The Crow: legends, beliefs, meanings…

Hello, everyone! You probably noticed that the category “Animals & Plants” only had articles about herbs and such so far. With today’s article, I’d like to finally introduce animals in my website. I would say to start with fireworks and talk about one of the most “discussed” in terms of meaning: the Crow.

The Crow - Legends, beliefs, meanings...

Unfortunately, this bird built over the years a really “black” fame in most cultures around the world. Maybe because of its dark plumage? It’s not a piece of news that black animals are often seen as a symbol of misfortune. The crow makes no exception.

Although, it’s curious to see how it’s been described with a candid, white plumage in the very first legends about it. Then, it appears that its transformation happened because of curses and such. But let’s go back and get some more info about it through mythology, which is always an interesting point of view and a good point where to start.

Legends & Beliefs

In Greek mythology, we read about Apollo and his insane love for Coronide. The crow in this legend, had the “fault” of referring to his owner, Apollo, that his beloved chose a mortal human being instead of him, a God. The poor crow however, had no faults if not of being loyal to his owner since, before this event, the latter considered it as a member of the family. But we all know that love often makes us blind and irrational. So Apollo, driven by his jealousy and anger, decided to curse the crow condemning it to a black plumage as a symbol of “messenger of ominous news”. But not every culture sees the crow negatively. In fact, according to Norse mythology, the bird is sacred to Odin, the supreme God.

The Crow - Legends, beliefs, meanings...

Legends tell that every morning, Odin used to set free his crows, called Huginn (which means thought) and Muninn (memory), to get information about what was happening in the world. In the evening, the loyal crows would get back to their owner, sitting on his shoulder and referring everything they saw during their exploration.


Norse mythology is not the only one which doesn’t see the crow as a carrier of misfortune. In fact, according to Indian mythology, it was a crow that created Earth. It seems that the bird carried a few seeds in his beak, which gave birth to the very first islands.

Last but not least, in the Native Americans’ culture, the crow was an animal with magical properties, which represent the amplification of our self and could work as a passage between the world of the living and the Underworld. It was considered a healer for shamans and people who were in tight contact with magic and the Great Spirit.

Along with legends, beliefs and superstitions spread everywhere. The Greek writer Porfirio, in the III century A.D., wrote that it was possible to acquire magic powers by eating the heart of a crow. It seems, also, the crows couldn’t have access into the Acropolis (Athens) because they were seen as enemies of the Goddess Athena, whose symbol was an owl. Around the world, there are many other beliefs around this charming animal, seen as a carrier of misfortune, bad news, death and terrifying events.

I have a crows’ nest in front of my house and it’s fascinating to observe them. They’re beautiful, smart animals. Their plumage is exactly what makes them “special”. Would be nice if people could just go over superstitions and old beliefs and appreciate the beauty of our Planet.

The crow as a spirit guide.

Despite the bad reputation this charming animal carried over the years, the crow as a spirit guide has nothing but good to give us. It seems, in fact, that it enhances the power of foresight to those who choose to work with it since its spirit can see throughout time and past the veils into spaces and places often hidden to humans’ eyes. It’s not a case that its related to wisdom, too.
The crow is also a synonym of change. It will help you to face change throughout your life and balance your energies along with it. Most importantly, the message it carries is not to fear the change. I think you all heard (and probably experienced) the “shadow work“. We all need it, at some point, to evolve spiritually. People doing their shadow work are often in tight contact with the Crow spirit. Thanks to the mentioned foresight ability, it will help them with introspection and great insights to make it easier. Another situation is when you feel feeble, especially when you doubt your abilities and your skills.

…And as a Totem Animal.

People with the crow as a totem animal, are usually strong, smart and skilled creators. Thanks to their ability to see “beyond”, they have a natural tendency to manifest what they wish for. On a more “negative” side (even though it always depends on how you use some particular skills), crow people can be a bit tricky and manipulators. This, of course, it’s not a must. As I said, it all depends on what you decide to do with your gifts. As long as you don’t harm, it’s all good. We already mentioned their “foresight” which is translated, as a totem animal, with the ability to notice and predict things before others, especially when it’s about to protect their beloved ones.

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