CryptoZoology A to Z; The Encyclopedia of Loch Monsters, Sasquatch, Chupacabras, and Other Authentic Mysteries of Nature

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The ultimate quest for the world's most mysterious creatures.

The Loch Ness Monster, Bigfoot, the Abominable Snowman -- these are the names of the elusive beasts that have caught the eye and captured the imaginations of people around the world for centuries. Recently, tales of these "monsters" have been corroborated by an increase in sightings, and out of these legends a new science has been born: cryptozoology -- the study of hidden animals.


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Cryptozoology A To Z: The Encyclopedia Of Loch Monsters Sasquatch Chupacabras And Other Authentic M

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The ultimate quest for the world's most mysterious creatures.

The Loch Ness Monster, Bigfoot, the Abominable Snowman -- these are the names of the elusive beasts that have caught the eye and captured the imaginations of people around the world for centuries. Recently, tales of these "monsters" have been corroborated by an increase in sightings, and out of these legends a new science has been born: cryptozoology -- the study of hidden animals.

Cryptozoology A to Z, the first encyclopedia of its kind, contains nearly two hundred entries, including cryptids (the name given to these unusual beasts), new animal finds, and the explorers and scientists who search for them. Loren Coleman, one of the world's leading cryptozoologists, teams up with Jerome Clark, editor and author of several encyclopedias, to provide these definitive descriptions and many never-before-published drawings and photographs from eyewitnesses' detailed accounts. Full of insights into the methods of these scientists, exciting tales of discovery, and the history and evolution of this field, Cryptozoology A to Z is the most complete reference ever of the newest zoological science.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780684856025
  • Publisher: Touchstone
  • Publication date: 8/5/1999
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 186,465
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Loren Coleman, M.S.W., has researched the Copycat Effect for more than two decades. Coleman has been an adjunct professor at various universities in New England since 1980 and a senior researcher with the Muskie School for Public Policy. He is currently the primary consultant for the State of Maine's Youth Suicide Prevention Initiative. The author, coauthor, or editor of more than twenty books, including the critically acclaimed work Suicide Clusters, lives in Portland, Maine.
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Read an Excerpt

Abominable Snowman

When most people ponder on the "big three" of cryptozoology, they are thinking of the Loch Ness Monsters, Bigfoot, and the Abominable Snowman. Though many assume these beasts to be mythical, a body of intriguing evidence exists for each. Of the three, the Abominable Snowman is the cryptozoological animal longest known and discussed in the West.

The more proper name is Yeti, but most Westerners have been more familiar with the moniker "Abominable Snowman." "Abominable Snowman" is a phrase coined, accidentally, by a Calcutta Statesman newspaper columnist, Henry Newman, in 1921.

It happened when Newman wrote about the 1921 sighting by Lieutenant Colonel (later Sir) C.K. Howard-Bury and his party, who saw dark forms moving about on a twenty-thousand-foot-high snowfield above their location, the Lhapka-La pass on the Tibetan side of the Himalayan mountains, and viewed them through binoculars. This is the first credible Western sighting of what until then had been mostly a shadowy tale (at least to Westerners) of strange, hairy upright creatures in Tibet, Bhutan, Sikkim, Mustang, and Nepal. Howard-Bury would later, on September 22, 1921, find footprints "three times those of normal humans" at the site where the dark forms were moving about.

The Sherpas insisted that the prints were those of the metoh-kangmi, as Howard-Bury rendered it. Kang-mi loosely means "snow creature." The metoh part should have been written as met-teh, which translates as "man-sized wild creature."

Newman's mistake was caused in part by Howard-Bury's mistransliteration of the Sherpa word. Howard-Bury did not understand that the Sherpas recognized several types of creatures; on this occasion they had used a generic, not a specific, term. The error was compounded when Newman changed Howard-Bury's metoh-kangmi to metch kangmi, which he explained as a Tibetan word meaning "Abominable Snowman."

In any case, this proved to be a pivotal event in cryptozoological history. As Ivan T. Sanderson wrote, "The result was like the explosion of an atomic bomb." The melodramatic name "Abominable Snowman" spurred gigantic press interest. Newspaper coverage multiplied as more and more expeditions sought to climb Mount Everest.

The true origin of the phrase "Abominable Snowman" has been misrepresented over the years. For example, on a 1992 episode of the television series Unsolved Mysteries, a well-known Irish explorer wrongly claimed that the creature got its name because of its horrible odor.

The real animal behind the name is neither abominable nor a true creature of the snows. These beasts usually appear to live in quiet retreat in the steamy mountain valleys of the Himalayas, using the snowy passes as a way to move from one spot to another, leaving behind huge mysterious footprints. They are not — contrary to another widespread misunderstanding — white. And they are not a single creature.

A better generic term for Abominable Snowman is the Sherpa yeti, loosely meaning "that there thing." Yetis are known as huge creatures — humanoid beasts, covered with thick coats of dark fur with arms, like those of anthropoid apes, which reach down to their knees.

A description of the reportedly three types of Yeti is discussed, in depth, within that entry.

Copyright © 1999 by Loren Coleman and Jerome Clark

Zuiyo-maru Monster

In April 1977, thirty miles off the coast of Christchurch, New Zealand, the trawler's nets of a Japanese fishing boat, the Zuiyo-maru, snared a huge animal carcass of an unknown origin. The crew hauled the monstrous body out of the ocean onto the deck, and Michihiko Yano, the ship's assistant production manager, measured the creature and took some now-famous photographs. The creature was thirty-three feet long and weighed about four thousand pounds. It had a snakelike head at the end of a long, slender neck, giving it an unwhale-like appearance. Some of the crew thought it was a rotten whale, but others were not so sure. After great difficulty, the stinking Zuiyo-maru Monster was thrown overboard.

Media attention in Japan focused on the plesiosaur-like appearance of the creature. Interest in Sea Serpents rose. Toys were produced of the Zuiyo-maru Monster.

But Yano had taken samples of the "horny fiber" from one of the monster's fins. Tests determined the Zuiyo-maru Monster was a decomposed basking shark, although few today know that part of the story.

Copyright © 1999 by Loren Coleman and Jerome Clark

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Table of Contents

Cryptozoology Timeline

Abominable Snowman
Barloy, Jean-Jacques
Bayanov, Dmitri
Beast of Bodmin Moor
Beast of 'Busco
Beast of Gevaudan
Bergman's Bear
Big Bird
Bille, Matthew A.
Black Panthers
Blue Tiger
British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club
Chacoan Peccary
Chambers Affair
Clark, Eugenie
Clark, James Alexander
Clark, Ramona
Coleman, Loren
Congo Peacock
Con Rit
Corrales, Scott
Crook, Cliff
Crowe, Ray
Dahinden, René
Dao Van Tien
Dinsdale, Tim
Ellis, Richard
Ernst, William "Ted"
Flathead Lake Monster
Gaal, Arlene
Giant Anaconda
Giant Forest Hog
Giant Monkey
Giant Octopus
Giant Panda
Giant Salamander
Giant Sloth
Giant Turtles
Gibbons, William
Goblin Universe
Green, John
Greenwell, J. Richard
Grimm, Jack
Hall, Dennis Jay
Hall, Mark A.
Harkness, Ruth
Heuvelmans, Bernard
Honey Island Swamp Monster
Horned Serpents
Huyghe, Patrick
Iliamna Lake Monster
Indonesian Coelacanths
International Society of Cryptozoology
Jersey Devil
Keating, Donald
King Cheetah
Kirk, John
Koffmann, Marie-Jeanne
Komodo Dragon
Krantz, Grover S.
Krumbiegel, Ingo
Lake Monsters
Lawndale Incident
LeBlond, Paul H.
Ley, Willy
Living Fossils
Loch Ness Monsters
Loofs-Wissowa, Helmut
"Lost World" of Vietnam
MacFarlane's Bear
Mackal, Roy P.
MacKinnon, John
Mangiacopra, Gary
Marked Hominid
McLeod, James
Meldrum, D. Jeffrey
Minnesota Iceman
Morgan, Robert W.
Mountain Gorilla
Mountain Nyala
Nandi Bear
Nguoi Rung
Norman, Scott T.
Old Yellow Top
Orang Pendek
Oudemans, Antoon Cornelis
Pangboche Hand
Panthera atrox
Patterson Film
Perez, Daniel
Porshnev, Boris F.
Pygmy Elephant
Pygmy Hippopotamus

Queensland Tiger
Raynal, Michel
Rebsamen, William M.
Roesch, Ben S.
Russell, W.M. "Gerald"
Saber-toothed Cats
Sanderson, Ivan T.
Schaffner, Ron
Sea Serpents
Short, Bobbie
Shuker, Karl P.N.
Shunka Warak'in
Skunk Ape
Slick, Thomas Baker
Taylor, Dan Scott
Tchernine, Odette
Thomas, Lars
Titmus, Robert
Tran Hong Viet
True Giant
Vietnam Cryptozoic and Rare Animals Research Center
Walsh, Dave
Wasson, Barbara
Wood, Forrest G.
Woodland Bison
Wright, Bruce S.

Zuiyo-maru Monster
Cryptozoology Museums and Exhibitions
Cryptozoology Periodicals
Cryptozoology Websites
On the Matter of Style
Texts Cited/Further Reading

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 28, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    An Interesting Summary, Needs New Edition

    Another reviewer complained about the biographies in this volume. If you are dealing with a speculative, controversial subject like cryptozoology, it helps to know about its participants. That said, this work is already dated. It would be good to have a new revised edition updating what has occurred in the last decade. I think the authors could have downplayed some of the wackier entries like thunderbirds and giant apes (how could we overlook 15 foot flying birds and 10+ foot hairy monsters?) and in favor of more coverage on plausible cryptids. The book also seemed to give more coverage to ape-like creatures and to neglect other mammals and birds. However, this is the cheapest book of its kind on B&N and could have been a blatant rip-off instead of a pretty good introduction to unknown animals. If you like the offbeat, this should be quite enjoyable.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 5, 2007

    Too many entries on people in the field, not enough on the creatures.

    I bought this book because of a passing interest in the subject. The entries on the creatures explored are set up alphabetically and are mostly informative, if somewhat brief. What ruined the books value to me was the entries on the people involved in this field of study. There are just too many of these entries and they are usually longer and more detailed than those on the beasts the title leads one to believe are examined. I'd say that 3/5 of the book is devoted to people. It should be titled 'CryptoZoologists A-Z'.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 7, 2013

    Great but needs revision.

    This is a great book but a revised edition is needed. Some of the creatures in this book such as the bodegezou are now known to exist and therefore no longer fall under the catagory of cryptids.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2014

    Please tell me

    How long is the samplel

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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