Oudemans, Antoon Cornelis

Dutch zoologist Antoon Cornelis Oudemans (1858–1943) originally specialized in insects and worms as the director of the Royal Zoological and Botanical Gardens at the Hague, but during the late 1870s he became fascinated with sea serpents. Beginning in 1881 he wrote numerous articles on the subject, and in 1892 he published The Great Sea Serpents, based on his investigation of 187 sea serpent sightings. Oudemans concluded that sea serpents were actually some type of seal, but interestingly, before reaching this conclusion he thought that sea serpents might be the descendants of prehistoric whales, which is the view currently held by many cryptozoologists today. In either case, Oudemans’s ideas were rejected by most of his peers. In 1895 he quit his position with the zoological gardens and became a university biology teacher, then began writing about extinct birds. However, he returned to his interest in sea serpents, as evidenced by the fact that at the time of his death, he was planning to write another book on these elusive creatures.


  • Lake Monsters


The Greenhaven Encyclopedia of Paranormal Phenomena – written by Patricia D. Netzley © 2006 Gale, a part of Cengage Learning

Related Articles

Mangiacopra, Gary

Gary Mangiacopra, a New Englander with a master’s degree in biology, has been interested in doing archival cryptozoological investigations since he was a teen. Today…