It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

'Here be dragons...'

page: 1
0

log in

join
share:

posted on Jan, 31 2006 @ 06:14 PM
link   
This is just a thought that popped into my head while checking out the origin of unicorn mythos.

in the olden days, when an area was unexplored on a map, it was marked with the above phrase.

Why was this? Could they not have just left it blank or written 'Uncharted'?
What spurred these people to write about a winged race inhabiting unexplored terrain.

Maybe (just distantly maybe) dragons did exist in areas that were unexplored by (mainly) english (as other peoples seemed to revere them while we feared them). What if they were driven into confined habitats which meant there would have been more competition etc and led to their decline.




posted on Jan, 31 2006 @ 07:50 PM
link   
Perhaps travelers lableled un-traveled land as "here be dragons" because of these strange geographic features:

A) Mountains and hills sometimes resemble enormous dragons. In fact, In China there are many mountains that are named after Dragons because they have uncanny resemblances to dragon faces, tails, horns, and backs. Unwary travelers could easily see these as dragons:

B) Swamps and marshes produce an amazing amount of methane gas and oxygen because of the enormous amount of algae. They are notorious for small flare ups and bursts of fire that come from these gases mixing together. Perhaps if travelers came across a swamp and suddenly saw a burst of flames shoot up from the marsh, they would think it was a dragon warning them to stay away.

C) In deep rivers, natural whirlpools are extremely dangerous and feared by ships and canoes. There are dozens of Native American myths that revolve around the whirlpool(pun intended). A few of them relate to dragons, they believe that whirlpools are caused by dragons and that if you stare into one, you will immediately drown. To avoid this, Native Americans would offer sacrifices to rivers and even temporarily blind themselves with peppers in order to avoid staring into these deadly whirlpools.


56

posted on Jan, 31 2006 @ 08:51 PM
link   
oh yay, another dragon thread. these usually end up going nowhere but...oh well.

Maybe they really did see dragons.

that, or it was some kind of mistranslation, maybe Dragons means something else to them.



posted on Jan, 31 2006 @ 10:54 PM
link   
Or perhaps its just the normal human trait of assigning fantastic stories to anything that is unknown.

In the absence of facts the imagination runs amok. That is why this website is filled with stories of underground UFO bases, Atlantis, and crop circles.



posted on Jan, 31 2006 @ 11:22 PM
link   
I don't think that it can really be said that all old maps labeled unexplored areas "Here there be dragons". I'm sure there are plenty of examples that could be presented where the phrase or something similar is used, and many, many more where no such indications are made. What really seems to be at play here is the propensity of certain mapmakers to illustrate empty areas of land and especially ocean with sea serpents, dragons and other mythological creatures. The reasons for this are going to be largely aesthetic.



posted on Feb, 1 2006 @ 04:58 AM
link   

Originally posted by Cicada
I don't think that it can really be said that all old maps labeled unexplored areas "Here there be dragons". I'm sure there are plenty of examples that could be presented where the phrase or something similar is used, and many, many more where no such indications are made. What really seems to be at play here is the propensity of certain mapmakers to illustrate empty areas of land and especially ocean with sea serpents, dragons and other mythological creatures. The reasons for this are going to be largely aesthetic.

Yeah, probably just for being pretty.

Personally I think it comes from old germanic/viking/etc myths. For example the sea serpent so large it circled the world (if you didnt hit it, you fell over the edge
). Its not too hard to imagine that later map makers took the idea and simplified into smaller sea serpents.



posted on Feb, 1 2006 @ 07:03 AM
link   
I have been thinking and maybe it could be attributed to large lizards.
Imagine an English explorer going to Australia and meeting an 8' full grown crocodile! (or even worse one of those rare Crocodilus Huntus read Steve Irwin:cool


A croc would surely appear dragon like to someone whod never seen one.



posted on Feb, 1 2006 @ 03:52 PM
link   
i think by dragon they meant something that was really freaky/frightening that they couldn't identify properly, so they said dragon.

maybe even jumping great white sharks contributed to this, because if you've seen it in person it is scarey as all hell.



posted on Feb, 1 2006 @ 06:49 PM
link   
i've not seen it in person but i've seen pics. they look majestic i think. Something so big and fierce, and they get pretty high!


56

posted on Feb, 1 2006 @ 11:15 PM
link   
I have a picture of one of those sharks, very cool looking, unless your the guy on the ladder...




posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 07:41 PM
link   
Actually, that photo was a splice of these two photos:



Here's a photo of a great white breaching:




posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 07:49 PM
link   
"Here be Dragons" was usually a phrase stamped on sections of ocean right? So, the dragons referred to are more likely the sea serpent type, as opposed to the winged, european dragons of popular legend.

Saltwater crocs are a good candidate for mistaken identity, and they have been observed many, many miles from land, swimming in the open ocean. They're big, they're mean, and they are definitely man-eaters, given half a chance. Fits the bill pretty well.



new topics

top topics



 
0

log in

join