The Four Mythological Beasts

Another item for my fourfold menagerie is the four symbolic mythological beasts of China. They are associated with the Four Cardinal Directions and the Four Seasons.

  • The Vermilion Bird (South, Summer, named Zhūquè or Ling Guang)
  • The Azure Dragon (East, Spring, named Qīnglóng or Meng Zhang)
  • The Black Turtle (North, Winter, named Xuánwǔ or Zhi Ming)
  • The White Tiger (West, Fall, named Báihǔ or Jian Bing)

They are also part of Japanese folklore and I show the Japanese names of these four god beasts to the right, mostly because I am more familiar with them: Suzaku, Seiryu, Genbu, and Byakko.

Further Reading:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_Symbols_(China)

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/TheFourGods

https://allthetropes.org/wiki/The_Four_Gods

http://readingjapanesehistory.blogspot.com/2010/03/four-gods-protecting-kyoto.html

http://koei.wikia.com/wiki/Four_Gods

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-Eight_Mansions

Notes:

It was nice to see the Four Beasts in the opening ceremony at the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea.

[*8.104, *10.64]

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