Monday, December 10, 2012

Unicorns?! PART 1

"If God had not created the Unicorn, man would have invented him, for he has a form and nature that must exist." - Welleren Poltarness, A Book of Unicorns
The word unicorn comes from the Latin word Unicornis meaning "one horn".
There have been sightings of Unicorns in Africa,Asia,and other parts of the world.
Do Unicorns really exsists?
It is said that unicorns reside in deep dark forests, remote deserts,and mountain peaks. They don't tend to live in places close to humans. Which could explain why most people have never seen a unicorn. First mentioned by the ancient Greeks, it became the most important imaginary animal of the Middle Ages and Renaissance. It is said that a Unicorn's horn has the power to render poisoned water potable and to heal sickness. Until the 19th century, belief in Unicorns was widespread among historians,alchemists,writers,naturalists,physicians,and theologians.
Cosmas Indicopleustes, a merchant of Alexandria who lived in the 6th century, made a voyage to India and subsequently wrote works on cosmography. He gives a description of a unicorn based on four brass figures in the palace of the King of Ethiopia.
A one-horned animal is found on some seals from the Indus Valley Civilization. Seals with such a designare thought to be a mark of high social rank.
Unicorns can even be found in the King James version of the Bible!
Some bones were found at Unicorn Cave in Germany's Harz Mountains. Some of the bones were reconstructed by the mayor of the Magdeburg. Otto Von Guericke, as a Unicorn in 1663 but the bones were later found to just be woolly rhinoceros and a mammoth with the horn of a narwhal.
One suggestion is that the Unicorn is based on the extinct animal Elasmotherium,a huge Eurasian rhinoceras native to the stepps, south of the range of the woolly rhino of Ice Age Europe.
The power of the Unicorn rests in it's singularity. Despite variations in the mythology relating to this most elusive and remarkable of creatures, a persistent aspect of Unicorn lore is that there is only ever one of them. This adds to the most extraordinary beast, and makes it the object of passionate quest by generations of mystics, who see in it a universal symbol of the greatest prizes of all - enlightenment and spiritual transformation.
If you wish to see a historical Unicorn then look no farther than NYC were you can find the Cloisters. The Cloister was built in the 1930's and includes parts 5-centuries-old that were actually disassembled from monasteries and other buildings in France. The cloister houses the medieval collection of metropolitan Museum of Art. Were am I going with this you may ask well the high light of the collection is the Unicorn Tapestries known as The Hunt of the Unicorn. The tapestries were created around 1500 and consists of 7 tapestries. The tapestries measure 12 ft high and up to 14 ft wide.
The Tapestries were owned by the same French family for generations before being purchased by oil billionaire John D. Rockefeller Jr. in 1922. John the donated the tapestries to the metropolitan Museum of Art in 1937.
The Unicorn tapestries are immensely popular in the United States and have done much to cemnt a certain visual image of the unicorn in the minds of the American public. Nancy Hathaway who is a writer and Unicorn researcher describes the image of the Unicorn as "a graceful,horse-like animal,creamy white,with a long spiraling horn,cloven hooves,a curled beard,and a delicately plumed tail". To this day people still think of Unicorns as white horses with a spiraling horn.

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