Quite an interesting topic. I tend to think the ancient writers were probably referring to an actual people group with a skewed description they’d heard from rumors of rumors spread by sailors. Reblogging on Archer’s Aim and I do love seeing the “monsters” on these old maps!
Many thanks for sharing, Paul! Yes, sailors probably had to do with all the tall tales. Especially after a few drinks…
I could see pygmies being the subject: “Their faces come to your chest!” becomes, “Their faces are on their chest!” by the time it reaches Pliny. I wonder how much he took it with a grain of salt when writing about it.
Not much. Hook, line and sinker by the looks of it 😉