Across the world, ancient cultures came up with monsters capable of toppling worlds and destroying gods. These mythological creatures were of amazing size and power, and trying to imagine them in today’s world is a little intimidating. Here are five mythological creatures that could do some serious damage to our twenty-first-century society:
The ferocious giant wolf responsible for the end of the world in Norse Mythology. According to legend, he bit off Týr’s hand, and was imprisoned beneath the world, but will eventually break loose and wreck havoc throughout the known world. Norse mythology dictates that he will eventually kill Odin, the king god, and then be killed by Odin’s son Vidar. His wolf children, Sköll and Hati Hróòvitnisson, devour the sun and the moon. A wolf large and powerful enough to have babies that eat astral bodies, bite off a god’s hand, and then consume the king of gods ought to be able to handle modern civilization in a choice few mouthfuls. He’s one mythological creature that should not be trifled with.
With the fearsome reputation as the direst of monsters in Greek mythology, Typhon was the terror of the Olympian Pantheon. According to legend, he was of insane proportions – as tall as the stars, stretching from east to west. His lower half was enormous viper coils, and his whole body was covered in wings and dragon heads. His eyes could flash fire, and he sired sever other vicious mythological creatures, like Cerberus and the Sphinx. Typhon was ordered to destroy Zeus by his mother Gaia, as punishment for Zeus’ actions against the Titans. An epic battle raged between the gargantuan monster and the king of the gods, but eventually Zeus imprisoned Typhon beneath Mount Etna, a volcano that is still active in Sicily. If Typon were ever to “escape,” it pretty much stands to reason that most of humanity would be completely destroyed. A giant winged viper dragon? Come on. He probably eats fighter jets for breakfast.
Thunderbirds are prevalent throughout Native North American culture, from the Pacific Northwest, to the Great Plains, and down to the Southwest. Although there are distinctions in the number and their characteristics, every group believed that Thunderbird’s wings caused thunder when they flew, that their eyes shot lightening and that they could create storms and summon clouds. Depending on the story, Thunderbird could be one god-like entity, or an entire species of shape-shifting demi-gods that could take their feathers on and off like blankets. Regardless of the myth associated with them, nobody wanted to mess with Thunderbirds. A flock of thunderbirds could probably take down most of the United States, considering how dependant we are on electricity. And let’s not even start thinking about torrential rain and worldwide flooding.
These are legendary beetles from Japan that cause earthquakes. The myth states that their bodies generate sound waves that resonate at the perfect frequency, and make certain minerals collapse in seconds. In a country with as much geological upheaval as Japan, death by earthquake is a real fear. No bigger than a human fist, they are said to have ten spider legs, a dragon head and a scaly body. This myth was popularized around the earthquake of Edo (now Tokyo) in 1855, when thousands were killed, and tens of thousands of houses were destroyed. So imagine earthquake beetles living under all of North America, and imagine the kind of destruction that on a continent-wide scale. It would be tough times for planet earth.
An enormous creature referred to in the Bible. It’s commonly agreed upon that The Leviathan is a mythological sea monster of gargantuan size and incredible power. Even before the Bible skyrocketed this serpent to mythological creature stardom, similar snakelike creatures already had a long history in Sumerian mythology. In particular, a monster named Lotan took part in an epic battle between gods, and is described in language akin to what the Bible uses. Just the sheer strength and size of this animal is enough to make any reader think: “If it got mad, we’d be in big trouble.” It could destroy small islands, port cities, and probably cause tsunamis that would wipe out coastline and cause massive earthquakes. Good luck surviving the wrath of the Leviathan, unless you live in the Himalayas. Then you MIGHT be ok.
We feel pretty secure in our modern ways, but in ancient belief systems, people actually thought that mythological creatures or deities were attacking them in the forms of storms, earthquakes or tsunamis. They attributed wrath or benevolence to natural occurrences that today we observe and prepare for with science. The distinctions between ancient and modern interpretation of events show just how drastically people’s ways of thinking have changed.
Rachel is an expert Payday Loan blogger who can write on any numbers of topics, including, but not limited to, mythology and astrophysics.