Griffin  

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True and False Griffins from John Ruskin's Modern Painters (Part IV. Of Many Things), first published in 1856.
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True and False Griffins from John Ruskin's Modern Painters (Part IV. Of Many Things), first published in 1856.

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The griffin, griffon, or gryphon (Greek: γρύφων, grýphōn, or γρύπων, grýpōn, early form γρύψ, grýps; {gryphus) is a legendary creature with the body of a lion and the head and wings of an eagle. As the lion was traditionally considered the king of the beasts and the eagle was the king of the birds, the griffin was thought to be an especially powerful and majestic creature. The griffin was also thought of as king of the creatures. Griffins are known for guarding treasure and priceless possessions. Adrienne Mayor, a classical folklorist, proposes that the griffin was an ancient misconception derived from the fossilized remains of the Protoceratops found in gold mines in the Altai mountains of Scythia, in present day southeastern Kazakhstan, or in Mongolia. In antiquity it was a symbol of divine power and a guardian of the divine. Some have suggested that the word griffin is cognate with Cherub.


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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Griffin" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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