Though we’ve heard about unicorns so many times, there is no exact answer for the existence of this creature. That’s why we always want to know everything related to the magical animal. Scroll down and read more to discover the most amazing unicorn legends. Hopefully, you find our article informative!
What do you know about unicorns?
Before discovering all the most exciting unicorn legends, let’s first get to know what it is! The unicorn is a legendary creature that has been described to have a horse-like body with a single large, pointed, and spiraling horn growing from its forehead. For a very long time, unicorns have occupied a strange position in popular culture. In fantasy narratives, the creatures are often noble, pure animals who can save the hero in their darkest hours.
Recently, a recent splurge in the beauty industry has witnessed unicorns splashed across holographic makeup lines, with brushed shapes like spiralled horns. Also, the unicorns draw so much attention from the children.
Behind the glitter and rainbows, you will find a somewhat spiritual creature, at times both gentle and ferocious, mysterious and medieval. You can also see unicorns on coats of arms and family crest. What’s more, the unicorn is chosen as Scotland’s national animal. What’s special, if you pay more attention to the unicorns, you will notice that there are so many unicorn facts you will love!
Unicorn legends of Antiquity
One of the very first unicorn legends was in around 398 BC, when Ctesias, a Greek physician, wrote about the unicorns. While the writer did so in Persia, his tales were supposed to be about the unicorns of India. Here, you should know that Ctesias had never actually been to India himself. He gathered most tales in his writing from travelers, so he also wrote about dog-headed men and griffins. Christ Lavers consider that these tales are so fantastical. So, we now have two options. First, we can assume he might be a liar. Or second, he just wrote down the stories from travelers, making him simply gullible.
According to Ctesias, the unicorn has a whit body, dark blue eyes, dark red head, and white, crimson, and black horn. For Elmer G Suhr, this description can be equated to a solar eclipse, with its black shadow, white corona, and “red protuberances”. Also, he can see the moon’s association with the virgin goddess Artemis as explaining the unicorn’s preference for virgins.
Unicorn legends of Medieval
Let’s come to the unicorn legends in Medieval. In the 12th century, the unicorn was described as being “very small”, just as the size of a goat’s kid. Yet this description didn’t really stick, as a famous example of Middle Ages weaving can attest.
The Unicorn Tapestries, now being at The Cloisters in New York, is a series of seven tapestries dating to around 1500. In it, hunters set out to capture a unicorn. The tapestries are mostly accurate in a botanical sense. However, the weavers and designers made it special ways. They ignored the seasons by juxtaposing plants in flowers that ordinarily bloom at different times of the year. Therefore, each type of plant will be revealed in its prime, producing an enchanting ensemble of the best that nature has to offer. This forms a lush and abundant paradise through which the unicorn can move.
What did the unicorn represent?
Actually, each type of animal, from the smallest to the largest, has its own symbol. For example, the ant symbolism stands for strength, diligence, honesty, and patience; the unicorn symbols include purity, power, and innocence.
Through several unicorn legends, the unicorns are known as the symbol of purity. This symbol is added to their mysterious untamed allure. Their ferocity in fighting, described in the Unicorn Tapestries as the unicorn fights off the hounds, is the foundation of its strength and power.
The purity of the legendary creatures is why rulers usually adopted them as a symbol. They could “celebrate their beneficence in providing their citizenry with a very safe and happy existence”. There is a unicorn on Florence’s Neptune Fountain, representing the safety of the water within.
In a biblical tale, Adam named the unicorn before any other type of animal. When he and Eve left the Garden of Eden, the unicorn also went with them. Here, unicorn adds one more feature to its list of virtues – loyalty. The creatures could return to the Garden every century. By eating the vegetation and drinking the water, the unicorns can renew its strength. This is one of the most outstanding unicorn legends we can know!
Unicorn legends of healing properties
One of the most amazing unicorn legends is that the horn of the unicorns could purify liquids, and the purified liquid can cure anyone who had been poisoned. Scholars also supposed that this magical liquid may cure epilepsy, a condition that Joan el Cacador of Aragon suffered from. This particular king was fond of hunting, but he was also interested in astrology and alchemy. He was really desperate to own a unicorn’s horn.
Scholars have indicated Joan’s interest in owning a unicorn’s horn as being symptomatic of his flightiness as a monarch. It is considered that the horn of the creature also shows an attempt to exercise his authority. Even, he was willing to throw the might of the state behind his desire so that he can own the horn. In the medieval era, the fantastic or monstrous did not seem quite so far away.
However, his epilepsy means his desire for the horn doesn’t seem quite so outlandish. Legend revealed that the Count of Armagnac sent a piece of unicorn horn to Joan. He poisoned two dogs and touched one with the horn. The reports said that the dog that was not touched with the horn died, why the other lived. Joan went on to “cure” subjects who’d been poisoned.
With the most exciting unicorn legends, people are more fond of this creature. Some people try to find out the answer to the question “What is my spirit animal” and wonder if it is the unicorn or not. They hope that the spirit animal as a unicorn will lead the way and navigate them to the true north.
With its special meaning, even in the most challenging of circumstances, the love and support that the legendary unicorn gives is undying. Yes! They are loyal to the end. Unicorns will bring you strength to help pierce through challenges and clear the path to your goals. So, never give up hope!
They visit some historical buildings in Scotland to discover places featuring unicorns. They begin to look for the best designs of unicorn shirts to wear on National Unicorn Day. In Scotland, people search for different recipes to make unicorn cupcakes on a special day for this creature. They also get pretty unicorn accessories as meaningful gifts for their loved ones.
Unicorn legends of being sold as powder
Even Nicholas Culpeper advocated for the unicorn horn’s medicinal powers. He supposed that it also “provoked urine”, restored vitality as well as helped bring on birth (Turgeon 2020).
Carolyn Turgeon shows the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries, established in 1617, features two unicorns on its crest. What’s amazing is that many apothecaries sold “powdered unicorn horn”. However, it clearly was not the horn of the unicorn. Some horns might come from narwhals, while others are believed to belong to other antlered animals such as the oryx.
What’s more, the unicorn’s horn is not the only part that owns healing properties. Hildegard of Bingen also believed that unicorn liver, mixed with egg yolks, can cure leprosy. She also considered that you could wear a belt of unicorn hide to save yourself from pestilence. These are very surprising unicorn legends that not many people have ever heard.
Above are the most amazing unicorn legends you have ever heard? What do you think about these mythical creatures? Feel free to share with us your opinion so together, we can know more about the legendary unicorns.