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** Drakainas were a frequent monster archetype in Greek myth--the word means "she-dragon" or "female dragon" and for a while that's exactly how they were depicted; however, later accounts depicted drakainas as [[SnakePeople humanoid monsters with serpent-like qualities]], sometimes to the point of being {{Cute Monster Girl}}s. Given what the name means, this may have also been a form of BizarreSexualDimorphism. Monsters of this variety included the MotherOfAThousandYoung Echidna (who, incidentally, was also the mother of the aforementioned Hydra, Chimera, Ladon and dragon guarding the Golden Fleece), Scylla (a multi-headed sea monster), Kampe (the EldritchAbomination that guarded the Cyclopes and Hekatoncheires after Kronos imprisoned them in Tartarus) and an unnamed drakaina who seduced Heracles. In some myths, Python was one of these as well.


* As basically stated on the main page, and to make things quick and easy, ''any'' large or dangerous reptilian creature will be called a dragon by folklorists. Entire books have been written on the subject.

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* As basically stated on the main page, and to make things quick and easy, ''any'' ''[[CallAPegasusAHippogriff any]]'' large or dangerous reptilian creature will be called a dragon by folklorists. Entire books have been written on the subject.


** The Ladon was a similar monster encountered by Hercules when he went to get the Golden Apples of the Hesperides for one of his labours, except it also had one hundred venomous heads. It was so badass that apparently [[AlwaysABiggerFish even Hercules couldn't beat it.]]

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** The Ladon was a similar monster encountered by Hercules when he went to get the Golden Apples of the Hesperides for one of his labours, except it also had one hundred venomous heads. It In at least one version, it was so badass that apparently [[AlwaysABiggerFish even Hercules couldn't beat it.]]it]], though in others Hercules did kill it with a bow and arrows.


** Apocrypha of the book of Daniel tells a story in which Daniel kills a dragon being worshiped as an idol by the Babylonians, who punish him by famously throwing him into the lions' den. Cryptozoologists and creationists have drawn parallels between the dragon with the Mushussu/Sirrush found on Babylonians reliefs, as well as the alleged LivingDinosaurs of the Congo.
* Then there was that thing that Daniel killed, mentioned in the apocryphal book of "Bel and the Dragon". The legend is he killed a dragon without a weapon, by making it swallow a ball of pitch, tallow, and other flammable substances.

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** Apocrypha of the * The apocryphal book of "Bel and the Dragon" about Daniel tells a story in which Daniel kills he killed a dragon being (by making it swallow a ball of pitch, tallow, and other flammable substances) who was worshiped as an idol by the Babylonians, who punish in turn punished him by famously throwing him into the lions' den. a den of lions. Cryptozoologists and creationists have drawn parallels between the dragon with the Mushussu/Sirrush found on Babylonians reliefs, as well as the alleged LivingDinosaurs of the Congo.
* Then there was that thing that Daniel killed, mentioned in the apocryphal book of "Bel and the Dragon". The legend is he killed a dragon without a weapon, by making it swallow a ball of pitch, tallow, and other flammable substances.
Congo.


** Worth noting that as Buddhism brought the Naga to China and Japan, the Naga and local dragons began to merge. The Garuda, historical enemy to the Naga, became the enemy of dragons as well, the Dragon-Horse in JourneyToTheWest ascends into a Naga, etc.

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** Worth noting that as Buddhism brought the Naga to China and Japan, the Naga and local dragons began to merge. The Garuda, historical enemy to the Naga, became the enemy of dragons as well, the Dragon-Horse in JourneyToTheWest Literature/JourneyToTheWest ascends into a Naga, etc.

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** Worth noting that as Buddhism brought the Naga to China and Japan, the Naga and local dragons began to merge. The Garuda, historical enemy to the Naga, became the enemy of dragons as well, the Dragon-Horse in JourneyToTheWest ascends into a Naga, etc.


* As basically stated on the main page, and to make things quick and easy, ''any'' large or dangerous reptilian creature will be called a dragon by folklorists. Entire books have been written on the subject.



* The Nagas of Myth/HinduMythology (and many other parts of Asia) are sometimes called dragons, although they're more like serpent deities. Nonetheless, a few scholars have drawn parallels to Chinese Dragons in how they are depicted (associated with water and weather, supernaturally powerful but fickle, long snake-like bodies, etc.), which does lead some credence to the claim.



** Giant reptilian water monsters (often collectively called "Horned Serpents") are a recurrent element of Native American legends across the continental United States, usually being depicted as the mortal enemies of the {{Thunderbird}}s. Some folklorists believe they were based on the fossilized remains of dinosaurs, pterosaurs, and ancient marine reptiles.



** The Ladon was a similar monster encountered by Hercules when he went to get the Golden Apples of the Hesperides for one of his labours, except it also had one hundred venomous heads. It was so bad ass that apparently [[AlwaysABiggerFish even Hercules couldn't beat it.]]

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** The Ladon was a similar monster encountered by Hercules when he went to get the Golden Apples of the Hesperides for one of his labours, except it also had one hundred venomous heads. It was so bad ass badass that apparently [[AlwaysABiggerFish even Hercules couldn't beat it.]]


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** Cetus was a huge sea dragon sent by Poseidon to kill the princess Andromeda in retribution for her mother, the queen Cassiopeia, boasting her daughter to be more beautiful than Poseidon's wife Amphitrite (until Perseus turned it to stone using {{Medusa}}'s head). Interestingly, it was said to have appeared in Joppa, the same region where medieval European legends said St. George slew the dragon, leading some to suggest a connection between St. George's dragon and Cetus.


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** Another dragon-like Fearsome Critter is the the Gowrow of Arkansas' Ozark Mountains, which doesn't have wings or breathe fire but it does possess huge tusks like those of an overgrown warthog and a tail that ends in a razor-sharp blade. One was allegedly killed by hunters in 1897 and then sent to the Smithsonian for study, only for the carcass to never reach its destination and be lost.


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* The famous Roman naturalist, Pliny the Elder, claimed that Africa and India were home to huge dragons that specialized in killing elephants by coiling their bodies around the animals and crushing them to death. However, he said that the typical result was that the deceased elephant would collapse on top of the constricting dragon, killing both combatants. It's generally believed these days that Pliny was probably describing a grossly exaggerated version of African and Indian rock pythons (which, while certainly big snakes, are not capable of killing elephants).


** Fáfnirwas a man (or giant or dwarf, depending on the source) who turned himself into an ''ormr'', a mighty serpent or dragon that was either just wingless or entirely limbless, so that he could better guard an enormous [[DragonHoard pile of treasure]]. Sigurðr killed him by stabbing him to the heart through his belly, and narrowly avoided being killed by poisonous blood. Sigurðr also gained the ability to understand the language of the birds by tasting blood from the dragon's heart.-- Different from most other dragons of old literature, Fáfnir was an intelligent being who could (and did) talk, not a mere beast. Thus, Fáfnir is probably the TropeMaker for intelligent, talking dragons -- particularly via Music/RichardWagner's ''Theatre/{{Siegfried}}'', where the story is retold rather faithfully, and Creator/JRRTolkien, whose dragons [[Literature/TheSilmarillion Glaurung]] and [[Literature/TheHobbit Smaug]] are obviously inspired by Fáfnir. What is usually not copied is that Fáfnir could ''not'' breathe fire, only poison.

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** Fáfnirwas Fáfnir was a man (or giant or dwarf, depending on the source) who turned himself into an ''ormr'', a mighty serpent or dragon that was either just wingless or entirely limbless, so that he could better guard an enormous [[DragonHoard pile of treasure]]. Sigurðr killed him by stabbing him to the heart through his belly, and narrowly avoided being killed by poisonous blood. Sigurðr also gained the ability to understand the language of the birds by tasting blood from the dragon's heart.-- Different from most other dragons of old literature, Fáfnir was an intelligent being who could (and did) talk, not a mere beast. Thus, Fáfnir is probably the TropeMaker for intelligent, talking dragons -- particularly via Music/RichardWagner's ''Theatre/{{Siegfried}}'', where the story is retold rather faithfully, and Creator/JRRTolkien, whose dragons [[Literature/TheSilmarillion Glaurung]] and [[Literature/TheHobbit Smaug]] are obviously inspired by Fáfnir. What is usually not copied is that Fáfnir could ''not'' breathe fire, only poison.

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** [[MixAndMatchCreature The Chimera]] is sometimes described as a "proto dragon" by mythologists. While her only draconic traits are her fiery breath and having a reptile included in one of the three animals that made her up, the tale seems to have had a rather large influence on later European dragon slaying myths.

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** Several Old Testament books casually mentioned dragons as if they were a real animal. This may be a BlindIdiotTranslation however, as the Hebrew word used is ''tannin'' which can apparently also mean crocodiles and is very similar to ''Tanim'' meaning Jackals.


* In Abrahamic Mythology, the [[OurAngelsAreDifferent Seraphim]] are occasionally described as serpent or dragon-like, when not being six winged {{Humanoid Abomination}}s.
* ''Literature/TheBible'':

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* In Abrahamic Mythology, mythology, the [[OurAngelsAreDifferent Seraphim]] are occasionally described as serpent or dragon-like, when not being six winged {{Humanoid Abomination}}s.
* ''Literature/TheBible'':Literature/TheBible:



* Níðhöggr from Myth/NorseMythology chews on the roots of [[WorldTree Yggdrasill]] and devour human corpses (not living humans though). It is also [[SerpentOfImmortality one of the few beings that will survive]] [[TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt Ragnarök]].
* Fáfnir, also from [[Myth/NorseMythology Norse legend]] (told mainly in ''Literature/PoeticEdda'' and ''Literature/VolsungaSaga''), was a man (or giant or dwarf, depending on the source) who turned himself into an ''ormr'', a mighty serpent or dragon that was either just wingless or entirely limbless, so that he could better guard an enormous [[DragonHoard pile of treasure]]. Sigurðr killed him by stabbing him to the heart through his belly, and narrowly avoided being killed by poisonous blood. Sigurðr also gained the ability to understand the language of the birds by tasting blood from the dragon's heart.-- Different from most other dragons of old literature, Fáfnir was an intelligent being who could (and did) talk, not a mere beast. Thus, Fáfnir is probably the TropeMaker for intelligent, talking dragons -- particularly via Music/RichardWagner's ''Theatre/{{Siegfried}}'', where the story is retold rather faithfully, and Creator/JRRTolkien, whose dragons [[Literature/TheSilmarillion Glaurung]] and [[Literature/TheHobbit Smaug]] are obviously inspired by Fáfnir. What is usually not copied is that Fáfnir could ''not'' breathe fire, only poison.

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* Myth/NorseMythology:
**
Níðhöggr from Myth/NorseMythology chews on the roots of [[WorldTree Yggdrasill]] and devour human corpses (not living humans though). It is also [[SerpentOfImmortality one of the few beings that will survive]] [[TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt Ragnarök]].
* Fáfnir, also from [[Myth/NorseMythology Norse legend]] (told mainly in ''Literature/PoeticEdda'' and ''Literature/VolsungaSaga''), was ** Fáfnirwas a man (or giant or dwarf, depending on the source) who turned himself into an ''ormr'', a mighty serpent or dragon that was either just wingless or entirely limbless, so that he could better guard an enormous [[DragonHoard pile of treasure]]. Sigurðr killed him by stabbing him to the heart through his belly, and narrowly avoided being killed by poisonous blood. Sigurðr also gained the ability to understand the language of the birds by tasting blood from the dragon's heart.-- Different from most other dragons of old literature, Fáfnir was an intelligent being who could (and did) talk, not a mere beast. Thus, Fáfnir is probably the TropeMaker for intelligent, talking dragons -- particularly via Music/RichardWagner's ''Theatre/{{Siegfried}}'', where the story is retold rather faithfully, and Creator/JRRTolkien, whose dragons [[Literature/TheSilmarillion Glaurung]] and [[Literature/TheHobbit Smaug]] are obviously inspired by Fáfnir. What is usually not copied is that Fáfnir could ''not'' breathe fire, only poison.poison.
** In the battle of Ragnarök Thor will die of the poisonous breath of Jörmungandr the World-Serpent, but only after he succeeds in slaying Jörmungandr.



* ''Again'' from Norse myth, in the battle of Ragnarök Thor will die of the poisonous breath of Jörmungandr the World-Serpent, but only after he succeeds in slaying Jörmungandr.



* Native American myth does not technically have "dragons" per se, but they do have very dragon-like creatures, albeit far weirder than most. For example, the Unhcegila, which looks like a giant horned snake with seven glowing spots. If you look at it, you and your entire family will die right there on the spot. But, if you manage to kill it, it gives you its crystalline heart, which will grant you your heart's desire. But it will also [[ArtifactOfDoom try and make you resurrect Uncegila, and the whole "give you your hearts desire thing" will make your life meaningless.]]

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* Native American myth Myth/NativeAmericanMythology does not technically have "dragons" per se, but they do have very dragon-like creatures, albeit far weirder than most. For example, the most:
** The
Unhcegila, which looks like a giant horned snake with seven glowing spots. If you look at it, you and your entire family will die right there on the spot. But, if you manage to kill it, it gives you its crystalline heart, which will grant you your heart's desire. But it will also [[ArtifactOfDoom try and make you resurrect Uncegila, and the whole "give you your hearts desire thing" will make your life meaningless.]]



* Filipino mythology gives us the ''bakunawa'', a sea serpent with a mouth as big as a lake (in the Philippines, the biggest one is Laguna de Bay, 911.7 square kilometers, or approximately five times the size of Brooklyn), a blood-red tongue, the whiskers and gills of a catfish, and two pairs of wings: one large and gray as ash, another small and further down its body. The ''bakunawa'' is the guardian of the spirit world, but has the unfortunate vice of attempting to ''swallow the moon'' causing eclipses.

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* Filipino mythology gives us the ''bakunawa'', Myth/PhilippineMythology:
** The ''bakunawa'' is
a sea serpent with a mouth as big as a lake (in the Philippines, the biggest one is Laguna de Bay, 911.7 square kilometers, or approximately five times the size of Brooklyn), a blood-red tongue, the whiskers and gills of a catfish, and two pairs of wings: one large and gray as ash, another small and further down its body. The ''bakunawa'' is the guardian of the spirit world, but has the unfortunate vice of attempting to ''swallow the moon'' causing eclipses.


** A recently rediscovered Filipino dragon-type is no other than ''[[NeverSmileAtACrocodile crocodiles.]]'' The closest thing to a pan-Filipino motif is that crocodiles (especially the gigantic saltwater crocodiles roaming the islands) were routinely seen as 1) powerful {{Nature Spirit}}s or outright {{Physical God}}s (naturally attuned to water), 2) the {{Reincarnation}} of tribal ancestors, and obviously, 3) [[DinosaursAreDragons dragons,]] to the point where the Tagalog word for crocodile (''buwaya'') was frequently used as a synonym for "dragon" in old texts. A Tagalog myth states that a huge magical crocodile/dragon literally called [[AKindOfOne the Buwaya]] acts as a {{Psychopomp}}, by ferrying recently-deceased souls to the afterlife. In a strange blend of Eastern and Western dragon-types, some tribes believed that crocodiles could LevelUp INTO dragons... by means of HumanSacrifice, since [[SoulEating they needed a human soul.]]

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** A recently rediscovered Filipino dragon-type is no other than ''[[NeverSmileAtACrocodile crocodiles.]]'' The closest thing to a pan-Filipino motif mythos is that crocodiles (especially crocodiles--especially the gigantic saltwater crocodiles roaming the islands) were islands--were routinely seen as 1) powerful {{Nature Spirit}}s or outright {{Physical God}}s (naturally attuned to water), 2) the {{Reincarnation}} of tribal ancestors, and obviously, 3) [[DinosaursAreDragons dragons,]] to the point where the Tagalog word for crocodile (''buwaya'') was frequently used as a synonym for "dragon" in old texts. A Tagalog myth states that a huge magical crocodile/dragon literally called [[AKindOfOne the Buwaya]] acts as a {{Psychopomp}}, by ferrying recently-deceased souls to the afterlife. In a strange blend of Eastern and Western dragon-types, some tribes believed that crocodiles could LevelUp INTO dragons... by means of HumanSacrifice, since [[SoulEating they needed a human soul.]]

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** A recently rediscovered Filipino dragon-type is no other than ''[[NeverSmileAtACrocodile crocodiles.]]'' The closest thing to a pan-Filipino motif is that crocodiles (especially the gigantic saltwater crocodiles roaming the islands) were routinely seen as 1) powerful {{Nature Spirit}}s or outright {{Physical God}}s (naturally attuned to water), 2) the {{Reincarnation}} of tribal ancestors, and obviously, 3) [[DinosaursAreDragons dragons,]] to the point where the Tagalog word for crocodile (''buwaya'') was frequently used as a synonym for "dragon" in old texts. A Tagalog myth states that a huge magical crocodile/dragon literally called [[AKindOfOne the Buwaya]] acts as a {{Psychopomp}}, by ferrying recently-deceased souls to the afterlife. In a strange blend of Eastern and Western dragon-types, some tribes believed that crocodiles could LevelUp INTO dragons... by means of HumanSacrifice, since [[SoulEating they needed a human soul.]]


** Then there's the Laidly Worm, where the princess ''is'' the dragon; the Lambton Worm, which grew from a creature no larger than your thumb and which laid a curse upon nine generations of its slayer's family; and the Linton Worm, whose death throes created the "Wormington".

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** Then there's the Laidly Worm, where the princess ''is'' the dragon; the Literature/{{the Lambton Worm, Worm}}, which grew from a creature no larger than your thumb and which laid a curse upon nine generations of its slayer's family; and the Linton Worm, whose death throes created the "Wormington".


** Apocrypha of the book of Daniel tells a story in which Daniel kills a dragon being worshiped as an idol by the Babylonians, who punish him by famously throwing him into the lions' den. Cryptozoologists and creationists have drawn parallels between the dragon with the Mushussu/Sirrush found on Babylonians reliefs, as well as the alleged LivingDinosaurs of the Congo.



* African LivingDinosaurs such as the Mokele-Mbembe have been speculated by some cryptozoologists to have been [[DinosaursAreDragons the inspiration for dragons]], as popularized by French cryptozoologist Bernard Heuvelmans in his book ''Les derniers dragons d'Afrique'' (''The Last Dragons of Africa''). Biblical stories of dragons, such as the one of Daniel, as well as the Mushussu have been used as evidence for these claims, with the theory being that the LivingDinosaurs were transported to the Middle East from Africa by merchants or explorers.
* Mesopotamian reliefs often depict a dragon known as the Mushussu (or Sirrush), a scaly beast with an eagle's hindlimbs, a lion's forelegs, a serpentine head and body, and horns. Famously depicted on the Ishtar Gate of Babylon, there are claims by cryptozoologists (and some creationists) that the Mushussu represents a real animal, due to the fact that very-much real lions and bulls are also on the Ishtar Gate and physical similarities with the LivingDinosaurs reported in Africa.



** Christian French folklore provides several other unique-looking dragons like the Tarasque, a six-legged turtle-like monster with a leonine head; the Gargouille, a serpent that constantly gushed water from its mouth ("gargoyle" and "gargle" are derivative from its name); and the Peluda, a survivor of Noah's Flood with a snake's head, turtle's feet, and a body covered in venomous quills it could hurl at enemies.

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** Christian French folklore provides several other unique-looking dragons like the Tarasque, a six-legged turtle-like monster with a leonine head; head (the inspiration for the better-known D&D creature); the Gargouille, a serpent that constantly gushed water from its mouth ("gargoyle" and "gargle" are derivative from its name); and the Peluda, a survivor of Noah's Flood with a snake's head, turtle's feet, and a body covered in venomous quills it could hurl at enemies.

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