• Imagining History

Mythical Monsters from Ancient Greece - An Introduction for KS2

Updated: Oct 5

If you love hearing about the Ancient Greek Heroes and their battles against the most fearsome creatures imaginable, then you'll love reading about the fiercest Monsters from Ancient Greek mythology:

That's Typhon on the right - with the snake legs!

TYPHON (TYPHOEUS):


Appearance:

So tall his head brushes the stars, his lower half was two large snakes, dragon heads instead of fingers & wings that could block out the sun


Powers:

The most powerful and terrifying monster of Ancient Greek Mythology.


Defeated by:

Zeus, god of the sky, lightning and the thunder and ruler of the gods on Mount Olympus


How:

Zeus threw one hundred lighting bolts at Typhon before throwing him into the pit of Tartarus. Zeus then popped a mountain on top of him to seal him in for good measure!



CHIMERA:


Appearance:

Head & body of a lion, a snake's head for a tail & a goat's head that pops up on her back


Powers:

Invincibility & her goat's head breathes fire


Defeated By:

The hero Bellerophon (& the winged horse, Pegasus)


How:

Flying on Pegasus, Bellerophon threw a spear down the Chimera's throat where her fire breath melted the lead spear head and killed her



THE CHARYBDIS & SCYLLA:


Appearance:

Charybdis and Scylla were giant sea monsters. Nobody knows what Charybdis looked like except for the giant whirlpool she created by sucking up the ocean's waters. Scylla had 6 heads (often described as looking like dogs heads) and 12 tentacle legs.


Powers:

They positioned themselves either side of a narrow passage of water called the Strait of Messina. Sailors would have to choose which monster to try to sail past.


Outsmarted by:

Nobody. Jason & his Argonauts were one of the few to pass with no casualties (and he had to get a Goddess to help him!)



THE MINOTAUR:


Appearance:

The head of a bull and the body of a man.


Powers:

He had a taste for human flesh and was hidden in a Labyrinth under the city of Crete. Every year 14 Athenians would be sacrificed to the Minotaur.


Defeated by:

Theseus (with a little help from Ariadne)


How:

Ariadne gave him a ball of thread which he used to navigate the labyrinth. He defeated the Minotaur (some say he managed it with just his bare hands!) then followed the string back out of the maze.


Polyphemus being blinded by Odysseus

CYCLOPS:


Appearance:

One-eyed giants


Powers:

Man-eating, lawless monsters who didn’t even fear the gods


Outsmarted By:

Odysseus


How:

Odysseus blinded the cyclops Polyphemus after Polyphemus trapped Odysseus and his men in a cave and started eating them all! They snuck out of the cave by hiding underneath the bellies of Polyphemus’ flock of sheep!


SIRENS:


Appearance:

Half birds, half beautiful women


Powers:

Luring sailors to their doom by singing sweet songs to tempt the sailors to sail towards a rocky island where their ships would crash.


Outsmarted By:

Odysseus (again! He was a clever chap).


How:

Odysseus had his men put wax in their ears and tie him to the mast of the ship. That way only Odysseus could hear the Sirens song but was not tempted by them.



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