Manticore versus Griffin

Watch out for the manticore — the name comes from the Persian word for “man-eater!” A manticore is a mythical creature with a man’s head, a lion’s body, and a scorpion’s tail. And teeth. Lots of teeth.

The manticore is a fearsome half-beast half-human, with sharp quills like a porcupine. Fortunately, you’re not likely to see a manticore anywhere outside a dream or mythology book, because it’s a made-up monster. There are many such creatures in mythology, like a griffin that has a lion’s head and eagle wings, or an Egyptian sphinx with a human head and a lion’s body. But if you see a toothy, man-headed, lion-bodied guy with a sharp tail, it’s a manticore.

If your little brother wants a pet griffin, you should probably try to talk him out of it. A griffin is a flying, eagle-headed lion with sharp talons. (Luckily for you, griffinsaren’t real.)

The mythical griffin — also spelled gryphon or griffon — dates as far back as 3000 BCE. Some griffins have the front talons of an eagle, like the griffins that appear on shields or coats-of-arms — they were often used this way, since the combination of lion and eagle was seen as being especially brave and strong. Griffins appear in literature ranging from Rumi’s ancient Persian poetry to the Harry Potter books. The word’s Greek root is gryps, “curved.”

Illustrations are from vocabulary.com 

Manticore versus Griffin looks a lot like alien versus predator–a movie name I heard a lot but never cared to watch. Most words beginning with M have sinister connotations especially those with ‘mal’ prefix. ‘M’ is destructive and in the Hindu trinity of AUM–creator, preserver and destroyer–M stands for destroyer–Shiva–but nothing new can be created without destroying the old so it’s dissolution or reshaping or creating new versions of programs Shiva actually does.

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