Myths, like legends… Folktales are a direct expression of a culture's values and behavioral expectations. There is a fine line that draws the difference between folk tales and myths. Here are 11 tales that will introduce you to this rich cultural tradition. There are over a hundred different world mythologies that we know of today. What are the similarities and differences between epic tales and myths? Myths give a religious explanation for something. Myths attempt to explain the beginning of the world, natural phenomena, the relationships between the gods and humans, and the origins of civilization. Comparative mythology is the comparison of myths from different cultures in an attempt to identify shared themes and characteristics. Folktales are retelling's stories, myths, and legends. Myths, derived from the Greek word ‘mythos’ meaning “thought, story, or speech”, are stories or tales that have been rooted in religion or folk beliefs of that time. First things first, we’ve got a bit of a hierarchical/taxonomic distinction to make here. Myths vs Folk Tales. Origin Myths & Archetypes Stories of how events, actions, or objects came to exist, featuring common archetypes found universally in myths from around the world. Johnny Appleseed, Bigfoot, and Paul Bunion are examples of still popular folktales. Comparative mythology has served a variety of academic purposes. Anyone with the knowledge of more than one of these world mythologies would realize that there are some glaring similarities between them. Māori myths and legends offer a fascinating take on New Zealand’s origins and the Earth’s creation. There are stories about gods (ngā atua), mythical creatures, nature, warfare and astronomy to name a few. Myths are a direct expression of a culture's religious beliefs. The difference between mythology and folklore can be quite subtle, and the terms are often used interchangeably by both laypeople and established scholars. “Folklore” is an umbrella term that encompasses many different forms such as narratives, customs, beliefs, material objects, etc. A legend is a heroic tale and is often told as a historical event. 14. Myth and Legend. On top of this, the confusion worsens as many similar genres come in-between them like legends … One common method that may be used to differentiate between the two terms, however, is for someone to consider the scope of a story and use this to distinguish between mythology and folklore. Similarly, folk tales and myths are two different types of stories that are often used interchangeably due to their similar nature. The summer before 5th grade, I happily enrolled in a Greek mythology summer school class. Myths and legends can seem very similar, however there are a few key differences. 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