Long read. I hope you are ready to learn!
I am not an etymologist. I decided to take a break from farming Alatreon and my research lead me down a decent rabbit trail. So I decided to share my learning with all of you! Remember this is all speculative and for fun. I'm in no way implying that any of this information is true. So if you have any information you'd like to contribute, let me know and I will try to edit it in. Also I am on mobile, so if there are any weird grammar errors or formatting issues please accept my apology. I will try to edit as I see issues that I didn't catch in the proof read. Let's begin!
Most of this information will focus on the word "Escaton." A quick Google search will show that it is not a word. One thing it does bring up is a word called "Eschaton." Pronounced "eh-skuh-taan." Which for me is practically identical in pronunciation unless I emphasize the second syllable as "skah." So I decided to look into this word. Eschaton is a modern word that started to appear in the 1930's. The root word is the Greek neuter word for last, "eskhatos." Between there, it makes a shift from the Greek neuter word "Eskhaton," to the English "Eschaton."
The definition of Eschaton according to Oxford Languages is "the final event in the divine plan, the end of the world."
How it fits with Alatreon:
I believe Escaton is derived from Eschaton given the nature of Alatreon's ability and essentially the "end of the hunt." A fitting name for Alatreon's attack given the near god-like status of the Black Dragon's in the MH universe. Alatreon is literally passing its final judgment on you in the form of a DPS check. If you fail to meet it, well, your quest ends. At least in multiplayer without some extremely impressive coordination. It's quite literally the final event or the "Final Judgment" if you don't meet the DPS check. Which more or less adds to the "god-like" or deity mythos that the Black Dragon's have in the MH universe. All fitting given the difficulty of the fight and all of the threads its produced in this sub.
The speculative "religious" allusions in the design of the Black Dragon:
Here's where the rabbit hole gets deeper. Back in the day, the original Black Dragon was Fatalis. Taking inspiration from the western or European dragons, it was a relatively simple design but it's more than just its appearance. Fatalis was considered to be "evil" giving it a more antagonistic persona. Which fits into the western dragon theme since most western dragons are fantastic creatures associated with evil or destructive intent as opposed to eastern dragons which tend to be more benevolent. The western influence is most likely based on Christian Theology painting dragons (or similar symbols) as evil. Even associating a portion of the end times with the "red dragon."
These tendencies came true for every Black Dragon in the series with practically every Black Dragon being associated with destruction or cataclysmic events. Fatalis, destroys Schrade. Crimson Fatalis, controls volcanic activity. Alatreon, lives in secluded areas and is extremely territorial driving all away and is extremely volatile. Dire Miralis, stains the sea red after killing everything around it in the ocean due to its insane body heat. White Fatalis, is the interesting one here. Despite being a practically glowing white, it still shares the moniker of the Black Dragon. I find this fascinating since in western culture, the shining white is associated with good, pure, and holy. As opposed to black, which is associated with evil, sadness, or mourning. In Asian culture, the colors appear to switch with white focusing on death and mourning. White Fatalis to me is a combination of both aspects. It shares its evil Black Dragon pension for destruction in its roots while being colored in death. These are some of the main themes among the Black Dragon's, destruction, death, and power.
The speculative "religious" allusions in the design of the Red Dragon:
I'll admit, this is harder. Unlike the Black Dragon's which have 5 representatives, we only have Safi'Jiiva. I'm not even sure if the Devs have made a moniker like they did with the Black Dragons. I guess time will tell if this holds true in the future but wanted to draw some speculations I have about the Red Dragons or Safi. So I'm fully aware that these thoughts could apply to only Safi but where's the fun in that?
The rabbit hole gets deeper. If Black Dragon's are the god's of destruction, the Red Dragon's are the devil's of life. From what are only representative of the Red Dragon's shows us. Safi itself seems to be an allusion to the Christian Devil (more below). They serve as a contrast to the Black Dragon's in the sense that they attract and twist life to their own benefit. If the Seeker's words are to be believed, Alatreon may have been seeking Safi for a fight over territory. In essence Safi doesn't necessarily destroy life as much as it takes it to fuel itself. Black Dragon's drive life away and Red Dragon's attract it.
So how does this relate to "religious" allusions to Safi. First off, Safi is a western style dragon and a good one at that. While being attributed as "The Red Dragon" which is also mentioned in Christianity's end times in the book of Revelations. Which connects us back to Eschaton or Eschatology. Rather the study of the end times concerning death, judgement, and the fate of humanity.
Important to note that Eschatology is a study of a religion's end times so to speak and not exclusively tied to one religion.
So it sort of makes sense? As Xeno, the Devs took a moth-like structure in both appearance and motif. Luring a moth to flame as it lured Elder Dragons. But consider this speculation. Xeno wanted bioenergy and had an effect on the Elder Dragons that was so strong and attracted them from their original graveyard, the Rotten Vale. The kicker is that they still die and fueled for Xeno's benefit. Almost a twisted Garden of Eden situation. The devil or Lucifer, some refer to as Lucifer Morningstar, is sometimes known as the Son of the Morning. Xeno gives off this otherworldly light within and outside of its cocoon and is almost considered alien because of it. On top of the subtle star motifs associated with Xeno, i.e. the Sapphire Star. This is an interesting allusion since Lucifer was at first an angel in Christianity. And when our hunter slays Xeno, it falls. The next time we here of Xeno, it has grown older and more sinister becoming Safi. Abandoning its otherworldly glow and features for deep red and jagged points. Manipulated life to its benefit so much that the Secluded Valley is deprived of it and even goes deeper as you fight it in its "underworld." Here is where the star motifs start taking place. The veins in Safi's wings look like constellations and the name of its big attack is the Sapphire of the Emperor. The Sapphire Star drops as it explodes in a team wiping event unless you protect yourself. A red dragon that manipulates life and covered in star motifs makes it a pretty good allusion to the Christian devil.
Ultimately, I find these speculations, maybe even coincidences to be interesting. Though lore is not their strong suit. Whether anything I have written is true or not the Devs clearly put a lot of thought into their monster designs. For example, Shara Isvalda's allusions to Hinduism including lotus symbols, eye opening (third eye), and theme. I personally believe that Shara's multiple appendages are a homage to Hindu god's being depicted with multiple arms. Then there is Nergigante whose name is an anagram for "Regen Giant." A slight nod to its "regenerative" (more like hardening) abilities. It also shares part of its name with Nergal, the Mesopotamian God of destruction and war. Considering Nergigante's knack for fighting Elder Dragons and hyper aggressiveness, it's fitting.
Statement from OP:
I hope all who made it this far enjoyed this. I will probably edit this a few times to add some points, fix grammar, and add anybodies points if I find it necessary. I don't think I can summarize everything in a TL,DR that wouldn't be long too. Please remember that this is all for fun and speculation so please do not take anything here as concrete evidence. I hope that there is some interesting discussion here. Feel free to chime in if you feel I represented some of this information incorrectly. Thank you all for your time and good luck with Alatreon!
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