Nian

Nian

Happy New Year! Did you know that in Chinese mythology that they have a New Years Monster? Watch out kids! You better have some firecrackers to keep it at bay! According to Chinese mythology, a Nian (simplified Chinese: 年兽; traditional Chinese: 年獸; pinyin: nián shòu)...
The Yule Cat

The Yule Cat

Merry Christmas! Hope you’re at least getting some new LL Bean boots before Christmas this year, otherwise look out! The Yule Cat (Icelandic: Jólakötturinn) is a monster from Icelandic folklore, a huge and vicious cat said to lurk about the snowy countryside...
Beowulf and Grendel

Beowulf and Grendel

An ancient tale of monsters and men! If you can push through text, it’s a wonderful story. I highly recommend the translation by Seamus Heaney. Grendel is one of three antagonists (along with Grendel’s mother and the dragon) in the Anglo-Saxon epic poem...
Here be Dragons

Here be Dragons

Ever see an ancient map with a dragon-like monster drawn way out at sea? “Here be dragons” means dangerous or unexplored territories, in imitation of a medieval practice of putting illustrations of dragons, sea monsters and other mythological creatures on...
Werewolf

Werewolf

When the moon is full, I get all itchy. I thought it was my laundry detergent. Turns out to be something more… A werewolf (from Old English: wer, “man”), man-wolf, or lycanthrope (Greek: λυκάνθρωπος, lykánthropos: λύκος, lykos, “wolf”,...