Religion: Christian (denomination unknown)
Name: unnamed homeless man
First Appearance: Captain America (vol. 1) #177 (Sep. 1974): "Lucifer Be Thy Name"
Number of Appearances: 1
Note: quoted prayer when startled by Lucifer
An unnamed homeless man quoted a classic 18th Century Christian prayer when he was startled by the red-garbed alien known as "Lucifer."
In Captain America (vol. 1) #177, the alien who calls himself Lucifer managed to escape the alien dimension he had been exiled in after a previous encounter with Iron Man. This alien was first seen in X-Men (vol. 1) #9 (Jan. 1965).
Lucifer emerged on Earth in an alleyway in Harlem, New York City. The bottom 3 panels on page 8 in issue #177 show this homeless man stirring from a drunken stupor as he sees a strange light appear a few yards from him. Lucifer materializes within the light, exclaiming "Aha!"
The homeless man instantly jumps up and runs away, quoting a classic children's prayer that dates back to the 18th Century. The prayer or bedtime rhyme, known as "Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep," as quoted by his homeless man is as follows:
"Now I lay me down to sleep
I pray the Lord my soul to keep
If I should die before I wake
I pray the Lord my soul to take!"
The homeless man then screamed: "AAAAAA".
Lucifer was impressed by this. Lucifer observed: "Amazing! My appearance has often elicited cries of terror--but never before have I been greeted with poetry!"
One source cites Joseph Addison as the earliest source of this prayer, from an essay he wrote which appeared in The Spectator on March 8, 1711. A modified version of the prayer - matching that which the homeless man quoted - appeared later in The New England Primer.