Myths & Facts
The word dragon is derived from the Latin draco.
Mythological creatures known throughout the world at one time or another that shared the traits with reptiles. Depending on the location, these traits tended to vary. Meaning dragons could have been depicted as a snake with lizard-like legs and the ability to breathe fire (Oriental or Chinese dragon), or a giant dinosaur-like creature with leathery wings, four legs, long muscular tail and sometimes even spikes running down its spine (European dragon).
Oriental and European dragons are the most familiar versions of a legendary creature. And while European ones were thought to be evil, often plunging villages and demanding virgin sacrifices, Chinese dragons were considered to be the symbol of power, strength and luck, having control over primal forces of nature. They were of major spiritual significance, revered as the source of wisdom and magic.
European dragons despite their wings were the creatures of earth, living in an underground lair or cave and often guarding treasures. Featuring the villains in legends and tales about battles. Such as the 8th century poem Beowulf or the legend of Saint George and the dragon.
Though sometimes emitting fire, Chinese dragons are considered water deities and the five-clawed one - a symbol of the Chinese emperors. They were more mystical than physical creatures, controlling magic, changing forms (becoming invisible or turning into water or fire) and flying even without the wings.
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