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I am inclined to think is the tiger. But that it has three rows of teeth along each jaw and spikes at the tip of its tail with which it defends itself at close quarters, while it hurls them like an archer's arrows at more distant enemies; all this is, I think, a false story that the Indians pass on from one to another owing to their excessive dread of the beast.
— Pausanias, Description of Greece

The Manticore (Early Middle Persian Martyaxwar) is a Persian legendary creature similar to the Egyptian sphinx. It has the body of a red lion, a human head with three rows of sharp teeth (like a shark), and a trumpet-like voice. Other aspects of the creature vary from story to story. It may be horned, winged, or both. The tail is that of either a dragon or a scorpion, and it may shoot poisonous spines to either paralyze or kill its victims. It devours its prey whole and leaves no clothes, bones, or possessions of the prey behind.

The manticore myth was of Persian origin, where its name was "man-eater" (from early Middle Persian مارتیا martya "man" (as in human) and خوار xwar- "to eat"). The English term "manticore" was borrowed from Latin mantichora, itself derived from the Greek rendering of the Persian name, μαρτιχώρα, martichora. It passed into European folklore first through a remark by Ctesias, a Greek physician at the Persian court of King Artaxerxes II in the fourth century BC, in his notes on India ("Indika"), which circulated among Greek writers on natural history but have not survived. The Romanised Greek Pausanias, in his Description of Greece, recalled strange animals he had seen at Rome.

Battle vs. Dingonek (by Goddess of Despair and Thundrtri)[]

Water crashes down from above as the dingonek passes by a waterfall. The creature looks down below the waterfall to watch as several humans begin to set up camp. They began to set up camp as one man fills a water bottle with river. He holds the bottle down to the water and looks around him. He’s marveled at the beauty of nature until his eyes gaze upon nature’s ugly side, the dingonek. The beast walked away from the sight and began to take a rout down below to the humans.

“Did any of you see that?” asks the explorer to his colleges. The other men each respond the same. “What are you talking about?” asks the leader of the expedition.

“There was this thing watching us on top of the waterfall, it had a horn, a weird tail, and-”

“That’s enough Jonathon.”

“But…”

“You saw nothing. Now please help us set up camp.”

Jonathon looks up at the waterfall one more time and sighs. “Fine, but I swear I saw something!” The rest of the group seemed to ignore him as he went on to describe this creature. Eventually another member of the group taps him on the shoulder. “Jonathon” he began “Go write about your unicorn in that diary of yours.” Jonathon looks angrily at him.

“It’s a journal not a diary you moron!”

“Whatever you call it doesn’t matter; no one cares about your fictional nonsense.”

“It’s not fake I saw the-”

Jonathon froze with terror. The group member turns his head and looks into the dingonek eyes. The beast scanned the man and watched him pull an item from his side. The man pointed his firearm at the creature, despite Jonathon’s protests. He fired one round, but it bounced off the monster’s scales. The creature lost its amusement in the man and tackled him, impaling him onto its horn. Jonathon turned and ran in terror as the other members of the group look on in horror at the beast.

The dingonek wasted no time and removed the corpse off of his horn and charged at the other group members. Jonathon grabbed his camera and snapped several photos before fleeing the carnage. The camp members were cut to shreds by the cryptid, but Jonathon wouldn’t survive the day himself.

As he ran through the forest, the roars of the nightmare followed his ears when a sudden branch caught his leg. He fell to the ground and examined it. Upon turning over he witnessed another terrifying sight. The Manticore came flying from a tree and landed next to him. He widened his eyes and lifted his camera. Before the photo was taken however, a claw met his throat.

The Manticore widened its jaws and took a large bite out of the man’s head, enjoying the taste of the flesh. A loud roar came from the distance as the dingonek followed the scent of blood. The Manticore forced itself to resist the buffet that was the man and look up. The dingonek looked the Manticore in the eyes and licked its teeth. The dingonek and the Manticore looked at each other and shared one thought “More food.”

The Manticore charges at the Dingonek but just before they make contact the beast leaps above the Dingonek. The Manticore blasts several spikes at the Dingonek but once more the scales defend the creature. The Dingonek turns and watches its prey fly towards it, claws ready. The Dingonek leapt at the beast with its horn but the Manticore dodged and clawed its head, drawing blood. The Dingonek began to get angry and as the Manticore flew around for another attack the Dingonek leapt into the air and clawed one of the monster’s wings.

The Manticore immediately fell from the air as the Dingonek landed next to it. The Manticore managed to stand as the Dingonek rushed forward. The Manticore fired a spike at the Dingonek which made a small cut on the Dingonek’s cheek, but didn’t stop the cryptid’s charge. The Manticore turned and tried to take flight once more but before it could try the Dingonek was in range and plunged its horn into the uninjured wing of the Manticore, making the beast roar in pain

The Manticore cocks his legs back and lunges from the cliff, his wings immediately catching him in midair. He flaps his great black wings and soars downward towards the Dingonek who is set for a charge. The Manticore fires three spikes from it's tail at the Dingonek just before he lands. The spikes glance harmlessly off of the Dingonek's hardened scales. Both creatures growl and begin to circle one-another. The campers by now have scattered, leaving their camp in half-set-up. The Dingonek's eyes flash with great as he circles. With a great leap of power, the DIngonek instantly hurls himself at the Manticore. He knocks the Manticore onto his back and stands over him. He draws back one of his paws, claws ready for the kill, when suddenly, the Manticore swipes the Dingonek off his chest using his tail. The Dingonek tumbles over and quickly gets back to his feet. Rolling over, the Manticore stands and readies himself for a quick attack. He swats at the Dingonek's face with his claws, but only to deliver a minor blow that only stuns the Dingonek for a second. The Dingonek charges once again, this time, horn first.

The Manticore, now viciously angered, swats at his foe's face with his claws. The sharp talons cut into the Dingonek's head, leaving 4 crimson streaks across the Dingonek's face. The Dingonek thrashes his head and backs away from his vicious attacker. The two beasts circle once more. Each adorned with bloody scars and bruises. The Dingonek is the first to strike this time. He lunges forward but the Manticore backs away and retaliates by jumping on top of the Dingonek. The Dingonek rolls over sending the Manticore tumbling onto his back. The Manticore swings his spiked tail, around in a desperate defence to protect himeslef as he tries to ge to a less vulnerable postition. The tail smacks the Dingonek on the side of the leg. The mighty horned beast's leg buckles and he crumples to the ground. The Manticore struggles to stand. But as he does so, the Dingonek launches one last desperate attempt to kill the Manticore. He launches himself forward, horn aimed outward, and stabs the Manticore through the neck. The great winged creature roars as a fountain of blood rockets from his neck. Globs of blood and fur shower the Dingonek as he rips his horn from the dying Manticore. Collapsing to the ground, the Manticore draws its last breath, surrounded by a pool of its own blood.

Expert's Opinion[]

The Dingonek was able to gain the victory in this battle barely. The Manticore had the advantage of projectiles but the Dingonek's scales were able to block any damage they could have dealt. The Dingonek was stronger, more durable, and more brutal, allowing it to defeat the unarmored Manticore.

To see the original battle, weapons, and votes, click here.

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