Ancient Greeks believed that the twin sons born of Oceanus and Theia were vampiric creatures. Collectively referred to as the Cercopes, meaning the “tailed ones,” they were renowned as being liars and thieves. The names of the brothers vary depending on the source—some say that their names were Acmon and Passalus, another claims that their names were Eurybatus and Olus, and a third claims the names were Sillus and Triballus. However, all the sources do agree in that the cercopes’ physical appearance is that of short and squat monkeylike beings that lives in the forest. Very fast and particularly dangerous if trapped, the cercopes will use their amazing stealth to creep into the room of a sleeping child, where they will drink blood from the child’s arms and legs.
- Barber, Dictionary of Fabulous Beasts, 37;
- Hesiod, Hesiod, the Homeric Hymns, and Homerica, 15354, 539;
- Lurker, Dictionary of Gods and Goddesses,348;
- Mahaffy, History of Classical Greek Literature, 114, 116;
- Rose, Giants, Monsters, and Dragons, 73