Skip to Content

Sarangay (Mythical Creature)

Sarangay is a mythical creature from Philippine folklore that has been passed down through generations. It is described as a half-man, half-bull creature with a jewel or gemstone attached to its ears. According to legend, the creatures guard their jewels and will kill anyone who attempts to steal them.

The story of Sarangay is believed to have originated in the 17th century when the Spanish first heard about the creature. They thought the legends described the Greek minotaur, but Sarangay is a unique creature with its own distinct features. The creature is said to be half male water buffalo and half man, and its appearance is reminiscent of the minotaur.

Philippine folklore is a treasure trove of strange mythical creatures, and Sarangay is one of the lesser-known creatures that has stood the test of time. Despite its obscurity, the story of Sarangay continues to fascinate and intrigue those who are interested in folklore and mythology.

Origin and Mythology

Sarangay is a mythical creature that originates from the Ibanag people of the Philippines. According to folklore, Sarangay is described as half bull, specifically a male water buffalo, and half man. It is said to have a jewel or gemstone attached to its ears, which it guards fiercely.

Cultural Significance

Sarangay is considered a powerful creature in Ibanag culture, and it is often associated with strength and protection. The jewel or gemstone attached to its ears is believed to have magical properties that can ward off evil spirits and protect the wearer from harm. Because of this, the creature has become an important symbol of strength and protection in Ibanag folklore.

Historical References

When the Spanish first arrived in the Philippines in the 17th century, they heard stories about Sarangay and thought that the creature was similar to the Greek Minotaur. However, over time, it became clear that Sarangay was a unique creature with its own mythology and cultural significance.

Despite its importance in Ibanag folklore, Sarangay is not as well-known as other mythical creatures from the Philippines, such as the aswang or kapre. However, it remains an important part of Ibanag culture and continues to be celebrated in festivals and other cultural events.

Physical Description

Horn and Tail

Sarangay is a mythical creature that has the physical appearance of a minotaur. It has a bull’s head with a pair of sharp horns sprouting out the sides of its head. The creature’s tail is long and bushy, resembling that of a bull. The tail is used for balance and helps the creature to move quickly.

Size and Build

Sarangay is a massive creature that is half man and half bull. It has a muscular build and is known to be incredibly strong. The creature’s body is covered in thick black hair, and it has a pair of cloven hooves that make it easy for it to move quickly. Sarangay is known to be as big as a water buffalo and can stand up to 6 feet tall at the shoulder.

Overall, Sarangay is a formidable creature that is known for its strength and size. It is a creature that is both feared and respected, and its physical appearance is a significant factor in its reputation.

Powers and Abilities

Supernatural Strength

Sarangay is known for its incredible strength that surpasses that of a regular human. It is said that they can lift objects that are several times their weight with ease. This strength is attributed to their half-bull form, which gives them a muscular and powerful body. Sarangay’s strength is so great that it is said to be able to defeat multiple opponents with ease.

Magical Attributes

In addition to its physical strength, Sarangay is also believed to possess magical abilities. It is said that Sarangay’s jewel or gemstone attached to its ears possesses magical powers that can grant the possessor immense strength and power. However, stealing the gemstone is not an easy task, as Sarangay is known to guard it fiercely and will not hesitate to kill anyone who tries to take it by force.

Legend has it that Sarangay can also control the elements, such as wind and water, using its magical powers. It is said that Sarangay can cause powerful storms and create massive waves in the ocean. The creature is also believed to have the power of invisibility, which makes it difficult to locate and capture.

Overall, Sarangay is a formidable creature with incredible strength and magical abilities. Its powers make it a force to be reckoned with, and those who dare to face it should be prepared for a fierce battle.

Sarangay in Popular Culture


Sarangay, a creature resembling a minotaur with a jewel attached to its ears, has been a popular figure in Philippine myth and folklore for centuries. This mythical creature has been depicted in various literary works, including children’s books, folklore collections, and novels. One such book is “The Creatures of Philippine Lower Mythology” by Maximo D. Ramos, which features a section on Sarangay. In this book, Ramos describes the creature as possessing a man’s body and a head of a carabao, resembling the Greek minotaur. Sarangay is said to possess a jewel hanging from its ears, which grants supernatural powers to anyone who manages to snatch it without being killed by the monster.

Media and Entertainment

Sarangay has also made appearances in various forms of media and entertainment, including movies, television shows, and video games. One example is the 2016 Filipino horror-comedy film “Sarangay: The Possession,” which tells the story of a group of friends who encounter the mythical creature while on a camping trip. The film features the creature’s signature jewel, which is said to grant its possessor supernatural powers. Sarangay has also appeared in various video games, including the popular mobile game “Mobile Legends: Bang Bang,” where it is a playable hero character. In the game, Sarangay is depicted as a fierce warrior with a bull’s head and a human body, wielding a spear and shield.

Overall, Sarangay’s popularity in Philippine culture has led to its inclusion in various forms of media and entertainment, cementing its place as one of the most iconic mythical creatures in Philippine folklore.

Comparative Mythology

Sarangay is a fascinating creature that has captured the imagination of many. As such, it is not surprising that there are creatures in other cultures that share similarities with Sarangay. In this section, we will explore some of these creatures and their similarities.

Similar Creatures in Folklore

One such creature is the Minotaur in Greek mythology. Like Sarangay, the Minotaur is a half-man, half-bull creature. However, unlike Sarangay, the Minotaur is a product of human and bull breeding. Another creature that shares similarities with Sarangay is the Kting Voar, a Cambodian creature that is also half-man, half-bull. Similarly, the Kting Voar is known to be fierce and protective of its territory.

Global Influence

It is interesting to note that creatures that share similarities with Sarangay are not limited to specific regions or cultures. For example, the Egyptian god Apis was also depicted as a bull with a sun disk between its horns, much like the jewel or gemstone attached to Sarangay’s ears. Similarly, in Hindu mythology, Nandi, the bull, is the mount of Lord Shiva, and is revered as a symbol of strength and fertility.

Overall, the similarities between Sarangay and other creatures in different cultures suggest that there may be a universal fascination with half-man, half-bull creatures. It is intriguing to consider the reasons behind this fascination and what it may reveal about human nature and the human psyche.