Tales of History and Imagination

Eccentric tales from History by Simone Whitlow

Five: The Beast of Gevaudan

January 20th, 2021

Today’s tale is set in the former province of Gevaudan in South-Central France. The years between 1764 and 1767, following the bloody, and costly Seven Years War – a Proto World War if ever there was one – which had left deep scars in the psyche of many a European nation – France included- and left many a monarch broke in its’ wake.

An isolated, rugged, rural spot – The terrain rough and mountainous – it is far too rocky to grow much by way of crops. The locals eke out a living in the hills, tending to livestock. From youth, the locals worked alone, out in the elements – constantly on the lookout for wild predators on the lookout for a free meal. Gevaudan is also surrounded by a vast forest; a dangerous and lawless place full of wolves, lurking outlaws, footpads and highwayman. It really is the kind of place you could imagine in the most vicious Grimm Brothers tales.

It’s against this backdrop that La Bete du Gevaudan - the beast of Gevaudan - came roaring into the consciousness of the French.

This week’s episode was originally published October 30th 2019, but has been revamped and rereleased on the blog site today.

You can read the episode here.

 

If you enjoy this episode please leave me a like and follow my page. Share the channel with just one person you know would like it. I post a new episode every fortnight, Wednesday night New Zealand time.

Tales of History and Imagination are on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and run a weekly Wordpress Blog.

 

 

About the Author: Simone Whitlow is a songwriter and musician, formerly with Auckland rock band Ishtar. She is an academic with degrees in history, education and project management. A small, squeaky wheel in a big corporate machine, Simone is a former Mastermind contestant. Transgender, she uses she/her pronouns. Simone speaks no French and apologizes for any mangled pronunciations.

 

Four: The Incident on Eilean Mor

January 6th, 2021

The Flannan Isles, sometimes referred to as the 7 Hunters, are a tiny group of islands on the outside of the Outer Hebrides – a string of islands in the North of Scotland. Uninhabited, hilly and rocky, covered only by grass … people generally had little to do with these islands. For centuries Shepherds would use the islands to store sheep away from poachers. They themselves never stayed overnight – folklore warned of malevolent spirits on the islands. The lighthouse keepers were another case entirely. 

What happened to the lighthouse keepers of Eilean Mor?

This week we go way back to the early days of the blog. Written in January 2019, directly to the Facebook page, this is the second ever Tale of History and Imagination.

You can read the episode here.

 

If you enjoyed this episode please leave us a like, follow the page. Please help the channel grow by sharing with just one person. I post a new episode every fortnight, Wednesday night New Zealand time.

Tales of History and Imagination are on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and run a weekly Wordpress Blog.

 

About the Author: Simone Whitlow is a musician, songwriter, academic and former Mastermind contestant from New Zealand. Transgender, she uses she/her pronouns. Simone is an avid collector of strange tales from history and other ephemera.

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