The Beast of Gévaudan is the name associated with a man-eating animal or animals that terrorized the former province of Gévaudan in south-central France between 1764 and 1767. The Beast ravaged the rural region, where as many as 300 men, women, & children were attacked. While many believed it to be a wolf, there are some that suggest that the Beast may have been something else. There were a few occasions where the people of Gévaudan were able to shoot the Beast, with the belief that they had killed it, but it never stayed down for long.
Historians, scientists, and conspiracy theorists have all proposed different theories about what the Beast was, including an extinct prehistoric creature like the Dire Wolf, a striped hyena, and an armored war dog. The most popular theory, and what the people of Gévaudan believed, was that the Beast was a werewolf or pack of werewolves. Some claimed that the Beast could walk on its hind feet, had amazing leaping ability and its hide could repel bullets. When the Beast was finally killed, the rumor was that it had been shot with a silver bullet.
What ravaged that quaint area? Was it a pack of wolves, or something more supernatural? Join us on episode 137 to hear more about the Beast of Gévaudan!
Sources: history.com/news/beast-gevaudan-france-theories, smithsonianmag.com/history/beast-gevaudan-terrorized-france-countryside-180963820/, historytoday.com/archive/sherlock-holmes-and-beast-gevaudan, nationalgeographic.co.uk/history-and-civilisation/2021/10/did-a-werewolf-really-terrorise-france-in-the-1700s,