Bonnacon
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Source: Kongelige Bibliotek (Bestiarius - Bestiary of Anne Walsh (Gl. kgl. S. 1633 4)) Copyright 2003 Kongelige Bibliotek / Used by permission Manuscript description Kongelige Bibliotek, Gl. kgl. S. 1633 4, Folio 10r


 

Bonnacon

Latin name: Bonnacon

Other names: Bonasus, Vilde kow

A beast like a bull, that uses its dung as a weapon

 

 
General Attributes

The bonnacon is a beast with a head like a bull, but with horns that curl in towards each other. Because these horns are useless for defense, the bonnacon has another weapon. When pursued, the beast expels its dung which travels a great distance (as much as two acres), and burns anything it touches.


Sources (chronological order)

Pliny the Elder [1st century CE] (Natural History, Book 8, 16): The bonasus is found in Paeonia. It has the mane of a horse but otherwise resembles a bull. It has horns that curve back so they are useless for fighting; when attacked, it runs away, while releasing a trail of dung that can cover three furlongs. Contact with the dung burns pursuers as though they had touched fire.


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