThe Nine] besides Phidas use gargoyles to defend their holy sites. Gargoyle spirits do not have a set physical form by themselves but they can possess or merge with a properly consecrated gargoyle statue. When an intruder approaches near a properly consecrated gargoyle statue, the spirit will enter the statue and repel the intruders. Some gargoyles carry weapons (if the statue was carved with weapons), but most gargoyles simply bludgeon enemies with their giant stone fists. A few temples and holy sites keep smaller weaker gargoyles in various alcoves. These gargoyles cannot fight (or at least not fight very well) but they are very loud, acting like an alarm system. If an authorized person approaches, these gargoyles will shriek and wail alerting the denizens of the intruder. It is expensive and time consuming to consecrate a gargoyle statue to allow gargoyle spirits to merge with it. Many gargoyle statues are not consecrated but they remain a popular architecture choice. They are imposing and can intimidate superstitious thieves because you can never be 100% sure a gargoyle statue won't come to life and attack you.