D&D Basic Monsters: Harpy

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The harpy has, like many other creatures for D&D, its roots in Greek mythology,  and like so many beast from Greek mythology, they are a type of hybrid monster combining the traits of human and beast - in this case a female human head (arms, breasts and/or torso are optional depending on different sources) and the body of a bird (usually a vulture).

Though some rare sources describe them as having the faces of fair maidens, they're mostly reviled for their ugliness and foulness. Originally thought of as wind spirits, their name apparently means "snatchers" or "wind bearers".

The D&D version, with a full female upper body. has been with the game since the start. For some reason, the harpies of D&D have been gifte with the "Luring Song" ability - a trait never really associated with the mythological harpy. It seems there might have been a mix up at the point of conception, with the Sirens, also sometimes depicted as women-bird hybrids.


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