This monster -- possibly the most confusing of all -- is a five-legged cow. As if that was not useless or strange enough, from each of its knee/elbow joints down are human forearms, ending with regular hands. Celphie was said to inhabit the deserts of Ethiopia, where normal people never went, allowing travelers to make up garbage like this.
Assyrian temples -- in regions which may equate to the medieval location "Ethiopia," as such regional titles typically translated into "not Europe" -- featured protective spirits known as Shedu carved on their entranceways. These monsters possessed the bearded face of a man but the body of a quadraped, included bovine. While hands are not heads, obviously, these sculptures appeared on the outward wall and the inward frame of the portals -- possessing both a front and a single side. When viewed head on, two legs would be visible, but from within the gateway, four legs would be seen on the carving -- only one of which was shared with the front view. As such, the depictions actually displayed five legs.
Whether or not these part-human, part-quintaped stoneworks had anything to do with the legend of the Celphie will forever remain a mystery, but it is certainly worth note.
Extra legs are a birth defect that can occur in the instance of a parasitic twin. An incomplete sibling may latch onto its wombmate and be birthed in any amount, from an entire extra body to only a single part or limb. Typically, animals born with this extra, fifth leg -- cattle included -- can make no use of the extra appendage. It often does not even touch the ground or function at any real level. It certainly does not end with a human hand, either.
What Is This Thing?
Celphie is a running joke in Battling Dragons. It is the most loved monster for being the worst monster ever. I originally stated that I never wanted the thing to be adoptable, and at most be featured in the RPG as "How could you not have fun killing this thing?"
Celphie transcended the suck, however, and is now a staple favorite of the Battling Dragons world. It exists almost entirely in a single account by Carol Rose, which has propegated through the internet as many of her entries from Giants, Monsters, and Dragons.
|Copyright © 1999-2020|