Of Mythical Monsters and Men

If snakes terrify you, this serpent will send chills up your spine. Every other reptile (Basilisk included) pales in comparison. Introducing the Hydra, a stuff of Greek legend. The progeny of Typhon and Echidna, it was fabled to guard the Greek underworld.

If you thought Ravana had a head too many get ready to be blown away.  Some say the Hydra had far too many heads for the painters to paint, however it is generally accepted that it possessed lesser than 10 heads. This of course was courtesy of the traits of its parents: Typhon had a 100 heads and Echidna was part serpent-part maiden. The deadly nature of the Hydra came from the fact that if one head was severed, two would grow in its place. Its trail was toxic and its breath could kill any being on the face of the Earth. It wasn’t long before the Hydra was proclaimed public nuisance number one, devouring cattle and man alike.

The Fabled Hydra

What added to the Hydra’s widespread popularity (along with its terrifying characteristics), is how it met its doom. Enter Hercules. The King of Tiryns, Eurystheus, sent him following incessant reports of the serpent’s wrath. Hercules followed the seven sure-shot steps to slay the beast-

  1. Get the monsters attention with flaming arrows.
  2. Behead the beast, multiple times.
  3. Upon realizing the genetic head spawning mechanism the beast possesses, summon your charioteer and seek his assistance.
  4. For every head you slash, assign your trusty sidekick to cauterize each open stump.
  5. Repeat the above until all but one head (it’s strongest) remain.
  6. It is time to improvise. Smash the final head with a club. Use excessive force.
  7. Just to make a statement, use your bare hands to tear the head off.

The beast of Lerna has been slain. Alternate versions to the story speak of a giant crab, sent by goddess Hera, that joins the fray. Needless to say, Hercules returned home to a pompous celebration. He dipped his arrows in Hydra blood, making them as deadly as can be.

It is often believed that the fabled Loch Ness monster of Scotland is simply a manifestation based on the legend of the Hydra. The Hydra still remains a popular mythological creature, even featuring in the Disney film Hercules. Bloody, heroic and chilling, the tale of the Hydra lives on.

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Sudharshan

Intern at The Fishbowl Network
Hey, Sudharshan here. I'm a first year college student studying Instrumentation and Control Engineering at NIT Trichy.
Writing is a passion of mine and I'm at home when it comes to the things I love such as music, cinema and society. Apart from being an avid reader and writer, I'm the kind of guy who would try my hand at anything. A hardcore music junkie, I listen to everything from Pink Floyd to The Foo Fighters. In other news, I also play the guitar and love playing basketball. Debating and MUN-ing are two other things I can never get enough of.
I'm just a click away, so ping me- I'd love to say hi!
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About Sudharshan

Hey, Sudharshan here. I'm a first year college student studying Instrumentation and Control Engineering at NIT Trichy. Writing is a passion of mine and I'm at home when it comes to the things I love such as music, cinema and society. Apart from being an avid reader and writer, I'm the kind of guy who would try my hand at anything. A hardcore music junkie, I listen to everything from Pink Floyd to The Foo Fighters. In other news, I also play the guitar and love playing basketball. Debating and MUN-ing are two other things I can never get enough of. I'm just a click away, so ping me- I'd love to say hi!