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The Ophiogenis is one of a race of creatures with origins in Greek and Roman mythology, legend and folklore. In particular, accounts of their existence first arose in Strabo's work Geography and Aelian's work On Animals.
Beliefs as to the origins of the Ophiogenes are twofold.
Some believe that the Ophiogenes' progenitor was a serpent supernaturally transformed into a man. Others believe that the first Ophiogenis originated from the union of a god in serpent form, who mated with a princess, Halia (daughter of Sybaris), in a Phrygian grove dedicated to the goddess Artemis.
Of course, it is entirely possible that both racial origins are true, and that each resulting tribe simple adopted the same name.
For the national origins of their ancestors, Ophiogenes tend toward darker skin tones.
The hero changed from a serpent to a man was African in appearance (people took him for a member of Africa's Psylli tribe), and so those descended from him will have African traits (dark skin, woolly hair, broad facial features).
The hero born from Princess Halia took after his mother, who lived in the land of Phrygia (modern-day Turkey), and so they tend toward olive-colored skin and slicker hair.