The Phoenix is a mythical scared firebird that is found in several different mythologies. This bird has a colourful plumage and a tail of gold. However, it's sometimes depicted with a blue, green or purple tail, according to different legends. The life span of the Phoenix is between 500 to 1000 years, before it is reduced to ashes and re-born again. The new, younger Phoenix will live as long as the old Phoenix. However, some believe the new Phoenix is just the offspring of the older Phoenix. It is said to have a song-like cry, which many people find beautiful.
Many cultures have their own interpretations of the Phoenix. Some cultures believe its not just red, but is multi-coloured. Despite this, it is always seen as bird by these cultures.
Russian Origin: : In Russia, the Phoenix is called the Firebird.
Egyptian Origin: The earliest interpretation of the Phoenix is found in Ancient Egypt, called the Bennu. The Bennu was pictured as grey, blue, purple or white, with a long beak and a two-feathered crest. Sometimes it was even depicted as an eagle with red and gold feathers. One version of the myth says the Bennu burst forth from the Heart of Osiris. In other versions, the Bennu created itself from a fire, which was burned on a Holy Tree, in a sacred precincts of the Temple of Ra.
Persian Origin: The Huma (also known as the Bird Of Paradise) is a Persian mythological bird. It consumes itself every few hundred years, and the arises from its ashes. The Huma is considered to be a compassionate bird, and its touch is said to bring great fortune.
Greek Origin: The Greeks adapted the word Bennu, and created the name Phoenix. Meaning the colour purple-red/crimson. The Greeks and Romans both pictured the bird as an eagle or a peacock. According to Greek Mythology it lived in Arabia, next to a well which it would bathe in at dawn.
- Sanskrit: The Phoenix, or Garuga, is the mythical fire bird which is considered as the chariot of the Hindu God Vishnu.
- Tibet: The Phoenix is also known as Garuga and it means 'The Bird Of Life'.
- China: Here, it is known as Feng-Huang, and it symbolises completeness, showing the joining of Ying and Yang. Unlike the other depictions of the Phoenix, in China Feng-Huang does not disintegrate. The bird is truly immortal, so it never needs to arise from its ashes.
- Phoenix's tend to hang round Volcanoes.
- The Phoenix is a close relative of the Firebird.