Chinese hieroglyphics of dragons were found on turtle shells and bones. They depicted a horned reptile with teeth, and sometimes paws. There was also at times a sign above saying the dragon brought bad luck. Scientists think what people believed were dragons were likely alligators, lizards, or snakes.
However, since alligators build underground tunnels, and Chinese dragons were thought to guard valuables under water, most people believe they are associated with alligators.
Again, Oriental dragons are associated with water; they live under water and some are born as fish. Oriental dragons spit water out of their mouths and are not evil, nor are they fire-breathing (those are the western dragons ). They only come out at night. Phoenix are the preferred mate of dragons , because in Chinese culture dragons represent Yin, the male side of the Yin-yang, and Phoenix represent Yang, the female side. Oriental dragons represent strength, bravery, purity, wisdom and excellence.
Some dragons also represent sin in the Christian religion, and in old legends, destruction. But Chinese dragons are only sources of goodness.
There are nine major types of oriental dragons , or lungs. They are:
Dilong. Earth Dragon. They fly only to mate and are the female counterpart of Shenlong.
Horned. These are the most powerful of the Chinese Dragons ; they can make rain and are deaf. There is also the homeless dragon, Li, who lives in the ocean, and the scaly Chiao of marshes and mountains.
Winged. Yinglong. The oldest of all dragons . All dragons grow wings when they age.
Tianlong. Celestial “Heavenly” dragons . These are the dragons that represent the Chinese culture; they guard the gods and the emperors and pull their chariots.
Shenlong. Spiritual. This type of dragon guards sacred places from evil demons; he controls wind and rain for mankinds’ benefit.
Dragon of Hidden Treasures. Fucanglong. Dragons like this guard hidden and sacred treasures, such as the Pearl of Wisdom. They cause volcanos when bursting out of the earth to communicate to Heaven.
Coiling. Panlong. Inhabits Oriental lakes.
Yellow. Huanglong. Many myths and legends were made about the Yellow Dragon, one that the dragon emerged from water and showed Emperor Fu Shi the basics of writing.
Dragon King. There are four dragon kings. One for each of the 4 seas; the North, South, East, and the West. They appear as dragons but can transform into human shapes. They live in crystal palaces.
There are also nine attributes Oriental Dragons share:
The eyes of a demon, the head of a camel, the ears of a cow, the neck of a snake, the horns of an antelope, the feet of a tiger, the stomach of a shellfish, the scales of a fish, and the claws of an eagle.