AS an independent researcher of classical legends about natural history, I explore the borders of ancient and modern knowledge, collecting unclassifiable passages in Greek and Latin texts, searching for meaningful patterns, and relating the results to modern science. My investigations would be impossible without the help of experts in a wide range of disciplines. Like the ancient Greek investigators Herodotus and Pausanias, I freely admit that over the years I have pestered many authorities in ancient history, classical literature, archaeology, geology, and paleontology with questions that may have seemed bizarre. In recovering the story of ancient Greek and Roman encounters with prehistoric fossils and synthesizing the ancient experiences with recent paleontological discoveries, I am deeply indebted to the generosity and enthusiasm of many individuals in the humanities and the sciences.
Lowell Edmunds, Richard Greenwell, and Dale Russell gave early and sustaining encouragement. From the beginning, Jack Repcheck’s zeal was an inspiration. This project would not have been possible without the expertise of Eric Buffetaut, David Reese, and Nikos Solounias. I’m especially conscious of valuable criticism from Paul Cartledge, Peter Dodson, William Hansen, Geoffrey Lloyd, Michelle Maskiell, Barry Strauss, and Norton Wise who read chapters in draft. The following people went out of their way to assist in various ways: Carla Antonaccio, Filippo Barattolo, John Barry, John Boardman, Phil Curry, Kris Ellingsen, Sue Frary, Neil Greenberg, Arthur A. Harris, Ed Heck, Jenny Herdman, Jack Horner, George Huxley, Brad Inwood, Christine Janis, Sheldon Judson, Robert Raster, George Koufos, Helmut Kyrieleis, Kenneth Lapatin, Adrian Lister, Beauvais Lyons, John Oakley, John Ostrom,