Many legends are born of historical fact, and become mythologized over time. Never was this brought to light as clearly as in the discovered reality behind the epic poems of Homer. His stories of the Trojan War and the adventures of Odysseus as collected in his “The Iliad” and “The Odyssey” were originally assumed to be pure fiction until an amateur archeologist in the late 19th century, Heinrich Schliemann, discovered that its events and places were real. Many monsters were based on mutations, such as the stories of the werewolf may have gotten their origin from sightings of the sufferers of hypertrichosis. Who knows which stories of legend may turn out to have a basis in truth next?
2014 actually was a pretty big year for legends proving to have some reality context. The website ancient-origins.net put together a list of 10 stories that all broke this year that are certainly worthy of the attention of followers of the weird. Like how about a possible explanation for mermaids? Sirenomelia, a rare congenital condition that causes the lower limbs to be fused, turns out to be a likely suspect for the roots of the mythological creature. Or how about the discovery of the remains of the Hell Hound of Suffolk, a 200 lb dog that broke into a church and killed parishioners before running off into legend? Maybe not just legend, as it turns out. Did you know the Icelandic government this year declared that a giant sea serpent called Lagarfljotsormurinn that lives there is real? Ok, I’m gonna take that one with a grain of salt, but I’ve still got my fingers crossed that one bears out.
All these and more are discussed on the site in question. This serves as a great reminder to not dismiss out of hand the mysterious, mythological, or cryptozoological. Maybe this time next year we’ll be calling 2015, “The Year we Found Sasquatch”. We can only hope.