Francette Vigneron & Laurent Miny
La Bête du Gévaudan (The Beast of Gévaudan)
(Click on picture to enlarge it)
Gévaudan no longer exists.
It disappeared during the French Revolution when the present departements were created.. Gévaudan was a province under the Ancien Régime which occupied nearly all of what is now Lozère, the southern part of Haute-Loire and a small section of Cantal.
At the time when the man-eating 'Beast' was beginning to be the topic on everybody's lips, Louis XV, King of France, was 54 years old. For four years, from 1764 to 1767, an unidentified animal preyed on the population of Gévaudan; its victims numbered more than a hundred, many of whom were women and children..
What exactly was this creature? Some people think the perpetrator of these attacks can only have been a wolf . However, this is a theory which is widely contested..
The atrocities of the Beast of Gévaudan became a matter of state importance in the 18th century and to this day they continue to haunt the minds and divide the opinions of the thousands of addicts worldwide seeking to solve the mystery of its identity.
Thanks to Malcolm Mc Donald for the translation