patianak Picture

another creature of philippine mythology, the patianak, or tianak, comes from a very old (pre-spanish colonization) practice of leaving children who were born deformed to die in the woods. some would hear their unearhtly wails carried by the wind. they would, in their mangled forms assume unnatural strenght and ferocity. there was also another related belief of some earth-bound spirits, who looked like children, similar perhaps to the irish leprechauns, which, when captured, can give the captor either a cooking pot that produces an endless supply of rice, or a pouch that never runs of of jewels.

the patianak is just one of the many creatures in the supernatural menagerie found in philippine mythology. most of these were said to reside in trees, and some old people claim that those trees inhabited by fireflies, or those whose fruits never achieve ripeness but instead rot, or rotting tree stumps are the homes of these beings.

here i depicted the patianak with a decorative tree stump in the background.
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