Giants Take Children Myth in The Ocean | World Anvil
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Giants Take Children

Heads up: this article discusses infant abandonment. Proceed with caution.

The women say that giants take children away. "Obey women, do not stray far from us, or else the giants will take you. Taller than trees, quieter than shade, stronger than wind, faster than water, hungrier than fire. They will take you and you will die if you do not obey."
Thus begins the Song of Journey, as carved into the first figure of the Journey's End statues. It is the sort of story parents use to frighten their young children into good behavior. But that is not its purpose. As it continues, it suggests that the giants are not the monsters that the women make them seem:
The giants do, they do take children. They take new children when they mourn for old. They take new children who are alone. They take new children who are in pain. They take new children who need taking. They take new children that women leave to die.
It is risky to interpret such ancient myths as if they were fact. At the same time, it is foolish to take them as pure invention. Even the most unbelievable stories have a root of truth. For example, the theme of abandoned infants is repeated elsewhere in the Songs, making it reasonable to assume this was indeed once the practice of the River Culture. The existence of enormous people rescuing such infants is far less certain, and may be a storytelling device meant to soften an otherwise tragic history. These giants also serve a prophetic purpose in the narrative:
The giants say that women will take us away. "Be careful, do not stay here, or else the women will take you. Harder than trees, colder than shade, rougher than wind, angrier than water, more dangerous than fire. They will take you and you will die if you do not leave here."
The conclusion of the third verse, so closely echoing the first, is a deliberate upending of the women's warning. Again, it is unwise to take this myth at face value. But fact or legend, something caused the River Culture bands to leave a secure home and take a dangerous journey into unknown territory. There may never have been real giants, but there very likely were real monsters.
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