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Beings of Legend Lore and Myth

A bestiary, or Bestiarum vocabulum is a compendium of beasts. Bestiaries were made popular in the Middle Ages in illustrated volumes that described various animals, birds and even rocks.

Location: In the stories of past lore myth and tales of old
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Latest Activity: Feb 11, 2014

The natural history and illustration of each beast was usually accompanied by a moral lesson. This reflected the belief that the world itself was the Word of God, and that every living thing had its own special meaning. For example, the pelican, which was believed to tear open its breast to bring its young to life with its own blood, was a living representation of Jesus. The bestiary, then, is also a reference to the symbolic language of animals in Western Christian art and literature.

Bestiaries were particularly popular in England and France around the 12th century and were mainly compilations of earlier texts. The earliest bestiary in the form in which it was later popularized was an anonymous 2nd century Greek volume called the Physiologus, which itself summarized ancient knowledge and wisdom about animals in the writings of classical authors such as Aristotle's Historia Animalium and various works by Herodotus, Pliny the Elder, Solinus, Aelian and other naturalists.

Following the Physiologus, Saint Isidore of Seville (Book XII of the Etymologiae) and Saint Ambrose expanded the religious message with reference to passages from the Bible and the Septuagint. They and other authors freely expanded or modified pre-existing models, constantly refining the moral content without interest or access to much more detail regarding the factual content. Nevertheless, the often fanciful accounts of these beasts were widely read and generally believed to be true. A few observations found in bestiaries, such as the migration of birds, were discounted by the natural philosophers of later centuries, only to be rediscovered in the modern scientific era.

Two illuminated Psalters, the Queen Mary Psalter (British Library Ms. Royal 2B, vii) and the Isabelle Psalter (State Library, Munich), contain full Bestiary cycles. That in the Queen Mary Psalter is in the "marginal" decorations that occupy about the bottom quarter of the page, and are unusually extensive and coherent in this work. In fact the bestiary has been expanded beyond the source in the Norman bestiary of Guillaume le Clerc to ninety animals. Some are placed in the text to make correspondences with the psalm they are illustrating. [1]

The Italian artist Leonardo da Vinci also made his own bestiary.

The Aberdeen Bestiary is one of the best known of over 50 manuscript bestiaries surviving today.

Mediaeval bestiaries are remarkably similar in sequence of the animals of which they treat.

In modern times, artists such as Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and Saul Steinberg have produced their own bestiaries. Jorge Luis Borges wrote a contemporary bestiary of sorts, the Book of Imaginary Beings, which collects imaginary beasts from bestiaries and fiction. Nicholas Christopher wrote a literary novel called "The Bestiary" (Dial, 2007) that describes a lonely young man's efforts to track down the world's most complete bestiary. Writers of Fantasy fiction draw heavily from the fanciful beasts described in mythology, fairy tales, and bestiaries. The "worlds" created in Fantasy fiction can be said to have their own bestiaries. Similarly, authors of fantasy role-playing games sometimes compile bestiaries as references, such as the Monster Manual for Dungeons & Dragons. It is not uncommon for video games with a large variety of enemies (especially RPGs) to include a bestiary of sorts. This usually takes the form of a list of enemies and a short description (e.g. the Metroid Prime and Castlevania games, as well as Dark Cloud and Final Fantasy).

Some mythical creatures, such as the dragon and griffin, have their origin in traditional mythology and have been believed to be real creatures. Others were based on real baby creatures, originating in garbled accounts of travelers' tales; such as the Vegetable Lamb of Tartary, which supposedly grew tethered to the earth (and was actually a type of fern)[1]. Examples of the legendary creatures can be found in medieval bestiaries.

Conversely, some creatures downplayed as just storytelling, have been rediscovered and found to be real in recent books, such as the giant squid (the Kraken). In Africa, Natives of the Congo told European visitors of an animal that looked like a cross between a zebra and a giraffe. While the visitors assumed the stories were just folk tales, in 1901, Sir Harry Johnston brought back pelts that proved the creature, which we now call the okapi, was real.

Often mythical creatures are hybrids, a combination of two or more animals. For example, a centaur is a combination of a man and horse, a minotaur of a man and bull, and the mermaid, half woman and half fish. These were not always intended to be understood as literal juxtapositions of parts from disparate species. Lacking a common morphological vocabulary, classical and medieval scholars and travelers would attempt to describe unusual animals by comparing them point-for-point with familiar: the giraffe, for example, was called camelopard, and thought of as a creature half-camel, and half-leopard. The leopard itself was so named as it was historically believed to be a half-lion (Latin: "leo") and half-panther (Latin: "pardus"). This etymology has been kept until the present day, despite its zoological inaccuracies.

Many legendary creatures appear prominently in fantasy fiction. These creatures are often claimed to have supernatural powers or knowledge or to guard some object of great value, which becomes critical to the plot of the story in which it is found. Dragons, for instance, are commonly depicted as perched on a gleaming hoard of gold which becomes the target of adventurers.

Other legendary creatures are thought to exist even today, including chupacabras, Bigfoot, Yeti, the Loch Ness Monster, the Jersey Devil, Mothman, Yowie, Yeren, Pukwudgie, and even space aliens. These are called cryptids by cryptozoologists.

Throughout history legendary creatures have been incorporated into heraldry and architectural decoration. Legendary creatures have also been accepted into many facets of popular culture, most notably in fantasy role playing games such as Dungeons & Dragons or Everquest, video games, and Hollywood movies.

Discussion Forum

RAVEN FOLKLORE by Rev. Carol A. Ingle (Raven) 2 Replies

RAVEN FOLKLOREThey slept until the black raven,the blithe heartedproclaimed the joy of heaven- BeowulfNative AmericanAccording to Jamie Sams and David Carson, in their excellent book Medicine Cards (which accompanies a beautiful deck of animal…Continue

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things. Last reply by Dept of PMM Artists & things Feb 11, 2014.

~ The Crow ~ by Christine Narducci 2 Replies

Here is a different take on what we know of the Crow. Some of which is obviously myth...and some might actually be fact. I had to make a few corrections to this article, but it is not mine in any way. I borrowed this excerpt from:…Continue

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things. Last reply by Dept of PMM Artists & things Feb 7, 2014.

Hecate, Greek Goddess of The Crossroads by Teths Place 5 Replies

Hecate, Greek goddess of the three paths, guardian of the household, protector of everything newly born, and the goddess of witchcraft -- once a widely revered and influential goddess, the reputation of Hecate has been tarnished over the centuries.…Continue

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things. Last reply by Dept of PMM Artists & things Feb 1, 2014.

The Goddess Nerthus & the Ancient Franks:

The Goddess Nerthus & the Ancient Franks:(Pictured:Nerthus (1905) by Emil Doepler) During the time of Roman expansion in Europe, the Romans encountered many Germanic tribes on the other side of the Rhine and Danube rivers. The German people…Continue

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Feb 1, 2014.

Water Deities

Water DeitiesA water deity is a supernatural being in mythology associated with water or various bodies of water. Water deities are common in mythology. Water deities usually were important among civilizations in which the sea or ocean, or a great…Continue

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 31, 2014.

Vampire Graves Unearthed 1 Reply

World News - Construction sites are becoming popular scenes for discoveries of everything from prehistoric mammoth fossils to newly discovered spider species. In following that trend, a recent construction project near Gliwice, Poland uncovered a…Continue

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things. Last reply by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 26, 2014.

Power Animals & Guardians by Michelle Clarke

Shamans…Continue

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 25, 2014.

Lycanthropy by Dark Reaper 1 Reply

I was just doing a little reading and came across this. It just amazes me what some people will believe sometimes. The blind and misled are only out numbered by the things they choose to believe it seems. LycanthropyLycanthropy is the transformation…Continue

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things. Last reply by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 25, 2014.

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Comment by Dept of PMM Artists & things on January 31, 2014 at 10:33pm

Slaanesh Satanas Daemon 10:21in the evenin' Jan 31
goblin is a legendary evil or mischievous creature; a grotesquely evil or evil-like phantom.

They are attributed with various (sometimes conflicting) abilities, temperaments and appearances depending on the story and country of origin. In some cases, goblins have been classified as constantly annoying little creatures somewhat related to the brownie and gnome. They are usually depicted as small, sometimes only a few inches tall, sometimes the size of a dwarf. They also often are said to possess various magical abilities. They are also very greedy and love money

Comment by Dept of PMM Artists & things on January 31, 2014 at 3:46pm

Jacob Ladder

The Goddess Diana...The 'Queen of Heaven':

(Pictured: The Goddess Diana (Artemis) of the Ephesians)

Diana is just one name for this multi-faceted Roman Goddess. Among her many names are "Lady of the Beasts", "Goddess of the Wild Woods" and perhaps most apt, the "Queen of Heaven".

***According to the "Temple of Diana" website, she is the Roman triple Goddess, her three aspects being that of Lunar Virgin, Mother of Creatures and the Huntress or Destroyer. In the guise of the triple Goddess, she could be compared to the Celtic Goddess Brigid, the Greek Goddess Hecate and Indian Goddess Kali.***

Comment by Dept of PMM Artists & things on January 31, 2014 at 1:25pm
Comment by Dept of PMM Artists & things on January 31, 2014 at 12:55pm
Comment by Dept of PMM Artists & things on January 31, 2014 at 11:12am

Dancing Willow Tree

Damona is a Gualish goddess of warm springs and the protrectress of animals. For us she represents the deep body-centered awareness needed for healing. She invites us the get naked, physically and psychologically, and slip into the warm pool of the goddess. There we can feel ourselves and all of our emotions. Our deep instinctual nature can emerge, guiding us toward wholeness. My painting: Wild Woman Damona

Comment by Dept of PMM Artists & things on January 30, 2014 at 2:35pm

Crow Spirit Animal

The crow is a spirit animal associated with life mysteries and magic. As totem and spirit guide the crow provides powerful insight.

A sign of luck, the crow is also associated with the archetype of the trickster - so be aware of deceiving appearances. If the crow has chosen you as your spirit or totem animal, it supports you in developing the power of sight, transformation and connection with life’s magic.

Because of its affinity with life mysteries and magic, the crow is seen in many shamanic traditions. It is the spirit animal of choice for those who use magic and have the power to manipulate the law of our physical universe. The crow often is the animal of choice of shape shifters.

As a spirit guide, the crow will guide you in getting in touch with life mysteries and develop your ability to perceive subtle shifts in energy within yourself and in your environment. It has the ability to go beyond the illusions, especially duality of right and wrong, inner and outer.

http://www.thesmartwitch.com/

[Image: Jon Snow by Lulebel
http://lulebel.deviantart.com/art/Jon-Snow-376185643

Comment by Dept of PMM Artists & things on January 29, 2014 at 6:15pm

Slaanesh Satanas Daemon

A Pukwudgie or hell's foot soldiers by

christian orthadoxs is a 2-or-3-foot-tall (0.61 or 0.91 m) being from the Wampanoag folklore. Pukwudgies' features resemble those of a human, but with enlarged noses, fingers and ears. Their skin is described as being a smooth grey, and at times has been known to glow.

In Native American lore, Pukwudgies have the following traits and abilities;
they can appear and disappear at will
they can transform into a walking porcupine (it looks like a porcupine from the back, and the front is half-troll, half-human and walks upright)
they can attack people and lure them to their deaths
they are able to use magic
they have poison arrows
they can create fire at will
Pukwudgies control Tei-Pai-Wankas which are believed to be the souls of Native Americans they have killed.

Native Americans believed that Pukwudgies were best left alone. When you see a Pukwudgie you are not supposed to mess with them, or they will repay you by playing nasty tricks on you, or by following you and causing trouble. They were once friendly to humans, but then turned against them. They are known to kidnap people, push them off cliffs, attack their victims with short knives and spears, and to use sand to blind their victims

Comment by Dept of PMM Artists & things on January 29, 2014 at 6:11pm

Slaanesh Satanas Daemon 6:03in the evenin' Jan 26
The designations of Gods, Demons, Aedra, and Daedra, are universally confusing to the layman. They are often used interchangeably due to the arrogance and ignorance of the said user.

"Aedra" and "Daedra" are not relative terms. They are Elvish and exact. Azura is a Daedra both in Skyrim and Morrowind. "Aedra" is usually translated as "ancestor," which is as close as Cyrodilic can come to this Elven concept. "Daedra" means, roughly, "not our ancestors." This distinction was crucial to the Dunmer, whose fundamental split in ideology is represented in their mythical genealogy.

Aedra are associated with stasis. Daedra represent change.

Aedra created the mortal world and are bound to the Earth Bones. Daedra, who cannot create, have the power to change.

As part of the divine contract of creation, the Aedra can be killed. Witness Lorkan and the moons.

The protean Daedra, for whom the rules do not apply, can only be banished.

Comment by Dept of PMM Artists & things on January 29, 2014 at 5:36pm

Pandora

In Classical Greek mythology dating to Hesiod, Pandora was the first human woman created by the deities. Specifically, she was created by Hephaestus and Athena on the instructions of Zeus.

Each of the deities helped to create her by giving her unique gifts. Zeus ordered Hephaestus to mold her out of Earth as part of the punishment of humanity for Prometheus' theft of the secret of fire. All of the gods joined in offering her "seductive gifts."

According to the Hesiodic myth, Pandora opened a jar (pithos), which in contemporary retellings is mistranslated as "Pandora's box." She opened the jar out of simple curiosity and not as a malicious act, however, the release of all the evils of humanity is attributed to this single act.

Aside from plagues and diseases, however, Hesiod does not specify the particular evils in detail. Only Hope is said to have remained once Pandora closed the jar.

http://www.thesmartwitch.com/

[Image: Artist is Warwick Goble]

Comment by Dept of PMM Artists & things on January 29, 2014 at 2:22pm
 

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Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries had its humble beginnings as an idea of a few artisans and craftsmen who enjoy performing with live steel fighting. As well as a patchwork quilt tent canvas. Most had prior military experience hence the name.

 

Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries.

 

Vendertainers that brought many things to a show and are know for helping out where ever they can.

As well as being a place where the older hand made items could be found made by them and enjoyed by all.

We expanded over the years to become well known at what we do. Now we represent over 100 artisans and craftsman that are well known in their venues and some just starting out. Some of their works have been premiered in TV, stage and movies on a regular basis.

Specializing in Medieval, Goth , Stage Film, BDFSM and Practitioner.

Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries a Dept of, Ask For IT was started by artists and former military veterans, and sword fighters, representing over 100 artisans, one who made his living traveling from fair to festival vending medieval wares. The majority of his customers are re-enactors, SCAdians and the like, looking to build their kit with period clothing, feast gear, adornments, etc.

Likewise, it is typical for these history-lovers to peruse the tent (aka mobile store front) and, upon finding something that pleases the eye, ask "Is this period?"

A deceitful query!! This is not a yes or no question. One must have a damn good understanding of European history (at least) from the fall of Rome to the mid-1600's to properly answer. Taking into account, also, the culture in which the querent is dressed is vitally important. You see, though it may be well within medieval period, it would be strange to see a Viking wearing a Caftan...or is it?

After a festival's time of answering weighty questions such as these, I'd sleep like a log! Only a mad man could possibly remember the place and time for each piece of kitchen ware, weaponry, cloth, and chain within a span of 1,000 years!! Surely there must be an easier way, a place where he could post all this knowledge...

Traveling Within The World is meant to be such a place. A place for all of these artists to keep in touch and directly interact with their fellow geeks and re-enactment hobbyists, their clientele.

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