Being of Ib (www.stanwinstonschool.com)
The Beings of Ib were a species of semi-aquatic, anthropomorphic creatures that lived in a City called Ib in the land of Mnar. Ib was a great stone city located along the shoreline of a vast lake and was greater than 10,000 years old. While the lake had no formally recognized name, for the sake of this discussion we will call it the Lake of Ib. According to H.P. Lovecraft in the tale “The Doom that Came to Sarnath” the Lake of Ib was “…a vast still lake that is fed by no stream, and out of which no stream flows.” This type of lake, one where there are no inlets and no outlet is called a seepage lake (A Treatise on Limnology, Volume 1 – Geography, Physics, and Chemistry by G. E. Hutchinson; John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 1957). Seepage lakes tend to be landlocked waterbodies (not connected to coastal / oceanic ecosystems), are supplied water through precipitation and groundwater and may experience groundwater seepage. Thus, the water level of seepage lakes typically reflects the regional climate and rainfall patterns and can fluctuate, as is documented in “The Doom that Came to Sarnath.”
As Lovecraft cited there is very little known about the Being of Ib (from now on called Ibians) and one of the reasons for this is that they were very old as a species and pre-dated humans. The Ibians were described as having “…bulging eyes, pouting, flabby lips, and curious ears, and were without voice.” In addition, these creatures were known to have a thin, greenish skin. They were also known to worship Bokrug, the great water-lizard (more on Bokrug in an upcoming article) and dance in front of a stone idol of this being when the moon was gibbous. A gibbous moon is essentially when the moon is more than half illuminated.
Phases of the moon, including gibbous (www.moonConnection.com)
Based on what little information we have the Ibians were more than likely an ancient race of sentient amphibians. Limbed vertebrates can be found in the fossil recorded in the Devonian period, more than 375 million years ago (Evolution: The First Four Billion Years, edited by Michael Ruse and Joseph Travis; 2009) and were essentially amphibians. The amphibians were essentially the “doorway” to terrestrial life on Earth for all vertebrates (reptiles, dinosaurs, mammals and birds) and were extremely diverse ranging in size from as small as a salamander to larger than an alligator. However, about 300 million years ago, during the great Permian extinction most of the amphibian lineages went extinct (Ruse and Travis, 2009). One of these lineages may have survived the Permian extinction and went on to eventually develop into the Ibians.
More than likely the Ibians are ancestrally related to frogs or salamanders. I hypothesize that they are more closely related to salamanders than frogs simply due to the fact that the Ibians were known to have no voice. Unlike frogs, salamanders usually have no voice and do not use sound for communication. While a few salamander species can make ticking, popping or even barking noises (mudpuppies) most are silent and do not sing like frogs. However, to support this hypothesis some DNA or RNA testing / comparisons would be required among frogs, salamanders and the Ibians.
Is the salamander a distant relative of the Ibians? (www.wikipedia.com)
While the Ibians lived in the stone city of Ib along the shoreline of the lake, it is more than likely that they also lived in the lake as well. Being amphibians maybe they tended their young in the lake. One can imagine a nursery of egg masses where the Ibian larvae would hatch and reside in the shallow waters of the lake, feeding off the periphyton (attached algae)
More on the Ibian culture and religion will be discussed in a future article; however, I do want to conclude with some thoughts on comparing the Ibians to the Deep Ones. It should be emphasized that the Deep Ones are largely marine in distribution, living in coastal and oceanic habitats, while the Ibians appear to reside in freshwater environments. More importantly, it has been well documented that the Deep Ones can reproduce with humans, which indicates a strong genetic connection being these two species (if they can even be considered different species, which largely depends on if the hybrid Deep Ones can reproduce). There is no indication that Ibians and humans and reproduce. In fact, based on the hypothesis presented in this discussion, Ibians are as distinctly genetic different to humans as are salamanders.
An Ibian by Michael Bukowski (www.yog-blogsoth.blogspot.com)
Next time we will discuss what happened to the Ibians once humans came to the land of Mnar and settled along the shores of the Lake of Ib. Thank you – Fred.