donderdag 31 januari 2013

Zana: Bigfoot, Human or Hybrid?

Some of the following text was posted in the Spring of 2010. I have added a few links and a recent article. In light of the Ketchum Study, Bigfoot DNA and the interest in the Zana story, I decided to expand on the older post and add some updates:

The skull of the Bigfoot was excavated almost four decades ago. People residing in the area for years still remember meeting it when it was still alive.

Local residents who buried a mother and a son indicated location of their graves. A rubber shoe branded 1888 was removed from the woman’s burial (a mirror at the head indicated it was a female). Approximately the same time Zana, a Bigfoot, died.

The researcher’s heart was beating with anticipation of the unusual find, as never before scientists laid their hands on a Bigfoot, alive or dead.

The excavation was conducted by Igor Burtsev, at the time, a young scientist, and today a leading Russian cryptozoologist. He spent several years trying to obtain the right for graves excavation in the Abkhazian village Tkhina, where Zana used to live. As luck would have it, his old college friend, an Abkhazian, became a local official upon his return to the motherland from Moscow.

“I could not have seen Zana myself, she passed away 50 years before I was born,” says Apollon Dumava, former chair of the local Council. “But my older relatives remembered her. How could you forget her? She was 6.6 feet tall, had long strong arms covered with hair, curvy hips that inspired the desire of local men, large hanging breasts, flat forehead and huge red eyes.

Zana was very strong and easily carried 110 pounds sacks with grain to the water mill with only one hand.

Apollon said his father told him that Zana was caught in a gulch of the Adzyubzha River.

She was hunted down by a local merchant. Zana was incredibly smart and could disappear a second before she would be caught. Yet, the hunter outsmarted her. He left red male underwear at the meadow frequented by the hairy creature. She was caught while trying to put the underwear on her head and hips.

The captive was named Zana (zan means black in Georgian) and placed in a ditch enclosed with a fence made of sharpened logs. She was growling, throwing herself at kids who bothered her with sticks and dirt clods. Only a few years later, when Zana was slightly tamed, she was moved to a woven hut. She slept on the ground in a cave she dug out. She never learned how to use a spoon and a plate so she ate with her hands. She was always naked. She never learned to speak, but recognized her name. Zana could take boots off her owner’s feet. She was also great at imitating the sound of squeaking gate, and it made her very happy every time she did.

Zana was not surrounded by angels. Locals made her drink wine, it did not take her long to get drunk and become sexually aggressive. There were always those willing to entertain themselves with a monster. They say during drunk orgies her owner would establish a prize for the one who “mounts” Zana. The prizes would always find their winners.

When Zana gave birth to her first child, she took it to a creek and washed it in ice cold water. The baby died. The same happened to her second child. After that, the locals decided to take babies from the silly mother. Her next children survived. There were four of them, two boys and two girls. People had no idea who their fathers were. Years later, before a census, children were assigned to a local resident Kamshish Sabekia, who acknowledged “playing” with Zana before he got married.

Photo of Khwit

Locals remember Khwit the most. He was 6.6 feet tall, had grayish skin like his mother’s, thick curly hair and full lips. He had lived in Tkhina all his life and passed away in 1954 before he turned 70. Apollon remembers him well. Like his mother, Khwit did not like children who used to get into his garden to steal grapes and pears. Once Khwit had a fight with his relative and jumped him. Defending himself, his opponent hit him with a mattock and cut his arm along the elbow. The arm had to be amputated. Apollon has a memory of this incredibly strong person plowing his lot with one left arm.

Khwit was a human being, he could speak, got married twice and had two daughters and a son.

I was looking for his daughter in Abkhazia, but she was electrocuted a year earlier. I met with her son, Robert Kukubava, and asked him for permission to take pictures of his family album.

Faces of Khwit and his sister bear resemblance to Zana’s. Khwit’s older daughter Tatyana does not look like her grandmother apart from her eyes. Raisa and her brother Shuliko are undoubtedly Khwit’s children. They have similar lower jaws, protruding cheekbones, full lips and dark skin.

Within the last 30 years Igor Burtsev found nearly all Zana’s descendants. His main goal, however, was to find Zana, or, her skeleton and skull, as well as Khwit’s remnants.

Once, 35 years ago, a female skull was excavated at the Tkhin cemetery. Yet, the anthropological analysis provided evidence that the skull belonged to a black woman who somehow got to the Caucuses.

The skull of Khwit that Burtsev and I were looking at for a long time was only partly human. - pravda


The following is a recent article:

Zana The Nineteenth Century Wild Neanderthal Woman

She was given the name Zana by Russian researchers after she was captured naked and living in the wilderness by hunters in the Ochamchir region of Georgia in the year 1850. From all accounts, she was the closest thing to a live, captured version of a Bigfoot creature on record. Some thought she might have been a throwback to the Neanderthal.

Zana was described as something between a human and an ape. She showed some degree of intelligence after some time in captivity, although she never developed the ability to speak or adopt social skills. Some said she was capable of doing hard labor such as grinding grain and farm work, but little more.

Even though she lived at a time when cameras were around, we could find no surviving photographs of either Zana, or any of the four children she reportedly bore following her capture. The children were sired by various unidentified males, and were said to have been relatively normal humans even though they all possessed some of the physical characteristics of their mother.

Her general description was that she was a large hairy humanoid with thick arms, legs and fingers, a “massive bosom” and large hips. Her skin was black or a dark gray in color, and the hair on her body was a reddish-black. She could splay the toes on her feet. Her face was broad, with high cheekbones, a flat broad nose with turned-out nostrils, a muzzle-like jaw, wide mouth and large teeth. She had a low forehead and her eyes were a reddish tinge.

It was said that at the time of her capture, Zana was a wild creature. After being brought into captivity, she had to be kept caged for the first few years until her behavior became mellowed and she could be taught to perform domestic tasks and behave herself to some degree while in society.

Among her biggest problems, however, was an unwillingness to wear clothing. Zana lived as a nude and hairy beast in the wild, and throughout her life in human society, they said she resisted having to be dressed.

That Zana existed appears to be well established. She was not a native myth. Her two sons and two daughters, and their offspring, many of whom still live in Russia, attest to this. The problem for historians and anthropologists has been just what was she, and from where did she spring?

That she could have human children after copulating with humans proved that she was not an animal. Some suggested that she may have been a genetic throwback to the Neanderthal, a humanoid that some believe cross bred with the homo sapiens, which was the reason they went extinct.

Another theory was that Zana was a deformed baby who was left in the wilderness by her mother and somehow survived to be a feral creature at the time of her capture.

Russian zoologist Alexander Mashkovtsev suggested that Zana was a relict hominoid called Abnauayu, a legendary “Wildman of the forest” said to live in certain areas of the Caucasus Mountains. These creatures have reportedly been observed, and even captured more than once. A Russian doctor, V. S. Karapetian, reportedly examined a Abnauayu in 1941 which was described as a hairy human like creature that was incapable of speech and harbored lice. Are they proof of the mythological “Bigfoot” monster?

If Mashkovtsev is correct, Zana thus became the most known Abnauayu to have ever been captured and brought into human captivity.

As the story was told, Zana put up a violent fight when the hunters surrounded and captured her. They reportedly hit her with cudgels, gagged her mough with felt and shackled her legs to a log to hold her down. Then she was literally carried back into a so-called “civilized” society where she was sold like livestock, passing first to D. M. Achba, the titular head of the Zaadan region. After this, she became the property of a nobleman, Edgi Genaba, who carried her off still shackled and chain to his estate in the town of Tkhina on the Mokva River.

Zana was first lodged in a strong cage where she acted like a wild beast. Her food was thrown to her since no one dared to enter the enclosure. She dug a hold in the ground where she slept. After some three years in this environment, they said Zana tamed down and was moved to a wattle-fence enclosure under an awning near the house. At first she was tethered, but later allowed to go free and wander about. Like any tamed animal, she never went far from the place where she received food.

Villagers sometimes teased her by throwing sticks at her through the fence. Zana would snatch them, bare her teeth and howl. She never spoke a word, but merely made animal-like sounds. She responded to her name, however, and was taught to carry out commands given to her by Genaba.

She displayed great strength and could perform many tasks that were above the ability of even the most powerful of men. Zana died and was buried at Tkhina sometime in the 1880s or 1890s. The exact location of her grave has since been lost. - Zana The Nineteenth Century Wild Neanderthal Woman - by James Donahue

NOTE: there is more information on Zana and her descendants at The Story of Zana and Myths and mysteries: Zana, the wild woman. Also, a very interesting article by Lloyd Pye - DNA Deep Throat and Zana...Lon

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