Thursday, April 08, 2010

American Werewolves?


What are the explanations for werewolves? Hypertrichosis is a scientific explanation.

Hypertrichosis (also known as “wolfitis”) is a rare medical condition which results in the growth of abnormal amounts of hair all over the body. A number of people suffering from hypertrichosis became famous sideshow freaks working for American impresario P.T. Barnum. Fedor Jeftichew (picture #1), born in St. Petersburg, Russia, signed on with P.T. Barnum at the age of sixteen in 1884. Barnum made a point of pointing out how much Jeftichew resembled a dog and he was known as “Jo-Jo the Dog Faced Boy”. Jeftichew barked and growled for gawking crowds to enhance his image as a half man-half beast monster. “Lionel the Lion Faced Man”, was another victim of hypertrichosis who worked for Barnum. “Lionel”, actually named Stephan Bibrowski (picture #2), was born in Poland in 1891 and began appearing in the Barnum and Bailey’s Circus in 1901. Bibrowski’s body was entirely covered by hair except for the palms of his hands and the soles of his feet. Hair hung eight inches from his face and four inches from the rest of his body. In real life, Bibrowski was well educated and spoke five languages.

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