Have you ever wondered where the concept of a unicorn came from? Unicorns are mythical creatures who are described as white horses with goat beards, long thin tails, cloven feet, and have a single horn coming out of their foreheads. They are wild woodland creatures who symbolize purity and can only be caught by virgins.
In the movie Legend starring Tom Cruise, the unicorns are sacred creatures in the forest and they bring light to the world. In the movie, they are portrayed by large, white Andalusian horses with single horns attached to their head. Their horns can be seen wobbling as the horses are running towards the camera. You can watch clips of the unicorns in this video (you will also see young Tom Cruise with a uni-brow): Legend Unicorns video.
So, where did the concept of the unicorn come from? Well, the description of a unicorn was first written down by a Greek doctor named Ctesias from the 4th-century BC who traveled through Persia with Indian men who told him about the animals back in their homeland. One of these animals was described as a wild donkey as big as a horse with a white body, a red head, bright blue eyes, and a long, single horn extending from its forehead. The Indians also spoke about how the horn had magical properties, and when grounded down and ingested could help with stomach problems, epilepsy, and poison.
Most likely the Indian men were telling Ctesias about the White Rhinoceros who is as big as a horse, has a white body, and a single horn on its head. Sorry to spoil the romance.
It was not until the Medieval period that the unicorn, as we imagine it today, appeared in Christian art and became associated with the Virgin Mary and Christ as being a pure creature that can heal. Unicorns were also believed to rather fight and die than be captured, hence why they were chosen as Scotland's national animal and can be seen in British coats of arms today representing Scotland.
Would you want to own a unicorn? Can you imagine trying to manage a horse that had a long horn coming out of the middle of its forehead? How the heck would it fit inside a horse trailer comfortably? Thoughts?
I am Amy. I love movies, TV, and horses. I grew up with horses and taught kids how to ride during my summer breaks from school. Now I am a country girl living in a city hoping to someday move back into a rural area and own a horse again.