With its long coast and numerous rivers, China is no stranger to tales of giant sea creatures and powerful, deadly serpentine beasts. Legend has it that one of these was a wicked, chameleon-like behemoth that lurked beneath the waters of the Chien Tang River. Called Kiau by the locals, this monster was said to be ferocious and able to camouflage itself during attacks, making it nearly impossible for those under attack to fight back. One of the most famous attacks thought to be carried out by Kiau dates back to the year 488 C.E. A government official had been sailing the Chien Tang when he was met by 300-foot-long serpent that was black in color. The story goes that Kiau continued to terrorize the river for another 600-plus years, until meeting its demise at the hands of a local hero who leapt into the river and spent several days in battle with the beast before emerging triumphant.


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