Hominology is an important subcategory of cryptozoology that deserves a moment of explanation. Russian researcher Dmitri Bayanov coined the word “hominology” around 1973, to denote those investigations that study humanity’s as yet undiscovered near-relatives, including Almas, Yeti, Bigfoot/Sasquatch, and other unknown hominoids. He further defined hominology as a “branch of primatology, called upon to bridge the gap between zoology and anthropology” in a 1973 letter to the London primatologist John Napier. His English paper on the subject was a major breakthrough contribution after decades of unpublicized Russian research and expeditions. The paper, “A Hominologist View from Moscow, USSR,” appeared in Northwest Anthropological Research Notes (Moscow, Idaho), vol. 11, no. 1, 1977.
In 1958, the Soviet Academy of Sciences created the Snowman Commission, and later a Relict Hominoid Research Seminar was begun at the Darwin Museum in Moscow. One of the Soviet Union’s first hominologists was Boris Porshnev, a contemporary of Odette Tchernine and Ivan T. Sanderson, who also studied unknown hominoids. Porshnev wrote the difficult-to-obtain late 1950s scientific monograph The Present State of the Question of Relict Hominoids. The U.S.S.R. allowed only 180 copies to be printed. While some hints of Porshnev’s new studies were becoming known in the West by 1960, his work was largely unknown and unavailable to the scientific community in Russia.
The collapse of the Soviet state has changed much, and hominologists have been able to circulate their work freely. For example, Bayanov has recently published two works on hominology: In the Footsteps of the Russian Snowman (1996) and America’s Bigfoot: Fact, Not Fiction—U.S. Evidence Verified in Russia (1997). During a 1997 international hominology conference held in Moscow, attended by North American Sasquatch research notables John Green and Grover Krantz, Bayanov called for the establishment of a Porshnev World Institute of Hominology to study the creatures’ role in the evolutionary process.
The Encyclopedia of Loch Monsters,Sasquatch, Chupacabras, and Other Authentic Mysteries of Nature
Written by Loren Coleman and Jerome Clark – Copyright 1999 Loren Coleman and Jerome Clark