Bird Families

Black Crested Eagle / Spizaetus tyrannus


According to modern concepts, the species attributed to eagles represent a monophyletic group, to which representatives of the Harpiinae subfamily are morphologically close. This includes the genera Harpia, New Guinea harpies (Harpyopsis), Long-tailed harpies (Morphnus), Philippine harpies (Pithecophaga), and Hermit Eagles (Harpyhaliaetus). However, the similarities with this group may be convergent.

Subfamily Eagles (Aquilinae)

Rod Eagle (Aquila)
Aquila adalberti Spanish Imperial Eagle
A. audax Australian Wedge-tailed Eagle
A. chrysaetos Golden Eagle
A. clanga Great Spotted Eagle
A. gurneyi Moluccan Eagle
A. heliaca Imperial Eagle
A. hastata Indian Spotted Eagle
A. nipalensis Eurasian steppe eagle
A. pomarina Lesser Spotted Eagle
A. rapax Steppe Eagle
A. verreauxi Kaffir black eagle, Verro eagle
A. wahlbergi Walberg Eagle, Silver Eagle

Genus Hawk Eagle (Hieraaetus)
Hieraaetus ayresii
H. fasciatus Hawk (long-tailed) eagle
H. kienerii Indian Hawk Eagle
H. morphnoides Australian Hawk Eagle
H. pennatus Booted Eagle
H. spilogaster African Hawk Eagle
H. wahlbergi Walberg Eagle

Genus Eagle-egg-eating (Ictinaetus)
Ictinaetus malayensis Egg-eating eagle

Genus Comb eagle (Lophaetus)
Lophaetus occipitalis Crested Eagle

Genus Mourning Eagles (Oroaetus)
Oroaetus isidori Mourning Eagle

Genus Battle Eagles (Polemaetus)
Polemaetus bellicosus Battle (warlike) eagle

Genus Crested Eagles (Spizaetus)
Spizaetus africanus African Crested Eagle
S. alboniger
S. bartelsi Javanese Crested Eagle
S. cirrhatus The Fickle Eagle
S. lanceolatus
S. nanus Wallace's Crested Eagle
S. nipalensis Eastern Crested Eagle
S. ornatus Ornate eagle
S. philippensis Philippine Crested Eagle
S. tyrannus Black Crested Eagle

Genus Black and White Eagles (Spizastur)
Spizastur melanoleucus Black and White Eagle

Genus Crowned Eagles (Stephanoaetus')
Stephanoaetus coronatus Crowned Eagle

In ancient Greece, he was a symbol of the Sun, meant spiritual strength, victory and good luck. The Romans called him the bird of the storm, carrying the lightning of Jupiter. In Mithraism, the eagle and the falcon are attributes of the solar god Mithra. Among the Egyptians, he is also a solar symbol, acting in the form of Aha, the son of Horus. The eagle also represents the letter A in Egyptian hieroglyphics, meaning the beginning, the warmth of the day from the sun.

There are surprisingly similar views on the eagle image in the traditions of different peoples. And in China it means the sun. And in the Sumerian-Akkadian tradition, where he is an attribute of the blessed sun god of Canaan, and if about two chapters, it symbolizes Nergal, the deity of the incinerating heat of the midday sun and summer. In essence, the Hittites have a similar approach, giving the bird the features of solar strength and omniscience, and therefore doubling, for clarity, the number of its heads in the image of the God of Storm.

In Syrian Palmyra, an eagle with human hands as a sign of sun worship, had the ability to rejuvenate either by submerging in water, or, like Phoenix, igniting from the solar flame. But the Hindus created the image of a creature with an eagle's head and wings, but the body of a man. This is Garuda, the eater of snakes (in the mythology of the Aztecs there is a similar story about the battle of the king of birds with the serpent of darkness and its outcome). Garuda, by the way, served as a flying machine for Vishnu.

Inspired by divine glory

According to folk tradition, the eagle flies higher than all birds. Hence the idea of ​​him as an exponent of divine greatness and often the image that the powerful celestials themselves take. Recall that when the Olympian gods needed a cupbearer, Zeus sends an eagle for Ganymede or flies himself, turning into an eagle. Ganymede watering the eagle symbolizes the overcoming of death. In another myth, Zeus's anger turned into an eagle and tormented the liver of Prometheus.

It is not by chance that this mythological character is a companion of the supreme gods. Vishnu and Mithra have already been mentioned. But the emblem of the king of the gods Indra was an eagle. And Buddha flew on it, and Maitreya, as an earthly manifestation of one of the Dhyani Buddhas, also honored him, choosing him as an emblem. The Scandinavian Odin and the Sumerian Marduk showed a similar taste in the selection of their attributes.

The rulers used the symbol of the eagle to approach the pantheon of gods. The result of these attempts was associated in mythology with the assessment of the applicant's merits.The Persian king Kai-Kavus tried to ascend to the sky on it, Khvareno (Farn), i.e. honor and glory left King Yima, who defiled himself with a lie, turning into an eagle. And King Arthur from Celtic legends was guarded by the eagles during his sleep in the cave.

And in Rome, this formidable bird personified the emperor, hinting that through this image the monarch would be deified after death. Noting that an eagle can look at the sun without blinking, people endowed it with the ability to transfer souls to heaven, hence the ancient Roman custom of releasing an eagle while burning the body of the deceased emperor.

For the Slavs, this is a bird of God, the lord of heaven. He lives longer than all the birds (with the exception of the Raven) and, like his fellow Palmyra, is not subject to time: having reached a venerable age, he flies to the ends of the world and, having bathed there in a lake with living water, regains youth.


Since ancient times, the eagle has been a symbol of victory. Therefore, he was depicted on the standards of the Roman legions, weapons of many armies. And the great Cyrus placed him on his banner. In ancient China, it meant Yang, victory, power, warrior, courage, perseverance, keen eyesight, fearlessness, strength. Among the Sumerians, he was associated with the god of war Ninurta (Ningirsu), depicted holding either a lunar hare or a snake in his claws.

The Aztec leaders adorned the throne and their own vestments with eagle feathers, the eagle warriors were the guards of the tribe of this people. Even in the calendar there was a corresponding day on which, as it was believed, warlike people were born. It is curious that one of the goddesses was called "the woman-eagle", had a crown of feathers, was the leader of women in labor who died during childbirth. And all because among the Aztecs, the birth of a child was tantamount to taking a prisoner and was regarded as a military feat.

Beneficent of people and expressing the will of the gods

The Indian Garuda, already mentioned, has stolen the drink of immortality. Agni, the god of fire, in the form of an eagle, plucked a fruit from the World Tree and was punished. When his feather fell to the ground (Tsvetaevskoe is remembered: "A flying eagle dropped - a feather"), it turned into a mysterious plant from which "earthly catfish" was extracted - a drink similar to heavenly amrita.

The eagle was the messenger of Zeus / Jupiter. In Iranian mythology, the Anzud bird in the form of an eagle with a lion's head acted as an intermediary between gods and people. The acceptance of the "eagle mail" from the heavenly rulers of destinies is rooted in the belief that if these birds circle low above the earth - expect death or an epidemic, if they soar high - good luck is expected.

Symbolizing Christian Truths

Eagle is a symbol of Ascension and Resurrection. He personifies Christ looking into the Glory of God.

In the Bible, the eagle means the greatness and omnipotence of God. The eagle carrying the sacrifice is a sign of the victory of the high over the low, with a snake in its beak denotes the triumph of Christ over Satan, with outstretched wings - Divine inspiration, a message from heaven and spiritual strength.

His image embodies divine love, justice, courage and faith, and he is one of the four zoomorphic images of the Apocalypse.

..So, the eagle in the ancient culture of the peoples of the world is a symbol of glory, victory, power, honor and justice, i.e. ideal government. How I would like that, regardless of the form of state structure, the authorities comply with this canon, or at least strive for it.