African Mythological Creatures- Ninki Nanka: The Dragon

african, design, idea, illustration, Ken Wilson-Max, kids, publishing

creatures-ninkinamka

According to traditions, the Ninki Nanka lives in the swamps of West Africa. It is said to be extremely large and dangerous. It is said that when children get too confident and feel they can disobey their parents and go into the swamp they will be taken by the Ninki Nanka. The story of Ninki Nanka has spread from tribe to tribe across Africa. There is a song called “Ninki Nanka” on the album Casamance au clair de lune (1984) by the Senegalese music group Touré Kunda. A group of “dragon hunters” from the Centre for Fortean Zoology (CFZ) went to Gambia in the summer of 2006 to investigate the Ninki Nanka and take testimony from those who have claimed to have seen the mythical creature. One interviewee who claimed to have had an encounter with a Ninki Nanka said it looked similar to an image of a Chinese dragon. The expedition was known as the “J. T. Downes Memorial Gambia Expedition 2006”

Creatures from African Mythology: Jengu

african, design, From the sketchbooks, idea, illustration, Ken Wilson-Max, publishing

jengu

The Jengu, from Cameroon, differs in appearance from person to person, but it is said to be a beautiful, mermaid-like figures with long, hair and gap-toothed smiles. A Jengu (plural Miengu) is a water spirit in the traditional beliefs of the Sawa ethnic groups of Cameroon. They live in rivers and the sea and bring good fortune to worshipers. They are also healers and intermediaries between people and the spirits. A Jengu cult has long enjoyed popularity in Cameroon. For the inland Bakweri, Jengu worship is a rite of passage for eight to ten-year old girls. During this time, the girl must wear a dress made of fern fronds and follow a series of taboos. After this period, she is a full member of the cult. There are many mermaid creatures in mythology across the African continent.