The Book of Werewolves (Dover Books on Anthropology and Folklore)
By Sabine Baring-Gould
1865. Baring-Gould states that upon finding the superstition of
werewolves so prevalent he decided to investigate the fascinating
history and habits of these mythical creatures. Contents: Lycanthropy
among the Ancients; The Werewolf in the North; Origin of the
Scandinavian Werewolf; Werewolf in the Middle Ages; A Chapter of
Horrors; Jean Grenier; Fork Lore Relating to Werewolves; Natural Causes
of Lycanthropy; Mythological Origin of the Werewolf Myth; The Marechal
De Rezt; A Galician Werewolf; Anomalous Case, The Human Hyaena; A
Sermon of Werewolves.
With the shocking histories of 10 famous cases, this classic blends
science, superstition, and fiction to tell the full story of the
werewolves among us. The first serious academic study of lycanthropy
and "blood-lust" written in English, this book draws upon a vast body
of observation, myth, and lore.
Long in the tooth, but still has bite!
Arguably the first definitive study of the topic, penned by the
eccentric clergyman best known for writing the hymn 'Onward Christian
Soldiers', this 1865 volume still beats most of the modern competition
paws down. Its age means some will find it a tough read, but for others
that will just enhance its charms. 'The Book of Werewolves' is still
impressive scholarship today, and it was this volume that first made
the careers of real-life monsters Gilles de Rais and Countess Bathory
familiar to English readers (though somewhat toned down for its
original Victorian audience). If you're serious about your
lycanthropes, then this belongs on your shelf right beside Charlotte
Otten's recent 'Lycanthropy Reader'.