The Cryptid Zoo: Sirrush

The sirrush is a Babylonian dragon. It is known from legends and from ancient statues. One reason why some cryptozoologists think the sirrush could be a real animal is because of certain details of the statues.
This sirrush is from the Ishtar Gate of the ancient city of Babylon. Photographer and artist unknown.
In Babylonia, carvings of real animals such as lions stayed the same over many generations of artists, but carvings of mythical animals tended to change quite a lot, because each new generation of artists would re-interpret the myths artistically.

The sirrush, which ought to be a mythical animal, stays the same over a long time period. This makes some people think that it must have been a real animal that lived in the swamps of the Middle East, or perhaps it was an exotic animal that was imported from Africa on a regular enough basis that artists could see it personally. Furthermore, there are tales of at least one such creature being kept in a temple in Babylonia as an object of worship.

Some cryptozoologists think that the sirrush is identical to the mokele-mbembe, while others dispute that idea because the mokele-mbembe has rounded contours and puffy dimensions, like any sauropod dinosaur, while artistic depictions of the sirrush show a long, lean creature, like a lizard stretched into the shape of a starving cow. Thus, other researchers working in the field of cryptozoology propose that a different kind of living dinosaur or even a giant lizard would be a more likely candidate.

You can find out more about the Sirrush from the following sources:

Burns, Philip R. Mushrushu: Another Name for the Sirrush
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Clark, Jerome. Unexplained!. Detroit: Visible Ink Press, 1999. Pages 274-277

Harnock, Jim. Dragon of the Ishtar Gate

Meader, Glenn. The Ishtar Gate

Newton, Michael. Encyclopedia of Cryptozoology: A Global Guide to Hidden Animals and Their Pursuers. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, 2005. Page 427

Wikipedia, The. Sirrush

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The text on this page is copyright 2005 by Jamie Hall. Please use proper citation if you are using this website for research.