Blog,  Europe,  Slovenia,  Travelogue

Enter the dragon

He is Ljubljana’s most famous mythical resident and is celebrated everywhere.
The dragon - Ljubljana’s most famous resident.

However, to understand his relevance to the city, we must go back to a legend we have all grown up with, involving a certain Jason and the Argonauts, and their quest to steal the Golden Fleece from the Aeetes, King of the Black Sea. He not only managed to steal the fleece by slaying a dragon protecting it, but also the heart of the king’s daughter, Medea, who very wisely decided to flee with him rather than face the wrath of her dad.

They say when a maiden walks on the bridge, his tail twitches.

Our brave Jason, together with his maiden and fleece in hand and trusty Argonauts sailed across the Black Sea, up the Danube River, until they were finally able to reach a lake near Ljubljana. With luck, another dragon was lurking in the waters. After a terrible battle that involved the dragon breathing fire on the village and several of the Argonauts jumping into the waters to save themselves, it was up to Jason, again, to do the honorable thing of dispatching this fiery dragon for the last time. After a heroic battle, he finally did manage to kill the dragon.

He is there on the city's coat of arms, flag, river walls, manhole covers, and even on the crescent of the local soccer team.

In appreciation, the villagers made him the first citizen of Ljubljana. However, the residents were not indifferent to the dragon and rather than ignore him, instead chose to have him as their symbol. He is there on the city’s coat of arms, flag, river walls, manhole covers, and even on the crescent of the local soccer team.

He is the official symbol of the city.

And while it is many centuries since the dragon was vanquished with no signs of reviving himself, they do say that when a lovely maiden walks over his bridge, there is a subtle twitch of his tail.

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