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The Piasa Bird legend seems sort of similar to the legends of Perytons in Europe. Both creatures were large flying monsters that attacked and ate men. Both creatures had horns like deer. Both creatures were reported to be largely impervious to weapons.
It kind of makes me wonder if these legends might have been based on real creatures.
"Here is approximately The shape of these monsters, As we have faithfully Copied It." Very well done, Father Marquette. Your original text (in dusty French) is in "Discovery and Exploration of the Mississippi Valley: With the Original Narratives of Marquette", etc by John Gilmary Shea - see Google Book search (it's free fulltext); 249-250. But has there been a reproduction of the figures, anywhere? They might be on the maps facing p108 and p154 in: "Travels and Explorations of the Jesuit Missionaries in New France" vol. LIX. Dysmorodrepanis 02:37, 16 August 2007 (UTC)
In the book How To Raise And Keep A Dragon, it features the Piasa as a type of dragon, this guy made up that it is a dragon or what, because a google search only brings me to the referance in that book.
Invention based on Russel's tale, which was either an outright hoax or described the painting after Anglos had messed around with it and added wings. I have added a pictore of "underwater panther" artwork; the original "Piasa" was probably more similar to that (apart from the shape of the horns, the colors and some other minor detail it is a near-perfect match). Dysmorodrepanis (talk) 15:06, 19 October 2010 (UTC)