Friday, March 5, 2010

Mythic Beings of Beast and Man



Those of Half-breed Pedigree


Fantasy equal: Satyrs, Minotaurs and Centaurs


Many of the mythical beings shaped by the minds of the ancient Greeks are part man and part beast. Some of these creatures’ appearances are based on farm animals, which makes one wonder whether the minds of perhaps lazy shepherd boys conjured these wondrous creatures and the great tales they feature in. I can identify three of these farm animal creatures; the centaur, the minotaur and the satyr/faun, all of which form a fantasy equal of a collection I posted previously.


The Satyr or Faun is part man (top half) and part goat (lower half) complete with a little tail and a pair of horns. In the world of animation, you can find fauns in the movies Narnia. The top half of the faun is portrayed by an actor, where the lower half is computer generated. You will also cross paths with them early on in the PC game called Titan Quest where they try to pierce you with arrows, impale you with javelins or zap you with shaman magic.


The Minotaur is part man (torso and arms) and part bull (lower half and head). The tale of the Minotaur is a classic tale of how the gods reward and just as easy punish mortals for their deeds. Minos, the Ruler of Crete, prayed for a white bull from Poseidon, God of the Seas. This he was granted, but at Poseidon’s bequest, had to sacrifice the bull in his name. Minos, however, decided to keep the bull. As punishment, Poseidon made Minos’ wife fall deeply in love with the bull. So much so that she copulated with the bull. As the gods would have it, she bore the bull’s offspring and so the fearsome Minotaur was born.


The Minotaur can also be found in Narnia. The White Witch’s commander is portrayed by one. The Minotaur also makes his appearance in the games of Titan Quest, Neverwinter Nights and Heroes of Might and Magic.


The centaur is part man and part horse. This creature is simply magnificent with the torso, head and arms of a man substituting a horse’s head and neck. Where the Minotaur was the commander of the forces of darkness in Narnia, so is a centaur the commander of the forces of good. Titan Quest features all Greek mythological beings and creatures, so you’d definitely find them there, opposing you unfortunately. Furthermore they form part of the Stronghold faction in the game of Heroes of Might and Magic V. I would have liked them to be on the side of the Sylvans rather, as was the case with the game’s predecessors; Heroes of Might and Magic III and IV.


The following collection depicts these creatures in an animated design we all enjoy.



3 comments:

  1. Do you know where the first Centaur is from? Great blog! :)

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