Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Water Spirits, Succubi, Creepy and Cryptid in Folklore and Mythology

In this post, the creatures will progress from cute to creepy to just plain freaky. So if you’re squeamish, don’t scroll to the last images!

When writing the novel, Dark Siren, (follow the link for a free preview below) I dreamed up the main character’s supernatural characteristics as I went along, incorporating her unique abilities into the story. After I’d finished the novel, laziness prevented me from making up some weird name for this new creature I’d invented. SO, I did oodles of research, comparing her to other supernatural entities to see what she most resembled. In the end, I settled on the siren. But really, the main character, Kalista, possesses traits resembling sirens, succubi, mermaids, and the phoenix.

A previous post, Mermaids, Mythology, and the Mysterious Siren, discussed the folklore of mermaids and sirens. This article will discuss a few other cryptids: water spirits, succubi, and the tremendously disturbing manananggal.

Water Spirit
siren, mermaid, water spirit

In German folklore, waters spirits are known as Nix or Nyx. Capable of shapeshifting, these creatures usually appear in human form.

Male nix also assume the shape of fish, snakes, and human males. When disguised as men, the water spirit can be recognized by a slit in their ear.

Female water spirits (nixie) are beautiful women who possess the tail of fish. These river mermaids are also capable of shapeshifting. But even in human form, an ever present wet hem in their clothing identifies them as belonging to the supernatural realm.


succubus, demon, cryptid

The succubus is found in Arubian, Indian, and African folklore.

These female entities appear in dreams, taking human form in order to seduce men. While modern succubi are very attractive, in the past, they were frightening and demonic.  

aswang, Philippine mythology, manananggal
by: geniuspen

The manananggal is a creature from Philippine mythology that is often compared to the western vampire. Usually female, this cryptid detaches its torso from its lower body during a full moon, taking flight on batwings in search of victims.

aswang, Philippine folklore, bat woman
by: chopart2012

A manananggal typically feeds on pregnant women, drinking the blood of an unborn child with an elongated tongue capable of sucking blood from a distance. 

Freaky right? If you know something even creepier, I'd love to hear about it! Post the name of your scary cryptid in the comments below. 

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