Dragons: A Very Short HistoryWritten by Rosana Hart
Have you seen a living, breathing dragon in person lately? Me neither. But that doesn't mean they don't exist.
The history of dragons goes back at least six thousand years, and there are dragon tales and legends from every continent except Antarctica. In some places, dragons have been considered helpful to people -- they were national symbol of China -- but in European history, they have generally been considered to be evil, often hoarding treasure or about to devour a fair maiden. Men who succeeded in slaying one have generally been acclaimed as heroes and saints. Some famous dragon-slayers include Siegfried, Sigmund, Beowulf, Arthur, Tristram, Lancelot, Saint Michael, and Saint George.
While most people today don't worry much about dragons, until about a hundred years ago, everyone took them seriously. Sightings were reported worldwide. One dragon in France was said to kill over 3,000 people before twelfth century.
What is anime?Written by Rosana Hart
Anime is a word that needs no definition to millions of young people around world -- but here's a description anyway, since you may be one of millions who isn't familiar with term. Anime is Japanese animation, and is hugely popular in Japan, a part of everyday life. The word is used to include quite a variety of animated TV series and films.
Often anime characters are drawn with large eyes and smallish noses. The animation uses sharp lines and may use less detail than Hollywood-style animation. Video games and mangas (Japanese comic books) are drawn in this style as well. Plots are often more complex and mature than Western-style cartoons or comic books, including violence and characters dying. Fantasy adventures and romance are part of mix as well. There are so many different types of anime that there is something for everyone.
Youth culture cuts across national boundaries more and more nowadays, and anime products are a good example. From Japan to United States, from China to Sweden, their popularity only increases. There are many fan events going on worldwide. In U.S. in 2004, over one hundred thousand people attended Katsucon, Otakon, Anime Expo and similar events -- many of them in full costume. Now, anime is being created in places other than Japan.