Ogres: Flesh-Eating Giants

Dear friends of Training Center Raya – London,

Every country has its own mythology, complete with heroes and monsters. Here on the Islands, we encounter many menacing creatures lurking in dark corners and beneath bridges. You may recall our previous tale about the mischievous bogart. Today, let’s delve into the world of ogres.

The term “ogre” originates from the French language, tracing back to the Etruscan god Orcus, who notoriously feasted on humans. But what exactly does an ogre look like? Imagine a creature of immense strength, boasting a huge, muscular body that dwarfs ordinary humans. These man-eating giants feature abundant hair and skin unlike our own—often described as an unusual shade of green or blue. However, their most defining trait lies in their malevolent and aggressive temperament, coupled with an insatiable appetite for human flesh. In folklore, ogres often targeted young children, perhaps serving as cautionary figures in bedtime stories.

Interestingly, similar beings exist across various cultures. Among the Scandinavians, trolls inhabit mountains and lurk under bridges. The Japanese have their menacing Oni, while North American Indigenous peoples share tales of a colossal, hairy creature—the very inspiration behind legends like Sasquatch or Bigfoot.

Before ogres became heroes in fairy tales, their menacing image first emerged in the poem “Parsifal, the Knight of the Holy Grail” by French poet and chivalric novelist Chrétien de Troyes. In this tale of King Arthur’s court, we find the following verse:

“And it is written that he will come again in the realm of Logres, which formerly was the land of the ogres, before he kills them with his lance.”

Ogres also feature prominently in many traditional children’s fairy tales. Often depicted as man-eating giants who feast on children and guard castles, ogres lack sharp minds and are easily overpowered by the main characters. You’ll encounter these formidable beings in stories like “Jack and the Beanstalk,” “Puss in Boots,” and “Little Thumb.”

In modern culture, ogres appear not only in computer games but also in successful animated films—such as the beloved DreamWorks series “Shrek.”

Friends, explore the English version of this text on our blog and expand your vocabulary! We wish you success in your English learning journey!


Author: Iveta Radeva

Training Centre Raya London is a new and fastly developing English Language School specialized in teaching English as a second language. Founded in 2015 we are small enough to provide a personal service, but large enough to have very good facilities and resources for the students to learn English in UK.