Let it here be known that there are two distinct types of the creature known as the Dragon. Firstly, there are the fire-breathing creatures of large size, evil nature and malevolent visage. They resemble large winged lizards and can fly over long distances, often carrying off sheep, cows, or people in their cruel talons. They prefer the taste of virgin girls, and like to situate themselves where these are in plentiful supply. This is most commonly near country villages of the ordinary type, which they terrorize with the fear of a fiery doom in order to force the villagers to sacrifice their young maids, and also thereby extort much gold and other treasure. They dwell by choice in caves, lying about on huge mounds of the loot they have accumulated in this way throughout their long lives.
This kind of creature is called the Greater Dragon. They do not exist, yet their existence remains a stubborn fiction. All but a few corners of the globe have been searched, and not a trace of anything which even remotely resembles them has yet been found. And how could it? How does a creature sustain fire within its belly, let alone breathing it outward, without injuring itself thereby? And how could such a huge creature fly, even with its enormous wings. In addition, the invention of paper money would doubtless have proved to be an insurmountable obstacle to their bedding arrangements. And further, it is unproved that having engaged in carnal relations has any effect on the edibility or taste of a person, and logically there is no reason why this would be so.
So, friends, do not believe in stories of these creatures, for they are not true at all, and those that tell you of them are probably attempting to deceive you to their own advantage.
A brief examination will tell us how such a preposterous myth may have come about. It is true that there are large birds, known as Rukhs, or Rocs, which can carry off whole animals in their talons. These inhabit Eastern parts, and other far away places. It is also true that a certain bird, called the Phoenix, which also hails from eastern parts, can set itself on fire in order to reproduce. I have seen an entire flock of burning Phoenix (in the plural, also) during their mating ritual with my own eyes, and it was a sight I will never forget.
It seems, then, that the Rukh and the Phoenix, along with bone fide lizards such as the Basilisk (of which, see next week), have become confused with the Lesser Dragon (of which, see below), and fact and fiction have been merged together into a mythical creature by the minds of the credulous and uneducated. But there is no need for us now to think thus, as we know by our art and science that all said creatures are separate, and that no such creature as the Greater Dragon exists on earth today.
The second kind of Dragon is the Lesser or Common Dragon. Common Dragons are found in many places throughout the world. They are large lizards, which cannot fly or breathe fire, but nonetheless are vicious brutes, and grim and dangerous foes to men. Some such can reach lengths of up to 25 feet long, and these can swallow a grown man whole. There are none in these isles, as our blessed ancestor and patron St. Barnabus chased them away over the sea with a special stick, designed for that very purpose by God.
However, other countries are not so blessed as we, and thus there is good reason to be fearful of these creatures if you venture onto the continent. On my various trips away from home, I have hired certain men who are expert in these matters, to guide me safely through the strange terrain, in order to be sure of encountering none of these creatures, and thankfully I have never seen one, although I have it on good authority that they are a real menace in some places.
(From Severall Mythical Monsters Debunked).