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Questions tagged [myth-identification]

For questions about identifying a particular myth based on certain known facts or a basic description of its context, characters and events.

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Are there any ancient myths about humans travelling back in time?

Does such a way of human time travel occur in ancient myths?
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1answer
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What is the origin of these creatures in Appalachian folklore?

My family (for these intents and purposes) comes from the mountains of Appalachian southern Virginia. The older folks told tales of three specific monsters as warning against wayward children ...
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Library re-ordered instead of being destroyed?

I have a memory of a story in which the custodians of a large library pleaded with a conqueror to not destroy the books within, which he promised. He kept his promise, but still rendered the library ...
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What was the parentage of the Korean King Suro?

According to Korean myth, King Suro of Geumgwan Gaya was one of six eggs that descended from heaven. Does he have any parentage other then that? Any details about who laid the eggs? Or any other ...
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Hindu myth about Brahma punishing a “Knowledge Tree”?

It is claimed that there is a Hindu myth about a "Knowledge Tree" or "World Tree" with parallels to the Tower of Babel. I've found references to the myth in some online pages like this (although this ...
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Why was Marduk made ruler before his victory?

Babylonian In the begining of Babylonian mythology, their is a war between the older generation of gods and the newer generation. Apsu and Tiamat's descendents became an unruly crowd. Eventually ...
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Why was Tenes made king?

Tenes was a son of Apollo or King Cycnus and was falsely accused of forced intercourse. He was found guilty. As punishment, he and his sister were put in a box (much like the legend of Perseus and his ...
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According to Hindu Mythology, why do people produce smoke, light and ring the bell?

Could you please explain, while doing worshiping, according to Hindu Mythology, why do people produce smoke through burning joss sticks; light a candle-like light called "Dip jyoti" prepared from ...
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Where to find myths about the origin of civilization?

Is there a particular book (from a trustworthy source of course) I can see/buy or website(s) (preferably academic, that legally allow(s) non-academics access to this information)?
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How did you survive my 100-step punch?

I remember from long ago a story about a martial artist, The Bully, who was renowned for his "100-step punch": if he lands the blow, you will die after taking 100 steps. One day another martial ...
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1answer
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Did Zeus give Pandora the box?

Did Zeus give Pandora the box? So the version I'm most familiar with is that Epimetheus had a box containing the evils of the world, but in some other versions e.g. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=...
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Planctae vs. Symplegades

In the Argonautica, both the Planctea and the Symplegades are mentioned. One on the way in search of the Golden Fleece and the other on the way back. The Planctea was also known as, "the Wondering ...
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Snakes shape shifting to human form after they turn 100

There is this myth in some parts of the world (mostly south Asia and middle east ) that once a snake turns 100 they can transform into a human. I wonder where this myth started from. If this could be ...
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A rock on a beach

I've heard of a story in greek mythology, but I am missing a lot of details. Can you help me recover the place where, supposedly, everything happened ? A guy goes alone to a village to steal wine and ...
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1answer
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What do you call a human who can take energy from other living objects?

I'm not exactly sure what to think but after doing it so often I was just curious if there is a name? I've noticed that when I'm tired while say I'm at work I can place my palm to a tree and it begins ...
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1answer
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What scripture describes humans as being morally superior to angels?

At the climax of Fate/stay night's Heaven's Feel route, the main antagonist, Kirei Kotomine refers to a religious scripture that says humans are morally superior to angels because humans can choose ...
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Looking for a character's name

I recently heard a reference to a character the gods sentenced to live long enough to see the results of his bad advice. I am looking for a reference for this story, specifically the name of the ...
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1answer
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Which ancient hero is most associated with confronting the unknown?

I came across this quote from Jordan Peterson: Well what would you want to be king? You could say king of the world or king of your own soul: What do you wanna subordinate yourself to. How 'bout ...
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Why is Atabey specifically the goddess/spirit of horizontal water?

Atabey, goddess, is one of two supreme (major) gods in Taino Mythology (Caribbean islands). She was worshiped as the goddess of fresh water, though her representation as an Earth Spirit connects her ...
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Who wrote about gorgon's blood?

I came across a portion of Myth a while back. It said something like gorgon's blood taken from one side of the body can heal any malady but the other side can kill instantly. Who is this writing (for ...
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1answer
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What is the Myth that had Shakespeare inspired to write Romeo and Juliet?

In my last question, I mentioned a love story that Shakespeare based his Romeo and Juliet story on. I said I tried and failed to find their names. The following is what I know of this story. They ...
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Why does Digenes kill Maximo?

In trying to answer this question, I found this. On page two, it says that Digenes kills Maximo after sparring her life twice. Before he kills Maximo, they experienced adulterated copulation. What is ...
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Why is Chhinnamasta called The self-decapitated Goddess?

She is a Mahavidya, a list of Sakta and Buddhist goddesses, and the sixth listed on the Wikipedia page. (I don't know if that's important.) Here, she is described as the 'self-decapitated Goddess.' ...
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Who said Hermes helped Hades?

Retrieved from here. This is a mosaic depicting Hades abducting Persephone. Helping him, is Hermes. I do not recall a version of the myth in which Hermes helps Hades. Is there a version, or is this ...
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Are dragons intelligent?

Intelligent can mean a number of things, so to simplify, lets limit it to capable of human speech. It is a common quality in movies and books to give dragons the power of human speech, but are such ...
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1answer
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A battle between Maximo and Digenis in Greek Folklore

While working on an essay, I came across a book called the "The study of Russian folklore" which mentions encounters between an Amazon Maximo and Digenis Akritas and also between Siegfried and a ...
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How did Homer describe Mycenae?

Did he link his description with myth of Perseus? Could we imagine how it looks like ?
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Poseidon has two wives when/why/how?

Poseidon's wife is Amphitrite. Some say she is a Nereid, others say an Oceanid. When Poseidon first pursued her for marriage, she fled. Later the dolphin god, Delphin, persuaded her to marry the sea ...
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1answer
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What is the mythological status of the 'goethia' demons?

The 'goethia' is a list of numbered (Christian, as in rulers of hell) demons of which their benefits are documented (this one only speaks the truth in a magical circle, this one provides great riches, ...
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Why is easter called 'easter'?

The Christian feast of 'easter' is based on the ancient Yewish religious feast (their main one), is widely spread and was linked to remember the 'Passion of Christ'. Recall that 'Christianity' started ...
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Who had a Nekyia vs a Katabasis?

A Nekyia (νέκυια) is a ritual to summon the dead. An example of this is Odysseus in the Odyssey. A Katabasis (κατάβασις) is a journey into the Underworld while still living. Heracles is one hero who ...
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Who says Abraxas is a prince of hell?

I asked a previous question about Abraxas here, briefly talking about what he is and asking how the number 365 relates to him in so many ways. A few days later, I was talking to someone who happened ...
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177 views

Pre-Tolkien Orcs in myths or folklore?

So what I'm trying to understand is what exactly pre-Tolkien orcs were like in regards to folklore. I understand that Tolkien has had a massive influence on how we conceptualize many creatures from ...
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When and why did necromancy became a bad thing?

Talking about Europe and cultures that influenced it... Why and since when was the revival of the dead considered evil? In Greek mythology bringing back a loved one is hard or comes at a price, but ...
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1answer
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What is the earliest story of summoning the dead we know of?

This is a followup to: What is the earliest ghost story we know of? In this question, I am looking for stories involving mortals summoning the spirits of the dead from the underworld. The spirits ...
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What is the earliest ghost story we know of?

I am looking for early stories that follow the popular theme of the ghost story: A spirit of the dead appearing amongst the living. Bonus points if there's a haunting involved. I'm only interested in ...
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What is the source of the story of Hades trapping Pirithous and Theseus in the Chairs of Forgetfulness?

Apparently, there is a version of the Pirithous and Theseus story that has Hades trapping the pair in the Underworld by having them sit on the Chairs of Forgetfulness: This happened, some think, ...
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1answer
120 views

What are the 365 virtues?

I was researching and I came across Abraxas, a daemon(inferior god), an archon, an aeon, the "Supreme" god, an angel... He has a place in many mythologies, and the number 365 keeps coming up. 365 ...
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What are some iconic legends of human depravity and spiritual pollution?

My purposes are non-salacious, I promise. There's an undercurrent in mythology and folklore that I didn't get a lot of in school, but which I've noticed more and more of as I've read on my own. ...
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Is there a myth that dolphins were humans who chose to return to the sea?

In the Fantasy Island (1998) episode "Dreams", Michael Allen is a stockbroker who finds a mysterious woman (played by Jennifer Garner) who says this to him when they first meet. Sally: You know, ...
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Benevolent king gives greatest gift: yourself/himself

Story of a benevolent king (or queen?) who disguises himself among peasants and then reveals himself or is revealed as king and then one of the peasants with whom he interacts thanks the king for the ...
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1answer
575 views

Japanese Trickster Demons

Are there any trickster demons in Japanese mythology, I am aware of the somewhat tricksy Japanese god Susanoo-no-Mikoto, but are there any demons known for tricking people in Japanese mythology?
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What is the Norse equivalent to the Great Flood?

I have constantly heard that every mythology has its own version to explain why the ocean rose after the last ice age ended(roughly 10,000 years ago). But, I have only heard the christian version with ...
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Are there any ancient myths about human body parts said to be benefical or detrimental when eaten?

Additionally, do we know why they were said to be beneficial/detrimental? I think I remember a myth in some culture believing that eating your enemy's heart would give you their strength, but I'm not ...
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1answer
321 views

Are there any monkey gods in Africa?

The Mayans had Hun Batz, the Chinese have the Monkey King, and the Hindus have Hanuman. Monkeys are also indigenous to Africa, so I'm assuming there are also simian gods from that region.
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Why is Aether shown battling a lion-headed giant?

In this picture, the primordial god of the upper air, Aether, is depicted wrestling a lion-headed giant. Is there a myth/story for this anywhere?
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Who did Zeus punish by having poison/acid dripped on them?

I am not sure if this is a real myth, as I learned about it from a tumbling post: But if it is, share all you know.
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Tales of bats as witches' familiars?

One of the superstitions in the article 13 Halloween Superstitions & Traditions Explained is about bats: Medieval folklore also described bats as witches' familiars, and seeing a bat on ...
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Is there a Maori legend about a demon's heart at the bottom of a lake?

In the second episode of the first season of the television series Top of the Lake, a beautiful Maori legend is mentioned: You know there's a, Maori legend about this lake That says there's a ...
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1answer
268 views

Is there a tale of Zeus having sex with a deer?

I heard about a myth saying Zeus had sex with a deer, but after hours of research, I hold nothing. Can anyone tell me of this myth? I am especially interested in acquiring any information about a ...