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Mythical Monsters from Ancient Greece - An Introduction for KS2

Updated: Jun 20, 2023

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:

Typhon was so tall his head brushed the stars! His lower half was two large snakes, he had dragon heads instead of fingers & wings so vast that they could block out the sun.


Powers:

The most powerful and terrifying monster in all of Ancient Greek Mythology.


Defeated by:

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


How:

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



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. The creature's fire breath melted the lead head of the spear, causing the deadly toxin to enter her stomach and kill 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 dog heads) and 12 tentacle legs.


Powers:

They positioned themselves on 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 lucky 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:

The Minotaur 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 terrifying creature.


Defeated by:

Theseus (with a little help from Ariadne).


How:

Ariadne gave Theseus a ball of thread which he used to navigate the labyrinth. He defeated the Minotaur (some say he managed to strangle it with just his bare hands!) and 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! The brave Greeks 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 ordered them to tie him to the mast of his ship. That way only Odysseus could hear and be tempted by the Sirens' song. However, thanks to the ropes, he was unable to steer the ship to its destruction.


 

If you are a primary teacher then you'll definitely want Imagining History to bring their 'Ancient Greece: Hero Training' Interactive workshop to your school.


Our Award-Winning sessions combine role-play, storytelling, demonstrations, and drama and performance to bring history to life for your students.


In our 'Ancient Greece: Hero Training' workshop your students will learn all about the Myths & Legends of Ancient Greece by walking in the sandals of the great Greek heroes themselves.




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