One of this weeks prompts on Writers Island is Legend.
Imagine if you can an enormous hideous creature, twenty feet high, with a long thin head, piercing glassy eyes and red forked tongue lashing wildly as flames roar from its mouth. It raises itself up on two muscular legs and reaches forward with flaying arms, and long bony talons lash out at anything that gets in its way. A thin pointed tail whips around as it destroys everything in its path
Two enormous bat-like wings unfurl, and then begin to flap, before this terrifying animal flies into the sky surveying everything that falls beneath its shadow.
The mighty dragon has been part of folk law for centuries. The earliest sightings were back in the year 793 when the sky over the island of Lindisfarne was supposedly filled with dragons of many colours. In writings from 1222 London was reportedly over-run with dragons which brought on freak weather conditions –storms, floods and ball lightening caused panic in the city.
Famous legendary heroes regularly destroyed dragons. One such event took place near where I live when the conquering hero was offered the hand of the king’s daughter as a reward. England’s patron saint St George is always depicted slaying a dragon as is St Clements.
Dragons are usually depicted standing guard over hoards of gold and jewels, whilst inhabiting deep lakes or underground caverns. They are either seen as creatures of terror, or genial animals in children’s stories and cartoons.
Either way, the dragon has been the stuff of legends for centuries throughout Europe and Asia, and the world of art and literature is all the more colourful for it!
photos Google Images