Ecuadorean Giant

GiantHominid of South America.

Physical description: Long head-hair. Beard. Large eyes.

Behavior: Bloodthirsty. Lives in villages. Has knowledge of wells and masonry. Wears animal skins. Rapes women and kills men. Openly practices sodomy.

Distribution: Santa Elena, Ecuador. Significant sighting: A group of giant men is said to have landed their seagoing rafts near Santa Elena, Ecuador, in the remote past. Large fossil ribs, skulls, and teeth were discovered by Capt. Juan de Olmos of Trujillo in the area in 1543 and attributed to the myth. Possible explanations:

(1) Memory of a pre-Columbian visit by Polynesians.

(2) Legends surrounding the Las Vegas preceramic culture, which lived in the area 8000-4700 b.c In 1977, a burial site yielded some 200 interments from the period, including the double burial of a man and woman entwined in each others' arms; they became affectionately known as the "Lovers of Sumpa," as the area is called. Sources: Garcilaso de la Vega, The Incas: The Royal Commentaries of the Inca [1617], ed. Alain Gheerbrant (New York: Avon, 1964), pp. 327-328 (bk. ix); Adolph F. Bandelier, "Traditions of Precolumbian Landings on the Western Coast of South America," American Anthropologist 7 (1905): 250-270.

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