Sunday, September 4, 2011

Mythic Beings from Murky Depths

Those Embodied with Flesh and Scale

Fantasy equal: Kraken

Some scientists believe mankind knows less about the deep waters of our own planet than what they know of the closest of celestial bodies out in space. What lies deep down the earth’s crust and deep within its oceans is the epitome of the unknown. It is no wonder many a mythological monsters and beings originate from the deep dark depths of our world.

Most of these monsters are usually decorated in scales; an array of colours and patterns. They are awe-inspiring, beautiful and sometimes deadly. We’ve dealt with mermen up till this stage. They are an obvious choice for this collection and most of the material used is attributed to these wonderful creatures. What other scale-clad creatures can be defined as mythic beings from murky depths then? Here’s a list;

Kraken
“Kraken are legendary sea monsters of gargantuan size, said to have dwelt off the coasts of Norway and Iceland. The sheer size and fearsome appearance attributed to the beasts have made them common ocean-dwelling monsters in various fictional works (see Kraken in popular culture).

The legend may actually have originated from sightings of real giant squid that are variously estimated to grow to 13–15 m (40–50 ft) in length, including the tentacles. These creatures normally live at great depths, but have been sighted at the surface and have reportedly attacked ships.

In modern German, Krake (plural and declined singular: Kraken) means octopus but can also refer to the legendary Kraken.”
http://villains.wikia.com/wiki/Kraken_%28Mythology%29

Nāga
“Nāga is the Sanskrit and Pāli word for a deity or class of entity or being, taking the form of a very great snake—specifically the King Cobra, found in Hinduism and Buddhism. The use of the term nāga is often ambiguous, as the word may also refer, in similar contexts, to one of several human tribes known as or nicknamed "Nāgas"; to elephants; and to ordinary snakes, particularly the King Cobra and the Indian Cobra, the latter of which is still called nāg in Hindi and other languages of India. A female nāga is a nāgī or nāginī.”
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/N%C4%81ga



Leviathan

“Leviathan is a sea monster referred to in the Bible. In Demonology, Leviathan is one of the seven princes of Hell and its gatekeeper (see Hellmouth). The word has become synonymous with any large sea monster or creature. In classical literature (such as the novel Moby-Dick) it refers to great whales, and in Modern Hebrew, it means simply "whale." It is described extensively in Job 41.”
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leviathan

Hipocampus
“HIPPOKAMPOI (or Hippocamps) were the horses of the sea. They were depicted as composite creatures with the head and fore-parts of a horse and the serpentine tail of a fish. In mosaic art they were often covered with green scales and had fish-fin manes and appendages. The ancients believed they were the adult-form of the fish we call the "sea-horse". Hippokampoi were the mounts of Nereid nymphs and sea-gods, and Poseidon drove a chariot drawn by two or four of the beasts.

Other fish-tailed land animals which appear in ancient art include the "Leokampos" (fish-tailed lion), "Taurokampos" (fish-tailed bull), "Pardalokampos" (fish-tailed leopard), and "Aigikampos" (fish-tailed goat). The last was the form of the constellation Capricorn. Fabulous creatures of this type were also believed to inhabit the Indian Ocean, see Ketea Indikoi.”
http://www.theoi.com/Ther/Hippokampoi.html

Nereids
“In Greek mythology, the Nereids are sea nymphs, the fifty daughters of Nereus and Doris, sisters to Nerites. They often accompany Poseidon and can be friendly and helpful to sailors fighting perilous storms. They are particularly associated with the Aegean Sea, where they dwelt with their father in the depths within a silvery cave. The most notable of them are Thetis, wife of Peleus and mother of Achilles; Amphitrite, wife of Poseidon; and Galatea, love of the Cyclops Polyphemus.”
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nereid

From the above mentioned I choose the Kraken as the fantasy equal for this collection. Why this great monster specifically? Simply put, it’s the most magnificent and badass of all the creatures that slumber in the deep; awaiting the summons of a great god to cause havoc and destruction. Below you would find more creatures you would find in places you would not dare to go. Some are good, some are bad and some probably just want to be left alone...


“The Kraken (originally known in Greek as Cetus the Whale) is a mythical sea monster of tremendous size and strength. Its tentacles are large enough to be able to pull entire ships under the water and destroy cities with relative ease. The creature possessed endurance to match its strength. In addition to tentacles it was armed with gaping maw full of many sharp teeth. The creature's many tentacles afforded it great speed in swimming.

The Kraken plays a much more major role in the 1981 Clash of the Titans movie. In this movie, it is the pet of Poseidon, and Zeus orders it to destroy Argos to punish Acrisus, the king of Argos, from casting his wife and Perseus into the sea. The goddess of the sea, Thetis, then unleashes it on the city of Joppa as an excuse to punish Perseus. Andromeda was offered to be sacrificed on Thetis' decree as Poseidon releases the Kraken. Perseus uses Medusa's Head turns the Kraken to stone.”

4 comments:

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