Release The Kraken: What is a Kraken? Kraken Origins, History
Thanks To Clash of the Titans, 2010 Has Turned Out To Be the Year of the Kraken. Everybody's Talking About Krakens, But What Is a Kraken Anyway?
It seems that everything is coming up Kraken. With the release of the Clash of the Titans remake, it seems that all you hear nowadays is Kraken this and Kraken that. The phrase "release the Kraken" is set to become a catchphrase that you'll be bugging your friends with for months.
With North American in the grips of Kraken-mania, the question for many remains: What the heck is a Kraken anyway?
What Is a Kraken?
The Kraken is a mythological giant sea creature with many arms and tentacles. Imagine a mile-long squid or an octopus and you get an idea of what a Kraken looks like.
Where Does the Kraken Come From?
The term Kraken appears to come from Norway. Ancient Norwegian tales of the Kraken date back to the 12th century. In the 1700s, the Bishop of Bergen wrote the Natural History of Norway, which described the Kraken as "a floating island." It's possible that the story of the Kraken may have been inspired by sailor's encounters with giants squids out in the open sea.
The Kraken In Literature
The Kraken has popped up in literature for centuries. There are references to the Kraken in Herman Melville's classic Moby Dick.
Most famously, Alfred Lord Tennyson wrote a poem about the Kraken:
Below the thunders of the upper deep,
Far far beneath in the abysmal sea,
His ancient, dreamless, uninvaded sleep
The Kraken sleepeth: faintest sunlights flee
About his shadowy sides: above him swell
Huge sponges of millennial growth and height;
And far away into the sickly light,
From many a wondrous grot and secret cell
Unnumbered and enormous polypi
Winnow with giant fins the slumbering green.
There hath he lain for ages and will lie
Battering upon huge seaworms in his sleep,
Until the latter fire shall heat the deep;
Then once by men and angels to be seen,
In roaring he shall rise and on the surface die.
Kraken in Movies
The Kraken has found a place in modern pop culture, thanks largely to the original Clash of the Titans. It should be noted that the Kraken in the original 1981 version of Clash of the Titans was not a typical version of the Kraken. Instead of a multi-tentacled sea creature, the Kraken was depicted as a monster with arms and legs.
A kraken also appears in the popular Disney film Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest,