Myths and Stories around Water
Water is an important part of our life. Terefore, it presents no surprise that incountable myths and stories rank around water. Many religions have gods and demi-gods associated with water.
Anahita (or Nahid in modern Farsi), meaning "unstained" or "immaculate", is the Persian goddess of war and motherhood, and hence the source of life. Her full name is Ardvi Sura Anahita Shahr Banu. She is the goddess of pure waters and fertility, and her temples built near natual springs, rivers or lakes.
When the Romans came to Germany, they often saw a golden glitter in lakes and rivers. Closer examination revealed coins and bracelets, thrown in by Celts. This was done to appease, woe or thank the gods who were believed to live in the water.
The Greek gatekeeper to the underworld was the son of Erebus and Nyx. For an obolus, a coin laid into the mouth of the dead at the time of burial, he would ferry the soul over the rivers Acharon and Styx. Without a proper burial, a soul was condemmned to wander the shores for a hundred years before being permitted passage. Only a handful of exceptions occurred: Orpheus charmed Charon with his lyre, Heracles terrified him, Aeneas bribed him with the Golden Bough, and Odysseus who descended into hell to discourse with the ghosts of deceased heroes. Reportedly, there are several back entrances where Charon and his fee could be avoided.
Chinese temples feature many ponds with zig-zag bridges crossing them. The form of these bridges prevents ghosts from using them, since they can only cross water in a straight line.
The Greek goddess of the rainbow, daughter of Pontos and Gaia is a beautiful young woman with golden wings and winged sandals delivering messages from Zeus to the other gods and the humans.
Born as a normal mortal, Princess Juturna from the italian kingdome Rutilia tried to avoid a war with the invading Trojans, led by Aeneas. Unsuccessful, she drowned herself in a nearby spring, while her brother, King Turnus, died in battle. Zeus had mercy with her and tranformed her into a nymph and made her Goddess of the Still Waters. There was a fountain sacred to her in the Forum Romanum. Her day of honour is 11 January.
These Japanese water demons look like small, naked men, with a turtle's shield and a water-filled bowl-shaped head. They lurk in water for unsuspecting passers-by to drag them into the deep and devour them. There are two strange ways to avoid this fate. One is to carve one's name into a cucumber and throw it into the water. Sicne the kappa love cucumbers more than anything else, there is a good chance that they are distracted enough by that treat. Another choice is to bow before the demon. The demon is then obliged to bow back, pouring out the water on his head. As long as there is no water, the kappa is helpless, and during the time it takes to replenish the water, flight is possible.
Knuckers are said to live in deep ponds between the South Downs and the coast in England. The most famous of them was the Lyminster knuckle, near Arundel in Sussex.
A traditional Korean story:
The Roman God of the seas. Usually depicted with a large beard, an a tripod.
A German water-elf or water-nymph. Another term is Nöck.
The oldest of the Titans, the first race, son of Uranus and Gaea. He created the first ocean, a river that encircled the land and from which the stars rose. After finishing his creation, he married his sister Tethys, which has born him 3000 daughters, the Oceanoids and 3000 rivers.
The Greek God of the seas. Usually depicted with a large beard, an a tripod.
Sirona was a celtic goddess associated with healing springs, and healing in general. She is often found in connection to the celtic god of healing Grannus.
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