A favorite mythological animal
The griffin is a creature with the head, wings, and beak of an eagle, the body of a lion, and (occasionally) the tail or a serpent or scorpion. Its origin is unknown, but believed to be either Mongolian, Babylonian, Assyrian or Persian. The myth of these creatures spread through the then-known world, and can be found in cultures such as Egyptian and Asian.
In Greek mythology, they belonged to Zeus. Later, Romans and medieval Europeans used them for decorations. Especially along-side gargoyles on buildings.
It is likely that traders in Mongolia discovered dinosaur fossils and misinterpreted them as the Griffin, but I like to hold out hope that evidence of this Cryptozoological creature actually existed in antiquity.