Illustrated by Ruth Sanderson
In the author's notes Jane quotes Leis Carroll in Through the Looking Glass, the Unicorn says to Alice, "If you believe in me, I'll believe in you. Is that a bargain?"
6) Many scientists say that while there are one horned creatures that have been spotted and documented, they attribute these animals to be victims of genetic mutation, rather than an undiscovered species. ie: the one horned Italian deer found at a wildlife preserve in the town of Prato, outside of Florence.
7) Because Ctesias spoke of the unicorn in the court of Darius II, the King of Persia in 416 BC. Chinese writings date back to 2800 BC. The men of the ancient world believed in the existence of the unicorn, so the object of their searching was to find it, not to prove it existed. It wasn't until later in history that man began to doubt the unicorn's physical existence. In the ninth century,Margoulies wrote, "It is universally held that the unicorn is a supernatural being and of auspicious omen; so say the odes, the annals, the biographies of worthies, and other texts whose authority is unimpeachable.Even village women and children know the unicorn is a lucky sign. But this animal does not figure among the barnyard animals, it is not always easy to come across, it does not lend itself to zoological classification, nor isit like the horse or bull, the wolf or deer. In such circumstances we may be face to face with a unicorn and not know for sure that we are. We know a certain animal with a mane is a horse and that a certain animal with horns is a bull. We do not know what the unicorn looks like."
8) It is said that Pope Paul III paid 12,000 pieces of gold for the horn of a Unicorn and James I of England paid 10,000 pounds sterling for one. What they most likely had paid for was the tusk of a narwhal
1) In Midieval lore the unicorn symbolized the incarnation of Christ (as in the Physiologous)
3) Beguiled lovers
4) Some writers translate unicorn and virgin lore as allegory of the relationship between Christ Jesus and the Virgin Mary.
5) With the rise of humanism, the unicorn took on more secular meanings, emblematic of chaste love and faithful marriage.
1) Can only be captured by unfair means or by a maiden. In one of his notebooks Leonardo De Vinci wrote:
2) able to converse with humans but in a strange telepathic way that has no need for words. Their audible voice is rarely heard and then only as a cry of rage when driven beyond endurance, a scream so dreadful that often it is enough in itself to destroy the sanity of an aggressor.
"The unicorn, through its intemperance and not knowing how to control itself, for the love it bears to fair maidens forgets its ferocity and wildness; and laying aside all fear it will go up to a seated damsel and go to sleep in her lap, and thus the hunters take it."
The unicorn, tamable only by a virgin woman, was well established in medieval lore by the time Marco Polo described them as:
scarcely smaller than elephants. They have the hair of a buffalo and feet like an elephant's. They have a single large black horn in the middle of the forehead... They have a head like a wild boar's… They spend their time by preference wallowing in mud and slime. They are very ugly brutes to look at. They are not at all such as we describe them when we relate that they let themselves be captured by virgins, but clean contrary to our notions.
It is clear that Marco Polo was describing a rhinoceros. In Germany, since the 16th century, Einhorn ("one-horn") has become a descriptor of the various species of rhinoceros.2) Ancient Norwegians were said to believe the narwhal to have affirmed the existence of the unicorn. The unicorn horn was believed to stem from the narwhal tooth, which grows outward and projects from its upper jaw.