“The core of the book is about dragons: Western, Chinese, and Japanese, although it also covers the Sea-serpent, the Unicorn, and the Chinese Phoenix. Gould hypothesized that the dragon was based on an unknown, very rare animal, a huge reptile with wings, which became extinct in historical times. He also concluded that persistent sea-serpent sightings were also due to an undiscovered surviving prehistoric marine animal. He drew on the then-emerging body of fossil evidence for prehistoric megafauna, from flying lizards to whale-sized aquatic dinosaurs.
In context the proposal was not all that outrageous. Darwin had 25 years earlier proposed that humans are part of a huge web of biological relationships over vast realms of time and space. So what other paradigms were about to be shattered?
Gould leads off with a discussion of some other ‘earth mysteries:’ the world-wide flood myth, cultural diffusion, and Atlantis; readers looking for the cryptozoology will want to skip forward to Chapter VI. Extensive illustrations, translations from rare documents, and historical accounts from newspaper articles, make this a must-have book for anyone interested in this subject. ” (Quote from sacred-texts.com)
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