Thursday, November 7, 2013

Giraffes in Religion and Mythology

     Seen by most as a captivating, beautiful species, the giraffe has been a character in many myths and legends throughout time. Scholars of the past have been at a loss of words to describe their fascinating characteristics such as their long necks and limbs. Many myths deemed the now known giraffe as rather a camelopard, half camel and half leopard due to its features.
     There are many myths as to how giraffes obtained their long magnificent necks. An example of such a myth is          
Tim Gets His Head Stuck in a Tree:
Alvin stole Tim's ball and threw it up in a tree. The other giraffes climbed on top of each other to try and reach it. Tim was the highest and they all fell, but his head became stuck high in the tree. The other giraffes pulled on his legs and he finally came down, but not after his neck had been permanently stretched. The long neck turned out to have advantages. When other giraffes saw that he could eat tree leaves without jumping, they went to the same tree and had their necks stretched too.”
 
Another myth is one that not only incorporates how giraffes got their long necks, but also how they obtained their name.
Boulder on the Neck:
“Hades and Boulder threw a rock on the head of an animal that resembled a leopard, says Nick's Myth Page. Zeus had a strong man remove the rock from the animal, but not before it had stretched out its neck to twice its normal length trying to free itself. Zeus asked the animal its name, and it replied "Gerald Raffe."
 
 
Resources
 
1. Nelson, Ted. "Historical Myths About Why Giraffes Have Long Necks." EHow. EHow.Com, 25 July 
           2011. Web. 06 Nov. 2013. <http://www.ehow.com/info_8785102_historical-myths-giraffes
           long-necks.html>.

2. Talley, Trevor. "Myths & Legends of the Giraffe." EHow. EHow.Com, 27 Mar. 2011. Web. 06 Nov.
           2013. <http://www.ehow.com/info_8119665_myths-legends-giraffe.html>.

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