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Historian Documents Vikings vs Bigfoot?

Posted by: Guy Edwards on July 28th, 2013

Bigfoot Lunch Club

(Did the Vikings encounter Bigfoot in battle?)

“Buliwyf’s band establishes that the Wendol are humanoid cannibals who appear as, live like, and identify with bears.” – Wikipedia on Michael Crichton’s description of the cryptids in The 13th Warrior

Is it possible that a 10th century historian could have documented a fierce battle between Vikings and Bigfoot? Ahmad ibn Fadlan was an Arab ambassador that was captured by Vikings during a diplomatic mission, the Vikings allowed him to chronicle their adventures. He called them men of the north and his depiction of a Viking ship burial is often references and considered accurate. Other aspects of his adventures border on the fantastic including a battle with Mist Monsters, or as the Vikings called them the Wendol.

Speculation on the Wendol is all over the place, from pure fiction to the last remaining Neanderthals. Michael Crichton’s, author of Jurassic Park and Westworld, depicts the Wendol in his screenplay, The 13th Warrior, as humanoid cannibals who appear as, live like, and identify with bears. For Doc Vega of UFODigest.com, the Wendol may be Bigfoot. Doc Vega has written a five-part series on the topic with commentary that includes references to Dr. Jeff Meldrum, Grover Krantz and heavily on Lloyd Pye.

Read a short excerpt of Doc Vegas 5-part essay suggesting Vikings fought with Bigfoot at Bigfoot Lunch Club your source for Bigfoot News.

Guy Edwards About Guy Edwards
Psychology reduces to biology, all biology to chemistry, chemistry to physics, and finally physics to mathematical logic.


17 Responses to “Historian Documents Vikings vs Bigfoot?”

  1. Scopi responds:

    You do realize that ibn Fadlan wrote nothing about the “Wendol,” right? The real ibn Fadlan witnessed what we’d call Viking funeral in the 10th century, and all the rest was invented by Michael Crichton for his novel. I know that the standards of evidence Bigfooters use are low, but it’s something else if they now they just take recent fiction novels and pretend they’re historical records.

  2. Robert_Dutch responds:

    Uh… Ahmad ibn Fadlan, though he did exist, described no such thing. Michael Crichton made the Norsemens encounter with the ‘Wendol’ up for his book ‘Eaters of the dead’. It’s a clever reinvention of ‘Beowulf’, with humanoid creatures (possibly neanderthals) being the fictional ‘originals’ of the monster Grendel. When he reworked his novel into a screenplay for ‘The 13th warrior’ he replaced the humanoids with a primitive tribe of humans. What’s next? A serious investigation into the rumours about an island near the coast of Costa Rica where a billionaire apparently attempted to create a dinosaur themepark?

  3. shill responds:

    The premise of these pieces is so awful, I question why they are even brought to our attention it the first place. How about some decent evidence before proposing such a story?

    This is why the field of cryptozoology is in the gutter — terrible research, tons of hoaxes, ridiculous ideas and speculation without evidence.

  4. Guy Edwards responds:

    These are great comments so far. First I want to say the title of the post does end with a question mark. So despite my interest, even I question the piecing together of these multiple sources.

    I appreciate the fact-check on ibn Fadlan etc. I’m assuming those that left comments have read the whole article, or even the opening paragraphs where I reference Michael Crichton’s screenplay as the definition for Wendol and not ibn Fadlan. So kudos goes to Scopi and Robert_dutch for reinforcing my second paragraph.

    Sharon Hill, Bigfoot is a topic of interest and discussions of Bigfoot or cryptozoology does not have to fall into the realm of science. This is a blog not a scientific journal. I love the culture surrounding cryptozoology as much as the topic itself. While I agree there could be better research and processes in cryptozoology, It seems uncharacteristic of you to assume cryptozoology is in the gutter. I completely disagree, the field is doing much better thanks to people like you, Brian Dunning and Dr. Todd Disotell.

    Thanks for all your comments.

  5. volmar responds:

    Shakespeare wrote about that as well: Much Ado About Nothing. This is the silliest Bigfoot theory ever.

  6. alan borky responds:

    “This is why the field of cryptozoology is in the gutter — terrible research, tons of hoaxes, ridiculous ideas and speculation without evidence.”

    Unlike particle physics where they record faster than light neutrinos and toss the data away as part wonky plug part cosmic particle storm part acceptable margins of error.

    But when a time traveller’s found wand’ring round the Large Hardon Collider while hackers’re breaking into it at will and disgruntled workers performing acts of vandalism it’s “Who gives a rat’s arse we found the Higgs!”

    Even that when it’s pointed out the particle discovered only accounts for an unstable universe capable of losing its seeming solidity at a moment’s notice “Who gives a rat’s we found the Higgs!”

    Alas if only cryptozoology had access to the meagrest fraction of the financial backing and even the tiniest twidge of particle physics’ sheer bloody audacity what things it might achieve…

  7. NMRNG responds:

    Help me understand what is going on here. Some crackpot named Doc Vega wrote a series of essays about the connection between vikings, UFOs and bigfoot (I think it’s fair to call anyone suggesting a connection between sasquatches and UFOs [or Santa Claus too for that matter] a crackpot). These essays apparently are based almost exclusively on what appears to be a reasonably detailed high school book report on the Michael Crichton novel Eaters of the Dead or perhaps the author even read that novel himself. However, this Doc Vega person has concluded that he will treat that novel as a non-fiction source rather than as one that has a purely fictionalized story based very loosely upon an actual 10th century adventurer’s life. So, based on this treatment, are we now going to claim as fact a teenage boy developed super-human strength as well as the ability to cast sticky web ropes from his wrists, after he was bitten by a radioactive spider?

    This is crap, pure and utter crap. It has no basis of any sort in history or science. As others have noted above, publishing unsupported nonsense under the guise of reality has a negative impact on cryptozoology. Why is it that some fans of cryptozoology are incapable of understanding that the most crucial aspect of this field isn’t creativity or imagination, but credibility?

    Guy Edwards, you ought to be ashamed of yourself for posting that garbage here. There’s enough fiction already coming into play in the study of sasquatch without publishing essays in which purely fictional stories are treated as true non-fiction primary sources.

  8. Guy Edwards responds:

    NMRNG, thanks for your comment. I’m always amazed when people feel so protective over the credibility of cryptozoology. There is nothing to protect, by its nature it will always be under more scrutiny than other endeavors. Even the Coelacanth can’t change that.

    Also, people who assume that cryptozoology can be tarnished so easily have a low opinion of other humans. Almost every one I meet has an interest in the undiscovered, unseen and have a wait-and-see approach. The interest is out there and that is what I celebrate on my posts.

    People who assume others can’t decide for themselves if a reinterpreted Michael Crichton script is fiction or genuine history also have a low opinion of humans. NMRNG, do you think you are the only one clever enough to form their own opinion? NO. The world is full of smart people.

    I assume people are discerning, intelligent and can form their own opinions. So, I will continue to post about the history, the science, AND the fiction of Bigfoot and trust the audience is intelligent. Whether it is a movie coming out or reinterpreted Michael Crichton script.

    Thanks again for your comment, but I’m proud of the work that goes into my posts and I do try and give them context, the headline has a question mark, and the first quote is from Michael Crichton’s screenplay. When Eduardo Sánchez comes out with the fictional “Exists” I will probably post about that too.

  9. John Kirk responds:

    You can see this work of fiction come together in quite superb fashion in the film 13th Warrior starring Antonio Banderas as Ahmad ibn Fahdlan.

    It was shot in B.C. So it is real sasquatch country and an enjoyable visual depiction of Crichton’s book.

    I do wish that people would stop writing treatises that can’t possibly be true and try and posit them as fact. Yes, there is room for entertainment in cryptozoology as well as science, but to write a seemingly scholarly story on an event that never happened is just so deplorable.

  10. NMRNG responds:

    Guy, it appears that you do not have an audience for your fiction-posing-as-genuinely-possible reality. Did you even read any of the other comments here? If you are going to assume that people are intelligent, why do you then post something that would not appeal to any intelligent person? What’s next, posting something about a caged death match between Nessie and Bigfoot?

    Maybe go try Rick Dyer’s website? His fans will believe anything and most certainly are easily amused.

  11. Guy Edwards responds:

    NMRNG, I appreciate your passion for your total aversion to my post. I accept not every post is going to be a home run with every reader. I hedge my bets by providing diversity and a broad range Bigfoot-related topics.

    I do disagree with you regarding if there is an audience for this post. You can go to http://www.facebook.com/BigfootLunchClub and see how “my audience” responded; 110 Likes and 64 people re-shared it with their Facebook friends, this translated to reaching over 5000 people in two days and providing a lion’s share of the visitors to the post. The Facebook comments are quite active and astute; some suggesting/joking the theory is more suited for a bad SyFy movie.

    Thanks again for your comments, if you do end up liking one of my future posts, I hope you will let me know with equal passion.

    P.S. The Rick Dyer comment was a low blow :) I think I would have preferred something disparaging about my mother (and I LOVE my mom).

  12. HulkSmashNow responds:

    The screenplay of “The 13th Warrior” was written by John McTiernan
    William Wisher, Jr., and Warren Lewis, based on the novel “Eaters of the Dead” by Michael Crichton. The Wendol in the novel were relect Neanderthals. Geez, you’d think you could’ve at least read the book or watched the credits of the movie it was based on!

  13. Scopi responds:

    Yes Mr. Edwards, I read the entire “Doc Vega” article, weeks ago. I was wondering how long it was going to take the Bigfoot community to find it, and whether anyone in that community would point out . Since you invited a paragraph by paragraph analysis, I’ll do so.

    “Historian Documents Viking vs. Bigfoot”

    I invoke Betteridge’s law.

    “Did the Vikings encountered Bigfoot in Battle?”

    The capitalization suggests this is another headline, I guess. Seems a little lazy to have two headlines, especially with the obvious grammatical error in this one. Betteridge’s law applies here too.

    “‘Buliwyf’s band establishes that the Wendol are humanoid cannibals who appear as, live like, and identify with bears.’ – Wikipedia on Michael Crichton’s description of the cryptids in The 13th Warrior”

    Has nothing to do with ibn Fadlan. One paragraph in, and already off topic.

    “Is it possible that a 10th century historian could have documented a fierce battle between Vikings and Bigfoot? Ahmad ibn Fadlan was an Arab ambassador that was captured by Vikings during a diplomatic mission, the Vikings allowed him to chronicle their adventures. ”

    All incorrect. ibn Fadlan was sent as a Muslim ambassador to the Bulgars, where he witnessed the funeral of a chief of a people he called the Rus. Today we’d call them Vikings. Everything beyond these simple facts is pure fiction (invented by Crichton), and not worthy to be discussed as if it’s history.

    “He called them men of the north and his depiction of a Viking ship burial is often references and considered accurate.”

    The only fact in this whole paragraph, but buried between descriptions of complete fiction.

    “Other aspects of his adventures border on the fantastic including a battle with Mist Monsters, or as the Vikings called them the Wendol.”

    There are no other aspects to ibn Fadlan’s “adventures”! He saw a Viking funeral, complained they washed too often, and that’s the entirety of his interactions with the Rus.

    “Speculation on the Wendol is all over the place, from pure fiction to the last remaining Neanderthals.”

    Other than “Doc Vega,” no one “speculates” that the “Wendol” are anything other than Crichton trying to come up with a word that sounded like Grendel but also kind of Viking-ee. It is a pure invention of Crichton’s, and just to be clear, not in ibn Fadlan’s writing.

    “Michael Crichton’s, author of Jurassic Park and Westworld, depicts the Wendol in his screenplay, The 13th Warrior, as humanoid cannibals who appear as, live like, and identify with bears.”

    Crichton didn’t depict the Wendol, he invented them. A good writer should have made that clear.

    “For Doc Vega of UFODigest.com, the Wendol may be Bigfoot. Doc Vega has written a five-part series on the topic with commentary that includes references to Dr. Jeff Meldrum, Grover Krantz and heavily on Lloyd Pye.”

    Doc Vega is either delusional, or he was counting on his audience being too lazy to bother to check the most basic facts. I suspect he’s the former, but Mr. Edwards, what’s your excuse?

  14. Guy Edwards responds:

    Scopi I appreciate your semantics. You are absolutely correct, Betteridge’s law completely applies to the headline.

    FYI, It’s not two titles, one is a caption for the illustration (unfortunately you’re right about the poor grammar. I made the correction. Thanks).

    My first paragraph is not off topic, it’s a quote to establish a theme. It clearly indicates that the Wendol are described in a fictional story by Michael Crichton.

    If you think this was my theory or if I subscribed to it you are not the careful reader you pretend to be. I’m merely presenting it and added the Michael Crichton stuff to give it more context (or more doubt) than Doc Vegas did.

    If you thought this was being presented as true history or assumed anybody else would, you either don’t give people enough credit and probably think you are only one capable of discerning truth from fiction.

    Thanks again for the comment.

  15. NMRNG responds:

    Good points Scopi.

    Guy, I think you need to admit that posting your pretending-fiction-is-fact story here was not appreciated and was a mistake. Your continued attempts to defend that story sound kind of like a kid who got caught red-handed doing something he wasn’t supposed to do, but he continues to deny that he’s to blame. People make mistakes and have errors in judgment all of the time – it’s a lot worse to continue to defend a mistake without justification than just to admit error.

  16. Guy Edwards responds:

    Okay NMRNG, I’ll bite once again. I don’t think there is anything to defend. I thought Doc Vega and Michael Crichton wrote some interesting stuff so I decided to share it and let readers decide if it was interesting. Now, Doc Vega posted his stuff on UFODigest.com, I, personally, am not a big fan of aliens, UFO’s or his references to Lloyd Pye, but I don’t have to agree with something to find it interesting.

    Besides, do you really think anybody interpreted the post as being presented as fact without room for doubt? Phrases like, “Speculation on the Wendol is all over the place, from pure fiction to the last remaining Neanderthals,” and “For Doc Vega of UFODigest.com, the Wendol may be Bigfoot,” leave quite a bit room for doubt.

    I responded to your comments, because I thought you were interested in understanding my intentions for sharing the post and I was trying to be courteous, but when you characterize my comments as “defensive” this could indicate that your comments were meant to attack. I hope that is not the case, because I really appreciated your comments and assumed you had better intentions.

  17. NMRNG responds:

    Guy, my participation on this site is first, to learn about cryptids and cryptid sightings because cryptozooloogy interests me and has since I was a boy, and second, to participate in the promotion of sharing of credible information about cryptozoology. I comment negatively when I see something that is not credible. I believe that the excessive quantity of hoaxers and others who believe in the ridiculous has a very significant and negative impact on how the public views cryptozoology. The greater the public perception that the study of cryptids is for quacks and fools, the greater the reluctance will be for reasonable, respectable people to come forth and admit they had a sighting. Credibility is essential in the study of cryptids. Posting about this viking-bigfoot article does not promote credibility in the belief and study of sasquatch, and it was not even entertaining, to me (and I say that having both read Crichton’s book and seen the Antonio Banderas movie) or apparently to anyone else who posted in this thread.

    Maybe what this site needs is separate sections for Cryptid Fiction/Entertainment and one for Cryptid Hoaxes Exposed.



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