It has been said that one of the inspirations of the Cyclops of Greek mythology was from a skull of a dwarf elephant. Being twice the size of a human, people interpreted the nasal cavity (for the trunk) in the skull as a large single eye-socket. Although the one giant eye has been a mainstay for Cyclops since, I wanted to see if I could somehow bring the tusks back.

enter image description here

Let's say that Cyclops are taller than the average human, as most Greek stories said they were giants, and their eyes are a result from a dark environment from evolution and have binocular vision. Should the tusks be a part of their teeth or separate like actual elephant tusks? And regardless of placement, why or how would Cyclops use them in the first place?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ tusks don't stay attached for long, they tend to fall out of the sockets $\endgroup$
    – John
    Aug 31, 2018 at 0:07
  • $\begingroup$ @John wut?..... $\endgroup$
    – kingledion
    Aug 31, 2018 at 0:21
  • $\begingroup$ I Mean that the greeks did not find skulls with the tusks in them, thus they were not part of the mythos. $\endgroup$
    – John
    Aug 31, 2018 at 4:57
  • $\begingroup$ i.ytimg.com/vi/lKGXnesyeRw/hqdefault.jpg $\endgroup$ Aug 31, 2018 at 15:54

2 Answers 2


No matter where exactly tusks are placed, they are still teeth and made of the strongest material in a human (or Cyclops) body.

All you need is an evolutionary reason for them to exist.

Since Cyclopes are quite belligerent and carnivorous (if I remember correctly), their canines could have been used to kill prey. Imagine Cyclopes evolving from Baboons. enter image description here

During the evolution from ape-like ancestors to Cyclopes, long canines became a symbol of masculinity and sexually attractive, so they grew longer and longer, comparable to the tail of a peacock. Long tusks prevailed in the natural selection because they prevent opponents from strangling the individual.

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    $\begingroup$ +1 for runaway sexual trait, Also might to worth pointing out that Tusks like the peacock could be down to both attractiveness and as an honest indicator otherwise know as a Fisherian Runaway, $\endgroup$ Aug 31, 2018 at 9:01

Elephant tusks are made from different material to teeth. More like a much denser tougher kind of hair so it probably wouldn't have much use in chewing food especially if you want him to consume bones as well as meat. Best to keep them separate.

Most animals use tusks in a defensive way or for foraging or for some kind of mating display. since the cyclops was aggressive and predatory I'd think short but sharp pointed tusks used to quickly kill prey.


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