Dragons

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O to be a dragon, a symbol of the power of Heaven — of silkworm size or immense; at times invisible. ~ Marianne Moore
I believe in fairies, the myths, dragons. It all exists, even if it's in your mind. Who's to say that dreams and nightmares aren't as real as the here and now? ~ John Lennon

A Dragon (from Greek δράκων (drákōn), "dragon, serpent of huge size, water-snake") is a legendary creature, typically with serpentine or reptilian traits, which exist in the myths of many cultures. Western dragons are usually portrayed as vile, sinister and dangerous, while Chinese dragons traditionally represent auspicious powers, particularly control over water, rainfall, hurricane, and floods and symbolize potency, strength, and good luck. Western and oriental traditions arose separately, but have influenced each other, particularly with the cross-cultural contact of recent centuries.

Quotes[edit]

What I create is not from this world, because the people who need my help suffer from afflictions that science cannot treat. ~ The Dragon in Selfless, Brave and True
Fairy tales do not give a child his first idea of bogey. What fairy tales give the child is his first clear idea of the possible defeat of bogey. The baby has known the dragon intimately ever since he had an imagination. What the fairy tale provides for him is a St. George to kill the dragon. ~ G. K. Chesterton.
A poet can write about a man slaying a dragon, but not about a man pushing a button that releases a bomb. ~ W. H. Auden.
  • A poet can write about a man slaying a dragon, but not about a man pushing a button that releases a bomb.
    • W. H. Auden, quoted in Best Quotes of '54, '55, '56 (1957) edited by James Beasley Simpson
  • Fairy tales do not give a child his first idea of bogey. What fairy tales give the child is his first clear idea of the possible defeat of bogey. The baby has known the dragon intimately ever since he had an imagination. What the fairy tale provides for him is a St. George to kill the dragon.
  • The age of chivalry is past. … Bores have succeeded to dragons, and I have shivered too many lances in vain ever to hope for their extirpation.
  • Conquer the demon of jealousy, that dragon which slays love under the pretence of keeping it alive.
    • Havelock Ellis, in Little Essays of Love and Virtue (1922) by Havelock Ellis, p. 100
  • Luckdragons are among the strangest animals in Fantastica. They bear no resemblance to ordinary dragons, which look like loathsome snakes and live in deep caves, diffusing a noxious stench and guarding some real or imaginary treasure. Such spawn of chaos are usually wicked or ill-tempered, they have batlike wings with which they can rise clumsily and noisily into the air, and they spew fire and smoke. Luckdragons are creatures of air, warmth, and pure joy. Despite their great size, they are as light as a summer cloud, and consequently need no wings for flying. They swim in the air of heaven as fish swim in water. Seen from the earth, they look like slow lightning flashes. The most amazing thing about them is their song. Their voice sounds like the golden note of a large bell, and when they speak softly the bell seems to be ringing in the distance. Anyone who has heard this sound will remember it as long as he lives and tell his grandchildren about it.
  • And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
    And prevailed not
    ; neither was their place found any more in heaven.
    And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
  • We are a restless breed, we dragons, never really satisfied; we love change for its own sake.
    • Donn Kushner, A Book Dragon, chapter 10
  • I believe in fairies, the myths, dragons. It all exists, even if it's in your mind. Who's to say that dreams and nightmares aren't as real as the here and now?
    • John Lennon, quoted in Secret of the Dragon's Eye : Book One (2007) by Derek Hart
  • It's a metaphor of human bloody existence, a dragon. And if that wasn't bad enough, it's also a bloody great hot flying thing.
  • I'm an outlaw, not a hero. I never intended to rescue you. We're our own dragons as well as our own heroes, and we have to rescue ourselves from ourselves.
  • Advance our standards, set upon our foes Our ancient world of courage fair St. George Inspire us with the spleen of fiery dragons.
  • I desired dragons with a profound desire. Of course, I in my timid body did not wish to have them in the neighbourhood, intruding into my relatively safe world, in which it was, for instance, possible to read stories in peace of mind, free from fear. But the world that contained even the imagination of Fбfnir was richer and more beautiful, at whatever cost of peril.
  • In this time it happed that there was at Rome a dragon in a pit, which every day slew with his breath more than three hundred men. Then came the bishops of the idols unto the emperor and said unto him: O thou most holy emperor, sith the time that thou hast received Christian faith the dragon which is in yonder fosse or pit slayeth every day with his breath more than three hundred men. Then sent the emperor for S. Silvester and asked counsel of him of this matter. S. Silvester answered that by the might of God he promised to make him cease of his hurt and blessure of this people. Then S. Silvester put himself to prayer, and S. Peter appeared to him and said: "Go surely to the dragon and the two priests that be with thee take in thy company, and when thou shalt come to him thou shalt say to him in this manner: Our Lord Jesus Christ which was born of the Virgin Mary, crucified, buried and arose, and now sitteth on the right side of the Father, this is he that shall come to deem and judge the living and the dead, I commend thee Sathanas that thou abide him in this place till he come. Then thou shalt bind his mouth with a thread, and seal it with thy seal , wherein is the imprint of the cross. Then thou and the two priests shall come to me whole and safe, and such bread as I shall make ready for you ye shall eat.
Thus as S. Peter had said, S. Silvester did. And when he came to the pit, he descended down one hundred and fifty steps, bearing with him two lanterns, and found the dragon, and said the words that S. Peter had said to him, and bound his mouth with the thread, and sealed it, and after returned, and as he came upward again he met with two enchanters which followed him for to see if he descended, which were almost dead of the stench of the dragon, whom he brought with him whole and sound, which anon were baptized, with a great multitude of people with them. Thus was the city of Rome delivered from double death, that was from the culture and worshiping of false idols, and from the venom of the dragon.
  • Compiled by Jacobus de Voraigne, "The Life of St. Sylvester." The Golden Legend or Lives of the Saints. Trans. William Caxton. Ed. F. S. Ellis. London: Temple Classics, 1900. Reproduced at www.Aug.edu/augusta/iconography/goldenLegend, Augusta State University.

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