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Examples of myth stories

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Examples of myth stories

Myths are ancient stories. Some are based on old folk tales, some are former religious stories which have lived on as myths.

The word 'myth' also means a story which is commonly believed but is untrue. An 'urban myth' is the classic example.

All cultures have myths of some kind, and ancient cultures themselves had even older stories handed down from prehistory. The ancient storytelling tradition was based on a core storyline, often derived from myths or moral tales. Aesop's Fables are the best example of this form.

Cultures with oral history traditions frequently use myths as educational or cultural orientation, like Native American cultures. Advanced cultures with written literature like the ancient Chinese used myths and their literary references as idioms.

Cultural examples of myths

African

Africa's myths are diverse and often misinterpreted by cultural fragmentation.

The god Abassi
Abada, the African unicorn

Australian Aboriginal

The oldest continual oral history on Earth. An Aboriginal elder in South Australia once met a historian and gave an exact transcript of traditional lore in 18 dialects.

Bunyip
Dreaming
Dreamtime
Rainbow Serpent

Breton

Brittany has its own distinct cultural history, and the folk tales are a rare insight into the society.

Ys, the doomed city

Celtic

The ancient Celtic culture has never died. Its recent revival is an example of the depth of its grip on its people.

Celtic polytheism
Celtic tree worship
The Wicker Man
Samhain (Halloween)

Chinese

Chinese culture has always survived its politics. These stories are a good introduction to the fundamental principles.

Dragon King
Three Treasures (Taoism)
The Jade Emperor
Yama

Egyptian

Egypt was ruled by its gods and goddesses, in more ways than one. The story 'The Indestructibles' shows how even the Pyramids were influenced by this vast belief system.

The god Aken
The goddess Pakhet
Stars: The Indestructibles
Cynocephaly (dog headed)

Gallic/Celtic

Gaul, like many Celtic lands, had its own tales, some shared, like Epona, some regional, like Sequana.

Epona The Horse Goddess
Sequana Goddess of the Seine

Germanic

Another large belief system, the pan Germanic deities include many of the major Norse gods.

Odin (Woden, Wotan)
Thor

Greek

The Greeks are believed to have developed their gods from much older prehistoric beliefs. They're the best recorded of all ancient European myths.

Aphrodite Goddess of Love
Athena Goddess of War
Helios, Sun god
Hercules (Heracles)
Jason and the Argonauts
Minotaur

Indian

Indian mythology illustrates how religion and myth interact.

Ganges
Kali (goddess)

Japanese

Before the Buddhists arrived in Japan and brought Chinese culture, there was an existing native mythology. These tales are from that era.

Kami (Spirits)
My Lord Bag Of Rice

Native American

The huge diversity of Native American legends is staggering. One of the more current tales is the Lakota Black Hills story. In the 1980s, the Lakota, better known as the Sioux, refused compensation of $106 million for the Black Hills. T

Hopi/Navajo Skin walker
Iroquois The Flying Head
Lakota (Sioux) The Black Hills

Norse

Norse legends have gone into the European psyche in many ways. The pan German Norse gave the Valkyrie saga to German culture.

Valkyrie
The Elf Maiden
Troll

Mongol

This Mongolian myth refers to a worm which is supposed to be up to 1.5 metres long.

Mongolian Death Worm

Persian

The Persian culture influence Europe for centuries. The ghoul is now a standard feature of many 'Western' myths.

Ghoul

Prussian

Predating Christianity, Piccollus is an insight into this ancient culture.

Piccollus Death God

Scottish

The Scottish Banshee wails when a king is about to die.

Banshee

United States

Modern America has produced a few spoof like myths, but these two are from regional folklore.

Boo Hag
Fur bearing trout

Zulu

The Zulu are better known as fighters than for their culture. This is one of the few available tales from their past.

Tikoloshe

         


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