The myth of Arachne is not as well known as other Greek mythology. The tale is of a young woman who had impressive weaving skill. So good in fact, that she thought she was better than the gods. She challenged an old lady in a weaving contest (the old lady turned out to be Athena, the Greek Goddess, in disguise). Arachne weaved scenes of Zeus being unfaithful to his wife, and Athena was enraged. Realizing what she had done, Arachne tried to hang herself, but, having pity, Athena changed her rope to a cobweb at the last moment, and Arachne transformed into a spider beast.
Below I have created what I imagine this beast to look like hiding in her cave. Click the image for a larger version.
This week I have created a Basilisk. The legend of the basilisk has changed overtime, and had several variations from the original concept. The most common concept of the basilisk today was created in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, and was depicted as an enormous serpent.
The traditional idea of a basilisk is a creature that came from a serpent’s egg, but hatched by a chicken, thus having both qualities of both a rooster and a snake. Here are two olden-day depictions-
Woodblock Print of a basilisk from Ulisse Aldrovandi, Monstrorum historia, 1642
The basilisk and the weasel, print attributed to Wenceslas Hollar.
My concept was simply a combination of what I might imagine would be the offspring of a chicken and snake. With a hard beak, two snake-like front legs, and a long serpent body, my basilisk hides in caves, and going along with tradition, a gaze into it’s eyes could end one’s life instantaneously.