We agreed that we did indeed want one, and commissioned him. What we were not expecting was such a bloody good writer and all-round nice guy, who - by the way - is writing several other volumes for us, and he is even going to be speaking at the 2010 Weird Weekend.
Following on from the possible depiction of an Irish elk I thought I would have a look at a few other strange animals depicted on Iron Age coinage. While there are some very strange looking fantasy animals there are others that may well hint at something of a cryptozoological nature.
From the coins of the Catuvellauni and Trinovantes at the time of Cunobelin comes the horned snake. Cunobelin was possibly the greatest Iron Age ruler
While many classical mythical creatures turn up on the tribes’ coins it is perhaps the horned snake that asks the most questions. The snake doesn’t have just any old horns, it has a fine set of rams’ horns. It is true that rams’ horns did seem to turn up on a fair number of Cunobelin’s Iron Age coins. They usually represented the horns of Zeus-Ammon stuck firmly to the side of the king’s head.
Could this really be a very early attempt to show a mystery snake?
It is worth bearing in mind that while it could be a cryptic snake it could just as easily be an aerial view of a ram, perhaps Jason's legendary Golden Fleece. Like many ancient images of cryptids the picture is as ambiguous as possible