Prophet of the Kraken


Manage episode 239955645 series 123105
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On this episode of Expanded Perspectives the guys start the show off talking about Kyle’s birthday and Cam’s run in with food poisoning. Then they get into some news and Cam talks about Pierre Denys de Montfort, the Kraken, Great White sharks, Sea Serpents, the San Clemente Sea Monster and other watery beasts!

In 1820 a man died of starvation in a cold Parisian gutter. He was given a pauper’s burial and the few who attended did so only to snicker at the feeble-minded fool that believed in sea monsters. The man was the French zoologist Pierre Denys de Montfort. Had he lived until 1857 he would have seen his ‘wild stories’ vindicated. Pierre Denys de Montfort was a malacologist, an expert in mollusks. He was also a scientific heretic, for he dared to research something that the high priests of science deemed to be an old wives’ tale, giant cephalopods.

He wrote an addendum for Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon’s Histoire naturelle générale et particulière. Comte de Buffon had been the director of Jardin des Plantes and this was a feather in the young naturalist’s cap. Suites a Buffon was devoted to mollusks. During this time, he investigated the origins of ambergris (the indigestible beaks and claws of cephalopods vomited up by sperm whales like gigantic owl pellets) and became interested in the idea of huge cephalopods. He interviewed American whalers who had settled in France about the evidence for such creatures.

One such man, Ben Johnson, told of a monstrous tentacle found in the mouth of a sperm whale they had killed. The tentacle was 35 feet long and had been severed at both ends, De Montfort reckoned another 10-20 feet of it had been lost. It was as thick as a mast with suckers the size of hats. Another man, Reynolds, told of seeing what he thought was a red sea serpent laying next to a whale they had killed. It was discovered to be a massive tentacle 45 feet long with suckers as large as plates.

At the time no one believed him. We now know that the Colossal Squid is a very real creature. Therfore, Pierre Denys de Montfort was a prophet! All of this and more on this installment of Expanded Perspectives!

Show Notes:


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Songs Used:

  • Pretty Lights vs. Led Zeppelin
  • Empty Station
  • New Moon Same Dark
  • Vibe Vendetta

288 episodes