Classical Creatures

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Mythology Resources

Creatures: African * American * Arthurian * Asian * Celtic * Classical * European * Germanic * Judeo-Christian * Middle Eastern * Oceanic
Spirits: African * American * Arthurian * Asian * Celtic * Classical * European * Germanic * Judeo-Christian * Middle Eastern * Oceanic
Mortals: African * American * Arthurian * Asian * Celtic * Classical * European * Germanic * Judeo-Christian * Middle Eastern * Oceanic
Locations: African * American * Arthurian * Asian * Celtic * Classical * European * Germanic * Judeo-Christian * Middle Eastern * Oceanic
Artifacts: African * American * Arthurian * Asian * Celtic * Classical * European * Germanic * Judeo-Christian * Middle Eastern * Oceanic

Cretan

Etruscan

  • charontes - death demons (Charun is one); psychopomps
  • lasas - bejeweled, winged female spirits with garlands; attend Turan; similar to lares

Greek

  • acephalos/akephale - Libyan race; headless with mouth in chest
  • aeternae - beasts with saw edged bone protrusions on heads; lived in India, attacked Alexander's army
  • alastores - wandering ghosts
  • amphisbaena - dragon with heads on either end of body; lives in Africa; ant-eating serpent
  • Anemoi - wind gods
  • Argus - many-eyed giant
  • Aries - winged giant ram of golden fleece
  • artabtitae - four legged race of Africa
  • aspidochelone/asp turtle/fastitocalon - vast sea monster; stony body resembled island that even grew shrubs and trees; inspired Arabian zaratan
  • automaton - creatures created out of metal, mostly by Hephaestus or Daedalus
  • Birds of Ares - birds which could shoot arrows; served Ares
  • Bull Serpent/Taurus Ophis - black bull with serpent tail; slain by titan
  • burculacas - vampire made of slime and excrement
  • Calingi - Indian tribe that only lived for eight years
  • callicantzaros - vampire that lives in underworld and attacks during week after Christmas
  • Calydonian Boar - chthonic monster sent by Artemis
  • Campe/Kampe - she-dragon that guarded hecatonchires until slain by Zeus
  • Cecrops - a king with man's body but snake's tail
  • cercopes/kercopes - evil race in Lydia; Heracles defeated them, Zeus turned them into apes and sent them to Pithicusae (Islands of the Apes)
  • centaur - horse-men
    • ichthyocentaur (2nd C) - torso of man, forelegs of horse, hindquarters of dolphin; possibly same as tritons
    • hippopodes/ipopodes - appear human but with horse legs and hooves; live in Scythia
  • Cerastes - serpent without a spine; ram horns
  • Cerberus - 3-headed hound of Hades
  • Ceryneian Hind - sacred hind of Artemis caught by Heracles
  • Cetus - sea serpent of Poseidon that attacks Andromeda
  • charis - three goddess of charm and beauty, fertility; same as Roman graces
  • Charybdis - sea monster; giant mouth
  • Chimera - three-headed monster; goat, lion, dragon heads; snake's tail
  • Chromandae - monkey-like Indian tribe
  • cyclops - one-eyed giants; create thunderbolt; imprisoned in Tartarus (freed by Zeus)
  • dactyl/daktyloi - race of male smiths; served Rhea; three dexterous spirits that work with metals, botany, music, and sorcery; live on Mount Ida; original inhabitants of land, similar to fomorians or dwarfs
  • daimon/daemon - spirits in general (anything less than a god)
  • Delphyne - she-dragon that guarded Delphi for Gaea
  • demi-god - half-god, half-human
  • donestre - lion-headed men that eat humans and then weep in legends of Alexander
  • eidolon - a ghost or astral double, which may appear after death
  • empusa - demonesses; daughters Hecate; drain life force; can have donkey legs or be beautiful; similar to lamiae and lilim
  • erinyes/eumindes/furies - twisted female monsters that punish those that escape justice
  • erotes - messengers of Eros; tiny genii
  • Erymanthian Boar - monstrous boar captured by Heracles
  • gigantes - giants (race that rose up against gods)
  • gold-digging ant (Medieval) - dog-sized ants in Ethiopia said to dig up gold
  • Gorgades - African island tribe whose women are hairy
  • gorgon - three sisters turned into snake-haired monsters; petrify with gaze
  • graeae/gray ones - monsters women that have only a single eye to share between 3 of them
  • harpy/arepyiai - winged death spirits; similar to sirens; tormentors
  • hecatonchires - hundred armed giants; guard titans in Tartarus
  • hippocampus - sea horse (also Phoenician); forequarters of horse, hindquarters of fish
  • hippalektryon - horse with rooster hindquarters
  • hydra - many-headed monster (dragon-like)
  • Indos Worm - giant white worm of Indus river
  • ipotane - horse men (legs, hind quarters, tail, ears of horse)
  • Karkinos - crab that fought against Heracles while he fought hydra; became constellation Cancer
  • ketos indikos - sea monsters of India; hybrids of different animals such as rams, fish, lions, or wolves
  • Khalkotauroi - bronze-hoofed bulls Jason encounters; bronze mouths; breathe fire
  • kobalos - mischievous sprite; shapeshifting gnomes or dwarves; accompanied Dionysus
  • korybantes/kuretes - lusty demon/spirit companions of Rhea; protected infant Zeus
  • Ladon many-headed serpent dragon that guards Hesperides golden apples
  • laestrygonians - giant cannibals
  • lamiae - child-murdering spawn of Lamia; vampiric half-women half serpents; subsist on semen
  • machleys - one side is male, one side is female
  • Macrobi - Indian tribe that doesn't age
  • Macrocephali - large-headed African tribe
  • Mandoi - Indian tribe that grows old just after birth
  • minotaur - half-bull, half-man; locked in Labyrinth
  • moirae/moerae/fates - white-robbed petrifactions of destiny; women that spun the lives of gods and men
  • monopod one-footed dwarfs
  • Mormo - vampire spirit that bites bad children
    • mormolykeia - underworld demons like Mormo; vampire-like creatures
  • muse - spirits of inspiration
  • neades - giant animals of island of Samos; their roars could split the ground
  • Nemean Lion monstrous lion defeated by Heracles
  • Nuloi - African tribe with backwards eight-toed feet
  • nymph - female nature spirit
  • nereid - sea nymphs
  • odontotyrannus - giant black amphibian with three horns; could swallow elephant; lived in Ganges
  • onocentaur (2nd c) - centaur that is part donkey instead of part horse
  • ophiotaurus - bull-serpent hybrid; slain by titans
  • Orthus - two-headed hellhound brother of Cerberus
  • Pandae - large-eared Indian tribe; possibly same as Panotii
  • Pegasus - winged horse, born of Medusa
  • peryton - legendary birds of Atlantis; stag-bird hybrid; casts strange shadow
  • phantom - ghost or phantasm; illusionary apparition
  • pygmies - tiny race (dwarf-like)
  • Python - she-dragon that guarded Delphi for Gaea
  • rizos - black dog
  • satyr - male nature spirits; goat-like after conflated with Roman Faunus
  • Sciritae - Indian tribe with snake nostrils
  • Scolopendra - sea monster with hairy nostrils and webbed feet
  • Scylla - sea monster; six heads; canine legs, cat's tails
  • silenoi - drunk followers of Dionysus
  • siren - winged maidens of sea; songs draw sailors to deaths
  • Skorpios - giant scorpion Gaea sent to kill Orion
  • Struthopodes - Indian tribe with very large feet for men and very small feet for women
  • Stymphalian birds - razor-winged birds of Ares that eat people
  • Syrbotae - twelve-foot tall African tribe
  • taraxippi - ghosts that frighten horses
  • tauros aithiopikos - Ethiopian bulls with hides immune to steel
  • telchines - mermen with dog heads; poisonous gaze; good with metal and magic; lived in Crete, Rhodes, Cyprus; the gods scattered them when they abducted Aphrodite
  • Teumessian fox - giant fox that couldn't be caught; fox spirit (similar to Japanese kitsune)
  • titan - first gods/giants, overthrown by younger gods and thrown into Tartarus; primal concepts (sun, time, etc.); possibly with lower bodies of snakes
  • triton - sea spirits; mermen; escorts to the nereids
  • tympaniaosis - vampire that swells like a balloon
  • unicorn - horse with one horn; pure; horn cures poison
  • vrykolakas - vampire or other undead troublemaker
  • were-boar - also found in Turkey
  • werewolf/lycanthrope - appear in many cultures; first recorded is Lycaon (cursed by Zeus)
  • ypotryll (Medieval) - humped camel body, boar head, ox legs, serpent tail
  • Zelus - demon of jealousy; hag that fed on serpents

Italian

  • ant-lion/myrmecoleon - offspring of lion and ant; ant body, lion head; ant body cannot digest lion's food, so it starves; otherwise a giant ant that eats other ants
  • cynoprosopi - winged dragons with dog's head that lives in Sahara; eats antelope, communicates with hisses and sharp barks
  • fata - faeries
  • fauni ficari (Scilian) - bloodthirsty evil spirits that inhabit fig trees or take the form of nuns
  • flying fish (16th c) - five foot long, giant head with vertical eyes, two mouths, breathing holes in throat; green skin
  • foliots - spirits that shapeshift into crows, hares, black dogs; behave like poltergeists
  • fuoco fatuo - ghost light
  • gaines - wood elves; dress in peasant clothes with animal pelt hats; can divine the future
  • gryllus/grillus/Stomach Faces (Mediterranean) - man-beast hybrid with second face in stomach
  • hippogriff - invented for Orlando Furioso; cross between horse & griffin
  • jaculus/iaculus - winged serpent; may have forelegs; lurked in trees and launched itself onto back of victims like a javelin
  • lupo manaro - werewolf
  • monociello - little monk dwarf with sandals, a staff, and a scarlet habit
  • painajainen - small white horse faeries of the Alps; give children nightmares
  • papstesel/Pope Ass - woman with one human arm, one elephant trunk; one eagle leg, one cow; donkey head with bearded man's face behind; serpent head at end of tail
  • salvanelli - wood elves that live in cracks of bark of oak trees; pixie-like tiny people
  • scultone (Sardinian) - basilisk dragon that killed with gaze

Roman

  • abarimon - people with backwards feet; live in Himalayas
  • achlis - elk with lip so large it had to move backwards while grazing; no joints in hind legs
  • arimaspi/arimaspians - Scythian race with one eye; attacked griffins for gold
  • basilisk/basili-coc - king of serpents; kills with glance; poison so deadly it trails behind it; related to cockatrice (possibly same as)
  • blemmyes - people in Ethiopia/Numibia; no heads but eyes and mouth in chest; later described as giants
  • bonnacon/bonaconn/bonasus/bonachus - Asian scrublands animal; bovine with horse body; giant inward curving horns; if chased expelled vast amounts of dung
  • Cacus - son Vulcan; fire monster (giant/troll)
  • cartazonon - yellow-red unicorn with black horn that lives in deserts/mountains of India; aggressive , especially towards lions
  • Carthiginian Serpent - serpent dragon
  • catoblepas - Ethiopian water buffalo monster; hog's head, very heavy, always looks down; death gaze
  • crocotta - dog-wolf in India; digs up dead; eats dogs and men; imitates human cry
    • leucrocotta - offspring of crocotta and a lion; imitates human voice; lion-stag cross
  • echeneis/remora - six inch long sea serpent that would latch onto a ship's hull and hold it in place; inhabited polar seas, could freeze air; enemy of salamander; possibly inhabits Indian Ocean
  • putto - winged love spirits; same as Greek erotes
  • genius - male spirit (female is juno); personal or of a place/object; sometimes appears as winged youth
  • genius loci - protective spirit of a place
    • faun - woodland genii; eventually equated to satyrs; followers Bacchus; goat legs and hooves
  • graces - same as Greek Charities; maidens of gifts, charms, and arts
  • gryps/grypes - griffins or horses with eagle heads; guarded Scythian gold
  • lares - household gods/ghosts; opposite of larvae
  • larvae/lemures - malignant ghosts
  • manes/Di Manes - ghosts of loved ones; minor spirits similar to lares
  • monoceros - body of horse, feet of elephant, tail of boar, deer's head with straight black horn; similar to unicorn
  • murex - purple fish that could latch onto a ship (like echeneis)
  • panotti - race with ears as large as their whole bodies; live in Scythia or the Orkneys
  • parandrus/parandus/parander - in between a bear and an ibex; shaggy pelt, large horns, cloven hooves, deer legs; could blend into environment like a chameleon; said to live in Ethiopia
  • parcae - the moirae
  • penates/Di Penates - gods of the storeroom, similar to lares
  • sciapod/skiapode - race with only one leg
  • scitalis - dragon, possibly with wings; forelegs but no hindlegs; multi-colored scales so beautiful it mesmerized its prey and allowed the slow scitalis to catch them; glow with heat and shed skin even in winter
  • seps - small snake whose venom destroys flesh and bone
  • strix/striga/strigae - nocturnal bird that feed on flesh and blood like a vampire; owl-like; originally women turned into wild animals for cannibalism
  • tarandrus - ox that can change colors
  • tragopan - giant brown bird with ram horns and purple head feathers that lived in Ethiopia
  • yale/centicore/eale/jall - beast that lives in Middle East and India (or Ethiopia); black or brown goat as big as horse; spotted, with big horns, boar tail and jaws; possibly elephant head; can adjust its horns in direction; possibly an antelope-goat

Slovenian

  • kresnik - vampire; enemy of the kudlak; good vampire, aided by forces of light
  • kudlak - version of Croatian vukodlak