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Myths & Legends

All over the world there are extraordinary stories—stories that once upon a time were believed to be true but are today limited to the sphere of ancient myths and legends. The question remains, are those myths and legends stories something that existed in the minds of our ancestors, or were they based on true events? It is true that most of those ancient myths and legends stories appear to the scientific world as fictitious products of vivid imaginations whose goals were purely to explain phenomena beyond their comprehension. Yet is it not arrogant to accuse our ancestors of being uncivilised and ignorant in one breath, then offer them praise and admiration over their monuments, buildings, art, sculptures, and societies in the next? This only proves that our modern society has two contradictory attitudes toward our past.

In this section we will explore some of the most amazing myths and legends from around the world—legends that may hold truths that can unlock the secrets of our ancient origins.

A 15th century depiction of Scota’s voyage from Egypt.

Scota: Mother of Scotland and Daughter of a Pharaoh

During the 1440s, a Scottish chronicler, Walter Bower, sought to trace the history of the Scottish people from the earliest times. The result of his endeavour was the creation of a compendium of...
Drawing of a Chupoacabra

The Legend of the Fearsome Chupacabra in Puerto Rico

The Chupacabra is a legendary cryptid often associated with Mexico, and well-known across Latin America. One of the locations the Chupacabra has made an impact in the past is in Puerto Rico...
Dante e Virgilio nel Purgatorio, Domenico Morelli

A Pilgrimage of Thought: Dante Ascends Mount Purgatory

Read Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 Purgatory is presented within The Divine Comedy as a mountain that must be climbed to be overcome. Following Dante and Virgil's sojourn into Hell, he and his guide...
Botticelli's Map of Dante's inferno

A Pilgrimage of Thought: Dante Treks through the Inferno of Satan

Read Part 1 | Part 2 At the beginning of Inferno , the first section of the Divine Comedy , Dante Alighieri is thirty-five years old in the year 1300—representing both the new millennium and the...
Dante holding open a copy of the Divine Comedy while gazing towards Mount Purgatory (1530), Agnolo Bronzino

A Pilgrimage of Thought: The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri

The most widely read work of Florentine politician and writer Dante Alighieri, the Divine Comedy dictates a tale of the three realms of the afterlife as believed by the Italians of the Middle Ages...
“Eternal Punishment in Greek Mythology”

Crime and Punishment: Eternal Damnations as handed down by the Ancient Greek Gods

Nothing sends a clearer message than an angry punishment handed down from the gods. In belief systems of cultures around the world deities have been disciplining their flocks since time immemorial,...
The Jessie Willcox Smith Mother Goose (1914) (Wikimedia Commons)

English Nursery Rhymes with Unexpected and Sometimes Disturbing Historical Origins

Many people associate nursery rhymes with reading happy stories to children, or remember being children themselves and chanting them while they play. However, the popular explanations for the origins...
War of the Roses - the Houses of Lancaster and York (AGZYM)

The Real Life Game of Thrones Part Two: War of the Roses

During the Late Medieval Period, a series of conflicts took place in England which were more destructive than the Hundred Years War had been in the previous century. One of the bloodiest civil wars...
Walls of the Middle Age city of Dubrovnik, Croatia - one of the filming sites of Game of Thrones (Wikimedia Commons)

The Real History Behind Game of Thrones (Part one)

Game of Thrones is a series of fantasy books by acclaimed author George R.R. Martin and a highly popular television show on HBO. It is a world unto its own, but like other popular fantasy series,...
Featured Image: Britomart viewing Artegal from  The Faerie Queene, (1895-1897) W. Crane (Wikimedia Commons)

Britomartis: The Original Virgin Huntress

The Minoan mistress of hunting and sea navigation, Britomartis is considered to be one of many goddesses to have been absorbed into classical Greek mythology. Britomartis appears to have played an...
The Kidnapping of Europa Mosaic, the Zeugma Mosaic Museum, Gaziantep, Turkey

Tracing the Origins of Europe, through Goddess Europa, Back to Jeroboam? Pt 2

Read Part 1 In the ancient legend surrounding the goddess Europa, the Greeks were essentially telling the story of how Phoenicians ended up getting scattered, founding and settling, in the various...
The Abduction of Europa by Rembrandt, 1632 (Wikimedia Commons)

Tracing the Origins of Europe, through Goddess Europa, Back to Jeroboam?

The usual derivation of the term Europe recalls the Greek myth of Europa. This origin is no mystery, in fact the Euro, their official coin, depicts the famous virgin seated on her bull-god. A popular...
Yeh-Shen

The 2,200-year-old Tale of the Chinese Cinderella

Before there was Cinderella, there was Ye Xian. Undeniably one of the most well-read fairy tales, Cinderella describes the life of a young woman forced into servitude by her stepmother until she is...
Tsarevna Frog (or The Frog Princess), by Viktor Vasnetsov, tells of a frog which metamorphoses into a princess

Evolving Forms: An Intriguing Look at Shapeshifting

The notion of shapeshifting has been around for nearly as long as human beings. The possibility that a person can take the shape of another being—most often an animal—can be traced back thousands of...
Dog Star, Sirius

Dog Days of Summer: The Rising of the Dog Star, Sirius

Dog Days , the phrase invokes the hottest, most stifling days of summer. The 40 days, beginning July 3 and ending August 11 coincide with the heliacal (at sunrise) rising of the Dog Star, Sirius. For...
The Ride of the Valkyries (1890), William T. Maud

The Powerful Valkyries as Icons of Female Force and Fear

The Valkyries of Norse mythology were women of vast prestige and power. They were one of the few factions of warrior women from ancient lore recognized as having any power over the mortal realm...

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