After much blood had been spilled, the Beast of the Gevaudan has and will certainly spill a lot of ink. More than 1500 writings have been listed on the issue since 1767.
The documents at this time
One can find most of them in public records and libraries. All of them are not known, especially those, if they exist, belonging to private records. Maybe they will, one day, increase our understanding of this news item out of the common. They can be seen under two formats:
Orders – Circular letters - posters – press coverage (gazette de France and courrier d'Avignon in particular)
Gravures - Poems, laments – Summoning of the bishop of Mende)
Bounties given to hunters.
The writings since the death of the Beast
We cannot quote them all because the Beast has aroused a lot of passion and therefore lots of books and articles have been published after its death. Some are historic studies, others scientific studies, novels, plays, comic books… These numerous works, with broaden content, often discomfit people who discover this story. To make sure we are clear and concise, we will only mention the main books (by chronological order) and not the press coverage.
Many authors have embarked on the more or less romanticized story of the Beast of Gévaudan in comics.
2005- Jean Louis PESCH, famous comic book author (Sylvain and Sylvette) does a superb job by making his Bête du Gévaudan. There are very realistic drawings and a story followed as closely as possible. Do not miss !
2022-Sylvain Runberg and Jean-Charles Poupard:Les griffes du Gévaudan, (The claws of Gevaudan) A mysterious and terrifying investigation at the time of the Bestia.
Those who wrote novels
Novels are welcome but must be reported as such. History cannot be distorted! In our opinion, the reader must be informed upfront that what he is about to read is a fiction. The novels on the Beast have contributed to create a legend, fuzziness on this case.
In particular, the three following books:
1858-Élie Berthet: «La bête du Gévaudan». He publishes the first novel on the case. His Bête du Gévaudan achieved immediate success.
1936-Abel Chevalley: « La bête du Gévaudan». First book to allocate to Antoine Chastel the title of zoo keeper.
1946 -Henri Pourrat: «Histoire fidèle de la Bête du Gévaudan» (Faithful story of the Beast of Gévaudan). The famous novelist is taking up the argument of Chevalley about Antoine Chastel. One finds well portrayed characters: Antoine Chastel , the son of Jean, has gone to Africa and was captured by the « barbaresques ». He would have been trained into a zookeeper, would have been emasculated to make him a harem keeper (Guy Crouzet has shown in his book he had had 6 children). This legendis not supportedby any historical fact but has been taken up by a lot of authors!
Other novels on the Beast are regularly written, proving the commercial interest of some people. Some of the most recent:
2004-Jean-Paul Malaval: « Le carnaval des loups » (the wolf carnival)
A lot of the above-mentioned books are not available anymore. Some have been republished. One can find some of them on the second-hand market. Below you will find a list, certainly incomplete, still available to their publisher:
1901 -L'abbé François Fabre de Saugues : « la Bête du Gévaudan en Auvergne ». (The beast of Gévaudan in Auvergne) He mentions new documents discovered in particular in Clermont-Ferrand.
1930 -L'abbé François Fabrewrote another publication « La bête du Gévaudan ». Very beautiful book more complete than the first, illustrated in color.
1962 -Mme Aribaud-Farrerewrites a small booklet « La bête du Gévaudan identifiée » (The beast of Gévaudan identified) published in Béziers. For her, he was a sadistic madman.
1985-Jean-Jacques Barloy: « Les survivants de l'ombre » (The survivors of the shadows) where the case of the beast of Gévaudan is submitted to the computer.
1985-Guy Crouzet: « Quand sonnait le glas au pays de la bête » (When the death knell sounded in the land of the beast). A very serious, well-documented study. The author has taken all the historical documents from their sources and even discovered new ones. In particular, he made the family tree of the Chastels there.
1987-Félix Buffières: « La bête du Gévaudan» (The Beast of Gévaudan) with numerous illustrations.
1988-Raymond Francis Dubois: «La Bête du Gévaudan» (The Beast of Gevaudan). He is an armored war dog who accomplishes his deeds on behalf of a local lord.
1990-Serge Colin : « Autour de la bête du Gévaudan » (Around the beast of Gévaudan). The author places the history of the beast in its local and national historical context. Very serious historically!
1992-Michel Louis: «La Bête du Gévaudan l'innocence des loups» (The Beast of Gévaudan the innocence of wolves). He is also a wolf / armored dog hybrid, and acting under the orders of a nobleman with the complicity of the Chastels. (Reissued in 1997, 2000)
1992-Guy Crouzet writes "Requiem en Gévaudan" which takes up with some new discoveries, the work of 1985.
1993 -Alex Marques, for him, "The Beast which ate the world" becomes a glutton (lost in Gévaudan since prehistoric times).
1995 -Pierre Cubizolles: « Loups garous en Gévaudan le martyre des innocents » (Werewolves in Gévaudan the martyrdom of the innocents) - Edition Watel Brioude.
1999 -François FabreReissue of his book "The beast of Gévaudan in Auvergne" Completed by Jean Richard: one of the "best seller" on the subject!
2001 -Laurent Fournier: « La petite histoire des grands ravages d'une méchante bête » (The story of the great ravages of a wicked beast) - PSR éditions.
2001 -Guy Crouzet: «La grande peur du Gévaudan» (The great fear of Gévaudan) He reveals the result of his latest research: guilty wolves and perhaps in addition a hyena which would have prowled in Gévaudan, thus sowing confusion in the spirits.
2004-Pascal Cazottes: «La bête du Gévaudan enfin démasquée» (The beast of Gévaudan finally unmasked) He sees in the beast a hemicyon, an animal survivor of prehistory which was half dog, half bear ....
2004 -Hervé Boyac:« La bête du Gévaudan plaidoyer pour le loup » (The Beast of Gévaudan plea for the wolf) - Author's account.
2004 -André Aubazac : « Drôles de bêtes en Gévaudan » (Funny animals in Gévaudan) - Chaumeil repro Clermont Ferrand.