So, someone asked about monsters, and since I’ve been hoarding this long list of mythical beings for one of my own stories for the last like, three years, I decided to finally share it! This list is divided into categories for specific types of creatures. Each creature is accompanied by a definition or description, where it’s from, and other useful information.
Here we go:
SPIRITS AND GHOSTS:
- Arae(Greek Mythology): Female spirits of curses, particularly curses that are placed by the dead, on the person responsible for their death.
- Banshee(Gaelic Lore): A female spirit who brings death to her victim by screeching or wailing. Often depicted wearing green or red robes, with hair being described as either orange, red or yellow to mimic the flicker of flames. Can appear as a young beautiful women, or an old and frightening ‘hag’
- Black Dog/Hell Hounds: Usually depicted as large, ghostly looking black dogs that come from hell. Typically, they roam the streets at night looking for pray to drag back to hell or devour.
- Bogle(Gaelic Lore): A ghost like being whose sole purpose is to frighten and confuse humans and other creatures.
- (El) Coco/
Cucuí (Typically Hispanic or Latin american Folklore) : A ghost like monster, much like the american boogeyman, used to strike fear into children. The description changes among different cultures. Sometimes described as ghosts with pumpkin heads, as large rattling skeletons, a female humanoid alligator like creature, or even a dragon like creature. (as a child, I imagined them more like skeleton ghosts)
- Demons : Malevolent spirits from Hell
- Fox Spirits (Popular among Asian Folklore) : The Fox Spirit or the Nine Tailed Fox is a common spirit among east Asian cultures, usually depicted as a familiar with great magic power. They are often devious or mischievous, with a bad habit of tricking people. Usually, they are also capable of shape shifting into beautiful women. They can be a good, or a bad omen. Known as the
húli jīng (fox spirit) in China, the kitsune (fox) in Japan, and the kumiho (nine-tailed fox) in Korea.
Gashadokuro(Japanese Mythology): Spirits of people who died of starvation or in battle, and did not receive a proper burial. They take the form of massive skeletons, apparently 15 times taller then the average human. They roam the world after midnight, capturing lone travelers, and biting off their heads to drink their blood. They are said to be invisible and invincible. Though they can be warded off with Shinto charms, and it’s said you can sense their presence if you hear a loud ringing in your ear.
- Ghosts: Spirits of the undead that are trapped in the world of the living. Often resemble what they looked like alive, can be good, bad or neutral.
- Grim Reaper: The Physical embodiment of death, arrives to take your soul to the after life.
- Hulder or Huldra (Scandanvian Folklore) : Beautiful, seductive, female forest spirits that are primarily human with the exception of having a cows tail. Apparently come from beneath the earth, sometimes claimed to be a forgotten child of adam and eve. They are known as coal kindles, they would watch the fires of travelers while they slept, and ensure they would not go out. Males of this species are said to be hideous, with grotesquely long noses.
- Ifrit (Middle Eastern): A death spirit believed to be drawn in by the life force or blood of the murdered. They tend to be fiery in nature(literally), and are said to either take the form of the deceased they were attracted to, or the form of Satan himself. Can be good or evil or neutral, but mainly considered to be malevolent, vengeful, evil, ruthless, or wicked.
Ittan-momen (Japanese Mythology): Now, this one sounds pretty harmless, but do not be fooled. Ittan-Momen is a sentient roll of cotton that flies through the air at night, and attacks and kills people by smothering them.
- Incubus: No, I do not mean the Rock Band. An Incubus is a male demon that lies upon it’s victim, and supposedly steals their life force by having repeated sex with them. Their female counterpart is called a succubus.
- Jinn (Arabian and Islamic mythology and theology) : Jinn, or more popularly known in western culture; the Genie, is a powerful spirit with free will, and thus can be good, evil, or neutral. Usually depicted with no spiritual form, or as humans with different animal parts, or as shadowy ghosts. Jinn play many different roles in different cultures. They are often seen as living in a parallel world to the human world.
- Keres (Greek Mythology) : Daughters of the goddess Nyx, spirits of violent or unpeaceful death.
- Kobalos (Greek Mythology) : Depicted as small, mischievous creatures that took to messing with people. They often pranked, frightened, or stole from people. In myth, they stole from Heracles while he slept. In one version, he gives them away as a present to the Lydian Queen. In another version, he forgives them, and lets them off the hook simply because he finds them amusing.
Greek myths depict the kobaloi as “impudent, thieving, droll, idle, mischievous, gnome-dwarfs”, and as “funny, little triksy elves” of a phallic nature. So they’re essentially annoying yet sort of funny gnome/elf/dwarves that resemble erect penises. Isnt mythology fun.
La Llorona aka The Weeping Women (Popular in northern and southern american folklore) : Usually the Ghost of either a women who was scorned by a man, and now she hunts for other awful men. Or, the Ghost of a women who cries as she searches for her dead children. The most traditional or typical story tells of a women who drowns her children in the river out of spite when her husband leaves her for a younger women. After realizing her children are dead, and she can not find them, she drowns herself as well. In the after life, she is not permitted to move onto heaven. Her soul will not be able to find peace until she finds her children, and thus she is doomed to wander the earth in search of them. In some stories, she will take lone children that resemble her own, and drown them in the river so they can take her children’s place.
- Lamia(Greek Mythology) : A beautiful queen of Lybia. It’s said that she was a mistress of Zues. In one version, Zues’ Jealous wife Hera steals all of Lamias children, and turns her into a demon that hunts and devours others children. Other versions say that Hera killed all of Lamias children, and driven by the grief and suffering of her loss, goes insane, and starts stealing and eating others children out of envy. The repeated horrid act turns her into a monster. There is also a myth that Hera forced her to eat her own children, then cursed her to never be able to close her eyes, so that the image of her children's death will forever haunt her. Zues later grants her the ability to remove her eyes to appease her grief. In some descriptions, she has serpent like features, or the lower half of a snake. In others, her face is distorted. No matter the story however, it’s Hera’s fault.
- Lares (Roman Mythology) : House hold or guardian spirits that each family traditionally has around their grounds. Statues of domestic Lares were typically placed at the table for family meals. Their presence and worship seemed to be very important.
- Mare(Germanic or slavic Folklore) : a Ghost/ Spirirt or Goblin that sits on the chest of sleeping victims, and forces nightmares upon them. Other legends depict them as beautiful women that go into the dreams of men and seduce them before killing them. I personally prefer the sitting goblins.
- Neck or Nokken (Germanic and Scandinavian Folklore) : Water Spirits usually depicted as a a shadowy monster lurking in the water, it’s eyes just above the surface. Other times, it’s described as a beautiful young man playing the fiddle or violin while resting in the water. Their enchanting songs drew women, men and children to them. Sometimes they are said to be peaceful, and will simply play for the humans, or possibly even move into the home of one who has fallen in love with them (though they often do not stay long), and sometimes they are said to lure people to their death with their beautiful song. Don’t know about you, but I would totally take a cute guy playing the violin underneath a water fall over a creepy water submerged shadow, any day.
- Nymph (Greek Mythology) : Minor Nature Gods or spirits that tend to animate nature, and are viewed as beautiful, and free young (typically) women. There are several different types of Nymphs; Celestial Nymphs, Land Nymphs, Wood or Forest Nymphs, Plant/Flower Nymphs, Water Nymphs, and Underworld Nymphs. The most common are Dryads, that are Nymphs of the trees. Naiads, which are fresh Water Nymphs(ponds, fountains, springs, etc), and Auras which are basically air nymphs, or breezes.
- Poltergeist: (German for Noisy Spirit or Noisy Ghost) A Ghost that is capable of physicaly capable of sitrubing the human world. They are known for hitting, biting, pinching, scratching and tripping humans. They are also known for moving or levitating objects, and making loud knocking sounds.
- Sprites: Elemental, fairy like beings that are invisible to humans. Can be good or evil or neutral. Sylphs are sprites dedicate solely to the element of Air.
Tikoloshe (Zulu Mythology) : A goblin, or dwarf like water spirit that can become invisible by drinking water. It is regarded as mischievous and evil. They can be called upon to cause trouble or to harm others. Best case scenario, they scare kids. Worst case scenario, they can bring you serious illness or even death. It’s usually described as a gremlin like demon with gauged out eyes.
HALF HUMAN/ HUMANOID CREATURES:
- Aeternae: Creatures who supposedly attacked Alexander the Great, and killed many of his men with their bony, saw like protuberances that came from their head.
Asanbosam (West African Folklore) : Hairy, ogre like vampiric creatures with iron teeth and iron hooks for feet. They live in the trees, and attack their victims from above.
- Adze (Ewe Folklore) : Another vampire like being in the form of a firefly, but will transform into a human if captured. In human form, they will possess people. People who are possessed are thought to be witches, and the people around the possessed with be affected negatively. As a firefly, they can phase through doors, and will suck the blood of sleeping people. The victims will eventually fall ill and die.
- Bisimbi Bi Masa (African Folklore) : Water Nymphs that reside in the Congo. They’re described as beautiful and seductive spirits that live in natural watery areas. They are known to cause awful skin diseases, which only their own haunting cries can cure. Which is weirdly twisted and cool?
- Brownies(Scottish FolkLore): Small, humanoid like creatures that sneak into peoples houses at night to do chores in exchange for their favorite foods. They will stop tending to a house if the owner misues them, or if their gifts of food are instead called payment.
Changeling: A fairy infant left in the place of a human infant that was kidnapped by fairies.
- Centaur (Greek Mythology) : Upper half of a man, lower half of a horse. Wild and free creatures, that tend to be good in nature. The most popular is Chiron, who was refered to as the wisest and most just of all centaurs. He trained the some of the most famous greek Heroes, such as; Achilles, Jason, Perseus, Theseus, Ajax, and some stories portray him training Heracles as well. There are several different types of Centaurs;
Ichthyocentaurs, which are centaurs who have the tails of fish, Winged Centaurs,
Onocentaur which has the bottom half of a donkey, rather then a horse, Cyprian Centaurs, which are bull-horned centaurs,
Centaurs, which had Ox horns.
- Cyclops(Greek Mythology) : Giant One eyed humanoid monsters that typically captured and ate people. Legend says no one was able to escape or hurt them.
- Dwarf: A Short, stocky, scraggly looking humanoids that typically live underground in mining communities.
- Elf: A race of humanoid creatures who typically have pointy ears, and excel in magic.
- Empusa (Greek Mythology) : A demigod or monster that drinks the blood and eating the flesh of sleeping men. They are depicted with flaming hair, and are said to have one bronze leg, and one leg of a donkey.
Erinyes or Furies (Greek Mythology) : Female deities of vengeance, there are typically three of them;
Alecto or Alekto (“endless”), Megaera (“jealous rage”), and Tisiphone or Tilphousia (“vengeful destruction”). They are depicted in several different ways. Sometime they are said to have snakes for hair, or dogs heads in place of human heads. Sometimes their skin or eyes are said to be as black as coal, and sometimes they are portrayed with bat wings. Their victims die in torture, and they are more ancient then most of the Olympian gods themselves.
- Fairy: Humanoids with great magical abilities. Legends and myths about fairies vary greatly from culture to culture. They are not always good. They have free will, and are often mischievous. Never trust a fairy.
Futakuchi-onna (Japanese Mythology) : A women with two mouths. One where it normally should be, and a second, fully functioning mouth on the back of her head, beneath her hair. It’s said that the hair parts, and the skull splits open into a mouth, and demands food. If it is not fed, it will shriek, and cause the women awful pain. This myth is apparently derived from ‘how little women eat’.
Gegenees (Greek Mythology) : Six Armed Giants
Gnome : A small, humanoid creature who lives and moves beneath the earth. I once had a whole book on gnomes, and this thing was written like they were observing some kind of animal?? Like they talked about Gnomes like they were real creatures and I was entirely shook. Did you know Gnomes only gave birth to twins? Cause I didnt. There was a whole section on the sex lives and birthing system of gnomes. I’ll never unsee that section. I gave the book to my friend, cause I’m 99% sure she’s a gnome. Never piss off a Gnome.
Goblin : A grotesque, troublesome little creature with a strong greed for gold and jewels. Very Mischievous. Goblin is probably still one of my favorite words. Say it ten times, really fast, do it.
- Golem(Jewish Folklore) : A humanoid(ish) like creature made from clay, mud, or stone that is magically animated.
- Gorgon (Greek Mythology) : The snake haired (and sometimes snake-bodied) women who could turn people to stone just by looking at them. The most Famous being Medusa.
Graeae (Greek Mythology) : Three old women who shared one tooth and one eye among them. They took turn using it. In mythology, Perseus held their eye for ransom until they told him the whereabouts of the items he needed to kill Medusa.
- Harpies( Greek Mythology) : Half bird, half human, embodiment of storm winds. They typically swooped down and dragged away (bad) humans, and carried them to their punishment.
Hecatoncheires (Greek Mythology); Because those guys with the six arms just arent enough, let me introduce you to Hecatoncheires, aka the hundred handed ones. That’s right. One Hundred Hands. They also have fifty heads, and have unimaginable strength. Thankfully, there are only three of these guys.
Hobgoblin : A type of Brownie who is inherently less helpful and more mischievous, even to the point of causing harm if antagonized.
Imp : Small, mischievous creatures who liked to play pranks on people.
Jorōgumo (Japanese Mythology): A spirit that can shape-shift into a beautiful women. Often Depicted as being half pretty lady, half terrifying spider. She’s sometimes shown controlling small, fire breathing spiders. This is the thing of my nightmares; a hot lady who turns into a partial spider, that controls other, smaller spiders that breath fire. Because pretty girls arent intimidating enough, you gotta go and mix them with spiders, right?
Manticore ( Persian Folklore) : Head of a human, body of a lion, tail of a poisonous porcupine, or a scorpion.
Mermaids and Sirens : Sea creatures with the head and torso of a woman and the tail of a fish. Sometimes good, sometimes evil. The evil ones are known for (sometimes singing) and luring sailors to their deaths, and dragging them down to the bottom of the ocean to devour them.
Minotaur (Greek Mythology): The creature with the head and legs of a bull and the torso of a man, who guarded the exit to The Labyrinth.
Moirai (Greek Mythology): The Fates. There are three of them, typically seen in white robes, and are the incarnation of Destiny. They control the thread of life for everything. They ensured the birth, life, and death of everything. Every being was at their control.
Ogre : An ugly, oversized humanoid creature with great physical strength and little intelligence. No shrek jokes, please, None.
Orc : A large, ugly humanoid similar to Goblins. They tend to be evil, brutish, aggressive and repulsive monsters. Though they are based off many other mythical beings, Orcs stem more from J.R.R Tolkeins books, and rise in fantasy games like Dungeons and Dragons and World of Warcraft.
Penanggalan (South East Asian FolkLore) : a detached female head that fly’s about on its own. As it flies, the stomach and entrails dangle below it, which apparently are apparently hit by the night light in such a way that makes them appear like fireflies.. During the day, it appears as a normal, human women. It’s said to usually be caused by witchcraft of pacts with demons.
Pixie : A small humanoid creature with pointy ears who likes to cause mischief.
Sasquatch : Large, hairy, man-like beasts that live
in the woods. Types of Sasquatch include Bigfoot, and the Yeti.
Satyr :Half-men, half-goats who were wild, lustful, and all around fun. The god Pan was one of these. Pan was the god of the wild, and apparently liked to scare the crap out of people in the forest, and that’s where the word panic comes from.
- Scorpion Man : They have another name, but it’s way long, and I can’t find it right now. But they’re men who have the head and torso of a human, and the lower half of a scorpion. They are featured in the Babylonian version of The Epic of Gilgamesh.
Shapeshifters :Humans who can willingly take the form of any animal. Honestly, the idea of shape-shifting has always weirded me out. Because honestly, it sounds painful. Like, if you shape shift into something much smaller and structurally different then you, say, a bird for example, where do your bones go? Like, i figure some of your bones shrink or stretch with you to fit the animal, but some animals don’t have the exact same amount of bones as humans, so like, where do the bones go?? I’ve been asking this since I was like then, I have received no answers. I am concerned.
Sirens : Man-eating beautiful women whose song compels men to them. Not always mermaid like creatures. Sometimes depicted as fully human, or as partially bird like.
Sphinx(Greek Mythology) : The half-human, half-lion that forces those it meets to answer its
riddles, or die. In the story of Oedipus, the riddle it gives is “What is the creature that walks on four legs in the morning, two legs at noon and three in the evening?” the answer to which is Humans. As we crawl on all fours as infants, on two legs for most of our lives, and with a cane in our old age.
Valkyries (Norse Mythology) : female divinities who choose people who died a heroic death in battle, and then guide them to Valhalla.
- Vampire: Probably one of the most famous of monsters. The undead human like creature that drinks the blood of the living.
- Wendigo/ Windigo (
Algonquian folklore) : A monster or spirit that is associated with Cannibalism, murder, and greed. They are often seen as either Humans turned into monsters by their sins, or humans that are possessed by evil spirits. Wendigos are associated with winter, wilderness, cold, cannibalism, greed, murder, famine, and starvation. They are often depicted with human, deer, or tree like features to imitate the wilderness.
- WereWolf: Yet another Classic. A human being who transforms into a wolf, or a wolf-human hybrid creature either by night, or by the full moon.
- Wraith(Scottish/ Gaelic folklore): Evil Spirits who can not pass on, and torment the living. Usually depicted as Shadow like figures.
- Zombies: The animated undead, rotting corpses who consume the flesh of the living.
ANIMAL AND BEAST LIKE MONSTERS:
- Airavata (Hindu Mythology) : The Mythical white elephant that carries the Hindu God Indrua. It is said to be spotless white, have five trunks and ten tusks.
- Basilisk : A legendary reptile who could kill a man with its stare, it’s said to be hatched by a chicken from a reptilian egg.
- Bake-kujira (Japanese mythology) : The ghostly skeleton of a dead whale that surfaces the water. It’s said that it’s presence brings a curse to either the area it’s seen, or to anyone who spots it.
Catoblepas (Greek Mythology/Ethiopia) : A creature from Ethiopia, resembling that of a buffalo or a wilder beast. It’s always looking downward, because it’s head is too heavy. In some descriptions, it’s gaze could kill you, and in others, it only ate poison vegetation, that made it’s breath poisonous as well.
Cerastes (Greek Mythology) : A serpant so flexible, it had no spine. It’s depicted as either having two large ram horns, or as having four small horns. It’s said to hide in the sand, with only it’s horns peeking through the surface, waiting for unsuspecting Prey to approach it.
Chupacabra (Latin American Folk Lore) : A monster known for feeding off of livestock, especially goats. It’s name translates to ‘Goat Sucker’. The two most common descriptions of El Chupacabre are that of a strange wild dog that is mainly hairless, with a prominent spinal ridge, sunken in eyes, and large fangs and claws. The other descriptions shows it as a large reptilian creature with leathery or scaly green/gray skin, and sharp porcupine like needles going down it’s spine. Unlike most predators, El Chupacabre drains it’s pray off their blood, and sometimes their organs, rather then eating the flesh.
Cerberus(Greek Mythology) :The three-headed dog that guards the entrance to Hades. It’s name is supposedly derived from the greek word for ‘Spotted’ or ‘Spot’. The capturing of Cerberus is claimed to be the final, and most difficult task of Heracles 12 trials.
Chimera (Greek Mythology): A monstrous hybrid that was Part-lion, part-goat, part-snake. In some descriptions, it has the head of all three, in others, it has the head of the lion and the goat, the lions body with the goat hooves, and a snake for a tail. In another description, it might be the head of one, the body of another, and the tail of the other. It’s really one big game of mix and match. Sometimes they also breath fire or have wings.
Cockatrice :A flying creature that is part-rooster and part snake that could supposedly kill with it’s stare. It’s said to be hatched by a reptile from a chickens egg. Pretty much the opposite of the Basilisk.
Dragon : Giant, flying, fire-breathing reptiles that are known for stealing and hording treasure. There are many, many different types of dragons that range from culture to culture. I could probably make a whole different post, just on the different types of dragons.
Griffin : A creature with the body of a lion and the head and wings of an eagle. Sometimes, it also has the tail of a snake. Griffins are popular among several different cultural mythologies.
Hippalectryon (Greek Mythology) : An odd hybrid of a horse and a chicken. It’s front half is the horse, its back half is the chicken, including tail and wings. There is no solid idea of why such a myth exists. Some say it’s a creature of Poseidon, and meant to protect ships, others say it’s just a grotesque hybrid to amuse children. Some say it’s a pointless creature with no real purpose other then for decoration. Why else would someone make a rooster horse?
Hippocampus (Greek Mythology) : A sea creature with the upper body of a horse, and the lower body of a fish. So, it is yet another odd horse hybrid from greek mythology.
Hippogriff (Greek Mythology): Because there’s no such thing as too many weird horse hybrids, meet the Hippogriff. Which has the front half and wings on an eagle, and the back half of a horse.
Huallepen (South American Folklore): A weird creature that lurks in lakes and ponds. It has the body of a (usually hairless) sheep, the head of a calf, and the twisted feet of a seal. It only comes out at night, and it’s said that if a pregnant women sees one, her child will come out with a muzzle and twisted limbs.
Hydra (Greek Mythology) : The giant nine-headed serpent who grew two new heads for every one that was cut of. The task of killing this beast was given to Heracles during his twelve trials. The only way to kill it, without it’s head growing back, was to smash the heads, and then catch them on fire.
(Greek Mythology) : The large snake like dragon that wrapped itself around the tree of golden apples in the garden of the Hesperides. Apparently slain by Heracles.
Isonade (Japanese Mythology) : An enormous, shark like sea monster that hides beneath the waves in the oceans of Japan. It’s massive hook like tail and it’s fins are covered in sharp barbs.
Nemean Lion (Greek Mythology) : The giant lion with impenetrable hide. This creature is killed by Heracles during his twelve trials, he later wears the skin of the creature as an indestructible cloak.
Kamaitachi (Japanese Mythology) : Also known as the sickle weasels. These mischievous creatures are thought of as either wind spirits, or spirits that ride in on dust devils. They slash as people with their long, sickle like nails.
- Kappa (Japanese Mythology) : Typically means ‘River Child’, these creatures are demons or imps that reside in the fresh water. They are often described as having a pool of water above their hand, that reflects their habitat and their own life force and their power. They are said to be about the size of a child, and somewhat human like in figure, with reptile like scales, a shell, a beak, and webbed hands and feet. They are usually either green, yellow or blue. Kappa are used to warn children about the dangerous of wandering near the water alone, as legends say the creatures will lure people to water before dragging them in and drowning them. They’re also said to peak up women’s skirts, play pranks on human, attack humans, and even eat human flesh. All around, probably safe to stay away from Kappas.
- Kraken (Norse Mythology) : A famous gigantic sea monster that’s known for attacking and sinking ships. It’s often depicted as a massive octopus or squid, sometimes with terribly sharp teeth.
- Orthros (Greek Mythology) : The lesser known, but probably just as adorable, monster sibling to Cerberus. Orthros is the dog with two heads, instead of three like it’s more famous sibling. It guards the giant Geryon
- Odontotyrannos: A beast that supposedly killed or incapacitated many of Alexander the Greats men.
it had a black, horse-like head, with three horns protruding from its forehead, and it exceeded the size of an elephant. Locals apparently called this beat the ‘Tooth-Tyrant’
Ophiotaurus (Greek Mythology) : The Cow Serpent. So the Greeks gave horses a rest, and made up this thing, which has the upper body of a black bull, and the tail of a serpent. It’s said that whoever could kill this beast and sacrificially burn it’s entrails would gain the power to destroy Olympus and it’s gods.
- Pegasus: The Winged Horse.
Phoenix :The golden bird who, at the end of its life, burst into flames only to be reborn again from it’s own ashes.
- Thunderbird : The giant bird that creates storms by flapping it’s wings.
Tikbalang (Philippines Folklore) : A tall, bony humanoid creature with the head and hooves of a horse and disproportionately long limbs, to the point that its knees reach above its head when it squats. It’s said to lurk in the forests and mountains of the Philippines. They like to scare or play tricks on travelers. They can apparently be avoided by wearing your shirt inside out, verbally asking for passage, or being as quite as possible so as not to disturb them.
- Unicorn: A magical Horse with a single horn protruding from it’s forehead.
Uchchaihshravas (Hindu Mythology) : A snow white, flying horse with seven heads. It’s said to be the best, or the king of horses.
Yacumama (South American Folklore) : A massive sea serpent believed to live in the mouth of the Amazon river, and near by lagoons. It would apparently suck up and devour anything with in a hundred passes of it. Local natives would blow a large conch shell before entering the water, believing the sound would force the monster to show itself if it was present.
That’s all I’ve got! I hope you liked it, and I hope people find it useful, because honestly, this thing took wayyyyy more time then I thought It would!
If anyone would like to add on any creatures I missed, or if you’d like to add something to any of the creatures that are already on the list, feel free too!
Note: I’ve gone ahead and edited, and added a couple new creatures from African Mythology that someone recommended!