An overpass on I-4 just north of Orlando at the St. John's River in Seminole County. It is known as the "Dead Zone" because of four graves beneath the highway. The history of this area goes back to 1887 when a yellow fever epidemic hit a small Roman Catholic colony killing four members of one of it's families. With their priest dead, there was no one to administer last rites and they were buried without ceremony in four graves. In 1905, Albert Hawkins bought the land and cleared it for farming. He found the four graves and in respect for the dead, Hawkins farmed around the little cemetery which sat in the middle of the field like an island. The area became known as the Field of the Dead and was for many years a well-kept secret by the local community. When Hawkins died in 1939 his widow continued to own the land until 1960 when it was purchased by the state for the building of Interstate-4. The little cemetery was identified to the State surveyors, but the graves were not removed and were soon covered up with fill dirt to elevate the new highway. At the exact time the fill dirt was dumped on the site, Hurrican Donna crossed the state, the eye of this strange stormed passed right over the graves. The fury and flooding caused by Hurrican Donna disrupted highway construction for several months. Not only was Donna the worst storm to hit the interior of Central Florida in a century, it followed a very strange path. It had already crossed South Florida from the Atlantic and appeared to be heading westward into the Gulf of Mexico--then it took a strange and eerie turn, and basically followed the right-of-way of Interstate-four through Central Florida with the eye passing over the graves about midnight. The storm exited into the Atlantic near Ormand Beach. Many people believe that the strange maneuver of Hurrican Donna was caused by the highway construction tampering with the Dead. Witnesses have said their cell phones will pick up strange voices at the south end of the Interstate-4 bridge in Seminole County. One woman reports that if she is talking with someone on the phone, the conversation is interrupted by what she believes to be "the voices of the dead." This section is also infamous for an extremely high number of accidents, reports of ghost hitch-hikers, static on car radios and cell phones. Also reported, are sitings of white mist and balls of light as you pass through this section of the interstate.
According to Eskimo lore, an Angiak is a child of the living dead. Eskimo often had to give up their new-born children during harsh times and would do so by abandoning them in the snow. Unless the Eskimo tribe moved to a new land, it was believed that the ghosts of these babies would come back to haunt them. An Angiak is said to gain strength upon each visit to the tribe, until it is powerful enough to seek revenge on the elders.
Also Banshi and Benshee, Irish and Scottish in origin. A female death omen spirit that manifests to herald approaching death with wailing. The word is derived from the Old Irish ben sidhe, a woman of the fairy folk, or 'woman of the fairy mound', but it is translated by different scholars in a variety of ways, including Female Fairy, Angel Of Death, Lady Of Death, Woman Of Peace, White Lady Of Sorrow, Nymph Of The Air, and Spririt Of The Air, amongst others. Many people have described the 'terrible wail', which precedes a death, and certain families are traditionally believed to be 'followed' by the Banshee. The word is sometimes also used to denote a sort of demon, but in Nordic folklore the Banshee is always benevolent. The Banshee of legend is actually a disembodied soul, either of someone who in life was strongly attached to the family or hated all it's members. So, if she loves those whom she calls, the wail is soft, tender, soothing chant, intended to either give notice of death's proximity or reassure the one destined to die, or to comfort the survivors. But if instead the Banshee during her life was an enemy of the family, the wail is more like the scream of a fiendish ghost, a demonic howling of delight over the coming fatal agony of one of her foes.
British mythology and folklore
Barghest, Bargtjest, Bo-guest, Bargest or Barguest is the name often given in the north of England, especially in Yorkshire, to a legendary monstrousblack dog with huge teeth and claws, though in other cases the name can refer to a ghost or Household elf, especially in Northumberland and Durham (see). One is said to frequent a remote gorge named . There is also a story of a Barghest entering the city of York occasionally, where, according to legend, it preys on lone travellers in the city's narrow Snickelways. Whitby is also associated with the spectre. A famous Barghest was said to live near Darlington who was said to take the form of a headless man (who would vanish in flames), a headless lady, a white cat, a dog, rabbit and black dog. Another was said to live in an "uncannie-looking" dale between Darlington and Houghton, near Throstlenest.
The derivation of the word barghest is disputed. Ghost in the north of England was once pronounced guest, and the name is thought to be burh-ghest: town-ghost. Others explain it as German Berg-geist (mountain spirit), or Bär-geist (bear-spirit), in allusion to its alleged appearance at times as a bear. Another mooted derivation is 'Bier-Geist', the 'spirit of the funeral bier'.
Primarily a British phenomenon, Black Dogs are spirit apparitions that generally appear at night. These appartitions can be distinguished from normal flesh-and-blood black dogs by features such as large or glowing eyes, sometimes only one; an ability to disappear or appear out of thin air or into and out of the ground; and no head, two heads or the ability to change their size or appearance. Black Dogs are most often seen on roads or other places where people move from one locality to another, including footpaths, bridges, crossroads, gates, doors, stairs and corridors. Another common haunt for the Black Dogs is graveyards, leading some people to suspect these dogs tend to haunt Spirit Paths. Some people believe that a Black Dog is an omen of death, and that to see one means either you or a family member will die. In ancient European folklore, the dog is seen as both the guardian and consumer of dead spirits; one such belief is referred to as the Wild Hunt, where a pack of dogs and a master of the hunt fly through the sky looking for lost souls. Others believe Black Dogs are helpful, leading lost travelers or protecting them from harm.
It was seen for the first time in Puerto Rico in 1994( though there are versions from all over Latinamerica), it's called that for it's thirst for all 4 legged farm animals blood, there are many versions of how it might look but, no one seems to be equal to the other, it leaves on the victims two punture wounds similar to a Vamps' bite, no one has ever been able to get any real fiscal evidence about such creature but it's cases seem to multiply every day and no one seems to know how to kill it.
Thanks to Paula!
A species of animals that are associated particularly with Puerto Rico (where it was first reported), Mexico, Chile, Brazil and the United States. Translated from spanish to english the chupacabra literally means goat-sucker in reference to the creatures habit of attacking and drinking the blood of livestock.
The crocotta (or corocotta, crocuta, leucrocotta, or yena), is a mythical dog-wolf of India or Ethiopia, linked to the hyena and said to be a deadly enemy of men and dogs.
Strabo, who uses the word crocuttas, describes the beast as the mixed progeny of a wolf and a dog (Geographica, XVI.4.16).
Pliny in his work Natural History (VIII.72 and 107) variously described the crocotta as a combination between dog and wolf or between hyena and lion. Of the hyena, Pliny writes that it "is popularly believed to be bisexual and to become male and female in alternate years, the female bearing offspring without any male," and that "among the shepherds's homesteads it simulates human speech, and picks up the name of one of them so as to call him to come out of doors and tear him to pieces, and also that it imitates a person being sick, to attract the dogs so that it may attack them; that this animal alone digs up corpses; that a female is seldom caught; that its eyes have a thousand variations of color; moreover that when its shadow falls on dogs they are struck dumb; and that is has certain magic arts by which it causes every animal at which it gazes three times to stand rooted to the spot. When crossed with this race of animals the Ethiopian lioness gives birth to the corocotta, that mimics the voices of men and cattle in a similar way. It has a unbroken ridge of bone in each jaw, forming a continuous tooth without any gum."
Pliny (VIII.72-73) also writes of another hyena-like creature, the leucrocotta, which he calls "the swiftest of all beasts, about the size of an ass, with a stag's haunches, a lion's neck, tail and breast, badger's head, cloven hoof, mouth opening right back to the ears, and ridges of bone in place of rows of teeth this animal is reported to imitate the voices of human beings."
The Byzantine scholar Photius, epitomizing an ancient work by the Greek author Ctesias (Indica, L), writes: "In Ethiopia there is an animal called crocottas, vulgarly kynolykos [dog-wolf], of amazing strength. It is said to imitate the human voice, to call men by name at night, and to devour those who approach it. It is as brave as a lion, as swift as a horse, and as strong as a bull. It cannot be overcome by any weapon of steel."
Claudius Aelianus (aka Aelian) in his book On the Characteristics of Animals (VII.22) specifically links the hyena and corocotta and mentions the creature's fabled ability to mimic human speech. Porphyry in his book On Abstinence from Animal Food (III.4), writes that "the Indian hyaena, which the natives call crocotta, speaks in a manner so human, and this without a teacher, as to go to houses, and call that person whom he knows he can easily vanquish."
The crocotta was reported to have appeared more than once in the Roman arena. According to the Augustan History (Pius, X.9), the emperor Antonius Pius presented a corocotta, probably at his decennalia in AD 148. The historian Cassius Dio(LXXVII.1.3-5) credits the later emperor Septimius Severus with bringing the crocotta to Rome, saying this "Indian species...was then introduced into Rome for the first time, so far as I am aware. It has the color of a lioness and tiger combined, and the general appearance of those animals, as also of a dog and fox, curiously blended."
Later bestiaries of the Middle Ages confounded these various accounts, so that one finds the largely mythical creature given differing names and various characteristics, real and imaginary. Among the characteristics not found in the ancient sources was the idea that the eyes of a crocotta were striped gems that could give the possessor oracular powers when placed under the tongue.
In the Zoroastrian religion, a daeva is a demonic and destructive being. Daeva's are combated by the ahuras who help to uphold the moral law.
A legendary subterranean passageway in Passaic, New Jersey that many people believe ultimately leads to the lair of the Devil. The area is a maze of underground tunnels and storm sewers: deep inside, a network of dead trees can be found, each planted exactly three feet apart. According to numerous accounts, dead cats and birds hang from the tree trunks, and an evil spirit guards the passage.
The ghostly double of a living person, adapted from the German word doppelganger (look-alike). The term refers to any double of a person, most commonly in reference to a so-called evil twin. The word is also used to describe a phenomenon in which you catch your own image out of the corner of your eye. In some mythologies, seeing one's own doppelganger is a death omen. A doppelganger seen by friends or relatives of a person may bring bad luck or is an indication of approaching illness.
Chinese dragons are legendary creatures in Chinese mythology and folklore, with mythic counterparts among Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese and Turkic dragons. In Chinese art, dragons are typically portrayed as long, scaled, serpentine creatures with four legs. In contrast to European dragons that are considered evil, Chinese dragons traditionally symbolize potent and auspicious powers, particularly control over water, rainfall, and floods. In yin and yang terminology, a dragon is yang (male) and complements a yin (female) fenghuang "Chinese phoenix".
The dragon is sometimes used in the West as a national emblem of China. However, this usage within both the People's Republic of China and the Republic of China on Taiwan as the symbol of nation is not common. Instead, it is generally used as the symbol of culture. The dragon is also a symbol of power, strength, and good luck.
Historically, the dragon was the symbol of the Emperor of China. In the Zhou Dynasty, the 5-clawed dragon was assigned to the Son of Heaven, the 4-clawed dragon to the Zhuhou (seigneur), and the 3-clawed dragon to the Daifu. In the Qing Dynasty, the 5-clawed dragon was assigned to represent the Emperor while the 4-clawed and 3-clawed dragons were assigned to the commoners. The dragon in the Qing Dynasty appeared on national flags.
In European-influenced cultures, the dragon has aggressive, warlike connotations and it's conjectured that the Chinese government wishes to avoid using it as a symbol, but most Chinese disagree with this decision. Westerners only sometimes confuse the disposition of the benevolent Chinese dragon with the aggressive Western dragon. In Hong Kong, the dragon is part of the design of Brand Hong Kong, a symbol used to promote Hong Kong as an international brand name.
Many Chinese people often use the term "Descendants of the Dragon" (pinyin: lóng de chuán rén) as a sign of ethnic identity, as part of a trend started in the 1970s when different Asian nationalities were looking for animal symbols for representations. The wolf was used among the Mongols, the monkey among Tibetans.
In Chinese culture today, it is mostly used for decorative purposes. It is a taboo to disfigure a depiction of a dragon; for example, an advertisement campaign commissioned by Nike, which featured the American basketball player LeBron James slaying a dragon (as well as beating up an old Kung Fu master), was immediately banned by the Chinese government after public outcry over disrespect.
In Chinese daily language, excellent and outstanding people are compared to the dragon while incapable people with no achievements are compared with other, disesteemed creatures, such as the worm. A number of Chinese proverbs and idioms feature references to the dragon, for example: "Hoping one's son will become a dragon" (i.e. be as successful and powerful as a dragon).
The origin of Chinese dragon is not certain, but some scholars believe that it originated from totems of different tribes in China. Some have suggested that it comes from a stylized depiction of existing animals, such as snakes, fish, or crocodiles. For example, the Banpo site of the Yangshao culture in Shaanxi featured an elongated, snake-like fish motif. The theory of snakes or fish as the origin of the Chinese dragon is not widely accepted.
An alternative view, advocated by He Xin, is that the early dragon depicted a species of crocodile. Specifically, Crocodylus porosus, which is the largest living reptile. The crocodile is known to be able to accurately sense changes in air pressure, and be able to sense coming rain. This may have been the origin of the dragon's mythical attributes in controlling the weather, especially the rain. The association with the crocodile is also supported by the view in ancient times that large crocodiles are a variety of dragon. For example, in the Story of Zhou Chu, about the life of a Jin Dynasty warrior, he is said to have killed a "dragon" that infested the waters of his home village, which appears to have been a crocodile.
Others have proposed that its shape is the merger of totems of various tribes as the result of the merger of tribes. The coiled snake or dragon form played an important role in early Chinese culture. Legendary figures like Nüwa and Fuxi are depicted as having snake bodies. Some scholars have noted that a myth arose that the first legendary Emperor of China Huang Di (Yellow Emperor) used a snake for his coat of arms. According to the myth, every time he conquered another tribe, he incorporated his defeated enemy's emblem into his own, thus explains why the dragon appears to have features of various animals. Jade badges of rank in coiled form have been dated to the Hongshan culture.
From its origins as totems or the stylized depiction of natural creatures, the Chinese dragon evolved to become a mythical animal. The Han Dynasty scholar Wang Fu recorded Chinese myths that long dragons had nine anatomical resemblances.
The people paint the dragon's shape with a horse's head and a snake's tail. Further, there are expressions as 'three joints' and 'nine resemblances' (of the dragon), to wit: from head to shoulder, from shoulder to breast, from breast to tail. These are the joints; as to the nine resemblances, they are the following: his horns resemble those of a stag, his head that of a camel, his eyes those of a demon, his neck that of a snake, his belly that of a clam (shen), his scales those of a carp, his claws those of an eagle, his soles those of a tiger, his ears those of a cow. Upon his head he has a thing like a broad eminence (a big lump), called [chimu]. If a dragon has no [chimu], he cannot ascend to the sky.
Further sources give variant lists of the nine animal resemblances. Sinologist Henri Doré lists these characteristics of an authentic dragon: "The horns of a deer. The head of a camel. A demon's eyes. The neck of a snake. A tortoise's viscera. A hawk's claws. The palms of a tiger. A cow's ears. And it hears through its horns, its ears being deprived of all power of hearing." He notes that, "Others state it has a rabbit's eyes, a frog's belly, a carp's scales." The anatomy of other legendary creatures, including the chimera and manticore, is similarly amalgamated from fierce animals.
Chinese dragons were considered to be physically concise. Of the 117 scales, 81 are of the yang essence (positive) while 36 are of the yin essence (negative). Initially, the dragon was benevolent but the Buddhists introduced the concept of malevolent influence among some dragons. Just as water destroys, they said, so can some dragons destroy via floods, tidal waves and storms. They suggested that some of the worst floods were believed to have been the result of a mortal upsetting a dragon.
Many pictures of oriental dragons show a flaming pearl under their chin. The pearl is associated with wealth, good luck, and prosperity. Chinese dragons are occasionally depicted with bat-like wings growing out of the front limbs, but most do not have wings, as their ability to fly (and control rain/water, etc.) are mystical and not seen as a result of their physical attributes.
This description accords with the artistic depictions of the dragon down to the present day. The dragon has also acquired an almost unlimited range of supernatural powers. It is said to be able to disguise itself as a silkworm, or become as large as our entire universe. It can fly among the clouds or hide in water (according to the Guanzi). It can form clouds, can turn into water or fire, can become invisible or glow in the dark (according to the Shuowen Jiezi).
In Singapore and many other countries, folktales speak of the dragon having all the attributes of the other 11 creatures of the zodiac, this includes the whiskers of the rat, the face and horns of an ox, claws and teeth of a tiger, belly of a rabbit, body of a snake, legs of a horse, the beard of a goat, wit(or brain) of a monkey, crest of a rooster, ears of a dog, the snout of a pig.
In some circles, it is considered bad luck to depict a dragon facing downwards, as it is seen as disrespectful to place a dragon in such manner that it cannot ascend to the sky. Also, depictions of dragons in tattoos are prevailent as they are symbols of strength and power, especially criminal organisations where dragons hold a meaning all on their own. As such, it is believed that one must be fierce and strong enough, hence earning the right to wear the dragon on his skin, lest his luck be consumed by the dragon.
Chinese dragons are strongly associated with water in popular belief. They are believed to be the rulers of moving bodies of water, such as waterfalls, rivers, or seas. They can show themselves as water spouts (tornado or twister over water). In this capacity as the rulers of water and weather, the dragon is more anthropomorphic in form, often depicted as a humanoid, dressed in a king's costume, but with a dragon head wearing a king's headdress.
There are four major Dragon Kings, representing each of the four seas: the East Sea (corresponding to the East China Sea), the South Sea (corresponding to the South China Sea), the West Sea (sometimes seen as the Indian Ocean and beyond), and the North Sea (sometimes seen as Lake Baikal).
Because of this association, they are seen as "in charge" of water-related weather phenomenon. In premodern times, many Chinese villages (especially those close to rivers and seas) had temples dedicated to their local "dragon king". In times of drought or flooding, it was customary for the local gentry and government officials to lead the community in offering sacrifices and conducting other religious rites to appease the dragon, either to ask for rain or a cessation thereof.
The King of Wu-Yue in the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period was often known as the "Dragon King" or the "Sea Dragon King" because of his extensive hydro-engineering schemes which "tamed" the sea.
According to Chinese legendary, both Chinese primogenitors, the earliest Emperors Yan Di and Huang Di were closely related to 'Long' (Chinese Dragon). At the end of his reign, the first legendary Emperor, Huang Di, was said to have been immortalized into a dragon that resembled his emblem, and ascended to Heaven. The other legendary Emperor, Huang Di's brother, Yan Di was born by her mother's telepathy with a mythic dragon. Since the Chinese consider Huang Di and Yan Di as their ancestors, they sometimes refer to themselves as "the descendants of the dragon". This legend also contributed towards the use of the Chinese dragon as a symbol of imperial power.
The dragon, especially yellow or golden dragons with five claws on each foot, was a symbol for the emperor in many Chinese dynasties. The imperial throne was called the Dragon Throne. During the late Qing Dynasty, the dragon was even adopted as the national flag. The dragon is featured in the carvings on the steps of imperial palaces and tombs, such as the Forbidden City in Beijing.
In some Chinese legends, an Emperor might be born with a birthmark in the shape of a dragon. For example, one legend tells the tale of a peasant born with a dragon birthmark who eventually overthrows the existing dynasty and founds a new one; another legend might tell of the prince in hiding from his enemies who is identified by his dragon birthmark.
In contrast, the Empress of China was often identified with the Fenghuang.
In modern times, belief in the dragon appears to be sporadic at best. There appear to be very few who would see the dragon as a literally real creature. The worship of the Dragon Kings as rulers of water and weather continues in many areas, and is deeply ingrained in Chinese cultural traditions such as Chinese New Year celebrations. Dragon kites are also used in these celebrations.
Various European Mythologies
European dragons are legendary creatures in folklore and mythology among the overlapping cultures of Europe.
In European folklore, a dragon is a serpentine legendary creature. The Latin word draco, as in constellation Draco, comes directly from Greek (drákon, gazer). The word for dragon in Germanic mythology and its descendants is worm (Old English: wyrm, Old High German: wurm, Old Norse: ormr), meaning snake or serpent. In Old English wyrm means "serpent", draca means "dragon". Finnish lohikäärme means directly "salmon-snake", but the word lohi- was originally louhi- meaning crags or rocks, a "mountain snake". Though a winged creature, the dragon is generally to be found in its underground lair, a cave that identifies it as an ancient creature of earth. Likely, the dragons of European and Mid Eastern mythology stem from the cult of snakes found in religions throughout the world.
In Western folklore, dragons are usually portrayed as evil, with the exceptions mainly appearing in modern fiction. In the modern period the dragon is typically depicted as a huge fire-breathing, scaly and horned dinosaur-like creature, with leathery wings, with four legs and a long muscular tail. It is sometimes shown with feathered wings, crests, fiery manes, ivory spikes running down its spine and various exotic colorations.
Many modern stories represent dragons as extremely intelligent creatures who can talk, associated with (and sometimes in control of) powerful magic. In stories a dragon's blood often has magical properties: for example in the opera Siegfried it let Siegfried understand the language of the Forest Bird. The typical dragon protects a cavern or castle filled with gold and treasure and is often associated with a great hero who tries to slay it, but dragons can be written into a story in as many ways as a human character. This includes the monster being used as a wise being whom heroes could approach for help and advice, so much so that they resembled Asian dragons rather than European dragons of myth.
Roman dragons evolved from serpentine Greek ones, combined with the dragons of the Near East, in the mix that characterized the hybrid Greek/Eastern Hellenistic culture. From Babylon, the musrussu was a classic representation of a Near Eastern dragon. John's Book of Revelation – Greek literature, not Roman – describes Satan as "a great dragon, flaming red, with seven heads and ten horns". Much of John's literary inspiration is late Hebrew and Greek, but John's dragon is more likely to have come originally through the Near East. Perhaps the distinctions between dragons of western origin and Chinese dragons are arbitrary, since the later Roman dragon was certainly of Iranian origin: in the Roman Empire, where each military cohort had a particular identifying signum, (military standard), after the Parthian and Dacian Wars of Trajan in the east, the Dacian Draco military standard entered the Legion with the Cohors Sarmatarum and Cohors Dacorum (Sarmatian and Dacian cohorts) – a large dragon fixed to the end of a lance, with large gaping jaws of silver and with the rest of the body formed of colored silk. With the jaws facing into the wind, the silken body inflated and rippled, resembling a windsock. This signum is described in the surviving epitome of Vegetius De Re Militari 379 CE:
The first sign of the entire legion is the eagle, which the eagle-bearer carries. In addition, dragons are carried into battle by each cohort, by the 'dragoneers'
and in Ammianus Marcellinus, xvi. 10, 7 It is hard to resist giving this Romanized Parthian dragon a distant Chinese origin.
The most famous dragons in Norse and Germanic mythology are:
In Britain, the dragon is now more commonly associated with Wales, as its national flag features a red dragon (Y Ddraig Goch). This may originate in Arthurian Legend where Myrddin, employed by Gwrtheyrn, had a vision of the red dragon (representing the Britons) and the white dragon (representing the invading Saxons) fighting beneath Dinas Emrys. This particular legend also features in the Mabinogion in the story of Lludd and Llefelys.
According to Fox-Davies, the red dragon of Wales originated with the standard of the 7th century king Cadwaladr, and was used as a supporter by the Tudor dynasty (who were of Welsh origin). Queen Elizabeth, however, preferring gold, changed the royal mantle and the dragon supporter from red to gold, and some Welsh scholars still hold that the dragon of Wales is properly ruddy gold rather than gules. There may be some doubt of the Welsh origin of the dragon supporter of the Royal arms, but it certainly was used by King Henry III. It has also been speculated that the red dragon of Wales may have even earlier origins in the Sarmatian-influenced Draco standards carried by Late Roman cavalry, who would have been the primary defence against the Saxons.
Dragons of Slavic mythology hold mixed temperaments towards humans. For example, dragons in Bulgarian mythology are either male or female, each gender having a different view of mankind. The female dragon and male dragon, often seen as brother and sister, represent different forces of agriculture. The female dragon represents harsh weather and is the destroyer of crops, the hater of mankind, and is locked in a never ending battle with her brother. The male dragon protects the humans' crops from destruction and is generally loving to humanity. Fire and water play major roles in Bulgarian dragon lore; the female has water characteristics, whilst the male is usually a fiery creature. In Bulgarian legend, dragons are three headed, winged beings with snake's bodies.
In Bulgarian, Russian, Belarusian, Ukrainian and Serbian lore, a dragon, zmey (Russian), smok (Belarusian) zmiy (Ukrainian), is generally an evil, four-legged beast with few if any redeeming qualities. Zmeys are intelligent, but not very highly so; they often place tribute on villages or small towns, demanding maidens for food, or gold. Their number of heads ranges from one to seven or sometimes even more, with three- and seven-headed dragons being most common. The heads also regrow if cut off, unless the neck is "treated" with fire (similar to the hydra in Greek mythology). Dragon blood is so poisonous that Earth itself will refuse to absorb it. In Bulgarian mythology these dragons are sometimes good, opposing the evil Lamya, a beast that shares a likeness with the zmey.
The most famous Polish dragon is the Wawel Dragon or Smok Wawelski, the Dragon of Wawel Hill. It supposedly terrorized ancient Kraków and lived in caves on the Vistula river bank below the Wawel castle. According to lore based on the Book of Daniel, it was killed by a boy who offered it a sheepskin filled with sulphur and tar. After devouring it, the dragon became so thirsty that it finally exploded after drinking too much water. A metal sculpture of the Wawel Dragon is a well-known tourist sight in Kraków. It is very stylised but, to the amusement of children, noisily breathes fire every few minutes. The Wawel dragon also features on many items of Kraków tourist merchandise.
Other dragon-like creatures in Polish folklore include the basilisk, living in cellars of Warsaw, and the Snake King from folk legends.
The Cuélebre, or Culebre, is a giant winged serpent in the mythology of Asturias and Cantabria, in the north of Spain. It usually lives in a cave, guards treasures and keeps nymph-like beings called xanas as prisoners. They are immortal, but grow old. They can be tricked in particular ways, especially on certain days.
There is a legend that a dragon dwelled in the Peña Uruel mountain near Jaca. It says that it could mesmerize people with his glance, so the young man who decided to kill the beast equipped himself with a shiny shield, so that the dragon's glance would be reflected. So, when the young man arrived the cave where the dragon lived, he could kill it easily because the dragon mesmerized itself. This legend is very similar to the Greek myth of Medusa.
The king of Peter IV of Aragon used a dragon on his helmet to show that he was the king of Aragon, as a heraldic pun (Rei d'Aragón, dragón).
Herensuge is the name given to the dragon in Basque mythology, meaning apparently the "last serpent". The best known legend has St. Michael descending from Heaven to kill it but only once God agreed to accompany him in person.
Sugaar, the Basque male god, is often associated with the serpent or dragon but able to take other forms as well. His name can be read as "male serpent".
A. Xaho, a romantic myth creator of the 19th century, fused these myths in his own creation of Leherensuge, the first and last serpent, that in his newly coined legend would arise again some time in the future bringing the rebirth of the Basque nation.
Dragons are well-known in Catalan myths and legends, in no small part because St. George (Catalan Sant Jordi) is the patron saint of Catalonia. Like most dragons, the Catalan dragon (Catalan drac) is an enormous serpent with two legs, or, rarely, four, and sometimes a pair of wings. As in many other parts of the world, the dragon's face may be like that of some other animal, such as a lion or bull. As is common elsewhere, Catalan dragons are fire-breathers, and the dragon-fire is all-consuming. Catalan dragons also can emit a fetid odor, which can rot away anything it touches.
The Catalans also distinguish a víbria or vibra (cognate with English viper and wyvern), a female dragon with two prominent breasts, two claws and an eagle's beak.
In Portuguese mythology, coca is a female dragon that battles Saint George on the Corpus Christi holiday. The fighting has a symbolic meaning: when the coca defeats Saint George the crops will be bad and there will be famine and death. When Saint George defeats the coca he cuts off her tongue and ears; the crops will have a good year and it announces prosperity. Still, she is called "saint" coca just like George is called saint and the people cheer for her. Another dragon called drago is also represented in Portuguese mythology and used to take part in celebrations during the Middle Ages.
The legend of Saint George and the dragon is well-known in Italy, but other Saints are depicted fighting a dragon. For instance, the first bishop of the city of Forlì, named Saint Mercurialis, was said to have killed a dragon and saved Forlì, so he often is depicted killing a dragon. Likewise, the first patron saint of Venice, Saint Theodore of Tyro, was a dragon-slayer, and a statue representing his slaying of the dragon still tops one of the two columns in St. Mark's square. St. Michael, the patron saint of paratroopers, is also frequently depicted slaying a dragon. Many dragons of the European Middle Ages were thought to be demonic or of evil status.
According to the Golden Legend, compiled by the Italian Jacobus de Voragine, Saint Margaret the Virgin was swallowed by Satan in the shape of a dragon, from which she escaped alive when the cross she carried irritated the dragon's innards. The Golden Legend, in an atypical moment of scepticism, describes this last incident as "apocryphal and not to be taken seriously" (trans. Ryan, 1.369) - which did not prevent the legend from being popuar and getting artistic treatments.
But many more are the legends about dragons in Italy, particularly in Umbria. One of the most famous dragons of Italian folklore is Thyrus, a wyvern that besieged Terni in the Middle Ages. One day, a young and brave knight, tired of witnessing the death of his fellow citizens and depopulation of Terni, faced the dragon and killed him. From that day, the town assumed the creature in its coat of arms. Also a latin inscription proofs this: "Thyrus et amnis dederunt signa Teramnis" that stands under the banner of the town of Terni.
Another poem tells of another dragon that yet lived near the village of Fornole, near Terni in the south of Umbria. Pope Saint Sylvester arrived in Umbria and freed the population of Fornole from the ferocity of the dragon, making him become mild. In gratitude, the population built, in the XIII century, a little church dedicated to the Saint on the top of the mountain, near the dragon's lair. In the apse of the church there is a fresco representing the iconography of the Saint.
The four cardinal directions). Although Dragon Kings appear in their true forms as dragons, they have the ability to shapeshift into human form. The Dragon Kings live in crystal palaces, guarded by shrimp soldiers and crab generals.
Besides ruling over the aquatic life, the Dragon Kings also manipulate clouds and rain. When enraged, they can flood cities. According to The Short Stories on the Tang People (Tangren Chuanqi), the Qian Tang Dragon King did just that when he found out his niece had been abused by her husband.
The Dragon King of the Eastern Sea (Donghai) is said to have the largest territory.
Dragon Kings appeared commonly in literature. Detailed descriptions were given of the finery of their crystal palaces. In the Chinese classical novel , a Dragon King is one of the main characters in the tenth chapter.
According to mysticism and mythology, elementals are creatures (usually a spirit) composed of or attuned to air, earth, fire and water. The elements balance each other out through opposites: water quenches fire, fire boils water, earth contains air, air corodes earth. Water spirits are called undines, earth spirits gnomes, air spirits sylphs, and fire spirits salamanders.
Ghoul comes from way back to Medivel Arabic ghul, which meant a kind of demon. Specifically a kind of demon that lived in graveyards and was the offspring of Iblis, a jinn roughly corresponding to Satan (in fact, later know as al-Shaitan). Like other demons, Iblis gets jonesing for human women once in a while - well, all the time - and every time he scores, that's one more ghul in the world. Iblis was allowed to roam the earth, unlike his Judeo-Christian counterpart, because Allah wanted to test people by allowing someone to put wicked ideas into their heads.
But "demon" doesn't mean the same thing in this context as it does when we're talking about Christian demonology, either. Ghul also means a kind of desert-dwelling shapeshifter, often assuming the guise of a hyena, that lures travelers off paths so it can eat them. It's especially fond of children and will dig up graves to eat the dead.
The exhuming and burning of a corpse has been one of the standard revenant-disposal measures as long as there have been revenants. Variations spring up but fire is a standby.
Grimlocks are blind, but their exceptional senses of smell and hearing allow them to notice foes nearby. As a result, they usually shun ranged weapons and rush to the attack, brandishing their stone battleaxes.
Grimlocks can sense all foes within 40 feet as a sighted creature would. Beyond that range, they treat all targets as having total concealment.
Grimlocks are susceptible to sound- and scent-based attacks, however, and are affected normally by loud noises and sonic spells (such as ghost sound or silence) and overpowering odors (such as stinking cloud or incense-heavy air). Negating a grimlock’s sense of smell or hearing reduces this ability to normal Blind-Fight (as the feat). If both these senses are negated, a grimlock is effectively blinded.
Grimlocks are immune to gaze attacks, visual effects, illusions, and other attack forms that rely on sight.
*A grimlock’s dull gray skin helps it hide in its native terrain, conferring a +10 racial bonus on Hide checks when in mountains or underground.
Thanks to Paula!
A demonic dog of hell, usually referring to Cerberus, the dog of Hades from Greek Mythology. The ghostly hounds are said to haunt parts of teh United Kingdom and many names are given to the apparitions: Black Shuck of East Anglia, Moddey Dhoo of the Isle of Man, Gwyllgi of Wales. Hellhounds are a common creature in fantasy fiction, such as in Arthur Conan Doyle's "The Hound of the Baskersville" and Frank Bellknap Long's "The Hounds of Tinadalos." They are also a common enemy in role-playing and video games, including "Dungeons & Dragons", "Shadowrun", RuneScape", "Adventure Quest" and the "Zork" series.
An Arabic demon or spirit, created by Allah from smokeless fire. Jinn were created before humans and can be resentful at what they see as the usurption of the world by humans. They are generally invisible, but they can manifest themselves in a variety of forms and can always see things that are normally visible. Jinns occupy a place in Islam unlike demons in Christianity because the Koran is preached to them as well as humans. Still, they are often feared. A kind of jinn known as a marid had control over water, with all of the power and fickleness that might imply.
A being that cannot be described as human, the phantom attacker harasses its victims, taking away their sense of security. The victims describe these enounters as traumatic, because what assaulted them was strange, unusual and obviously not human. Those who have been attacked live with a horrifying fear that cannot be explaine. Famous phantom attackers include the Mothman, Shadow People, the Springheeled Jack, and the Chupacabra.
Also known as the "Mad Gasser", this phantom attacker sprayed paralyzing adn nauseating gasses in people's homes during the night. The victims were unable to move for approximately forty minutes and extremely nauseaous. The gasser was described as a man, or a woman dressed like a man, wearing all black and sprayed gas that smelled like flowers. The police received over a dozen calls in response to this attacker and at least twenty-nine victims, who were prodominately female. The phantom gasser was never found.
A mischievous ghost, especially one that makes mysterious noises.
Poltergeist in Amherst - In 1878, Esther Teed (Her last name is Teed in the "Ghosts and Spirits" book) of Amherst, Nova Scotia was victimized in one of the most frightening haunting cases in Canadian history. The poltergeist, which dubbed himself "Bob" in written messages on walls, tormented not only nineteen-year-old Esther, but also anyone who tried to help her, including her entire family.
The spirit first made it's presence known by frightening and then sickening Esther; at one point the girl's body swelled to nearly double it's normal size. The family called in doctors and clergy to help, but the haunting escalated, terrifying the family with deafening noises, horrifying threats, unspeakable violence, and spontaneous fire-starting. As word of these occurences spread, curious people began gathering at the Teed house.
Eventually, the Teed's landlord, distressed at the damage that was occuring, requested that Esther leave the property. The house immediately returned to normal; Esther, however, was harassed by the spirit one last time, when it followed her into a barn and set in afire. Esther was arrested and sentenced to four months in jail, but appeals from friends who knew her history led to her release. Soon after, Esther married and the spirit mysteriously ceased his visitations.
A term used to describe a supposed spirit or ghost that manifests itself by moving and influencing inanimate objects. Reports of poltergeist activity typically feature heavily on raps, bumps, thumps, knocks, footsteps and bed-shaking, all without a discernible point of origin or physical reason for occurrence. Many accounts also detail objects being thrown about the room, furniture being moved, and even people being levitated. Though rare, a few reported poltergeists have been purported to speak, including The Bell Witch in 1817 and Gef the Talking Mongoose in 1931.
The phoenix is a mythical sacred firebird that originated in ancient Phoenician mythology (according to Sanchuniathon),Chinese mythology, Egyptian religion and later Greek mythology.
A phoenix is a mythical bird with a colorful plumage and a tail of gold and scarlet (or purple, blue, and green according to some legends). It has a 500 to 1,000 year life-cycle, near the end of which it builds itself a nest of twigs that then ignites; both nest and bird burn fiercely and are reduced to ashes, from which a new, young phoenix or phoenix egg arises, reborn anew to live again. The new phoenix is destined to live as long as its old self. In some stories, the new phoenix embalms the ashes of its old self in an egg made of myrrh and deposits it in the Egyptian city of Heliopolis (sun city in Greek). It is said that the bird's cry is that of a beautiful song. In very few stories they are able to change into humans.
The Roman poet Ovid wrote the following about the phoenix:
The simurgh or simorgh (Phoenix) originates in Persian mythology (Parthian Empire 247 B.C.). It has enjoyed a variety of incarnations ranging from being fully birdlike to having the head of a dog and suckling its young. Typically, it is considered benevolent, but some tales suggest that man is not always safe around the simurgh. Further, many tales share many elements with those of the phoenix.
Flavius Philostratus (c. AD 170), who wrote the biography Life of Apollonius of Tyana, refers to the phoenix as a bird living in India, but sometimes migrating to Egypt every five hundred years. His account is clearly inspired by Garuda, the bird of the Hindu god Vishnu. He considered the bird as an emanation of sunlight, being in appearance and size much like an eagle. His contemporary Lactantius is probably the author who wrote the longest poem on the famous bird. Although descriptions (and life-span) vary, the Egyptian phoenix (Bennu bird) became popular in early Catholic art, literature and Catholic symbolism, as a symbol of Christ representing his resurrection, immortality, and life-after-death. One of the Early Catholic Church Fathers, Clement, related the following regarding the Phoenix in chapter 25 of The First Epistle of Clement:
Michael W. Holmes points out that early Christian writers justified their use of this myth because the word appears in Psalm 92:12 [LXX Psalm 91:13], but in that passage it actually refers to a palm tree, not a mythological bird. However, it was the flourishing of Christian Hebraist interpretations of Job 29:18 that brought the Joban phoenix to life for Christian readers of the seventeenth century. At the heart of these interpretations is the proliferation of richly complementary meanings that turn upon three translations of the word chol – as phoenix, palm tree, or sand – in Job 29:18.
In a critical edition of I Clement, Lake noted that "the same story, with variations, is found in Herodotus (ii. 73), Pliny (Nat. Hist. x.2), etc." Originally, the phoenix was identified by the Egyptians as a stork or heron-like bird called a benu, known from theBook of the Dead and other Egyptian texts as one of the sacred symbols of worship at Heliopolis, closely associated with the rising sun and the Egyptian sun-god Ra. The Greeks identified it with their own word phoenix, meaning the color purple-red or crimson (cf. Phoenicia). They and the Romans subsequently pictured the bird more like a peacock or an eagle. According to the Greeks the phoenix lived in Phoenicia next to a well. At dawn, it bathed in the water of the well, and the Greek sun-god Helios stopped his chariot (the sun) in order to listen to its song. Featured in the painting Heracles Strangles Snakes (House of the Vettii, Pompeii Italy) as Zeus, the king of the gods.
One inspiration that has been suggested for the Egyptian phoenix is the flamingo of East Africa. This bright pink or white bird nests on salt flats that are too hot for its eggs or chicks to survive; it builds a mound several inches tall and large enough to support its egg, which it lays in that marginally cooler location. The convection currents around these mounds resembles the turbulence of a flame. In zoology, flamingos are part of the family Phoenicopteridae, from the generic name Phoenicopterus or "phoenix-winged."
"Phoenix" is also the English-language name given to the most important bird in Chinese mythology, the fenghuang, with its own set of characteristics and symbolic meanings.
A demon or unrightous spirit in Hinduism that feeds on human flesh. They are shapechangers and magicians, and often appear in the forms of humans, dogs, and large birds. They can make themselves invisible and can not enter a home without being invited. According ot the Ramayana, an ancient Sanskrit epic, they were created from Brahma's, the Hindu God of Creation, foot. Many Rakshasa were particularly wicked humans in previous incarnations and are known to disturb sacrifices, desecrate graves, and possess human beings. Translated to English, Rakshasa means injurer.
An Irish sort of boogeyman said to live by the pipes under the sink, and to drown naughty children and reward the good. He is covered all over with matted hair, has pale flat eyes, lives in dark cupboards, and is rumored to have a crouching form like a rock.
Reapers aren't exactly demons, they don't take sides in the good-versus-evil thing, they're just death given form, and they operate as what's called a psychopomp.
Numerous cultures all over the world believe in some version of a Skinwalker, which is closely related to beliefs about werewolves an other "were" creatures. The best documented Skinwalker beliefs are those of the Navajo yenaldooshi. The yenaldooshi are evil human beings who have gained supernatural power by murdering a close relative. The creature travels by night, spreading misery and desecrating holy things. He or she is also said to have the power to assume the form of a coyote or other animal. The yenaldooshi's power comes from it's use of corpse powder, which is made from human cadavers. Touching the corpse powder curses a person with sickness or death. This is an inversion pollen usage, which Navajo's sprinkle to produce blessings. In Norse folklore, a Skinwalker is a person who can travel in the shape of an animal or take on certain characteristics of an animal. The most well-known example is a warrior who takes on the strength and stamina of a bear, called "bear shirt" or berserker.
Shapeshifting, also known as transformation or transmogrification, is a change in the form or shape of a person, especially a change from human form to animal form or a change in appearance from one person to another.
The best way to get rid of these suckers is to kill em with silver.
According to Albanian folklore, a Shtriga was a vampire-like witch who was said to suck the blood of infant children while they slept, and then turn into a flying insect.
An urban legend originating in England during the 1800's, the Spring Heeled Jack was said to have clawed hands and eyes of fire. His legendary status gained popularity between 1850 adn 1880 as people became fascinated with his abilities to perform daring leaps and breath blue and white flames of fire.
A folk tale with many variations. The most famous is a Mexican story about La Llorona - The Sobbing Woman.
The story takes place long ago when a beautiful Indian princess, Dona Luisa de Loveros, fell in love with a handsome Mexican nobleman named Don Nuna de Montesclaros. The princess loved the nobleman deeply and had two children by him, but Montesclaros refused to marry her. When he finally deserted her and married another woman, Dona Luisa went mad with rage and stabbed her two children. Authorities found her wandering the street, sobbing, her clothes covered in blood. She was charged with infanticide and sent to the gallows. Ever since, it is said, the ghost of La Llorona walks the country at night in her bloody dress, crying out for her murdered children. If she finds any child, she's likely to carry it away with her to the nether regions, where her own spirit dwells.
There's another version, recorded outside Dallas. In this one, a driver (almost always at night) picks up a hitchhiker, who then either disappears as the car passes a graveyard or gives an address that turns out to be a long-abandoned house. The story always goes there's the pretty girl in the white evening dress, soaking wet, who flags down a ride and the disappears before the car gets to the address she gives. There's the same girl, showing up on the porches of lakeside houses adking to use the phone and then vanishing, leaving only a puddle of water and the fading echoes of her screams.
If you need to get rid of her, here's what you do. TAKE HER HOME! Lol.
According to folklore, the Flying Dutchman is a ghost ship that must travel through the ocean forever and can never go back to home, or to port. Often spotted from far away, the Flying Dutchman glows with a pale, ghostly type of light. If hailed by another ship, her crew will often try to send messages to land to reach the deceased.
Demigod-like immortal creatures that thrive on creating mischeif and mayhem. With the power to make objects materialize out of thin air, the Trickster accomplished its destructive feats via unusual and often humerous means, intent to humble the self-important. The trickster's metabolism is such that it craves treats and consumes calories voraciously. To kill a Trickster one must obtain a stake dropped in the blood of its victim and plunge it into the creature's heart. Famous Tricksters include Loki of Scandinavian myth and Anansi of West Africa.
A physical materialization of a thought, resulting in the creation of a being or object.
Hook Man Legend - An Urban Legend that began circulating widely in the 1950's. There are many variations, but the basic story is the same. It begins when a teenage boy takes his unsuspecting date out to Lovers' Lane for a make-out session. While there, they hear a report of a murderer who has escaped from a nearby insane asylum; the newscaster says everyone should be on the look out for this crazy man, who has a hook in place of his right hand. The girl becomes frightened--especially when the couple hears a strange scratching sound coming from outside the car--but her date insists everything is fine and tries to continue making out. The girl resists, and eventually the boy relents and drives her home. When they arrive back at the girl's house, the girl exits the car and begins screaming hysterically. When her date exits the car as well, he sees a bloody detached hook embedded in the roof of the car--and realizes that the Hook Man would have scratched through to the interior of the car had they stayed at Lover's Lane any longer.
Destroy the original hook, if you can find it.
Aren't You Glad You Didn't Turn On The Lights? - A variation on the Hook Man Legend. It concerns two roommates, usually girls. When one comes home late, she finds all the lights are out and assumes her roommate is already asleep. The girl gets ready for bed without turning on the lights. The next morning, when she wakes up, the girl is horrified to discover that her roommate has been viciously slaughtered--and written above her body, in her own blood, are the words "Aren't you glad you didn't turn on the lights?"
Bloody Mary Legend - An urban legend that says that anyone who chants the words "Bloody Mary" three times in front of a mirror will summon a vengeful spirit. This spirit has been reported to do a variety of things to the person who summons her, including killing the person, scratching their eyes out, driving them mad or pulling them into the mirror with the spirit - - generally rfrerred to as the spirit of a woman or even a witch. This is an old legend, but in 1978 a folklorist named Janet Langlois published an essay on Bloody Mary, which led to the tale becoming a popular slumber party ritual done by girls as well as boys. No one knows the origins of the Bloody Mary legend; over the years, she has been rumored to be anything from a witch that was killed for practicing witchcraft to a modern-day woman killed in a car crash, depending on what part of the country you live in.
Just don't say it.
Mirror Folklore - There is a great deal of folklore associated with mirrors, including the belief that the soul projects out of the body and into mirrors in the form of reflection. This belief underlies the most widely known mirror superstition: that breaking a mirror brings seven years of bad luck. Many cultures believe that breaking a mirror also breaks the soul of the one who broke it. The soul, angered at being hurt, exacts seven years of bad luck in payment for such carelessness. The Romans attributed the bad luck to their belief that life renews itself every seven years. To break a mirror meant breaking one's health, and this could not be remedied for seven years. In some cultures, breaking a mirror was thought to presage a death in the family. This association of mirrors with death is common and stems from the belief that the souls can become trapped in the mirror. For this reason, children were often not allowed to look in a mirror until they were at least one year old. Mirrors were covered during sleep and illness so that the soul, in its wanderings, would not become trapped and unable to return to the body. After a death, mirrors were also covered to prevent the soul of the newly departed from becoming caught in the mirror, delaying its journey to the afterlife.
Folkloric creatures, thought to be the re-animated corpses of human beings and said to live on human or animal blood. They often have unnatural powers and the ability to physically transform.
In Norse Mythology, the Vanir are originally a group of wild nature and fertility gods, the sworn enemies of the warrior gods of Aesir. They were considered to be the bringers of health, youth, fertility, luck and wealth, and masters of magic, also known for protection and prosperity, and keeping the local settlements safe from harm. Some villages built effigies of the Vanir in their fields, while other villages practiced human sacrifices consisting of one male and one female.
Water Wraith - The idea of water wraiths originated in Scotland. A wraith is thought to be an apparition--a spector, a vision, an unreal image--and a Water Wraith is a spirit thought to preside over the waters. They supposedly take the form of skinny, old women with scowling features who dress in green. The Water Wraiths try to lure unsuspecting travelers to their death by drowning them.
Drowned Boy In Hawaii - An urban legend about a young boy who was murdered by drowning in a pond on the Big island of Hawaii. According to the legend, the boy's angry and violent spirit haunted the pond, dragging down swimmers and drowning them. No one could stop the murders from occurring; the Drowned Boy continuted to grab and drown people until he finally got the person that murdered him.
A creature that was once human but was transformed into an immortal evil spirit when it took up the practice of cannibalism. Wedigoes are cursed to wander the land, eternally seeking to fulfill their voracious appetite for human flesh. Various Native American tribes tell slightly different stories about this creature and refer to it by different names--Wendigo, Witigo, Witiko and Wee-Tee-Go--but each version roughly translates to mean "the evil spirit that devours mankin". Around 1860, a German explorer translated Wedigo as "cannibal". Wendigoes are believed to live in the northern woods of Minnesota and in the north central regions of Canada. Kenora, Canada, has been given the title of "Wendigo Capital Of The World" by many. Sightings of the creature in this area have continued well into the new millenium. Wendigoes are generally rumoured to be gigantic spirits, over fifteen feet tall, lanky and with glowing eyes, long yellowed fangs, terrible claws and overly long tongues. Sometimes they are said to have a sallow, yellowish skin; other times they are described as being matted with hair. The Wendigo's full powers have never been recorded. The creature excels at stealth and is a near-perfect hunter, knowing and using every inch of it's territory--caves, hills, trees and bushes. Some stories posit that Wendigoes can control the weather through the use of dark magic. So how do you kill em? Part of the final transformation from human to Wendigo is the heart changing into pure ice. Shatter that icy heart with a blade of iron or silver. The only way to be sure is to cut it's body apart. And it never hurts to burn em either.
The Wendigo (also Windigo, Weendigo, Windago, Windiga, Witiko, Wihtikow, and numerous other variants) is a appearing in the mythology of the Algonquian people. It is a malevolent cannibalistic spirit into which humans could transform, or which could possess humans. Those who indulged in cannibalism were at particular risk, and the legend appears to have reinforced this practice as taboo.
Wendigo psychosis is a culture-bound disorder which involves an intense craving for human flesh and the fear that one will turn into a cannibal. This once occurred frequently among Algonquian Native cultures, though has declined with the Native American urbanization.
Recently the Wendigo has also become a horror entity of contemporary literature and film, much like the vampire, werewolf, or zombie, although these fictional depictions often bear little resemblance to the original entity.
The Wendigo is part of the traditional belief systems of various Algonquian-speaking tribes in the northern United States and Canada, most notably the Ojibwa/Saulteaux, the Cree, and the Innu/Naskapi/Montagnais. Though descriptions varied somewhat, common to all these cultures was the conception of Wendigos as malevolent, cannibalistic, supernatural beings(manitous) of great spiritual power. They were strongly associated with the Winter, the North, and coldness, as well as with famine and starvation. Basil Johnston, an Ojibwa teacher and scholar from Ontario, gives one description of how Wendigos were viewed:
All cultures in which the Wendigo myth appeared shared the belief that human beings could turn into Wendigos if they ever resorted to cannibalism or, alternately, become possessed by the demonic spirit of a Wendigo, often in a dream. Once transformed, a person would become violent and obsessed with eating human flesh. The most frequent cause of transformation into a Wendigo was if a person had resorted to cannibalism, consuming the body of another human in order to keep from starving to death during a time of extreme hardship or famine.
Among northern Algonquian cultures, cannibalism, even to save one's own life, was viewed as a serious taboo; the proper response to famine was suicide or resignation to death. On one level, the Wendigo myth thus worked as a deterrent and a warning against resorting to cannibalism; those who did would become Wendigo monsters themselves.
Among the Assiniboine, the Cree and the Ojibwa, a satirical ceremonial dance was originally performed during times of famine to reinforce the seriousness of the Wendigo taboo. The ceremonial dance, known as a wiindigookaanzhimowin in Ojibwe and today performed as part of the last day activities of the Sun dance, involves wearing a mask and dancing about the drum backwards. The last known Wendigo Ceremony conducted in the United States was at of Star Island of Cass Lake, located within the Leech Lake Indian Reservation in northern Minnesota.
The term "Wendigo psychosis" (also spelled many other ways, including "Windigo psychosis" and "Witiko psychosis") refers to a condition in which sufferers developed an insatiable desire to eat human flesh even when other food sources were readily available, often as a result of prior famine cannibalism; Wendigo psychosis is identified by Western psychologists as a culture-bound syndrome, though members of the aboriginal communities in which it existed believed cases literally involved individuals turning into Wendigos. Such individuals generally recognized these symptoms as meaning that they were turning into Wendigos, and often requested to be executed before they could harm others. The most common response when someone began suffering from Wendigo psychosis was curing attempts by traditional native healers or Western doctors. In the unusual cases when these attempts failed, and the Wendigo began either to threaten those around them or to act violently or anti-socially, they were then generally executed. Cases of Wendigo psychosis, though real, were relatively rare, and it was even rarer for them to actually culminate in the execution of the sufferer.
One of the more famous cases of Wendigo psychosis involved a Plains Cree trapper from Alberta, named Swift Runner. During the winter of 1878, Swift Runner and his family were starving, and his eldest son died. Twenty-five miles away from emergency food supplies at a Hudson's Bay Company post, Swift Runner butchered and ate his wife and five remaining children. Given that he resorted to cannibalism so near to food supplies, and that he killed and consumed the remains of all those present, it was revealed that Swift Runner's was not a case of pure cannibalism as a last resort to avoid starvation, but rather of a man suffering from Wendigo psychosis. He eventually confessed and was executed by authorities at Fort Saskatchewan. Another well-known case involving Wendigo psychosis was that of , an Oji-Cree chief and shaman known for his powers at defeating Wendigos. In some cases this entailed euthanizing people suffering from Wendigo psychosis; as a result, in 1907, Fiddler and his brother Joseph were arrested by the Canadian authorities for murder. Jack committed suicide, but Joseph was tried and put to death.
Fascination with Wendigo psychosis among Western ethnographers, psychologists, and anthropologists led to a hotly debated controversy in the 1980s over the historicity of this phenomenon. Some researchers argued that Wendigo psychosis was essentially a fabrication, the result of naïve anthropologists taking stories related to them at face value. Others, however, pointed to a number of credible eyewitness accounts, both by Algonquians and by Westerners, as proof that Wendigo psychosis was a factual historical phenomenon.
The frequency of Wendigo psychosis cases decreased sharply in the 20th century as boreal Algonquian people came in to greater and greater contact with Western ideologies and more sedentary, less rural lifestyles. While there is substantive evidence to suggest that Wendigo psychosis did exist, a number of questions concerning the condition remain unanswered.
For more info on Wendigoes, please visit this site:
They say if you shatter their icy heart with a blade of iron or silver, you kill it. They also say you can tear it apart and as a last resort, torch it.
In Mythology, werewolves are entities that are human but shape shift into wolf form during certain lunar timeframes. This phenomenon is also referred to as lycanthropy, from the Greek lykoi, "wolf" and anthropos, "man." The change from man to wolf is held to be possible by witchcraft or magic, and can be voluntary or forced by certain cycles of the moon and certain sounds (such as howling). In some folklore, werewolves are immune from aging and most physical diseases. They can be killed by any wound that destroys the heart or the brain or by any form of death that causes brain or heart damage (such as hanging or other oxygen-deprivation methods).
Emerging from Greek Mythology, the werewolf is a person who changes into a wolf by means of magic or by being placed under a curse. Most of the time, this transformation is brought on by the appearance of a full moon. It is believed that the only way to kill a werewolf is with a silver bullet.
A person who shapeshifts into a wolf or wolflike creature, either by using magic, or after being placed under a curse. The idea of transforming during the appearance of the full moon was an idea that was picked up by fiction writers. In popular culture, a werewolf can be killed if shot by a silver bullet, although this was not a feature of the folk legends. The name most likely derives from Old English *wer* and *wulf*. The first part *wer*, translates as "man." The second half, *wulf*, is the ancestor of "wolf." An alternative derivation of the word has the first part coming from Old English *weri* (to wear), making the full form in this case, *wearer of wolf skin*. Historical legends describe a wide variety of methods for becoming a werewolf, such as the removal of clothing and putting on a belt made of wolfskin, rubbing the body with a magic salve, drinking water out of the footprint of the animal in question, and drinking from certain enchanted streams. According to Russian lore, a child born on December 24th becomes a werewolf. Folklore and literature also depict that a werewolf can be spawned from two werewolf parents. Becoming a werewolf by being bitten by another werewolf is common in modern fiction, but rare in legend, in which werewolf attacks seldom left the victim alive long enough to transform.
Lyncanthropy: The ability or power of a human to transform into a wolf. There is also a mental illness called lycanthropy in which a patient believes he or she is, or has transformed into, an animal and behaves accordingly.
A scottish word, first used in English in 1513. A wraith is an apparition, vision, or double of another living person. It's appearance is commonly seen as an omen that the person being doubled is about to die.
An undead person commonly found in the spiritual belief system of voodoo. Zombies are humans who have had their soul stolen by supernatural means and are forced to work for their "Zombie Master". Another more morbid version, that are often portrayed in horror films, depict Zombies as cannibalistic beings.
Zombies: Fact or Fiction?
Definition: A Zombie is a dead person that is brought back to life through a curse (voodoo, necromancy) or a mutation and has recovered some vital functions like movement. They are near-mindless, possessing little reasoning power, though many can perform "remembered behaviors" from their mortal existence. Zombies are omnipresent in the folklore of Haiti, where they are created by voodoo, an african type of black witchcraft. More recently, Zombies films have exposed new theories according to which a man-made virus or genetical experiments are held responsible for the creation of zombies. Such films put a strong emphasis on flesh and blood: rotting bodies and their attendent maggots, as well as the still-warm gore resulting from savage, often cannibalistic attacks upon the living.
Description: Some zombies have the appearance of the living but thier lack of free will and souls give them the appearance of mechanical robots. Other display visible signs of desiccation, decay and emaciation on their face and body. They have blank, expressionless faces that become more animated when they get hungry and engage in a feeding frenzy. They are incapable of speech, but often tend to make moaning and guttural sounds. They are normally encountered wearing whatever clothing they wore in their human life, prior to reanimation.
Voodoo Zombie: Haitian Penal Code: Article 249. "It shall also be qualified as attempted murder the employment which may be made against any person of substances which, without causing actual death, produce a lethargic coma more or less prolonged. If, after the person had been buried, the act shall be considered murder no matter what result follows."
The methods of creating and controlling zombies vary among bokors. Some bokors use blood and hair from their victims in conjunction with voodoo dolls to zombify their victims. Others methods of zombification involve a specially prepared concoction of mystical herbs, in addition to human and animal parts (sometimes called "coup padre"). Ingestion, injection, or even a blow dart may be used to administer the potion variety. When these substances come into contact with teh victim's skin, bloodstream or mucous membranse, the victim is rendered immobile within minutes, succumbing to a comatose-like state resembling death. The victim rretains full awareness as he is taken to the hospital, then perhaps to the morgue and finally buried in a grave. The bokor then performs an ancient voodoo rite; taking possession of the victim's soul, and replacing it with teh loa that he or she controls. The victim's "trapped" soul is usually placed within a small clay jar or some other unremarkable container. The container is wrapped in a fragment of the victim's clothing, a piece of jewelery, or some other personal possession owned by the victim in life, and then hidden in a place of secrecy known only to the bokor. The bokor raises the victim after a day or two and administers a hallucinogenic concoction, called the "zombie's cucumber," that revives the victim. Once the zombie has been revived, it has no power of speech, it's past human personality is entirely absent, and the memory is gone. Zombies are thus easy to control and are used by bokors as slaves for farm labor and construction work.
One case in 1918 involved a voodoo priest named Ti Joseph who ran a gang of laborers for the American Sugar Corporation, he took the money they received and fed the workers only unsalted porridge. Indeed, giving a zombie salt is supposed to restore it's personality, and send it back to it's grave and out of the bokor's influence. There are a significant number of researchers who believe zombification to be an actual practice, achieved not through magic and ritual, but rather through certain powerful drugs. These drugs make a person seem dead through extensive intoxication and slowing of the bodily functions. When they are revived, they are so brain-damaged that they cannot remember who they were or who their family was. Thus, they can be controlled by the bokor. The active ingredient that causes this "death-in-life" affect is known as tetrodotoxin, although little is known about this drug. Other substances from various toxic animals and plants, including the gland secretions of the bouga toad, millipedes and tarantulas, the skins of poisonous tree frogs, seeds and leaves from posionous plants are also mentioned.
Hollywood Zombie, Revenge From The Past: Visions of the walking dead as instruments of ghostly vengeance date from ancient times. Also known as corporeal ghost, they are not really zombie as they usually display a strong personality and rememberance of the past. Their vengeance is usually restricted to those who have violated their sleep or caused their unfair death. The influence of Romero's living dead lies mainly in the type of violence they commit. These days the general audience of these films expects zombies that mutilate their victims horribly and their vengeance is more likely to have a degree of cruelty which was not present in early days.
Strengths: Zombies are impervious to pain and require no air to breathe. They are thus immune to drugs, poisons, gases, extremes of temperature and pressure, high voltage electricity, suffocation, and drowning. While not invulnerable to physical injury, zombies can suffer great damage to their bodies (including dismemberment) without being adversely affected. Dismembering the legs will render the zombie immobile, but the creature will still continue to subsist. Likewise, decapitation will incapacitate the body, but the head will still "live". Zombies don't possess any superhuman strength, nor do they have night vision, a characteristic usually common to undead monsters.
Weaknesses: The zombie's strength level is at normal human-levels, but they are considerably slower that average humans, possessing poor agility and coordination. Most zombies have difficulty with simple mechanical objects and obstacles such as doorknobs, latches, stairs, and fences. When confronted individually, zombies appear rather weak, but the creature's true threat is revealed when they are encountered in huge numbers. These relentless legions of tireless, flesh-eating machines will assault you on every side until you fall and there comes the lunch!
There are a few methods for taking out zombies.
Cut the head off and put it by the feet.
Burn the body.
Cut out and burn the heart.
Cut off the head and remove the heart. What you do with the heart is still up for debate. You could put it in a jar and use it on the mantle for all I care.
Drive a stake through the head/mouth/heart/stomach. Wood of the stake needs to be hawthorn, oak or ash. A certain group of gypsies will swear by Wild Rose Tree. Silver stakes are a last resort.
, sometimes called the Leeds Devil, is a or cryptid said to inhabit the in southern New Jersey. The creature is often described as a flying biped with hooves, but there are many variations. The Jersey Devil has worked its way into the pop culture of the area, even lending its name to New Jersey's team in the National Hockey League.
North American mythology and folklore
The Jersey Devil, sometimes called the Leeds Devil, is a legendary creature or cryptid said to inhabit the Pine Barrens in southern New Jersey. The creature is often described as a flying biped with hooves, but there are many variations. The Jersey Devil has worked its way into the pop culture of the area, even lending its name to New Jersey's team in the National Hockey League.
Legends and reported encounters
Most accounts of the Jersey Devil legend attribute the creature to a "Mother Leeds", a supposed witch of whom it is said that after giving birth to her 12th child, stated that if she had another, it would be the Devil. According to the story, her wish was granted, and upon its birth, her grotesque offspring flew off into the surrounding pines.
According to legend, while visiting the Hanover Mill Works to inspect his cannonballs being forged, Commodore Stephen Decatur sighted a flying creature flapping its wings and fired a cannonball directly upon it to no effect. Joseph Bonaparte, eldest brother of Emperor Napoleon, is also said to have witnessed the Jersey Devil while hunting on his Bordentown, New Jersey estate around 1820. Throughout the 1800s, the Jersey Devil was blamed for livestock killings, strange tracks, and reported sounds. In the early 1900s, a number of people in and neighboring states claimed to witness the Jersey Devil or see its tracks. Claims of a corpse matching the Jersey Devil's description arose in 1957. In 1960, the merchants around Camden offered a $10,000 reward for the capture of the Jersey Devil, even offering to build a private zoo to house the creature if captured.
Bigfoot, also known as Sasquatch, is an alleged ape-like creature purportedly inhabiting forests, mainly in the Pacific Northwest region of North America. Bigfoot is usually described as a large, hairy, bipedal humanoid. The scientific community considers Bigfoot to be a combination of folklore, misidentification, and hoaxes, rather than a real creature. In general, mainstream scientific consensus does not support the posited existence of megafauna cryptids such as Bigfoot, because of the improbably large numbers necessary to maintain a breeding population, and because climate and food supply issues would make such purported creatures' survival in reported habitats unlikely. Despite these facts, Bigfoot is one of the more famous examples of a cryptid within cryptozoology.
Prominent reported sightings
Proposed explanations for sightings
North American mythology and folklore
Bigfoot, also known as Sasquatch, is an alleged ape-like creature purportedly inhabiting forests, mainly in the Pacific Northwest region of North America. Bigfoot is usually described as a large, hairy, bipedal humanoid.
The scientific community considers Bigfoot to be a combination of folklore, misidentification, and hoaxes, rather than a real creature. In general, mainstream scientific consensus does not support the posited existence of megafauna cryptids such as Bigfoot, because of the improbably large numbers necessary to maintain a breeding population, and because climate and food supply issues would make such purported creatures' survival in reported habitats unlikely. Despite these facts, Bigfoot is one of the more famous examples of a cryptid within cryptozoology.
Bigfoot is described in reports as a large ape-like creature, ranging between 6–10 feet (1.8–3.0 m) tall, weighing in excess of 500 pounds (230 kg), and covered in dark brown or dark reddish hair. Alleged witnesses have described large eyes, a pronounced brow ridge, and a large, low-set forehead; the top of the head has been described as rounded and crested, similar to the sagittal crest of the male gorilla. Bigfoot is commonly reported to have a strong, unpleasant smell by those who have claimed to have encountered it. The enormous footprints for which it is named have been as large as 24 inches (61 cm) long and 8 inches (20 cm) wide. While most casts have five toes–like all known apes–some casts of alleged Bigfoot tracks have had numbers ranging from two to six. Some have also contained claw marks, making it likely that a portion came from known animals such as bears, which have five toes and claws. Proponents have also claimed that Bigfoot is omnivorous and mainly nocturnal.
Wildmen stories are found among the indigenous population of the Pacific Northwest. The legends existed prior to a single name for the creature. They differed in their details both regionally and between families in the same community. Similar stories of wildmen are found on every continent except Antarctica. Ecologist Robert Michael Pyle argues that most cultures have human-like giants in their folk history: "We have this need for some larger-than-life creature."
Members of the Lummi tell tales about Ts'emekwes, the local version of Bigfoot. The stories are similar to each other in terms of the general descriptions of Ts'emekwes, but details about the creature's diet and activities differed between the stories of different families. Some regional versions contained more nefarious creatures. The stiyaha or kwi-kwiyai were a nocturnal race that children were told not to say the names of lest the monsters hear and come to carry off a person–sometimes to be killed. In 1847, Paul Kane reported stories by the native people about skoocooms: a race of cannibalistic wild men living on the peak of Mount St. Helens. The skoocooms appear to have been regarded as supernatural, rather than natural.
Less menacing versions such as the one recorded by Reverend Elkanah Walker exist. In 1840, Walker, a Protestant missionary, recorded stories of giants among the Native Americans living in Spokane, Washington. The Indians claimed that these giants lived on and around the peaks of nearby mountains and stole salmon from the fishermen's nets.
The local legends were combined together by J. W. Burns in a series of Canadian newspaper articles in the 1920s. Each language had its own name for the local version. Many names meant something along the lines of "wild man" or "hairy man" although other names described common actions it was said to perform (e.g. eating clams). Burns coined the term Sasquatch, which is from the Halkomelem sásq'ets and used it in his articles to describe a hypothetical single type of creature reflected in these various stories. Burns's articles popularized both the legend and its new name, making it well known in western Canada before it gained popularity in the United States.
In 1951, Eric Shipton had photographed what he described as a Yeti footprint. This photograph generated considerable attention and the story of the Yeti entered into popular consciousness. The notoriety of ape-men grew over the decade, culminating in 1958 when large footprints were found in Del Norte County, California, by bulldozer operator Gerald Crew. Sets of large tracks appeared multiple times around a road-construction site in Bluff Creek. After not being taken seriously about what he was seeing, Crew brought in his friend, Bob Titmus, to cast the prints in plaster. The story was published in the Humboldt Times along with a photo of Crew holding one of the casts. Locals had been calling the unseen track-maker "Big Foot" since the late summer, which Genzoli shortened to "Bigfoot" in his article. Bigfoot gained international attention when the story was picked up by the Associated Press. Following the death of Ray Wallace – a local logger – his family attributed the creation of the footprints to him. The wife of Scoop Beal, the editor of the Humboldt Standard, which later combined with the Humboldt Times, in which Genzoli's story had appeared, has stated that her husband was in on the hoax with Wallace.
The year 1958 was a watershed for not just the Bigfoot story itself but also the culture that surrounds it. The first Bigfoot hunters began following the discovery of footprints at Bluff Creek. Within a year, Tom Slick, who had funded searches for Yeti in the Himalayas earlier in the decade, organized searches for Bigfoot in the area around Bluff Creek.
As Bigfoot has become better known and a phenomenon in popular culture, sightings have spread throughout North America. In addition to the Pacific Northwest, the Great Lakes region and the Southeastern United States have had many reports of Bigfoot sightings.
Prominent reported sightings
About a third of all Bigfoot sightings are concentrated in the Pacific Northwest, with most of the remaining sightings spread throughout the rest of North America. Some Bigfoot advocates, such as cryptozoologist John Willison Green, have postulated that Bigfoot is a worldwide phenomenon. The most notable sightings include:
1924: Fred Beck claimed that he and four other miners were attacked one night in July 1924, by several "apemen" throwing rocks at their cabin in an area later called Ape Canyon. Beck claimed the miners shot and possibly killed at least one of the creatures, precipitating an attack on their cabin, during which the creatures bombarded the cabin with rocks and tried to break-in. The incident was widely reported at the time. Beck wrote a book about the event in 1967, in which he argued that the alleged creatures were mystical beings from another dimension, claiming that he had experienced psychic premonitions and visions his entire life of which the apemen were only one component. Speleologist William Halliday argued in 1983 that the story arose from an incident in which hikers from a nearby camp had thrown rocks into the canyon. There are also local rumors that pranksters harassed the men and planted faked footprints.
1941: Jeannie Chapman and her children claimed to have escaped their home when a large Sasquatch, allegedly 7.5 feet (2.3 m) tall, approached their residence in Ruby Creek, British Columbia.
1958: Bulldozer operator Jerry Crew took to a newspaper office a cast of one of the enormous footprints he and other workers had been seeing at an isolated work site at Bluff Creek, California. The crew was overseen by Wilbur L. Wallace, brother of Raymond L. Wallace. After Ray Wallace's death, his children came forward with a pair of 16-inch (41 cm) wooden feet, which they claimed their father had used to fake the Bigfoot tracks in 1958. Wallace is poorly regarded by many Bigfoot proponents. John Napier wrote, "I do not feel impressed with Mr. Wallace's story" regarding having over 15,000 feet (4,600 m) of film showing Bigfoot.
1967: Roger Patterson and Robert Gimlin reported that on October 20 they had captured a purported Sasquatch on film at Bluff Creek, California. This came to be known as the Patterson-Gimlin film, which is purported to be the best evidence of Bigfoot by many advocates. Many years later, Bob Heironimus, an acquaintance of Patterson's, claimed that he had worn an ape costume for the making of the film.
2007: On September 16 2007, hunter Rick Jacobs captured an image of a possible sasquatch using an automatically triggered camera attached to a tree. A spokesperson for the Pennsylvania Game Commission challenged the Bigfoot explanation, saying that it looked like "a bear with a severe case of mange." In 2008 scientists worked out the size of the Jacobs creature in an article written by Vanessa Woods that displayed the proportions were not similar to a bears. The sighting happened near the town of Ridgway, Pennsylvania, in the Allegheny National Forest.
Proposed explanations for sightings
Various types of creatures have been suggested to explain both the sightings and what type of creature Bigfoot would be if it existed. The scientific community typically attributes sightings to either hoaxes or misidentification of known animals and their tracks. While cryptozoologists generally explain Bigfoot as an unknown ape, some believers in Bigfoot attribute the phenomenon to UFOs or other paranormal causes. A minority of proponents of a natural explanation have attributed Bigfoot to animals that are not apes such as the giant ground sloth.
The reported size of Bigfoot approximates that of a bear standing on its hind legs, and bears have a high prevalence in regions said to be inhabited by Bigfoot; as such, they are likely candidates to explain some sightings. A recent example comes from a series of pictures taken in 2007, claimed by The Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization to show a juvenile Bigfoot, which the Pennsylvania Game Commission has said show a bear with mange. Conversely, some question if the Pennsylvania Game Commission have misidentified the image. The broadcast organization MSNBC feel the hunter's photo revived the lively Bigfoot debate. While Jeffrey Meldrum said the limb proportions of the suspected juvenile in question were not bear-like, stating he felt they were "more like a human." A tale presented in Theodore Roosevelt's 1892 book The Wilderness Hunter, describing an encounter between two hunters and a violent something, is sometimes presented by Bigfoot proponents as historical evidence of the creature's existence.
Even proponents of Bigfoot admit that many of the sightings are hoaxes or misidentified animals. Cryptozoologists Loren Coleman and Diane Stocking have estimated that as many as 70 to 80 percent of sightings are not real.
Bigfoot sightings or footprints are often demonstrably hoaxes. Author Jerome Clark argues that the "Jacko affair", involving an 1884 newspaper report of an apelike creature captured in British Columbia, was a hoax. Citing research by John Green, who found that several contemporary British Columbia newspapers regarded the alleged capture as very dubious, Clark notes that the Mainland Guardian of New Westminster, British Columbia, wrote, "Absurdity is written on the face of it."
On July 14, 2005, Tom Biscardi, a long-time Bigfoot enthusiast and CEO of Searching for Bigfoot Inc., appeared on the Coast to Coast AM paranormal radio show and announced that he was "98% sure that his group will be able to capture a Bigfoot which they have been tracking in the Happy Camp, California area." A month later, Biscardi announced on the same radio show that he had access to a captured Bigfoot and was arranging a pay-per-view event for people to see it. Biscardi appeared on Coast to Coast AM again a few days later to announce that there was no captive Bigfoot. Biscardi blamed an unnamed woman for misleading him, and the show's audience for being gullible.
On July 9, 2008, Rick Dyer and Matthew Whitton posted a video to YouTube claiming that they had discovered the body of a deceased Sasquatch in a forest in northern Georgia. Tom Biscardi was contacted to investigate. Dyer and Whitton received $50,000 from Searching for Bigfoot, Inc., as a good faith gesture. The story of the men's claims was covered by many major news networks, including BBC, CNN, ABC News, and Fox News. Soon after a press conference, the alleged Bigfoot body arrived in a block of ice in a freezer with the Searching for Bigfoot team. When the contents were thawed, it was discovered that the hair was not real, the head was hollow, and the feet were rubber. Dyer and Whitton subsequently admitted it was a hoax after being confronted by Steve Kulls, executive director of Squatchdetective.com.
Bigfoot proponents Grover Krantz and Geoffrey Bourne believe that Bigfoot could be a relict population of Gigantopithecus. Bourne contends that as most Gigantopithecus fossils are found in China, and as many species of animals migrated across the Bering land bridge, it is not unreasonable to assume that Gigantopithecus might have as well.
The Gigantopithecus hypothesis is generally considered entirely speculative. Gigantopithecus fossils are not found in the Americas. As the only recovered fossils are of mandibles and teeth, there is some uncertainty about Gigantopithecus's locomotion. Krantz has argued, based on his extrapolation of the shape of its mandible, that Gigantopithecus blacki could have been bipedal. However, the relevant part of mandible is not present in any fossils. The mainstream view is that Gigantopithecus was quadrupedal, and it has been argued that Gigantopithecus's enormous mass would have made it difficult for it to adopt a bipedal gait.
Matt Cartmill presents another problem with the Gigantopithecus hypothesis: "The trouble with this account is that Gigantopithecus was not a hominin and maybe not even a crown-group hominoid; yet the physical evidence implies that Bigfoot is an upright biped with buttocks and a long, stout, permanently adducted hallux. These are hominin autapomorphies, not found in other mammals or other bipeds. It seems unlikely that Gigantopithecus would have evolved these uniquely hominin traits in parallel."
Bernard G. Campbellin wrote: "That Gigantopithecus is in fact extinct has been questioned by those who believe it survives as the Yeti of the Himalayas and the Sasquatch of the north-west American coast. But the evidence for these creatures is not convincing."
A species of Paranthropus, such as Paranthropus robustus, with its crested skull and bipedal gait, was suggested by primatologist John Napier and anthropologist Gordon Strasenburg as a possible candidate for Bigfoot's identity, despite the fact that fossils of Paranthropus are found only in Africa.
Some Bigfoot proponents suggest Neanderthal or Homo erectus to be the creature, but no remains of either species are found in the New World.
A fairy is a type of mythological being or , a form of spirit, often described as metaphysical, supernatural or preternatural. resemble various beings of other mythologies, though even folklore that uses the term fairy offers many definitions. Sometimes the term describes any magical creature, including goblins or gnomes: at other times, the term only describes a specific.
Thunderbird is a term used in cryptozoology to describe large, bird-like creatures, generally identified with the Thunderbird of Native American tradition. Similar cryptids reported in the Old World are often called Rocs. Thunderbirds are regarded by a small number of researchers as having lizard features like the extinct pterosaurs such as . Although reports of Thunderbird sightings go back centuries, due to the lack of scientific evidence, the creature is generally regarded as a myth. This article deals with modern sightings of such a creature, reported as real, as opposed to mythological accounts, though believers in the phenomenon often use the Native American legends in attempts to support their claims.
In oral history
North American mythology and folklore
The Thunderbird is a legendary creature in North American indigenous peoples' history and culture. It's considered a "supernatural" bird of power and strength. It is especially important, and richly depicted, in the art, songs and oral histories of many Pacific Northwest Coast cultures, and is found in various forms among the peoples of the American Southwest and Great Plains. Thunderbirds were major components of the
The Thunderbird's name comes from the common belief that the beating of its enormous wings causes thunder and stirs the wind. The Lakota name for the Thunderbird is Waki'ya, a word formed from kiya', meaning "winged," and wakha', "sacred." The Kwakwaka'wakw have many names for the Thunderbird and the Nuu-chah-nulth (Nootka) called him Kw-Uhnx-Wa. The Ojibwa word for a thunderbird that is closely associated with thunder is animikii, while large thunderous birds are known as binesi.
Across many North America indigenous cultures, the Thunderbird carries many of the same characteristics. It is described as a large bird, capable of creating storms and thundering while it flies. Clouds are pulled together by its wingbeats, the sound of thunder made by its wings clapping, sheet lightning the light flashing from its eyes when it blinks, and individual lightning bolts made by the glowing snakes that it carries around with it. In masks, it is depicted as many-colored, with two curling horns, and, often, teeth within its beak. The
In oral history
Depending on the people telling the story, the Thunderbird is either a singular entity or a species. In both cases, it is intelligent, powerful, and wrathful. All agree that one should go out of one's way to keep from getting thunderbirds angry.
The singular Thunderbird (as the Nuu-chah-nulth thought of him) was said to reside on the top of a mountain, and was the servant of the Great Spirit. The Thunderbird only flew about to carry messages from one spirit to another. It was also told that the thunderbird controlled rainfall.
The plural thunderbirds (as the Kwakwaka'wakw and Cowichan tribes believed) could shapeshift into human form by tilting back their beaks like a mask, and by removing their feathers as if it were a feather-covered blanket. There are stories of thunderbirds in human form marrying into human families; some families may trace their lineage to such an event. Families of thunderbirds who kept to themselves but wore human form were said to have lived along the northern tip of Vancouver Island. The story goes that other tribes soon forgot the nature of one of these thunderbird families, and when one tribe tried to take them as slaves the thunderbirds put on their feather blankets and transformed to take vengeance upon their foolish captors.
The Sioux believed that in "old times" the Thunderbirds destroyed dangerous reptilian monsters called the Unktehila.
A famous story of the Thunderbird is " ." The Thunderbird mythology parallels tales of the Roc from around the Indian Ocean; as the roc, it is generally assumed to be based on real (though mythically exaggerated) species of birds, specifically the , which is very common on the Northwest Coast
Was this Another Close Range Encounter with a Thunderbird Near South Greensburg, Pennsylvania?
Written By: Stan Gordon
On the evening of August 26, 2010, about , there was a sighting of a monstrous bird in South Greensburg, PA. Just as it was getting dark, four people were sitting around in the yard having a barbecue and enjoying the beautiful weather when suddenly, their attention was drawn skyward by a sound like a “swish” or a “swoosh” or as one witness stated, “like air coming straight down.”
Several of the observers at almost the same time yelled out some exclamations including one man who said, “What the hell is that?” They were all startled to see a tremendously large bird that was flying over a tree in the yard about 30-40 feet overhead. The man who was doing the cooking turned and looked up to see the creature fly above him at a distance of about 40 feet away. As the bird passed the tree, it veered slightly to the right and went straight down the road ahead, maintaining its low level path.
When first observed, the massive wings of the creature were in an upward position and were beginning to drop slowly, almost as if they were rolling to the bottom. The swoosh sound could be heard when the wings were moving. The powerful bird had flown about 125 yards down the road, at which time the wings were coming back up. The creature was observed as it continued to move steadily down the road, passing just above the roof top of a house with its wings flapping slowly and steadily about 3-4 time until it reached a group of trees about ¼ mile away, where it was lost from sight. It took about 20 seconds to go the ¼ mile distance.
I interviewed two of the witnesses at the scene and they were able to provide a detailed description of the giant flying creature. As it passed over, it appeared as though it was peering below, with its head and beak positioned downward. It was estimated that if the bird was on the ground it would stand between 4 ½ to 5 feet tall. The entire body was the same dark color, either darkish brown or black. The body width was about 25-30 inches wide. One witness said the body, “was very bulky and husky.”
The head was oval shaped, and the beak was short for the size of the animal, about 8-10 inches long. The tail was about 2 feet long and came out wide to a point. It was the size of the wingspan of the creature that impressed the witnesses, which they estimated at 10 feet or more in length. When asked why nobody thought to take a picture, they pointed out that while there were cell phones lying there with camera functions, all involved were mesmerized by the encounter. One fellow I talked with said that after the experience he felt as if he was “almost in shock.”
It was later learned that another witness who lived along the road where the big bird flew over also reportedly saw the creature. One witness has been a long time hunter and is very familiar with birds native to the state and is certain that he saw something quite unusual. The area where these observations have taken place, while surrounded with some wooded locations, is well populated, and nearby Route 119 is a highly traveled roadway.
There has been a long history of sightings of giant birds with oversized wingspans in Pennsylvania as well as other sections of the United States and elsewhere. Many refer to these giant flying creatures as “Thunderbirds.” It is interesting to note that over the years around the same general area as this sighting, other residents have reported a similar strange “swoosh” sound, as though a huge bird had passed overhead, but nothing was seen.
Now years later, here is another detailed close range observation of a huge flying creature just a short distance away from the location where in 2001, a similar observation had taken place. It was on September 25, 2001, that a witness reported seeing a huge, dark colored bird flying about 50-60 feet above the traffic along Route 119 in South Greensburg. The observer was drawn to look upwards when he heard a sound, “like flags flapping in a thunderstorm.” That witness was stunned by the wingspan of the flying creature which he estimated was between 10 and 15 feet.
Interesting. I am curious though if the creature sighted was an actually "bird"; there does not seem to be any description from the witesses regarding the color of the creature's plumage. If there was no plumage than it is quite possible that the creature--if it was a true cryptid--was a pteranodon as it has been recorded that there were some species of pteranodon that were the size of modern planes and which possessed wingspans of ten feet. This would coincide with the height and wingspan of the creature sighted.
However, there are difficulties with this interpretation, as a whole and for this specific case. The general difficulty is that pteranodons were suppossed to have become extinct at the end of the Mezozoic Age with the dinosaurs. Although some may argue that some pteranodon species survived, sighting as proof of this hypothosis the discovery of the coelacanth and the possibility that lake monsters, such as the one suppossedly in Loch Ness, pteranodons would have had a harder time surviving the Mezozoic cataclysm as they lived on land and in the air; they would not have had the protection of the sea. The specific difficulty in this case is that the creature was reported as having a tail which pteranodons did not possess. An alternative explenation is that the thunderbirds are actually that--the thunderbirds which are descibed by numerous Native American tribes such as the Sioux. I have a friend who is three fourths Lakota Sioux; he explained to me that the thunderbirds were thunder reatures who were the guardians of the skies and the aides of Hoka Papa--the Great Spirit. Now, if the thunderbirds are merely a species of giant bird or if they are indeed the spiritual beings of the Indian fables--that is a question to which I have no answer at the present time. of American prehistory. believed that the giant Thunderbird could shoot lightning from its eyes.