13 Mysterious Mythological Monsters
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According to European legend, this reptile is often referred to as the king of the serpents due to a crown shaped crest on its head … and a single glance from its eyes is enough to kill you! One of the earliest known accounts of the creature dates to around 79 AD … where it was actually described as resembling a cow! More often, however, the monster is described as something of a hybrid … having a snakelike tail with a body that contains the legs, head and wings of a cockatrice (kok-uh-triss) … that being a bipedal dragonlike creature with the head of a rooster. The Basilisk is said to leave a wide trail of poison in its wake, making it easy to spot the beast’s den -- because all the vegetation around it has been scorched by the toxin. Did you know that the only creature immune to the Basilisk’s deadly gaze is the weasel?
This legendary creature lived in Europe and Asia … and is said to resemble a bison … with a horse-like mane and horns that curve inward. The creature appears during the Middle Ages in bestiaries (BES-chee-air-ees), or fables, where it’s described as having reddish brown to black fur. Because its horns were ineffective for fighting, the beast developed a unique way to defend itself. When threatened, the creature would fire huge chunks of feces/dung from its anus/posterior at its attacker … at a range covering more than 600 meters! The feces/dung were said to scorch its victims with a type of fire, enabling the Bonnacon (BON-uh-kun) enough time to make its escape.
These creatures are most often described as ghostly black dogs, and are often found in folklore of the British Isles … however, variations of these beasts also appear in various folklore from around the world. Black dogs are nocturnal entities that appear as apparitions, and are often linked to the hellhound. They usually have glowing eyes and generally appear larger than a normal canine. By some accounts the creature can turn invisible … and can shape shift, assuming the form of demonic sheep, or a huge black donkey. The harrowing sound of rattling chains is said to audible in whatever form it assumes. All variations of the creature have this in common: seeing it means a portent of death for the witness. The malevolent black dogs served as inspiration for the Sherlock Holmes’ adventure “The Hound of the Baskervilles”.
This is likely one of the more recognizable creatures on our list. More formally identified as The Hydra of Lerna, the serpentine water monster has its origins in Greek and Roman mythology. The oldest documented description of the beast dates back to around 700 BC. It lived in the lake of Lerna, which was said to be the gateway to the underworld. The Hydra was known to have many heads, but the exact number varies according to the source … we found estimates ranging from nine heads to 50. Generally, the Hydra is through to regenerate two heads for every one that is cut off … but numbers as to that can vary as well. Most accounts are consistent regarding the creature’s poisonous breath and blood … even its scent was said to be lethal. The Hydra was said to be kIlled by Hercules in the second of his 12 Labors.
1.Krampus (Bad Santa) (KRAM-pus)
If Santa Claus had an evil doppelganger it might be this creature. In folklore of regions stretching from eastern Europe to northern Italy, Krampus is actually one of Saint Nicholas’s companions … although his exact origin remains unclear. But while Krampus (KRAM-pus) carries a sack, it’s not filled with presents … the sack contains naughty kids being transported to be drowned or eaten. The creature’s malevolent manner is only enhanced by its appearance -- usually described as being covered in dark hair, with cloven hooves, horns, a long pointed tongue and fangs. This bad Santa is essentially, half-demon, half-goat. In certain parts of Europe, ‘Krampusnacht’ (KRAM-pus nocked) or Krampus NIght is celebrated on December 5. The beast appears with Santa Claus on city streets as they visit homes and businesses. While Saint Nick hands out gifts, Krampus hands out coal!