In addition to Talking Beasts, Narnia was home to many other beings from Western mythology, as well as a few Lewis created himself. Some were referenced often, like centaurs and dwarves. Others received just one mention, like the laundry list of baddies under the White Witch’s command who bind Aslan to the Stone Table. I’ve attempted here to separate them all out.
From Grecian and Roman myth:
“Man-headed bull” (Minotaur?)
Naiads and River-gods
Winged Horse (Pegasus)
From European Myth and Folklore:
From Arabic Myth and Folklore:
Lewis’s Own Creations:
Black Dwarves and Red Dwarves (Lewis separated them into races)
Living Stars (Ramandu and Coriakin)
White Birds of the Sun
Various media adaptations added many more creatures that were not included in the books, like cyclopses, minoboars, polar bears, gorillas, gryphons, tigers, and jaguars, presumably for visual effect. Pauline Baynes, the original illustrator, also took the liberty of adding creatures not mentioned in the books.
The size of Narnia-the-country, and the larger world that was built around it in the later books, was never explicitly stated, but to accommodate this mythological ecosystem logic dictates it would have been quite large. The problem is the distances given in canon seem quite small. For example, at the end of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe the Pevensies reach Lantern Waste within an afternoon’s ride from Cair Paravel. As Lantern Waste marks one of the borders of that land (most commonly the northwest on maps) it implies Narnia proper reaches no more than 10 – 15 miles inland from the coast, at least in that direction. This is very small. But that’s all for another post, since Worldbuilding Wednesday is all about the names.
In making up the list I was surprised to find that most of the named Narnian creatures are male. In the books, there are no mentions of female centaurs, dwarves, satyrs/fauns, earthmen, or marshwiggles, and of all the others, only a female monopod (Clipsie in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader) is mentioned by name, and rather offhandedly at that. Even Caspian’s eventual wife and Queen, Ramandu the Star’s Daughter, goes unnamed. (In the movie, though, she’s called Lilliandil.) Even the creatures that are traditionally female, like maenads, dryads, naiads, and mermaids, don’t get names. They’re referred to in clumps, as a group rather than individuals. Though the books have a balance of both male and female protagonists, with perhaps the meatier arcs going to females, the same was not true of the minor characters. Very odd.
Like the Talking Beasts, many creatures have names that refer to their characteristics or what they do. But an equal amount have a made-up name. Most of the time, given than many are of Greek origin, it’s something like Tumnus or Oreius, or rural Medieval English like Poggin or Puddleglum. I kept to those styles here.
Mythological Creatures of Narnia