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Sunday, 31 July 2011

"Russia's Loch Ness Monster"

Brosno dragon
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Brosno Dragon, also known as Brosnya, is the name given to a lake monster which is said to inhabit Lake Brosno, near Andreapol in West Russia. It is described as resembling a dragon or dinosaur, and is the subject of a number of regional legends, some which are said to date back to the 13th century. [1]


Rumors of a strange, giant creature living in Lake Brosno have existed for several centuries. One legend says that the lake monster scared to death the Tatar-Mongol army that headed for Novgorod in the 13th century. Batu Khan stopped the troops on the sides of Lake Brosno to rest. Horses were allowed to drink water from the lake. However, when the horses ventured down to the lake, a huge roaring creature emerged from the water and started devouring horses and soldiers. The Batu-khan troops were so terrified that they turned back, and Novgorod was saved. Old legends describe an "enormous mouth" devouring fishermen. Chronicles mention a "sand mountain" that appeared on the lake surface from time to time. According to another legend, some Varangians wanted to hide stolen treasure in the lake. When they approached the small island, a dragon came to the surface from the lake and swallowed the island up.

It was rumored in the 18th and 19th centuries that the giant creature emerged on the lake surface in the evening, but immediately submerged when people approached. It is said that during World War II the beast swallowed up a German airplane. Today, there are lots of witnesses who say they chanced to see Brosnya walking in the water. Locals say that it turns boats upside-down and has to do with disappearance of people

Many people treat the existence of Brosnya skeptically and still say that the creature may be a mutant beaver or a giant pike of 100-150 years. Others conjecture that groups of wild boars and elks cross the lake from time to time.

[emphasis added, and only the introduction to the various explanations-DD]

1.^ Vorotyntseva, Sofya (2004-01-20) Loch Ness Monster Has a Relative in Russian Province, Pravda

Rather than a mutant beaver explanation, I have heard that wild boars of unusually large size swimming in the water, as well as the typical swimming elk (moose) account for most modern sightings at this lake. These are the lake monster sightings that are like the ones from Loch Ness and elsewhere and cause people to think of Plesiosaurs and Brontosaurs. But they are not the origin of the large swallowing dragon.

To some extent, all bodies of water are said to suck down and drown people and animals and this is ordinarily understood as a sort of poetic mythological personification of the waters themselves. In this case, however, it becomes quite clear that what people were originally describing was a very large, very old and very evil-tempered Pike and pride in the notoriety of that pike (possibly the family of pikes even) made the locals brag and exaggerate their stotries of their monstrous pike until it could swallow up enemy warships sent against them, or Nazi planes. But the shape of the monstrously large fish on the old postcard is definietly a pike's head. Some reports of Lake Monsters from Scandinavia are also obviously such pikes, and a series of such reports occur across Canada but most prominently in the Mackenzie River system and around the Great Lakes. Some of them have been photographed and you can still always tell from the shape of the head and the conformation of the fins.

Best Wishes, Dale D.
Pike-also often at the bottom of "Out-of-Place-Crocodile" Reports.

1 comment:

  1. BTW, I have a correspondant that lives in Novgorod and he is my local informant as to all Cryptozoological matters in the area.


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