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Revision as of 06:08, 19 December 2019

This page is move protected The subject of this article is involved with the Once Upon a Time The subject of this article is involved with Once Upon a Time in Wonderland The subject of this article is involved with a Once Upon a Time related Book The subject of this article is or relates to a creature The subject of this article is involved with the Enchanted Forest The subject of this article is involved with Storybrooke The subject of this article is involved with Wonderland The subject of this article is involved with the World Behind the Mirror The subject of this article is involved with the New Enchanted Forest The subject of this article is featured in Season One of Once Upon a Time The subject of this article is featured in Season Three of Once Upon a Time The subject of this article is featured in Season Four of Once Upon a Time The subject of this article is featured in Season Six of Once Upon a Time The subject of this article is featured in Season Seven of Once Upon a Time
This article focuses on the creature, Dragons.
For the Land Without Magic character, see The Dragon.

I thought that you'd be this scary dragon bitch, and we'd go get our revenge. You know, blasting all those who did us wrong... But you're just... This real person.

Lily Page to Maleficent src

Dragons are a creature species featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time and Once Upon a Time in Wonderland. They are native to the Enchanted Forest, the Land Without Magic, Wonderland and the New Enchanted Forest, and first appear in the first episode of the first season of Once Upon a Time.


Dragons are scaled, fire-spewing creatures that come in different shapes and colors. All dragons are capable of flight, even the one who don't have wings. Some dragons are capable of taking human form. ("Mother" et al., "I'll Be Your Mirror")

Dragons can mate with each other without knowing who their partner is. Lily refers to this as a "dragon thing". Therefore, a dragon mother can have no knowledge of who the father of her child is. ("Operation Mongoose Part 2")

Dragons reproduce by laying eggs. The mother protects the egg by building a nest and curling her tail around the egg. A dragon capable of shapeshifting into a human will produce offspring that look human when they're hatched, although the child still inherits the parent's ability to take on dragon form. ("Best Laid Plans", "Mother")

When a female dragon builds their nest, they seem to prefer to scorch all the earth around it to mark their territory and to fill the nest with silver treasures. This is what Maleficent did when she built her own nest in a cave. ("Best Laid Plans")

The magic present in dragon eggshells allows people to stop aging. Dragonscales are used as an ingredient in memory potions and dragon breath from an unhatched dead dragon egg can be used for waking up a person who has lost their magic to Hrunting. ("A Curious Thing", "Sympathy for the De Vil", "The Black Fairy")

Dragon Breeds

There are at least three different breeds of dragons:

Reptilian with four legs and two wings. ("The Shepherd et al.) 420LilyDragon.png
Reptilian with two wings and two legs. ("Bad Blood") W107Dragon2.png
Serpentine with four legs and no wings. This breed also has scalp hair and facial hair. ("I'll Be Your Mirror") 608Seriously!.png


Before First Curse

During her years spent honing her magical skills, Maleficent gains the ability to shapeshift into a dragon. Near her home, she scorches a portion of land while in dragon form, with her fire breath leaving one tree still burning long after the destruction she created has died down. After being bested by Briar Rose,[1] Maleficent gets even by cursing her into an eternal sleep, which is eventually broken by King Stefan when he gives Briar Rose true love's kiss. Maleficent then enters a state of isolation and depression from having her revenge spoiled and loses her ability to shift into her dragon form. With help from Regina, Maleficent attempts to regain her inner fire by turning into a dragon to defend herself against Stefan, but it fails, causing both of them to be taken prisoner by the king. On her second attempt to transform, she succeeds, and her fearsome form intimidates Stefan and his men into retreating. ("The Thing You Love Most", "Enter the Dragon")

At some point, the Dragon loses his daughter after making a mistake and paying the price for it. ("I'll Be Your Mirror")

Unhappy with a dragon terrorizing his kingdom, King Midas wishes for King George's son, Prince James, to slay the beast, and he will reward their kingdom with a supply of gold in return. However, when the prince is fatally wounded in a battle with Behemoth, his twin brother, David, is procured to take his place. While preparing for battle, one of the soldiers advises him to let everyone else kill the beast so he can claim the glory. Closing in on the beast's cave, the dragon ferociously spits fire and burns the entire infantry to death. With only one soldier still alive, David protects the man from harm by grabbing a discarded sword and luring the dragon into chasing him. When David seeks cover in the cave, he discovers the dragon's neck is not long enough to reach all the way in. Using the sword, he severs the dragon head, which is later given to King Midas as proof. King Midas is so pleased with the results that he offers his daughter, Princess Abigail, to the faux prince in marriage. Although David is against it, King George coerces him into accepting as a means to secure an alliance between the two kingdoms. ("The Shepherd")

After escaping from the Evil Queen's grasp, Prince Charming becomes lost in the Infinite Forest on his way to rescue his true love, Snow White, from a sleeping curse. The wizard, Rumplestiltskin, enchants a ring to find his beloved, but first, Prince Charming must help him hide a potion in a beast. Arriving at a castle, the prince bursts in as Maleficent] casually sits on her throne. He demands to know where the beast is, and she gleefully answers his question by transforming into a colossal dragon. With his defenses low, Prince Charming can only repeatedly dodge her attacks. While he hides behind a pillar, Maleficent stalks the room in search of him. When her head is turned away from him, he notices a large flap behind one of her ears. Seizing the chance, he goads Maleficent into chasing after him. At one point, he hops onto her neck and throws the potion into her lobe, to which Maleficent roars at the object's intrusion in her body and shakes him off her neck. As she attacks in retaliation, he jumps out a window and lands in the ocean. Spotting Prince Charming in the water below, she angrily puffs another stream of fire, but her flames are unable to reach him. ("A Land Without Magic")

While in her dragon form, Maleficent meets a male dragon and mates with him, becoming pregnant from the union, though she never finds out his identity. ("Operation Mongoose Part 2")

After the Evil Queen steals the Dark Curse from Maleficent, which she originally traded to her for the Sleeping Curse, Maleficent, Cruella De Vil, and Ursula accompany Snow White and Prince Charming to the Tree of Wisdom, a magical entity who will answer any question asked by the most valiant of heroes, so they may learn how to stop the Queen's curse. On the way there, the group must go over a bridge, however, the guards deem the three villains too untrustworthy to be allowed across. An impatient Maleficent then shapeshifts into dragon form, incinerating the guards into ash, as her method of bypassing their disapproval. ("Unforgiven")

A pregnant Maleficent, while in dragon form, eventually stakes her claim on a western territory, choosing a cave in the area as her nesting spot, and scares off the locals with her fire-breath. She lays an egg in the cave, where she amasses a collection of various items for her future child, including a baby rattle. To keep intruders out, she has Cruella and Ursula posted outside as guards, though they are taken out temporarily when Snow White and Charming throw poppy dust on them before sneaking in. The couple sees Maleficent sleeping while in dragon form with her tail curled protectively around the egg, but they manage to grab it, causing Maleficent to retaliate before reverting to her human form. She begs them not to take her child, however, Snow only promises to return it after she and Charming are done with it. Out of fear of their own unborn child's potential to be evil, Snow and Charming bring the dragon egg to the Apprentice, who infuses the child in the egg with darkness to ensure the couple's child will remain good. Consequently, the Apprentice prepares to send the egg to another realm as the darkness cannot stay in the Enchanted Forest. Snow and Charming, not knowing this was part of his plan, try to save the egg, which begins hatching as it is sucked into the portal, along with Cruella and Ursula. ("Best Laid Plans", "Operation Mongoose Part 2")

The Apprentice's portal brings Cruella and Ursula to Minnesota[2] in the Land Without Magic, where they abandon Maleficent's newly hatched daughter in the woods to die, but they use the shell of her dragon egg to prevent themselves from aging for thirty years. A short time after this, the child is found with a crescent moon necklace in her possession and brought to an orphanage. A couple, James and Priscilla Page,[3] later adopt her and name her Lilith. ("Sympathy for the De Vil", "Best Laid Plans")

Knowing the Evil Queen's curse may arrive soon, Grumpy and Sleepy are assigned to the very top of the castle as outlook guards. While Sleepy, as usual, dozes off, Grumpy looks on in shock as a strangely colored smoke engulfs everything in the near distance. Various wildlife, such as a dragon, take to the air in an attempt to fly away from the spreading cloud. ("Pilot")

During First Curse

With the Evil Queen's curse enacted, many Enchanted Forest inhabitants are ripped from their world to another realm, where they are given false memories and written new, unhappy lives in Storybrooke. Unlike everyone else, Maleficent suffers differently by remaining stuck in dragon form as the potion is still hidden in her body. Imprisoned underground beneath the town library, she guards a trigger, an item capable of permanently erasing Storybrooke. ("The Evil Queen")

Twenty-eight years later, the curse savior, Emma, enters Storybrooke. Due to her presence, the curse begins to weaken. Halfway across the world, August, who once broke a promise to his father to protect Emma, is slowly turning back to wood. Traveling to Hong Kong, he tries to find a magical solution from someone called the Dragon. As he waits in line, Tamara gets her turn with the Dragon, where she lies about having cancer and needing a miracle cure, in order to find out if he possesses real magic. Although the Dragon knows she is lying, he plays along and, in exchange for a cherished photo of her grandmother, gives her a potion. As for August, the healer agrees, for an extensive amount of money, to provide a substance to stop him from turning back into wood. Short on cash, he steals from Tamara and delivers the payment to the Dragon. When August leaves, Tamara chases him down and steals the potion from him. Visiting the Dragon, Tamara admits to her lies and reveals she ran tests on the potion he gave her, which had substances not known in this world. Satisfied with finding real magic, she then declares she wants to ensure no one else by killing the Dragon. In turn, the Dragon attempts to fight back by insisting she hasn't seen the "real him" yet, but as he begins rising in the air to show her his true form, Tamara uses a taser to shock him to death. The next day, August wishes to ask the Dragon for another cure, but he finds him dead. ("Selfless, Brave and True")

Desperate to save a comatose Henry, who ate a poisoned apple turnover, Emma and Regina join ranks to find a true love potion from Maleficent that Mr. Gold claims can revive the boy. Rather than this, Mr. Gold actually has his own motives for needing the potion to bring magic to Storybrooke. Armed with her father's sword, Emma takes an elevator to the floor below the library while Regina operates the switch on ground level. After accidentally alerting Maleficent to her presence, she attempts to injure the dragon with gunfire, but there is no effect. In her haste to run for cover, Emma drops the sword, although she later retrieves the weapon and throws it straight into Maleficent's chest. Defeated, the dragon explodes into a shimmer of embers, leaving the potion behind for Emma to take. ("A Land Without Magic")

After First Curse

In Wonderland, Alice and Knave are on a mission to rescue Cyrus from Jafar. Unable to access a hovering lair, they eventually discover a birdbark tree, whose branches can float. While making a basket from the branches to reach the lair, Alice has a bitter reunion with her father, Edwin, although she doesn't know he is actually Jafar in disguise. As they resume work on the basket, Jafar secretly casts a spell to draw out a wing-armed dragon. During the attack, Alice and Knave shield themselves from the dragon's fire blast using their assembled branch slants. The trio escape into the woods, where Edwin is nearly devoured by the beast until Alice kills it. Later that night, they cook some of the dragon meat for their supper, during which Alice notices Edwin doesn't say grace as he usually does, which tips her off to the fact someone is impersonating him. ("Bad Blood")

After Second Curse

When Ursula and Cruella De Vil use the blood of Mary Margaret and David on Maleficent's ashes as part of her resurrection, it brings her back in her dragon form before she regresses back to her normal human form. ("Unforgiven")

After learning Cruella and Ursula, who were taken away by the same portal as her child years ago, had abandoned the baby in the woods, Maleficent confronts Cruella, who admits she and Ursula not only did that, but they used the leftover dragon eggshell to prevent themselves from aging for thirty years. An infuriated Maleficent shifts into dragon form to teach her a lesson, but Cruella uses her power of persuasion to make the latter lie down and take a nap. ("Sympathy for the De Vil")

Maleficent's daughter, Lily, is found by Emma and Regina before they bring her back to Storybrooke to meet her mother for the first time. Lily, aware of the fact Emma's parents were responsible for separating her from Maleficent, wishes to get revenge on them. While Maleficent also wanted that, she tells her daughter that their time together as a family is better spent letting the past go so they can be happy together. Lily disagrees, disgusted that the tough dragon mother she imagined herself having is actually so meek, and scoffingly wonders if Emma's parents won her over with belly rubs and dragon treats. Upon realizing her daughter intends to leave Storybrooke, Maleficent begs her not to, as she cannot follow her out of town or risk turning back into the ash she once was, but Lily refuses to listen. Later, Regina steals some of Lily's blood so the Author, Isaac, can use it to write Zelena out of existence. Lily's anger reaches a boiling point by this time, triggering her into transforming into her dragon form, before flying off into the woods, where she is spotted by Maleficent, Mary Margaret, and David. Maleficent attempts to reach Lily while the latter is on a rampage, but when Mary Margaret gets close, Lily knocks her into a rock and takes off again. After calming down, Lily reverts to her human form and reconciles with her mother. ("Mother")

Before Third Curse
After Isaac's stories are undone by Henry, Lily is at the diner where she tells Emma about her necklace, which is a piece of the egg she originally hatched from and her only clue about her birth father. Lily explains that not even her mother Maleficent knows who he is as when they met, both of them were in dragon form. ("Operation Mongoose Part 2")

After Third Curse

Having somehow survived Tamara's attack, the Dragon relocates to an herbal shop in New York City's Chinatown, where the heroes seek him out for help in rescuing their families who are trapped in the Land of Untold Stories. The Dragon focuses his magic to open a portal between realms, but he soon reaches the limit of his powers, causing the forming portal to fall apart completely. He then suggests they can still find other sources of magic in the Land Without Magic, as magic in this realm is not easily found but can still be seen by those who believe in it. ("An Untold Story")

Later that evening, after the heroes have saved their loved ones, the Dragon is attacked by the Evil Queen, the dark side of Regina whom she killed earlier. The Queen rips out his heart and imprisons him in the World Behind the Mirror, where he remains by himself until Emma and Regina are trapped in the same world. From outside that realm, the Queen uses the Dragon's heart to compel him into transforming into his dragon form and going after Emma and Regina. She then gives Henry the opportunity to smash the Dragon's heart in order to save both of his mothers, however, Henry chooses to hit the mirror instead just before the Dragon breathes fire all over it. As the glass cracks, Henry preserves the Dragon's life by grabbing the heart to prevent the heat of the flames from burning it to a crisp. ("An Untold Story", "I'll Be Your Mirror")

During Fourth Curse
Engulfed by the Black Fairy's Dark Curse in Storybrooke, Prince Charming is separated from his daughter Emma and transported back to the Enchanted Forest, where he wakes up at the altar of his old castle. With the other realms disappearing because of Emma's fading belief and the subsequent loss of magic, he and Hook leave on their own to fetch a magic bean. At the top of the Beanstalk, the two men venture into the Giants' Lair, where Charming entrusts Hook with getting onto a table to fetch the bean. Hook succeeds in retrieving one but quickly jumps down back to Charming's side when the room begins to shake, signaling that something is approaching. While both men expect to face a giant, they are instead met with a billow of fire from a dragon, which spurs them into fleeing from the lair and down the beanstalk. ("The Final Battle Part 1")

After Fourth Curse

While being held as Lady Tremaine's hostage, Henry is rescued by Hook and Regina, who arrive through a portal to save him. Henry notices Emma's absence, which Hook explains away by lying about her staying behind in Storybrooke to fight off a swarm of tiny dragons. ("A Pirate's Life")

On a quest to pave out his own experience with adventure and danger, Henry enters a cave with Hook and Ella to slay a golden dragon. They venture further into the cave but only find a scrounger freeloading on wine that the beast left behind after it migrated elsewhere. Before marching the man out, Ella scolds him for drinking wine which belongs to people whom the dragon originally stole from. ("Breadcrumbs")

After Fifth Curse
As Zelena is driving Regina to a special event at the royal castle, they see Maleficent flying around in her dragon form and Regina reveals Maleficent discovered Lily's father is actually Zorro. ("Leaving Storybrooke")

Known Dragons


On-Screen Notes

  • A dragon is featured in the title card for "The Shepherd",[4] "Bad Blood",[5] "Unforgiven"[6] and "Mother".[7]
  • There are at least three dragon breeds:
    • The six-limbed dragons (four legs and two wings) featured in several episodes of the show have the traits of a European dragon. ("The Shepherd" et al.)
    • The dragon that Alice, Will and Jafar encounter has only two legs,[8] meaning that it's similar to a wyvern. A wyvern is a legendary creature with a dragon's head, bird-like wings, a reptilian body, two legs, and a tail. The most important difference between a dragon and a wyvern is that dragons are depicted with four legs, or without legs, whereas a wyvern only has two legs and does not breathe fire, although they are known to breathe poison instead.[9] However, the two-legged creature that Alice and the others encounter does indeed breathe fire, making it a type of wing-armed dragon. ("Bad Blood")
    • The Dragon's natural form is a Chinese dragon, which are depicted as quadrupeds with no wings as it can fly without wings. ("Changelings")
  • Dragons are considered as animals, as Cruella magically calmed down the dragon Maleficent with persuasion magic which, according to Isaac's story, only works on animals. ("Sympathy for the De Vil")

Props Notes

Set Dressing

Costume Notes


Note: "Archive" denotes archive footage.


  1. Abrams, Natalie (October 18, 2012). Lightning Round 2: Once Upon a Time Bosses Answer Your Burning Questions!. TV Guide. “Was it Aurora's (Sarah Bolger) mother that Regina (Lana Parrilla) was referring to back in Season 1 who got the best of Maleficent (Kristin Bauer)? Edward Kitsis: Yes.”
  2. Maleficent: "Just what the Dark One showed me... That she was banished to this world thirty years ago, to a place called Minnesota, where she was adopted by a couple." ("Lily")
  3. File:419Newspaper.png
  4. File:106Title.png
  5. File:W106Title.png
  6. File:413Title.png
  7. File:420Title.png
  8. File:W107Dragon2.png
  9. Difference Between Wyvern and Dragon. Difference Between. Retrieved on January 1, 2019.
  10. File:102YourStaff.png
  11. 11.0 11.1 File:105HeWentThatWay.png
  12. 12.0 12.1 File:611HeyTherePinocchio.png
  13. 13.0 13.1 File:OPMrSirDragon.png
  14. File:413TheMoreDifficult2.png
  15. 15.0 15.1 File:202APortrait.png
  16. File:218Clock.png
  17. 17.0 17.1 File:220InTheHeart.png
  18. File:412MaleficentApproachesFire.png
  19. File:420JustYouAre.png
  20. 20.0 20.1 File:510YouWantIt.png
  21. File:421HeroesAndVillainsPaperback.png
  22. File:622EmmaDefeatedTheDragonPage.png
  23. File:202StuckHere.png
  24. File:216HaveOpinions.png
  25. File:217ImNotHappy.png
  26. File:222ImpendingDoom.png
  27. File:309Yes.png
  28. File:317WhereHaveYouBeen.png
  29. File:320BelleGoldKiss.png
  30. File:406LetMeGo!.png
  31. File:407HookGoldAlone.png
  32. File:502TheBloodyCrocodile.png
  33. File:503OneLastIngredient.png
  34. File:510WaitingCenturies.png
  35. File:511ItFindsWorthy.png
  36. File:602GoldEnteringShop.png
  37. File:604SpotOfShopping.png
  38. File:606ThePirateAndHisSon.png
  39. File:607Hello.png
  40. File:609HookWalksOut.png
  41. File:610ThatGnat.png
  42. File:613SpillInnocentBood.png
  43. File:616DoneWithNice.png
  44. File:617Hello.png
  45. File:619ResistedHerBefore.png
  46. File:620ShopLikeThat.png


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