If you do a web search for "Hsigo", you will find thousands of references and hundreds of images. I won't give specific references, because they're all complete and utter nonsense, but you can read detailed descriptions of these fake, mythical Chinese monkeys — including pseudo-learned discussions of their name — in works like the following: Erudite Tales, Creepy Hollows Encyclopedia, Mythical Creatures Guide, Encyclo, Societas Magic, Monstropedia, etc., etc. Hsigo are supposedly flying monkeys with bird-like wings, the tail of a dog, and a human face.
There's even a very brief Wikipedia entry for Hsigo, but I know a top Wikipedia editor who is endeavoring to liquidate that totally fictitious article as a first-step toward eliminating "Hsigo" lore from the Web and hopefully from circulation elsewhere as well.
It all started with a typo. See "'Hsigo', the viral OCR typo". This detective article is really quite entertaining and edifying. It ends with a reference to what our Language Log colleague, Geoffrey Nunberg, calls "the 'metadata train wreck' of Google Books". Read the rest of this entry »
Read the rest of this entry »