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The Various Types of Dragons: Discover Their Abilities and Numbers

dragon



# How Many Types Of Dragons Are There And What Can They Do?

## Summary

Dragons have always been present in ancient mythologies and various folklore around the world. They are deeply embedded in many different cultures, making it practically impossible to determine the exact number of dragon types. Some sources claim there are 73 types, while others suggest there are only 50. In this article, we will explore 10 types of dragons and provide insights into their characteristics and abilities. From the powerful and auspicious Chinese Dragon to the destructive Western Dragon, each type has its own unique attributes. Join us on a mythical journey as we delve into the fascinating world of dragons.

## 1. The Chinese Dragon

The Chinese Dragon, also known as the Oriental or Eastern Dragon, holds significant cultural symbolism in Chinese tradition. These dragons are often considered symbols of power and good luck. With an affinity for water, they possess the ability to summon rain and control other water phenomena. As a result, Chinese Dragons are believed to live in the depths of seas, rivers, and lakes. Unlike Western Dragons, they have more serpentine bodies and claws resembling those of a hawk.

A popular legend surrounding the Chinese Dragon’s origin is the Totem-Worship Theory. According to this theory, the dragon originated when the Yellow Emperor Huangdi waged war against nine other tribes. With each victory, he absorbed the totems of the defeated tribes into his own dragon totem. As a result, the Chinese Dragon became a hybrid creature with various animal traits, including eyes like a shrimp, antlers like a deer, and scales like a fish. The Chinese Dragon can also be further divided into nine sub-categories, each with its distinct attributes and skills.

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## 2. The Standard Western Dragon

The Standard Western Dragon is the iconic depiction of dragons that often comes to mind. This type of dragon is prevalent in European folklore and occupies a significant place in modern media. It features a four-legged body, large wings, and the ability to breathe fire. While illustrations from the Middle Ages portrayed dragons as lizard-like creatures with small wings, the reconstructions of dinosaurs influenced the dragon’s anatomy. As people discovered the bird and mammal-like characteristics of dinosaurs, dragon imagery began to shift, depicting them standing upright with more substantial wings.

Unlike Eastern dragons, which symbolize prosperity and power, Western dragons are associated with destruction, death, and are often linked to the Devil.

## 3. The Wyvern

Distinct from the Standard Western Dragon, the English Wyvern is bipedal, meaning it has only two legs instead of four. It is generally smaller in size and occasionally possesses venomous stingers or darts at the ends of its tail. While Wyverns are not commonly known for breathing fire, they are believed to have exceptional eyesight.

In some contexts, the Wyvern represents protection, strength, and valor. However, it can also symbolize vengeance. An infamous Wyvern is the Dragon of Mordiford, as per local legend. The story revolves around a girl named Maud, who discovered a baby Wyvern in the forest and unknowingly took it home as a pet. When her mother realized what it was, she demanded Maud to return it to its habitat. Instead, Maud hid the Wyvern in the forest and raised it. As the Wyvern grew, it began killing farm animals for sustenance. Despite the farmers’ attempts to eliminate the creature, it developed a taste for human flesh. Ultimately, a nobleman in full armor managed to slay the Wyvern, but it left Maud devastated.

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## 4. The Hydra

The Hydra is notorious for its ability to grow multiple heads in place of each one that is cut off. It possesses various abilities such as spitting venom and breathing fire, in addition to its highly poisonous blood and fangs. These traits make the Hydra exceptionally challenging to defeat.

In Greek mythology, the most well-known Hydra is the Lernaean Hydra, considered the offspring of Typhon and Echidna. This serpent-like water dragon resided in the lake of Lerna in the Argolid region. The exact number of heads a Hydra has varies, but it is said to have more heads than painters could portray. Additionally, one of its heads is immortal. Heracles, as part of his twelve labors, successfully defeats the Lernaean Hydra. To counter its regenerative ability, Heracles enlists the help of his nephew Iolaus, who cauterizes the Hydra’s wounds as they chop off its heads. Finally, Heracles manages to slay the Hydra’s immortal head, burying it under a rock.

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## 5. The Japanese Dragon

Japanese dragons are a fusion of mythological dragons from Chinese, Indian, and Korean traditions, intertwined with local folklore. Similar to other East Asian dragon variations, Japanese dragons are usually associated with water gods, rain, storms, and bodies of water. They are often depicted as wingless, serpentine creatures with clawed feet. In some instances, Japanese dragons can assume a human form, appearing as either men or women. The Japanese language distinguishes between Western and Eastern dragons, using different words to refer to them.

Among the many Japanese dragons, Ryūjin stands out. He is a sea god, also known as the master of serpents, residing in a palace beneath the ocean. Ryūjin is generally portrayed as a benevolent entity, assisting protagonists in various tales. However, there are instances where he becomes an obstacle as well.

## 6. The Druk

The Druk, also referred to as the thunder dragon, originates from Tibetan and Bhutanese mythology. It has become a national symbol of Bhutan, so much so that Bhutanese leaders are called “Druk Gyalpo,” translating to “Thunder Dragon Kings.” The Druk is prominently featured on Bhutan’s flag, depicted with four jewels in its claws to symbolize wealth.

Within Tibetan Buddhism, the Drukpa Kagyu branch embraces the Druk as a significant spiritual symbol.



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