"The Great Serpent's Eggs" Myth in Lanternal | World Anvil

"The Great Serpent's Eggs"

The tale of “The Great Serpent’s Eggs” is a popular bedtime story mostly among children in Miras. Though the myth has no known region of origin, it can be heard around the world. The story conveys the life of a titanic creature known only as The Great Serpent as it attempts to bear children. The story is notable among scholars for its various mentions of other mythical beasts and how it provides an origin myth for the the moon and what is believed to be the first dragon.


There once was a Great Serpent who was known to all and respected by many. She was as old as the earth and as long as the horizon, but among all things in the world she only craved one thing; to have a family. However, the Serpent didn’t know how, so she asked those near. She asked the Trees and they said, "Oh Great Serpent it is simple; to grow your family you must drop your fruit and from your fruit your children will grow." But the serpent did not grow fruit, so she asked the Fungus. And the Fungus said, “Oh Great Serpent, to make your family you must release your spores, and from your spores your children will grow.” But The Great Serpent did not have any spores so she asked the birds. And the bird spoke “a great serpent to create your family you must like your eggs."   "Eggs, of course. I shall lay an egg.” And she did. For a long time the great serpent laid with her egg waiting for her child, but her egg would not hatch. One day while with her egg The Great Serpent saw the birds flying overhead. “Sweet birds, I ask you, why won’t my egg hatch?"   "Oh great serpent it is almost winter and it and much too cold for eggs to hatch. You must wait for spring." And the birds flew away. But she had waited so long already, could there be any way to hatch her egg now?   “I could help you great serpent“, spoke a man, “I know somewhere where it is always warm. Give me your egg and I will let it hatch." The Great Serpent was so excited she gave her egg to the man, but he had tricked her for he was no man but a devil. When her egg hatched the Medusa was born, her body like a woman and her hair of snakes. The devil kept the daughter to himself and with her terrorized many. The Great Serpent learning that her child had been corrupted grew angry, locked the devil away inside a box, and sent her daughter where no one could hurt her. This made the great serpent sadder than ever before.   “What ever shall I do", she cried. One day the birds returned and saw the great serpent crying. They knew what had happened to her daughter. “Oh great serpent do not be sad.You should lay another egg, then you may have more children"   "Of course, I shall lay another egg," but the rest of the world had also learned of The Great Serpent's daughter and the terror she caused. They could not let The Serpent play another egg else they may be in danger. When the great serpent laid her second egg, the Worms came and broke it. It’s pieces becoming all of the snakes in the world.   The Great Serpent now knew that if it were to lay another egg she must keep it hidden, so when she laid her third egg she hit it in the oceans. But the water new and the Shadow of the Sea took away the egg.   Again she laid her fourth egg and hit it in the earth, but the Darklings of the Stone found it and took it away.   The Great Serpent thought and thought for somewhere where she could hide her egg where no one could reach it. Finally she laid her fifth egg and placed it in the sky. The beasts of the world tried and tried to take the egg, but they could not reach it. Alas neither could The Great Serpent. Alone in the sky the egg would never hatch and so it became the moon.   “Oh what shall I do? No matter where I hide my eggs they were are always lost.“ “Oh great serpent," saidthe birds once more, "Lay one more egg and hide it with us. We birds shall help it hatch and no one else will know but you” “Sweet birds, you have always been so kind to me. I shall give you my last egg knowing it will be safe.” And the great serpents final egg hatched under the watchful eye of the birds.   The daughter it bore was the most beautiful any had seen. Her body was strong like her mother and her tail, too, was as long as the horizon. Gifted to her by the birds that raised her, great wings so that no beast could match her. The creatures of the world looked in awe and asked for her name. She spoke the name her mother, The Great Serpent, had gave her in secret, "Unaturna".   Hearing her daughter speak the name she gave her, The Great Serpent was so happy she decided she never needed to lay another egg ever again.

Cover image: by Midjourney


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