The Great Monsters of Greek Mythology
By: Mala'e

What would folklore be without the monsters that torment the heroes? I mean come on, if Odysseus and his men were not given obstacles such as the Cyclopes or Scylla the story would just have not been the same. Whether it is Scylla, Chyribdas, Medusa, Typhon or event the Sirens, they always give the tale or myth the extra excitement that it needs.

Scylla is one of Greek Mythology’s most recognized creatures. She is well known mostly because of her part in the **Odyssey**. But most people do not know that she was once a young beautiful girl. She did not turn into the six headed sea beast until she fell in love with a that was also loved by a women by the name of Circe. Unfortunately for Scylla, Circe had quite the temper. As soon as she had found out about Scylla’s love for the same man, Circe the turned Scylla into a hideous six headed sea monster. Scylla was now stuck in this body for the rest of her lifetime. Her permanent home was a cave that was frequently passed by ships. Her daily life is now spent plucking six men from every ship that passes by. She takes one man for each head to feast on. This occurred to **Odysseus’s** crew when they passed by Scylla. The crew lost six men and had to complete their journey home to Ithaca shorthanded.

Charybdis is a sea monster that has the potential to create a giant whirlpool that can suck a ship to the dark depths of the ocean floor in an instant. Charybdis is the daughter of Poseidon. She end
Charybdas is a giant sea monster that swallows millions of gallons of water and spits it back out creating a massive whirlpool
ed up submerging her father’s under water kingdom. Zeus, Poseidon’s close brother, close brother then turned her into a hideous sea monster. Now she sucks in thousands and thousands of gallons of water a day and spits it back out and creates a giant whirlpool. She lives across the Messina Pass opposite from Scylla’s cave which is within the sea cliffs overlooking the same body of water..

Like most of the other monsters in Greek mythology Medusa was mortal for some time. She was a beautiful young women who lived far north were it was dark for the entire year. She had always wanted to see the sun and its beauty. To do this she must travel south. She asked **Athena** if she would grant her the permission to travel down south. When she was denied, she was furious. When she spoke to others she told them that the Goddess Athena was envious of her beauty. As soon as Athena found out, she unleashed her wrath on Medusa. She punished her very harshly. Athena turned her hair into a forest of snakes and turned her into a hideous women. She was so ugly that anyone who even took a glance at her would immediately be turned into stone. (4)

Typhon is the monster of all storms. He is a giant who is in a prison. Zeus has trapped him in the pit of Tartarose. He was known as one of the most deadly monsters in all of Greek mythology. Poets say that his upper body reached high in the sky because of its pure massiveness. He was feared by even some of the most high, powerful gods. He had fire pouring from his eyes and his entire body was covered in wings. His lower half was coils and coils of vipers that made startling hissing noises to ward off and scare the enemy. He defeated Zeus once but was defeated in the second battle and trapped under Mount Etna .(5)

The Sirens were stunning young half bird, half women creatures who sang the most beautiful songs. The unlucky fellows who were caught listening to these songs forget about all of reality and died of starvation and thirst. Sailors were the usual victims. The only way to avoid being sucked into temptation is to plug your ears with wax or any other substance that will completely block out all of the sound. (6)

The bottom line is that without monsters and creatures, Greek mythology would just not be the same. These beasts create obstacles for even the most skilled sailors or even epic heroes like Odysseus.