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"The Beasts from Job in the Liber Floridus Manuscripts"
Jessie Poesch
Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, 33, 1970, 41-51
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"The abbreviated bestiary section from the Physiologus in the Liber Floridus, the spiritual encyclopedia or reference book compiled around 1120 by the monk, Lambert of St. Omer, contains short texts about real and fabulous animals, such as the rhinoceros, cameleopardis, unicorn, hyena and crocodile, traditional to bestiaries. This section ends with pictures and descriptions of the two fabulous beasts described in Job, the Behemoth and Leviathan of chapters xl and xli, each with a rider. The Behemoth is ridden by the devil, Antichrist is seated above the Leviathan. These two beasts, to my knowledge, were seldom, if ever (except in copies of the Liber Floridus), included and pictured with bestiary material. A tendency to give greater preponderance to items or 'flowers' which deal in one way or another with the expected events and calamities of the last times is characteristic of Lambert's rather personal compendium. This bias accounts in part for the unusual inclusion of the two beasts from Job, and would seem to be a manifestation of the heightened religious enthusiasms and fears of the early twelfth century." - Poesch

Language: English

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