Some of the World's Most Famous Legends
History is full of legends that mystify and entertain. These legends of from different cultures around the world. Some are still held as strong beliefs, however some of them have faded away with time.
Here are the legends we share:
The Most Famous Legends of All Time
- Lady Godiva
- Robin Hood
- The Fountain of Youth
- Bloody Mary
- El Dorado
- King Arthur
- The Gordian Knot
- Yamashita's Treasures
- Prester John
The Legend of Lady Godiva
Lady Godiva is believed to be an Anglo Saxon woman who lived during the time of 980-1064 AD. She was the wife of the ruler of Coventry, England. She loved her husband dearly, but she always opposed the way her husband treated his people.
When her husband issued a heavy tax on the local people, she decided to protest by wandering the city naked. And so she did, covering herself only with her hair, she wandered the streets of the city. The woman was so highly respected that the entire city shut down their windows while she did so. The only exception was a tailor, who watched through a hole in his shutter as the naked woman roam the city.
The tailor was named "Peeping Tom".
Godiva’s husband abolished the law immediately after her protest.
The Legend of Robin Hood
Robin Hood is one of the most famous legendary characters of all time. Though his existence is not clearly verified, he is believed to be an Englishman from medieval times.
He was a thief who fought against injustice and tyranny by stealing from the rich and giving the money to the poor. It is believed that he had a group of men working for him whom he called his “Merry Men.”
The Legend of the Fountain of Youth
The legend of the fountain of youth tells about a special fountain which contains water with special powers. It is believed that by drinking this water, a person gains eternal youth. Nobody knows where this fountain is. American legends claim that it is somewhere in Florida, while European legends claim it is in Spain.
The Legend of Atlantis
It is believed that about 9,600 years ago there was an island named Atlantis. It was also a continent that sunk over time. The Ancient Greeks called this place a holy city and believed that it used to lie beyond the Pillars of Hercules. The reason it sunk, according to the legend, is because Greece were not successful in conquering Athens.
The logical explanation of the matter however is that the island sunk due to submarine convulsions or volcanic eruption. The location of Atlantis is alternately given as in the Mediterranean Sea or the Atlantic Ocean. According to research, however, there was never any such island. The matter has been under debate for centuries as many still believe that the island did exist.
The Legend of Bloody Mary
Bloody Mary is one of the most popular ghosts in the world. But who was she, really? No one actually knows. There are hundreds of legends about this famous legendary character.
Some say that she was a widow who killed her children, while some say she was a young child who got killed and is wandering around her grave.
The most common legend about Bloody Mary tells that if a person, after midnight, says "Bloody Mary" three times in front of the mirror, Mary's ghost will appear and kill the person.
Some legends also portray her as a good ghost, but mostly she is an evil spirit.
The Legend of El Dorado
The legend of El Dorado originated in South American during the 1530s. It is the story of a tribal chief who lived in a secret kingdom behind the waterfalls of the Amazon River. It is said that the chief of the tribe would cover himself with gold dust (which was present in an ample amount in his kingdom) and jump into the pure water. Legend has it that the story was brought to the world by Spanish wanderers who discovered the kingdom.
The Legend of King Arthur
King Arthur is a British legendary character who existed during medieval times and is believed to have led the defense of Britain against the Saxon invaders during the early 6th century. Many theories about his existence have been given by scholars over the centuries, while others say he never existed.
The Legend of the Gordian Knot
Gordian was an ancient Phrygian king who was prophesized by the gods to become the king of Phrygia. The prophecy told that the first man who enters the city with a cart will be the new king. When Gordian became King, he tied his cart to a tree using a special knot. It was then prophesized that the first man who opened the knot would be the new king. In 333 BC, Alexander entered the city. He sliced the knot with his sword and became the king.
The Legend of Yamashita’s Treasures
This legend is comparatively new. According to the legend, during World War II the Japanese General Tomoyuki Yamashita hid a treasure in caves somewhere in the Philippines. The treasure was actually stolen loot, consisting of gold items including bars and some antiques.
The Legend of Prester John
Prester John is believed to have been a king who ruled a nation somewhere in Europe during 12th-13th centuries. According to the legend, he was a righteous man and his kingdom was comprised of great wealth. His kingdom also consisted of magical objects and creatures. However, somehow his kingdom disappeared. Although today many people call it a mythical story, it was believed for many centuries and inspired adventurers to hunt for the lost kingdom and treasure.