Archive for the ‘ Fiction ’ Category

The Real Roots of 7 Magical Beasts from Harry Potter

The magical beasties that inhabit Harry Potter’s world didn’t spring entirely from J. K. Rowling’s imagination. Many of them are rooted in centuries-old myths, folklore and even a few real-life freaks. Life’s Little Mysteries rounds up the Top 7 mythological beasts from the Harry Potter universe.

7. Sphinx – Featuring the body of a lion and the head of a human, the sphinx was used by ancient Egyptians to represent some of their gods. The animal was a symbol of strength, power and nobility, and so many pharaohs and queens had their likeness carved into the statue’s head and had it placed over their tombs and burial temples in order to suggest their relation to the powerful warrior goddess Sekhmet, who is depicted with a lioness head and a female body. Egyptians also believed that sphinxes guarded treasure, and that’s just what they do in the Harry Potter universe, standing watch over Gringotts Wizarding Bank.

6. Werewolves – Werewolves run amok in the Harry Potter books, and although the series depicts good and evil werewolves, most that turn up in folktales around the world are primarily evil. One of the first mentions comes from Greek mythology, when King Lycaeon served a platter of raw human meat to the king of the gods, Zeus. Infuriated, Zeus turned Lycaeon into a wolf. During the Middle Ages, tales of werewolves spread rapidly throughout Europe as packs of wild wolves threatened peasants and their livestock. And during the 1500s in Bedburg, Germany, bodies and limbs would turn up in fields, terrifying villagers. This carried on for 25 years until the “werewolf” was caught in 1589. He was Peter Stubbe, who claimed he would become a wolf when he wore a wolf hide. He was dismembered, beheaded, and burned on a pyre Oct. 31, 1590.

5. Griffins – Griffin mythology also originated in Greece. The fearsome creature had the front legs, wings and head of a giant eagle and the body and hind legs of a lion, and served as Zeus’ watchdog. The Greeks believed that griffins originated in Asia and India, where they found gold in the high mountaintops and built nests atop the treasure. In medieval times, images of griffins decorated valuable objects that needed to be guarded, such as jewelry boxes and caskets; the creatures play a similar role in Harry Potter’s world.

4. Unicorns – In Harry Potter’s world, the unicorn is a magical horse whose single horn is used in potions and whose blood can revive someone who is “an inch from death.” Ancient Greek and Roman scholars also believed that crushed unicorn horn could cure many illnesses – although the unicorns they imagined were not just stark white, but also red and black. The myth of the unicorn resurfaced in European medieval tales, which stated that drinking from the horn would protect from poison. There’s no sign of unicorns in the fossil record, however, and the horns of allegedly caught unicorns actually belong to narwhals, which are Arctic whales that have a unicorn-horn-like tusk, or tooth, protruding from their heads. Narwals (Monodon monoceros) are currently endangered because poachers hunt them for their popular “unicorn horns.”

3. Chimera – Another creature from Greek mythology, the chimera was described in “The Iliad” as “a thing of immortal make, not human, lion-fronted and snake behind, a goat in the middle, and snorting out the breath of the terrible flame of bright fire.” Greeks believed this nasty beast spawned from an active, destructive volcano in Lycia, Asia Minor. The chimera is depicted as a monster who terrorized the Lycian countryside until she was killed by iron arrows shot by Greek hero Bellerophon. Harry Potter’s beast-wrangling friend Hagrid laments how difficult it would be to capture and raise one of the beasts. In the real world, “chimera” is a term commonly used in associated with medical experiments using human-animal cells and DNA.

2. Centaurs – Living in the Forbidden Forest near Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, centaurs have the four-legged body of a horse but the upper body and head of a human. Centaurs are prominent in Grecian art and have also been depicted on ancient sculptured stones found in Scotland. There is a theory that the centaur stems from confused onlookers seeing men riding horses for the first time. For example, because horses were not native to the Near East and remained rare there until after about 1800 B.C., when the Kassite nomads rode by, Near Eastern societies that had never seen such a sight may have thought that they had witnessed a man/horse hybrid.

1. Phoenix – As Albus Dumbledore’s magical familiar and defender, Fawkes the phoenix looks very similar to earlier portrayals of the everlasting bird. Legend says that the scarlet-, amber- and gold-feathered phoenix can live for 1,000 years, at which point it bursts into flame and is reborn from the ashes. The phoenix represents the immortality of the soul and is present in Roman, Greek, Egyptian, Chinese, Christian and Native American mythology. The real-life phoenix is, however, significantly less torrid – it’s a jellyfish. The hydrozoan jellyfish (Turritopsi nutricula) has cells that cycle endlessly from a mature adult stage back to an immature polyp stage — in effect regenerating its entire body over and over again.

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Allied Shinobi Forces


The Allied Shinobi Forces (忍連合軍, Shinobi Rengōgun) is a coalition between the collective military might of the hidden villages of the shinobi nations of the Lands of Lightning, Water, Earth, Wind, and Fire, and the lone samurai nation of the Land of Iron. The purpose of this alliance is to stand up together against the threat of the Akatsuki organization and the tailed beasts, in the Fourth Great Shinobi World War. Because of the deceitful actions of the candidate Sixth Hokage Danzō Shimura, the other Kage asked Kakashi Hatake about the Land of Fire’s Hidden Village of Konohagakure’s entrance into the alliance. However, before Kakashi was made Hokage, Tsunade woke up from her coma, and resumed her post as Hokage. After the summit, the five daimyo agreed to give power to their Hidden Villages, making the Shinobi Allied Forces official.

The coalition was formed after Madara Uchiha’s declaration of war after the five Kage’s and the head of the Land of Iron, Mifune, unanimously refused to hand over Killer Bee and Naruto Uzumaki, the jinchūriki of the Eight-Tailed Giant Ox and the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox respectively. When Madara departed, the Kage and Mifune discuss their plans on dealing with Madara and the tailed beasts and later Mifune suggested that the Fourth Raikage be the Supreme Leader (大権, Taiken) of the alliance to which the other Kage agreed.

 

 

Leaders

  • A (Supreme Leader)
  • Gaara (Commander General of the Army)

Affiliations

 

Purpose : The purpose of the coalition is primarily to defend the Eight Tails and Nine Tails jinchūriki from Akatsuki. The two jinchūriki, once caught, will complete Madara’s Eye of the Moon Plan. Therefore, the coalition planned to first find the two jinchūriki before Akatsuki and keep them safe, away from the battlefield if necessary. Beyond that, their duty is to put a united front against Akatsuki’s seven tailed beasts.

Composition
The Allied Shinobi Forces total army has around 80,000 people, among them shinobi and samurai alike. The armies base of operations is located in Kumogakure. In order to prepare for battle, ninja have been divided up into nine divisions pooling together ninja with similar abilities. Each is divided into teams that are lead by a commander. These groups are jointly headed by a General with Gaara, the Kazekage, acting as the Commander General of the entire army.

First Division
Mid-Range Fighter Division

General: Darui

Second Division
Close-Range Fighter Division

General: Kitsuchi

Third Division
Close/Mid-Range Fighter Division

General Kakashi Hatake

Fourth Division
Long-Range Fighter Division

Commander: Gaara


General’s Proxy: Shikamaru Nara

Fifth Division
Special Ops Division

General: Mifune

Ambush Company

Commander: Kankurō

Medical Logistics Company

Commander: Shizune

Intelligence Company

Commander: Inoichi Yamanaka

Sensor Company

Commander: Ao

Naruto 515 (The War Begins)


Naruto 515 so far one of my favorite release from naruto. The War begins.

Allied Shinobi Forces Versus Madara and Kabuto.

Joint Shinobi Headband

Allied Shinobi Forces
The Allied Shinobi Forces (忍連合軍, Shinobi Rengōgun) is a coalition between the collective military might of the hidden villages of the shinobi nations of the Lands of Lightning, Water, Earth, Wind, and Fire, and the lone samurai nation of the Land of Iron. The purpose of this alliance is to stand up together against the threat of the Akatsuki organization and the tailed beasts, in the Fourth Great Shinobi World War. Because of the deceitful actions of the candidate Sixth Hokage Danzō Shimura, the other Kage asked Kakashi Hatake about the Land of Fire’s Hidden Village of Konohagakure’s entrance into the alliance. However, before Kakashi was made Hokage, Tsunade woke up from her coma, and resumed her post as Hokage. After the summit, the five daimyo agreed to give power to their Hidden Villages, making the Shinobi Allied Forces official.

Purpose : The purpose of the coalition is primarily to defend the Eight Tails and Nine Tails jinchūriki from Akatsuki. The two jinchūriki, once caught, will complete Madara’s Eye of the Moon Plan. Therefore, the coalition planned to first find the two jinchūriki before Akatsuki and keep them safe, away from the battlefield if necessary. Beyond that, their duty is to put a united front against Akatsuki’s seven tailed beasts.

Composition

The Allied Shinobi Forces total army has around 80,000 people, among them shinobi and samurai alike.[2] The armies base of operations is located in Kumogakure.[3] In order to prepare for battle, ninja have been divided up into nine divisions pooling together ninja with similar abilities. Each is divided into teams that are lead by a commander. These groups are jointly headed by a General with Gaara, the Kazekage, acting as the Commander General of the entire army.

First Division
Mid-Range Fighter Division

General: Darui

Second Division
Close-Range Fighter Division

General: Kitsuchi

Third Division
Close/Mid-Range Fighter Division

General Kakashi Hatake

Fourth Division
Long-Range Fighter Division

Commander: Gaara

General’s Proxy: Shikamaru Nara

Fifth Division
Special Ops Division

General: Mifune

Ambush Company

Commander: Kankurō

Medical Logistics Company

Commander: Shizune

Intelligence Company

Commander: Inoichi Yamanaka

Sensor Company

Commander: Ao

South Harmon Institute of Technology

History

S.H.I.T. was founded by its current president Bartleby “B” Gaines and his high school friends, Hands Holloway and Sherman Schrader. Other founding members include Rory Thayer and Glen. With the exception of Schrader, these 2006 high school graduates were rejected from every college to which they applied. Gaines was inspired by his Harmon College rejection letter to create his own school. He and the other founders renovated an abandoned mental institution nearby Harmon College. Schrader was even tasked with creating a “legitimate”-looking website for the school. The founders had not expected that their “thrown together” school would be noticed; however, the motto listed on the site (“Acceptance is just one click away”) had been taken seriously by over 300 students, whom also had been rejected from ever single school that they applied for. The students, thinking that they could make a better start for themselves, and to make their parents proud of them, applied and were accepted by Schrader’s functional website. Therefore, the school officially opened in the fall of 2006 with approximately 300 undergraduate students. Unfortunately, the founders did not go through the proper channels to achieve accreditation and legitimacy, which created problems during its first semester of existence.

S.H.I.T.’s illegitimacy was made public by Dean Richard Van Horne of Harmon College. Dean Van Horne became aware of S.H.I.T.’s existence while he was securing properties surrounding Harmon College for demolition to make room for an addition to the Harmon campus: a large landscaped gateway designed to, in his words, “Keep knowledge in and ignorance out.” On October 27, 2006, Bartleby Gaines, Ben Lewis (S.H.I.T. Dean), and the student body pled their case before the Ohio State Board of Education for accreditation of S.H.I.T. Gaines showed the board that S.H.I.T. allows students to be what they want, whether that be a poet or an artist or anything else they can think of. His speech, causing those in attendance to rise to their feet in applause and cheers, also moved the board, which granted S.H.I.T. a one-year probationary period of accreditation.

Areas of Study

S.H.I.T. offers fully personalized study programs to its students by asking them “What do you want to learn?” Based on the students’ inner reflection, they develop their own classes and study plans and write them on a LARGE white board.

Culinary Arts

Glen came to S.H.I.T. after receiving a score of 0 on the SAT and being fired from his job at the “Qwick and Stop” for trying to create a shrimp slushie (he was both hungry and thirsty). At S.H.I.T., he explored new and innovative combinations of flavors of food, (his first creation was GlenWads, said to “contain every delicious flavor in every single bite.”) and eventually incorporated classic techniques into his repertoire.

Visual Arts

During summer camp when he was young, Hans Holloway carved an award-winning wood sculpture but was soon discovered for his athletic talent and was never able to pursue sculpting and woodcarving. He chose this as his area of study at S.H.I.T.; and a division of the school, the “Hands Holloway School of Art” is named after him.

Music

A former member of the United States military who attended S.H.I.T. brought his love of rock-and-roll and classic rock music to the school and teaches numerous classes on “the music and lyrical angst of a lost generation, and we rock our faces off.”

Nothing

This area of study is headed by Rory Thayer, who noted that since first grade, her entire life has been scheduled. At S.H.I.T., she studies meditation techniques and other methods of relaxation. Abernathy Darwin Dunlap (A.D.D.) also followed this course of study. attention deficit disorder, with her new found friend “A.D.D”,caused him to be unable to sit still or pay attention to anything for more than a few seconds. When he arrived at S.H.I.T., he expressed a desire to “slow things down.” When he had started meditating with Rory, the only thing that could keep him from running again was a straightjacket that they found somewhere in the old mental hospital. He joined Rory in her meditation sessions and was eventually able to discipline his mind and body to relax without the use of physical restraints.

Engineering and Physics

S.H.I.T. has a skateboarding half-pipe, built by two of its students, Dwayne and Wayne. Presumably, they have also pursued other engineering projects around the campus. When the meeting for accredidation had come around, they both had helped B. by telling them that

Entropy Projection

One of the more eccentric students arrives at S.H.I.T. with the desire to “learn to blow shit up with mind.” On screen, the audience sees him concentrating on a pineapple, and a football and causing it to shake on a table. During the final scene, Dean Van Horne’s car explodes as he is walking towards it. The camera cuts to the eccentric character who turns to Bartleby and says “I told ya.” We can infer that this ability (if the student actually did learn it) was a manifestation of the as of yet unproven supernatural ability of entropy projection, or the ability to cause potential energy to convert to kinetic energy in an inanimate object and subsequently cause the object to explode. This ability is also exhibited by the X-Men comic book character Gambit.

Fashion Design

A former exotic dancer, Kiki arrives and states that she wants to learn “something having to do with clothes…putting them on, taking them off. Im really good at that part, y’wanna see?” She is assigned by President Gaines to design the S.H.I.T. line of college attire.

Rise and Fall of Chevy Chase

This is what B. and his apparent “friend” talk about on the way to see him dorm room. Apparently a very popular class, because President “B” says that there is a waiting list for this course.

Tuition

Tuition at S.H.I.T. is $10,000 per semester, or $20,000 per year.

Facilities

Rory Thayer Meditation Garden

This area of the college is used for meditation for those involved in learning about nothing and cease their scheduled lives. Rory herself leads meditation sessions in this garden, as well as nature walks. Glen, head of the Culinary Arts department, provides snacks for nature walks.

Hands Holloway School of Art

Built after the school’s founding in 2006, the Hands Holloway School of Art can be presumed to house a very popular area of study (Visual Arts) because of its size as compared to other areas of the campus shown on screen. Outside the main entrance to the building is a large wooden African fertility sculpture, modeled after the first item carved by Hands during his studies at S.H.I.T and was also made by Columbus Shorts Character S.H.I.T Heads forever.

Accepted Movie Poster