Illustration by Dave van Patten

Replace Your Emoji With 17th-Century Monsters

Some suggestions for really freaking out your friends this Halloween

One of the great benefits of all of our digital communication is that our devices can blend words and pictures for a more multimedia conversation experience. Usually, this just means that we stick emoji in place of words. Emojis are easy, but they’re also so mundane. You’re sending the exact same smiley that every other dude is sending. Boring.

That is why, in honor of Halloween, I would like to recommend a new set of emoji: a set created with illustrations of scientific and fantastical monstrosities from the 1600s. These illustrations have been pulled from 1642’s Monstrorum Historia by Ulyssis Aldrouandi and 1665’s De Monstris by Fortunio Liceti. Between the two books, there’s an illustration to express almost every emoji emotion you desire.

Seriously. Download these pictures to your phone and start sending them to people.

1. Grinning Face With Smiling Eyes

This emoji is also great if you were wondering what it would look like if a beached spiked fish found your grandmother’s dentures and glaucoma weed.

2. Fearful Face

For when you just remembered that the meeting is today and also that you have no opposable thumbs to make the presentation with.

3. Face With Stuck-Out Tongue

TFW you’re all like “LOL” but also you’re a horned sea creature with half-baguettes as breasts.

4. Angry Face

Send this if anyone texts you Game of Thrones spoilers.

5. Neutral Face

This is the visual equivalent of a toneless 1980s robot trying to sing the Doublemint jingle.

6. Pensive Face

She’s thinking about how she can never wear a hat.

7. Anguished Face

This one is great for commiserating when your friend is texting about his breakup, especially if you want that friend to stop texting you about his breakup.

8. Frowning Face With Open Mouth

“Uhhhhh, no. You have to do a little better than that to get this monster out of the ocean.”

9. Confused Face

Why didn’t that girl text Jake back? Why do some birds have human heads and great haircare routines? How does a bird even apply hair products? The new confused face says it all.

10. Smiling Face With Smiling Eyes

Using this adorable face in a conversation is a perfect Tinder litmus test.

11. Astonished Face

I don’t have a joke for this one, just a sincere wish that everyone who reads this article will start using it when their mothers send them mundane news about their hometowns. For example:

12. Smirking Face

I’d make a “You know what they say about men with big ears joke,” but this guy laid all of his cards out on the table.

13. Grinning Face

Finally, an emoji that says “I feel as happy as a horse with one human foot!”

14. Pouting Face

To be fair, you’d be pouting too if you had no hands and had to wait for someone to fix your cowlick.

15. Unamused Face

Theory: Real geese are constantly making this face at humans.

16. Relieved Face

“Finally, things are lookin’ up for ol’ Glen Boarbody!”

17. Smiling Face With Open Mouth

This one is great if you want to express your happiness while also subtly suggesting that you might be getting into some weird occult shit.

18. Smiling Cat Face

So cute, just like your cat at home.

19. Flushed Face

This one is also great for expressing that feeling of having several dog heads growing out of your arms and torso.

20. Eggplant

You knew this was coming, right? Well, it came.