A face only a mother monster could love, perhaps THE phrase that describes Echidna, AKA, she-viper, AKA the mother of all monsters – who is also half-serpent / half-human. Because this Greek goddess has a knack for birthing offspring way off the ugly chart. And we’re not talking physical appearance - these babies were nasty in the evil-at-heart, gonna-hunt-you-down-and-eatcha-cause-mumsie-don’t-like-ya sort of way.
Hesoid, one of those Greek poet types, had this to say about Echidna in his work, Theogony, a detailed explanation of monster origins:
“The goddess fierce Echidna who is half a nymph with glancing eyes and fair cheeks, and half again a huge snake, great and awful, with speckled skin, eating raw flesh beneath the secret parts of the holy earth. And there she has a cave deep down under a hollow rock far from the deathless gods and mortal men.”
Despite sounding like a bit of a hermit, Echidna and her babies managed to cause quite a bit of chaos for the heroes of Greek myths. Without her many-headed dogs, sea-serpants, dragons, gorgans, sphinxes (sphinxi?), and harpies these legends wouldn’t be so…well, legendary.
Survival Tip: Echidna is known for appearing outside her cave, letting her attractive, human half lure in victims which she will then drag down into the depths of her realm and consume. So, yeah, when cave hiking - BEWARE.