Month: August 2015

Monster Monday: The Achlis!

Achlis, © 2015 Liz Vitale

Achlis, © 2015 Liz Vitale

One of many odd creatures listed in Roman mythology by Pliny the Elder in the 1st century BC, the  Achlis looked somewhat like an elk, although it had some strange traits. Sometimes(not on this example) an Achlis had an upper lip that was so large that the animal had to graze backwards in order to keep its lip from falling over its mouth. Its back legs also had no joints.

Okay, okay, here it is with the doofy upper lip:

AChlis lip  8_27_ 2015

Thunder Lizard Thursday: Alamosaurus!

Alamosaurus,© 2015 Liz Vitale

Alamosaurus,© 2015 Liz Vitale

Remember the Alamosaurus!! Why? Because recent analysis has shown that it may have been an even bigger dinosaur than originally estimated, possibly closer in size to its more famous South American cousin, one of the largest known dinosaurs,Argentinosaurus. In fact, it looks as if some of the “type fossils” used to reconstruct Alamosaurus may have come from adolescents rather than full-grown adults, meaning that this titanosaur may well have attained lengths of over 60 feet from head to tail and weights in excess of 70 or 80 tons.

Alamosaurus was a gigantic titanosaur with relatively long limbs. It is one of the few titanosaurs known to have lived in late Cretaceous North America. Contrary to popular belief, Alamosaurus is not named after the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas, or the battle that was fought there. The  original specimen was discovered in New Mexico and the name Alamosaurus comes from Ojo Alamo, the geologic formation in which it was found.

Monster Monday: The Adar Llwch Gwin!

The Adar Llwch Gwin,© 2015 Liz Vitale

The Adar Llwch Gwin,© 2015 Liz Vitale

From Wales we have the Adar Llwch Gwin. They were similar to griffins, and the one I drew I fashioned after one in an old painting. They were given to a warrior named Drudwas ap Tryffin by his fairy wife. The name derives from the Welsh words llwch (“dust”) and gwin (“wine”). These birds were said to understand human speech and to obey whatever command was given to them by their master.

Monster Monday: The Abath!

Abath, © 2015 Liz Vitale

Abath, © 2015 Liz Vitale

The Abath is a puzzling thing. It is a creature similar to the  European Unicorn that was first found in documents dating around the 16th century. European travelers brought back reports of these creatures from the Malay Peninsula.
Indicated as female, the Abath has a single long horn growing from its forehead and seems to be very equine-like in composition. So is it considered a Unicorn?
It is generally believed that the real-life animal that inspired its creation was simply a half-glimpsed Javan or Sumatran Rhino.
An Abath’s horn, like its Unicorn counterpart, is also thought to have magical properties.