Also known as a ‘scultone’ or ascultone,’ the dragon is mentioned in legends hailing from Sardinia, Italy. The creature was thought to have the ability to kill humans just by simply taking a look at them. It was an immortal, legendary reptile that lived in the bush and was thought to be associated with the king. In this article, you will also learn about dragons in Korea and Hungary.
Asturian and Leonese Dragons
The mythology associated with the Asturians and Leonese referred to their dragons as ‘Cuelebre’ , giant serpents with wings and poisonous breath that lived in caves. They were responsible for watching over treasures and xanas (very attractive fairy nymphs that live in rivers, waterfalls, fountains and forests) that had been kidnapped. With a lifespan that reached centuries, the dragons would use their wings to fly when they became extremely old. Cattle are their main source of food.
The Welsh referred to the dragon as ‘Y Ddraig Goch’ and it appeared in Welsh myths to describe a battle between a red dragon and white dragon. The red creature (which represented the Welsh) was the victor and the white dragon symbolized the Saxons. This was the way that Merlin foretold of the defeat of the English by the Welsh. On the Welsh national flag, you can still see the depiction of the triumphant red dragon.
Dragons in Hungary
There are three different kinds of ‘dragons’ that appear in Hungarian folklore and myths. The ‘zomok’ is a snake that dwells in a swamp and usually kills pigs and sheep. However, a group of shepherd can easily kill a zomok. The ‘sarkanykigyo’ are giant snakes with wings, which are considered a full-grown zomok. The creatures are thought to cause bad weather and storms, as well as serve for a method of flying for magicians. In Hungary, there is also a dragon that takes on the form of a human. The majority of ‘sarkany’ are giants with more than one head, which is where they receive their strength. The more heads the dragon loses, the weaker they become.
In Korea, there are three distinct dragons that appear in myths and folktales. The first is called Yong (or Mireu) and it is known as the sky dragon, which is often associated with the weather and water. The hornless ocean dragon is called Immogi and is often compared to with a serpent of the sea. Its name translates into ‘Great Lizard’ and there is a legend attached to the creature that says the sun god gave the Immogi its power through the form of a human girl. When the girl reached her 17th birthday, she would be transformed into the Immogi. Legend said that the girl would have a mark shaped like a dragon on her shoulder, which would prove that she was the Imoogi in human form. The mountain dragon in Korean folklore is also known as the Gyo.