Tales of mermaids have been spoken about since humanity learned how to write. But how and when did their stories and the possibility of their existence spring up? Where did they originate? Did they come from sailors’ tales of sightings, or were they known even before that?
Magical, mysterious, and mischievous, fairies never fail to enchant us. But what are they really? Most people consider fairies the products of human imagination—cartoon characters in animated movies or charming creatures in stories we read to children at bedtime—and unless you’re under the age of six, you probably don’t believe they exist.
Many years have passed since the Greeks and Romans worshiped the gods and goddesses of Mount Olympus— centuries, in fact. The ancient characters you may have heard of before, like mighty Zeus, monstrous Medusa, and seductive Aphrodite, originate from myths dating back to 900 B.C.
In Greek mythology, nymphs were minor female deities, or goddesses, associated with nature. Typically pictured as beautiful girls or young women, they could live for a very long time but were not immortal (able to live forever). Most nymphs were the daughters of Zeus, the leader of the gods, or of other gods.
As one of the most popular mythological creatures in modern day, the dragon is no mystery. It does, however, have a lengthy history that many people are unaware of. When most people envision a dragon, they think of a large reptile-like creature with enormous wings that breathes fire and attacks castles.
Angels: (from the Latin Angelus meaning messenger) are a race of spiritual beings intermediate between God and men; described in Hebrew, Christian, and Islamic scriptures, as well as in the Kabala. They are usually depicted with wings (but not always) and have no gender unless granted physical form in a mission to the Earthly realm.
The word “witch” comes from the Anglo-Saxon word “Wicca,” which comes from the word “wicce,” meaning “wise.” The origin of the word dates back to thousands of years when people widely worshiped Mother Earth or Nature as goddesses.
Norse mythology refers to the Scandinavian mythological framework that was upheld during and around the time of the Viking Age (c. 790- c. 1100 CE). Before the Norse (a.k.a. the Vikings) converted to Christianity during the Middle Ages, they had their own vibrant native pagan religion that was as harshly beautiful as the Nordic landscape to which it was intimately connected.
An elf (plural: elves) is a type of humanlike supernatural being in Germanic mythology and folklore. In medieval Germanic-speaking cultures, elves seem generally to have been thought of as beings with magical powers and supernatural beauty, ambivalent towards everyday people and capable of either helping or hindering them.