You've probably heard the expression that someone was so wild, it's like they were "raised by animals" before, but have you ever considered the fact that this has actually happened to people throughout history?
When these children were faced with situations of neglect, abandonment, or abduction, they had to learn to fend for themselves in the wilderness. Fortunately, a few animals were there to help.
1. Marie-Angélique Memmie Le Blanc, the Wild Girl of Champagne
In the 1700s, Le Blanc was found holding a club as she wandered into the village of Songi, France. When the villagers caught her and tried to feed her, they were shocked to witness her eating the raw, dead bodies of animals that were meant to be cooked. She eventually learned to speak French and was able to read and write as an adult. Her life in the wild living among wild animals became the subject of a biography by French writer Marie-Catherine Homassel Hecquet.
2. Rochom P'ngieng, the Cambodian Jungle Girl
Rochom P'ngieng was found coming out of a jungle in 2007 in Cambodia, and is believed to have disappeared from her family home 19 years before that. She only knew a few words and crawled instead of walking, likely because she took cues from the animals all around her. She never fully adjusted to society and made multiple attempts to run back into the jungle.
3. Oxana Malaya
When she was three years old, Malaya was abandoned outside of her home by her alcoholic parents. She was cold, so she crawled into a nearby kennel where dogs took her in and began raising her. She lived with them for five years before a concerned neighbor called the police. She couldn't speak. The girl barked and walked on all fours. She has since learned to behave like a human.
4. Marina Chapman
Chapman was kidnapped from her Colombian village and abandoned, surviving by living with capuchin monkeys. She couldn't speak, and was later found by hunters who then sold her to a brothel. She was eventually rescued and adopted at the age of 14. As an adult, she wrote an autobiography about her experience called "The Girl With No Name."
5. Peter the Wild Boy
In 1725, Peter was found walking on all fours in the Hertswold Forest near Hamelin, Germany. He couldn't speak at all and was only able to learn a couple of words in his lifetime. He was moved from place to place until he was taken to a farm to live out the rest of his years. He died at 72.
6. John Ssebunya
In 1988, after witnessing his father murdering his mother, Ssebunya ran into the jungle in Uganda, where a group of vervet monkeys took him in and brought him food. After he was found in 1991 at five years old, he was adopted and learned how to behave like a human. He is now fully adjusted to society.
7. Ivan Mishukov
When he was four, Mishukov ran away from his mother and her abusive boyfriend and survived on the streets of Russia by scavenging food. When he gave some of his food to a group of dogs, they accepted him as a member of their pack. He lived with them for two years before police found him, and he later learned how to speak.
8. Dina Sanichar
In the 1800s, hunters discovered Sanichar living with wolves inside of a cave in India. The six-year-old refused to eat cooked meals, preferring raw meat instead. He was never able to adjust to human society and he died in 1895.
9. Leopard Boy
Leopard Boy was said to have been stolen as a baby and raised by a leopard alongside her cubs. He was found three years later by a man who took him in and cared for him. He walked on all fours and was watched closely by his caretaker, who worried that he would run back into the jungle.
(via All Day)