Dragon is the common name that refers to a variety of gigantic reptiles reported by people of ancient times. Dragons were also a common theme in mythology. The word comes from the Greek: δράκων, drakōn; Latin: draco; meaning a ” serpent of huge size”.
Although dragon legends are often dismissed as myth today, many of these stories may have a historical basis in sightings of recent dinosaurs. Countries, such as England, China, Scandinavia, France, India, Egypt, and Arabia each recount numerous dragons of a variety of types. Ancient depictions of dragons have been found that span more than a millennia, which often bear remarkable similarity to known dinosaur species.
There are, in fact, nearly 200 such places in Britain where dragon sightings have been reported throughout history. In his book After the Flood, Bill Cooper lists eighty-one locations in the British Isles alone. Multiple terrestrial, flying, and sea dragons were described by these cultures and known by various names. Many of these creatures were predatory to livestock or threatening to other industries and therefore often target by hunters and killed.
The World Book Encyclopedia states the following about dragons:
The dragons of legend are strangely like actual creatures that have lived in the past. They are much like the great reptiles which inhabited the earth long before man is supposed to have appeared on earth. Dragons were generally evil and destructive. Every country had them in its mythology.