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Mythic Creatures That Never Existed But People Believed In Anyway
1. The fish man of Lirganes
The fish man of Lirganes existence has been suggested but has not been proven and belongs to the mythology of Cantabria, an autonomous community located in northern Spain. The fish man of Lirganes, according to urban legend, is an amphibious being that looks like a depressed man who had been lost at sea. Many people believed that the fish man was one of the four sons of Francisco de la Vega and Mar?a del Casar, a couple who lived in the area, who was thought to have drowned when he went swimming with his friends in Bilbao s estuary and was never seen again. What s even more strange about this story is the fact that the bright Spanish Enlightenment scholar Benito Jer?nimo Feijoo, who was known for encouraging scientific and empirical thought in an effort to debunk myths and superstitions, examined the tale closely, and was charmed by this story to the point that he claimed, against his own better judgment, that the story of the fish man of Lirganes was somehow true.
The weird creatures named korrigan come from Brittany, a cultural region in the northwest of France with a very rich literary tradition and folklore. Some sources say a korrigan was a beautiful, kind fairy while other sources describe them as evil spirits that looked like dwarfs and danced around fountains while seducing people with their charm in order to kill them or steal their children. According to a popular Breton poem called Ar Rannou (which is the most reliable source for information about these creatures) nine korrigans dance, with flowers in their hair, and robes of white wool, around the fountain, by the light of the full moon waiting for their victims.
According to Japanese legend, a kodama is a peaceful spirit that lives inside certain kinds of trees. Those who have claimed to have seen a kodama describe it as a small white and peaceful ghost that syncs perfectly with Mother Nature. Nevertheless, according to legend, when someone tries to kill a kodoma (or cut down the tree a kodama lives in), the aggressor will be cursed and many bad things will happen to him. There are also claims of human blood coming out of trees inhabited by kodomas if its cut down but none of these rumors have ever been verified.
The fierce and powerful dullahan is a headless horse rider found in Irish folklore and mythology. For centuries the Irish have believed in its existence, especially during the Middle Ages and have described him to be a harbinger of doom who traveled on a black, malevolent horse with his terrifying, decapitated head under its arm.
Antaeus was a giant with super strength that he inherited from his father, Poseidon (god of the sea), and his mother, Gaia (Earth), but he became weak once he was lifted into the air. He was the bully type who lived somewhere in the Libyan desert and would challenge any poor fool who had the unfortunate luck of passing through his territory to a deadly wrestling match, ultimately killing them, and then collecting their skulls so he could one day build a temple dedicated to Poseidon with these trophies. But one day his luck went south, however, because one of the passersby happened to be Heracles, who was on his way to the Garden of the Hesperides to complete his eleventh labor. Antaeus made the fatal mistake of challenging Heracles, and once the world s greatest hero discovered the giant s kryptonite he lifted him up and crushed him in a bear hug.
6. Baba Yaga
Baba Yaga is probably one of the most popular paranormal creatures in Eastern European folklore and, according to urban legend, had the appearance of a ferocious and extremely intimidating older woman. According to Andreas John, author of Baba Yaga: The Ambiguous Mother and Witch of the Russian Folktale; Baba Yaga is a many faceted figure, capable of inspiring researchers to see her as a Cloud, Moon, Death, Winter, Snake, Bird, Pelican or Earth Goddess, totemic matriarchal ancestress, female initiator, phallic mother, or archetypal image.
According Jewish urban legend the Broxa is an aggressive, intimidating looking bird that attacked goats for their milk or, in rare cases, would go for human blood during the night. The Broxa legend became famous in Northern Europe during the Middle Ages where people seemed to believe that it took the appearance of a witch in its female form or of a demon in its male form and attacked people ( especially women and children).
8. Lernaean Hydra
The Lernaean Hydra was a mythical water monster with many heads that resembled big snakes, and which Heracles killed in the second of his twelve labors. The ferocious monster lived in Lerna, a small village near Argos, from which it took its name.
According to legend, when Heracles cut off one head, two emerged. For this reason, Heracles s nephew, Iolaus, burnt the root of each head once his uncle cut it off, only then did they stop multiplying.
When Heracles cut off the last head, which was the biggest one and believed to be immortal, he buried it in the earth so it would not rise from the dead and terrorize the area again. Heracles then used its blood (which was poisonous) to make poisoned arrows and thus a deadly weapon against his enemies.
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