Goat-Men and Satyrs

Posted by: Nick Redfern on August 9th, 2012

In an entertaining and informative new post, Dr. Karl Shuker digs into the strange world, legend, folklore and myth of the Satyr and the Goatman.

Not one to be missed if you’re a fan of fantastic and monstrous “things” from times long gone – and times, perhaps, not so long gone, too…

Nick Redfern About Nick Redfern
Punk music fan, Tennents Super and Carlsberg Special Brew beer fan, horror film fan, chocolate fan, like to wear black clothes, like to stay up late. Work as a writer.

2 Responses to “Goat-Men and Satyrs”

  1. Fhqwhgads responds:

    There’s some definite circular logic in the identification of satyrs and Neanderthals. Satyrs have some of the features of Neanderthals: “hairy body, upturned nose, prominent eye ridges, round head, strong neck …” — though how we can be sure Neanderthals were hairy I don’t know, since I don’t think any have shown up preserved in the bogs or tundra (like mammoths have). So the picture of the Neanderthal is derived from that of the satyr, and then it is noticed (with due surprise) that the satyr bears a striking resemblance to the Neanderthal. Why, they must be the same! And we all know that Neanderthals are after our women and are addicted to strong drink, don’t ya know.

    One of the reasons the existence of animal-men in folklore and mythology is poor evidence of their existence in the real world is that there is nothing more human than to imagine beings falling into the spaces between man and the other parts of creation. We don’t really need werewolves to imagine half man / half wolves, or men who transform into wolves or wolves that transform into men, for one example, to say nothing of centaurs and berserkers. We imagine mermen who are intermediate between men and fish, dryads and Ent-like beings to be intermediate between men and trees, and star people to be intermediate between humans and astronomical bodies. We invent personifications of death. In many cultures we think of the sky and earth as husband and wife, in some we consider the world to be made from the corpse of a giant. But not matter how widespread the sky-married-to-earth story is, all it REALLY tells us is that the story-tellers are human, not that these gigantic primordial humanoids really existed.

  2. CJMoseley responds:

    I’ve always wondered if there was a connection between the fauns/satyrs and the later woodwoses and Bigfoots. There are certainly some folkloric connections, such as their ability to fade into invisibility in trees, the forest panic ‘aura’ that seems to surround them and fascination with women.

    Interesting, but I suspect that this is more of a daimonic, genius locii effect than an actual physical being, as I have read reports of UK bigfoots (woodwoses) that appear far too close to habitation to be a relic hominid.

    One friend even told me of seeing a huge hairy man in his Stockport garden, which stepped away through the Garden’s hedge, without disturbing the branches and must have walked through the fence behind the hedge, which has much in common with the concept of the hamadryads and wood nymphs.

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