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With origins rooting from Algonquian legend, the Wendigo is said to be a humanoid and/or beast-like creature, mostly seen along the Atlantic Coast region and the Great Lakes woodlands of the United States and Canada. Most legends tell of the Wendigo creature coming about as a result of human cannibalism. The creature, although possessing some humanoid features, will have a beast-like appearance akin to that of wolves with some legends depicting the Wendigo as having large elk-like horns. Basil Johnston, an Ojibwe teacher and scholar from Ontario, gives one description of how Wendigos have been viewed:Wendigo Gif 1 Wendigo Gif 2







“The Wendigo was gaunt to the point of emaciation, its desiccated skin pulled tautly over its bones. With its bones pushing out against its skin, its complexion the ash gray of death, and its eyes pushed back deep into their sockets, the Wendigo looked like a gaunt skeleton recently disinterred from the grave. What lips it had were tattered and bloody [….] Unclean and suffering from suppurations of the flesh, the Wendigo gave off a strange and eerie odor of decay and decomposition, of death and corruption.”Wendigo 1

Cultures in which the Wendigo myth appear share the belief that human beings could turn into Wendigos if they ever resorted to cannibalism, or, alternatively, become possessed by the demonic spirit of a Wendigo, often in a dream. Once transformed, a person would become violent and obsessed with eating human flesh. The Wendigo creature and myth have been integrated into classic and modern pop culture over the years, with wild depictions of the creature and its mythos. The very existence of such a creature is one that will always be debated by skeptics and believers alike. Personally, with the intent of the Wendigo creature being that of cannibalism, I am perfectly content with its existence maintaining a status of folklore over reality…