Vishrava was a brahmin who loved knowledge and the gods, but his wife, Kaikasi, was a rakshasi, a shape-shifting creature who loved gold and blood.
Their first child, a son, was dreadful to behold, having ten heads and ten pairs of arms. Vishrava gave his son the name Dashagriva, which means Ten-Necks. Later he would be called Ravana, He-Who-Roars.
The sky rained blood at Dashagriva's birth. Jackals howled, and other vicious beasts ran in ill-omened circles around the rakshasi mother and her child.
Vishrava and Kaikasi later had three more children: two boys, Kumbhakarna and Vibhishana, and a girl, Shurpanakha.