In almost every society in the world, there are countless legends that change according to the geography, culture and lifestyle of that society. These legends are sometimes based on a real event, sometimes based on an old belief. Sometimes it can appear to meet any need of that society. Moreover, these legends have existed for thousands of years, being told or written down from generation to generation. So many of these legends have a very important element: Monsters! Sometimes the monster in a legend can be just as interesting and popular as the hero in the legend, maybe even more. We have researched the origins of the legends and “evil heroes” monsters of different cultures for you…
Golem is a terrible creature featured in the legends of Jewish culture. They are created from mud or clay. These terrifying monsters have no souls and their intelligence is quite low. This is why they are extremely obedient creatures. They perfectly carry out the orders they received from their creators…
Although many legends in Jewish culture include these monsters, the most famous narrative about Golems is the 17th century legend of the “Prague Golem”. According to this legend, the rabbi in Prague named “Judah Loew Ben Bezalel” creates a Golem to prevent attacks against Jews. The golem’s forehead is inscribed with the Hebrew word “emet,” meaning righteousness. In addition, the Golem is forbidden to work on Saturdays, which are considered sacred to the Jews. Before every Saturday, the letter e on the Golem’s forehead is erased. Thus, the word “met”, which means death in Hebrew, remains written on the forehead of the Golem, and the Golem spends his Saturdays inactive. But one day, the Jews forget to delete the letter e on the Golem’s forehead! As a result, the Golem spirals out of control, destroying everything in its path! In order to stop the Golem, humans have to erase all the letters written on his forehead, and this terrible beast is smashed into pieces…
The Minotaur, whose origins date back to Ancient Greek myths, is a bull-human hybrid beast. According to legend, he was born as a result of the intercourse of a bull with Pasiphae, Queen of Crete. This mythological beast has the appearance of a bull-headed human. According to the legend in Ancient Greece, King Minos of Crete, wife of Queen Pasiphae, was so frightened when he saw this monster that he built a huge labyrinth to trap the monster.
3. The Loch Ness Monster
The origins of the Loch Ness Monster, which is on our list of legendary monsters, can be traced back to the earliest communities living in Scotland. It is believed that the monster was first seen in the 6th century! The Loch Ness Monster, the most famous among the countless water monsters in Scottish legends, takes its name from the lake called Loch Ness.
There is no definite information about where the Basilisk, a famous European monster, “come from”. However, some sources say that this legendary beast is of Italian origin, while some sources say that the origins of the Basilisk go back to Ancient Greek legends.
Also known as the “King of the Snakes”, traces of the Basilisk are also found in the Bible or in the works of Leonardo da Vinci. Basilisk’s fearsomeness comes from its gigantic size, as well as its ability to kill living things “with just its eyes”! In addition, the Basilisk, which is depicted as a creature mixed with a snake and a rooster in the first texts, continues to exist only as a gigantic snake in today’s narratives.
Although the dragon is a monster in the legends of many societies, the origins of this beast are not known for certain. However, dragons are depicted in almost every culture as “living things that can fly, have wings, resemble snakes or dinosaurs”. On the other hand, some characteristics of dragons differ from society to society. For example, dragons in Western legends have the ability to breathe fire from their mouths. Many dragons in Eastern legends are depicted as wingless, unlike dragons in Europe. Finally, some societies believe that dragons are not mythical beasts but ancient extinct creatures…
Zombies are one of the most well-known monsters of our time. These monsters, which are the subject of many movies, books and works of art today, also have a deep-rooted history! Zombies, thought to have originated in “Haitian” culture, were first used to describe corpses that were reanimated by “magic”. But over the years, zombie legends have also changed, due to changing “sources of fear”. In most zombie narratives today, zombies appear not because of magic, but because of viruses!
Vampire legends first appeared in Europe. Despite this, it is known that different societies have their own vampire stories. Vampires are described as monsters that survive by sucking the blood of humans in most legends. In some legends, these monsters have the ability to “turn into bats”!
Just like zombies, vampires are among the popular monsters of today. However, vampires today have little to do with vampires from the past! Today’s “charismatic and mysterious” vampire image emerged at the beginning of the 19th century!
Chimera is perhaps one of the most interesting monsters in Ancient Greece! Because the Chimera is a combination of a lion, a goat and a snake! Moreover, this interesting beast can also spew fire from its mouth! In addition, Chimera was also used as a general term to describe monsters formed by the combination of different creatures in Ancient Greece.
The werewolf, like many other monsters, is a monster that can be found in different societies. But some of the earliest narratives date back to Ancient Greece. The werewolf, in its most general definition, depicts a person who can sometimes change shape and turn into a wolf. Ancient societies most likely “feared” werewolves. However, werewolves are quite “loved” monsters today. In many werewolf stories today, one has to be exposed to the “moonlight” in order to transform into this monster. However, there was no such “necessity” in ancient legends…
The Phoenix is a mythical creature that, when it reaches the end of its life, is “reborn from the ashes” and thus enjoys eternal life! Moreover, it is a creature that can reach gigantic dimensions! Also a symbol of immortality, eternity and resurrection! It is thought that this mythical creature first appeared in Ancient Egyptian legends.
Fauns, whose names are mentioned in ancient Greek and Roman myths, are monsters that look like a goat with their feet, tail and horns, and a human with the rest of the body! Also, fauns in half-human, half-goat form are some of the most helpful monsters on our list! Fauns are fun monsters who, despite their frightening appearance, enjoy helping travelers stranded on the road.
The centaurs are another human-animal hybrid in Greek myths. This beast is commonly known as the centaur. Legends tell that centaurs were extremely angry and arrogant creatures. But the centaurs, for all their anger and arrogance, are highly knowledgeable monsters! Because of these features, it is known that some characters in Greek mythology were trained by centaurs.