Skip to main content
16 votes
Accepted

What was the earliest werewolf myth?

There's a wolf transformation in the Epic of Gilgamesh, and as written texts go they don't come any earlier. Although in this case it was a spell cast upon him and he never had a chance to transform ...
Ben Cannon's user avatar
16 votes

What kind of dog breed would Cerberus be?

Cerberus was the son of Echidna, a half-woman half-snake, and Typhon, a huge serpentine horror. That's a hell of a pedigree for a dog. More seriously, I imagine Cerberus had to be at least loosely ...
Rodia's user avatar
  • 2,317
15 votes

Are there any gods who are in a different species than humans?

The World Turtle (Wikipedia) This motif is very well known. Not a god per se, but close enough. (Btw: I think it represents a ship). Rainbow Serpent (Wikipedia) The Rainbow Serpent or Rainbow Snake ...
xaedes's user avatar
  • 328
14 votes
Accepted

What is the origin of the myth that witches burn in water?

TL;DR This belief doesn't come from a myth. It first appeared in The Wizard of Oz. I think the first time this belief was stated was in The Wizard of Oz rather than in any myths. The belief probably ...
Bellerophon's user avatar
12 votes

Are there any gods who are in a different species than humans?

Coyote! (A key figure in Navajo mythology.) Also Iktomi in Lakota mythology.
DukeZhou's user avatar
  • 14.2k
12 votes
Accepted

What kind of snakes were the Gorgons' hair made of?

Most sources I know of simply use some form of "ὄφις" (snake) when describing Medusa or her sisters. That's not particularly helpful in identifying the species of the snakes. One source that uses a ...
yannis's user avatar
  • 17k
11 votes

Why does looking at Medusa with a mirror work?

I think the "in-world" world answer would definitely be based on physics, specifically optics and reflectivity. Our modern conception is quite different than of the ancient. The modern ...
DukeZhou's user avatar
  • 14.2k
11 votes

Are there any gods who are in a different species than humans?

The Flying Spaghetti Monster! The Flying spaghetti monster is a piece of Spaghetti, which is obviously not human.
Leonardo's user avatar
  • 123
11 votes
Accepted

Are there any gods who are in a different species than humans?

Raven (Xu'uya) is the creator god in the Haida stories (from islands off the West Coast of Canada). This is one of the main cultures that used totem poles. Although many of the stories from Haida ...
Joel's user avatar
  • 226
11 votes
Accepted

God/Goddess of clones or duplicates

To answer your question if there is a god specifically for clones, the answer would be no. Since there was no such thing as cloning in ancient times they did not have a deity or creature for it (just ...
Tom Sol's user avatar
  • 4,061
11 votes
Accepted

Who was the first Satan like deity/creature/person in mythology?

This is a complex question, and entire books have been written on it. The modern conception of Satan is a mixture of qualities arising from paganism (horns, etc.) but the conception of Satan as evil ...
DukeZhou's user avatar
  • 14.2k
10 votes

Are there any gods who are in a different species than humans?

Looking at old forms of religion, aka totemism, is a good way for you to find animal gods. You can put some decent bets on the fact cavern paintings was religious in nature. And there are dozens of ...
Gibet's user avatar
  • 3,511
10 votes
Accepted

Is there a common theme of dragon meat being toxic?

I'm going to guess that the stories of toxicity of dragon meat is largely modern, as I can't think of stories from the traditional canons where this is a story element. It may derive from the story ...
DukeZhou's user avatar
  • 14.2k
10 votes
Accepted

Zombies and ways of stopping them?

Jiang Shi meaning "Stiff Corpse" is a kind of zombie from Chinese Mythology. The Jiang Shi can be stopped by throwing rice or coins on the ground, as they will not pursue their target until they ...
Tom Sol's user avatar
  • 4,061
10 votes

Could all three Gorgons turn people to stone, or just Medusa?

Only Medusa. Medusa was the only mortal of the three sisters, and the only beautiful one. Poseidon raped her in one of Athena's temples. The other gods demanded that Medusa be punished for "defiling" ...
Lauren-Clear-Monica-Ipsum's user avatar
9 votes

Is there a word for the type of creatures that feeds off human energy, such as emotions?

Attachment spirits. In Native American and Eastern European shamanism, they attach to people either to vicariously live through them, or to whip up the emotions so they can feed off them. This happens ...
Mary C's user avatar
  • 91
9 votes
Accepted

Are there any mythologic Gods, creatures or equipment that have "exponential" characteristics?

Not associated with any "gods" as such; there are a large number of folktales containing items with exponential growth. The Aarne-Thompson classification system groups many of these stories into ...
Spencer's user avatar
  • 1,623
9 votes
Accepted

Are there any mythical creatures in Islam?

To fully answer this question you need to divide the problem in two models: The pure Coran creatures The creature relative to the folklore as the one you find in the popular Arabian nights/1001 ...
Gibet's user avatar
  • 3,511
9 votes

Where are there female centaurs in mythology?

Wikipedia has a nice article about the Centaurides, or centauresses, the female centaurs. First encountered in Greek mythology as members of the tribe of the Centauroi, the Centaurides are only ...
Rodia's user avatar
  • 2,317
9 votes
Accepted

How did Hercules kill the lion without being clawed to death?

Presumably, by "the lion", you are referring to the Nemean Lion. The Wrestler The poet Theocritus addresses this precise issue in the 25th of his Idylls. In it, Heracles (whom the Romans called ...
Adinkra's user avatar
  • 9,833
9 votes
Accepted

Could all three Gorgons turn people to stone, or just Medusa?

All three. None of the oldest sources seem to confirm or deny, since Medousa's sisters don't really do much in the most famous myths. But some later authors made it explicit. From Nonnus's Dionysiaca, ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 1,318
8 votes
Accepted

What are the differences between fauns and satyrs?

According to theoi, Satyrs are depicted as having: the tail of a horse, assine ears, upturned pug noses, reclining hair-lines, and erect members. Another group of 'rustic' spirits called the Panes ...
plannapus's user avatar
  • 3,549
8 votes

Why does Indian mythology not have humongous beasts like that of Chinese dragon?

Even though the geographical locations might be very near, it has to be noticed that there hasn't been a considerable mixture of both the cultures due to the following reasons: The Himalayas acted as ...
Dawny33's user avatar
  • 714
8 votes

Are there any gods who are in a different species than humans?

Nandi (Hinduism) is a bull. Nandi is the gate-guardian deity of Kailasa, the abode of Lord Shiva. I think you could argue that Nandi is a god. He is a devotee of Shiva, but he is worshipped as a god ...
Fiksdal's user avatar
  • 180
8 votes
Accepted

How are the internal organs of centaurs arranged?

You are essentially correct: If a centaur were real, it would have a lot of duplicate structures which don't make anatomical sense: The answer, of course, is that centaurs are just as mythical as ...
Lauren-Clear-Monica-Ipsum's user avatar
8 votes

How and why are Idunn and Tyr gods?

To answer briefly: Being a god was not about belonging to a specific "race". For Idunn, we can compare with the division of the gods into aesir and vanir, where the latter were in some sense linked ...
andejons's user avatar
  • 6,026
8 votes
Accepted

The repertoire of the Sphinx

Ps.-Apollodorus implies that there is only one riddle, which she learned from the Muses. From Theoi: Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 3. 52 - 55 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) : "...
cmw's user avatar
  • 7,327
8 votes
Accepted

Hugin and Muninn in runes

Of course you can write their names in runes; runes is simply another alphabet (or rather: several alphabets). Here's what it would look like, using the Younger futhark: ᚼᚢᚴᛁᚾ Hugin ᛘᚢᚾᛁᚾ Munin (...
andejons's user avatar
  • 6,026
8 votes
Accepted

Slavic mythology, human-animal hybrid creature

Hejkal, Čatež, Jezinka. One is a black man completely coved in moss, lichen, grass and bracken. Very often with animal like claws and other features, such as small horns, or patches of fur or a tail....
Nuloen The Seeker's user avatar
7 votes

Greek/Roman Mermaids

Virtually all the ichthyanthropomorphic [part fish, part humanoid] characters featured in Greco-Roman mythology are water deities, usually sea-gods. Even Aigipan, the one aegichthyomorphic [part goat, ...
Adinkra's user avatar
  • 9,833

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible