The Monster Hunter’s Handbook

Saturday, December 1st, 2007

The Monster Hunter’s Handbook presents itself as the compiled wisdom of the Heraclean Club, a renowned league of monster hunters.

It is divided into two sections, one on legendary monsters to hunt, and another on legendary weapons with which to hunt them.

I enjoyed the terms the author apparently coined for these two sections.

You may have heard of cryptozoology, the study of legendary creatures, like Big Foot and Nessie.

Thus, monster hunting is aggressive cryptozoology.

Unless you’re a war nerd, like me, you probably have not heard of hoplology though, the study of weapons and their use. (Hoplon was the ancient Greek term for shield, and hoplite the term for an armored warrior.)

Naturally, the study of legendary weapons, like Excalibur and the Spear of Longinus, is cryptohoplology.

(The image is from Howard Pyle’s The Story of King Arthur and His Knights.)

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