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Human culture throughout the ages believe in supernatural begins and dreadful beasts. More-so ancient civilizations full of myths, legends and folklore.
Religious beliefs, taboos, cultures and tradition have contributed to some of the most frightful creatures. Here is a list of some gruesome mythical creatures ever conceived.
Taotie (Chinese Mythology)
The Taotie is a nightmarish semi-sapient, carnivorous, green skinned quadruped. That operates a eusocial caste system or hierarchy with a queen, queen guards and soldiers.
They feature extremely different physiology from each other such as overlapping back plates on the large squat bodied queen. The ape-like queen guards form a protective barrier around the queen when under attack by deploying retractable armored frill shields resistant to high explosives.
The yellow eyed soldiers have hyena-like forbearance, armpit eyes, snout faces and sharp distended teeth. The ravenously meat eaters swarm the land in thousands and communicate through resonating membranous head frills over vast distances.
According to Chinese mythology found on bronze vessels, the creature is depicting as one of four evil friends. The reptilian race is said to have crash landed in ancient China around 1000 BC causing havoc, mass death every sixty years.
What makes the Taotie extremely frightening is the queen’s ability to coordinates counter offensive measures by sending signals via two vibrating head prongs. The main function of the soldier is to consume flesh en masse and regurgitate to feed the queen
Medusa (Greek Mythology)
Ancient Greece was rife with myths of heroism, politics, wars and monsters. A popular monster was Medusa daughter of Gorgon.
Apparently spawn by ancient marine deities Phorcy and Ceto. She had two immortal monster sisters Euryale and Sthenno.
Once born a beautiful woman, she was punished for an unfortunate incident caused by Poseidon in Athena’s temple. The incident enraged Athena who transformed her into a hideous monster of biblical proportions.
Her appearance is rather confusing based on different accounts and interpretations. She had a frightful face, flickering snake tongue, brazen claws, and thick serpentine locks.
Her feature comprises highly venomous snake’s hair, mouth-enormous teeth and wings. One glance at her eyes could turn any living being into stone.
The demigod Perseus son of Danae and Zeus on a quest achieved a great feat by cutting off her head. It is said that even after death one look at her eyes turn the recipient into stone.
The Kraken (Nordic Folklore)
The kraken is a legendary giant squid-octopus creature of the deep. The colossal deep sea dweller has a crazy hatred for ocean vessels. Estimated over 40 feet in length the cephalopod is a formidable adversary.
According to folklore the monster is reportedly found in Norwegian waters and resembles an octopus high on steroids. An archeological discovery of a giant cephalopod fossil beak in a Nevada park alludes to the existence of an ancient sea monster.
The colossal octopus or gigantic squid stays submerged and hunts by dragging ocean vessels to their watery grave. The beast is depicted in popular culture, television, art and cinema.
Dhampyr (South Slavic Folklore)
A south Slavic folklore describes a gory creature conceived from the unholy union between a human female and a male vampire. The resultant monstrosity is the vampire abomination called the Dhampyr.
Only the half breed male vampires Dhampyr are capable of procreating with human victims. The legendary undead creature has similar representation in Serbian and Bosnian folklore.
The origin of this strange Serbian belief is that half-breed male’s vampires retained desire for their wives or a particular female. To buttress the existence of this fantasy creature some unscrupulous Serbian males vented their lust by pretending to be a Dhampyr.
Some speculate that cross species mating is only attainable if a vampire bites a pregnant victim. While some theologians postulate that only a victim with the bloodline of the beast can procreate.
Regardless of their origin the creatures are mortal but have unusually long lives. There are conflicting representations of half-living children of a vampire.
Some depict the creature as unearthly beautiful, with tall slender form, pointed ear and nose. They are believed to have an agile gait, mortal sensitivity to light and reacts to energy.
They have long fangs, spell like ability, have a brutal disposition and unnatural ability to communicate with bats, rats and wolfs. They also have unnatural strength, stealth and inherent evil.
Racial traits include thirst for human blood, telekinetic, levitation and ability to disguise. This un-dead monster is affected by consecrated grounds, positive energy and forebears wasting illness.
Basilisk (Medieval Europe)
This strange creature emanates from the active imagination of medieval European mythology. The small serpent barely twelve fingers long is reputed as the most venomous snake in the world.
It oozes deadly venom in its wake and could kills with a single glance. The legend was inspired by accounts of giant anacondas and poisonous snakes like the king cobra. This accounts for the mythological hybrids title as king of serpents.
The basilisk is indistinguishable from the cockatrice and hatched from an amphibian or reptilian egg. There are many scholarly interpretation of this legendary creature’s origin and traced to first sighting of cobras in 79 AD.
The description of the beast is akin to king cobras behavior. The Basilisk features are unclear from its wide tail, cockatrice, snake, and dragon-like appearance. Some depict cow-like features, white spots on head and upright posture.
Characteristics include hissing, killing with a gaze and poisonous venom. Later depictions include deadly eyes, winged serpent and fire breathing.
The odor of the weasel is reputed to kill the creature. However any weasel in contact with a Basilisk will also succumb to death.
Were-Hyena (North Africa)
A were-Hyena is a malicious shapeshifting animal. The animal-human hybrid’s origin is traced to indigenous people of North Africa.
This monstrosity is narrated in indigenous folklore by tribes living in close proximity to the animal. The supernatural animal has a hyena head, human torso and hyena legs.
The beast’s mortal enemy is man and unlike werewolves the hyena transforms to human form. However another account assigns powerful wizards and witches the ability to transform into the beast.
Oddly they also believe that majority of blacksmiths are were-hyena’s. Scholars postulate that were-hyena’s emanated from villager’s ethnic prejudice, hatred and distrust of foreigners.
The shapeshifting hyena has the uncanny ability to transform into a hybrid animal, large hyena or human. They control the transformation, walk on hind legs are nocturnal and have the gift of speech.
The villages believe the creature lures its victims in the dead of night by calling their names. The beast loves to hunt human prey, hide in shadows, cannibalize and scavenge.
They are solitary or pack animals with an insatiable affinity for human flesh. Kanuri people believed that entire villages were populated by were-hyena’s. The belief is widespread from Mali, Tanzania, Morocco and Sudan.
Manticore (Persian Legendry Creature)
The Manticore myth is derived from Persian origin and loosely translated as man eater. The hybrid creature has a human head and lion’s body.
Other features include long sharp spikes on tail, three rowed teeth and dragon wings. The magical beast has good scent perception, low light vision and vicious disposition.
Weaponry at its disposal is tail spikes, bite force, flyby attack and speed. It releases the deadly spikes by snapping its tail. The venomous spikes causes’ paralysis and death.
The solitary beast is reported found in warm marshlands or high places. The carnivore weighs 1,000 pounds and 10 feet long. The Manticore is a fierce predator that prefers human flesh and actively seeks the delicacy.
It devours prey whole and consumes bones and flesh. The creature hunts, forms alliances, accept tributes and easily interbreed.
They interbreed with lions, sphinxes, dire lions, lamia and chimera. Medieval representations are found in false etymology, illustrations and images.
Scylla and Charybdis are two rocks between Sicily and Italy. They also represent of the legendary Scylla and Charybdis monsters of Greek mythology.
The beasts live around the narrow straits of the rocks causing mayhem to ships. The Scylla monster is one of many mythical creatures in the odyssey poem.
The story goes that Odysseus king of Ithaca on a 9 year voyage encountered many legendary creatures. Odysseus was eloquence, courageous and a resourcefulness individual.
He battled and outwitted Monster like Cyclops, Charybdis, Scylla and Sirens. However the skylla creature presented serious challenge for Odysseus.
The Scylla maiden is reputed to have twelve feet, six long necks and canine foreparts. She was also depicted as a sea goddess dog-shark.
Originally a beautiful woman she was caught in a love cycles between Glaucus and Cire. Cire felt unrequited love and introduced magical herbs into her bathe transforming her into a monster. Scholars attribute different parentage pointing to Trienus or Phorcus.
Werewolf (Norse mythology)
The werewolf is a fearsome creature with a veracious appetite. Different representation of the beast is found in carvings, painting, films and books.
Early European folklore believed in the lycanthropy affliction, the ability to transform into a wolf. Germanic paganism also influenced the belief in the wolfman.
While medieval belief in the existence of the beast led to prosecution of people (werewolves) in early France and Germany.
The beast could be categorizing into three distinct creatures. We have the shape shifter wolf, true wolf and the wolfman. The wolfman has physical characteristics of a regular man with wolf features.
He has more human features gradually transforms into a wolf with every full moon. On full transformation the cursed man become a full wolf and gradually looses control of his mind as the transformation progresses.
Shapeshifter werewolves have the uncanny ability to change form by harnessing negative energy. They harness energy such as anger, hurt, pain, danger and fear. The shape shifters ability is not limited only to wolf transformations making the creature highly dangerous.
A true wolf uncontrollable transforms into a wolf against his will. This transformation occurs only during a full moon.
The resultant beast becomes a vicious entity of pure rage, strength, agility and murderous intent. True werewolf occurs when a man is bitten by a werewolf. Common references of this gruesome creature are found in classical antiquity, ancient Greek literature and engravings.
Kongamato (Western Zambia)
The Kongamato legend originated from Western Zambia. Documented in Frank Mellands1923 book 'Witchbound' the features resembled prehistoric pterodactyl.
The pterosaur-like creature frequently attacked small boats along certain rivers. An engineer JPF Brown reportedly sighted the creature in 1956 along Lake Bangweulu in Zambia.
Features include leathery wings, beak and lizard-like appearance. Brown estimated the beak-to tail length at 1.4 meters. They are commonly found flying over small lakes, marshlands and are very territorial.
The black or red colored creature’s has bat wings that spans 7 feet. Similar creatures are spotted in Angola and Democratic republic of Congo.
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