Rather than a work of science, this richly illustrated volume offers fare for the imagination with its fascinatingly odd menagerie. Historical accounts of centaurs, unicorns, and lesser-known fantastical creatures provide abundant amusement. The book opens with a brief introduction in which the author lays out his purpose for writing the book and the methodology used in doing so. This is not a work of science, but rather a collection of accounts of the world's most curious creatures as they have appeared in writings by various authors throughout history. The opening chapters of the book examine humans and human-like creatures, including early men, wild men, and so-called "hairy men". The author also includes sections on giants and pygmies. From there, Ashton transitions to more mythical creatures, including centaurs, unicorns, and lamias. Throughout the book, which includes sections on more than 100 creatures, the author sprinkles in descriptions of real animals, including dolphins, scorpions, ants, whales, hornets, to name but a few, however more space is definitely devoted to the more fantastical creatures however.
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