black dog’s and hell hounds
A black dog is the name given to a being found primarily in the folklores of the British Isles. The black dog is essentially a nocturnal apparition, often said to be associated with the Devil, and its appearance was regarded as a portent of death. It is generally supposed to be larger than a normal dog, and often has large, glowing eyes.
It is often associated with electrical storms (such as Black Shuck’s appearance at Bungay, Suffolk), and also with crossroads, places of execution and ancient pathways.
The origins of the black dog are difficult to discern. It is impossible to ascertain whether the creature originated in the Celtic or Germanic elements in British culture. Throughout European mythology, dogs have been associated with death. Examples of this are the Cŵn Annwn, Garmr and Cerberus, all of whom were in some way guardians of the underworld. This association seems to be due to the scavenging habits of dogs. It is possible that the black dog is a survival of these beliefs.
Black dogs are almost universally regarded as malevolent, and a few (such as the Barghest) are said to be directly harmful. Some, however, like the Gurt Dog in Somerset and the Black Dog of the Hanging Hills, are said to behave benevolently.
A hellhound is a dog of Hell, found in mythology, folklore and fiction. Hellhounds typically have features such as black fur color, glowing red or sometimes glowing yellow eyes, super strength or speed, ghostly or phantom characteristics, foul odor, and sometimes even the ability to talk. Some people say they have seen the dog with a by-stander they believe for this person to be a messenger of the devil. Hellhounds are often associated with fire, and may have fire-based abilities and appearances, hellhounds appear out of nowhere suddenly and have been known to vanish in a blink of an eye. They are often assigned to guard the entrances to the world of the dead, such as graveyards and Indian burial grounds, or undertake other duties related to the afterlife or the supernatural, such as hunting down lost souls or guarding a supernatural treasure. As legend goes, if one happened to see the hellhound three times directly in the eyes, he or she will die an abrupt and unseen death.