Monsters VS Heroes
“Monsters, in the language of mythology, were beings of unnatural proportions or parts, usually regarded with terror, as possessing immense strength and ferocity, which they employed for the injury and annoyance of men”(Thomas Bulfinch). This quote defines a monster and describes them as unnatural and often feared by the people they terrorize. There are many different types of monsters and all monsters fight different heroes, but all their purpose is the same, to strike fear in the people surrounding them. In Greek mythology heroes are often sent to defeat these creatures that are thought to be unbeatable. Heroes are often sent to beat these monsters as a way to gain passage to a better life. The heroes who fight with the monsters often have some divinity in their background. While there is only one type of hero, who in the end always wins and overcome the odds, heroes such as Hercules, Oedipus and Bellerphon, but there are many different types of monsters to fight each hero, such as the Sphinx, the Centaurs and the Chimera.
With body of a lion and the upper part of a woman the Sphinx is by all means an unnatural creature. An intellectual monster the Sphinx purposes her victims with a riddle and if they answer wrong they are immediately slain by the beast. The only one to defeat the Sphinx is Oedipus the king of Thebes. The body of the Sphinx can be considered symbolism in the fact that the Sphinx can be compared to Mother Nature. If you don’t solve the riddle of life you will not live out your days, or if you face the Sphinx you will be clawed while if you do understand the riddle you Mother Nature will nurture you (Thomas Carlyle).
With the upper body of a man to the lower body of a horse the centaur is considered by modern times to be a degrading combination, but to the ancient Greeks the Centaur is one of the most fancied and cherished monsters of all ( Thomas Bullfinch). The Centaurs were even guest at the wedding of Pirithous and Hippodamia. The Centaurs became intoxicated and started a brawl and were slain by Lapithae. Though this is the shortcomings of some the Centaurs not all were this way, in fact one Centaur by the name of Chiron was instructed by Diana and Apollo in medicine, hunting, prophecy and even music. While the Centaur may have had the body of a monster and was abnormally formed they were held in high regard. The Centaurs were not only held in high regard by the Greek people but also the gods. Being instructed by the gods and working hand in hand with them. At the same time the Centaurs were known for being violent savages and for commonly trying to take heroes wives. This wide range of characteristics makes it hard to classify all the Centaurs in one group.
The Chimera, a fire breathing lion with the body of a goat and the tail of a serpent. This dreadful creature terrorized the city of Lycia. Born to the parents Typhon and Echidna (Gerrit J. Bouma), Chimera was doomed to be evil from birth. The...