ENVIS Centre, Ministry of Environment & Forest, Govt. of India

Printed Date: Thursday, November 26, 2020

Birds in Legends, Mythology and Religion - I


Country or Religion Mythological  creature Role and Myth  

Fenghuang Mythological birds that reign over all other birds.


A Fenghuang on the roof of Longshan Temple in Taipei (Source : Wikipedia)


Zhu Què  (Vermilion Bird)  A mythological spirit creature of the Chinese constellations.

The Vermilion Bird on the gates of a Han Dynasty mausoleum complex (Source : Wikipedia)

Xiānhè (Red-crowned Cranes Grus japonensis)

In Chinese mythology cranes are generally symbolically connected with the idea of immortality.

Pine, Plum and Cranes, 1759 AD, by Shen Quan (1682–1760). Hanging scroll, ink and colour on silk. The Palace Museum, Beijing. (Source : Wikipedia)

GREEK MYTHOLOGY Griffin A legendary creature with the head and wings of an eagle and the body of a lion. 

Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna, Austria

Source :  http://www.theoi.com/Gallery/K5.7.html

Phoenix A mythical sacred firebird. It is a long-lived bird that is cyclically regenerated or reborn. Associated with the sun, a phoenix obtains new life by arising from the ashes of its predecessor.

A phoenix depicted in a book of mythological creatures by F.J. Bertuch(1747-1822) (Source : Wikipedia)



Son of Daedalus who dared to fly too near the sun on wings of feathers and wax.

Source: http://www.mythweb.com/encyc/gallery/icarus_c.html