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Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World is the proverbial ‘not-terrible’ dinosaur story. Let’s face it, besides Jurassic Park, there aren’t many. And Conan Doyle knocked it out of the (ahem) park back in 1912 when he brought prehistoric creatures of literary age in this tale of daring Englishmen, led by the infuriating Professor Challenger, finding dinosaurs alive and well on a flat-topped mountain in the jungles of South America.

The book is a seminal text in the colonial-era adventure genre. In this episode of WIDE ATLANTIC WEIRD, Cian sups on a Bud on the porch of the cabin in the woods and covers the myriad influences on old ACD when he wrote The Lost World. Explore the Victorian and Edwardian obsession with archaeology and exotic places. Percy Fawcett disappearing into the Amazon in 1925. The discovery of Troy. The colonial adventurer who later became an anti-imperial Irish revolutionary. The birth of what we now call cryptozoology – the hunt for mystery animals in both fact and fiction. And exactly why might readers in 1912 have been primed to believe that living dinosaurs might just exist? Down a quick brandy to steady your nerve, pack your elephant gun, and follow a crumbling map to EDWARDIANS AND DINOSAURS: THE PREHISTORY OF ‘THE LOST WORLD.’

Ladybird Pickwick Cassette Edition


Lost And Found In Maple White Land by Sherri S. Malch


The Lost City of Z by David Grann


Frank Reade and Romaina – from Science Fiction Studies


Darren Naish on Piltdown Man and Conan Doyle (Tetrapod Zoology)


Discovery of Mountain Gorillas from Mountain Gorilla Conservation Fund


Beasts And Men by Carl Hagenbeck, 1909


Hunting Monsters by Darren Naish, 2016