Beware of the … bleagle

Marie McC posted a closeup of this strange creature last week on Alexandria Daily Photo. Since we both shot pictures of him at the same time, I’m sure she won’t mind if I post one too. Here he is on a column, guarding his owners’ house.

He’s a chimera—a mythical beast made up of parts of several animals. This one seems to have bat’s wings, a lion’s head and body, and eagle‘s talons. I guess that makes him a bleagle. I’m glad he’s on a sturdy leash.

The original Chimaera was a fire-breathing monster, part lion, part goat, and part serpent. Bellerophon killed it, mounted on the winged horse Pegasus, which he tamed for the purpose. There’s a famous statue: The Chimaera of Arezzo. Photographs of a replica of the statue can be found here.

4 Responses to Beware of the … bleagle

  1. Anne says:

    He looks very fierce…a bit creepy seeing him during the night

  2. mariemcc says:


  3. Kirk says:

    This is particularly interesting now, given the human genome project. After DNA testing, a number of mothers have been told their children were not their own–and had them taken away–because their DNA didn’t match their child’s. These mothers were chimeras. They had two unique strands of DNA instead of one. Sometimes two eggs can merge in the womb and be fertilized, which means that instead of fraternal twins there’s a ghost twin inside the one who’s born.

    The condition is called chimerism, and it may force some of us who confuse “science” with “religion” to go deeper yet again in our search for solid ground upon which to identify our individual reality. My advice: Your identity is fundamentally a spiritual matter, which means it is grounded in value/values, not in data/facts.

  4. passante says:


    What you have added is both interesting and very distressing. I was aware of the use of the term chimera in medicine but didn’t know what it meant. As always, you have taught me something and given me something to think about!

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