Who wrote the book on werewolves?

werewolfMost of us are familiar with the phrase, “S/he wrote the book on [the subject].” The case holds true for werewolves. People have, in fact, written the book on the subject—and not fiction. So, for #WerewolfWednesday, I bring you a compendium of such writings.

Here are a few notable examples, if you wish to learn more about the history and folklore of werewolves.


The Book of Were-Wolves

The complete text of the book penned in 1865 in available at the link above. The author was Sabine Baring-Gould (1834-1924), who was a Vicar in the Church of England in Devon, an archaeologist, folklorist, historian and a prolific author. Baring-Gould was also a bit eccentric. He reputedly taught classes with a pet bat on his shoulder. He is best known for writing the hymn ‘Onward Christian Soldiers’.

Other early works worth noting are:

  • Prieur, Claude. Dialogue de la Lycanthropie: Ou transformation d’hommes en loups, vulgairement dits loups-garous, et si telle se peut faire. Louvain: J. Maes & P. Zangre, 1596.
  • Wolfeshusius, Johannes Fridericus. De Lycanthropia: An vere illi, ut fama est, luporum & aliarum bestiarum formis induantur. Problema philosophicum pro sententia Joan. Bodini … adversus dissentaneas aliquorum opiniones noviter assertum… Leipzig: Typis Abrahami Lambergi, 1591.


A Timeline of Shape Shifters

While Euro-centric, this time chronicles many tales and events of “werewolf” and “witchcraft panic” well.

Werewolves: The Myths & Truths

While this site isn’t a book, it chronicles many early tales and folklore.


This site contains many early legends as well.


Looking for fiction on the subject? Check out The Wolf at His Door!



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