In humanity’s oldest surviving work of literature, The Epic of Gilgamesh, the goddess of sex and violence transforms her lover into a wolf. This ancient narrative suggests that the concept of the werewolf has been intertwined with human culture since time immemorial.
Join us on a journey into the historical roots of the werewolf, which culminated in the infamous werewolf trials and executions during the Middle Ages. In France alone, an astonishing 30,000 individuals faced accusations of being werewolves, with thousands meeting gruesome fates, either burned alive at the stake or subjected to hanging.
This dark chapter in history saw a chilling blend of tragic misjudgment and genuine malevolence. While many of those accused of lycanthropy were innocent peasants, some were indeed sinister individuals whose actions justified the fears of a populace struggling to comprehend the concepts of mass murder and sexual sadism, often believing these crimes to be possible only by one in league with the devil.
Today we bring you macabre and morbid tales of lycanthropy through the ages, right up to the twentieth century.
We’re going to be bringing you more tales of werewolf true-crime and mayhem all of October, right up to Halloween. So happy spooky season everyone!!! Howwwwlllll!!
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Creepy Amusement Park theme by Brandon Fiechter and Derek Fiechter, used by permission and with many thanks.
Werewolves in Western Culture: A Lycanthropy Reader edited by Charlotte F. Otten
Of Wolves and Men by Barry Lopez
The Werewolf Book: The Encyclopedia of Shape-Shifting Humans by Brad Steiger
The Werewolf Handbook: An Essential Guide to Werewolves by Barrons Educational