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Dragons

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I've found alot of info on the net on dragons so I figured I'd post some information about them.

Chinese Dragons

Chinese dragons are snake-like with four short legs. Chinese dragons have five toes verses the Korean Dragon with four toes and the Japanese with only three. Unlike other dragons of legend they do not have wings. The five toed dragons are a symbol of power. The Chinese dragon is often depicted as either being red or gold, although other colors are found. The Chinese term for the dragons is Lung. There are four major categories of Lung.

1.Tien-Lung, The Celestial Dragon, who protects the place of Gods.

2.Shen-Lung, The Spiritual Dragon, who controls wind and rain.

3.Ti-lung, The Earth Dragon , which controls rivers, and water on the earth.

4.Futs-Lung, The Underworld Dragon, which guards precious metals and gems.

European Dragons

These dragons are found in many notible medieval, Greek, Roman, and Norse legends. The basic characteristic of the European dragon is that they have wings. They can have two or four legs depending on the type and can be of any color. Many of these dragons breath fire. European dragons tend to be thought of as greedy and evil.

Names of some European Dragons

Apocalyptic beast. ~ {Biblical - Most likely Middle East} A creature mentioned in the Book of Revelation in the Bible. It has two horns, speaks like a dragon, and bears the mystical number of the devil.

Cecrops ~ {Greek} The mythical founder of Athens; first king of Attica; represented as half human, half dragon; credited with inventing writing and establishing marriage and burial customs. .

Draco ~ {Greek} A constellation in the north containing the star of the north pole of the ecliptic. Legend states this constllation was named after the Athenian statesman and lawgiver Draco or Dracon.

Fafnir ~ {Norse mythology} A dragon; guardian of the treasure later known as the Nibelung hoard.

Hydra ~ {Greek mythology} A gigantic monster resembling a dragon with several heads (usually nine, though the number varies), the center one of which is immortal. It is said to haunt the marshes of Lerna near Argos. The destruction of the hydra was one of the 12 labors of Hercules. When one of the hydra's heads was cut off two grew in its place.

Leviathan ~{Bible, Job ix, 13 and Isa. xxvii, 1} Hebrew name for sea monster; also dragon of turmoil which contested against God.

Tatzlwyrm ~ {Germanic legend} A winged, fire-breathing dragon monster.

Wyvern ~ {U.K.} A winged, two-legged dragon with a barbed tail. The wyvern often appears on heraldic shields and symbolizes guardianship.

Jormungand (Norse Legend) The world serpent that dwelled at the bottom of the sea,and that encircled the whole world. It was to rise against the gods at Ragnarok,helping the Fenris Wolf and Surt,and the other enemies of the gods,to destroy both Asgard and Midgard.

Dragons of India (From the acounts of a Greek traveler)

The whole of India is filled with dragons of enormous size; for they dwell in the mountains, marshes, and not a single mountain is without one. Now the marsh dragons are sluggish in their habits and are thirty feet long, and have no crest standing up on their heads, but in this respect resemble the she-dragons. Their backs however are very black, with fewer scales on them than the other kinds.

Dragons along the foothills and the mountain peaks make their way to the plains after their quarry, and prey upon all the creatures in the marshes; for they can move faster than the wind, so that nothing escapes them. These actually have a crest, smaller when they are young; but as they reach their full size, it grows with them and extends to a great height, at which time the dragons crest turns red and they grow spines on their backs. This kind also have beards, a long graceful neck, silver scales, and the pupils of their eyes consist of a fiery stone. They say that the dragons eye has an uncanny power for many secret purposes. The plains specimen falls the prize of the hunters if they are clever enough to capture the beast and those who capture the dragons are rewarded by getting the eyes and skin and teeth. In most respects they resemble the large lizards, but they are slighter in build and 'flexible, and they have teeth as sharp and indestructible as those of the largest fishes.

Now the dragons of the mountains have scales of a golden color, are larger than the plains dragons, and they have golden bushy beards. Their eyebrows are more prominent than those of the plain with their eyes sunk deeper under the brow which emits a terrible and ruthless glance. Their crests are all fiery red and flashes a fire brighter than a torch. Hunters prize the golden skin more, so they catch them in the following manner: They embroider golden runes on a scarlet cloak, which they lay in front of the animal's burrow. The runes will charm the creature to sleep. These runes induce the dragon to stretch his neck out of his burrow and fall asleep over them. Then the lndians fall upon him as he lies there, and dispatch him with blows of their axes. They then cut off the head and despoil it of its gems. And they say that in the heads of the mountain dragons are mystical stones that if set in a ring give the wearer great powers. Most often the Indian, in spite of his ax and his cunning, is caught by the dragon, who carries him off into his lair for a meal. It is nearly impossible however to ascertain the number of years that these creatures live.

Some Egyptian Dragons

Apep: With the approach of night the strength of the Ra, the sun god of Heliopolis, diminished. The solar barque "entered the realm of night and met the powers of darkness. The chief of these was the serpent Apep who tried to swallow the barque; a nightly struggle ensued, and when the sun reappeared on the eastern horizon the next day prayers of thankfulness were offered that Ra was triumphant and the sun would continue to shine."

Typhon: It was the mystery of the god Sol, and inscribed on a black image of Isis. The Divine Boy was chased by the cruel Typhon. In an Egyptian legend the dragon is said to pursue Thuesis (Isis) while she is endeavoring to protect her son.

African Dragons

Amphisbaena: Originating in Africa, this was a two headed dragon (one at the front, and one on the end of its tail). The front head would hold the tail (or neck as the case may be) in its mouth, creating a circle that allowed it to roll.

Babylonian Dragons

Tiamat: Primeval Chaos, bearer of the skies and the earth. The clamor of the younger gods disturbed her, but she continued to indulge them. When the others suggested that they kill the younger gods, she grew furious, calmed down and rejected the plan. Her restless subservient gods goaded her into action after her son is slain. They prepared to wage war against the other gods. As Mother Hubur, the underworld river, who fashions all things, she bore giant snakes with venom for blood, and cloaked dragons with a godlike radiance yet with a terrible visage, for the war. She rallied a horned serpent, a mushussu-dragon, a lahmu-hero, a ugallu-demon, a rabid dog, a scorpion-man, umu-demons, a fish-man, a bull-man, and eleven others underneath her champion, Qingu. She gave Qingu the Tablet of Destinies to facilitate his command and attack. To this day they battle still.