Medieval Japanese monster folklore, the Akaname
The akaname is a yokai (mythical creature) that is said to reside in filthy or neglected bathrooms. Translated literally as “filth licker” or “red licker” the akaname has a long tongue which it uses to feed on the filth and grime of a dirty bathroom until it is licked clean. Often this legend was used to scare children into doing their chores, particularly cleaning the bathroom. I’m not sure how this is frightening or even particularly bad, I could use an akaname of my own.
For something with an adorable name, this creature from Aboriginal mythology is a terrifying specimen. The Bunyip has appeared in the lore of Aboriginal tribes all over Australia, but the origin of the word “Bunyip” has been traced back to the Wergaia people of the South-Eastern region of the continent.
The Bunyip exists in this mythology somewhere between being a water sprit and a terrifying river-monster. The word itself is usually translated to “devil” or “evil spirit.” The descriptions of the Bunyip’s physical form can vary, though most depictions of the beast show it as an enormous dog-hippopotamus with flippers. Some have described it as a giant, malevolent starfish, and some as a walrus-horse. One thing all the descriptions have in common: it’s big. That, and we’re pretty sure it wants to kill you.
The origins of the Bunyip lie with the aboriginal cultures, though the popularization and drive to hammer down a universally accepted physical description comes from European colonists. When they arrived on the continent, there was a great deal of fauna they didn’t recognize, and some descriptions of the Bunyip sync up with animals we’re now familiar with. One popular belief over the myth of the Bunyip is that it was actually an exaggerated story told about large seals that made their way up major rivers to more inland locations, whose barking and big eyes then scared the bajeezus out of whoever was within earshot of the river. Just in case the Bunyip’s actually a dog-hippo-demon, though, maybe stay out of the water when you go to Australia to “find yourself.”
The son of Odin and Gunnlod, (a giantess) Bragi was the Germanic god of poetry and eloquence. Fancy. He was married to Idun, the goddess who kept the magic apples of youth.
When Loki returned to Asgard after masterminding the death of Baldr, Bragi, who was never at a loss for words, told the trickster that he was unwelcome company at the godly feast. Enraged, Loki called Bragi “the bragger,” whereupon Bragi threatened to twist off Loki’s head as the only sure method of stopping his lies. That’s Bragi-Justice. Odin tried to cool everyone down, but Loki was already ultra-pissed, and prophesied the destruction of the gods at Ragnarok before fleeing Asgard in a huff.
Bragi might’ve been a late addition to the Germanic pantheon, and it’s not unlikely that he was the addition of a poet, (skald) since in Germanic courts, poets were venerated second only to kings. Bragi was portrayed as an old, bearded man carrying a harp, and when oaths were sworn they were solemnized by speaking over a vessel called the Cup of Bragi.
FIGURES OF LORE | áine, irish mythology
Áine (Irish pronunciation: [ˈaːnʲə]) is an Irish goddess of summer, wealth and sovereignty. She is associated with midsummer and the sun, and is sometimes represented by a red mare. She is the daughter of Egobail, the sister of Aillen and/or Fennen, and is claimed as an ancestor by multiple Irish families. As the goddess of love and fertility, she had command over crops and animals and is also associated with agriculture.
Áine is strongly associated with County Limerick. The hill of Knockainy (Irish: Cnoc Áine) is named after her, and was site of rites in her honor, involving fire and the blessing of the land, recorded as recently as 1879. She is also associated with sites such as Toberanna (Irish: Tobar Áine), County Tyrone; Dunany (Irish: Dun Áine), County Louth; Lissan (Irish: Lios Áine), County Londonderry; and Cnoc Áine near Teelin, County Donegal.
FIGURES OF LORE | jörð, norse mythology
↳ requested by anon
In Norse mythology, Jörð (Icelandic ”earth”, pronounced [ˈjörð] or “yurd” and from Old Norse jǫrð, pronounced [ˈjɔrð], sometimes Anglicized as Jord or Jorth; also called Jarð, jɑrð as in Old East Norse), is a female jötunn. She is the mother of Thor and the personification of the Earth. Fjörgyn and Hlóðyn are considered to be other names for Jörð. Jörð is reckoned a goddess, like other jötnar who coupled with the gods. Jörð’s name appears in skaldic poetry both as a poetic term for the land and in kennings for Thor.
Rudra (howler) is considered the god of wind and storm — and one of the forms of Shiva!
Scáthach is a figure in the Ulster Cycle of Irish mythology. She is a legendary Scottish warrior woman and martial arts teacher who trains the legendary Ulster hero Cú Chulainn in the arts of combat. Texts describe her homeland as Scotland (Alpae); she is especially associated with the Isle of Skye, where her residence Dún Scáith
In Japanese mythology, the Bakezori is a Tsukomogami in the form of a zori sandal. If mistreated, the Bakezori was said to run through the house at night yelling ”kararin, kororin, kankororin!”
The wulver is a kind of werewolf that is exclusively part of the folklore of the Shetland Islands of Scotland. The wulver kept to itself and was not aggressive if left in peace. Unlike most ‘werewolves’ the Wulver is not a shapeshifter and is not nor was it ever a human being. It appears to be a sort of immortal spirit. Jessie Saxby, in Shetland Traditional Lore (Chapter 9), writes, “The Wulver was a creature like a man with a wolf’s head. He had short brown hair all over him. His home was a cave dug out of the side of a steep knowe, half-way up a hill. He didn’t bother folk if folk didn’t bother him. He was fond of fishing, and had a small rock in the deep water which is known to this day as the ‘Wulver’s Stane’. There he would sit fishing sillaks and piltaks for hour after hour. He was reported to have frequently left a few fish on the window-sill of some poor body.”
A similar un-hostile werewolf is the Faoladh from Irish folklore. The Faoladh was said to protect children and stand guard over wounded men.
Quetzalcoatl is a Mesoamerican deity whose name comes from the Nahuatl language and has the meaning of “feathered serpent”. Among the Aztecs, whose beliefs are the best-documented in the historical sources, Quetzalcoatl was related to gods of the wind, of Venus, of the dawn, of merchants and of arts, crafts and knowledge. He was also the patron god of the Aztec priesthood, of learning and knowledge. Quetzalcoatl is credited with having created the current race of mankind. Usually, our current time was considered the fifth sun, the previous four having been destroyed by flood, fire and the like. Quetzalcoatl went to Mictlan, the underworld, and created fifth-world mankind from the bones of the previous races using his own blood, from a wound he inflicted on his earlobes, calves, tongue, and penis, to imbue the bones with new life. One Aztec story claims that Quetzalcoatl was tricked by Tezcatlipoca into becoming drunk and sleeping with a celibate priestess (in some accounts, his sister) and then burned himself to death out of remorse. His heart became the morning star.