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Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Reddit]

21. Clover (Clovie)

  • Fictional: Cloverfield franchise

While the name of the creature is never mentioned in the original film, most have called the Cloverfield monster “Clover” or “Clovie.” It ultimately just depends on who you’re asking. What was it? We’re essentially told that the creature is an interdimensional alien. We are not exactly sure from where. When we finally see it in the original film and those that followed, we see a creature that stands around 25 stories tall. This estimates out to around 250 feet in height.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Screen Crush]
The creature is tall, but also skinny. It appears to be quadrupedal but can stand upright for short periods of time. In spite of its incredibly large stature, we’re told it’s actually an infant. Therefore, we must assume that it does not know what is going on and is frightened by its surroundings. In spite of this, Clovie can withstand high-end missiles, artillery shells, and bombs with little to no injuries. We later see teeth-like fingers that are used to help consume human beings. Regardless of what movie Clover falls into, it is one of the top monsters around and nearly impossible to get rid of.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via The Walt Disney Company]

20. Sirens/Mermaids

  • Greco-Roman Mythology

We often hear of Mermaids or Sirens in literature as well as movies these days. Yet they were originally mythological creatures that were best described by Homer in The Odyssey. In it, Homer claims that Sirens would sing or whistle. While on the water, this sound made men look into often foggy environments to see beautiful women on the rocks. Those women made some men jump into the water to go after them. Yet very few ever came back. The Sirens lead sailers into traps to capture and eat them.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via GBHBL.com]
Half-Human/Half-Fish, the Sirens are like sharks and will eat any meat they can get their hands on. Movies like The Little Mermaid tried to make mermaids look like nice, loveable people a lot like us. Yet this was taken from Hans Christian Anderson’s original story. Where he kept the mermaids similar to their mythological background. Which included a lot of, shall we say “non-Disney things.” Either way, these Sirens were top monsters in mythology, and stories were told about them by sailors for centuries afterward.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Juan Manuel Kreiter/Shutterstock.com]

19. Bigfoot

  • North American Mythology

The mythology behind Bigfoot has grown over the years, to a point where it has become quite insane, in all honesty. The actual name of “Big Foot” was first used for a Wyandot Chief back in the 1830s. He actually did have a large foot and was quite an imposing figure. Later on, a man named Spotted Elk was given the nickname of Chief Big Foot. Of course, he died during the Wounded Knee Massacre in 1890.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Shad Selby/Shutterstock.com]
While Bigfoot normally connects to the believed appearance, it’s likely that the legend began with a mix-up between the Native American Chiefs and notable large Bears. Considering the name of the Chiefs was clearly present and there were, in fact, several large bears in North America, it was easy to see. The California Golden Bear lived in that early American period. Thus, it is likely that this massive bear left behind large prints. Either way, the Bigfoot legend has become a major deal. There are entire television shows revolving around it!

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Geek Tyrant]

18. The Creature From The Black Lagoon

  • Fictional: Creature from the Black Lagoon

We’re not sure how to discuss this without sounding weird. But it’s plainly obvious that Creature from the Black Lagoon was one of the most notable horror movies ever. Yet it was a big deal in its time due to most never seeing anything like it beforehand. It was made in the 1950s and 3D had become a big deal at the time, in spite of its infancy in films. It was shot in 3D and projected in theaters using a polarized light method. The audience then wore gray polarizing filter glasses to see it.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Mental Floss]
Other audience members later saw the movie in 2D. Yet its original 3D version helped to make this weird-looking “creature” even more terrifying. That notable nature helped to make the movie legendary. The Creature itself looked impressive for its time. Coming out of the water, it played on people’s fears about what was truly in the deep ocean. It had a humanoid appearance but almost prehistoric as if a species of human never left the water and evolved into this. Truly, it lands well even today as one of the top monsters in movie history.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Sony Interactive Entertainment]

17. Jörmungandr

  • Norse Mythology

Those who know about Norse Mythology will be happy to see Jörmungandr make this list. Of course, those who play the God of War video games will most certainly be a fan. This terrifying sea creature from mythology appears like a snake mixed with some type of dragon. The God of War games revolve around the Greek/Roman Gods in Mythology, so connecting Norse Mythology to things made sense. The versions you might read about differ depending on where it’s used.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Ertaç Altınöz – Twitter]
Of course, Jörmungandr also appears in Marvel Comic books or films involving Thor, due to his connection to Norse mythology. The Jörmungandr (also known as the Midgard Serpent) is so long that he can wrap all the way around Earth or “Midgard.” He keeps his tail in his mouth, almost as a protecting shield. As the offspring of Loki and Andrboda, once the serpent releases its tail, “Ragnorok” begins. In Mythology, Thor battles and slays the serpent but dies in the process.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Ubisoft]

16. The Minotaur

  • Greco-Roman Mythology

The Minotaur originally began as an Ancient Greek mythological creature but was soon adopted by the Romans when the cultures began to blend more. The creature was one of the top monsters of its believed time. Described by the Roman Poet Ovid, the Minotaur was both part man and part bull. He lived at the very center of the maze-like construction known as The Labyrinth. Of course, the Labyrinth was ordered for construction by the Crete King Minos. This all began when Minos prayed to the God Posideon for a snow-white bull to show the Greek God’s favor in him.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Delcarmat/Shutterstock.com]
But he got on the wrong side of the Sea God and thus, Posideon made his wife fall in love with a bull. She then birthed The Minotaur. After growing into an adult, the creature became untamed and ferocious, causing it to eat humans. That was when The Labyrinth would be designed by Daedalus and his son Icarus. Warriors from all over the known world were said to have tried to best one of the world’s top monsters in The Minotaur. With the head of a bull and the body of a man, it was apparently powerful and God-like. The creature even killed the Athenian Warrior and Hero, Theseus. Few myths compare to The Minotaur.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Momentaj]

15. Frankenstein’s Monster

  • Fictional: Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus

Unlike other top monsters on this list, people tend to often misunderstand the name of the creature. Known mostly as just “the monster,” it would eventually come to be known as “Frankenstein’s Monster” due to being created by the scientist Victor Frankenstein. First coming into the world of fiction in Mary Shelley’s 1818 novel known as Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus, it was eventually made into a motion picture several times in the 1900s. Shelly was just 18 when she first started the book and it was published by the time she was 20 years old.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Uffish Thoughts]
The movies just used the “Frankenstein” part of the story, and due to this, the monstrous creation was dubbed “Frankenstein” by colloquial mistake. The creature was notable for wanting to eat brains, moving slowly, and is incredibly powerful. While the monster was not always murderous, it acted out at times of fear or to protect its creator. We later find out that the monster learns to be quite articulate and intelligent. Yet the damage done in its earlier life made a major impact that the world would never forget.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Dezignor/Shutterstock.com]

14. Cerberus

  • Greek Mythology

Cerberus was known as “the hound of Hades.” People may also know him by the name “Hellhound” in other mythology or folklore. The dog was multi-headed (3 heads), had a snake for a tale, as well as snakes coming from other parts of its body too. In some stories, the hound is even able to breathe and spew fire. It is eventually captured by Heracles as part of his 12 Labors, which obviously angers his Uncle Hades.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Rudall30/Shutterstock.com]
Due to the size of the creature as well as how it appears, it could be released into the world to kill many humans for Hades to take into the Underworld. However, only Cerberus guards the Gates to the Underworld. Capturing him was important for Hercules because it would leave the Gates unguarded and therefore allow anyone to enter. Cerberus was, usually, the only thing stopping people from entering or exiting. His importance alone makes him one of the top monsters in mythology.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Bloody Disgusting]

13. Death Angels

  • Fictional: A Quiet Space

We’re not sure what possessed John Krasinski and his co-writers to develop major monsters only to call them “Death Angels,” but things worked out. A Quiet Place did very well on a small budget and the second installment, delayed by the COVID-19 Pandemic, will likely do well too. That said, the premise is compelling. There are creatures that continue to wipe out the human population on Earth. The kicker is that they are completely blind yet have incredible hearing.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via A Quiet Place Wiki – Fandom]
The sound is what allows them to track down and rip through a human. This is why the world has to be quiet. They cannot be taken out by normal means due to their armor, which protects them from gunfire and even bombs. They are apparently alien predators that came down to Earth, causing a post-apocalyptic world to exist. The Death Angels are certainly not angelic in appearance, as these top monsters are horrific with a face that even a mother could not love.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Daniel Eskridge/Shutterstock.com]

12. Chimera

  • Greek Mythology

Written about by Homer in The Iliad and The Odyssey, many have assumed Chimeras were real due to some accuracy from Homer’s stories. The Chimera was described as a Lion with the head of a goat coming out of its back and a tail with a snakehead on the end. Oh yeah, and it could breathe fire. It’s apparently related to many other top monsters from Greek Mythology too such as the Nemean Lion and even the infamous Sphinx. It is not hard to see why people feared the Chimera.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Pegasophoto/Shutterstock.com]
If you had to put animals together that people feared a lot at the time, it would likely be lions and snakes. If you were to put all of this together, naturally that would make a person freak out. Since that is exactly what a Chimera was, it’s easy to fear and Homer’s stories did not put an end to that, clearly. That said, the Chimera was later defeated by the Greek hero Bellerophon as well as the creature Pegasus. Due to Pegasus’ ability to fly, Bellerophon shot the Chimera with an arrow to kill it.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Daniel Eskridge/Shutterstock.com]

11. The Yeti

  • Tibetian Mythology

Also called the Abominable Snowman, stories revolving about the Yeti go back several centuries. The creature is said to have lived in the Himalayan Mountains. It comes from the Pre-Buddhist world among the Himalayan people. The people here, known as the Lepcha at the time, worshipped some type of “Glacier Being.” Apparently, it was thought to be the God of the Hunt. Yet followers of the Bön Religion also believed blood from Mirgod or “wild man” was useful in various mystical ceremonies.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Warpaint/Shutterstock.com]
The creature for them was said to have resembled that of a “White Ape” that carried a large stone for a weapon. It also made a whistling-swoosh sound, which is the reasoning for why the Mountains have such a sound. It is quite likely that during the early AD period, when the Earth was a bit warmer, some great apes lived at higher altitudes. Thereby giving us the White Ape that has been referenced. Yet myths sometimes take off and take on a world of their own, especially when it concerns some of history’s top monsters.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via EA_stasy/Shutterstock.com]

10. The Kraken

  • Norse Mythology

We’ve all heard the legend of the Kraken. It was a sea monster mentioned for hundreds of years by sailors. They were most commonly linked to pirates who told tall tales consistently. Yet the story of the Kraken first began with the Vikings. It is widely believed that the tale of the Kraken comes from real-life accounts of giant squids. We know it is possible that Vikings would have come across giant squids in their travels. Of course, stories about their sea travels could take on a life of their own.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Daniel Eskridge/Shutterstock.com]
This is likely why the Kraken took off and ended up being used in numerous fictional stories. The fact that the origin began from real giant squids, likely found in the waters of Norway and Greenland, is very compelling. We still do have giant squids and octopuses in the ocean today. Of course, they are nothing like what we know the Kraken to be like. The fact that the Kracken appeared out of nowhere to take out any ship it wanted clearly made people fear the open sea. In our book, that puts you in the top monsters category for sure.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Warner Bros. Pictures]

9. Pennywise the Dancing Clown

  • Fictional: IT

Pennywise the Dancing Clown might be some sort of murderous clown from the IT films, but the character is by no means just some evil guy in a clown costume. Rather, Pennywise is a true monster. In Stephen King’s novel, IT, Pennywise is actually a shapeshifting monster that originates from a void that is contained and surrounded by the Universe. It is referred to simply as “The Macroverse.” The creature managed to escape and arrive on Earth via an asteroid impact.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Warner Bros. Pictures]
Pennywise would prey on indigenous tribal people before going into a major sleep for millions of years. When humans arrived yet again in the land of Derry, it fell into a 27-year slumber off and on. It would wake up for one year each time to feed on human fears. He loved to prey on children the most and takes the form of what they fear the most. While Pennywise can prey on adults, they are harder to scare so it will seek out humans with weaker wills. Truly, the clown is one of fiction’s top monsters and there is no disputing it.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Refluo/Shutterstock.com]

8. Dragons

  • Several Mythologies

It’s pretty hard to narrow down one, legitimate mythology that Dragons come from. They are all throughout Greek, Roman, and Norse Mythology. Some even claim it is referenced in some religious literature too. When we think of dragons, we’re likely thinking of flying creatures that appear like lizards in most of their notable features. They are usually massive in size and can shoot fire out of their mouths.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Melkor3D/Shutterstock.com]
Essentially, we’re thinking about the very same dragons you see on Game of Thrones, for example. Dragons have become a major part of literature, especially revolving around a fantasy-driven plot. They were also heavily connected to the Medieval time period. Most nowadays feel that the legend began when people first came across large monitor lizards such as the Komodo Dragon. Their saliva is poisonous and their bite is horrific, if the saliva enters your bloodstream it burns heavily. Thus, the fire-breathing concept with other fantasy elements thrown in.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via OSORIOartist/Shutterstock.com]

7. Loch Ness Monster

  • Scottish Mythology

The Loch Ness Monster has been said to be living in the waters of Scotland for hundreds of years. Top monsters like this have taken on a rich heritage that connects them with their location. We talk of Nessie and Scotland in the same sentence, so why would the Scots ever want to stop talking about the monster? The story of Nessie originates from Adomnán’s Life of St. Columba. He writes that he came across men as they buried a man near the River Ness.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Catmando/Shutterstock.com]
When he asks what happened, they claimed a “water beast” mauled him and dragged him underwater. Columba sent a man to swim across the river to test this, and the beast came up to him. It stopped when Columba said, “go no further.” People bought into the story about the monster because Columba was a major name in the world of Christianity. He is credited with spreading the gospel heavily across Europe during the Hiberno-Scottish Mission. Why would a man of God lie, right? Why indeed…

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via 20th Century Studios]

6. The Xenomorphs

  • Fictional: Alien Franchise

The Xenomorphs are a powerful endoparasitoid extraterrestrial species. Yet unlike other alien species in fiction, this species does not have a world to itself or even a major culture. They are not technically sound, so they lack a lot of the major technology other alien species possess too. The Xenomorph species is primal and predatory with only one goal in mind. To self-preserve the lives of their species and eliminate all other lifeforms on the planet they wish to call home.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via 20th Century Studios]
Our bad luck in all of this is that these top monsters chose Earth as their new home. They see us as a threat and we must die as a result of this fear. Potentially the biggest nightmares we’ve had in life is how the species creates new life. The eggs are put inside humans through forced implantation, once they are ready to come out, they hatch and break-through human chests. Then mature from a child into an adult within a few hours.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Daniel Eskridge/Shutterstock.com]

5. Moby Dick

  • Fictional: Moby-Dick; or, The Whale

The author of the story known as Moby Dick; or, The Whale, Herman Melville, actually patterned his story after a real event that was claimed to have happened to a crew of men.  Few believed their sea tale, but after Moby Dick was published, intrigue began to set in making people wonder if this had some truth to it in some way. There was a whale in history that you could look to as a possible Moby Dick.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Balazs Petheo]
It’s called the Livyatan Melvillei, this species of whale lived around 12 to 13 million years ago. It was the size of a modern sperm whale that ate other whales and anything else they felt like. Modern sperm whales use suction in the water to grab food. Yet the Livyatan Melvillei operated like Orcas, using their teeth to bite into and tear their prey apart. That novel was certainly not completely a fictional tale if the story it was based on involved a whale, like Livyatan Melvillei.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via DomCritelli/Shutterstock.com]

4. Cyclops

  • Multiple Mythologies

It seems that every major mythology has some version of the Cyclops. The biggest stories they are connected to are Theogony by Hesiod as well as The Odyssey by Homer. In the former, there is a group of Cyclops creatures known as Brontes, Steropes, and Arges. They actually made Zeus’ thunderbolt. Meanwhile, in Homer’s story, the creatures are uncivilized shepherds.  They are encountered by Odysseus on his travels.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Delcarmat/Shutterstock.com]
Of course, the other most notable use has to be the Cyclopean Walls of Mycenae and Tiryns. Cyclops are usually referenced as One-Eyed beings that are generally large. Most use several grunts as their language. They were basically large Great Apes. Regardless of where or how they are used, they tend to be gigantic with extreme power. However, they are usually solitary and only go into normal civilizations in rare instances. If you make them angry, especially by invading their home, they are top monsters who will rip you in two.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via WIRED]

3. The Predator

  • Fictional: Predator Franchise

It might be getting old to read about alien humanoids, but we all know The Predator belongs on this list. We first see The Predator in rare instances in the original Predator film. All we know is that it is using some type of cloaking technology and has advanced thermal imaging that can track humans with ease. The creature is seemingly a sportsman first and a cold-blooded killer second. It does not want to kill an unarmed person because there’s no sport in that.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via 20th Century Studios]
This is why it might spare the lives of humans that are injured, out of bullets, or unarmed entirely. Exclusively, they are about the hunt and that means taking out several Armed Forces members. While it will use weapons, the Predator also does not mind a hand-to-hand combat opportunity. The Predator rarely loses, even when it does. Due to the massive destruction it causes, we feel the alien known as The Predator deserves to be ranked highly among the top monsters in history.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Warner Bros. Pictures]

2. King Kong

  • Fictional: King Kong Franchise

You could state that King Kong is nothing more than a great ape with an overactive pituitary gland but this giant gorilla is much more than that. Kong first appeared in movie form back in 1933 and has since been dubbed “the Eighth Wonder of the World” by many. The creature is supposedly a prehistoric ape and not a regular ape that we might see elsewhere. In fact, it even connects somewhat to humans as it will often move around in a humanoid fashion, especially in its upright walking pattern.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Warner Bros. Pictures]
Kong possesses semi-human intelligence with major physical strength. The size of Kong often differs from original movies due to the way sets had to be built as well as how Kong himself had to be constructed. Today, we can use CGI but back then it was all model work. This is why he has been between 40 to 70 feet in films. The most recent films have him at over 100 feet tall, however. Kong is the last of his species, we assume. He is territorial of his home, yet he does connect with some humans and allows them near. Kong is the King of Skull Island, and you best not anger the King, feeble humans.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Warner Bros. Pictures]

1. Godzilla

  • Fictional: Godzilla Franchise

What is a King to a God, right? Of course, like other Japanese monsters, Godzilla had a rocky start to his initial existence due to the lack of CGI for most of the early films. However, the origin of the character has largely remained the same. Godzilla is a prehistoric sea monster that was somehow awakened and even empowered by nuclear radiation. This was a genius idea by his Japanese creators because Godzilla first appeared in the 1950s.

Ranking The Top Monsters From Myth and Fiction
[Image via Warner Bros. Pictures]
Yet just a decade prior, Japan was bombed by the United States in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Therefore, a creature that came out of that was awesome. While Godzilla was initially a villain, portrayed as an out-of-control monster, he’d eventually be used as an anti-hero. One that saves humans and defends them from the other monsters, some of which the world has not seen, at least yet. When you have a list of top monsters, it is not complete without the King of the Monsters for sure.

 

Sources:

Warner Bros. Pictures

Legendary Pictures

Hanna-Barbera

Tristar Pictures

Hollywood Reporter

Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick; or, The Whale Novel

Stephen King’s IT Novel & Movie Series

Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus Novel

Homer’s Iliad & The Odyssey

A Quiet Place Film

Alien Movie Series

Godzilla Movie Series

King Kong Movie Series

Creature from the Black Lagoon Film

Cloverfield Film Series

History.com

American-Literature.com

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Norsemythology.org

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