Bibliography Index - By Author, Annotated


Aberdeen University

The Aberdeen Bestiary Project (Aberdeen University, 1996) [Web page]

A description of the project to digitize Aberdeen University Library, Univ. Lib. MS 24.

The Aberdeen Bestiary (Aberdeen University Library MS 24) is considered to be one of the best examples of its type. The manuscript, written and illuminated in England around 1200, is of added interest since it contains notes, sketches and other evidence of the way it was designed and executed.

The entire manuscript has been digitised using Photo-CD technology, thus creating a surrogate, while allowing greater access to the text itself. The digitised version, offering the display of full-page images and of detailed views of illustrations and other significant features, is complemented by a series of commentaries, and a transcription and translation of the original Latin.

The first and still the most comprehensive online edition of a Bestiary.

Language: English


Dmitri Abramov

'Liber de naturis rerum' von Pseudo-John Folsham - eine moralisierende lateinische Enzyklopädie aus dem 13. Jahrhundert (Hamburg: University of Hamburg, 2003) [Dissertation]

Unpublished PhD thesis, University of Hamburg.

Language: German


Die moralisierende Enzyklopädie 'Liber de naturis rerum' von Pseudo-John Folsham (in Christel Meier, ed., Die Enzyklopädie im Wandel vom Hochmittelalter bis zur frühen Neuzeit, München: Münstersche Mittelalter-Schriften 78, 2002, page 123-154) [Book article]

A description of a natural-science encyclopaedia 'Liber de naturis rerum' which was written 1230-40 in England. The author is anonymous, probably an English Dominican. The encyclopaedia was sometimes falsely ascribed to John Folsham, an English Carmelite, died 1348. The work is found in Trinity College Library, R.15.13.

Language: German


Paul Acker

The Bird and Animal Captions in the Pepysian Sketchbook (Colorado: English Language Notes, 2000; Series: Volume 38, Issue 2)

Pepys Library, Pepys MS 1916, otherwise known as the "Pepysian Sketchbook" ... is well known for its drawings and paintings of draped hum figures, grotesques, animals and especially birds. ... Many of the captions are badly rubbed and difficult to make out clearly. By examining the manuscript under ultra-violet light, I was able to read and transcribe tj the captions more reliably; furthermore, ultra-violet light revealed and additional eight captions... I offer here a new transcription of all the captions and a few lexicographical notes on some of the bird and animal names. - [Author]

Language: English
DOI: 10.1215/00138282-38.2.1


Vladimir Acosta

Animales e imaginario: la zoología maravillosa medieval (Caracas: Dirección de Cultura, Universidad Central de Venezuela, 1995; Series: Colección Letras de Venezuela 125; Serie Ensayo) [Book]

376 pp., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Spanish
ISBN: 980-00-0875-6; LCCN: 96193653; LC: GR825.A651995; DDC: 398/.469


Claudius Aelianus, Gregory McNamee, trans

Aelian’s On the Nature of Animals (Trinity University Press, 2011)

De Natura Animalium (On the Nature of Animals) has a similar patchwork quality, but it was esteemed enough in his time to survive more or less whole, and it is about all that we know of Aelian’s work today. A mostly randomly ordered collection of stories that he found interesting enough to relate about animals—whether or not he believed them—Aelian’s book constitutes an early encyclopedia of animal behavior, affording unparalleled insight into what ancient Romans knew about and thought about animals—and, of particular interest to modern scholars, about animal minds. ... That he is not better known is simply an accident: he has not been widely translated into English, or indeed any European language. This selection from his work will introduce readers to a lively mind and a witty writer who has much to tell us. - [Author]

Language: English


Claudius Aelianus, A. F. Scholfield, trans.

On the Nature of Animals (London: Harvard University Press, 1958-59; Series: Loeb classical library) [Book]

Aelian's On the Characteristics of Animals, in 17 books, is a collection of facts and beliefs concerning the habits of animals drawn from Greek authors and some personal observation. Fact, fancy, legend, stories and gossip all play their part in a narrative which is meant to entertain readers. If there is any ethical motive, it is that the virtues of untaught yet reasoning animals can be a lesson to thoughtless and selfish mankind. The Loeb Classical Library edition of the work is in three volumes. - [Publisher]

Language: English
978-0674994911; OCLC: 221187132


Aesop, William Caxton, trans.; Robert T. Lenaghan, ed.

Caxton’s Aesop (Harvard University Press, 1967)

Aesop’s fables, along with a body of other folktales that became attached to them, were traditional popular lore in the Middle Ages and a natural choice for early printing. William Caxton, who established his press in Westminster in 1476, printed his English translation of the fables in 1483–84 from the largest collection then available. The complete Caxton’s Aesop is presented here in an attractively illustrated scholarly edition. Robert Lenaghan’s introduction gives the known historical background of the Caxton fables and their sources, and discusses the Aesopic fable in the Middle Ages. - [Publisher]

Language: English
ISBN: 978-0-674-73084-7


Aesop, Joseph Jacobs, ed.

The Fables of Aesop (New York: Macmillan & Co., 1922)

The Fables of Aesop selected, told anew and their history traced by Joseph Jacobs. done into pictures by Richard Heihway.

Much has been learnt during the present century about the history of the various apologues that walk abroad under the name of "Æsop." I have attempted to bring these various lines of research together in the somewhat elaborate introductory volume which I wrote to accompany my edition of Caxton's Æsop, published by Mr. Nutt in his Bibliothèque de Carabas. I have placed in front of the present version of the "Fables," by kind permission of Mr. Nutt, the short abstract of my researches in which I there summed up the results of that volume. I must accompany it, here as there, by a warning to the reader, that for a large proportion of the results thus reached I am myself responsible; but I am happy to say that many of them have been accepted by the experts in America, France, and Germany, who have done me the honour to consider my researches. Here, in England, there does not seem to be much interest in this class of work, and English scholars, for the most part, are content to remain in ignorance of the methods and results of literary history. I have attached to the "Fables" in the obscurity of small print at the end a series of notes, summing up what is known as to the provenance of each fable. Here, again, I have tried to put in shorter and more readable form the results of my researches in the volume to which I have already referred. - [Preface]

Language: English


Aesop, V.S Vernon Jones, trans.

Aesop's Fables; a new translation (New York: Avenel Books, 1912)

An English translation of Aesop's Fables. Illustrations by Arthur Rackham.

Language: English


Aesop, John Lock

Æsop's Fables in English and Latin, interlineary (A. & J. Churchil, 1703)

Aesop's Fables in English translation with Latin text below.

Language: English/Latin


Aesop, John R. Long

Aesop's Fables Online Collection (John R. Long, 1997)

An online collection of over 650 Aesop's Fables in English.

Language: English


Aesop, Ben Edwin Perry, ed.

Aesopica: A Series of Texts Relating to Aesop or Ascribed to Him (Champaign, IL: University of Illinois Press, 2007)

Ben Edwin Perry's Aesopica remains the definitive edition of all fables reputed to be by Aesop. The volume begins traditionally with a life of Aesop, but in two different and previously unedited Greek versions, with collations that record variations in the major recensions. It includes 179 proverbs attributed to Aesop and 725 carefully organized fables, for which Perry also provides their eldest known sources. To better evaluate the place of Aesop in literary history, Perry includes testimonies about Aesop made by Greek and Latin authors, from Herodotus to Maximus Planudes. - [Publisher]

Language: English


Aesop, Olivia & Robert Temple, trans.

Aesop: The Complete Fables (London: Penguin Books, 1998) [Book]

The complete corpus of 358 fables ascribed to Aesop. This translation is based on the earlier work by Emile Chambray (Esope Fables, text Etabli et Traduit par Emile Chambray, Paris, 1927), who established the numbering system.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-14-044649-4


Aesop, George Fyler Townsend, trans.

Aesop's Fables (Chicago: Belford, Clarke & Co., 1887)

An English translation of the fables of Aesop.

Language: English


Three Hundred Æsop's Fables (G. Routledge and Sons, 1867)

Three hundred Aesop's Fables translated from Gree to English. Online source has the full text of the book.

Language: English
OCLC: 50382934


Karl Ahrens

Buch der Naturgegenstände (Kiel: C.F. Haeseler, 1892) [Book]

A Syriac version of the Physiologus, with German translation. The source manuscript is probably a 19th century copy.

In addition to previously published editions of Physiologus, the Syrian Buch der Naturgegenstände [BNG, Book of Natural Things] published and translated below, written by the philosopher Aristotle, provides a new one. According to its content, it is divided into four main divisions: land animals, birds, reptiles and aquatic animals; Of these, the sections on land animals and on aquatic animals are each introduced by a larger section in which general remarks on the peculiarities of the animal class in question are compiled; The comments about the birds are broken up into several sections; they are missing about the reptiles. What is now offered in the individual sections goes far beyond the content of the traditional Physiologus, both in terms of the number of chapters and the scope of the narrative in individual chapters; on the other hand, the theories that are otherwise attached are missing. For these reasons I concluded in my treatise "On the history of the so-called Physiologus" published in 1885 that not only the basic form of the Physiologus was present in the Book of Natural Objects, but also the source Basilius the Great for the animal stories in his Homilies on the Hexaemeron. However, I have to withdraw this assumption as untenable; because, what is particularly important, the unity of the BNG cannot be proven; rather, it must be admitted that it is a collective work. First of all, the geographical chapters (80-89) should perhaps be excluded, as they insert themselves between reptiles and fish and completely interrupt the content; then the writing is also characterized as a collective work by the fact that the same animal is mentioned repeatedly a few times (Siren 38 and 110, Seleucis 56 and 63). In the BNG we obviously have to distinguish between different parts, one of which corresponds to the stories of Physiologus, while another refers back to Basilius, so that our book is related to the Phys. Syr. Land as well as the section in Pseudo-Eustathius dealing with the creation of animals, both of which also show a union of Physiologus and certain sections from Basil. Our task will now be to subject the relationship of the BNG to the writings mentioned to a new examination; We start with those sections that are common to the BNG and the Physiologus. - [Author]

Language: German
LCCN: 44-25036; LC: PJ5671.P54; DDC: 381.45; OCLC: 6892892


Zur Geschichte des sogenannten Physiologus (Ploen: 1885) [Book]

On the History of the Physiologus. Includes a table of beasts.

Language: German
OCLC: 785870867


Pauline Aiken

The Animal History of Albertus Magnus and Thomas of Cantimpré (Speculum, 22 (April), 1947, page 205-225) [Journal article]

The problem of the relationship between the last five books of Albertus Magnus' De Animalibus and the corresponding books of the De Natura Rerum of Thomas of Cantimpre was first raised nearly a century ago and has not yet been conclusively solved. ... The present paper attempts to show that Albertus borrowed extensively from Thomas. Certain restrictions as to the kinds of evidence valid for such an argument are immediately obvious. Since Thomas' statements are nearly all taken from earlier writings, which were also available to Albertus, material common to the De Natura Rerum and the De Animalibus does not necessarily constitute evidence of influence. Moreover, since Albertus usually rephrases borrowed material, it is difficult to establish conclusively by parallel phrasing alone the sources upon which he drew. It is necessary, therefore, to find in Thomas' work statements not included in his sources and to show that Albertus reproduced these passages. The obvious approach to such a purpose is a study of Thomas' errors. If it can be shown that Albertus consistently reproduces errors original with Thomas, we have, it seems to me, unmistakable evidence of borrowing. - [Author]

Language: English
DOI: 10.2307/2854727


Albertus Magnus

De animalibus (Catholic Library)

An online transcription of the De animalibus of Albertus Magnus. The source of the transcription is not stated. The Latin name of the animals are presented as a link list with the (partial?) text displayed on click.

Language: Latin


De animalibus (Johannes und Gregorius de Gregoriis, 1495)

An early printed edition of De animalibus, an encyclopedia by Albertus Magnus. Includes a table of contents and an index of animal names.

Language: Latin


Diui Alberti Magni de Animalibus Libri vigintisex Nouissime impressi (Venice: Joannes and Gregorius de Gregoriis, de Forlivio / Octauiani Scoti, 1495, 1519)

An early printed edition of De animalibus by Albertus Magnus.

Language: Latin
LCCN: 76516279; OCLC: 159902963


Incipit liber Alberti magni animalium ... (per Paulum Johan[n]is de Butschbach alamanum Paul von Butzbach, 1479)

An early printed edition of De animalibus by Albertus Magnus.

Language: Latin


The secrets of Albertus Magnus : of the vertues of herbs, stones, and certain beasts. (London: Printed by M.H. and J.M. and are to be sold by J. Wright, J. Clarke, W. Thackeray, & T. Passinger, 1691)

Full title: The secrets of Albertus Magnus : of the vertues of herbs, stones, and certain beasts. Whereunto is newly added, a short discourse of the seven planets, governing the nativities of children. Also a book of the same author, of the marvellous things of the world, and of certain things, caused of certain beasts

An English translation of pseudo-Albertus Magnus's De virtutibus herbarum, lapidum, & animalium quorundam libellus, and his De mirabilibus mundi, ac de quibusdam effectibus causatis à quibusdam animalibus. Commonly attributed to but probably not actually by Albertus Magnus.

Language: English


Albertus Magnus, Irven M. Resnick and Kenneth F. Kitchell Jr., trans.

Albertus Magnus, on Animals: A Medieval Summa Zoologica (Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 2018)

An English translation of Albertus Magnus

In this translated and annotated edition, Kenneth F. Kitchell Jr. and Irven Michael Resnick illuminate the importance of this work, allowing Albert’s magnum opus to be better understood and more widely appreciated than ever before. Broken into two volumes (Books 1–10 and 11–26), Albertus Magnus On Animals is a veritable medieval scientific encyclopedia, ranging in topics from medicine, embryology, and comparative anatomy to women, hunting and everyday life, commerce, and much more—an essential work for historians, medievalists, scientists, and philosophers alike. - [Publisher]

Language: English
978-0-8142-1359-9; OCLC: 40575321


Questions concerning Aristotle's on Animals (Washington: Catholic University of America Press, 2008; Series: The Fathers of the Church : A New Translation)

An English translation of Quaestiones super De animalibus by Albertus Magnus, a commentary on Aristotle's De animalibus.

This text, the Questions concerning Aristotle's On Animals [Quaestiones super de animalibus], recovered only at the beginning of the twentieth century and never before translated in its entirety, represents Conrad of Austria's report on a series of disputed questions that Albert the Great addressed in Cologne ca. 1258. The Questions, in nineteen books, mixes two distinct genres: the scholastic quaestio, with arguments pro et contra, a determination, and answers to the objections; and the straightforward question-and-response. - [Publisher]

Language: English
978-0813215198; DOI: 10.2307/j.ctt285073


Albertus Magnus, James J. Scanlan, trans.

Man and the Beasts (de Animalibus, Books 22-26) (New York: Center for Medieval and Early Renaissance Studies (SUNY), 1987; Series: Medieval & Renaissance Texts & Studies, Volume 47) [Book]

The intent of this translation is to introduce the modern reader to the zoological researches of Albertus Magnus. Though revered as a saint and doctor of the Church and remembered as the mentor of Thomas Aquinas, Albert is less known for his accomplishments in the natural sciences, despite the fact that prominent historians have acclaimed him as the most noted naturalist of Latin Europe in the Middle Ages. ... The present translation of Books 22 to 26 .. is based on [Hermann] Stadler's edition. ... In these final five books of De Animalibus Albert doffed the cap of a scholastic philosopher and assumed the role of a naturalist, a scientist giving free rein to his powers of observation, calling upon an abundant store zoological knowledge accumulated during his travels and citing a number of authorities for animals that lay beyond the ken of his own experience." - [Author]

Stadler based his edition on the manuscript copy of De Animalibus in the municipal archives of Cologne (Historisches Archiv der Stadt Köln, W 258A).

Scanlan includes a biography of Albert, a discussion of his sources and methods, and an extensive biography.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-86698-032-6


Albertus Magnus, Hermann Stadler, ed.

De animalibus libri XXVI (Munich: Beitäge zur Geschichte der Philosophie des Mittelalters, 1916-20; Series: Volumes 15 & 16) [Book]

An edition of the De animalibus of Albertus Magnus Books 1-26.

Volume 15 of the series includes Books 1-12; volume 16 includes Books 13-26.

German introduction and notes; Latin transcription. With an index of books, chapters and animal names in volume 16.


Language: Latin


Rosa Alcoy

L'agnello e la colomba: gli animali più simbolici e il loro contesto nell’arte catalana medievale (IKON: Journal of Iconographic Studies, 2009; Series: Volume 2)

By examining Catalan art of the medieval period as a reference context, it is possible to analyze the inclusion of the lamb and the dove in a series of important iconographic programs that take us from monuments to illustrated books, from the 11th and 12th centuries to 15th century. Logically, it is not possible to examine all the examples that have come to us nor all the nuances of the case, but I will try to offer a representative list here. The distance that separates these animals from the represented being places them among the most profoundly symbolic beings of Christian religiosity. In any case, and in general terms, the triumphant Agnus lacks a narrative perspective equivalent to that of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, we must consider the similarities and differences that separate both symbols, dove and lamb, as projections and symbols of the complex situations that require the metaphorical visualization of the divine being. - [Abstract]

Language: Italian
1846-8551; DOI: 10.1484/J.IKON.3.34


R. McN. Alexander

The Evolution of the Basilisk (Greece & Rome, Second series, 10:2 (October), 1963, page 170-181) [Journal article]

The author traces the evolution of the basilisk story from ancient Latin works, concluding that it is based on the Egyptian cobra. The story is then followed through to the middle ages, with examples from medieval authors, showing how it changed because of misunderstandings.

Language: English


Monique Alexandre

Bestiaire chretien: Mort, renovation, resurrection dans le Physiologus; Actes du Colloque de Poitiers, 13-14 mai 1983 (in Francois Jouan, ed., Mort et fecondite dans les mythologies: Travaux et memoires, Paris: Belles Lettres, 1986, page 119-137) [Book article]

Language: French


Gloria Allaire

Animal descriptions in Andrea da Barberino's Guerrino meschino (Romance Philology, 56:1, 2002, page 23-39) [Journal article]

Aims to identify Andrea da Barberino's sources for the descriptions of exotic beasts found in his Guerrino meschino and to analyse his use of these sources.

Language: English
ISSN: 0035-8002


New Evidence Toward Identifying Dante's Enigmatic Lonza (Electronic Bulletin of the Dante Society of America, 1997) [Digital article]

"Of the three beasts in Inferno 1, the lonza's puzzling nature is triple, comprising its etymology, its naturalistic counterpart, and its allegorical significance. Dante described it as swift, slender, and spotted. For centuries, scholars have grappled with unsatisfactory zoological identifications. The lynx, panther, leopard(ess), pard, cheetah, hyena, and even lioness have been proposed or rejected in turn." - Allaire

The author refers to Pliny and the Tuscan Bestiary in an attempt to identify the beast called the lonza.

The Electronic Bulletin of the Dante Society of America Web site can be found at

Language: English


John Romilly Allen

Early Christian Symbolism in Great Britain and Ireland before the Thirteenth Century (London: Whiting & Co., 1887; Series: The Rhind Lectures in Archeology) [Book]

The Rhind Lectures in Archaeology for 1885.

Lecture 5 (Norman Sculpture in the Architectural Details of Churches) deals with the changes in sculptural style brought to Britain by the Normans after 1066. There is some reference to animals on stone sculptures and carvings in churches.

Lecture 6 (The Medieval Bestiaries) deals in general with bestiary subjects, and in particular with bestiary images found in the sculptures and carvings in Norman churches and on pre-Norman sculpted stones. It also discusses the various version of the Physiologus.

Language: English
LCCN: 62-2407; LC: BR133.G6; OCLC: 14453521


On the Norman Doorway at Alne in Yorkshire (London: Journal of the British Archaeological Association, 1886; Series: Volume XLII)

A description of the bestiary subjects carved on the Norman doorway of Alne Church in Yorkshire. Illustrated.

Language: English


Norman Sculpture and the Medieval Bestiaries (Dyfed, Wales: Llanerch Publishers, 1990; Series: Rhind lectures in archaeology for 1885) [Book]

Facsimile edition of Lectures 5 and 6 (pages 236 - 395) of Allen's Early Christian Symbolism in Great Britain and Ireland Before the Thirteenth Century (the Rhind Lectures in Archeology for 1885). Originally published by Whiting & Co., London in 1887.

Lecture 5 (Norman Sculpture in the Architechtural Details of Churches) deals with the changes in sculptural style brought to Britain by the Normans after 1066. There is some reference to animals on stone sculptures and carvings in churches.

Lecture 6 (The Medieval Bestiaries) deals in general with bestiary subjects, and in particulr with beastiary images found in the sculptures and carvings in Norman churches and on pre-Norman sculpted stones.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-947992-96-0; LCCN: 94119128; LC: NB1280.A451990z; DDC: 730/.941/090220; OCLC: 27768920


Judy Allen, Jeanne Griffiths

The Book of the Dragon (Secaus, NJ: Chartwell Books, 1979) [Book]

"...this ilustrated history of the dragon ... includes stories, quotations, speculations and tentative suggestions which show the dragon through the differing interpretations from ancient Greece to Mexico, from Hinduism to the pagan cults, in classical art and stonemasonary." - cover copy

128 pp., 140 color and black and white illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-89009-241-9; LCCN: 79-51123


Lillian Graham Allen

An analysis of the medieval French bestiaries (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1935) [Dissertation]

MA dissertation at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Language: English
OCLC: 39362109


Margaret Allen, Beryl Rowland & Arthur Adamson

Bestiary (Winnipeg: St. John's College Press, University of Manitoba, 1984) [Book]

A loose verse translation by Margaret Allen of the Middle English Bestiary (British Library Arundel MS 292), with and introduction and bibliography by Beryl Rowland and line drawings by Arthur Adamson.

53 p., 4 p. introduction, bibliography.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-920291-00-7; LC: PR1836.A241984; DDC: 821'.1


Philip S. Allen

Turteltaube (Modern Language Notes, 19:6 (June), 1904, page 175-177) [Journal article]

Some notes on the use of the tutledove theme in German poetry, and its sources.

Language: English


Jeffrey L. Allport

Three early Christian interpretations of nature and scripture: the Physiologus, Origen, and Basil (Princeton: Princeton Theological Seminary, 1984) [Dissertation]

M. Div. dissertation at Princeton Theological Seminary.

88 p.

Language: English
OCLC: 22782229


Bo Almqvist

Waterhorse Legends (MLSIT 4086 & 4086B): The Case for and against a Connection between Irish and Nordic Tradition (An Cumann Le Béaloideas Éireann/Folklore of Ireland Society, 1991; Series: Iml. 59, The Fairy Hill Is on Fire! Proceedings of the Symposium on the Supernatural in Irish and Scottish Migratory Legends)

The belief that certain lakes and rivers are inhabited by supernatural horses is age-old and widespread. Not least frequently it is met with in Ireland, Scotland and the Nordic countries. Such waterhorses, or eachanna uisce as they are called in Irish, also figure in many narratives, some of which are in the form of short but fairly close-knit and well- constructed tales of the type folklorists term fabulates or migratory legends. Two such legends in particular - the one which has often been referred to as respectively The Waterhorse as Riding Horse and The Waterhorse as Work- Horse (or alternatively The Waterhorse as Plough Horse) - have been considered by several scholars - notably C.W. von Sydow and Brita Egardt - to be of ‘Celtic’ origin.’ This assumption rests mainly on certain similarities between Nordic and Scottish forms of the respective legend types, while, until recently, little attention has been paid to the Irish material. This is understandable, since but a fraction of the Irish source material had appeared in print and since the manuscript material was inaccessible at the time the above- mentioned studies were undertaken. - [Author]

Language: English
DOI: 10.2307/20522380


Klaus Alpers

Untersuchungen zum griechischen Physiologus und den Kyraniden (Hamburg: Friedrich Wittig Verlag, 1984) [Book]

"Sonderdruck aus 'All Geschopf ist Zung' und Mund' : Vestigia Bibliae 6."

92 p., bibliography.

Language: German
DDC: 881A; OCLC: 16931513


Saint Ambrose, John J. Savage, trans.

Hexameron, Paradise, and Cain and Abel (New York: Fathers of the Church, Inc., 1961; Series: The Fathers of the Church, 42) [Book]

An English translation of the Hexameron by Ambrose, homilies on the first six days of the Genesis story of creation. The homilies for the fifth and sixth day describe many beasts which are found in the bestiary.

Language: English
LC: BR60F3A56


Saint Ambrose, C. Schenkl, ed.

Hexaemeron (Vienna: Corpus Scriptorum Ecclesiasticorum Latinorum, 1937; Series: Vol XXXII, Part 1) [Book]

Language: Latin


Manuel Ambrosio Sanchez

Los bestiarios en la predicacion castellana medieval (in Actas del III Congreso de la Asociacion Hispanica de Literatura Medieval, I II., Salamanca, Spain: Biblioteca Espanola del Siglo XV, Departamento de Literatura Espanola e Hispanoamericana, 1994, page 915-921) [Book article]

Language: Spanish
ISBN: 84-920305-0-X


Ambrogio Amelli

Miniature sacre e profane dell'anno 1023, illustranti l'enciclopedia medioevale di Rabano Mauro, riprodotte in 133 tavole cromolitografiche da un codice di Montecassino [no 132] (Montecassino: Tipo-litografia di Montecassino, 1896; Series: Documenti per la storia della miniatura e dell'iconografia) [Book]

The manuscript of De rerum naturis or De universo of Hrababus Mauris at Montecassino (Cod. 132).

2 p. introduction, 133 color plates.

Language: Italian
LCCN: 03-6649; LC: ND3399.H8; DDC: 745; OCLC: 10186313


Beatrice Amelotti

Note su una fonte minore del Liber de exemplis et similitudinibus rerum di Giovanni da San Gimignano: il Physiologus (RursuSpicae, 2019; Series: Volume 2)

{p> The Dominican preacher Giovanni da San Gimignano was born between 1260 and 1270 and died after 1333. He wrote mainly sermons. Four collections are attributed to him without doubt: Sermones de mortuis, Sermones de tempore, Sermones de Sanctis and a Quadragesimale. However, the Liber de exemplis et similitudinibus rerum, a moralized encyclopedia in 10 books, reached the largest diffusion. The aim of this paper is to identify the quotations of the Physiologus B in this work and to point out the intermediary source through which they were probably quoted in the De proprietatibus rerum by Bartholomaeus Anglicus. Books IV and V are dedicated to the zoological matters, but only Book v presents some quotations from the Physiologus ; therefore, it is the only one considered here. - [Abstract]

Language: Italian
DOI: 10.4000/rursuspicae.423


Sahar Amer

A Fox Is Not Always a Fox! Or How Not to Be a Renart in Marie de France's "Fables" (Rocky Mountain Review of Language and Literature, 51:1, 1997, page 9-20) [Journal article]

In her fable collection known as the Esope, the first French female poet departs from the typological literature of her contemporaries and rejects the univocal and fixed animal symbolism of her period in order to create something new. I have chosen to focus on the representation of the fox since he, perhaps more than any other animal in the twelfth century, had a well established and well known symbolism, both in the vernacular and in the more didactic literatures. A study of the portrayal of the fox in Marie de France's Fables will thereby allow us to understand more fully the poet's innovation and her daring subversion of available models. However, the example of the fox is but one among many in Marie's recueil, and my conclusions apply to other animals and other aspects of the Esope. In other words, the example of the fox serves only as a prolegomenon to a more extended study of the representation of characters in Marie's Fables, as well as of the symbol-ism in her text, and of Marie's poetic craft in general. - [Author]

Language: English


Pierre Amiet

Le bestiaire des sceaux de l'ancien Orient (in Pierre Dehaye, ed., Le bestiaire: des monnaies des sceaux et des médailles, Paris, 1974, page 1-11) [Book article]

Language: French


Amots Dafni, et al

In search of traces of the mandrake myth: the historical, and ethnobotanical roots of its vernacular names (Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine, 2021; Series: 17:68)

Mandrake (Mandragora spp.) is one of the most famous medicinal plant in western cultures since Biblical times and throughout written history. In many cultures, mandrake is related to magic and witchcraft, which is said to have a psychosomatic effect (especially when mandrake contains narcotic compounds) in addition to the pharmacological influence, as occurs with other narcotic magical plants. Due to its unique properties and related myths, it is not surprising that this plant has many names in many languages.This paper presents an attempt to reconstruct the historical, ethnobotanical, and folkloristic roots of 292 vernacular names of Mandragora spp. in forty-one languages. We used the plant’s morphological data, philology, myths and legends, medicinal properties and uses, as well as historical evidence and folkloric data, to explain meaning, origin, migration, and history of the plant’s names.

Language: English
DOI: 10.1186/s13002-021-00494-5


M. D. Anderson

Animal Carvings in British Churches (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1938) [Book]

99 pp. bibliography, illustrations, index.

Language: English
LCCN: 39027575; LC: NA3680.A6; OCLC: 640043


History and Imagery in British Churches (London: John Murray, 1971) [Book]

308 p., 49 plates (1 fold), illustrations, map.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-7195-2232-3; LCCN: 70873898; LC: BR744.A58; DDC: 247


The Imagery of British Churches (London: John Murray, 1955) [Book]

An extensive survey of the symbols, emblems and attributes depicted in the sculpture and woodwork of medieval British churches. There are many animal references, and one chapter entirely on "The Mirror of Nature". An appendix gives a "List of Animals Identifiable in Churches" with references to the text.

It is therefore the popular understanding of medieval imagery, rather than its doctrinal or aesthetic aspects, that forms the theme of this book which aims at helping its readers to look at the structure and decoraion of medieval churches through the eyes of people like themselves who lived when these churches were being built; to become in imagination those for whom the the picture books of the ecclesiatical arts were designed. ... Since, even if we disregard extremes, we cannot see the whole picture through one pair of eyes, let us attempt a sythesis of three points of view: those of the parson who served an ordinary parish church, the craftsman who built or adorned it, and the parishioner who general paid for the work. I will first try to show the ways in which such men were likely to have affected church-building and the design of religious imagery. Then we must consider the choice and arrangement of subjects according to principles evolved by scholarly theologians... Finally, I will describe the individual subjects included in a normal cycle of illustrations to this Picture Book... - [Author]

240 p., 24 p. of black & white photographs, illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English
LCCN: 55002979; LC: BR133.G6A56; OCLC: 3330793


The Medieval Carver (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1935) [Book]

A discussion of stone and wood carving in Britain, mostly in churches. Chapter 7 deals specifically with beast and bestiary-related carvings, though there are scattered references to bestiary themes throughout. Chapters: The Masons; Contemporary Scenes; The Bible; Life of the Virgin, Saints and Angels; Allegory, Romance and Satire; Bestiaries and Beasts; Folliage Sculpture.

187 pp., bibliography, general index, index of place names, a few black and white photographic plates.

Language: English
LCCN: 35017483; LC: NB463.A5; DDC: 734.0942; OCLC: 1223271


Misericords: Medieval Life in English Woodcarving (Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1954) [Book]

Services were long and frequent in the Middle Ages, and monks and canons had to stand upright longer than they liked. So, comiserating with them, the carpenters made small seats on the underside of the tip-up seats in chancell stalls on which one could sit, or against which at least one could lean while apparently standing. The function and position being what it was, no strict control seems to have been kept over what the carver wished to represent to decorate these miserere or misericord seats. The author of this book tells illuminatingly and entertainingly of the many types of subjects which appear on these seats, from saints and biblical scenes to the romances of Alexander the Great and tristram and Iseult, and from the records of everyday life: boat building, football, and so on, to birds and beasts and monsters. - [Cver copy]

Includes a discussion of the craftsmen who did the carving, dating of the works, stylistic development and sources.

30 pp. of text, 48 pages of black and white photographic plates.

Language: English
LCCN: 55004523; LC: NA5075.A5; OCLC: 648854


Susan Anderson

Mirrors and Fears: Humans in the Bestiary (Arizona State University, 2004)

The medieval bestiary is often simply described as a moralized "encyclopedia of animals," however, these so-called "books of beasts" were made for humans, by humans, about humans. It is therefore surprising that one common pictorial subject of the bestiary has been left unexamined: humans. By viewing bestiary images through this lens, one may easily see man's underlying and unresolved struggle to maintain dominance over the beasts, and the Others projected onto them, thereby ensuring that "the (hu)man" remains a discrete definition. ... Just as in life, the human figures in the bestiary struggle to establish unquestioned dominion, only to be constantly undercut by the abject. By using a psychoanalytic approach to the human bodies of the bestiary, this study will explore how this imagery reflects the ambiguous position and definition of the human. - [Publisher]

Language: English


Lawrens Andrewe, Frederick J. Furnivall

The noble lyfe & nature of man, Of bestes, serpentys, fowles & fisshes y be moste knowen (1894; Series: The Boke of Nurture) [Book]

A very rare black-letter book, without date, and hitherto undescribed, except perhaps incorrectly by Ames (vol. 1, p. 412, and vol. 3, p. 1531), has been lent to me by Mr. Algernon Swinburne. Its title is given above: 'The noble lyfe and natures of man' is in large red letters, and the rest in smaller black ones, all surrounded by woodcuts of the wonderul animals, mermaids, serpents, birds, quadrupeds with men's and women's heads, a stork with its neck tied in a knot, and each other beatss 'y be most knowen.' The illustrations to each chapter are wonderfully quaint. The author of it says in his Prologus: 'In the name of ower sauiour criste Iesu, maker & redemour of al mankynd, I Lawrens Andrewe of the towne of Calis haue translated for Johannes does-borrowe, booke prenter in the cite of Andwarpe, this present volume deuyded in thre partes, which were neuer before in no maternall langage prentyd tyl now .'

As it is doubtful whether another copy of the book is known, I extract from from the Third Part of this incomplete one such notices of the fish mentioned by Russell or Wynkyn de Worde, as it contains, with a few others for curiousity's sake. - [Review]

Language: English


Lawrens Andrewe, James L. Matterer, trans.

Fantastic Fish of the Middle Ages ( [Web page]

A translation of Lawrens Andrewe's "The noble lyfe & nature of man, Of bestes, serpentys, fowles & fisshes y be moste knowen". A late-medieval manuscript translated into modern English, with period illustrations. Here are the fantastic and incredible fish of the Middle Ages, which populated both the waters and the imagination of the Medieval world. Real creatures still familar to us, such as the salmon and the crayfish will be found here, but you will also read of such fabulous specimens as the Abremon, which propagated without intercourse, the Ezox, so large that a four-horsed cart could not carry one away, and the Nereydes, sea monsters that cried whenever one of them died.

Fantastic Fish of the Middle Ages is from Lawrens Andrewe's "The noble lyfe & nature of man, Of bestes, serpentys, fowles & fisshes y be moste knowen" as reprinted in The Boke of Nurture by Frederick J. Furnivall, 1894. Andrewe's original work was printed sometime between 1400 & 1550.

The modern English translations of Andrewe's text are by James L. Matterer.

Language: English


Marie Angel

Beasts in Heraldry: Twenty Heraldic Creatures in Full Color (USA: The Stephen Greene Press, 1974) [Book]

Twenty heraldic creatures in full color, introduced by the Richmond Herald of Arms.

Language: English


Marcel Angheben

Le combat du guerrier contre un animal fantastique: a propos de trois chapiteaux de Vezelay (Bulletin monumental, 152:3, 1994, page 245-256) [Journal article]

Romanesque sculpture on capitals in Vezelay, France.

Language: French



A Book of Creatures (A Book of Creatures, 2023)

This web site appears to be the work of one (unnamed) person. It is a blog with numerous articles on real, mythical and fabulous creatures. The articles seem to be carefully researched and include references. The creatures come from all over the world.

Our imagination has always been our greatest ally, and our worst enemy. In the face of the unknown, we populated it with creatures of all shapes and sizes, from minuscule spirits to gigantic cosmic monsters. These entities have shared our world ever since we earned the capacity to wonder. Their stories are told here. - [Author]

Language: English


Liber Amaratis : Physiologus (Liber Amaratis)

The Armenian Physiologus from the edition by Marr with an English translation by Bedrosian.

Language: English/Armenian



Dialogus creaturarum moralizatus (in J.G.Th. Grässe, L.A.J.R. Houwen. ed., Die beiden ältesten lateinischen Fabelbücher des Mittelalters, Tübingen, 1880, page 125-280) [Book article]

A series of moralized dialogs between pairs of natural beings and/or objects, in Latin. The beings and objects include astronomical objects, the four elements, geographical features of the Earth, plants, stones and animals.

A digital edition published by Onderzoekschool Medievistiek (Netherlands Research School for Medieval Studies), 1998.

Facsimile (a printed edition with colored drawings) is available from the Universiteitsbibliotheek Gent.

Language: Latin
LCCN: 49030818


Ver Antik

Simbolikata na 'Fiziologot' i naseto narodno tvorestvo (Midwest Folklore, 4 (7-8), 1971, page 47-67) [Journal article]

Symbols in the Physiologus and Macedonian folklore.

Language: Macedonian


Luboš Antonín

Bestiár: bájná zvírata, zivlové bytosti, monstra, obludy a nestvury v knizní ilustraci konce stredoveké Evropy (Praha: Pudorys, 2003; Series: Tsurah) [Book]

Mythical animals in art.

372 p., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Czech
ISBN: 80-86018-17-2; LCCN: 2003477689; LC: N7745.A5; OCLC: 52972846


Maria Experanza Aragones Estella

The Image of Evil in Romanesque Art of the Way of Saint James in Navarra (Navarra: Universidad de Navarra, 1994) [Dissertation]

PhD dissertation at the Universidad de Navarra, Spain.

"This Ph.D. dissertation is a study of the images of evil in the Way of Saint James of Navarra and the Romanesque period (XI and XII centuries). These representations are compared with those located in other points of the Romanesque style in Navarra, in Spanish and European churches: especially Romanesque churches in France located in the Pilgrim's Road to Santiago. Some representations are compared with images that belong to other artistic periods; for example, pre-Romanesque images from Beatos and illuminated books from X and XII centuries or Gothic images from Spanish or French churches, are included. This study is organized in five chapters, which include in a thematic way the group of evil images in Navarra. The first one is dedicated to the devil's image in Biblical scenes: the devil in the Old Testament, New Testament and Apocalypse. We also try to study the devil in the hagiographic scenes: Saint Michael and Saint George slaying the dragon and the devil in Saint Andrew's life. Finally we discuss isolated images of the devil located in corbels of religious buildings. The second chapter refers to the image of Hell in the Romanesque art, sculpted as the cauldron and the mouth of Leviathan or a monster's mouth. Third chapter is about the deadly sins Lust, Avarice, Gluttony, Sloth, Pride and Wrath. We have not found any representations of Envy. In the fourth chapter we refer to the negative bestiaries that include beasts with evil significance, not only fantastic but also real animals. Finally, in the fifth chapter we study profane music and its negative significance. In the conclusion we summarize the main characteristics of the dissertation and we expose influences of classical art, and Jewish and Islamic scatology influences on the Way of Saint James in Navarra. Finally we prove that those artistic forms are influenced by the customs, folklore and popular culture." - abstract

450 p.

Language: Spanish


Luisa Cogliati Arano

Dal "Fisiologo" al "Bestiario" di Leonardo (Rivista di storia della miniatura, 1:2 (1996-97), 1998, page 239-248) [Journal article]

Language: French


Fonti figurative del Bestiario di Leonardo (Arte lombarda: Rivista di storia dell'arte, n.s.62, 1982, page 151-160) [Journal article]

Language: Italian


Alexandra Ardeleanu-Jansen

Der bunte Söller von Schloss Streversdorp/Château Graaf : Überlegungen zu einem spätmittelalterlichen Raumprogramm (in Burg- und Schlosskapellen, Stuttgart: K. Theiss, 1995, page 109-117) [Book article]

Research on the iconographic program of the murals of the principal room of the Graaf Castle in Montzen: the mixture of Christian scenes and allegorical representations related to the text of Physiologus, the symbols of the love and the virtues. A certain number of scenes are accompanied by inscriptions.

Language: German


Aristotle, Richard Cresswell, trans.

Aristotle's History of Animals in Ten Books (London: George Bell, 1887)

An English translation of De animalibus by Aristotle.

The following Translation of Aristotle's History of Animals has been made from the text of Schneider. In a work of considerable difficulty it is hardly possible entirely to avoid errors; but it is hoped that those which have escaped are neither numerous nor important. The notes of Schneider have been consulted throughout; and in places of difficulty the English translation by Taylor, the French of Camus, and the German of Strack, have been severally referred to. - [Translator's preface]

Language: English


Aristotle, D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson, trans.

The History of Animals (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1910)

An English translation of Aristotle's De animalibus.

Language: English


Carmen Elen Armijo

El bestiario medieval: Una clave para la interpretacion del Libro de los gatos (in Lillian von der Walde, Concepcion Company & Aurelio Gonzalez, ed., Caballeros, monjas y maestros en la Edad Media: Actas de las V Jornadas Medievales, Mexico City: Medievalia 13: Colegio de Mexico, University Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, 1996, page 205-219) [Book article]

Language: Spanish
ISBN: 968-36-5374-X


Mary Allyson Armistead

The Middle English Physiologus: A Critical Translation and Commentary (Blacksburg, VA: Virginia Polytechnic Institute and University, 2001) [Dissertation]

Thesis submitted to the Faculty of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in English Literature, April 12, 2001, Blacksburg, Virginia.

"Considering the vast importance of the Physiologus tradition in the Middle Ages, one would expect to find that scholars have edited, translated, and studied all of the various versions of the Physiologus. While most of the Latin bestiaries and versions of the Physiologus have been edited, translated, studied, and glossed, the Middle English (ME) Physiologusthe only surviving version of the Physiologus in Middle Englishhas neither been translated nor strictly studied as a literary text. In light of the Physiologus traditions importance, it would seem that the only version of the Physiologus that was translated into Middle English would be quite significant to the study of medieval literature and to the study of English literature as a whole. Thus, in light of this discovery, the current edition attempts to spotlight this frequently overlooked text by providing an accurate translation of the ME Physiologus, critical commentary, and historical background. Such efforts are put forth with the sincere hope that such a critical translation may win this significant version of the Physiologus its due critical and literary attention." - Armistead

Language: English


Peter Armour

Griffins (in John Cherry, ed., Mythical Beasts, London: British Museum Press/Pomegranite Artbooks, 1995, page 72-103) [Book article]

A discussion of the griffin from antiquity through the Middle Ages. Illustrated in color and black & white.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-87654-606-8


Lilian Armstrong

The Illustration of Pliny's Historia naturalis: Manuscripts before 1430 (Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, 46, 1983, page 19-39) [Journal article]

The Historia naturalis of Pliny the Elder has been characterized by one historian of science as 'perhaps the most important single source extant for the history of ancient civilization'. That it was also important for the history of the later Middle Ages can now be gathered from three hitherto unpublished illuminated manuscripts of the Historia naturalis from the Gothic period which are the subject of the following discussion. The sources and nature of the iconographic cycle in their miniatures are the primary concern of this study, but the historical and artistic characteristics of the manuscripts must also be explored in order to appreciate fully their significance. - [Author]

The manuscripts described are:

The article includes 10 pages of plates illustrating the manuscripts.

Language: English


Arnoldus Saxo, Emil Stange, ed.

Die Encyklopädie des Arnoldus Saxo, zum ersten Mal nach einem Erfurter Codex herausgegeben von Professor Dr. Emil Stange (Erfurt, Germany: Druck von Fr. Bartholomäus, 1907)

An edition of De floribus rerum naturalium, an encyclopedia by Arnoldus Saxo, with a Latin transcription and notes in German, based on manuscript Universitätsbibliothek Erfurt, Dep. Erf. CA. 8° 77.

Language: Latin, German


M. Arnott, I. Beavan, J. Geddes

The Aberdeen Bestiary: an Online Medieval Text (Computers & Texts [CTI Textual Studies Newsletter], 11, 1996) [Journal article]

"The prime objectives of the project (now well underway) are to mount the Aberdeen Bestiary (text and images) on the WWW, at the same time providing a surrogate for use by a wider, though still broadly academic, constituency. This is being achieved by supplying accompanying sets of commentaries, a transcription and a translation of the Latin text."

A description of an early stage of the project and its methodology.

Language: English


W. Geoffrey Arnott

Birds in the Ancient World from A to Z (New York: Routledge, 2012)

Birds in the Ancient World from A to Z gathers together the ancient information available, listing all the names that ancient Greeks gave their birds and all their descriptions and analyses. W. Geoffrey Arnott identifies as many of them as possible in the light of modern ornithological studies. The ancient Greek bird names are transliterated into English script, and all that the ancients said about birds is presented in English. This book is accordingly the first complete discussion of ancient bird names that will be accessible to readers without ancient Greek. The only large-scale examination of ancient birds for seventy years, the book has an exhaustive bibliography (partly classical scholarship and partly ornithological) to encourage further study, and provides students and ornithologists with the definitive study of ancient birds. - [Publisher]

Language: English
ISBN: 978-0-415-54088-9


José Julio García Arranz

El Physiologus como fuente gráfico-textual de la emblemática animalística de la Edad Moderna (Janus, 2014; Series: Volume 3)

The Physiologus, a collection of Christian allegories drawn from the natural properties attributed to certain animals and plants, real or fantastic, composed in Greek language somewhere in the Eastern Mediterranean -Alexandria or Syria- between the second and fourth centuries of our era, has generated a vast literature since the late 19th century around its origin, authorship and versions in different languages. However, except for a few honorable exceptions, had not yet been addressed in depth the influence that this booklet was able to exert on the literary-visual genre of books of emblems from the 16th century on. Usually considered by critics as major source of the bookish Emblematics animalistic side, in this paper we aim to address in detail the true impact of the Physiologus reached both in pictures and allegorical interpretations of the emblems which, a priori, seem to keep some kind of thematic relationship with the primitive Christian text. - [Abstract]

Language: Spanish


Cecco d'Ascoli

L'Acerba (Intangible Press, 2010)

This is a transcription of L'Acerba, a fourteenth century compendium of natural science in Italian by Cecco d’Ascoli.

Language: Italian


L'Acerba (Wentworth Press, 2016)

This is a transcription of L'Acerba, a fourteenth century compendium of natural science in Italian by Cecco d’Ascoli.

Language: Italian


L'Acerba (Biblioteca dei Classici Italiani di Giuseppe Bonghi, 1996)

An online edition of L'Acerba by Cecco d’Ascoli. Note: The original site hosting the edition seems to no longer exist; the linked site is on Web Archive.

Language: Italian


Cecco d'Ascoli, Marco Albertazzi, ed.

Acerba età (La Finestra editrice, 2002)

An edition of L'Acerba by Cecco d’Ascoli, with commentary.

Language: Italian
ISBN: 978-88-88097-21-3


Cecco d'Ascoli, A. Crespi, ed.

L'Acerba (La Vita Felice, 2011)

Considered the masterpiece of Cecco d’Ascoli, "L'Acerba" is a poem in sixth rhyme, left unfinished at the beginning of the fifth canto after Cecco was condemned to the stake "for errors against the faith". It brings together astronomical, astrological, alchemical and naturalistic data, mostly of Arab origin, which Cecco contrasts with the "false" science of Dante's Commedia and above all with the totalizing need of Thomistic derivation, which that work animates and pervades. - [Publisher]

Language: Italian
ISBN: 978-88-7799-383-0


Cecco d'Ascoli, Giampiero Giorgi, ed.

L'Acerba (Un Passo avanti, 2019)

The poem L'Acerba together with Dante's Commedia is the best-known work of the Middle Ages. However, unlike Dante's work, it has had very contrasting and controversial opinions. There were those who praised it, recognizing in it the precursor seeds of scientific disciplines, which then had their full development in the modern era, and those who outraged it by even condemning it to the stake together with its author. This is the edition that was read in its entirety on 27 April in Piazza del Popolo in Ascoli Piceno as part of the events Ascoli celebrates Cecco for the 750th anniversary of the birth of the illustrious fellow citizen. Francesco Stabili - Cecco d’Ascoli was convicted of heresy and burned alive in Florence on 16 September 1327. - [Publisher]

Language: Italian
ISBN: 978-88-942631-2-1


Cecco d'Ascoli, Diane Murphy, trans.

The Bitter Age (Ascoli Piceno, Italy: Capponi Editore, 2015)

An English translation of Cecco d’Ascoli's L'Acerba with commentary.

Language: English/Italian
ISBN: 978-88-970666-8-2


Cecco d'Ascoli, Pasquale Rosario

L'Acerba etas (Lanciano, 1916)

An edition of L'Acera etas with introduction, notes and bibliography.

Language: Italian


S. P. Ashby

The Role of Zooarchaeology in the Intepretation of Socioeconomic Status: A Discussion with Reference to Medieval Europe (in A. Pluskowski, ed., Medieval Animals, Cambridge: Archaeological Review from Cambridge 18, 2002, page 37-59) [Book article]

Language: English


Genette Ashby-Beach

Les Fables de Marie de France: Essai de Grammaire Narrative (in Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed., Epopee Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Societe Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 13-28) [Book article]

"Dans les recherches sur la narration, [A. J.] Greimas essaie de decouvrir les regles qui sous-tendent divers genres litteraires et populaires, et par la, les regles de tout recit. Nous nous proposons d'appliquer ses theories de la grammaire narrative a l'Esope de Marie de France. Par une serie d'exercices pratiques nous esperons decouvrir les regles qui regissent quelques fables de Marie. Une telle grammaire, quand elle sera complete, nous appredra non seulement comment fonctionne la fable de Marie mais egalement comment fonctionne la fable comme genre. Puisque le present travail n'est qu'un premier pas vers la formulation d'une grammaire narrative des Fables de Marie, quatre fables seulement retiendront notre attention: "De Cane et umbra" (V), "De Vulpe et umbra lunae" (LVIII), "De Lupo et agno" (II), et "De Cane et ove" (IV). Nous passons sous silence la question de savoir s'il existe une grammaire de base de toutes les Fables de Marie." - Ashby-Beach

Language: French


John Ashton

Curious Creatures in Zoology (New York: Cassel Publishing, 1890) [Book]

"Our ancestors were content with what was given them, and being, as a rule, a stay-athome race, they could not confute the stories they read in books. That age of faith must have had its comforts, for no man could deny the truth of what he was told. But now that modern travel has subdued the globe, and inquisitive strangers have poked their noses into every portion of the world, the old order changeth, giving place to new, and, gradually, the old stories are forgotten. It is to rescue some of them from the oblivion into which they were fast falling, that I have written, or compiled, this book. It is not given to every one to be able to consult the old Naturalists; and, besides, most of them are written in Latin, and to read them through is partly unprofitable work, as they copy so largely one from another. But, for the general reader, selections can be made, and, if assisted by accurate reproductions of the very quaint wood engravings, a book may be produced which, I venture to think, will not prove tiring, even to a superficial reader. ... All the old Naturalists copied from one another, and thus compiled their writings. Pliny took from Aristotle, others quote Pliny, and so on; but it was reserved for the age of printing to render their writings available to the many, as well as to represent the creatures they describe by pictures (the books of the unlearned), which add so much piquancy to the text. Mine is not a learned disquisition. It is simply a collection of zoological curiosities, put together to suit the popular taste of to-day, and as such only should it be critically judged." - introduction

Contents include: Amazons; Pygmies; Giants; Wild Men; The Sphynx; Animal Lore; The Manticora; The Centaur; The Gorgon; The Unicorn; Were-Wolves; The Leontophonus; Cattle Feeding Backwards; Animal Medicine; The Hoopoe; The Halcyon; Woolly Hens; Four-Footed Duck Fish; Senses of Fishes; Wormes and Dragons; etc.

Language: English


J. W. H. Atkins

Early English Translation (Cambrideg: Cambridge University Press, 1907; Series: Cambridge History of English Literature, Volume 1)

Includes some information on the Middle English Bestiary in British Library, Arundel MS 292.

Language: English


Aaron Atsma

Theoi Project: a Guide to the Ancient Greek Pantheon of Gods (Aaron Atsma, 2000-03) [Web page]

"Here you will find individual entries the various divinities & monsters containing quotes sourced from a wide and growing variety of Classical Texts. Many are also illustrated with pictures from C5th BC Greek Vase Painting."

On the Bestiary page: "Greek mythology was filled with a wide variety of monsters ranging from Dragons, Giants, Demons and Ghosts, to the multiformed Centaurs, Sphinxes and Griffins. There were also fabulous wild beasts - such as the Nemean Lion, the golden-fleeced Ram and the winged horse Pegasus. Even mankind was not exempt with fabulous tribes like the Libyan Umbrella-Foots, one-eyed Arimaspians, African Dog-Heads, and puny African Pygmies."

Language: English


Augustine, Philip Schaff, ed.

St. Augustine's City of God and Christian Doctrine (Buffalo, NY: The Christian Literature Publishing Co., 1897; Series: Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, First Series, Volume 2) [Book]

Augustine's City of God was highly regarded and influential in the Middle Ages. This is an English translation, combined with Augustine's On Christian Doctrine. Augustine's discussion of animals in several chapters on City of God were quoted in some of the bestiaries.

Language: English


Sami Aydin

The Syriac Tradition of the Physiologus (Turnhout: Brepols, 2021; Series: The Multilingual Physiologus. Studies in the Oldest Greek Recension and Its Translations)

Presentation of the Syriac versions of the Physiologus, description of the extant manuscripts, and the reception of the Physiologus in the Syriac tradition. Edition and translation of the chapters on pelican and panther. - [Abstract]

Language: English


Marino Ayerra Redin, Nilda Guglielmi

El fisiologo; bestiario medieval (Buenos Aires: Editorial Universitaria de Beunos Aires, 1971; Series: Coleccion los fundamentales) [Book]

"Para realizar la presente edicion se ha utilizado: Physiologus latinus. Versio Y. Editado por Francis J. Carmody." Traducido por Marino Ayerra Redin y Nilda Guglielmi. Introduccion y notas de Nilda Guglielmi.

107 p. illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Spanish
LC: PA4273.P8; OCLC: 26271932


Kerry Ayre

Medieval English Figurative Roundels (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003; Series: Corpus Vitrearum Medii Aevi, Great Britain, Summary Catalogue) [Book]

This is a comprehensive catalogue of the large numbers of stained glass roundels produced in England between the late thirteenth century and the mid sixteenth centuries. The majority are decorated with religious images. However, roundels were commonly used in medieval homes and many of the designs provide glimpses of contemporary life and humour - including hybrid creatures.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-19-726251-1


Janet Backhouse

The Illuminated Page: Ten Centuries of Manuscript Painting in the British Library (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1997) [Book]

"In this new, lavishly illustrated survey drawn from the collections of the British Library, Janet Backhouse provides a comprehensive introduction to an exciting and colourful subject, ranging from the breathtaking intricacies of the 7th-century Lindifarne Gospels to the virtuoso pages of Renaissance and later artists." - publisher

Includes images from and descriptions of several bestiary-related manuscripts.

Janet Backhouse is Curator of Illuminated Manuscripts at the British Library.

240 pp., 215 colour plates, bibliography, manuscript index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8020-4346-1


Medieval Birds in the Sherborne Missal (Toronto / London: University of Toronto Press / British Library, 2001) [Book]

The Sherborne Missal [early 15th century, British Library Additional MS 74326], one of the most important surviving medieval English manuscripts, contains a wealth of marginal illustrations of wild birds, painted with skill and vivacity. Some of the birds are imaginary creations of the artist but the majority are evidently real birds, although not all of these can be identified with certainty. All forty-eight are reproduced here and most are well observed and readily recognizable. The majority are accompanied by their names, written out in middle English, offering and almost unparalleled source of vernacular bird names in common use during the generation after Chaucer wrote his Canterbury Tales. This is the first time that all birds from the Sherborne Missal have been reproduced together in sequence and this beautifully illustrated book provides an insight into a fascinating aspect of England's natural history in the middle ages." - [Publisher]

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8020-8434-6; LC: ND3375.S44B2952001; DDC: 745.6'7'0942


David Badke

The Bestiary of Anne Walshe (David Badke, 2001) [Web page]

A discussion of the codicology, paleography and imagery of the Bestiary of Anne Walshe, Copenhagen Gl. kgl. S. 1633 4*.

Language: English


The Old English Physiologus in the Exeter Book (David Badke, 2002) [Digital article]

A discussion of the three-episode Phyiologus poem found in the Exeter Book manuscript (Exeter Dean and Chapter MS 3501).

Language: English


Jana Bailey

Animal passions: animal behavior and human sexual morality in medieval bestiaries and mid-nineteenth-century periodicals (Baltimore: University of Maryland, 1996) [Dissertation]

MA dissertation at the University of Maryland.

268 p.

Language: English
OCLC: 47901168


Lorrayne Y. Baird

Christus gallinaceus: A Chaucerian Enigma; or the Cock as Symbol for Christ in the Middle Ages (Studies in Iconography, 9, 1983, page 19-39) [Journal article]

Language: English


The Role of the Cock in Fertility and Eroticism in Classical Antiquity and the Middle Ages" (Studies in Iconography, 7-8, 1981-2, page 81-112) [Journal article]

Language: English


Sevde Bakaner

The Aviary and British Library, MS Additional 24097 (Academia, 2017)

A book solely concerned with birds, the Aviary was written by Hugh of Fouilloy, a French cleric from Amiens, in the first half of the twelfth century. Consisting of sixty chapters divided into two parts, his work contains twenty-seven birds allegorically discussed. The Bible constitutes the main bulk of Hugh’s sources that include St. Gregory the Great’s Moralia in Job, St. Isidore’s Etymologiae and Hrabanus Maurus’s De rerum naturis (also known as De universo). An unillustrated manuscript from the thirteenth century, British Library, Additional MS 24097, contains Latin moral treatises, the Aviary and bestiary extracts. As Clark notes, it is not at all uncommon to find texts of theological nature (and bestiary material) accompanying the Aviary.

Language: English


Craig Baker

Le Bestiaire, Version longue attribuée à Pierre de Beauvais (Paris: Librairie Honoré Champion, 2010; Series: Classiques français du Moyen Age, N°163.1 vol.)

An edition of the of Pierre de Beauvais (long version).

Language: French


Etude et edition critique de la version longue du 'Bestiaire' attribuee a Pierre de Beauvais (Paris: Université Paris-Sorbonne, 2004) [Dissertation]

According to its prologue, the Long Version of the Bestiary is the work of Pierre de Beauvais. Through the study of texts that can be surely attributed to Pierre, one may determine his period of activity with relative precision (1180-1218) and identify certain characteristic work habits. Chronological indications and the relationship between the two versions of the Bestiary indicate that the Short Version dates from before 1206 and is surely by Pierre. A careful examination of the sources of the Long Version (Le Lucidaire, The Letter of Priester John, and Gossouin de Metz's Image du monde) and the manner in which they are treated, on the other hand, leads to conclude that the second redaction dates from 1246-1260 and is not by Pierre. This conclusion is confirmed by the comparative study of the two works, which reveals important differences. While focusing on the two versions of the Bestiary, I have also sought to situate the bestiary with regards to the other branches of medieval learning, especially the encyclopedia and biblical exegesis. Although close to these two genres, the bestiary possesses its own specificity and cannot be assimilated to either. The present edition constitutes the first critical edition of this version of the text. It is based on the five known and accessible manuscript witnesses, as well as on an indepth study of the manuscript tradition, from the Physiologus and the Short Version to the Bestiary of Love by Richard de Fournival. The edition is followed by copious textual notes, indices of animals and proper names, and a glossary. A transcription of the Malines manuscript, the best witness of the Short Version, is provided in an appendix. My new edition and study of the text are intended to allow for a better understanding of this important work and of its place in the intellectual and artistic evolutions that marked the 13th century. - [Abstract]

PhD dissertation, 2004. 816 p.

Language: French
PQDD: AAT3117592


Retour sur la Filiation des Bestiaires de Richard de Fournival et eu Pseudo-Pierre de Beauvais (Romania, 2009; Series: Vol. 127, No. 505/506 (1/2))

Sans doute le plus original des bestiaires médiévaux de langue française, le Bestiaire d'amour de Richard de Fournival reprend la tradition issue du Physiologus, dont il détourne l’allégorie spirituelle pour en faire le véhicule d’une requéte amoureuse qu'il adresse a sa Dame. Si, au milieu du 13th siécle, un tel mélange d’érudition et de galanterie n’était pas absolument inédit — des poétes lyriques comme Rigaut de Barbezieux et Thibaut de Champagne avaient déja emprunteé cette voie en intégrant dans leurs poémes des images animales et une démarche symbolique qui renvoient au bestiaire traditionnel —, la nouveauté de Richard de Fournival consiste a abandonner le chant pour la prose et a donner a son ceuvre allure d’un véritable traité, la rapprochant ainsi davantage du discours savant qui lui sert de modéle. Cette proximité avec la tradition du bestiaire moralisé parait d’autant plus remarquable que, selon la critique moderne, Pauteur ne s'est pas contenté d’adapter la démarche herméneutique qui caractérise le genre dans son ensemble, mais se serait directement inspiré, en de nombreux passages, d’un texte précis : la version longue du Bestiaire attribuée a Pierre de Beauvais. - [Author]

Language: French


De la Version courte à la Version longue du Bestiaire de Pierre de Beauvais: Nature et rôle de la citation (Le Moyen Français, 2005; Series: Volume 55-56)

Any reworking of an earlier literary text with a view to augmenting it — whether it is a continuation, a sequel or a revamp — necessarily involves two opposing practices: |imitation and |innovation. If it did not create a sense of continuity, relying on a unity of tone, style or subject, the text of the second author would seem completely foreign to the original work instead of forming its complement. But by the very nature of the intervention, and whatever its fidelity to the spirit of the original, the reworker necessarily modifies the work in a way more or less profound and imparts to it a structure, an orientation, a new sense. The relationship between a hypertext and its hypotext is characterized by a tension between resemblance and difference, between continuity and rupture. It is the tension between these two poles—or at least one of the manifestations of this tension — which we would like to examine here in both versions of the Bestiaire of Pierre de Beauvais. - [Author]

Language: French
0226-0174; DOI: 10.1484/J.LMFR.2.303050


Nicolas Balachov, Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed.

Le Developement des Structures Narratives du Fabliau a la Nouvelle (Presses Universitaires de France, Epopee Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Societe Internationale Renardienne, 1984, page 29-37) [Journal article]

"Dans ce bref expose, on procede a une comparison differenciatrice de quelques structures narratives des fabliaux et des plus anciennes nouvelles parues a l'origine du genre, structures liees a tel ou tel sujet. On n'etudie pas l'histoire du developpement des sujets avec toutes les circonstances concretes possibles, mais on confronte seulement deux niveaux: celui du fabliau et celui de la nouvelle a ses debuts." - Balachov

Language: French


Dean R. Baldwin

Genre and Meaning in the Old English Phoenix (The Bulletin of the West Virginia Association of College English Teachers, Spring; 6:1-2, 1981, page 2-12) [Journal article]

Language: English
ISSN: 0887-4409


Anthony Bale

Fictions of Judaism in England before 1290 (in The Jews in Medieval Britain: Historical, Literary and Archaeological Perspectives, 2003, page 129-144) [Book article]

Discusses the fictionalisation of medieval Anglo-Jewry by examining blood libel allegations and their use in hagiography (such as Thomas of Monmouth's life of Wiliam of Norwich) and historiography (such as Matthew Paris's Cronica Majora) as well as the portrayal of Jews in bestiaries.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-85115-931-1


Carol Falkenstine Bales

The Outer Limits: Border Characters In Medieval Manuscript Illuminations And Middle English Mystery Plays (Cincinnati: University Of Cincinnati, 1989) [Dissertation]

PhD dissertation at the University Of Cincinnati.

"Marginal figures of medieval manuscript pages and border characters in Middle English mystery plays are similar in that they provide a frame for their respective centers, which usually profess or emphasize Christianity. Border characters of manuscripts, drawn in minute detail in the margins, are usually found in overtly devotional texts such as Psalters and Books of Hours; the marginal figures border the text and/or central miniature visually and metaphorically. Border characters in mystery plays, that is to say, characters who are peripheral in terms of the central action of the biblical story, or who do not appear in Scripture or Apocrypha but are created by the dramatist, also frame in some way the central action. These border characters, then, do have a purpose beyond that of mere comic relief or mindless doodling: they enhance devotion and meditation on that which is central. Marginal figures in manuscripts fit into three main categories, according to art historian Lilian Randall: sacred themes, bestiary themes, and drolleries. Border figures of sacred themes point the reader back to the message of the central text or miniature by reflecting and/or reinforcing it. Bestiary themes figures are revelatory of God in that they are His creations or subcreations; they are also used symbolically to reinforce the message of the text. Marginal characters designated as drolleries either extend the message of the central text, contrast with it, or provide delectatio through mental and spiritual recreation. Border characters in mystery plays function similarly. Most, such as Lightbourne, Pikeharnes, Mrs. Noah, the detractors, the midwives, and the Jews, provide recreation through comedy while at the same time presenting a negative example. Thus they provide an effective contrast for the holy characters in the play, and emphasize right action through their wrong action. Christian devotion, then, is at the center of devotional manuscripts and mystery plays. The center is always God; His creatures border Him, but they must choose whether to direct their attention toward Him and serve Him, or turn away and serve themselves. The example which the border characters provide helps the viewer to make his/her own choice." - abstract

292 p.

Language: English
PQDD: AAT9019873


Theresa Bane

Encyclopedia of Beasts and Monsters in Myth, Legend and Folklore (McFarland, 2016)

"Here there be dragons"--this notation was often made on ancient maps to indicate the edges of the known world and what lay beyond. Heroes who ventured there were only as great as the beasts they encountered. This encyclopedia contains more than 2,200 monsters of myth and folklore, who both made life difficult for humans and fought by their side. Entries describe the appearance, behavior, and cultural origin of mythic creatures well-known and obscure, collected from traditions around the world. - [Publisher]

Language: English
ISBN: 978-1-4766-2268-2


A. A. Barb

Birds and Magic: 1. The Eagle-Stone; 2. The Vulture Epistle (Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, 13, 1950, page 316-322) [Journal article]

A discussion of two beast-related items used in medieval medicine: the eagle-stone, said to be kept by eagles in their nests, and used to treat problems of pregnancy; and the 'Epistula Vulturis", containing medical recipes using parts of the vulture. The origin and history of both items is traced from Antiquity.

Language: English


Peter M. Barber, Michelle P. Brown

The Aslake World Map (Imago Mundi, 44, 1992, page 24-44) [Journal article]

Language: English


Richard H. Barber, ed.

Bestiary: Being an English Version of the Bodleian Library, Oxford MS Bodley 764 (London: Folio Society, 1992) [Book]

An English translation of Bodleian Library, Oxford MS Bodley 764 with all of the illustrations.

"From the outset, it was intended that this edition should use the layout of the original manuscript; the miniatures are reproduced to their original size and in their original positions on the page, so that what appears in the following pages was designed by a thirteenth-century scribe and his illuminator, the only change being that the text is in a modern typeface rather than a highly abbreviated formal Gothic book-hand. As a result, and because the English equivalent comes out longer than the Latin text, discreet cutting of the text has been necessary... In identifying the beasts, which is often very difficult, I have in general followed the modern equivalents set out by Wilma George and Brunsdon Yapp in ... The Naming of the Beasts. ... I have settled for a [style] which is straightforward, with perhaps an echo of the language of the Authorised Version, rather than a colloquial rendering, because this seems closer to the spirit of the work." - introduction

Also published: Woodbridge [England] : Boydell Press, 1993.

205 p., color illustrations, bibliography.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-85115-329-1; LCCN: 93002466; LC: PA8275.B4E51993; DDC: 878/.0308083620


Richard H. Barber, Anne Riches

A Dictionary of Fabulous Beasts (London: Boydell Press, 1996) [Book]

A glossary of beast names drawn from nature, literature and the mythology of many cultures. There are over 600 entries, most a paragraph or two, though some are much longer. Line drawings by Rosalind Dease.

Reprint of the 1971 Macmillan London, Ltd. edition.

167 pp., bibliography.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-85115-685-1


Felice Bariola

Cecco d'Ascoli e l'Acerba. Saggio (Florence: Tipographia della Gazzetta d'Italia, 1879)

A description and analysis of the text of L'Acerba, an encyclopedia by Cecco d’Ascoli, with a biography of Ascoli.

Language: Italian


Nicholas Barker, ed.

Two East Anglian Picture Books: A Facsimile of the Helmingham Herbal and Bestiary and Bodleian MS Ashmole 1504 (London: Roxburghe Club, 1988) [Book]

The two manuscripts discussed are twin works of East Anglian origin. The Helmingham herbal and bestiary, formerly housed at Helmingham Hall, Suffolk, is now in Paul Mellon's collection at the Yale Center for British Art. The other is Bodleian Library MS. Ashmole 1504.

100 p., 132 p. of colour plates, genealogical table, map, bibliography, index.

Language: English
OCLC: 22225329


Jean-François Barnaud

Le Bestiaire vieil-anglais : étude et traduction de textes animaliers dans la poésie vieil-anglaise (Paris: Association des médiévistes anglicistes de l'enseignement supérieur, 2001; Series: Publications de l'Association des médiévistes anglicistes de l'enseignement supérieur; Hors série 7) [Book]

Critical material in French; includes Old English texts with translation and notes in French.

2 v. (405 p.)

Language: French
ISBN: 2-901198-30-9; LC: PR203; DDC: 809; OCLC: 56200103


Charles Barret

The Bunyip And Other Mythical Monsters And Legends (Melbourne: Reed & Harris, 1946) [Book]

With material on the Myndie Snake, the Seal Theory, and ancient & modern dragons.

120 pp. Illustrated with black & white photographic plates.

Language: English


James H. Barrett, Natalia Khamaiko, Anne Karin Hufthammer, Albína Hulda Pálsdóttir, et. al.

Walruses on the Dnieper: new evidence for the intercontinental trade of Greenlandic ivory in the Middle Ages (Proceedings of the Royal Society, 2022; Series: Volume 289, Issue 1972)

Mediaeval walrus hunting in Iceland and Greenland—driven by Western European demand for ivory and walrus hide ropes—has been identified as an important pre-modern example of ecological globalization. By contrast, the main origin of walrus ivory destined for eastern European markets, and then onward trade to Asia, is assumed to have been Arctic Russia. Here, we investigate the geographical origin of nine twelfth-century CE walrus specimens discovered in Kyiv, Ukraine—combining archaeological typology (based on chaîne opératoire assessment), ancient DNA (aDNA) and stable isotope analysis. We show that five of seven specimens tested using aDNA can be genetically assigned to a western Greenland origin. Moreover, six of the Kyiv rostra had been sculpted in a way typical of Greenlandic imports to Western Europe, and seven are tentatively consistent with a Greenland origin based on stable isotope analysis. Our results suggest that demand for the products of Norse Greenland's walrus hunt stretched not only to Western Europe but included Ukraine and, by implication given linked trade routes, also Russia, Byzantium and Asia. These observations illuminate the surprising scale of mediaeval ecological globalization and help explain the pressure this process exerted on distant wildlife populations and those who harvested. - [Abstract]

Language: English
1471-2954; DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2021.2773


Bartholomaeus Anglicus

Bartholomaei Anglici De genuinis rerum coelestium, terrestrium et inferarum proprietatibus: libri XVIII (Frankfort: W. Richter for N. Stein, 1601, 1609)

Full title: Bartholomaei Anglici De genuinis rerum coelestium, terrestrium et inferarum proprietatibus: libri XVIII. ; opus incomparabile, theologis, iureconsultis, medicis, omniumque disciplinarum & artium alumnis, utilissimum futurum ; cui accessit liber XIX de variarum rerum accidentibus

An early printed edition of the Latin version of De proprietatibus rerum by Bartholomaeus Anglicus. Includes the full text, plus an introduction and notes. Scanned page images.

Language: Latin


Liber de propriatibus rerum Bartholomei Anglici Ordinis Minorum (Strasbourg: Georg Husner, 1491, 1505)

An early Latin printed edition of the Liber de proprietatibus rerum by Bartholomaeus Anglicus. The text in this copy is quite readable. Includes a table of contents listing the topics of each book and chapter. Scanned page images.

Language: Latin


Liber de proprietatibus rerum Bartholomei anglici (Drucker des Jordanus de Quedlinburg, 1483)

An early printed edition of the Latin De proprietatibus rerum by Bartholomaeus Anglicus. Includes a table listing the content of each book and chapter. Scanned page images.

Language: Latin


Proprietates rerum domini bartholomei anglici (Heinrich Knoblochtzer, 1488)

An early printed edition of the Latin De proprietatibus rerum by Bartholomaeus Anglicus. Includes a table listing the content of each book and chapter. Scanned page images.

Language: Latin


De proprietatibus rerum (Lugduni: Nicolaus Philippi (Pistoris) et Marcus Reinhardi, 1482)

An early printed edition of the De proprietatibus rerum, an encyclopedia by Bartholomaeus Anglicus.

Language: Latin


De proprietatibus rerum (Antonius Koberger, 1492)

An early printed edition of the Latin De proprietatibus rerum by Bartholomaeus Anglicus. Includes a table listing the content of each book and chapter. Scanned page images.

Language: Latin


De proprietatibus rerum (Basel: Berthold Ruppel, 1470)

An early printed edition of the Latin De proprietatibus rerum by Bartholomaeus Anglicus. Scanned page images.

Language: Latin


Van den proprieteyten der dinghen (Haarlem: Jacob Bellaert, 1485)

An early printed edition of De proprietatibus rerum by Bartholomaeus Anglicus, in a Middle Dutch translation. The translator is unknown. Scanned page images.There is also a modern edition and trascription of the book; see Digital Resource 2 and 3 above.

Language: Middle Dutch
OCLC: 644305038


Tractatus de proprietatibus rerum (Lyon: Nicolaus Philippi; Markus Reinhart, 1480)

An early printed edition of the De proprietatibus rerum, an encyclopedia by Bartholomaeus Anglicus.

Language: Latin


Tractatus de proprietatibus rerum (Köln: Johann Koelhoff, 1481)

An early printed edition of the De proprietatibus rerum, an encyclopedia by Bartholomaeus Anglicus.

Language: Latin


Bartholomaeus Anglicus, Stephen Batman

Batman uppon Bartholome, his booke, De proprietatibus rerum, newly corrected, enlarged and ammended: with such additions as are requisite (London: Thomas East, 1582)

Full title: Batman uppon Bartholome, his booke, De proprietatibus rerum, newly corrected, enlarged and ammended: with such additions as are requisite, unto every severall booke: taken foorth of the most approved authors, the like heretofore not translated in English. Profitable for all estates, as well for the benefite of the mind as the bodie

An edition of the English translation of De proprietatibus rerum, a thirteenth-century encyclopedia by Bartholomaeus Anglicus. This is probably based on the English translation by John Trevisa, though this is not explicitly stated. With notes and additions by Batman.

There are digital scans of various edition of the book; there is also a full transcription online from Early English Books.

Language: English


Bartholomaeus Anglicus, Vinçente de Burgos, trans.

El libro de proprietatibus rerum (Heirich Meyer, 1494)

A printed translation of De proprietatibus rerum by Bartholomaeus Anglicus. Late fifteenth century Spanish translation by Vinçente de Burgos. Scanned page images.

Language: Spanish


Bartholomaeus Anglicus, Jean Corbechon, trans.

Livre de proprietes des choses (Lyon, France: Guillaume Le Roy, 1487)

The De proprietatibus rerum, an encyclopedia by Bartholomaeus Anglicus, in the French translation by Jean Corbechon (Livre de proprietes des choses). Scanned page images. With engraved illustrations.

Language: Middle French


Le proprietaire des choses (Lyon: Matthias Huss, 1485)

An early printed edition of the De proprietatibus rerum, an encyclopedia by Bartholomaeus Anglicus in the French translation by Jean Corbechon. With engraved illustrations.

Language: French


Le propriétaire des choses (Jean Siber, 1495)

The Le Propriétaire des choses, the De proprietatibus rerum by Bartholomaeus Anglicus in the French translation by Jean Corbechon. Scanned page images of the printed edition. With 19 engravings, one for the prologue and one for each book. The book on birds starts on page 244, fish on page 271, and animals on page 410.

Language: French


Le Propriétaire des choses, tresutile et prouffitable aux corps humains... (Paris: Jehan Petit et Michel Le Noir, 1518)

Full title: Le Propriétaire des choses , tresutile et prouffitable aux corps humains, avec aucunes additions nouvellement adjoustées, c'est assavoir : les vertus et propriétez des eaues artificielles et des herbes, les nativitez des hommes et des femmes selon les douze signes, et plusieurs receptes contre aulcunes maladies. Item ung remède tres-utile contre fièvre pestilentieuse et autre manière.

An early printed edition of the De proprietatibus rerum, an encyclopedia by Bartholomaeus Anglicus in the French translation by Jean Corbechon. With engraved illustrations.

Language: French


Le propriétaire en françoys (Paris: Antoine Vérard, 1493, 1499)

An early printed edition of the De proprietatibus rerum, an encyclopedia by Bartholomaeus Anglicus in the French translation by Jean Corbechon. With engraved illustrations.

Language: French


Bartholomaeus Anglicus, Bernard Ribémont, ed.

Le livre des propriétés des choses: une encyclopédie au XIVe siècle (Stock, 1999)

In 1372, on the orders of King Charles V, the monk Jean Corbechon of the order of Saint Augustine translated into French the encyclopedic work written a century earlier by the Franciscan Barthélemy the Englishman, De proprietatibus rerum. A sum of knowledge on nature and science, it is very successful, at a time when the desire to understand the universe is spreading among an increasingly wide audience. We learn that angels are always represented with long curly hair because their desires arise from the root of thought as hair arises from the head; we also discover there all the properties of the sky and those of the articular drop, and we know everything about the intelligence of the elephant as well as the perfections of divine persons. Following Jean Corbechon, Bernard Ribémont offers us here, put in modern French, a series of extracts from the Livre des propriétés des choses, which plunge us not only into the heart of medieval scientific thought but also into the heart of the imagination of the time, a source of wonderful images. - [Publisher]

Language: French
ISBN: 978-2-234-05189-8


Bartholomaeus Anglicus, Michael Seymour, ed.

On the properties of things : John Trevisa's translation of Bartholomaeus Anglicus De proprietatibus rerum : a critical text (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1975-1988) [Book]

A critical edition of John Trevisa's English translation of the De proprietatibus rerum of Bartholomaeus Anglicus. Volume 1 contains an introduction and notes on the text and its author and translator, plus Books 1 to 13 of the encyclopedia; Volume 2 contains Books 14 to 19 of the encyclopedia; Volume 3 contains an introduction, descriptions of the manuscripts used in the edition, textual commentary, a glossary, an index of authorities, and an index of persons.

687 p. (v. 1); 1397 p. (v. 2); 332 p. (v. 3).

Language: English
LC: AE2B2931975


László Bartosiewicz, ed., Alice Mathea Choyke, ed.

Medieval Animals On The Move: Between Body And Mind (Springer Nature (Palgrave Macmillan), 2021)

The volume offers a review of Medieval and Early Modern Age cultural attitudes toward animals, reflecting diversity in social life. It is aimed, not only at researchers and students exploring the history of animals, but also at a broader readership interested in how our attitudes toward the animal world have evolved over centuries in a variety of cultural contexts. The chapters included contribute to integrating three basic branches in medieval studies: archaeology, history (comprising both documentary and literary sources), as well as iconography. These differing sources have traditionally been studied using different paradigms. The integrated approach in this book is meant to strengthen awareness of the complex interplay between the histories of nature and culture in scholarship. In addition to being multi-disciplinary, the volume is emphatically international, with authors representing research in Austria, China, France, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Serbia, Sweden, and Switzerland. - [Editors] >/p>

Language: English
ISBN: 978-3-030-63888-7; DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-63888-7


Karl Bartsch

Provenzalisches Lesebuch / Chrestomathie provençale (Eberfeld: R. L. Frederichs, 1855, 1868)

Texts in the Provençale dialect of Old French, including on column 326-330 an abridged version of Richard de Fournival's Bestiaire d'amour, titled Aiso son las naturas d'alcus auzels e d'alcunas bestias.

Chrestomathie provençale is the French edition of the original German Provenzalisches Lesebuch.

Language: French (Provençale)


Basil the Great, Blomfield Jackson, trans.

Hexaemeron (Christian Literature Publishing Co, 1895; Series: Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Second Series, Volume 8)

A Translation into English of the Hexaemeron of Basil the Great. The Hexaemeron is a series of homilies, some of which describe animals.

Language: English


Jean Batany

Animalite et Typologie Sociale: Quelques Paralleles Medievaux (in Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed., Epopee Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Societe Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 39-54) [Book article]

"Totem, totemisme: voila les mots qui viennent a l'esprit quand on pense a un classement des hommes mis en rapport avec le classement des especes animals. Mais ces termes designent, dans le modele assez artificiel dresse par l'anthropologie traditionnelle, un syseme de division des hommes en "clans", definis par leur parente reelle ou mythique, en non par leur fonction sociale, les differences de vie entre ces groupes etant plutot d'ordre rituel que socio-professionel. ... A priori, on pourrait esper trouver, dans ces images animales symboliques, des ensembles structures correspondant aux riches typologies de l'ordre ecclesiologique et socio-professionel qu'a elaborees le Moyen Ages." Batany

Language: French


Michael Bath

The Serpent-Eating Stag in the Renaissance (in Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed., Épopée Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Société Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 55-69) [Book article]

"My purpose in this paper is to show something of what happens to a particular piece of medieval animal symbolism when it is taken up by the writers and emblematists of the Renaissance. The belief that stags eat snakes was sanctioned by classical writers on natural history such as Pliny, Aelian and Oppian. ... Physiologus was among the earliest writers to give this process an allegorical explanation, in which he was followed by the early fathers and by Psalm commentaries throughout the Middle Ages... Thus allegorized it found its way into monumental art ... and we find it regularly in encyclopaedias and Bestiaries. ... In the Renaissance it was perpetuated in three different types of source: firstly by writers of natural history, who are the continuators of the medieval Bestiaries and encyclopaedias; secondly in emblem books; and thirdly in association with a number of literary tropoi featuring the stag which at first sight look quite unconnected." - Bath

10 illustrations.

Language: English


Leah Batterham

How Medieval Bestiary Images promoted Theological, Social and Political Messages in The Queen Mary Psalter (1310-1320) (Academia Letters, 2021)

The Medieval Bestiary linked the everyday activities of animals with aspects of Christian life, reflecting the belief that all of creation was made to instruct humankind.1 Bestiary illustrations also adorned other medieval manuscripts, in particular the fourteenth century Psalter. The Queen Mary Psalter (QMP) [British Library, Royal MS 2 B VII] of 1310 contains a complete bestiary cycle on every page of the psalms. In this essay I use the example of the QMP to, firstly, explain why bestiary images were highly effective in the psalter at conveying meaning and then to elucidate some specific theological, social and political messages that were promoted to the contemporary reader through the bestiary images. - [Author]

Language: English
DOI: 10.20935/AL2575


Otto Baur

Bestiarium Humanum: Mensch-Tier-Vergleich in Kunst u. Karikatur (Munich: Heinz Moos Verlag, 1974) [Book]

A revision of the author's thesis, Cologne, 1973, which was presented under the title: Der Mensch-Tier-Vergleich und die Mensch-Tier-Karikatur.

164 p., numerous illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English
LCCN: 75555972; LC: N7745.A5B381974


Priscilla Bawcutt

The Lark in Chaucer and Some Later Poets (Yearbook of English Studies, 2, 1972, page 5-12) [Journal article]

Language: English


Ron Baxter

A baronial bestiary. Heraldic evidence for the patronage of MS. Bodley 764 (Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, 50, 1987, page 196-200) [Journal article]

Heraldic images in the bestiary. Roger de Monhaut, the Clares and the Berkeleys in relation to Oxford, Bodleian Library, Bodley 764.

"...Bodley 764 appears to be the only surviving English bestiary to show genuine, recognizable shields of arms. If these coats can be read as evidence of patronage, then Bodley 764 is among the earliest extant English manuscripts in which heraldry is used as a mark of ownership. ... Evidence of wide-spread baronial book patronage has not been found before the end of the [13th] century... the books concerned are chiefly psalters. No other English Latin bestiary can be unequivocally ascribed to lay patronage, and no indication at all of original ownership has been found on any English bestiary as costly as this one. Other luxury bestiaries of the thirteenth century - the Ashmole Bestiary, the Aberdeen Bestiary... and British Library MS Royal 12.C.XIX - remain tantalisingly empty of any indication of patronage, but the evidence of Roger de Monhaut's Bestiary at least admits the possibility that such books were made for aristocratic lay patrons." - Baxter

Language: English
http: //


Bestiaries and their Users in the Middle Ages (Phoenix Mill, UK: Sutton Publishing, 1998) [Book]

"Previous studies on Bestiaries have centred on these luxury books, with their colourful illustrations and diverting stories of animal behavious, and Bestiaries have been represented either as keys to the iconography of medieval animal sculpture in stone and wood, or as early and inept attempts at zoology. Ron Baxter's exhaustive research has shown these conclusions to be at best simplistic and at worst quite wrong. This book enables to closer than ever before to the true purpose, use and meaning of the Bestiary. Dr. Baxter, employing a completely fresh and comprehensive approach, has undertaken extensive new research into a large corpus of Bestiaries, applying modern narrative theory to their texts and images to reveal the messages encoded in them... By applying the results of this analysis to medieval library records he has been able to identify important centres of Bestiary use, and to present a radically different picture of what Bestiaries were to their medieval users." - cover copy

Includes tables of chapter orders and surviving Latin bestiaries, as well as a revision to the established system of Bestiary Families, building on the work of M. R. James and Florence McCulloch. A very valuable book.

242 pp., color and black & white plates, glossary, bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-7509-1853-5; LCCN: 98211645; LC: PA8275.B4Z541998; DDC: 809/.9336221; OCLC: 39718250


Learning from Nature: Lessons in Virtue and Vice in the Physiologus and Bestiaries (in Colum Hourihane, ed., Virtue & vice: the personifications in the Index of Christian art, Prionceton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2000, page 29-41) [Book article]

A discussion of the virtues and vices in the Physiologus, with a list of the animals associated with them. "The Physiologus is not an allegorical treatise on virture and vice; nowhere do virtues and vices actually appear appear as personifications either in the text or in the miniatures of any illustrated Physiologus or bestiary. ...the Physiologus uses examples from the natural world to convey lessons in Christian behaviour. The point, of course, is not that birds, beasts, and stones are more virtuous than humans, but that God has provided them as lessons and as warnings for the attentive human to read. ... Of the thirty-six chapters of the Physiologus B-text, most deal, some broadly, some more specifically, with virtue and vice." - Baxter

Language: English
ISBN: 0-691-05036-8


A study of the Latin bestiary in England: structure and use (London: University of London, 1990; Series: PhD thesis)

Language: English
OCLC: 940326560


Iain Beavan, M. Arnott, C. A. McLaren

The Nature of the Beast; or, The Digitisation of the Aberdeen Bestiary (Library Hi Tech, 15 no. 3-4, 1997, page 50-55) [Journal article]

This paper considers the choice of the medieval Aberdeen Bestiary as the first project in Aberdeen University Library's digitisation programme, and discusses some of the unusual features of the manuscript itself. Discusses the transfer of the Aberdeen Bestiary (a 13th century manuscript) into digital format for access on the World Wide Web. Briefly covers the background to the project before outlining the reasons for choosing photoCD as the method of digitization. Considers some of the problems encountered during the project including design and delivery issues and future developments.

Language: English
ISSN: 0737-8831


Secretary Thomas Reid and the early listing of his manuscripts (Northern Scotland, 16, 1996, page p. 175-85) [Journal article]

Language: English


Text and illustration: the Digitisation of a Mediaeval Manuscript (Computers and the Humanities, 31, 1997, page 61-67) [Journal article]

"This paper considers the choice of the medieval Aberdeen Bestiary as the first project in Aberdeen University Librarys digitisation programme, and discusses some of the unusual features of the manuscript itself. Attention is given to the content and depth of the accompanying commentaries, and particular notice is paid to the nature and extent of the textual apparatus (translation and transcription). The factors influencing the choice of (a) PhotoCD as the image capture method, and (b) JPEG as the image format for transmission of the page images across the World Wide Web are examined. The importance of the Web design to the effectiveness of the overall resource is emphasised." - publisher

Language: English


Iain Beavan, M.Arnott

Beasts on the Screen: the Digitisation of the Aberdeen Bestiary - a Case Study in Preservation and Digitisation: Principles, Practice, Problems (British Library/NPO, Proceedings of the National Preservation Office Conference, 1998) [Journal article]

Language: English


Aura Beckhöfer-Fialho

Medieval Bestiaries and the Birth of Zoology (The Antlion Pit, 1996) [Web page]

"Although bestiaries and zoological treatises shared a common interest and subject matter, they did not appear to have any real effect on one another beyond what general influences are common to all who share a same environment and mentality. The similarities they shared in dealing with animals is due to a common outlook on nature. Furthermore, while zoology showed an interest in acquiring scientific knowledge, the bestiary showed no such inclination since it was more concerned with moral education than natural history... Fundamentally, zoological treatises and bestiaries were different. Whereas the bestiary fed upon man's dependence on religon, zoology depended on his break with it..." - Aura Beckhofer-Fialho


Language: English


Robert Bedrosian

Physiologus for Grownups (RobertBedrosian, 2018)

The work known as Physiologus is a collection of tales taken from various sources. The stories, which are usually very short, describe the supposed characteristics of real and imaginary animals, precious stones, plants, and unusual places. Originally Physiologus was compiled in Greek, probably in the second century A.D. Some time in the early fifth century it was translated into Ethiopic, Classical Armenian, Syriac, and Latin — and, subsequently, from Latin into all the major languages of Europe. Elements of some of these tales are known from the works of much earlier writers, such as Herodotus and Aristotle. Others probably were written by Church Fathers (or at least attributed to them). ... The present English translation omits the morals. This circumstance arose from my initial interest in the stories, which was solely for their Classical Armenian vocabulary. At the time, I translated only a few of the tales, never intending to publish them. Years later, rereading the translation, I was struck by the delightful strangeness of the stories minus their protective garments, and thus the present edition was born. My interest is in the animals themselves—just the naked animals, if I may put it that way. As for the morals, quite a few did not seem to fit the tales, and even amounted to distractions, at least to this reader. Nonetheless, without a doubt, these morals — apt or not — are what saved Physiologus and got this unusual text copied repeatedly by monks in the Middle Ages. ... The present translation was made from the Classical Armenian text published by N. Marr in Sborniki pritch Vardana [Collections of Fables by Vardan], vol. 3 (Saint Petersburg, 1894), pp. 131-175. - [Author]

Language: English


Jeanette Beer

Beasts of Love: Richard de Fournival's Bestiaire d'amour and a Woman's Response (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2003) [Book]

The first gendered prose debate in a European vernacular, Le Bestiaire d'amour and subsequent Response constitute a clash of opposites: a medieval chancellor's erotic bestiary to a woman is countered by the woman's passionate protest against the cleric's misogynistic presuppositions. Jeanette Beer presents a close, linear reading of the two literary texts, examining the context that led to the love-bestiary's production in the thirteenth century, especially an influential version of the Physiologus by Pierre de Beauvais, the suggestiveness of the animal symbolism, and the aftermath of the debate. In her exploration of Le Bestiaire d'amour and the Response, Beer analyzes the disparity of their sexual, philosophical, and theological orientations, and considers, animal by animal, this gendered duelling of the two bestiaries, the symbolism of the one calqued upon the symbolism of the other. - [publisher]

240 p., 8 halftones, bibliography, index, index of animals

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8020-3612-0; LC: PQ1461.F64B432003; DDC: 844'.1


Le Bestiaire d'amour en vers (in Medieval Translators and Their Craft, Kalamazoo: Western Michigan University, Medieval Institute Publications, 1989, page 285-296) [Book article]

"Translation of verse into prose was not unusual in the Middle Ages. ... The reverse process, prose to verse, was more unusual. ... A conversion of Richard de Fournival's Le Bestiaire d'amour to rhyming octosyllabic couplets has survived on folios 89-92 of the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, fr. 25545 ... the fragment, now entitled Le Bestiaire d'amour en vers, states in both title and text that it is Richard's own translation... Le Bestiaire en vers courts those of Richard's contemporaries who prefer the entertainment of love literature to Aristotelian exposes. In imagery that is curiously modern Richard compares his bestiary to a consumer product whose presentation is variable. His main concern is, of course the content, which cannot fail to please when its different packaging caters to all tastes. Thus the determining factor in all formal aspects of the work is the translator's public." - [Author]

Language: English


Le Bestiaire d'amour in Lombardy (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2007; Series: Florilegium Volume 24, Number 1)

In the early fourteenth century, a time when enthusiasm for French epics, lyricpoetry, and romance was at its peak in Italy, Richard's bestiary was “translated” (in thegeographical sense) to Lombardy. The manuscript to be examined here is Pierpont Morgan Library, MS M.459.The manuscript, on vellum, was written and illuminated in northern Italy in the first half of the fourteenth century. The 32 folios contain 115 miniatures and 3 historiated initials. ... “The scribe” took it upon himself to make available on hisside of the Alps a work that had proved popular on the other. To this end he used theprerogatives that any scribe might exercise over “his” manuscript — and more, as will be seen! - [Author]

Language: English
0709-5201; DOI: 10.3138/flor.24.004


Duel of bestiaries. On Le Bestiaire d'amour by Richard de Fournival, and the anonymous Response appended to it in several manuscripts (in Willene B. Clark & Meradith T. McMunn, ed., Beasts and Birds of the Middle Ages. The Bestiary and its Legacy, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1989, page 96-105) [Book article]

"...explores the transformation of the bestiary into a work with secular symbolism in the Bestiaire d'amour and Reponse de la Dame of Richard de Fournival, using the cock to illustrate her arguments." - [Introduction]

"The traditions of the bestiary underwent unexpected transformation in Richard de Fournival's Le Bestiaire d'amour. A genre that had been devoted to Christian moralizing now became affiliated with the profane literature of love. The process involved more than a mere transposition of metaphors. The juxtaposition of the two known traditions was a provocation to both, for Le Bestiaire d'amour transcended all conventions by its ambivalence." - [Author]

With one illustration from Bodleian Library , MS. Douce 308.

Language: English


A Fourteenth Century Bestiaire d'Amour (Reinardus: Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 4, 1991, page 19-26) [Journal article]

New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, MS M.459, written and illuminated in northern Italy, probably Lombardy.

The manuscript to be examined here is Pierpont Morgan 459 which was written and iJluminatecd in Northern Italy, most probably in Lombardy. Because it postdates Richard de Fournival’s original Bestiatre d’amour by about one hundred years* and represents a deviant development whose archetype has been lost, it might seem of less interest than the bestiary’s more conventional derivatives. There are, however, interesting conclusions to be drawn from the modifications of a seribe who brought to his task uo knowledge of the context which produced the work and, it would seem, no knowledge of its original author. - [Author]

Language: English
0925-4757; DOI: 10.1075/rein.4.03bee


A Gendered Debate from the Thirteenth Century (New Zealand Journal of French Studies, 23: 2 (November), 2002, page 34-39) [Journal article]

Language: English
ISSN: 0110-7380


Gendered discourse in two thirteenth-century bestiary texts (Journal of the Institute of Romance Studies, 3 for 1994-1995, 1995, page 119-128) [Journal article]

Discusses the exchange between Richard de Fournival (in Le Bestiaire d'amour) and his lady (in La Response de la dame au bestiaire de Ricard de Fournival).

Language: English


Medieval Translators and Their Craft (Kalamazoo: Western Michigan University, 1989; Series: Studies in Medieval Culture 25) [Book]

A series of essays on translation in the Middle Ages, including Le Bestiaire d'Amour en Vers (Beer) and The Old English Phoenix (Shaw).

Language: English
ISBN: 0-918720-95-8; LCCN: 89-2535; LC: CB351.S83v.25; DDC: 940.1'7s-dc19


The New Naturalism of Le Bestiaire d'Amour (Reinardus. Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 1988; Series: Volume 1, Issue 1)

Richard de Fourniva'sl Le Bestiaire d'amour appeared shortly after the middle of the thirteenth century. It was no ordinary bestiary, and its radical manipulation of two established traditions marked the beginning of a new naturalism that would eventually receive full expression in Jean de Meun's Le Roman de la rose. The iconoclastic nature of Le Bestiaire d'amour is, however, frequently overlooked, perhaps because of the blandness of its original editor. His description of it as "ces fleurs de l'histoire naturelle rassemblées en bouquets a Chloris" [p. 4] is even less apt than it would have been as a description of Le Roman de le rose. Conversely, it is to Le Bestiaire d'amour before Le Roman de la rose that Paré’s description of "une composition systématiquement ordonnée a ridiculiser les théories de l'amour coutois" is most appropriate. - [Author]

Language: English
DOI: 10.1075/rein.1.04bee


The Response to Richard de Fournival's Bestiaire d'amour (Teaching Language through Literature, 25 (1), 1985, page 3-11) [Journal article]

Language: English
ISSN: 0362-2746


Richard de Fournival’s Anonymous Lady: The Character of the Response to the Bestiaire d’amour (Romance Philology, 1989; Series: 42:3)

An anonymous response is appended to Richard de Fournival's Bestiaire d'amour in four of the extant MSS. The hypothesis that Richard himself might have been its author is unacceptable. Major stylistic differences and the neglect of all but one theme from Richard’s contrapuntal bestiary would be sufficient evidence even without the Response’s specific criticisms of Richard, which at times verge upon insult.

The MSS provide little information. While several name “maistre Richart/ Ricars de Fourniual” as the author of the Bestiatre d’amour (some, e.g., Bibl. mun. Dijon 526, adding the further title “canceliers d’ Amiens”), none contains any other designation than “la dame” for the author of the Response. The dating of the MSS, at best imprecise, is of little help. A terminus ante quem of 1252 can be posited for the Bestiaire d’amour since a version of the Miroir des dames (dedicated to Blanche of Castile, who died in 1252) contains a citation from it. The Response poses more problems, but it is established that the extant MSS which first contained it originated in the last two decades of the 13th century, and that they are merely derivatives of a lost original. - [Author]

Language: English


Woman, authority and the book in the Middle Ages (in Women, the Book and the Worldly: Selected Proceedings of the St Hilda's Conference, 1993, Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 1995, page 61-69) [Book article]

Discusses the Response produced by a woman to counter Richard de Fournival's Bestiaire d'amour.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-85991-479-8


Rüdiger Robert Beer, Charles M. Stern, trans.

Unicorn: Myth and Reality (New York: Mason/Charter, 1977) [Book]

The author traces the unicorn's first appearances in Europe, centuries before the birth of Christ... Its image is brought to life in references to the literature of East and West, through the use of ancient illustrated manuscripts, tapestries, sculptures, woodcuts, engravings, church decorations and architectural bas-reliefs. - [Cover copy]

Originally published in German as Einhorn: Fabelwelt und Wirklichkeit, 1972 (Callwey, Munchen).

215pp. 161 black & white illustrations with commentary, dating from the second century BC to the 18th century AD. Bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-88405-583-3


Xavier Bellés

Els bestiaris medievals : llibres d'animals i símbols (Barcelona: Rafael Dalmau, 2004; Series: Episodis de la història) [Book]

70 p., illustrations, bibiliography

Language: Catalan
ISBN: 84-232-0662-9; LC: PA8275.B4; OCLC: 55060634


Giovanna Belli

Il Physiologus : L'ermetismo attraverso i simboli degli animali (Milano: Edizione Kemi, 1991) [Book]

Language: Italian


Roger Bellon

La Parodie Epique dans les Premieres Branches du Roman de Renart (in Epopee Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Societe Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 71-94) [Book article]

"S'il est un point sur lequel les critiques sont unanimes, c'est pour reconnaiatre que les differents auteurs du Roman de Renart se livrent frequement a la parodie des genres litteraires en vogue a leur epoque, la Chanson de Geste et le Roman Courtois. Vouloir determiner la place que tient la parodie epique dans l'ensemble du Roman de Renart, ce serait ouvrir une longue et minutieuse enquate; c'est pourquoi la presente etude s'inscrit necessairement dans un cadre plus limite: nous ne nous interessons qu'au "premier poeme en francais de Renart et d'Isengrin" selon l'expression de Foulet, c'est-a-dire les branches II et Va telles que les editees Martin." - Bellon

Language: French


Trickery as an Element of the Character of Renart (Forum for Modern Language Studies, January; 22:1, 1986, page 34-52) [Journal article]

"If trickery is defined as a 'means of obtaining from others that which cannot be obtained by force, work or right', it clearly emerges from the full text of the Roman de Renart that trickery is vitally important to Renart, both as animal and man... It should be noted that the Old French term enging has two senses: it is both a trick, wile or dodge, and in a more abstract sense an attitude of mind, a rule of conduct, and an approach to life. A detailed moral and intellectual portrait of Renart can therefore be drawn; in P. Jonin's study Renart is described as cruel, knavish and perverse from a moral viewpoint, but his intellectual qualities can be summed up in one word: Renart is a trickster. The distinction between moral and intellectual characteristics surely fades into insignificance when set against one essential truth: like other heroes of medieval literature, Renart pocesses a teche (l'enging), and all Renart's other characteristics are subordinated to his inate and unfailing trickery." - Bellon

Language: English
ISSN: 0015-8518


O. V. Belova

Slavianskii bestiarii: slovar’ nazvanii i simvoliki (Moscow: Izd-vo "Indrik", 2000) [Book]

Russian with a summary in English. At head of title: Rossiiskaia akademiia nauk. Institut slavianovedeniia. Slavic bestiary--dictionary of appelations and symbolism.

318 pp., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Russian
ISBN: 5-85759-100-7; LCCN: 2001425448; LC: GR825.B452000; OCLC: 44618162


D. Thomas Benediktson

Cambridge University Library L1 1 14, F. 46r-v: A Late Medieval Natural Scientist at Work (Neophilologus, 86:2 (April), 2002, page 171-177) [Journal article]

"Many catalogues of animals and sounds exist in medieval glossaries, poems, or other types of text. Most descend from a list associated with Polemius Silvius, one associated with Phocas, one associated with Aldhelm, or one associated with the poem De Philomela. Some are mixtures, editions even, of lists from multiple sources. One such text in Cambridge University Library shows a 'scientist' using scientific methods to classify and organize linguistic material." - abstract

Language: English
ISSN: 0028-2677


Philip E. Bennett

Some Doctrinal Implications of the Comput and Bestiaire of Philippe de Thaun (in Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed., Épopée Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Société Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 95-105) [Book article]

"While investigating Robert Biket's use of the hexasyllable, I was inevitably led to analyse Philippe de Thaun's handling of the same medium. I soon became struck by certain features of the Norman's allegorical expositions, particularly in those excurses which he makes beyond the traditional allegorical explanations into the formulation of doctrine concerning the person of Christ, his birth and death, baptism and the importance of the Church as a corporate body. I wish to return here to consider in more detail the nature of Philippe's formulations and their possible import. we will see, some of the most extended expositions in Philippe's work have no counterpart, either in the most immediately adduceable Latin sources, or in later vernacular authors. It will therefore be appropriate to consider Philippe's relationship to his sources, and to try to determine the extent of his personal contribution, in terms of style and rhetoric as well as content, before considering the implications of that content." - Bennett

Language: English


J. Benoit

Survivances païennes à Hildesheim autour de l'an Mil (Gazette des Beaux-Arts, 110:1427, 1987, page 191-202) [Journal article]

Etude mettant en evidence la persistance de themes iconographiques appartenant a la mythologie germanique dans les oeuvres executees entre 993 et 1022 sous l'episcopat de Bernward a la cathedrale d'Hildesheim, en particulier dans le bestiaire developpe, tant dans la sculpture, que dans les pieces d'orfevrerie : persistance directement liee aux efforts de l'evaque pour christianiser la Saxe.

Language: French


Robert G. Benson, Susan J. Ridyard

Man and nature in the Middle Ages (Sewanee, Tenn.: University of the South Press, 1995; Series: Sewanee mediaeval studies no. 6) [Book]

Contents: Natura ridens ; Natura lachrymosa / John V. Fleming -- Nature as light in Eriugena and Grosseteste ; Nature and finality in Aquinas / James McEvoy -- The Bifurcation of creation : Augustine's attitudes toward nature / Frederick H. Russell -- Some effects of the Judeo-Christian concept of Deity on medieval treatments of classical problems / Richard C. Dales -- Necessity, fate and a science of experience in Albertus Magnus, Thomas Aquinas and Roger Bacon / Jeremiah Hackett -- Nature's moral eye : Peter of Limoges' Tractatus moralis de Oculo / Richard Newhauser. The materialization of nature and of quaternary man in the early twelfth century / Paul Edward Dutton -- Celestial reason : the development of Latin planetary astronomy to the twelfth century / Bruce S. Eastwood -- The subjugation of nature in the development of the medieval hunt and tourney / Everett U. Crosby -- Chaucer's "Kynde nature" / William Provost -- Gawain in the wilderness / Edward Vasta -- Zoology in the medieval Latin bestiary / Willene B. Clark.

245 p., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-918769-37-X; LCCN: 82-50575; LC: CB351/BD581; OCLC: 35778979


Janetta Rebold Benton

Gargoyles: Animal Imagery and Artistic Individuality in Medieval Art (in Nona C. Flores, ed., Animals in the Middle Ages: A Book of Essays, New York: Garland Publishing, Inc., 1996, page 147-165) [Book article]

"Animals, like so many other subjects in the art of the Middle Ages, were often used as didactic devices in the teaching of Christianity. ... The need for readily intelligible imagery fostered, understandably, conformity and convention rather than individuality and invention -- open expression of personal artistic style cannot be considered a characteristic of medieval art. ... But eqo, and the need for its visual assertion, seem to be innate components of the human animal. Certain types of animal imagery offered medieval artists rare opportunities for individual expression -- opportunities that seem to have been seized and relished. This eassay is not concerned with readily recognized animals that play well-understood and conspicuous roles in Christian art, such as the lion, lamb, or fish. Rather, the focus is on the unusual or imaginary animals that play questionable roles, often in inconspicuous locations, specifically, as gargoyles." - Benton

Language: English


Medieval Menagerie: Animals in the Art of the Middle Ages (New York: Abbeville Press, 1992) [Book]

An examination of how images of animals were used in the Middle Ages. The book is in three sections: Ancestors - Fantastic Fauna and the Medieval Attitude Toward the Past; Science - Information and Imagery in the Medieval Bestiary; and Symbolism - The Meaning of Animals in Medieval Art. Illustrated with hundreds of examples of animal imagery from manuscripts, carvings and sculpture, paintings, and tapestries. The illustrations are of very high quality.

191 pp., color and black & white illustrations, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 1-55859-133-8


Denyse Bérend

La part du lion (in Pierre Dehaye, ed., Le bestiaire: des monnaies des sceaux et des médailles, Paris, 1974, page 25-34) [Book article]

Language: French


Nina Berend

Konrad von Megenbergs "Buch der Natur" (1350) : schriftsprachliche Varianten im Deutsch des 14. Jahrhunderts als Ausdruck für regionales Sprachbewußtsein und dessen Reflexion (Das Frühneuhochdeutsche als sprachgeschichtliche Epoche : Werner Besch zum 70. Geburtstag, 1999)

Konrad von Megenberg's “Book of Nature” (1350): Written language variants in 14th century German as an expression of regional language awareness and its Reflection

The topic is of course particularly important in the context of the German language history of the late Middle Ages in the transition to the early New High German period. Important questions include, for example, how the dialect situation should be assessed at this time, whether there are tendencies to expand language use beyond dialect boundaries, what these tendencies look like, and how they should be assessed from today's linguistic-historical perspective. Are there already clear indications of nationwide standardization of language use, and how should these indications be interpreted? When dealing with such questions, one must of course stick to the written tradition of the time; We know almost nothing from the sources about how people actually spoke in the late Middle Ages. I would like to address Konrad von Megenberg's “Book of Nature” and deal with this text under the guiding questions that I have suggested. - [Author]

Language: German


Loius-Patrick Bergot

Sur la filiation entre le Bestiaire d’amour de Richard de Fournival et la version longue du bestiaire de Pierre de Beauvais (Academia)

Critics have long defended the hypothesis that Richard de Fournival copied word for word entire passages from the long version of Pierre de Beauvais's Bestiaire... - [Author]

Language: French


Max L. Berkey, Jr.

Pierre de Beauvais: An Introduction to His Works (Romance Philology, 1965; Series: Vol. 18, No. 4)

A short introduction the works of Pierre de Beauvais, including but not limited to the Bestiaire. With a history of the scholarly study of Pierre's text, from the mid-nineteenth century.

Language: English


Jacques Berlioz & Remy Cordonnier

Le convers et les oiseaux. Monde animal, morale et milieu monastique: le De avibus d'Hugues de Fouilloy (XIIe siecle) (in Rémy Cordonnier, L'homme-animal, histoire d'un face à face, Strasbourg: Adam Biro / Musées de Strasbourg, 2004) [Book article]

Catalogue de l'exposition des musées de Strasbourg (Galerie Heitz, Musée Archéologique - Palais Rohan -, Musée de l'œuvre Notre-Dame, Musée d'Art moderne et contemporain, 8 avril - 4 juillet 2004).

Language: French


Jacques Berlioz, ed., Marie Anne Polo de Beaulieu, ed.

L'animal exemplaire au Moyen Âge (Ve - XVe siècles) (Rennes: Presses Universitaires de Rennes, 1999) [Book]

Language: French


Massimo Bernabò

Il fisiologo di Smirne: le miniature del perduto codice B. 8 della Biblioteca della Scuola evangelica di Smirne (Tavarnuzze-Firenze: SISMEL edizioni del Galluzzo, 1998; Series: Millennio medievale 7 (Società internazionale per lo studio del Medioevo latino)) [Book]

Of the precious codex of Smyrna, reduced to ashes in the fire that devastated the city in 1922 and witness, among other works, of the Physiologus, the author reconstructs the surviving iconographic material (dating to the 14th century) by publishing 89 photographs of the miniatures, taken between the end of the nineteenth century and the beginning of the twentieth century and now found in various archives around the world. The careful study of the manuscript, which constitutes the only illuminated oriental testimony of the Physiologus, explains the importance of such a recovery for the history of both Byzantine illumination and the naturalistic and exegetical knowledge of the Eastern Middle Ages. The miniatures reproduced here in fact depict the physical nature of the animals described in the text, as well as the moral hermeneia that follows from the parallel established between the behaviors of animals and those of men, interpreted in the light of the Scriptures. The Physiologist's investigation of zoological sources places emphasis on naturalistic treatises and other works of antiquity. Other depictions were instead introduced into the illuminated cycle from different iconographic sources, probably in the Palaeologan era. - [Abstract]

128 pp., 54 pp. of plates, illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: Italian
ISBN: 88-87027-24-2; LC: PA4273.P9; OCLC: 40624656


Carlos L Bernárdez, Xosé Ramón Mariño Ferro

Bestiario en pedra : animais fabulosos na arte medieval galega (Vigo: Nigra Trea, 2004) [Book]

Relief sculpture of bestiary subjects in the Galicia region of Spain.

249 p., illustrations (some color), bibliography.

Language: Spanish (Galician)
ISBN: 84-95364-27-1; LCCN: 2005-420824; LC: N7745.A5; OCLC: 60543179


Richard Bernheimer

Wild Men in the Middle Ages (Cambridge, Mass.: 1952) [Book]

Language: English


W. Berschin

Sancti Geronis columna. Zu Ysengrimus II 179 ff. un IV 25f. (in Aspects of the Medieval Animal Epic, Louvain: Leuven University Press, 1975, page 105-112) [Book article]

Der besondere Reiz der Satire besteht in der Genauigkeit und Scharfe, mit der der Satiriker das Detail erfast, in der Keckheit, mit der er Realitaten aufgreift, die sonst weithin nicht literaturfahig sind. Auf ein solches Detail mochte ich mit einigen Bemerkungen zu zwei Stellen im Ysengrimus eingehen, in denen der Verfasser des Ysengrimus - eine Handschrift nennt ihn Nivardus magister - die "Saule des heiligen Gereon" zu Koln beschwort.

(Der Fuchs uberredet den Wolf dazu, mit dem Schwanz in einem vereisenden Gewasser zu fischen. Da der Wolf festgefroren ist, lockt er durch einen Hahnraub einen Pfarrer und seine Gemeinde von der Messe weg zu der Stelle, wo Ysengrimus festsitzt. Der Wolf mus von den Verfolgern des Fuchses Schlimmes erdulden, bis Aldrada, die alte Magd des Pfarrers, die den Wolf am argsten schindet, mit einem ungeschickten Axthieb dem Wolf den Schwanz abtrennt und ihn so befreit. Ysengrimus schwort dem Fuchs ewige ache.)

Language: German


Amand Berteloot

Jacob van Maerlant, Der Naturen Bloeme: Introduction to the literary history and description (Codices illuminati medii aevi (CIMA), 1999; Series: CIMA 56)

This article is the introduction and notes that accompanied a microfiche facsimile of manuscript Lippische Landesbibliothek, Ms. 70 (designated D), the Der Naturen Bloeme of Jacob van Maerlant. It includes:

  • biography of Jacob
  • notes on his works
  • description of the text of the Der Naturen Bloeme
  • annotated list of surviving manuscripts (with the standard letter designations)
  • extensive codicological descriptions of Ms. 70
  • list of editions
  • complete list of all of the illustrations with notes explaining them and corrected annimal names
  • bibliography

Language: German
ISBN: 3-89219-056-9


Amand Berteloot, ed., Detlev Hellfaier, ed.

Jacob van Maerlant's 'Der naturen bloeme' und das Umfeld: Vorläufer, Redaktionen, Rezeption (Münster; New York: Waxmann, 2001; Series: Niederlande-Studien 23) [Book]

Papers presented at an international colloquium held by the Lippische Landesbibliothek, Oct. 29-30, 1999. Articles in German and Dutch.

The manuscript Detmold, Lippische Landesbibliothek, Mscr 70 is the oldest completely preserved source of Jacob van Maerlant's natural encyclopedia Der naturen bloeme. In 1999, the unique importance of this precious manuscript was recognized in two ways. After the text had already been published in an exemplary manner by Maurits Gysseling in 1981, the appearance of a color microfiche edition - a pioneer in Dutch philology - made the text, together with its unique pictorial decoration, accessible to the public for the first time. In addition, on October 29th and 30th, 1999, in the Lippe State Library, under the title "The blossoms of nature and the environment. Forerunner - Editorials - Reception" held an international colloquium in which the Detmold manuscript was the focus of interest. The present volume in the Netherlands Studies series, the first to be published jointly by the Center for Dutch Studies and the Institute for Dutch Philology at the Westphalian Wilhelms University, bears the same title as the Detmold Colloquium and brings together all the lectures that held by the German, Dutch and Flemish participants. - [Foreword]

311 p., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: German
ISBN: 3-8309-1034-7; LCCN: 2001-422252; LC: PT5570.D48J332001; OCLC: 48847572


Iván Bertényi

A környezo táj állatvilágának megjelenése a középkori magyar címerekben" (in Táj és történelem. Tanulmányok a történeti ökológia világából (in Táj és történelem. Tanulmányok a történeti ökológia világából, Budapest: Osiris, 2000, page 187-193) [Book article]

[The appearance of animals from the local environment in medieval Hungarian coats of arms] Analyses several Hungarian family coats of arms from the point of view of the illustrated animals on them.

Language: Magyar
ISBN: 963-389-055-1


Widmer Berthe

Eine Geschichte des Physiologus auf einem Madonnenbild der Brera (Zeitschrift für Religions- und Geistesgeschichte, 15:4, 1963, page 313-330) [Journal article]

Language: German
ISSN: 0044-3441


Thomas W. Best

Reynard the Fox (Boston: Twayne Publishers, 1983; Series: Twayne's World Authors Series 673) [Book]

I have written the present book as an introduction to the major Reynard poems, which form a definite progression. The Latin Ysengrimus influenced many parts of the French Roman de Renart [Romance of Reynard], out of which the Dutch Van den Vos Reynaerde [Of Reynard the Fox] developed. With further help from the Roman de Renart, Van den Vos Reynaerde was expanded into the Dutch Reinaerts Historie [Reynard's History], which was reworked in Low German as Reynke de Vos [Reynard the Fox]. My book presumes no prior knowledge of medieval beast epics, being descriptive as well as analytical, but it also offers new interpretations. Rather than a summary of previous research, it is a statement of my own opinions, as grounded in previous research. - [Preface]

178 pp., bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8057-6520-4; LCCN: 82-13095; LC: PN690.R5B41983; DDC: 809'.9336


Dr. Bethmann

Lamberti Floridus, nach der Genter Handschrift (Serapeum, 1845; Series: 6)

A study of the Liber Floridus by Lambert of Saint-Omer, based on the Universiteitsbibliotheek Ghent, MS 92 manuscript.

Language: German


Maurizio Bettini

Giving Birth: Stories of Weasels and Women, Mothers and Heroes (Web, 1998) [Web page]

"In 1998, Maurizio Bettini published his much-awaited book about weasels in ancient Greece and Rome: Nascere. Storie di donnole, donne, madre ed eroi. This webpage has been created to share the basic contents of the book with English-speaking readers."

Includes a large bibliography of weasel lore.

Language: English


Nascere. Storie di donnole, donne, madre ed eroi (Torino Italy: Einaudi Press, 1998) [Book]

Weasel lore in Greece and Rome.

See also Giving Birth: Stories of Weasels and Women, Mothers and Heroes for a partial English edition.

Language: Italian


Gabriel Bianciotto

Bestiaires du Moyen Age (Paris: Stock, 1980; Series: Serie "Moyen âge"; 35) [Book]

Includes a short introduction to the bestiary genre and a brief biography of each author, with bibliographies. "mis en Francais moderne et presente par Gabriel Bianciotto".

Contents: Bestiaire - Pierre de Beauvais; Bestiaire divin (extracts) - Guillaume le Clerc de Normandie; Bestiaire d'un poete - Thibaut de Champagne; Bestiaire d'amour - Richard de Fournival; Livre du Tresor - Brunetto Latini; Livre des proprietes des choses (livre XVIII) - Jean Corbechon.

262 p., bibliography

Language: French
ISBN: 2-234-01217-1; LC: PQ1327.B4; DDC: 398.245; OCLC: 27747241


Sur le Bestiaire d'amour de Richart de Fournival (in Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed., Épopée Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Société Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 107-119) [Book article]

Il ne me semble pas paradoxal d'affirmer que le Bestiaire d'Amour de Richard de Fournival est une oevre mal connue, et sur laquelle on n'a porte generalement que des appreciations d'autant plus peremptoires qu'elles etaient superficielles et mal fondees. La preface de Cesare Segre a son edition du Bestiaire d'Amour constitue toujours la seuale approche informee de l'oevre, et malgre as richesse, on ne peut considerer qu'elle ait epuise touts les perspectives critiques. Les commentaires situent en general assez clairement le Bestiaire par rapport a son amont et a son aval dans le fil de l'histoire litteraire, mais sans caracteriser autrement son role de charniere, et la transmutation qu'il a fait subir aux themes et aux images de la lyrique courtoise, aux metaphores du bestiaire traditionnel, avant de les transmettre a ses epigones du Dit de la Panthere d'Amour ou du Fiore di Virtu: il ne suffit sans doute pas de poser que le Bestiaire d'Amour a systematise l'usage emblematique des animaux dans l'illustration d'une rhetorique amoureuse pour definir l'originalite du mode d'ecriture de Richart de Fournival, et l'apport de l'auteur a la litteraire de son temps. - [Author]

Language: French


Des trois oiseaux symboliques dans des textes anciens; aux sources du bestiaire roman (Reinardus: Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 8, 1995, page 3-23) [Journal article]

Discusses religious symbolism in the Vie de Saint Alexis, Sainte Foy d'Agen, and the Physiologus Latinus.

Language: French


Gabriel Bianciotto, ed., Michel Salvat, ed.

Épopée Animale, Fable, Fabliau (Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984; Series: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Société Internationale Renardienne) [Book]

Actes du IVe Colloque de la Society International Renardienne, Evreux, 7-11 Sept. 1981. A series of essays relating to animal fables of the Middle Ages, including several on Reynard the Fox; others discuss the Bestiaire d'amour of Richard de Fournival, the French fabliaux genre, bestiaries, etc. Articles in English, French and German.

724 p.

Language: French/German/English
ISBN: 2-13-038255-X; LC: CB351.C2


Bibliothèque Nationale de France

Bestiaire de Moyen Âge (Bibliotheque Nationale de France, 2004) [Web page]

The online catalog of an exhibition on the medieval bestiary, with samples from several bestiary manuscripts at the Bibliotheque Nationale de France. A printed catalogue is also available.

Language: French


Bestiaire médiéval : Enluminures (Paris: Nationale de France, 2005) [Book]

"Catalogue de l'exposition presentee a la bibliotheque nationale de France du 11 octobre 2005 au 8 janvier 2006".

An online catalog is also available.


Language: French
ISBN: 2-7177-2337-4; DDS: 091; OCLC: 62130576


F. Bibolet

Portraits d`oiseaux illustrant le De avibus d`Hugues de Fouilly, manuscrit de Clairvaux Troyes 177 (in B. Chauvin, ed., Mélanges à la mémoire du Père Anselme Dimier, Abbayes: Beernem / Histoire Cistercienne, 4, 1984, page 409-447) [Book article]

Language: French


Jean Bichon

Josseline Bidard

Reynard the Fox as Anti-Hero (in Leo Carruthers, ed., Heroes and Heroines in Medieval English Literature, Cambridge: Brewer, 1994, page 119-123) [Book article]

Language: English
ISBN: 0-85991-415-1


Frederick M. Biggs

The Eschatological Conclusion of the Old English Physiologus (Medium Aevum, 58:2, 1989, page 286-297) [Journal article]

"Much of the criticism of the Old English Physiologus has quite properly focused on the final fragmentary sections - conveniently called 'The Partridge' - since the differing interpretations of these lines provide strikingly different views of the shape of the entire work. The textual problem at this point in the Exeter Book is straightforward: after the opening phrases that identify the subject as a bird, the poem breaks off in mid-sentence at the bottom of folio 97b; the following folio begins mid-sentence, but does not explicitly mention a bird. now seems likely that a single leaf, and not an entire gathering, has been lost at this point ... the two passages either may be or may not be part of the same poem. In this essay, I should like to strengthen the claim that they are part of a single poem about the partridge, by arguing that the final fragment differs from the moral gloss of the Latin source because the Anglo-Saxon poet has included eschatological motifs, and thus makes the conclusion of the work similar to other Old English poems that end with references to the Last Judgement." - Biggs

Language: English
ISSN: 0025-8385


Sarah J Biggs

The Anatomy of a Dragon (London: British Library, Medieval manuscripts blog, 2014; Series: 23 April 2014)

Dragons are near-ubiquitious in medieval manuscripts. They take pride of place in bestiaries and herbals, books of history and legend, and Apocalypse texts, to name a few. They serve as symbols, heraldic devices, and even as ‘just’ decoration, and their physical characteristics can vary widely. Cinematic and literary depictions of dragons today are fairly consistent; they are almost always shown as reptilian, winged, fire-breathing creatures (in a word, Smaug). But this was by no means constant in the medieval period. - [Author]

Language: English


Bugs in Books (London: British Library, Medieval manuscripts blog, 2014; Series: 26 August 2014)

Even the most cursory glance over the pages of medieval manuscripts will reveal a plethora of insects. Bugs are everywhere – although we hasten to add that we are extremely vigilant about avoiding the presence of any actual living insects within the pages of our books. But there has been little comprehensive scholarship about the appearance of such creatures in medieval manuscripts. Insects usually live literally in the margins, often not even appearing in catalogue entries despite their profusion. Whilst undertaking this very short exploration of the subject, therefore, we would do well to remember the words of one of the earliest writers about these minute creatures. As Pliny the Elder reminds us in the introduction to his book about insects: ‘Nature is nowhere to be seen in greater perfection than in the very smallest of her works. For this reason then, I must beg of my readers, notwithstanding the contempt they feel for many of these objects, not to feel a similar disdain for the information I am about to give relative thereto, seeing that, in the study of Nature, there are none of her works that are unworthy of our consideration.’ - [Author]

Language: English


Not Always Bad News Birds: The Caladrius (British Library, Medieval manuscripts blog, 2013; Series: 12 April 2013)

Although they are little-known today, caladrius birds were common features in medieval bestiaries. The caladrius, we are told in the bestiary text, makes its home in the courts of kings, and is pure white 'like the swan'. The dung of the caladrius was believed to cure blindness, but this remedy was rather a mixed blessing since it required the direct application of guano in the eyes of the afflicted. But the real value of the caladrius was in its infallible prognostic abilities. If it was brought into a sickroom and turned away from the man or woman within, that person would surely die. If, however, the caladrius kept his gaze on the ill person and 'directed itself towards his face' (sometimes this is depicted quite literally; see below), it was a different story. After staring down the sick man or woman, the caladrius would fly into the air, taking the illness with it, and the patient was destined to make a full recovery. = [Author]

Language: English


Bettina Bildhauer, ed., Robert Mills, ed.

The Monstrous Middle Ages (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2004) [Book]

"The figure of the monster in medieval culture functions as a vehicle for a range of intellectual and spiritual inquiries, from questions of language and representation to issues of moral, theological, and cultural value. Monstrosity is bound up with questions of body image and deformity, nature and knowledge, hybridity and horror. To explore a culture's attitudes to the monstrous is to comprehend one of its most important symbolic tools.

The Monstrous Middle Ages looks at both the representation of literal monsters and the consumption and exploitation of monstrous metaphors in a wide variety of high and late-medieval cultural productions, from travel writings and mystical texts to sermons, manuscript illuminations and maps. Individual essays explore the ways in which monstrosity shaped the construction of gender and sexual identity, religious symbolism, and social prejudice in the Middle Ages.

Reading the Middle Ages through its monsters provides an opportunity to view medieval culture from fresh perspectives. The Monstrous Middle Ages will be essential reading for anyone interested in the concept of monstrosity and its significance for both medieval cultural production and contemporary critical practice." - publisher

1. Introduction: Conceptualizing the Monstrous - Bettina Bildhauer and Robert Mills

2. Jesus as Monster - Robert Mills

3. Monstrous Masculinities in Julian of Norwich's A Revelation of Love and The Book of Margery Kempe - Liz Herbert Mcavoy

4. Blood, Jews and Monsters in Medieval Culture - Bettina Bildhauer

5. The Other Close at Hand: Gerald of Wales and the 'Marvels of the West' - Asa Simon Mittman

6. Idols and Simulacra: Paganity, Hybridity and Representation in Mandeville 's Travels - Sarah Salih

7. Demonizing the Night in Medieval Europe: A Temporal Monstrosity? - Deborah Youngs and Simon Harris

8. Apocalyptic Monsters: Animal Inspirations for the Iconography of Medieval North European Devourers - Aleks Pluskowski

9. Hell on Earth: Encountering Devils in the Medieval Landscape - Jeremy Harte

10. Encountering the Monstrous: Saints and Dragons in Medieval Thought - Samantha J.E. Riches

210 p., illustrations, index.

Language: English


Sandra Billington

The Cheval fol of Lyon and other asses (in Clifford Davidson, ed., Fools and Folly, Kalamazoo: Medieval Institute Publications, 1996, page 9-33) [Book article]

Discusses the relevance of appearance of horses and asses in literature, with particular reference to mystery plays.

Language: English
ISBN: 1-879288-70-2


Peter Binkley, ed.

Pre-Modern Encyclopaedic Texts (Leiden: Brill, 1997; Series: Proceedings of the Second COMERS Congress, Groningen, 1-4 July 1996) [Book]

"Pre-Modern Encyclopaedic Texts presents the proceedings of the second COMERS congress, the successor to Centres of Learning (Brill, 1995). Like its predecessor it contains in ancient, medieval and renaissance Europe and the Near East. Although the genre of encyclopaedia was defined and named only in modern times, texts that aspire to the encyclopaedic ideals of utility and comprehensiveness are found throughout recorded history. They respond to and shape ideas about the natural world, human history, and the nature and limits of human knowledge. The present volume comprises five extended essays on the problems and opportunities facing researchers into encyclopaedic texts, and 21 research papers on specific topics. It will be of interest to a general university audience as an interdisciplinary project, as well as to specialists in the various disciplines covered." - publisher

Language: English
ISBN: 90-04-10830-0


Gabriel Bise

Medieval Hunting Scenes (Miller Graphics, 1978) [Book]

Illustrations from "The Hunting Book" by Gaston Phoebus.

108 p.

Language: English


Klaus Bitterling

Physiologus und Bestiarien im englischen Mittelalter (Mittellateinisches Jahrbuch: Internationale Zeitschrift für Mediävistik / International Journal of Medieval Studies, 40:2, 2005, page 153-170) [Journal article]

Discusses manuscripts:

Oxford, Bodleian Library, Bodley 764

London, British Library, Royal 12.F.XIII

Cambridge, Corpus Christi College, 16

London, British Library, Royal 2.B.VII

Oxford, Bodleian Library, Ashmole 1511

Language: German
ISSN: 0076-9762


Zur Quelle des Middle English Bestiary, 649-667 (Zeitschrift für englische Philologie, 94:1-2, 1976, page 166-169) [Journal article]

Language: German


Thetis Blacker, Jane Geddes

Animals of the imagination and the bestiary (Aldeburgh: Britten-Pears Library, 1994; Series: The Prince of Hesse and the Rhine memorial lecture, 1994) [Book]

"Given at the Jubilee Hall Aldeburgh, on Tuesday 14 June 1994, during the 46th Aldeburgh Festival of Music and the Arts."

12p., bibliography.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-9511939-4-5


N. F. Blake

The Phoenix (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1964) [Book]

The Phoenix is an allegorical poem which has been preserved in the Exeter Book, an anthology compiled towards the end of the tenth century and given to Exeter Cathedral by Leofric, the first Bishop of Exeter. A picture of a terrestrial heavenly paradise, allegorical interpretations are linked with the story of the phoenix. Blake discusses the manuscript, the language of the poem and its sources, authorship and date. Illustrated with b/w frontispiece of Phoenix from Bestiaries.

Language: English


A Possible Seventh Copy of Caxton's Reynard the Fox (1481)? (Notes and Queries, 10, 1963, page 287-288) [Journal article]

Language: English
ISSN: 0029-3970


Reflections on William Caxton's 'Reynard the Fox' (Canadian Journal of Netherlandic Studies/Revue, May; 4 (1), 1983, page 69-76) [Journal article]

Notes on William Caxton's English language translation of "Reynard the Fox" from Die Hystorie van Reynaert de Vos. Netherlandic literature.

Language: English
ISSN: 0225-0500


Reynard the Fox in England (in E. Rombauts, A. Welkenhuysen & G. Verbeke, ed., Aspects of the Medieval Animal Epic, Louvain: Leuven University Press, 1975, page 53-66) [Book article]

"The Roman de Renart is such an important text in medieval French literature and exerted such an influence on several other medieval vernacular literatures that it has usually been assumed it was also known in medieval England and influenced Middle English writers. Two attempts have been made to document this influence: one by F. Mosse and the other by J. Flinn. Since both scholars were intent on tracing the influence of the Roman de Renart, their surveys excluded some Middle English works containing stories of foxes in which the fox is not called Reynard. The omission of these works distorts the general picture of fox literature in England for it suggests that only those stories which have some connexion with the Roman de Renart were found. It is therefore worthwhile reopening the question of whether the Roman de Renart was known in England, partly to investigate the occurrences of the fox in a wider context, and partly to consider to what ends the English poets used their material since this may provide us with a clue as to the possible sources they used. My investigation will be concerned principally with works written in Middle English, though it should not be forgotten that the fox is frequently portrayed in he art of the later Middle English period and that stories about the fox were composed also in Latin and French in England." - Blake

Language: English


Karen Keiner Blanco

Of 'Briddes and Beestes': Chaucer's Use of Animal Imagery as a Means of Audience Influence in Four Major Poetic Works (Los Angeles: University Of Southern California, 1994) [Dissertation]

PhD dissertation at the University Of Southern California.

"This dissertation is an analysis of Geoffrey Chaucer's use of animal imagery in The House of Fame, The Parlement of Foules, 'The Nun's Priest's Tale' in The Canterbury Tales, and Troilus and Criseyde. Chaucer used animal imagery extensively in these works, either portraying animals acting like humans or humans exhibiting bestial behavior. The paper explores how Chaucer deliberately employed these animal portrayals to influence and to manipulate his audience. Chaucer's medieval audience was familiar with animal lore through numerous sources: daily agricultural interaction with animals, bestiary lore, religious sermons containing animal lore, folklore, and biblical allusions. For each work, I analyze the various references to animals in terms of historical usage and importance to the work. Also, I examine recent Chaucerian scholarship which discusses Chaucer's relationship with his audience. I argue that Chaucer's use of animal imagery is deliberate and calculated in its goal of imparting social and religious values to his audience. He enlightened and entertained his audience through the animal imagery, always with the specific intent of manipulating them to accept his own themes and commentaries. In The House of Fame, Chaucer uses the eagle animal figure to discuss medieval theories of science and rhetoric and to analyze the art of poetry itself. In The Parlement of Foules, extensive bird imagery enhances Chaucer's lament about the decline of chivalry and changes occurring in his social milieu. In 'The Nun's Priest's Tale,' the animal imagery enables Chaucer to indulge in humorous social class depictions, a means of audience manipulation and social control. And his greatest work involving animal imagery, Troilus and Criseyde, is Chaucer's most blatant and brilliant use of Christian oriented animal imagery. In this paper, I show that Chaucer's creative and successful use of animal imagery enables him to interact more cogently on philosophical, spiritual, intellectual, and humorous levels with both his medieval and modern audiences." - abstract

Copies available exclusively from Micrographics Department, Doheny Library, USC, Los Angeles, CA.

Language: English


Elaine C. Block

Bell the Cat and Gnaw the Bone: Animals and Proverbs on Misericords (Reinardus. Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 1991; Series: Volume 4, Issue 1)

Misericords with secular themes adorned the Catholic churches of Europe froin the thirteenth century until they were banned by counter-Reformation edicts in the mid-sixteenth century. Most of the animals on these misericords can be classified as fabulous monsters. The amorphous forms at Chichester, the scaly monsters created by Andre Sulpice at Rodez and Villefranche-de-Rouergue, and the glaring creatures at Aarschot in Belgium are more typical than exceptional. Their aberrations from the norm and their frightening details signify evil. These monsters provide a logical base for the living statues: the monk, canon, or bishop who sits upon them - a columnar figure who conquers evil by crushing the sins depicted below. When we see a realistic animai on a misericord, one that does not necessarily connote evil, we may ask why it ts there, for it does not suit the misericord as theme or statue base. Why are these animals here? What do they signify? How do they relate to the evil monsters we usually see on misericords? I propose that one must search for symbolic meanings in realistic animal carvings. Some represent the seasons; some represent specific vices. An intriguing possibility is that these animals are actors in proverbs, proverbs that show not the great sins of the world - the cardinal or theological sins - but the small evils, the everyday sins, the character traits and behaviour destructive to work and to interpersonal relationships. - [Author]

Language: English
0925-4757; DOI: 10.1075/rein.4.05blo


Corpus of Medieval Misericords in France (Turnhout, Belgium: Brepolis, 2003) [Book]

"The Corpus of Medieval Misericords (XIII-XXVI) consists of five volumes; the first four focus on the misericords and related choir stall carvings in specific regions of Europe. The fifth includes an extensive iconographic index of themes common to various countries as well as themes that are unique to a single country.

Volume I of this series, Medieval Misericords in France, covers approximately 300 churches that still contain gothic misericords with carved figures and narratives inspired by oral traditions suh as proverbs and folk tales, as well as by manuscript marginalia, romanesque capitals, illustrated bibles, engravings, playing cards... A vast portrayal of medieval life - rural activities, urban occupations, conjugal relationships, monastic life -- is displayed in these carvings under the seats of choir stalls along with costumes of the times, town and collegiate architecture, mechanical devices. Puns and rebuses are often intertwined with these themes to produce comic and, to twenty-first century eyes, mysterious puzzles. The global view of misericord carvings, generally ignored in studies of medieval art, is here presented as a multidisciplinary basis for further research by sociologists, historians, archeologists and other medieval scholars.

Following volumes include misericords in Iberia, Flemish and borthen Europe, Great Britain." - publisher

Volume 1: 452 pp., 921 black & white illustrations.

Language: English
ISBN: 2-503-51239-9


Bock, Sebastian

The "Egg" of the Pala Montefeltro by Piero della Francesca and its symbolic meaning (Heidelberg: Universität Heidelberg / Zentrale und Sonstige Einrichtungen, 2003) [Book]

"The hanging ovoid object in Piero della Francesca's Montefeltro Altarpiece has long been the subject of controversies with regard to its identification and symbolic meaning. The present article argues that it can only be an ostrich egg (or imitation thereof), intended as an admonitory example. This is supported by further representations as well as by the interpretation of the "Rationale Divinorum Officorum" and a late version of the Greek "Physiologus". It is also born out by the widespread practice of suspending ostrich eggs among Coptic, Armenian, Greek-Orthodox, Latin and Nestorian Christians as well as in Islam. The eggs, often in the context of hanging lamps or lamp crowns, always served as warning or admonitory examples. Their varying emblematic significance is almost always related to the ostrich's behavior towards its eggs, attested in post-classical natural-history tales with allegorical interpretations, which is interpreted as a symbol of man's relationship to God or to religious ideas."

Language: English


Patricia J. Boehne

Animals as Symbolic Devices in Llull and Turmeda (in Antonio Torres-Alcala & Victorio Aguera, ed., Josep Maria Sola-Sole: Homage, homenaje, homenatge: Miscelanea de estudios de amigos y discipulos, Barcelona: Puvill Libros, 1984, page 205-216) [Book article]

Language: English


Helmut Boese

Zur Textüberlieferung von Thomas von Cantimpratensis Liber de natura rerum (Archivium Fratrum Praedicatorum, 39, 1969, page 53-68) [Journal article]

Language: German


Michelle Bolduc

Silence's Beasts (in Debra Hassig, ed., The Mark of the Beast: The Medieval Bestiary in Art, Life, and Literature, New York: Garland, 1999, page 185-209) [Book article]

Examines the influence of bestiaries on Le Roman de Silence.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8153-2952-0


Corrado Bologna

La tradizione manoscritta del Liber monstrorum de diversis generibus (appunti per l'edizione critica) (in 34:3-4Cultura neolatina: Bollettino dell'Istituto di filologia romanza, 1974, page 337-346) [Book article]

Details of five Liber monstrorum manuscripts at Leiden, London (B.L.), St. Gallen, Wolfenbuttel and the private library of the Marquis of Rosanbo.

Manuscripts discussed: Wolfenbuttel, Herzog-August-Bibliothek, 4452 Weissenburg; Leiden, Bibliotheek der Rijksuniversiteit, Voss.Lat.8*.60; London, British Library, Royal 15 B XIX; St. Gallen, Stiftsbibliothek, 237; Rosanbo, private library of the Marquis, no shelfmark.

Language: Italian


Francis Bond

Wood Carvings in English Churches: Misericords (London: Oxford University Press, 1910; Series: Church Art in England) [Book]

An extensive survey of misericords in English churches. Part 1 covers animal images (eastern mythology, classical mythology, the Physiologus and bestiary subjects); Part 2 covers traveller's tales, romances, Aesop, scenes of everyday life, agriculture and trades, sports, seasons, Bible subjects, miracle plays, symbolism and satire; Part 3 covers the use, design and chronology of misericords.

237 p., 241 black & white photographic plates, illustrations, bibliography, index, lists.

Language: English
LC: NA5050.W6v.1


Jacques Bonnod

L'art bestiaire de la cathédrale Saint-Jean de Lyon (Lyons: Impr. Bosc, 1959) [Dissertation]

Language: French
LC: NA5551.L9B6


Sandra Tárraga Bono

The Aloe-bird in the Coptic Tradition (Aula Orientalis, 2019; Series: 40/2)

There is a bird in the Coptic tradition whose name is "aloe”. At least three Coptic texts mention the existence of this legendary species of bird of oriental origin whose main feature is the good smell that emanates. These texts state that, by its smell, this bird is capable of attracting other animals towards it. Its smell is also the main reason why it is coveted by kings and, therefore, searched and hunted. The aloe-bird was introduced in the Coptic version of the Physiologus as a manifestation of Christ, with features taken partly from the panther and the phoenix that appear in the original literary work. The allegorical meaning of the bird is to represent Christ. The origin and later fate of this symbol can only be conjectural due to the lack of sources. There are some hints to suggest that it has been the result of a confluence of information from different origins that sparked the imagination of the people. The identification of the aloe in the Coptic art is again hypothetical because of the lack of a description of its physical appearance and the absence of captions identifying it. - [Abstract]

Language: English


Anna Boreczky

The Budapest Concordantiae Caritatis. The Medieval Universe of a Cistercian Abbot in the Picture Book of a Viennese Councilman (Gyula Schöck, 2017)

This book is the commentary volume to the facsimile edition of the Budapest Concordantiae caritatis manuscript from 1413 (Central Library of the Hungarian Province of the Piarist Order, CX 2).

The Budapest Concordantiae caritatis possesses an almost inexhaustible wealth of images created by a collective of seven artists whose personal styles represent at least two distinct regions of medieval Europe and who used a great variety of models originating from both the 14th and the early 15th centuries. The manuscript thus provides an extraordinary opportunity for studying the circulation of visual ideas between ages and among artists. Allowing insight into the workshop of seven painters, the manuscript invites us to study the conception of images, and, as a result, to glimpse art works in their complete, multi-layered historicity. ... Addressing his work to poor clerics having no access to well equipped libraries and compiling it for the benefit of simple laymen, Ulrich von Lilienfeld aimed to cover a whole universe of knowledge: everything that seemed to be important for the understanding of the divine plan of salvation. - [Author]

Language: English


Thomas Boreman

A Description of Three Hundred Animals,: Viz. Beasts, Birds, Fishes, Serpents and Insects (London: H Woodall, 1769)

A description of many animals, both real and mythical, with many references to Bestiary attributes. Illustrated with copper plate engravings.

95 pages.

Language: English


Jorge Luis Borges, Margarita Guerrero, Norman Thomas Di Giovanni, trans.

The Book Of Imaginary Beings (London: E. P. Dutton & Company, 1969) [Book]

Borges draws on sources ranging from Chinese legends to the works of Kafka and C. S. Lewis. The 1970 edition of the book describes about 120 "beings", some of which are from the bestiary.

Originally published as Libro de los seres imaginarios. Revised, enlarged and translated by Norman Thomas di Giovanni in collaboration with the author.

Republished: Cape, 1970; Avon, 1970; Penguin, 1984.

256 pp., index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-14-003709-8; LC: GR825; DDC: 398/.469; LCCN: 78-87180; OCLC: 12511080


Jean Henri Bormans

Thomas de Cantimpré : indiqué comme une des sources où Albert-le-Grand et surtout Maerlant ont puisé les matériaux de leurs écrits sur l'histoire naturelle (Brussels: Academie Royale de Belgique, 1800s) [Book]

Thomas de Cantimpre as a source for the natural histories of Albertus Magnus and Jacob van Maerlant.

"Academie Royale de Belgique. Extr. du t. XIX, no. 1, des Bulletins." 30 p.

Language: French
OCLC: 43153611


C. A. Bos, B. Baljet

Cynocephali and Blemmyae. Congenital anomalies and medieval exotic races (Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd, December, 1999, page 143-151) [Journal article]

"In the mediaeval Dutch manuscript Der naturen bloeme ('On the flowers of nature') by Jacob van Maerlant (circa 1230-circa 1296), an encyclopaedia of descriptions of people, animals, plants and minerals dating from about 1270, many illustrations refer to the text. An intriguing part of the book is called 'Vreemde volkeren' ('Exotic people'). In another manuscript of Van Maerlant, Dit is die istory van Troyen ('The history of Troyes') in the chapter 'De wonderen van het Verre Oosten' ('The miracles of the Far East') the exotic people are also described. These exotic people have many features similar to congenital malformations. 'Hippopodes' are probably based on the lobster claw syndrome, 'Cynocephali' on anencephaly, 'Arimaspi' on cyclopia, 'Blemmyae' on acardiacus, the double-faced on diprosopus, 'Sciopods' on polydactyly and 'Antipodes' on the sirenomelia sequence."

Language: Dutch


Robert Bossuat

Le Roman de Renart (Paris: 1967) [Book]

Language: French


Yoan Boudes

La philosophe à la licorne. Savoir de l’animal et savoir de l’homme dans la Physica de Hildegarde de Bingen (RursuSpicae: Transmission des textes et savoirs de l’Antiquité à la fin du Moyen Âge, 2020; Series: 3 (La conversation des encyclopédistes))

The Woman Philosopher with the Unicorn. Animal Knowledge and Human Knowledge in Hildegard of Bingen’s Physica

Hildegard of Bingen, abbess and mystic of the twelfth century, devotes a significant part of her scientific writings to the animal world. Through the many records of the last four books of her Physica, she studies the fauna according to traditional criteria of presentation. To some extant, she follows informations that could also be found in encyclopaedias and bestiaries, composed and wide spread in Europe through the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. These texts share the same classic and late antique authoritative sources on animals, such as Aristotle, Pliny the Elder, Isidore of Seville and the Physiologus. However, Hildegard seems to take distance from these genres. This article aims to outline her peculiar and personal choices. We show that Hildegard builds for herself an innovative and visionnary autorship figure while recomposing the traditional medieval discourse about fauna in order to reach her own philosophical goal. For example, she tends to leave out the injunctive tone and catechetical purpose of the allegorical writings, as comparisons with the Latin bestiaries could illustrate. Hildegard rather aims for the “subtilities”, invisible and underlying links established between forms of the living world in the universe. In order to do so, the abbess often recomposes the zoological information that was accessible to her. She gives original notices so as to propose to man a way to achieve the knowledge of the natural world which man is not the only owner. Thereby, she draws attention to the role of sight and proposes original models of knowledge throughout the text of the Physica. - [Abstract]

Language: French
2557-8839; DOI: 10.4000/rursuspicae.1321


Aux seuils du monde animal : le bestiaire médiéval du péritexte au métatexte (Perspectives médiévales, 2021; Series: 42)

The peritextual apparatus described by Gérard Genette is an integral part of medieval book production and medieval studies are equiped to treat these productions in the manuscripts they study, whatever the genres are transmitted by them. However, the genettian terminology is not exactly new to medieval studies and the description of “page layout”, or mise en page is often prefered so as to describe the particularity of pre-print culture. This paper would like to measure the relevance of Genette’s theory through the example of French bestiaries production in order to understand the benefit of the use of peritext as a concept. - [Abstract]

Language: English/French/Italian
2262-5534; DOI: 10.4000/peme.36348


Alixe Bovey

Medieval Monsters (London: British Library, 2015)

An online exhibition of some of the British Library manuscripts that show the monstrous human races and other monstrous beasts.

Language: English


Monsters and Grotesques in Medieval Manuscripts (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2002) [Book]

"...describes the rich and varied symbolism of mosters, as depicted in an extensive range of medieval manuscripts from the British Library's collections, and lends a special insight into the medieval imagination. ... Alixe Bovey was a curator in the Department of Manuscripts at the Biritish Library [now Head of Research at The Courtauld Institute of Art]." - [Cover copy]

64 pp.; extensively illustrated in color; manuscript list, bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8020-8512-1


Jeff Bowersox

A Letter from Prester John (ca. 1165-1170) (Black Central European Studies Network)

A brief description of Prester John and his letter, with an English translation of version of the letter, including the original text and some of the additions.

Language: English


Linda Julian Bowie

'All's Fowl in Love and War': Birds in Medieval Literature (Furman Studies, 30, 1984, page 1-17) [Journal article]

Language: English


R. Bowler

Walters Ms. W.199, Gossouin of Metz, Image du Monde (From the Page, 2021)

An incomplete transcription of L'Image du Monde by Gossuin de Metz from manuscript Walters Art Museum, Ms. W.199.

Language: English/French


Evelyn Mae Boyd

The Lure of Creatures True and Legendary (Canada: Davis & Henderson Limited, 1978) [Book]

A series of stories, based partly on Chinese folklore. Two stories involve the fox-trickster character of Yakan, messenger of Inari, goddess of the rice harvest.

Also includes an essay, "The Mythic Panther", comparing the Panther of the Physiologus with the panther in the writings of Aristotle, Pliny the Elder, and Aelian, with reference to other classical and medieval writers.

Boyd was Professor of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Grinnell College, Iowa, and Waterloo University, Ontario.

Language: English


Hans Brandhorst

Castoreum en bevergeil (Koninklijke Bibliotheek, 2003) [Digital article]

A short article on the castration theme represented by the beaver.

Language: Dutch


De Ouderliefde van de pelikaan (Koninklijke Bibliotheek, 2003) [Digital article]

A short article on the bestiary pelican theme, with illustrations.

Language: Dutch


Ernest Brehaut

An Encyclopedist of the Dark Arges: Isidore of Seville (New York: Columbia University Studies in History, Economics and Public Law, 1912; Series: 48) [Book]

A biography of Isidore of Seville, followed by an English translation of selections of the Etymologies. The introduction includes: Isidore's life and writings; Isidore's relation to previous culture.

Reprinted in 1972 by Burt Franklin Reprints, New York.

274 p., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: English


Laurence A. Breiner

The Career of the Cockatrice (Isis, 70:1 (March), 1979, page 30-47) [Journal article]

The author traces the changes in the name cockatrice, relating it to the crocodile, regulus and basilisk through references to various classical and medieval writers. The use of the cockatrice in alchemy is also examined.

Language: English


Adam Bremer-McCollum

Old Georgian phrases and sentences 67 (Physiologus § 13) (hmmlorientalia Blog, 2015; Series: September 18, 2015)

The text this time is longer than others in the series, but here is the whole of Physiologus § 13 in Georgian. The Georgian version was published by (in asomtavruli, with Armenian) and later by Gigineišvili and E. Giunašvili. - [Author]

Language: English/Georgian


K. Brewer

Talking wolves, golden fish, and lion sex: The alterations to gerald of wales's topographia hibernica as evidence of audience disbelief? (Parergon, 2020; Series: Volume 37, Issue 1)

In his Topographia Hibernica, Gerald of Wales describes many Irish wonders, including talking werewolves, animal-human hybrids, and bestiality. Version III, written c. 1189-93 (after a recitation in Oxford in 1188/9), defends the truth of these particular wonders. Gerald's reactive revisions endorse the reality of the unnamed critic he attacks in the Expugnatio Hibernica (first written in 1189), whose objections seem to concern hexameral categories. The Oxford recitation of 1188/9 was probably where the critic raised these objections. A later critic, William de Montibus, bemoaned Gerald's consideration of bestiality as a legitimate object of ethnological discourse.

Language: English
ISSN: 0313-6221; DOI: 10.1353/PGN.2020.0057


Keagan Brewer

Prester John: The Legend and its Sources (Routledge, 2019)

The legend of Prester John has received much scholarly attention over the last hundred years, but never before have the sources been collected and coherently presented to readers. This book now brings together a fully-representative set of texts setting out the many and various sources from which we get our knowledge of the legend. These texts, spanning a time period from the Crusades to the Enlightenment, are presented in their original languages and in English translation (for many it is the first time they have been available in English). ... In order to orient the reader, each of these iterations is explained in the comprehensive introduction, and in the introductions to texts and sections. ... The book is completed with three valuable appendices: a list of all known references to Prester John in medieval and early modern sources, a thorough description of the manuscript traditions of the all-important Prester John Letter, and a brief description of Prester John in the history of cartography. - [Publisher]

Language: English
ISBN: 978-0-367-87904-4


Jean Francois Brichant

Bestiare taurin: Symbole et mythe (Liege: University de Liege, 1985) [Dissertation]

"Bull Bestiary: Symbol and Myth." Degree dissertation at the University de Liege.

Language: French
PQDD: 3163C


Lester Burbank Bridaham

Gargoyles, Chimeres, and the Grotesque in French Gothic Sculpture (New York: Da Capo Press, 1969; Series: Architecture and Decorative Art 21) [Book]

A survey of French stone and wood sculpture in the 12th and 13th centuries. There are some animal images in the plates.

230 p. (10 p. text introduction, 220 p. black & white photographic plates), bibliography.

Language: English
LCCN: 68-27724; LC: NB543.B71969


Mark Brisbane

Love Letters to Bare Bones: A Comparison of Two Types of Evidence for the Use of Animals in Medieval Novgorod (in Mark Maltby, Medieval Animals, Cambridge: Archaeological Review from Cambridge 18, 2002, page 100-118) [Book article]

Language: English


British Library

Books of Beasts in the British Library: the Medieval Bestiary and its context (London: British Library)

A virtual tour of the Bestiary manuscripts in the British Library, with many illustrations. Sections: The origins of the medieval bestiary; English bestiaries and their beasts; Beast studies and beast stories; Beasts in the margins; Further reading.

Language: English


Medieval Bestiary: The Crane (London: British Library)

Collections of animal legends helped to explain the living world. Inspired by a story in an early medieval illustrated bestiary (Harley MS 4751), this animation explores the life of the crane.

Video, 2:20 minutes, animated, with transcription

Language: English


Medieval Bestiary: The Whale (London: British Library)

The Whale was the terror of the seas, a danger to sailors who often mistook it for an island and anchored their ships on its back. Inspired by a tale from an illustrated medieval bestiary (Harley MS 4751), this animation explores the life of the sea-creature beneath the waves.

Video, 1:37 minutes, animated

Language: English


R. van den Broek

Carmen Brown

Bestiary lessons on pride and lust (in Debra Hassig, ed., The Mark of the Beast: The Medieval Bestiary in Art, Life, and Literature, New York: Garland, 1999, page 53-70) [Book article]

Investigates the animals associated with the most deadly sin of pride, as part of bestiary instruction.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8153-2952-0


Katherine A. Brown

The Vernacular Universe: Gossuin de Metz’s Image du Monde, Translatio Studii, and Vernacular Narrative (Viator: Medieval and Renaissance Studies, 2013; Series: Volume 44, Issue 2)

This article argues that Gossuin de Metz’s Image du monde is indebted to both the Latin encyclopedic tradition and vernacular narrative, particularly the romances of Chrétien de Troyes. As the first vernacular encyclopedia, the Image du monde forges space as a new genre by combining these previous forms through the key notion of translatio studii. Not only is the medieval encyclopedia dependent on the transfer of knowledge from one language and culture to another, but Gossuin’s deployment of the translatio topos throughout his work evokes vernacular narratives. In this way, the Image du monde performs a transmission of learning from Latin to the vernacular as well as a transfer of scientific knowledge from a clerical audience to a broader audience familiar with narrative. The three different redactions of the Image du monde, although not all attributed to Gossuin, relate to Old French narratives particularly through the prosification of romance. - [Abstract]

Language: English
2031-0234; : 


Michele P. Brown

Gerald of Wales and the "Topography of Ireland": Authorial Agendas in Word and Image (Journal of Irish Studies , 2005; Series: Volume 20)

Gerald composed the Topography in 1186-8, after his travels in Ireland in 1183 and with Prince John in 1185. He produced a second edition before Henry II's death in 1189, followed by a third, fourth and various ‘late’ editions before his death in 1223. I shall suggest that his sojourn in Lincoln from 1196-8 may well have witnessed the formulation of an illustrative programme by Gerald or under his supervision, or that he may already have formulated it and have introduced it to the Lincoln Cathedral scriptorium. Of the surviving early manuscript copies, that in the National Library of Ireland in Dublin is closest to the original core of this programme, whilst that in the British Library in London probably represents a visual and textual elaboration by those who knew the author at Lincoln, probably conducted under his personal supervision, either during his stay there in 1196-8 or following his retirement to Lincoln from 1207 / 1208. - [Author]

Language: English


Marvels of the West: Giraldus Cambrensis and the Role of the Author in the Development of Marginal Illustration (English Manuscript Studies (British Library), 10, 2002, page 34-59) [Journal article]

The manuscripts of the Topographia Hibernica and other works by Giraldus Cambrensis (Gerald of Wales) are examined, with particular focus on the marginal illustrations. The author proposes that Giraldus was involved in the program of marginal illustrations for the manuscripts of his works. The author also makes comparisons to the illustrations and text of the bestiary manuscripts. - [Abstract]

Language: English
ISBN: 0-7123-4732-1; LC: Z115E5E55


Robert Brown, Jr.

The Unicorn: A Mythological Investigation (London: Longmans Green & Co., 1881) [Book]

This little brochure is a contribution, however humble, to the science of psychology; not merely a notice of curious, still less of idle, fancies. The study of man to be successful must commence with his earlier, that is to say, simpler, phases. The 'solar myth,' vaguely so called, is often ridiculed but never by anyone who has carefully examined it; and the history of the Lion and the Unicorn exhibits one aspect of the ideas of Time and Kosmic Order as shown in the most obvious divisions of period - Day and Night. The indirect influence of our present civilization and the repetition of phenomena produce a sadly deadening effect upon the vast majority of minds as regards appreciation of the external world, and render it extremely difficult for us to place ourselves near the mental standpoint of primitive, or even of archaic, man. We do not wonder at the sun, or at the genius which has contrived by the use of only ten signs to express any number, or indeed at anything which, though marvellous in itself, is somewhat familiar to the senses and ordinary apprehension. Even scientific research often resolves itself into an anatomical dissection, which is equivalent to the knowledge of the way about a cathedral, combined with an appreciation of the principles of masonry, but accompanied by total ignorance of, or utter indifference to, the real forces which produced the building. With respect to the evidence adduced in the particular case, its combined weight is specially to be considered; the various points are not links in a chain, the failure in any one of which is fatal, but items in a description. - [Author]


Thomas Brown, James Eason, ed.

Pseudodoxia Epidemica: Or, Enquiries into very many Received Tenents and commonly presumed Truths (1646, 1672) [Book]

Also known as "Vulgar Errors", this seventeenth-century text is an attempt to correct the many "errors" in earlier texts. Book 3, "Of divers popular and received Tenents concerning Animals, which examined, prove either false or dubious" describes and debunks many of the fabulous stories told about animals in the Middle Ages.

Language: English


Laurent Brun

Barthelemy of England (Archives de littérature du Moyen Âge (ARLIMA), 2023)

Information on Bartholomaeus Anglicus and his encyclopedia, De proprietatbus rerum. Includes a (partial) list of manuscripts, and lists of editions and studies.

Language: French


Gerald of Wales (Archives de littérature du Moyen Âge (ARLIMA), 2022)

Reference page for the works of Gerald of Wales. Lists of works, manuscripts, bibliography.

Language: French


Gossuin de Metz (Archives de littérature du Moyen Âge (ARLIMA), 2022)

A list of the manuscripts of L'Image du Monde by Gossuin de Metz, plus references to editions, studies and translations of the work.

Language: French


Jacob van Maerlant (Archives de littérature du Moyen Âge (ARLIMA), 2022)

Information on the works of Jacob van Maerlant, including Der Naturen Bloems. With bibliographies, lists of manuscripts, and references to editions.

Language: French


Pierre de Beauvais (Archives de littérature du Moyen Âge (ARLIMA), 2021)

A listing of all the known works by Pierre de Beauvais (including the Bestiaire, with references to manuscripts and a bibliography.

Language: French


Richard de Fournival (Archives de Littérature du Moyen Age (ARLIMA), 2022)

A list of the works of Richard de Fournival, including extensive bibliographies and lists of manuscripts with links to descriptions.

Language: French


Emma Brunner-Traut

Agyptische Mythen im Physiologus (zu Kapitel 26, 25 und 11) (in Wolfgang Helck, ed., Festschrift für Siegfried Schott zu Seinem 70. Geburtstag am 20. August 1967, Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz, 1968, page 13-44) [Book article]

A discussion of Egyptian myths found in the Physiologus, with references (including hieroglyphics) from many manuscripts and other sources.

Language: German
LC: PJ1026.S3


Murray Peabody Brush

The Isopo Laurenziano (Columbus, OH: Lawrence Press, 1899)

The Italian versions of the Fables of Aesop and other Italian fable collections. Includes a list of manuscripts.

Includes a transcription of Aesop's fables (in Italian) from Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Plut.42.30. "Edited with notes and an introduction treating of the interrelation of the Italian fable collection".

Language: English


Christian Bruun

De Illuminerede Haandskrifter fra Middelalderen i Det Store Kongelige Bibliothek (Copenhagen: Kongelige Bibliothek, 1890) [Book]

A catalog of manuscripts held by the Kongelige Bibliotek (Copenhagen), including two bestiaries:

Bestiary of Ann Walsh (Gl. kgl. S. 1633 4*) - Page 117-118.

Bestiare (Gl. kgl. S. 3466 8*) - Page 93.

Language: Danish


Alfredo Bryce Echenique

Sirenas, monstruos y leyendas: bestiario marítimo (Segovia: Sociedad Estatal Lisboa, 1998; Series: Coleccion Los narradores y el mar 6) [Book]

Introduccion de Rafael de Cozar.

120 p.

Language: Spanish
ISBN: 84-95152-02-9; LCCN: 00296420


Walter Buckl

Megenberg aus zweiter Hand : uberlieferungsgeschichtliche Studien zur Redaktion B des Buchs von den naturlichen Dingen (Hildesheim ; New York: Olms, 1993; Series: Germanistische Texte und Studien, Bd. 42) [Book]

Redaction B of Das Buch der Natur by Konrad von Megenberg.

Revision of the author's thesis (doctoral) - Katholische Universitat Eichstatt, 1990.

Language: German
ISBN: 3-487-09733-8; LCCN: 93-194631; LC: QH41.K753; DDC: 508; OCLC: 28801502


John Bugge

The Virgin Phoenix (Mediaeval Studies, 38, 1976, page 332-350) [Journal article]

Language: English


Curt F. Bühler

Studies in the Early Editions of the "Fiore di virtù" (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1958; Series: The Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America Vol. 49, No. 4 (Fourth Quarter, 1955))

Research on the Fiore di virtù, a fifteenth century Italian book of animal fables and moralizations.

Language: English


Kirill Bulychev

Fantasticheskii bestiarii (Sankt-Peterburg: Izd-vo KN, 1995; Series: Antologiia tain, chudes i zagadok) [Book]

258 p., illustrations.

Language: Russian
ISBN: 5-88756-013-4; LCCN: 96174761; LC: GR825.B851995


Thierry Buquet

"Bieste à chief d’oliphant”. L’anabulla dans la Chevalerie Judas Maccabée (Paris, BnF, Fr. 15104) inspirée du Liber de natura rerum de Thomas de Cantimpré (Reinardus, 2019; Series: 30)

The Chivalry of Judas Maccabee and His Noble Brothers, a verse novel dated 1285, repeatedly uses animals as symbolic narrative motifs. Certain animals (including the anabulla, one of the names for the giraffe in the 13th century) are borrowed from the Liber de natura rerum (LDNR) by Thomas de Cantimpré. The analysis of the text of La Chevalerie and the illustration of its only manuscript witness (Paris, BnF Fr. 15104) shows that the author was not inspired by the text of Thomas de Cantimpré, but by the illustration of the manuscript 320 of Valenciennes (witness of the LDNR), whose iconographic program (of which the instructions for the illuminator have been preserved in the marginal notes) presents deviations from the textual content – ??errors which will be transmitted in later illuminated witnesses of the LDNR. Thus, the anabulla and the aloy are represented there as elephants, whereas it is respectively a giraffe and an elk. The author of La Chevalerie describes these two animals as elephants in his novel, thereby showing that his source is not the Latin text of the LDNR, but “faulty” illustrations of a particular handwritten witness. - [Abstract]

Language: French
DOI: 10.1075/rein.00013.buq; HALId: halshs-02106597


Dyrin, un programme de recherche sur la faune du Grand Nord (University of Caen Normandy, 2017; Series: Les Échos du Craham, 24/01/2017)

Dyrin is not an acronym: it is a word from the Scandinavian languages, the plural of dyr , which means "animal". The Dyrin project aims to create a corpus of texts relating to the knowledge of Arctic and subarctic fauna from Late Antiquity up to 1600. The main axis will be the transmission of zoological knowledge on this fauna which was still poorly known before explorations of the modern era. As a counterpoint to the research carried out on the history of exotic African and Asian fauna, work on the fauna of the Far North will make it possible to better understand a zoological exoticism coming from the cold, for animals even less well known than the fauna of the south, the ancient zoology having transmitted very little information about them. - [Author]

Language: French


Décrire les couleurs de la girafe (Presses universitaires François Rabelais, 2021; Series: Dans l’atelier de Michel Pastoureau. Hommages de nombreux amis et collègues)

In his Liber de natura rerum, Thomas de Cantimpré says of the giraffe (oraflus) that it is impossible to convey the variety of colors with which it is marked (pellem vero ita diversimode notatam omnium colorum generibus, ut frustra homo temptet artificio naturalem eius pulcritudinem imitari). The image illustrates a handwritten witness to the versified translation into Middle Dutch by Jacob van Maerlant of Thomas1's Liber de natura rerum. This translation is faithful to the Latin original for the passage that interests us; the miniaturist (who had probably never seen a giraffe) tried to take literally what the text says, and represented the multi-colored appearance of the quadruped with distinct bands, blue, yellow, green and red. This difficulty in describing and representing the color and structure of the giraffe's coat was common in medieval times.

Language: French
978-2-86906-788-2; HALId: halshs-03437206


Fact Checking: Can Ostriches Digest Iron? (Medieval Animal Data Network (blog on, 2013)

One of the most striking imaginary properties about an animal in the Middle Ages concerns the ostrich's ability to eat and digest iron. The paper presents several experiments which took place both in Islamic and Christian areas, from the tenth to the sixteenth century, trying to check if this legend was true or not, even if the result was the killing of the animal.

Language: English
HALId: halshs-00905413


La faune exotique dans le Liber de natura rerum de Thomas de Cantimpré. Quels nouveaux apports? (Louvain-la-Neuve: CRAHAM - Centre Michel de Boüard - Centre de recherches archéologiques et historiques anciennes et médiévales, 2022; Series: Bilan et perspectives des études sur les encyclopédies médiévales : Orient-Occident, le ciel, l’homme, le verbe, l’animal (Textes, Études, Congrès (33))

Speculum Arabicum Intersecting Perspectives on Medieval Encyclopaedism. Proceedings of the International Conference at Louvain-la-Neuve and Cambron-Casteau, 22-24 May 2017.

In the Middle Ages, the knowledge of exotic foreign fauna (African and Indian) owes much to the transmission of ancient authors (Aristotle, Pliny, Solin) and the first Christian authors (Physiologus, Isidore of Seville, Fathers of the Church). Yet we observe, especially in the 13th century, the appearance of new knowledge in encyclopedias and other related natural history texts. This new knowledge owes little to ancient authorities and is the result of new contributions, linked to direct observation (animals in menageries) or to vernacular knowledge (travellers, merchants, hunters, fishermen, sailors, etc.). This is particularly the case for the little-known animals of northern Europe, highlighting an exoticism from the cold, in the context of increased exchanges with the Scandinavian world. The presentation will attempt to highlight these contributions, particularly in the introduction of new species or new zoonyms in the inventory of the living world, but also in the additional information provided on ancient knowledge. Our investigation will focus mainly on Thomas of Cantimpré and Albert the Great, with additions from Bartholomaeus Anglicus, Vincent of Beauvais and Alexander Neckam. We will try to highlight the fundamental contribution of Thomas de Cantimpré in this enrichment of the medieval exotic animal world, by comparing it with the approach of his contemporaries. - [Abstract]

Language: French
HAL: hal-02139436


La girafe moralisée (Zürich: XXIe congrès de la société internationale renardienne, 2015)

Isidore of Seville reports, according to Pliny, the existence of the camelopardalis, described as a spotted animal, reminiscent of the leopard, the camel, the horse and the ox. The Ordinary Gloss will take up and comment on this description in a list of animals from Deuteronomy. The Middle Ages were unaware for a long time that this “camel-leopard” referred to the giraffe, very rarely seen in Europe in medieval times. This “philological” animal, with its disparate forms, has sometimes given rise to allegorical comments, from Raban Maur to the moralized encyclopedias of the 13th and 14th centuries, based in particular on Isidore and the Gloss. Each element of the description of this animal will serve as support for moral exegesis: cloven hooves, spots, neck, as well as rumination, noted by Barthélemy l’Anglais by analogy with the camel and the biblical laws on clean animals. Between description inherited from Antiquity and presence in the Bible, the camelopardalis, despite its status as a philological animal, disconnected from any zoological reality, will give rise to a wide variety of moral interpretations.

Language: French
HALId: halshs-01308128


La girafe, belle inconnue des bibles médiévales. Camelopardalis : un animal philologique (Anthropozoologica, 2008; Series: 43 (2))

The Bible, in its Latin version, contributed to call attention to the Christian Occident to the existence of the camelopardalis (camel-panther or camel-leopard), a term referring to the giraffe in Greek and Latin in the Antiquity, and which had been used to translate a misidentified Hebrew zoonym, the zemer. While the giraffe remained unknown in Europe for a long time, only a brief notice by Pliny transmitted to the Middle Ages some information on the camelopardalis, in a lacunar description, omitting for example the height of the animal and the characteristic size of its neck, preventing from recognizing there a “true” giraffe, in particular when some specimens were brought from Egypt to be offered to the king Alfonso X of Spain and to the emperor Frederic II in the XIIIth century. While at that time the modern name for giraffe is formed on the Arab zarâfa, no literary or zoological text, no translation, no exegesis manage to connect this new animal, with the new vernacular name, to the ancient camelopardalis. The giraffe and the “camel-leopard” seem to have became then perfectly distinct animals. The translations in vernacular languages of the Bible from the Latin fail to correctly interpret this obscure animal, dubious, which seems to have only a philological reality. When giraffes make their return at the end of XVth century in Italy, several humanists then recognize in the giraffa the kamelopardalis recently translated and published from Greek texts. The erudition then makes it possible to reconcile book learning with observation of a “true” animal. The “real” giraffe then makes its return in the biblical exegesis of the XVIth and XVIIth centuries, the question of the translation of the Hebrew zemer also stimulating the scientific investigations on the giraffe of Conrad Gesner, Ulysses Aldrovandi and Samuel Bochart, transforming an exceptional exotic animal into a philological animal par excellence. - [Abstract]

Language: French
HALId: halshs-00352040


Le guépard médiéval, ou comment reconnaître un animal sans nom (Reinardus. Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 2011; Series: Volume 23, Issue 1)

The cheetah, used as a hunting aid in the Iranian-Persian and Arab worlds for millennia, and as such well known and identified in these cultural areas, has long remained a more uncertain animal in the West, still remaining today difficult to locate in medieval sources. Its name “cheetah” appearing in French only in the 17th century, it does not previously seem to have had a name of its own and bears the same zoonym as the panther: that of “leopard”. Likewise, in images, it is sometimes difficult to differentiate the two animals. This contribution therefore attempts to take stock of these confusions by providing some elements helping to identify this unnamed animal in texts and images. The article provides information relating to the literary or documentary context, mainly at the end of the Middle Ages, where the cheetah was part of princely hunting crews, particularly in Italy, as noble as the falcon, but sought after as a luxury and of exotic prestige. - [Abstract]

Language: French
DOI: 10.1075/rein.23.02buq


The Gyrfalcon in the Middle Ages, an Exotic Bird of Prey (Western Europe and Near East) (CRAHAM - Centre Michel de Boüard - Centre de recherches archéologiques et historiques anciennes et médiévales, 2021)

This paper will consider the medieval trade of the Gyrfalcon as an exotic animal. The exoticism the gyrfalcon is considered from two geographical points of view, Western Europe and Islamic lands. The bird was imported in Muslim countries form Northern Europe (through diplomatic gifts or from Italian and Spanish merchants) of from Russia through Central Asia; Gyrfalcons were also popular in Europe, praised as one of the noblest birds of prey. This study emphasizes three main topics. First, the naming of a foreign animal, as the name “Sunkur” was borrowed in Arabic from Turk languages of Central Asia. The medieval Latin Gyrofalco has a German and Old Norse etymology. Second, the paper investigates the geographic origin of this bird (Scandinavia and Russia) according to medieval Latin, Arabic and Persian historians and geographers. Third, the trade of this rare and expensive raptor is studied upon Latin and Arabic sources; during Mamluk dynasty, possessing gyrfalcons have been rather common in Egypt, an elite’s fashion. - [Abstract]

Language: English
HALId: hal-02139381


Les informations relatives à la faune du Nord dans le Liber de natura rerum de Thomas de Cantimpré (RursuSpicae: Transmission des textes et savoirs de l’Antiquité à la fin du Moyen Âge, 2020; Series: 3 (La conversation des encyclopédistes))

Information relating to Northern Fauna in the Liber de natura rerum by Thomas of Cantimpré.

The arctic fauna, very rarely mentioned in Classical texts, is progressively discovered by medieval scholars trough maritime and commercial contacts with Northern peoples. This new information sometimes allows Latin authors to enhance the sketchy data transmitted by Aristotle, Pliny or Solinus. This paper focuses on this kind of zoological information found in Thomas of Cantimpré's Liber de natura rerum (LDNR) through the geographical data given by the author, and through the zoological identification of the species. Thomas’ references on Northern fauna are compared to those found in books on animals written by Alexander Neckam, Vincent of Beauvais, Bartholomaeus Anglicus andAlbertus Magnus, to evaluate which information they share or not in their approach of Northern fauna. - [Abstract]

Language: French
2557-8839; DOI: 10.4000/rursuspicae.1445


Nouveaux apports des encyclopédies médiévales sur la connaissance de la faune exotique. Le cas de Thomas de Cantimpré (Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgique: Université catholique de Louvain, 2017; Series: Bilan et perspectives des études sur les encyclopédies médiévales. Orient-Occident, le ciel, l’homme, le verbe, l’animal)

In the Middle Ages, knowledge of exotic foreign fauna (African and Indian) owed much to the transmission of ancient authors (Aristotle, Pliny, Solin) and the first Christian authors (Physiologus, Isidore of Seville, Fathers of the Church). However, we observe, particularly in the 13th century, the appearance of new knowledge in encyclopedias and other related natural history texts. This new knowledge owes little to ancient authorities and is the result of new contributions, linked to direct observation (menagerie animals) or vernacular knowledge (travelers, merchants, hunters, fishermen, sailors, etc.). This is particularly the case for little-known animals from Northern Europe, highlighting an exoticism coming from the cold, in the context of increased exchanges with the Scandinavian world. The presentation will attempt to highlight these contributions, particularly in the introduction of new species or new zoonyms into the inventory of the living world, but also in the additional information provided on ancient knowledge. Our investigation will mainly focus on Thomas de Cantimpré and Albert the Great, with additional information drawn from Barthélemy l’Anglais, Vincent de Beauvais and Alexander Neckam. We will try to highlight the fundamental contribution of Thomas de Cantimpré in this enrichment of the medieval exotic animal world, by comparing it with the approach of his contemporaries.

Language: French
HALId: halshs-01914290


Preventing “Monkey Business”. Fettered Apes in the Middle Ages (Medieval Animal Data Network (blog on, 2013, 2016)

The practice of keeping monkeys and apes in captivity during the Middle Ages, mainly as pets, is well known. ... This short paper aims to give some examples of the material aspects of keeping and controlling tamed but still savage animals, to prevent them from creating a mess in the home. - [Author]

Language: English
HALId: halshs-00845267


De proprietatibus quorundam animalium. Un bestiaire inédit dans un manuscrit composite contenant divers matériaux pour la prédication (Avranches MS. 28) (RursuSpicae, 2019; Series: 2)

De proprietatibus quorundam animalium. A bestiary in the ms. 28 of Avranches library. The manuscript 28 of Avranches is the result of the binding of two distinct codices in the seventeenth century. It consists of various short religious texts: commentaries and biblical glosses, distinctiones, treatises on vices and virtues, sermons, etc. Among this extensive textual material for the use of predication, we find, in the second part of the manuscript (dating from the 13th century) a bestiary entitled De proprietatibus quorundam animalium (f. 179-180). This is the unique text on animals kept from the library of the Mont Saint-Michel abbey. A short collection of exempla (partly involving animals) is added to the bestiary, and is entitled Ecce similitudines multe de diversis (f. 180-180v). The bestiary and the collection of similitudines seem to form a set which may have had the same use for the compiler. The bestiary is made of about 30 short chapters, from which ten are perfect copies of the B version of the Physiologus; other chapters can be sourced partly in B or Y, but are often summarized and contain original moralizations which differ from other versions of the Latin Physiologus. I am making the assumption that the author of the bestiary of Avranches may have worked from an incomplete witness of B such as in the codex of Bern, Bürgerbibliothek, Lat. 233, where the elephant and the dove are missing, and where ostrich (asida), panther and aspidochelon are found at the end of the text of the B version. The bestiary of Avranches is interesting from a twofold perspective: it is a new (partial) witness of the Physiologus B and an original creation in its composition and the redaction of some chapters which gives evidence of the reception and the use of old versions of the Physiologus among 13th century preachers. - [Abstract]

Language: French
DOI: 10.4000/rursuspicae.540; HALId: hal-02372123


Les "propriétés” des animaux et leur utilisation dans la création des images (Pau, France: University of Pau, 2016; Series: L’école des bêtes)

In medieval encyclopedias, a notice describing an animal can be defined as a succession of different properties (descriptive, behavioral, legendary, medicinal, moral, etc.) taking the form of an assembly of extracts chosen from the works of the Authorities ( Pliny, Isidore, Physiologus, Fathers of the Church, Aristotle, etc.). These properties can be used on the one hand by the illuminator to create an image of the animal, most of the time within the framework of a non-naturalistic representation; on the other hand by the man of the church to create exempla and moralizations, which can be used by the preacher to edify his audience, or by the prelate to write sermons on the basis of exemplary anecdotes taken from nature. In this context, we will focus on the Liber de natura rerum by Thomas de Cantimpré, a 13th century encyclopedia, particularly dedicated to natural history. Manuscript 320 from Valenciennes, dating from around 1290, is one of the oldest illuminated witnesses to the Liber de natura rerum. Each notice is illustrated with an image; the margins of the manuscript preserve a significant number of instructions for the illuminator, written in the vernacular. In a few words or a few lines, these instructions summarize the most significant elements of the instructions to indicate to the illuminator what he must draw. For the most common animals, a simple mention of the animal's common name is sufficient. More complex instructions are drawn from elements of the description, behavioral properties or synthesize an action or a short story, sometimes linked to a legendary property. Based on concrete examples taken from the Valenciennes manuscript – and in particular from the book on fish, which presents the most notes for the illuminator – we will try to understand how this image factory works, thus constituted in the form of a puzzle. from several properties transformed into figurative signs, which can often be presented in the form of well-known iconographic attributes, allowing us to recognize the animal with certainty (the tower on the back of the elephant, the sick man of the caladrius, the tiger's mirror, the camel's humps, etc.). Finally, it will be a question of seeing whether the behavioral or fictional elements taken from the notices to form the images are the same as those chosen by the authors of moralized bestiaries inspired by medieval encyclopedias. In this regard, we will take some examples taken from moralizations inspired by Thomas de Cantimpré, but also from texts using Barthélemy l’Anglais, the two authors sharing the same authorities on natural history and therefore numerous “properties” for each species described.

Language: French
HALId: halshs-01914276


De l'écume au sperme: Hypothèses médiévales sur l’ambre de baleine (Médiévales, 2021; Series: 80)

From Foam to Sperm. Medieval Hypotheses on the Origins of Ambergris

The origin of ambergris has been debated for a long time, from the Middle Ages to modern times. The purpose of this paper is to study the influence of Arabic scholarship on knowledge about ambergris in the medieval West, particularly as transmitted by the medical literature produced in the Salerno school of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Persian and Arabic texts written from the ninth century CE included many hypotheses on the origin of this substance: it was seen as a bitumen, a plant, some kind of solidified sea foam or the excrement of a sea animal; in fact, in each of these cases, the actual process of its transformation was not fully understood (it was not before the eighteenth century). In the Latin world, these explanations were spread by various translations of medical literature, as ambergris was used in perfumes and in medication. Beginning in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, a new conjecture spread in Europe, without any reference to Arabic sources, describing ambergris as the sperm of the whale. Here we try to understand the origin of this legend, in relation to medieval knowledge on organic matters extracted from whales (spermaceti, oil), and possibly linked to other hypotheses mentioned by Arabic authors. - [Abstract]

Language: French
DOI: 10.4000/medievales.11290


Martin Villaxide Burgos

Bestiario de Don Juan de Austria (Siloé, Spain: Siloé Arte y Bibliofilia, 1998) [Book]

Two volumes. Volume 1: facsimile reproduction of the original edition, 484 pags, 370 illustrations, text in (old) Spanish. Volume 2: (modern) Spanish transcription of the text and studies.

Limited edition of 696 numbered books.

Language: Spanish
ISBN: 84-923812-0-5


Ch. S. F. Burnett

What is the "Experimentarius" of Bernardus Silvestris? A Preliminary Survey of the Material (Archives d'histoire doctrinale et littéraire du Moyen Age, 1977; Series: Volume 44)

The Experimenitarius has often been thought of as a witness to Bernardus Silvestris' attitude to astrology, and, therefore, as a potential key to the complex and apparently ambivalent status of the planets and stars in the Cosmographia. Bernardus is claimed to be the translator, rather than the author of the work, but we have no other evidence that he translated from, or was familiar with, Arabic. Hence Hermann of Carinthia has been summoned to his aid, on the grounds that both he and Bernardus had some connection with the School of Chartres, that Hermann addressed a work on the astrolabe to Bernardus, and that there is actually a picture of Hermann facing Euclid, and with his astrolabe in his hand, at the head of two MSS. of the Experimentarius. Of these three pieces of evidence, one is too tenuous and the other two are false. - [Author]

Language: English


E. Jane Burns

Courtly Love: Who Needs It? Recent Feminist Work in the Medieval French Tradition (Signs, 27:1, 2001, page 23-57) [Journal article]

Includes some notes on the Bestiaire d'amour of Richard de Fournival with relation to courtly love.

Language: English


Maurice Burton

The Hedgehog and the Apples (Illustrated London News, August 16, 1952, 264) [Journal article]

The author investigates the feasibility of the hedgehog gathering fruit on its spines.

Language: English


Keith Busby

Codex and context : reading Old French verse narrative in manuscript (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2002)

Includes discussions of some relevant manuscripts containing French verse (e.g. Reynard the Fox).

Language: English


Lawrence Butler

The Labours of the Months and 'The Haunted Tanglewood': aspects of late twelfth-century sculpture in Yorkshire (in R. L. Thomson, ed., A Medieval Miscellany in Honour of Professor John Le Patourel, Leeds: Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society, Proceedings vol. 18, 1982, page 79-95) [Book article]

"This article discusses the subject matter of doorway and capital carvings in Yorkshire churches. The scenes are mainly drawn from the Labours of the Month, the Signs of the Zodiac and the Bestiary, using mid twelfth-century manuscript sources. It is argued that the inspiration was not monastic scriptoria but the cathedral school at York as the majority of the churches were in the patronage of the archbishop Roger de Pont L'Eveque and the senior clergy of the cathedral chapter, most of whom had studied in Capetian France." - Butler

Language: English


Donal Byrne

The illustrations to the early manuscripts of Jean Corbechon's French translation of Bartholemaeus Anglicus' De Proprietatibus rerum: 1372-c.1420 (University of Cambridge, 1981)

In 1372 King Charles V of France received Le livre des propriétés des choses, the translation of Bartholomaeus Anglicus' De proprietatibus rerum. The dissertation is a study of the illustrations of the manuscripts of this text in the period up to c.1420. In Chapter 1 the documentary evidence for copies of the Propriétés in the above period is reviewed, and this is related to the surviving copies. The result is used, along with the evidence of style which will be discussed in Chapter 5, to establish the "First Generation" of manuscripts (the original does not survive) in the period up to c.1410. Chapter 2 discusses the role of the encyclopedia and translation in the circle of Charles V, and relates this to the iconography of the Frontispieces of the First Generation copies. The rest of the iconographical cycles is the subject of Chapter 3, in which it is considered both in relation to the text and to other standard imagery. Chapter 4 offers a reconstruction of the pictorial cycle of the lost original, and looks at some sub-groupings within the First Generation copies. The style and date of the ten early copies is the subject of Chapter 5. Between c.1414 and 1420 five interrelated manuscripts were made which mark a new phase in the illustration of the text. These stem from the circles of the Boucicaut, Egerton, Rohan, and Berry Apocalypse Masters, and form the "Second Generation". They are treated in Chapter 6, whose main themes are patronage, the effects of patronage on iconography, now subjects, and the relationships between "workshops". The final chapter discusses a semi-independent manuscript made before 1420, and this is followed by a detailed Catalogue of the sixteen copies of the Propriétés discussed in the text. - [Abstract]

Language: English
DOI: 10.17863/CAM.31167


Rex imago dei: Charles V of France and the Livre des propriétés des choses (Journal of Medieval History, 1981; Series: Volume 7, Issue 1)

The subject of this paper is the Livre des propriétés des choses, the fourteenth-century French translation [by Jean Corbechon] of the thirteenth-century encyclopedia De proprietatibus rerum [by Bartholomaeus Anglicus]. The translation was made for Charles V of France, and the original copy is lost. Here a reconstruction is offered of the appearance of the frontispiece of the royal exemplar. The textual additions of the translator and the iconography of this frontispiece reveal a new conception of the meaning and usage of the encyclopedia, as well as a concerted attempt to draw this authoritative work into the orbit of royal aims and aspirations. The reconstructed frontispiece also allows us to correct an error, which originates with Montfaucon, concerning the illustration of the original copy of the Livre des propriétés des choses. - [Abstract]

Language: English
DOI: 10.1016/0304-4181(81)90038-5


Two hitherto unidentified copies of the « Livre des Propriétés des choses », from the Royal Library of the Louvre and the Library of Jean de Berry (Scriptorium, 1977; Series: Volume 31, number 1)

This brief notice is a portion of work in progress on the iconographical cycle of the last of the above-mentioned texts: the Livre des propriétés des choses, a French rendering of Bartholomaeus Anglicus' De proprietatibus rerum. The latter is a thirteenth-century ranging ontologically from God and the Angels, through Man, and down to the accidents of matter. For the most part it is, or was used as, a handy compendium of "physical" lore, a Herbal, Lapidary and Bestiary, to take but three examples. ... The proper bases for this study would be the original manuscript and a modern, critical edition of the text. The first has yet to be found, and the second has not yet been prepared. Thus, the of the cycle must begin part of the way into the story — by identifying, dating and grouping as many as possible of the early and using this basis to what came before and study what came after. As part of that work, the present notice has the limited aim of reviewing the earliest documentary to the Livre des propriétés des choses and some identifications of early copies which have been made, of two previously untraced copies and of taking a bird's-eye view of the ensuing picture. - [Author]

Language: English
DOI: 10.3406/scrip.1977.2818


Auguste Cabanes

La Fauna Monstruosa de las Catedrales Medievales. Estudio preliminar de Tibor Chaminaud y Juan Carlos Licastro (Buenos Aires: Enrique Rueda Editor, 1982; Series: Colección La Biblioteca de las Maravillas) [Book]

118 p., illustrations.

Language: Spanish


Charles Cahier, Arthur Martin

Melanges d'archeologie, d'histoire et de littérature, rediges ou recueillis (Paris: Mme Ve Poussielgue-Rusand, 1847-1856; Series: Volume 1-4) [Book]

A massive collection of information on medieval archeology, history and literature.

  • Bestiaries (Latin and French) in volumes 2, 3 and 4, with text from several authors and manuscripts
  • Medieval art
  • Church decoration and ornament

4 volumes, illustrations, plates.

Language: French
LCCN: 16-13417; LC: N5971.C2; OCLC: 23433906


Jean Calvet, Marcel Cruppi

Le Bestiaire de l'antiquité classique (Paris: F. Lanore, 1955) [Book]

212 p.

Language: French
LCCN: 57002337; LC: GR825.C3


Le Bestiaire de la littérature francaise (Paris: F. Lanore, 1954) [Book]

247 pp., illustrations.

Language: French
LC: PQ145.3


Michael Camille

Bestiary or biology? Aristotle's animals in Oxford, Merton College, MS 271 (in Carlos Steel, Guy Guldentops & Pieter Beullens, ed., Aristotle's Animals in the Middle Ages and Renaissance (Mediaevalia Lovaniensia, Series 1: Studia 2), Leuven: Leuven University Press, 1999, page 355-396) [Book article]

...animal representations in Latin manuscripts made for the new university audience, that are found in the treatises that comprise Aristotle's De animalibus remain relatively unknown. ... Starting from the question of whether the mode of animal illustrations in these radically different Latin texts conforms to their divergent philosophical positions, [this paper] will focus on one particularly important thirteenth-century illuminated copy of Aristotle's De animalibus. ... I want to examine the illustrations of ... Merton College Library (Oxford), MS. 271... - [Camille]

Language: English
ISBN: 90-6186-973-0


Gothic Art, Glorious Visions (New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 1996) [Book]

A survey of Gothic art in Europe in the 12th to 14th century. Chapter 4, New Visions of Nature, looks at how nature was represented in sculpture, painting and manuscripts.

192 p., color and black & white illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8109-2701-2; LCCN: 96-3899; LC: N6310.C361996; DDC: 709.02'2-dc20


Thomas P. Campbell

Thematic Unity in the Old English Physiologus (Archiv fur das Studium der Neueren Sprachen und Literaturen, 215:130:1, 1978, page 73-79) [Journal article]

Language: English
ISSN: 0003-8970


Sheila R. Canby

Dragons (in John Cherry, ed., Mythical Beasts, London: British Museum Press/Pomegranite Artbooks, 1995, page 14-43) [Book article]

A discussion of dragons from antiquity through the Middle Ages, with examples from Japan, China, India and Egypt, with additional references to dragons of Islamic and Christian tradition. Color and black & white illustrations.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-87654-606-8


Matteo Capcasa

Fiore di virtù (Venice: Matteo Capcasa, 1493)

Alternate title: Questa sie una utilissima operetta acadauno fidel christiano chiamata Fio de virtu`

A popular introduction to medieval morality, the Flower of Virtue explored humanity’s virtues and vices by means of parallels within the animal kingdom. Full of lore derived from bestiaries, biblical stories, and classical literature, the book provided moral instruction and amusement for young Italian readers of both sexes. Much of the book’s popularity derived from its engaging woodcuts of characteristic animal behaviors, designed by the anonymous “Pico Master,” the leading Venetian book illuminator and woodcut illustrator. - [Princeton University Library catalog].

Probably based on a manuscript copy of Fior de virtu` by Guidotto da Bologna (Biblioteca Nazionale di Napoli, XII.E.11).

Language: Italian
PrincetonUniversityLibrary: exi2017-0004N


Ellie Capeling

Wild World: Visual Representation of Animals in Manuscripts and Early Printed Books (Cambridge: St John's College, University of Cambridge, 2020)

Animals have always lived alongside humans, and the species which currently populate the planet evolved in step with us. Human interactions with the natural world have long inspired elements in mythology, folklore, and art. Visual depictions of animals have served to decorate and illustrate written texts from early manuscripts, through the dawn of the printed book, and up to the present day. These illustrations are charming for their unusual art styles, and unconventional ideas about animals that we are now more familiar with seeing in zoos or on television screens. However, much of the natural world which has inspired human creativity throughout the centuries is now at risk of being destroyed through human interference. This exhibition showcases just some of the interesting examples of animal art that can be found in the manuscripts and early printed books held in the Special Collections of St John’s College Library, as well as presenting relevant facts about the animals themselves and the often sobering nature of their relationship to humans. - [Author]

Language: English


Gian Paolo Caprettini

Imaginaire, savoir et nature: notes sur l'allegorie animale au Moyen Age (Annals of the Archive of "Ferran Valls i Taberner's Library", 9-10, 1991, page 235-247) [Journal article]

Language: French


Erminio Caprotti

Uomo e animale nell'emblematica rinascimentale (Esopo, 49 (March), 1991, page 17-29) [Journal article]

On animal symbolism in Renaissance book illustration, including bestiaries, hermetic treatises, hieroglyphica, and emblem books, 16th-17th centuries.

Language: Italian
ISSN: 0392-9752


James P. Carley

Books seen by Samuel Ward 'in bibliotheca regia', circa 1614 (The British Library Journal, 16, 1990, page p. 89-98) [Journal article]

Language: English


John Leland and the foundations of the Royal Library: the Westminster Inventory of 1542 (Bulletin of the Society for Renaissance Studies, VII, no.1, 18, October, 1989) [Journal article]

Language: English


Francis J. Carmody

De Bestiis et Aliis Rebus and the Latin Physiologus (Speculum, 13:2, 1938, page 153-159) [Journal article]

A detailed analysis of the De Bestiis et Aliis Rebus, attributed to Hugh of St Victor, and its relationship to the Latin version of the Physiologus. Includes a list of the known (as of 1938) Physiologus manuscripts, and a comparison of the text of Bestiis with various Physiologus versions. Oddly, Carmody does not appear to recognize Book I of the De bestiis as being the De avibus by Hugh of Fouilloy; instead he calls it a version of the Physiologus.

Language: English
DOI: 10.2307/2848397


Brunetto Latini's Tresor: Latin Sources on Natural Science (in 12:3 (July)Speculum, 1937, page 359-366) [Book article]

"Mediaeval science is well known to scholars through Latin works, but vulgarizations have commanded far less prestige. Dreyer, for example, mentioned Latini's Tresor (1268 A.D.) very superficially, and was obviously ill informed on the Image du Monde of Gossouin (1245 A.D.). Langlois pointed out that vernacular works are of interest mainly to philologists, who find it difficult to delve into the technical intricacies of the various sciences. Vulgarizations, however, present a valuable picture of the subjects they treat. The Tresor is a compendium of material current in Paris in the active days of the 1260's, when astronomy was at its height, both in technical achievement and in speculative interpretation. Latini was a competent translator and compiler, and was guilty neither of the unorganized agglomeration of details found in the Livre de Sydrac and the translations of Adelard of Bath, nor the mistaken moralizing and theological zeal of Gossouin. One must turn to Vincent of Beauvais to find anything like the freedom from doctrine and the careful method and selection of the Tresor. Latini's manner was so objective that it annoyed many of the first copyists, who added doctrinal and moral references, present in most families of manuscripts. As a vulgarization, the Tresor makes no pretension to scholastic reasoning and deduction, nor to metaphysical subtlety, transmutations of elements, atomic theory, nor to mathematical discussion, elements which characterize so many thirteenth-century works. The material is of a simple nature, akin to Seneca, Bede, and Honorius, though there is no apparent affinity to other popular works like those of Chalcidius, Macrobius, and Pliny, nor to the classics, Aristotle, Plato, Plutarch, Lucretius, or Cicero." - Carmody

Language: English


Le Diable des Bestiaires (Cahiers de l'Association Internationale de Études françaises, Nos. 3-5, Juillet, 1953, page 79-85) [Journal article]

Language: French


Latin Sources of Brunetto Latini's World History (Speculum, 11:3 (July), 1936, page 359-370) [Journal article]

"Originality or artistry in an encyclopaedia are likely to defeat the purpose of science, which seeks accuracy, simplicity, and convenience. These last virtues are those of Vincent's Speculum Naturale and of Brunetto Latini's Tresor (1268 A.D.), at least in accordance with thirteenth-century standards. ... Li Tresors did not seek out controversial points, it desired merely to vulgarize as much and as varied knowledge as possible. Nevertheless, Li Tresors was carefully composed and based on standard source materials. Latini was a capable scholar, and his epitome is concise, clear, and not too detailed for the ordinary reader. He was not bound to reproduce his sources literally, so he added personal ideas and recollections from other reading, though never distorting the facts. Sermonizing and moralizing, whose bad effects are evident in the Image du Monde, do not find any place whatsoever in Latini's encyclopaedia. Latini's method of compilation is evident from a study of his sources. He had before him, at one time or another, a number of standard works; from these he made notes on special topics, such as the history of a certain country, limiting himself naturally to a single sufficient source for a given chapter. Thus it is that several sections have been derived in full from a single source, which may have been completely put aside in later pages. Other chapters, however, seemed insufficient as prepared from a single source, so Latini added further details from other works." - Carmody

Language: English


Physiologus Latinus Versio Y (University of California Press, University of California Publications in Classical Philology, Volume 12 (1933-1944), 1944, page 95-134) [Journal article]

An edition of the Physiologus 'Y' version. Introduction in English, text in Latin. Includes a bibliography.

Language: English
LCCN: 41002431; LC: PA25.C3; DDC: 880.8; OCLC: 3889664


Physiologus Latinus: Éditions préliminaires versio B (Paris: Librairie E. Droz, 1939) [Book]

An edition of the Physiologus 'B' version.

Language: Latin
LCCN: 40000253; LC: PA4273.P8L31939; OCLC: 459089307


Physiologus, the very ancient book of beasts, plants and stones, translated from Greek and othe languages (San Francisco: Book Club of California, 1953; Series: Publication no. 85) [Book]

Translated from Greek and other languages, by Francis J. Carmody.

"The illustrations, hand colored, have been engraved on and printed from linoleum blocks./ 325 copies ... made by Vivien & Mallette Dean" - Colophon.

75 p., color illustrations.

Language: English
LCCN: 54027844; LC: GR820.P48; DDC: 398.3


Quotations in the Latin Physiologus from Latin Bibles earlier than the Vulgate (University of California Press, University of California Publications in Classical Philology 13:1, 1944, page 1-8) [Journal article]

Language: English
LCCN: 44000030; LC: PA25.C3; DDC: 878.9; OCLC: 9523977


Francesco Carpaccioni

La nature des animaus nel Tresor di Brunetti latini. Indagine sulle fonti (in Baudouin Van den Abeele, ed., Bestiaires médiévaux. Nouvelles perspectives sur les manuscrits et les traditions textuelles, Louvain-la-Neuve: Institut d’études médiévales, 2005, page 31-47) [Book article]

Language: French


Eleanor M. Carr

Some Early Sources of the Medieval Bestiary (New York: New York University, Institute of Fine Arts, 1964) [Dissertation]

M.A. Thesis.

Language: English


Annamaria Carrega, Paola Navone

Le Proprietà  degli animali (Genova: Costa & Nolan, 1983; Series: Testi della cultura italiana 5) [Book]

The Bestiario moralizzato by Bosone da Gubbio, died ca. 1349 (Annamaria Carrega, editor) and the Libellus de natura animalium (Paola Navone, editor). Texts in Italian and Latin, with introductory material in Italian.

521 pp., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Italian
ISBN: 88-7648-011-0; LC: PQ4554.R15


Richard Carrington

Mermaids and Mastodons: A Book of Natural & Unnatural History (London: Chatto and Windus, 1957) [Book]

"The first part of this book is devoted mainly to fabulous animals, whoes origin I have tried to trace in the real birds and beasts of the living world." - Carrington, preface

Relevant chapters include: The Natural History of Mermaids; The Great Sea Serpent; The Kraken and other Sea Monsters; Dragons of East and West; Fabulous Ornithology.

251 pp., black & white illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English


Rosa Casapullo, ed.

Lo diretano bando: Conforto et rimedio delli veraci e leali amadori ()

Italian language translation of Richard de Fournival, Le Bestiaire d' amour (The Bestiary of Love).

192 pp.

Language: Italian


Cathedral of Girona

The Tapestry of Creation (Cathedral of Girona) [Web page]

The Tapestry of Creation is a eleventh- or twelfth-century work held by the treasury of the Cathedral of Gerona, Spain. Two sections of the tapestry are of interest: the creation of the animals, and Adam naming the animals. Both show various real and fabulous beasts in brilliant colors.

The Cathedral web site is difficult to navigate and has very little information on the tapestry, but it does have some good pictures.

Language: English


Guglielmo Cavallo

De rerum naturis : Cod. Casin. 132, Archivio dell'Abbazia di Montecassino (Turino: Priuli & Verlucca, 1994) [Book]

Full-color facsimile of 11th-century manuscript (Archivio dell'Abbazia, Montecassino, MS 132) of De rerum naturis or De universo of Hrabanus Mauris, the oldest illustrated version extant, produced at Montecassino for Abbot Theobald. Commentary volume edited by Guglielmo Cavallo. Text in Latin, commentary in Italian; accompanied by summary in English (47 p.). Limited edition of 500 Arabic numbered copies.

Volume 1: 530 p., color illustrations (facsimile); Volume 2: commentary, 215 p., bibliography; Volume 3: 47p., English commentary.

Language: Italian / Latin
LC: ND3399.H79; OCLC: 54256169


L'Universo medievale : il manoscritto cassinese del De rerum naturis di Rabano Mauro (Ivrea: Priuli & Verlucca, 1996) [Book]

The manuscript of De rerum naturis or De universo of Hrababus Mauris at Montecassino.

63 p., color illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Italian
ISBN: 88-8068-048-X; LCCN: 97-125526; LC: AE2.H72; OCLC: 36047082


Megan Cavell

Spiders Behaving Badly in the Middle English Physiologus,the Bestiaire Attributed to Pierre de Beauvais and Odo of Cheriton’s Fables (Neophilologus, 2020; Series: 104)

Two remarkably similar depictions of spiders survive in Middle English and French sources from the middle of the thirteenth century. Both of these vernacular versions of the Physiologus deviate so wildly from their sources when it comes to describing these creatures that their editors have declared these passages to be entirely original. And yet, the spiders who survive in the Middle English Physiologus and the long version of the Bestiaire attributed to Pierre de Beauvais perform such similar work that their originality may be called into question. The Physiologus’ and Bestiaire’s descriptions of spiders’ violent hunting methods were likely informed by the burgeoning of natural history writing that accompanied the recovery of Aristotle’s History of Animals, but for these texts’ allegorical interpretations I argue that we should look to Odo of Cheriton’s Latin fables from earlier in the thirteenth century. There is an explicit link between Odo’s fables and the Middle English Physiologus and implicit connections with the French Bestiaire. Together, these analogues demonstrate a small but coherent tradition of emphasizing the diabolical violence of spiders in the multilingual environment of thirteenth-century England and France. - [Abstract]

Language: English
DOI: 10.1007/s11061-020-09645-7; ProQuestID: 2471553060


The The Medieval Bestiary in English: Texts and Translations of the Old and Middle English Physiologus (Guelph, Ontario: Broadview Press, 2022)

First written in Egypt between the second and fourth centuries, the Physiologus brought together poetic descriptions of animals and their Christian allegories. As the Physiologus was translated into a wide range of languages from across North Africa and much of Europe, each version adapted the text in culturally specific ways that yield fascinating insights for those who delve into this truly global tradition of representing and interpreting animals. This edition provides the original texts and facing-page modern translations of the only two surviving English versions—the Old English Physiologus from the late-tenth-century Exeter Book and the Middle English Physiologus from the mid-thirteenth-century British Library, Arundel MS 292—as well as translations of a range of Latin, French, and Old English sources and analogues. Underpinned by a commitment to the fields of medieval studies and animal studies, this edition provides an accessible introduction to the literary history of the Physiologus and the politics of animal representation. It asks the vital question: how can we understand humanity’s relationships with non-human animals and the environment today without understanding those relationships’ history?

Language: English/Old and Middle English
ISBN: 978-1-55481-518-0


William Caxton

The booke of Raynarde the Foxe (New York: Da Capo Press, 1969) [Book]

A facsimile of a 1550 edition of Hystorie van Reynaert die Vos, translated from the Dutch by William Caxton. Original title page reads: Here beginneth the booke of Raynarde the Foxe, conteining diuers goodlye historyes and parables, with other dyuers pointes necessarye tur al men to be marked ... Imprinted in London in Saint Martens by Thomas Gaultier, 1550.

Language: English
LC: PQ1508E5R4


William Caxton, Norman Francis Blake, ed.

The History of Reynard the Fox translated from the Dutch Original (London: The Early English Text Society / Oxford University Press, 1970; Series: Number 263) [Book]

Because of its humorous animal portraits and satirical probing of medieval society, Reynard the Fox has remained William Caxton's most poplar translation. Although modernizations have been numerous, this is the first fully annotated edition of Caxton's original text. ... Reynard the Fox is unique among Caxton's translations in being made from a Dutch printed book and is therefore of the greatest importance in assessing the influence of Dutch on fifteenth-century English and in illuminating the literary relations between England and Burgundy in the late Middle Ages. These and similar problems are discussed by Mr. Blake in the introduction." - [Cover copy]

Language: English
ISBN: 978-0-19-722267-6


William Caxton

The History of Reynard the Fox (George Routledge and Sons London, 1899; Series: Early Prose Romances)

This is a version of the stories of Reynard the Fox translated to English by William Caxton in the late 15th century. Caxton printed his translation himself on his own printing press, one of the first in England. In editing this edition in 1889, Morley modernized the spelling of words still in common use in his day, but did not attempt to modernize the style of the text.

Language: English


William Caxton, Oliver H. Prior, ed.

Caxton's Mirrour of the World (England: Kega Paul, Trech, Trubner & Co. / Oxford University Press, 1913; Series: The Early English Text Society)

A transcription of Mirrour of the World, an early English translation by William Caxton from the French L'Image du monde by Gossuin de Metz, with an with introduction and notes by O.H. Prior. Caxton's translation was based on British Library, Royal MS 19 A IX.

Caxton's Mirrour has a double claim to the notice of all book-lovers and students of mediaeval literature: it is the first work printed in England with illustrations, and one of the earliest encyclopaedias in the English language. As Caxton himself tells us in his introduction, the Mirrour was translated in 1480 from the French... - [Prior]

A facsimile of the 1481 edition of Caxton's translation is available.

Language: English


Luciana Borghi Cedrini

Appunti per la lettura di un bestiario medievale: il Bestiario valdese (Torino: G. Giappichelli, 1976; Series: Corsi universitari) [Book]

Includes text in the dialect of the Valley of Aosta (Vaudois) and Italian.

2 v., 144 p., bibliography.

Language: Italian
LCCN: 76478931; LC: PQ4265.B3473B6; OCLC: 2598766


Mariaserena Cella

Le fonti letterarie della simbologia medievale: i bestiari (in Piero Sanpaolesi, ed., Il Romanico. Atti del Seminario di studi. Villa Monastero di Varenna 8-16 September 1973, Milano: Istituto per la Storia dell'Arte Lombarda, 1976, page 181-190) [Book article]

Language: Italian


Giorgio Celli

Le proprietà degli animali; Bestiario moralizzato di Gubbio; Libellus de natura animalium (Italy: Costa & Nolan, 1983; Series: Testi Della Cultura Italiana 5) [Book]

Texts in Italian and Latin, with introductory material in Italian. Contents: Bestiario moralizzato di Bosone da Gubbio (d. ca. 1349), a cura di Annamaria Carrega; Libellus de natura animalium, a cura di Paola Navone.

521 p., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Italian
ISBN: 88-7648-011-0; LCCN: 85147951; LC: PA8275.B4I81983


Marta Cendon Fernandez

El pecado en la capilla de San Andres de la catedral de Tui (Quintana, 1, 2002, page 197-209) [Journal article]

A study of the representation of sin in the chapel of St Andres in the cathedral of Tui. The sculptures constitute a rich bestiary mostly in the form of serpents and dragons, symbols of of redemption the struggle against sin.

Language: Spanish
ISSN: 1579-7414


Sara Centili

La tradition manuscrite de l’Image du monde (Ecole nationale des Chartes, 2005)

The 13th century was defined by Jacques Le Goff as the “century of encyclopaedism”. It was indeed a period of incredible growth for Latin encyclopedias, but also saw at the same time the birth of vulgar encyclopedism. The foundation of the new genre, destined to spread during the second half of the century, is linked to the publication of the Image of the world , a text which enjoyed immense success in the Middle Ages and which circulated in several editorial offices. The original intention of the author [Gossuin de Metz] of l’Image du monde was to develop an instructional program that could adapt traditional clerical knowledge to a new, secular, unschooled audience. To understand the text, it is therefore fundamental to understand the relationship it maintained with its readers. - [Introduction]

Language: French


Massimo Centini

Animali, uomini, leggende: il bestiario del mito (Milan: Xenia, 1990) [Book]

240 pp., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Italian
LCCN: 91-117874; LC: GR820.C461990; OCLC: 31754862


M. G. Challis

Life in Medieval England as Portrayed on Church Misericords and Bench Ends (Oxfordshire: Teamband Ltd., 1998) [Book]

"Written to interest those who would like to place the carvings in their contemporary context rather than to provide an exhaustive catalogue". Largely focusing on examples in East Anglia and the West Country, Challis explores the various genres of misericord subjects represented, including depictions of events from the Bible, early disciples, beasts and monsters, scenes from everyday life and merry-making. Not a comprehensive study but one which reflects the time spent by the author visiting and recording these carvings.

67 p., many black & white illustrations.

Language: English
ISBN: 1-898187-01-0


Heather Changeri

WhiteRose's Garden (WhiteRose (Heather Changeri), 1997-) [Web page]

A web site on "comparative mythology", with sections on water creatures, dragons, unicorns, and other mythical beasts.

Language: English


Louis Charbonneau-Lassay

Le Bestiaire du Christ (France: Desclée, De Brower & Cie., 1940) [Book]

"Just before the outbreak of the Second World War in Europe, a little-known Roman Catholic scholar published a compendium of animal symbolism that ranks with the greatest of the classical and medieval bestiaries. Louis Charbonneau-Lassay's Le Bestiaire du Christ (The Bestiary of Christ) was a tour de force that brought together the findings of a lifetime of scholarship in religious symbols gleaned from sources as diverse as ancient Egypt, classical Greece and Rome, early and medieval Christianity, the Kabbalah, Gnosticism, and various spiritual schools of the Near and Far East. ... By bringing together various schools of esoteric wisdom with Catholic thought and the folk legends of the French countryside around Loudun, where he lived and died, Charbonneau-Lassay created a stirring and lively account of the rich - and often contradictory - metaphorical meanings of real and imaginary animals." - publisher, English edition, 1991

Originally published in France in 1940, in an edition of 500 copies, almost all of which were destroyed during the war. An edition of 2000 copies was published in Milan, based on the few surviving copies of the original. An English edition was translated and abriged by D. M. Dooling in 1991.

Language: French


The Bestiary of Christ (New York: Parabola Books, 1991) [Book]

"Just before the outbreak of the Second World War in Europe, a little-known Roman Catholic scholar published a compendium of animal symbolism that ranks with the greatest of the classical and medieval bestiaries. Louis Charbonneau-Lassay's Le Bestiaire du Christ (The Bestiary of Christ) was a tour de force that brought together the findings of a lifetime of scholarship in religious symbols gleaned from sources as diverse as ancient Egypt, classical Greece and Rome, early and medieval Christianity, the Kabbalah, Gnosticism, and various spiritual schools of the Near and Far East. ... By bringing together various schools of esoteric wisdom with Catholic thought and the folk legends of the French countryside around Loudun, where he lived and died, Charbonneau-Lassay created a stirring and lively account of the rich - and often contradictory - metaphorical meanings of real and imaginary animals." - publisher

Originally published in France (as Le Bestiaire du Christ) in 1940, in an edition of 500 copies, almost all of which were destroyed during the war. An edition of 2000 copies was published in Milan, based on the few surviving copies of the original. This English edition was translated and abriged by D. M. Dooling.

467 p., many black & white (woodcut) illustrations, bibliography

Language: English
ISBN: 0-930407-18-0; LCCN: 91040422; LC: BV168.A5C48131992; DDC: 24620


Christ the Hunter & the Hunted. A dual symbol from The Bestiary of Christ (Parabola, 16:2 (May), 1991, page 23-25) [Journal article]

Language: English
ISSN: 0362-1596; OCLC: 2210234


Elisabeth Charbonnier

Un Episode Original: La Mort du Loup dans le Livre VII de l'Ysengrimus (in Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed., Épopée Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Société Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 133-139) [Book article]

"Dans le Roman de Renart, le groupil frole la mort a plusiers reprises, mais a las derniere minute, miraculeusement, il est toujours epargne. C'est ainsi que la branche I nous le montre condamne a mort par le roi et la cour. Pourtant, un dernier subterfuge le sauve: il declare vouloir expier ses crimes par un pelerinage, si bien que Noble lui pardonne et qu'il peut s'enfuir. La branche XVII, elle aussi, pretend apporter au Roman une conclusion definitive: Renart meurt et l'on procede a ses funerailles. Mais au moment ou l'on met le groupil en terre, il bondit hors de la fosse et s'enfuit en emportant Chanteclerc qui tenait l'encesoir. Le mame theme sera repris dans une branche tardive, la branche XXIII, ou une fois de plus Renart echappe a la sentence prononcee contre lui. Bref, Renart est immortel. Le heros de l'epopee animale, symbole autant que personnage, ne peut mourir." - Charbonnier

Language: French


Jarl Charpentier

Poison-Detecting Birds (Bulletin of the School of Oriental Studies, University of London, 5:2, 1929, page 233-242) [Journal article]

Notes on poison-detecting birds, primarily from Eastern (Arabic, Indian) texts, but with some reference to Western bestiary texts.

Language: English


Marion Charpier

Le dragon me´die´val. "Physiologus", encyclope´dies et bestiaires enlumine´s (VIIIe-XVe s.) : Texte et Image (École doctorale de l’EHESS, 2020)

The medieval dragon. “Physiologus”, illuminated encyclopedias and bestiaries (8th-15th centuries): Text and Image. Doctoral thesis in History and civilizations

The ubiquitous of the dragon in the geographical area of the Medieval West makes it a fundamentally complex figure. Faced with an unfathomable production, as immense as the dragon itself, the Latin bestiaries offer a corpus which, thanks to the text-image relationship, allows us to analyse its symbolism and iconography. The production of the bestiaries is a continuation of the Greek Physiologus (2nd/4th century) and its Latin translations, and predates the encyclopaedic revival of the 13th century. It will therefore be important for us to understand the formation and processes underlying the symbolic evolution and iconography of the dragon, to identify the different stages that mark its history and contributed to molding its image in medieval times. To do this, it is necessary to identify the different symbolic components of the biblical dragon, at the very origin of the medieval monster, through the Old Testament, the Revelation and Patristic. This analysis aims to identify the complex and intertwined networks that govern the symbolism of the dragon in the Physiologus and its Latin translations. The study of the vernacular translations of the Latin versions of the Physiologus allows us to highlight the permanence and mutations of the dragon which began during the 12th century. The Latin bestiaries allow us to understand the links that unite and distinguish the dragon from the various snakes. The 13th century encyclopaedias, by compiling ancient knowledge and medieval traditions, redefine the place of the dragon in Creation and its symbolism. The iconographic analysis of the bestiaries allows us to determine the criteria inherent to the physiognomy of the dragon, its singularity in relation to other snakes and to understand how its depiction participates in the exaltation of its diabolical nature. - [Abstract]

Language: French


Genèse, symbolique et iconographie du basilic au Moyen Âge. Exemple des bestiaires latins enluminés (xiie-xve siècle) (Institut de recherche et d’histoire des textes, 2022; Series: Magikon zoon: Animal et magie dans l’Antiquité et au Moyen Âge)

A small snake in Antiquity, a hybrid animal in the Middle Ages or a giant monster with a murderous gaze in contemporary fantasy, the basilisk continues to reinvent itself. These mutations bear witness to the evolutions and recreations of the visual and symbolic imagination which have marked its history throughout the centuries. Faced with the protean nature and unstable iconography of the basil, Latin bestiaries offer a corpus that allows us to understand its symbolism and iconography. Bestiaries enjoyed great success during the 12th, 13th and 14th centuries, in the British Isles and on the European continent. This literary genre is heir to ancient zoology and the exegetical tradition of paleo-Christian writings, thus offering an original theological discourse rich in meaning. It will therefore be important for us to understand the formation and processes that underlie the symbolic evolution and iconography of the basil, to identify the different stages that mark its history and contributed to forging its image in the medieval period. To do this, it is necessary to identify the multiple symbolic components of the basil, at the very origin of the medieval monster, through ancient pagan literature, the Old Testament corpus and patristics. This analysis aims to identify the complex and tangled networks which govern the symbolism of the basil in the writings of the High Middle Ages in order to highlight the permanences and mutations which began during the twelfth century, in particular through the different families of Latin bestiaries. Finally, the iconographic analysis of the manuscripts will make it possible to determine the criteria inherent to the physiognomy of the basil and to define how its presentation contributes to the exaltation of its diabolical nature. - [Author]

978-2-493209-07-8; DOI: 10.4000/books.irht.802


John Cherry, ed.

Mythical Beasts (London: British Museum Press/Pomegranite Artbooks, 1995) [Book]

This text for the general reader explores the history and significance of 150 mythical beasts from around the world. This book takes four of the most significant - the dragon, the unicorn, the griffin and the sphinx - and shows how, through changing cultures from antiquity to the present, they have provided inspiration for writers and artists. Half-human creatures are also explored. The book draws on a wide variety of sources to illuminate the roles that mythical beasts have played in many different cultures, showing how they have retained their appeal through the ages.

191 pp., color and black & white illustrations throughout, glossary of beast names, bibliography, index. Introduction by John Cherry.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-87654-606-8


Unicorns (in John Cherry, ed., Mythical Beasts, London: British Museum Press/Pomegranite Artbooks, 1995, page 44-71) [Book article]

A discussion of the unicorn with refrerence to classical literature, Christianity, heraldry, medieval secular literature, chastity and medicine, from antiquity to modern times. Illustrated in color and black & white.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-87654-606-8


John Chrysostom

De naturis bestiarum by Johannes Chrysostomus: an XI Century MS. in the Monastery of Gottweih (19--?) [Book]

Facsimile reproduction of the manuscript leaves without commentary. The manuscript is now in the Pierpont Morgan Library under the shelfmark M.832.

20 p. of facsimiles.

Language: Latin


Tatiana Chumakova

Animal Symbolism in Ancient Russian Culture (Filozofski fakultet u Rijeci, 2009; Series: IKON volume 2)

Animal Symbolism played an important role in the Ancient Russian culture. Animal Symbols can be divided into three groups. At the first, animal symbols in the Ancient Russian literature (Hexameron, Physiolog and others). For the most part, these were the symbols of Christian virtues and vices. At the second, animal symbols in the churches. For the most part they were symbols of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit and the apostles, as well as characters Last Judgment (for example fresco of Church of our Saviour on Nereditsa) and symbols. Thirdly, they were symbolic images of animals on jewellery ornaments and embroiderys. Like many symbols used by Christians, animal symbols were adopted and adapted out of a pre-Christian usage.

1846-8551; DOI: 10.1484/J.IKON.3.56


Inju Chung

The Physiologus and 'The Whale' (Medieval English Studies (Korea), 6, 1998, page 21-57) [Journal article]

Includes a critical edition of the text of 'The Whale', one of the three narratives in the Old English Physiologus in the Exeter Book. Summaries in English and Korean.

Language: English


Albo Cicade

Douze notices du physiologue en transmission arabe : Bestiaire spirituel pour les chrétiens (Academia, 2021)

The Arabic version [of the Physiologus] has come down to us through two significantly different recensions... In his imposing collection in Latin, the "Physiologus leidenensis", comprising 81 entries drawn from various sources, Land indicates 37 notices as coming from an Arabic recension... To the same recensions belong the 19 notices found in the manuscript Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Arabe 258 attributed by the superscription to Saint Gregory of Nazianzus. ... However, it is to another recension that the twelve notices presented here belong ... in the translation given by Gérard Troupeau in 1975. It will be noted that, unlike the notices in the Greek collection which generally bear "The Physiologus said", no notice transmitted by this manuscript specifically mentions an author. - [Author]

Includes the French translation of the twelve Arabic Physiologus chapters from Troupeau, Une version arabe du Physiologus.

Language: French


Le Physiologue ou Bestiaire spirituel à l'usage des chrétiens (Academia, 2017)

Many translations of the Physiologus have therefore been made, but it must be admitted that few of us read 13th century "French" fluently. Also, failing to find a French translation carried out according to the rules of the art which is at the same time in the Public Domain, I fell back on a translation which was carried out in the 19th century – as a curiosity for an individual – on an Armenian text and was not intended to be published. Luckily, Father Cahier (SJ), who had a long-standing interest in the symbols that adorn churches – and for that reason had spotted what they must in the Physiologus – chose to insert this translation in one of his numerous studies in 1855. I dug it up and, at the cost of some modernizations of the language, I present yhe Physiologus according to the Armenian transmission, well aware that the text proposed below would certainly not give complete satisfaction to the researcher or the scholar. However, it will be enough for a first discovery, a first contact. This “Physiologus according to Armenian transmission” being full of biblical quotations, I have endeavored to identify them, and have reported them as best I can. It goes without saying that the Physiologus cites Holy Scripture from the Greek version of the Septuagint, like all the authors of his time. This posterity is reflected in certain decorative elements of churches, In addition, and to complement it, I have added - under the title "Le physiologue normand" - the series of summaries that Professor Hippeau gave, in 1852, of the long rhymed notices in Romance languages of Guillaume's "Bestiaire divin", Norman priest. To make it less difficult to use, I have added a comparative table between these two texts. - [Author]

Language: French


Maria Pia Ciccarese

Animali simbolici: alle origini del bestiario cristiano (Bologna: EDB, 2002; Series: Biblioteca patristica 39) [Book]

Christian symbology of animals; animals in the Bible. Includes Greek and Latin texts with facing Italian translation.

508 p., bibliography, indexes.

Language: Italian
ISBN: 88-10-42048-9; LCCN: 2003422759; OCLC: 51106036


Marcello Ciccuto

Le meraviglie d'Oriente nelle enciclopedie illustrate del Medioevo (in Michelangelo Picone, ed., L'enciclopedismo medievale: Atti del convegno "L'enciclopedismo medievale", San Gimignano, 1992, Ravenna: Longo, 1994, page 79-116) [Book article]

Language: Italian
ISBN: 88-8063-003-2


René Cintré

Bestiaire médiéval des animaux familiers (Rennes: Ouest-France, 2013)

A study of the symbolic animal of the Middle Ages. The author examines the representations moral, metaphorical and imaginary attached to animals domestic or wild : pig, dog, cat, wolf, bear, rat, birds of prey, insects, etc

Language: French


Mattia Cipriani

Un aspect de l’encyclopédisme de Thomas de Cantimpré. La section De lapidibus pretiosis du Liber de natura rerum (Médiévales, 2017; Series: Volume 72)

Even though all thirteenth century encyclopaedists used a common corpus of sources, each of them had a precise and personal way to choose, “tailorize” and arrange the contents taken from these auctoritates. These peculiar and custom modi scribendi reflect accurately the different formae mentis and purposes behind the encyclopaedic texts, while also permitting the compiler (who collects authoritative materials of others) to become an author (who in turn becomes authoritative). Through the analysis of the structure, contents and sources of De lapidibus pretiosis—the fourteenth book of the widespread encyclopedia Liber the natura rerum (approximately 1242/1247-1260)—, this essay will show the exclusive « encyclopaedic style » and goals of its author, the Flemish Dominican friar Thomas of Cantimpré (1201-1270/1271). - [Abstract]

Language: French
DOI: 10.4000/medievales.8121


On the borders of humanity. Amazons, wild men, giants and wolf-girls in Thomas of Cantimpré’s Liber de natura rerum (Reinardus: Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 2020; Series: Volume 32, Issue 1)

The Liber de natura rerum is a thirteenth-century encyclopedia that reflects the naturalistic interests of its author, the Dominican friar Thomas of Cantimpré (ca.1200/ 01–ca.1270/ 72). Despite his realistic focus, Thomas was a man of his time and he introduced elements in his work that may seem bizarre to a modern reader. The purpose of this article is twofold. Firstly, it analyses how the Friar treats these different elements, whether they were widespread in thirteenth-century culture (e.g. Amazons, wild men, mermaids, etc.) or discussed for the first time by the Thomas himself (e.g. giants of Vienna, wolf-girl of Burgundy, etc.). Secondly, the paper highlights some very interesting and new aspects of Thomas’s work that shed light on his way of thinking and on his encyclopedia. - [Abstract]

Language: English
DOI: 10.1075/rein.00037.cip


"In dorso colorem habet inter viridem et ceruleum…": Liber rerum e osservazione zoologica diretta nell’enciclopedia di Tommaso di Cantimpré (Reinardus: Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 2017; Series: Volume 29)

Like other contemporary encyclopaedists of his time, Thomas of Cantimpré (1200 ca.–1270/72) used a vast number of sources in his Liber de natura rerum (completed between 1241 and 1260 ca.), which he meticulously selected to copy, cut and ‘paste’ in order to create a solid, well-argued, coherent and ‘Dominican’ discourse on nature. Among these auctoritates, the friar also uses a mysterious and anonymous libellum, which he qualifies as “liber rerum,” in his work. Consequently, the paper explains this auctoritas through a careful consideration of all the objective aspects that can be acquired from the Liber de natura rerum. Secondly, the work shows how the anonymous source was Thomas’ privileged vehicle through which to introduce in his encyclopaedia ‘alternative’ information borrowed from non-canonical sources (direct observations, personal experiences, etc.). The analysis therefore identifies the particular textual typology of the anonymous libellum, while also demonstrating how the friar of Cantimpré was a curious and actual auctor on nature, observing everyday reality directly and thereby distinguishing himself from his contemporary compilatores. - [Abstract]

Language: Italian


Il Physiologus nel Liber de natura rerum di Tommaso di Cantimpré (RursuSpicae, 2019; Series: Volume 2)

The Physiologus in Thomas of Cantimpré's Liber de Natura Rerum

In the Prologus to his Liber de natura rerum (1225 ca.-1260 ca.), the Dominican Thomas of Cantimpré lists the 15 sources he used most during the writing of the encyclopedia. In the penultimate place on this list, he puts the Physiologus and describes it as an auctoritas “quite succinct and useful on several occasions”. Starting from this indication, the present article investigates therefore two aspects of this relationship. First, how and how much the Alexandrian treatise is actually used in the Dominican encyclopedia. Second, what version of this didactic work was on Thomas’ desk during the drafting of the Liber. - [Abstract]

Language: Italian


La place de Thomas de Cantimpré dans l’encyclopédisme médiéval : les sources du Liber de natura rerum) (Paris:, 2014; Series: Doctoral thesis in History of science, École pratique des hautes étude)

The place of Thomas of Cantimpré in the medieval encyclopedism : the sources of the Liber de natura rerum

The Liber de Natura Rerum is a medieval encyclopedia born from the need of a text capable of explaining nature and the Bible, viz. The Will of the Creator. The Dominican Thomas de Cantimpré (1201-1270/71) compiled the work with the view of helping preachers and Christian educators strengthen the faith of believers: a faith which must be without error. In order to understand this text and its compiler, the present work has been divided into two parts: 1) a new philological reconstruction of the Liber together with a statement of all the identifiable sources used by the Flemish Dominican; 2) a commentary of the new Liber analysing and explaining the culture of Thomas. By observing the explicit and implicit sources and the relationship between Thomas’ work and the encyclopedism of the Middle Ages, the aims of de Cantimpré can be reconstructed. The analysis of the Liber de Natura Rerum hence is not limited to the philological level, but portrays the text in hermeneutic terms; via the analysis of the sources, Thomas de Cantimpré and his work can be placed in the complex reality of medieval encyclopedism - [Abstract]

Language: French


Mattia Cipriani, ed., Nicola Polloni, ed.

Fragmented Nature: Medieval Latinate Reasoning on the Natural World and Its Order (Routledge, 2022)

The Latin Middle Ages were characterised by a vast array of different representations of nature. These conceptualisations of the natural world were developed according to the specific requirements of many different disciplines, with the consequent result of producing a fragmentation of images of nature. Despite this plurality, two main tendencies emerged. On the one hand, the natural world was seen as a reflection of God’s perfection, teleologically ordered and structurally harmonious. On the other, it was also considered as a degraded version of the spiritual realm – a world of impeccable ideas, separate substances, and celestial movers. This book focuses on this tension between order and randomness, and idealisation and reality of nature in the Middle Ages. It provides a cutting-edge profile of the doctrinal and semantic richness of the medieval idea of nature, and also illustrates the structural interconnection among learned and scientific disciplines in the medieval period, stressing the fundamental bond linking together science and philosophy, on the one hand, and philosophy and theology, on the other. - [Publisher]


  1. Zoological Inconsistency and Confusion in the Physiologus latinus - Emmanuelle Kuhry
  2. Gerald of Wales and Saint Brigid’s Falcon: The Chaste Beast in Medieval and Early Modern Irish Natural History - Bernd Roling
  3. Medieval Universes in Disorder: Primeval Chaos and Its Authoritative Coordinates - Nicola Polloni
  4. Animals under an Encyclopedic Lens: Zoological Misinterpretation in Thomas of Cantimpré's Liber de Natura Rerum - Mattia Cipriani
  5. Learning from Bees, Wasps, and Ants: Communal Norms, Social Practices, and Contingencies of Nature in Medieval Insect Allegories - Julia Burkhardt
  6. Defining and Picturing Elements and Humours in Medieval Medicine: Text and Images in Bartholomew the Englishman’s De Proprietatibus Rerum - Grégory Clesse
  7. Why Do Animals Have Parts? Organs and Organisation in Thirteenth- and Fourteenth-century Latin Commentaries on Aristotle's De animalibus - Dominic Dold
  8. La reproduction imparfaite: les "gusanes" et l’état larvaire des insectes chez Albert le Grand - Isabelle Draelants
  9. Elixir as Means of Contrasting with Nature in Albert the Great’s Alchemy - Athanasios Rinotas
  10. From Prime Matter to Chaos in Ramon Llull - Carla Compagno

Language: English
ISBN: 978-1-00-309479-1; DOI: 10.4324/9781003094791


Colin Clair

Unnatural History: An Illustrated Bestiary (New York: Abelard-Schumann, 1967)

Aside from legendary beasts also has legends & lore of actual animals.

"In Unnatural History, and illustrated modern bestiary, Colin Clair has unearthed the incredible stories of a whole galaxy of extraordinary beasts. ...nearly every fabulous beast of myth and legend has been included here for the benefit of the contemporary reader, who, in his prudent circumspection, may well wonder in just what jungles the imaginations of his ancestors may have wandered." - publisher

The illustrations are mostly 16th and 17th century woodcuts (Gesner, Topsell, etc.) and line drawings.

256 pp., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: English
LCCN: 66025012; LC: GR825.C481967; DDC: 398.4/69; OCLC: 1266069


Anne Clark

Beasts and Bawdy (New York: Taplinger Publishing Company, 1975) [Book]

"...the author describes the real and fabulous beasts thus depicted, comments on their beastly behavior, and explores the curious sex lives our ancestors attributed to them." - publisher

A general introduction to (mostly) medieval animal lore. The lack of references makes it difficult to use for serious study, or to follow up on sometimes dubious statements. Small bibliography, index. 16 pages of black & white illustrations.

Contents: Sources of Animal Lore; Physiologus and the Bestiaries; Fabulous Beasts; Men as Beasts and Beasts as Men; Sex and Bawdy; Beastly Behaviour; Animal Medicines, Charms and Aphrodisiacs.

159 pages, 24 black & white photographic illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8008-0691-3; LCCN: 75000807; LC: QL791.C5651975; DDC: 398/.369


James G. Clark, Frank T. Coulson, Kathryn L. McKinley

Ovid in the Middle Ages (Cambridge University Press, 2011)

Ovid is perhaps the most important surviving Latin poet and his work has influenced writers throughout the world. This volume presents a groundbreaking series of essays on his reception across the Middle Ages. The collection includes contributions from distinguished Ovidians as well as leading specialists in medieval Latin and vernacular literature, clerical and extra-clerical culture and medieval art, and addresses questions of manuscript and textual transmission, translation, adaptation and imitation. It also explores the intersecting cultural contexts of the schools (monastic and secular), courts and literate lay households. It elaborates the scale and scope of the enthusiasm for Ovid in medieval Europe, following readers of the canon from the Carolingian monasteries to the early schools of the Île de France and on into clerical and curial milieux in Italy, Spain, the British Isles and even the Byzantine Empire. - [Publisher]

Language: English
ISBN: 978-1-107-00205-0


Kenneth Clark

Animals and Men (London: Thames & Hudson, 1977) [Book]

Mostly plates with captions. Includes some information on the Physiologus and bestiaries, as well as symbolic and sacred animals.

240 p. index.

Language: English
LC: N7660.C6


Willene B. Clark

The Aviary-Bestiary at the Houghton Library, Harvard (in Meradith T. McMunn, ed., Beasts and Birds of the Middle Ages. The Bestiary and its Legacy, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1989, page 26-52) [Book article]

Discussion on Houghton Library, MS Typ 101 containing an Aviary (De columbia deargentata, Libellus ad Rainerum conversum...) by Hugh of Fouilloy, prior of Saint-Laurent-d'Heilly, and Bestiary (Dicta Chrysostomi version)

Also a comparison of the Houghton Library manuscript with a related manuscript, National Library of Russia, Lat. Q.v.III. 1.

Language: English


Four Latin Bestiaries and De bestiis et aliis rebus (Louvain-la-Neuve: Catholic University of Louvain, 2005; Series: Bestiaires medievaux. Nouvelles perspectives sur les manuscrits et les traditions textuelles, communications presentees au xve Colloque de la Societe Internationale Renardienne (Louvain-la-Neuve, 19-2)

Notes on five manuscripts (Bibliothèque Mazarine, Ms 742, Bibliothèque Nationale de France, lat. 11207, Bibliothèque Nationale de France, lat. 14297, Bibliothèque Nationale de France, lat. 14429, Wormsley Library, MS BM 3747).

Language: English


The Illustrated Medieval Aviary and the Lay Brotherhood (Gesta, 21:1, 1982, page 63-74) [Journal article]

"Hugh of Fouilloy's De avibus, written sometime after 1152, is a teaching text for monastic lay-brothers, using birds as the subjects of moral allegory. Copies were usually illustrated,and a standard program of miniatures can be followed, all or in part, through some forty-six of the seventy-eight extant manuscripts, produced mainly in the late twelfth and thirteenth centuries. In England, the text was often incorporated directly into the Bestiary, with or without the typical Aviary illustrations. The Aviary's formal parallels to the Bestiary, and its similar patronage and currency, suggest that the Bestiary, too, may have been used as a teaching text for lay-brothers." - Clark, abstract

Includes black & white manuscript images.

Language: English


A Medieval Book of Beasts: The Second-family Bestiary : Commentary, Art, Text and Translation (Suffolk, Rochester: Boydell Press, 2006)

The bestiary - a book of animals, both real and mythical - is one of the most interesting and appealing medieval artefacts. The "Second-family" bestiary is the most important and frequently produced version (some 49 known manuscripts exist). Of English origin and predominantly English production, it boasts a spiritual text "modernized" to meet the needs of its time, and features exceptional illustrations. This study addresses the work's purpose and audience, challenging previous assumptions with direct evidence in the manuscripts themselves, linking their use to teachers at the elementary-school level, and exploring the art, the text, and the cultural context for the bestiary. It includes a critical edition and new English translation, and a catalogue raisonné of the manuscripts. Fully illustrated. - [Publisher]

Language: English
ISBN: 978-0-85115-682-8; OCLC: 959160341


Medieval Book of Birds: Hugh of Fouilloy's Aviarium (Binghampton, NY: Center for Medieval and Early Renaissance Studies, 1992; Series: Medieval & Renaissance Texts & Studies) [Book]

"Medieval scribes gave a variety of titles to the Book of Birds... Here I will refer to it as the Aviary, for in many respects it parallels prose versions of a familiar genre, the bestiary. ... In recent times the Aviary has been the subject of a number of studies, all dealing summarily or only in part with the text, the illustrations, and the manuscripts. ... While these studies have made valuable contributions to an understanding of the Aviary, no one has analyzed the complete text in detail, nor has anyone compared the text and illustrations of the many copies in order to group the manuscripts textually and pictorially, nor placed their illustrations in their proper stylistic context. ... Therefore, in addition to an art historical study of the manuscript tradition, I have provided a modern edition and an English translation of the Aviary... In the introduction I analyze the manuscript groups and discuss style in individual manuscripts in relation to their respective groups. I also provide a catalog of all the extant Aviary manuscripts known to me. ... My purpose in publishing this edition and translation is to provide easy access to Hugh's appealing treatise on birds. I have not sought to establish an authorial text, but to present a text which seems to reflect the original at a reasonably close range. ... The edition is based upon the Heiligenkreuz Aviary (Heiligenkreuz Abbey MS. 226), an early copy, complete in text and illustrations." - Clark, preface

341 pp. of text, 49 pp. of black & white illustrations, catalogue of illuminated Aviary manuscripts, bibliography, general index, index of manuscripts cited.

[See also van den Abeele, 2003]

Language: English
ISBN: 0-86698-091-1; LCCN: 90048430; LC: PA8275.B4H8131992; DDC: 878/.30720


Text and picture in the medieval aviary (Manuscripta, 24:1, 1980, 5) [Journal article]

Language: English


Zoology in the medieval Latin bestiary (in Man and nature in the Middle Ages, Sewanee, Tenn.: University of the South Press, 1995) [Book article]

Language: English
ISBN: 0-918769-37-X; LCCN: 82-50575; LC: CB351/BD581; OCLC: 35778979


Willene B. Clark, Meradith T. McMunn

Beasts and Birds of the Middle Ages: The Bestiary and its Legacy (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1989) [Book]

"The essays in Beasts and Birds of the Middle Ages, all by internationally known scholars, demonstate the scope and variety of bestiary studies and the ways in which the bestiary can be addressed. The contributers write about the tradition of one of the bestiary's birds, Parisian production of the manuscripts, bestiary animals in a liturgical book, theological as well as secular interpretations of beasts, bestiary creatures in literature, and new perspectives on the bestiary in other genres." - Introduction

In an appendix, the authors provide a list of western Latin and French bestiary manuscripts, extending the bestiary family classification system begun by James (1928) and McCulloch (1962).

Includes articles by: Beryl Rowland, Willene B. Clark, Xenia Muratova, Guy R. Mermier, Wendy Pfeffer, Jeanette Beer, Lilian M. C. Randall, Meradith T. McMunn, Michael J. Curley, Mary Coker Joslin, John B. Friedman.

224 p., black & white illustrations, extensive bibliography (since 1962), index, list of bestiary manuscripts, contributer biographies.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8122-3091-4; LCCN: 894915; LC: PA8275.B4Z551989; DDC: 809.933620


Willene B. Clark

Four latin bestiaries and De bestiis et aliis rebus (in Baudouin Van den Abeele, ed., Bestiaires médiévaux. Nouvelles perspectives sur les manuscrits et les traditions textuelles, Louvain-la-Neuve: Institut d’études médiévales, 2005, page 49-69) [Book article]

Language: English


Claudian, Maurice Plantnauer, trand

Claudian (Cambridge, MA: Loeb Classical Library, 1922)

Volume II of this work contains translations of The Rape of Proserpine, The Gothic War, On Stilicho's Consulship, Panegyric on the Sixth Consulship of Honorius, various shorter poems (including Gigantomachia and Phoenix), as well as the source Latin texts, Platnaeuer's introduction and footnotes and an index of proper names.

Language: English


Laura Cleaver

Taming the Beast: Images of Trained Bears in Twelfth-Century English Manuscripts (IKON: Journal of Iconographic Studies, 2009; Series: Volume 2)

Amongst the surviving representations of bears from the twelfth century are two images from southern England in which the creature is being taught to speak. These depictions resonate with the contemporary use of animal fables to teach children both Latin and correct behaviour. The bears serve as parallels for human beings and appear to achieve impossible skills. In the Middle Ages bears were famed for being both fierce and stupid. However, captive bears, which were frequently represented in twelfth-century images, could also provide entertainment. This study considers images of bears being taught to speak in the context of written and visual accounts of education. It argues that these images of bears echoed current debates about the nature of children. According to some writers, young pupils were like wild animals who needed to be reformed through the process of learning Latin in the schoolroom. Whilst such images of bears seemingly achieving the impossible were entertaining, they could thus also be didactic. - [Abstract]

Language: English
ISSN: 1846--855; DOI: =10.1484/J.IKON.3.46


Laura Cleaver, Laura Morreale

The Image du monde Challenge, Team 1, Phase 1/2: BNF Français 14964 (From the Page / Stanford Libraries, 2020)

The Image du monde challenge is a project to transcribe several manuscript copies of l'image du monde by Gossuin de Metz. Team 1, phase 1 & 2 transcrbed the text from Bibliothèque Nationale de France, fr. 14964. The full transcription is available.

Language: English/French


Jean-Paul Clébert

Bestiaire Fabuleux (Paris: Éditions Albin Michel, 1971) [Book]

459 pp., illustrations.

Language: French
LCCN: 70-886449; LC: GR825.C483; DDC: 398.24/5; OCLC: 547543


Charles De Clercq

Hugues de Fouilloy, imagier de ses propres oeuvres? (Revue du Nord, 177 (January-March), 1963, page p. 31-42) [Journal article]

Language: French


Grégory Clesse

Un compilateur en eaux (in-)connues: Thomas de Cantimpré et la faune aquatique du nord-ouest de l'Europe (Anthropozoologica, 2018; Series: Volume 53, Number 1)

This paper studies how the Dominican compiler Thomas of Cantimpré deals with ichthyological information from his own country in his Latin encyclopedia called Liber de natura rerum (c. 1242-1247), and the posterity he will have in works directly influenced by him. The first part analyses the passages where Thomas of Cantimpré provides some geographical indications on marine wildlife, focusing on the few sections where Northwestern Europe and vernacular nomenclatures are mentioned. The compiler’s position is paradoxical. On the one hand, he is familiar with the wildlife of the region he himself comes from, but on the other hand the authorities he quotes originate mainly from the Mediterranean area and sometimes do not give precise information in this respect. The second part considers the reception of those chapters in the Dutch translation of Jacob van Maerlant and in the 15th century Hortus sanitatis, via Vincent of Beauvais' Speculum naturale. Within this scope, we pay special attention to the “silences”, i.e., the passages omitted in this chain of transmission. Indeed, these omissions also provide evidence on the epistemological approach of Thomas of Cantimpré in comparison with his followers, considering the spatial, temporal and linguistic conditions of the compilation. - [Abstract]

Language: French
DOI: 10.5252/anthropozoologica2018v53a7


Thomas de Cantimpré et l’Orient : les sources arabes dans les chapitres zoologiques du Liber de natura rerum (Reinardus. Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 2013; Series: Volume 25, Issue 1)

Encyclopedic works offer a rich textual corpus for the study of cultural relations between East and West. More particularly, the Liber de natura rerum of Thomas of Cantimpré gives an important place to the census and description of animal species. Therefore, its examination makes it possible to collect a series of objective data, quantitatively and qualitatively, on the circulation and integration of Arab elements within the knowledge widespread in the 13th century in the West. An initial survey of the Arabic sources used by the compiler makes it possible to account for a dynamic interaction between Eastern and Western knowledge. The East-West relationship can also be exercised in a more indirect way, as during the reception of Aristotle's De animalibus through the Arabic-Latin translation carried out by Michel Scot. However, by taking this intermediary into consideration, several zoonyms taken up by Thomas de Cantimpré whose sound was puzzling can be clarified and the organization of the census of animal species carried out by the compiler can be studied from a new angle. Finally, on the question of the identification of the Experimentator, cited by Thomas de Cantimpré, new elements of response are provided with regard to the language of composition, the dating and the editorial mode of this work. - [Abstract]

Language: French
DOI: 10.1075/rein.25.05cle


Grégory Clesse

Des textes sources au texte compilé : le portrait de l’autruche dans les compilations naturalistes des ordres mendiants au XIIIe siècle (RursuSpicae: Transmission des textes et savoirs de l’Antiquité à la fin du Moyen Âge, 2020; Series: 3 (La conversation des encyclopédistes))

From Sources to Compilations: Portraying the Ostrich in the 13th-Century Compilations about Nature of the Mendicant Orders

Most of the time, the study of encyclopaedic sources tends to start with the compilations to lead to the authorities which are quoted. This article, focusing on the ostrich, proposes the opposite approach. As a first step, we establish a typology of the zoological knowledge available in the 13th century on this animal. We do this, considering a wide range of sources in various disciplines: works of natural history in the Antiquity with Aristotle and Pliny, moral literature, encyclopedic syntheses, alphabetical series of properties, and medical treatises. The second step is to analyse the reception and assimilation of these contents in the main compendia of natural science produced by the mendicant orders in the middle of the thirteenth century, focusing on the Liber de natura rerum of Thomas of Cantimpré, the De proprietatibus rerum of Bartholomaeus Anglicus, the Speculum naturale of Vincent de Beauvais, and the De animalibus of Albert the Great. With this article we wish to contribute to the question of the criteria underlying the selection made by these authors, paying specific attention to the transmitted knowledge as well as to what is rejected or introduced in an original way. - [Abstract]

Language: French
2557-8839; DOI: 10.4000/rursuspicae.1486


Calum Cockburn

Let sleeping cranes lie (London: British Library, Medieval manuscripts blog, 2019; Series: 19 March 2019)

The RSPB has reported that the ccrane is coming back to Britain, with a record number of new birds reported in recent years. We have similarly found many cranes hidden in the British Library’s medieval bestiaries, manuscripts full of fantastic stories about all manner of birds and beasts. A bird with great wings and long thin legs, the crane’s Latin name — grus — was thought to derive from the hoarse cry of her voice. The Polonsky Foundation England and France Project has created an animation that tells the story of the life of the bird and her flock, based on an account in an illustrated bestiary (British Library, Harley MS 4751). - [Author]

Language: English


Whale of a time (London: British Library, Medieval manuscripts blog, 2019; Series: 02 May 2019)

The Polonsky Foundation England and France Project has created a new animation telling the story of the Whale, the terror of the seas, based on an account in an illustrated bestiary (British Library, Harley MS 4751). ... Illustrations of the whale in early medieval bestiaries vary greatly, but they often take the form of a type of enormous fish, with fins, a tail and a huge belly. According to one description in a manuscript made during the early 13th century (Harley MS 4751), the whale’s body is so large that unwary sailors mistake it for land and anchor their ships on its back. When they light fires, the creature feels the heat of the flames and dives beneath the waves, dragging the sailors to their deaths. -[Author]

Language: English


Singne Almestad Coe

The Sculpture Of Saint-Sauveur De Nevers (Berkeley, CA: University Of California, Berkeley, 1987) [Dissertation]

PhD dissertation at the University Of California, Berkeley.

"The city of Nevers saw a considerable flourishing of church building in the eleventh and twelfth centuries. Relatively few of these structures survive, however, and what does stand today displays very little of what was a substantial output of sculptural decoration in that period. The former Cluniac priory of Saint-Sauveur, destroyed in 1838, was a modest twelfth-century building which belonged to one of the smaller monastic establishments of the city, but from it survives the fullest document of sculpture from Romanesque Nevers. A study of the style of the sculpture of Saint-Sauveur, now housed in the Musee de la Porte du Croux in Nevers, reveals a homogeneous body of sculpture of high quality dating to the middle of the twelfth century. These capitals, corbels, and a tympanum and lintel were carved by an atelier composed of a master who had carved capitals of the tribune story of the narthex and perhaps the Romanesque west facade of the abbey church of Vezelay on the northern border of the Nivernais, as well as, perhaps, a stonecarver who had worked earlier in Nevers itself. The stamp of this atelier may also be seen in Nevers in corbel sculpture of the chapel of Saint-Michel of the Benedictine convent of Notre-Dame de Nevers. Analysis of the iconography of the Saint-Sauveur sculpture, which included a remarkable sculpted 'bestiary' on the nave capitals and a particularly pointed emphasis on the powers of the apostle Peter in sculpture from the crossing and transept portal, gives more specific indication of the background and intentions of the Cluniac patrons of the sculpted decorations of Saint-Sauveur. As well, it may pinpoint the historical moment of the conception of the sculpture to the years around 1152. The collection of fragments from Saint-Sauveur emerges as the creation of an atelier working in an old and rich Romanesque idiom but touched also by a newer aesthetic and by intellectual concerns which scholars commonly associate with early Gothic works. Indeed, the Saint-Sauveur sculpture was soon to be followed in Nevers itself by works closely related to the dramatic contemporary innovations in the sculpture of the Ile-de-France." - abstract

578 p.

Language: English
PQDD: AAT8813835


Luisa Cogliati Arano

Bestiari ed erbari dal manoscritto alla stampa (in Henri Zerner, ed., Le stampe e la diffusione delle immagini e degli stili, Bologna: CLUEB, 1983, page 17-22) [Book article]

Uses as models the illustrations of some herbals and bestiaries from the 13th century to the 16th century (Theriaca, MS arabe 2964, Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris; herbal, Cod. Pal. 586, Biblioteca Nazionale, Florence; MS it. 1108, Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris; Herbarium of Apuleius, incun. 794, Biblioteca Marciana, Venice; and herbal, Passau 1486, incun. 915, Biblioteca Marciana, Venice) to test the hypothesis that images played an important role in linking various cultures through the centuries.

Comite international d'histoire de l'art. Atti del XXIV Congresso internazionale di storia dell'arte, 8.

Language: Italian


Dal Fisiologo al Bestiario di Leonardo (in 1-2Rivista di storia della miniatura 1996-1997, 1997, page 239-248) [Book article]

Surveys European Medieval illuminated manuscripts (11th-15th cs.; various collections) of the Physiologus and other bestiaries (e.g., those of Sextus Placitus, Guillaume le Clerc, Richart de Fornival, etc.), and the representation of animals in Arab illuminations (13th c.) as precedents for the studies of animals by Pisanello and Leonardo da Vinci.

Language: Italian


Fonti figurative del ''Bestiario'' di Leonardo (Arte Lombarda Milano, 62, 1982, page 151-160) [Journal article]

The author discusses the possible sources (illustrated bestiaries of the 13-14th centuries) in studies of animals by Leonardo da Vinci. In addition to specific works that the artist could have consulted in the ducal library of Pavie, the tradition of the international Gothic style, with its Arab components, is described as the source of inspiration of Leonardo da Vinci.

Language: Italian


Daniel Cohen

A Modern Look at Monsters (New York: Dodd, Mead and Company, 1970) [Book]

Language: English


Esther Cohen

Law, Folklore and Animal Lore (Past and Present, 110 (February), 1986, page 6-37) [Journal article]

"Given the existent knowledge of past legal and institutional developments and of the evolving relationship between elite and popular cultural expressions, it is possible to attempt a long-term interpretation. One such practice, the criminal prosecution and execution of animals, may illustrate the interaction of various legal levels and cultural influences. These trials, documented in European legal history from the thirteenth to the eighteenth century, occupy an intermediate position between popular and elite legal culture. On the one hand, they were definitely not judicial folklore: the sentences were passed and executed in properly constituted courts of law by fully qualified magistrates, according to generally accepted laws. On the other hand, there is no question that they were an integral part of customary law and owed their continued existence partially to popular traditions and influences. ... Following the phenomenon through the warp and woof of legal history, from court-house to university and from customals to the gallows across centuries of changing perceptions of nature, law and justice, one might attempt an interpretation of continental European law as practised within its specific cultural context." - Cohen

Language: English


Carl Cohn

Geschichte des Einhorns (Berlin: 1896) [Book]

Language: German


Roger L. Cole

Beast Allegory in the Late Medieval Sermon in Strasbourg: The Example of John Geiler's Von den vier Lewengeschrei (1507) (Bestia: Yearbook of the Beast Fable Society, May; 3, 1991, page 115-124) [Journal article]

Language: English
ISSN: 1041-2212


E. Colledge

Renard the Fox and Other Mediaeval Netherlands Secular Literature (Leyden: Heinemann, 1967) [Book]

Language: English


Arthur H. Collins

Some Twelfth-Century Animal Carvings and their Sources in the Bestiaries (in Vol. 106. No. 472The Connoisseur, 1940, page 238-243) [Book article]

A brief article comparing animal images carved on British churches with similar images found in bestiary manuscripts.

Churches include: Alne, Yorkshire; Newton-in-Cleveland, Yorkshire, Dalmeny, Scotland; St Margaret's, York; Alton, Hampshire; Herefordshire; Faversham, Kent.

Manuscripts include: St John's College, Oxford, MS. 61; Westminster Chapter Library, MS. 22; British Library, Sloane MS. 3544; British Library, Harley MS. 4751; British Library, Harley MS. 3244.

17 black & white photographs.

Language: English


Symbolism of Animals and Birds Represented in English Church Architecture (New York: McBride, Nast & Company, 1913) [Book]

"No student of our ancient churches can fail to have noticed how frequently animals and other representations of natural history are to be found carved therein. The question will naturally occur: are these scultures, or paintinge, mere grotesque creations of the artist's fancy, or have they rather some meaning which patient investigation will discover for us? ... This link has now been found in the natural history books of the Middle Ages, which were in more common circulation than any other book, save, of course, the Bible. ... Such books are usually called Bestiaries. They are to be found in every great library... Few books have entered more than the Bestiaries into the common life of European nations. Hence we may understand that the sculptors who beautified our churches were not slow to make use of such familiar material." - Collins, chapter 1.

Includes 120 black & white photgraphs of sculpture and carvings (primarily stone) in churches througout England. All photographs are fully annotated as to location, date and subject.

Language: English


Cristina Coltelli

Bestiaire D'amours, Richard de Fournival - La redazione francoitaliana: Studio comparativo ed edizione dei testi (Edizioni Accademiche Italiane, 2014)

The present work aims to study the internal and external characteristics of the three Franco-Italian manuscripts of Richard de Fournival's Bestiaire d'Amours (two kept at the Florentine Libraries and one at the Pierpont Morgan Library in New York [Morgan Library, MS M.459]) giving each a complete transcription with Italian translation accompanied by a codicological, linguistic and iconographic analysis. - [Author]

Language: Italian
ISBN: 978-3-639-65783-8


H. Connor

Medieval uroscopy and its representation on misericords (Clinical Medicine, Journal of the Royal College of Physicians, 2:1, 2002, page 75-77) [Journal article]

"By the fifteenth century the practice of uroscopy was falling into disrepute and the uroscopy flask (matula) became a symbol of ridicule. On the carved misericords in choir stalls, the physician holding the matula was commonly represented as an ape, with the allegorical implications of foolishness, vanity and even lechery. The ape uroscopist was frequently shown with his friend the fox, an animal that was often used to satirise the less-than-perfect cleric, and this association may reflect the close ties between the medical and clerical professions in the medieval period."

Language: English
ISSN: 1470-2118; DOI: 10.7861/clinmedicine.2-1-75; PMCID: PMC4953178


Anna Contadini

A Bestiary Tale: Text and Image of the Unicorn in the Kitab na`l al-hayawan (British Library Or. 2784) (Muqarnas, 20, 2003, page 17-34) [Journal article]

Language: English
ISSN: 0732-2992; OCLC: 8339076


Musical beasts: the swan-phoenix in the Ibn Bakhti-shu-' bestiaries (in The Iconography of Islamic Art: Studies in Honour of Robert Hillenbrand, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2005, page 93-101) [Book article]

Discusses the depiction and description of the si-ra-nas or swan-phoenix in manuscripts of the Kita-b t.aba-'I' al-h.ayawa-n by Ibn Bakhti-shu-', which concern the characteristics of animals, including the musical sound made by this creature.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-7486-2090-7


Albert S. Cook

The Old English 'Whale' (Modern Language Notes, 9:3 (March), 1894, page 65-68) [Journal article]

A discussion of the Whale poem of the Old English Physiologus found in the Exeter Book. Cook focuses on the word Fastitocalon as a name for the whale, and compares it to the name Aspidocalon. Much of the article consists of quotations in German, Greek and Latin.

Language: English


Old English Elene, Phoenix and Physiologus (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1919) [Book]

The Old English Physiologus, or Bestiary, is a series of three brief poems, dealing with the mythical traits of a land-animal, a sea-beast, and a bird respectively, and deducing from them certain moral or religious lessons. These three creatures are selected from a much larger number treated in a work of the same name which was compiled at Alexandria before 140 B. C., originally in Greek, and afterwards translated into a variety of languages into Latin before 431. ... In this standard text, the Old English poems are represented by chapters 16, 17, and 18, dealing in succession with the panther, a mythical sea monster called the asp-turtle (usually denominated the whale), and the partridge. Of these three poems, the third is so fragmentary that little is left except eight lines of religious application, and four of exhortation by the poet, so that the outline of the poem, and especially the part descriptive of the partridge, must be conjecturally restored by reference to the treatment in the fuller versions, - [Preface]

Language: English
LCCN: 19014191; LC: PR1505.C64; OCLC: 2084028


The Phoenix (Boston: Ginn & Company, 1902; Series: Select translations from Old English poetry)

A prose translation into modern English of the Old English poem The Phoenix, from manuscript Exeter Cathedral Library, Exeter Dean and Chapter MS 3501.

Language: English


Translations from the Old English (Hamden, Conn.: Archon Books, 1970) [Book]

Includes the Old English Physiologus, text and prose translation by A. S. Cook, verse translation by J. H. Pitman. Reprint of contributions originally published 1899-1921 as Yale studies in English, v. 7, 21-22, 48, and 63. Includes a reproduction of the original title page of each contribution.

274 pp.

Language: English
LCCN: 75016347; LC: PR1508.T71970; DDC: 829


Albert S. Cook, James Hall Pitman

The Old English Physiologus (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1821; Series: Yale studies in English 63) [Book]

Text and prose translation by Albert Stanburrough Cook. Verse translation by James Hall Pitman. Neither translation is literal; the verse translation in particular takes liberties with the OE text.

Editor's preface dated: March 27, 1921./ "Text is extracted from my edition, The Old English Elene, Phoenix, and Physiologus (Yale university press, 1919) where a critical apparatus may be found."--Pref./ Three short poems of the Exeter book: the Panther, the Whale, and the Partridge; often ascribed to Cynewulf. The last is a mere fragment.

Reprinted by: Folcroft Library Editions, Folcroft, PA, 1973.

25 pp.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8414-1843-8; LCCN: 73004487; LC: PR1752.C61973; DDC: 829/.1


J. C. Cooper

Dictionary of Symbolic and Mythological Animals (London: Harper Collins, 1995) [Book]

Consists of an alphabetic list of animals, with dictionary-style entries; includes many references to the bestiary.

284 p., bibliography, list of authorities.

Language: English
LC: GR820.C66


Brian P. Copenhaver

A Tale of Two Fishes: Magical Objects in Natural History from Antiquity Through the Scientific Revolution (Journal of the History of Ideas, 52:3, 1991, page 373-398) [Journal article]

A study of two fish as magical objects: the echineis, said to have the power to hold back ships; and the torpedo, able to stun at a distance. The author cites ancient authorities (Pliny, Aristotle, Galen, and others) to explore the origins of the legends, and looks at the effects of the scientific revolution on the belief in them.

Language: English


Gala Copley

The Position of London, British Library, MS Arundel 292 in the Medieval Bestiary Tradition (Academia / University of Oxford, 2015)

This paper aims to demonstrate how the historical context of a manuscript can affect our reading of its texts. The case study in this case is London, British Library, MS Arundel 292 and its engagement with pastoral literature, the bestiary tradition, and other texts from Norwich Cathedral Library. First-year postgraduate thesis, MPhil English Studies (Medieval Period), University of Oxford (2015). - [Abstract]

Language: English


The Unity of ‘Panther’, ‘Whale’, and ‘Partridge’ in the Anglo-Saxon Physiologus (Acedemia)

The Anglo-Saxon Physiologus (ASP) is a text that no longer exists in its entirety. Much of its critical study, therefore, has fixated upon the question of how many pages of the work was lost between the beginning and end of the poem commonly titled 'Partridge', when the Exeter Book was damaged by fire. Critics are found to make their own judgement by analysing the work's possible sources and the surviving text. Examination of a facsimile edition of The Exeter Book makes it highly likely that at least two leafs of 'Partridge' are missing, merely from examining the lengths of the other two poems in comparison to the terribly short 'Partridge', beginning grandly at the bottom of the page with a large illustrated 'H' for 'Hyrde' and ending on the next page with only nine lines more. - [Author]

Language: English


Sandra Coram-Mekkey

Mys/mus, qui est tu? (in Elisabeth Mornet & Franco Morenzoni, ed., Milieux naturels, espaces sociaux: Etudes offertes à Robert Delort, Paris: Publications de la Sorbonne, 1997, page 161-175) [Book article]

Discusses the etymology of mus as well as occurrences of this word in scientific literature of Antiquity and the Middle Ages/

Language: French
ISBN: 2-85944-330-4


Vittoria Dolcetti Corazza

Crossing paths in the Middle Ages: the Physiologus in Iceland (Yumpu, 2013)

The Physiologus, originally written down in Alexandria, Egypt, be- tween the end of the second and the beginning of the third century A.D., became one of the most popular handbooks of the Middle Ages since its material dealing with real and imaginary animals, plants and stones, could be constantly manipulated to suit audiences and employed in instructing Christian believers. The two Icelandic fragments, conventionally called Physiologus A and Physiologus B, are independent of each other and seem to have been written in about 1200. Scholars agree in thinking that their source is to be found in the Latin version con- ventionally called Versio B. Although this statement is true in a general sense, it acts as a screen which hides a much more complex reality: textual and iconographic fea- tures give evidence of their derivation from models whose origins lie in England. Moreover the analysis of the chapters dealing with onocentaurs highlights that the two Icelandic Physiologi, in which tradition and innovation mingle profoundly with each other, are original manipulations of the ancient matter. - [Abstract]

Language: English


Francesco Cordasco

The Old English 'Physiologus': Its Problems (Modern Language Quarterly, 10 (September), 1949, page 351-355) [Journal article]

"Scholarship has been faced with two problems in the Old English Physiologus: (1) Does it constitue a small cycle complete in itself, or is it only a remnant of a longer series? (2) What is the bird of the fragment? There has been no unanimous decision. ... The answer to the complex question of the cycle seems to lie in the identification of the bird in the third poem. If the writer selected the bird that succeeds the Whale, the longer-cycle theory is left with argument; if he mechanically followed his source and took the next member, the longer-cycle theory is given substantial credence. The matter of choice is crucial." - Cordasco

Language: English


Rémy Cordonnier

Le Bestiarium et la renaissance du 12e siècle (Medievalista Online, 2020; Series: Number 29)

The 12th century renaissance saw the reappearance of this interest in the world and nature, so characteristic of currents of thought influenced by Aristotelian philosophy. We observe, in fact, with each period of renaissance, a renewed interest in natural sciences in the broad sense. Contemporary literature often defines a bestiary as a collection of fables and morals about animals. A priori, according to this definition, the texts that can be considered as moralized bestiaries are therefore quite numerous. But this genre does not include all medieval treatises devoted to animals. We must not conflate too quickly with the Bestiarium as a literary work and its different avatars. This text is related to the eponymous genre but it nevertheless has its own literary identity which is important to know in order to fully understand the evolution of the genre. - [Author]

Language: French
1646-740X; DOI: 10.4000/medievalista.3856


Haec pertica est regula. Texte, image et mise en page dans lâ "Aviarium" dâ Hugues de Fouilloy (in Baudouin Van den Abeele, ed., Bestiaires médiévaux. Nouvelles perspectives sur les manuscrits et les traditions textuelles, Louvain-la-Neuve: Institut d’études médiévales, 2005, page 71-110) [Book article]

Language: French


Hugues de Fouilloy (Archives de littérature du Moyen Âge (ARLIMA), 2023)

A biography of Hugh of Fouilloy, with a list of his works and manuscripts.

Language: French


L'iconographie du Bestiaire divin de Guillaume le clerc de Normandie (Brepolis, 2022; Series: Répertoire Iconographique de la Littérature du Moyen Age, vol. 8)

p Description and iconographic analysis of the miniatures from the Bestiaire divin of Guillaume le Clerc of Normandy. This volume presents, reproduces and comments on the cycles of illustrations that adorn the manuscripts of the Bestiaire divin. /p

Language: French


L'illustration du "De avibus" de Hugues de Fouilloy : symbolisme animal et méthodes d'enseignement au Moyen Âge (Lille: Université Charles de Gaulle (Lille), 2007)

The Aviarium is a treaty on the exegetical significance of birds. It was written in the middle of the XIIth century by Hugues of Fouilloy, then prior of a community of Augustinian regular canons. In his dedication and his prologue, Hugues states that he conceived the iconographic program of his treaty so as to make it accessible to the illiterates (illiterati), which places it in the tradition of the "picture as literature of the illiterates" concept. The iconographic program of the Aviarium is nothing less than the equivalent to a text for the religious illiterates who must practice the lectio divina in spite of their difficulty to read scriptures. Its illustrations follow the tradition of visual exegesis, which goes back to the Carolingian period but appears to have been systematized in the XIIth century - especially by the school of Saint-Victor - in this period of emergence of new scholastic exegesis methods. The choice of animal symbolism, and of birds in particular, is first motivated by the fact that Hugues addresses a religious audience, traditionally represented by birds in Christian thought, and, secondly, because of the long tradition of the use of bestiaries as teaching manuals in medieval scolae, which also sheds light on the didactic approach of such books. The Aviarium's conception in the middle of the XIIth century and in the context of regular canon orders, made of its iconographic program an invaluable example of the place and function devoted to pictures within a school of thought that expresses/transcribes both the canonical world and the monastic one, alongside the emergence of the universities and of a new way of thinking. - [Abstract]

Language: French
Nationalthesisnumber: 2007LIL30015


Des oiseaux pour les moines blancs: réflexions sur la réception de l'Aviaire d'Hugues de Fouilloy chez les cisterciens (La Vie en Champagne, 38, 2004, page 3-12) [Journal article]

"Auteur dun livre consacre a la symbolique des oiseaux, Hugues de Fouilloy etait proche de la spiritualite de saint Bernard. Ses relations avec les moines expliquent le succes de son oeuvre aupres des Cisterciens. ... Les exemplaires cisterciens constituent a ce jour environ un tiers du corpus (7) des manuscrits conserves du De avibus. Cest le plus important de tous les groupes dattributions de lAviaire. Par ailleurs, les recherches de mes predecesseurs sur le sujet ont etabli que, parmi tous les exemplaires connus, ce sont vraisemblablement les manuscrits cisterciens qui se rapprochent constatations nous ont donc naturellement amene a nous demander pourquoi les cisterciens ont apparemment attache autant d'importance a la copie du De avibus..." - Cordonnier

Language: French


Un 128e Exemplaire de L'aviarium de Hugues de Fouilloy : Bruxelles, Kbr, Ms. Ii 2313 (Revista Signum, 2010; Series: Volume 11, Number 1)

In 2003, Baudouin Van den Abeele added 31 new manuscripts from the Aviarium to the list established by Willene B. Clark in 1992. Since then, two other illustrated copies have been discovered, one in Seville and the other at the Royal Library from Belgium (Koninklijke Bibliotheek van België, Ms. II 2313). We propose here a monographic study of the Brussels copy, including a contextualization of the manuscript within the corpus of Aviaria, which now amounts to 128 copies, followed by the exhaustive codicological notice of the manuscript, as well as the transcription of the text and accompanied translation French. - [Abstract]

Language: French
HALId: hal-01634167


Kathleen Corrigan

The Smyrna Physiologos and eleventh-century monasticism (in Work and Worship at the Theotokos Evergetis 1050-1200, Belfast: Belfast Byzantine Enterprises (Belfast Byzantine texts and translations, 6, 2), 1997, page 201-212) [Book article]

Language: English
ISBN: 0-85389-712-3


P.-P. Corsetti

Note sur les excerpta médiévaux de Columelle (Revue d'histoire des textes, 7, 1977, page 109-132) [Journal article]

Language: French


Peter Costello

The Magic Zoo: The Natural History of Fabulous Animals (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1979) [Book]

"I should like to make clear, at the very beginning of this book, just exactly what I mean by 'magic' in the title. ... By magic I mean the other realm of meaning which lies between man and nature, that world of mystery and enchantment that we first recognize as children in fairy tales. ... Such creatures as the unicorn are not purposeless fantasies. They all have some special meaning. They are all cultural artefacts, as much so as the flint knife of the early shaman, or the space-probe of the modern scientist. They are 'man-made' in a very special sense. ... The natural history of these magical creatures -- and I emphasise that this book is about their natural history only -- is bound up with man's experience of animals, wild and domestic, through the centuries. In the...first part of this book, I shall try and outline man's changing relationship with the animals around him. ... In the second part of the book I have collected together some of the fabulous animals of Western man over a long period of time. ... Though most of this book deals with the natural history of fabulous beasts, the last part takes a brief look at the magical dimensions of man's experience and knowledge of these animals." - Costello

222 pp., 4 leaves of plates, illustrations, bliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-312-50421-7; LC: GR825.C53


André Côté

Un manuscrit oublié du Physiologus (New York, P. Morgan M. 397) (Scriptorium: International Review of Manuscript Studies, 28:2, 1974, page 276-277) [Journal article]

A short discription of a "lost" manuscript containing the Physiologus: New York, Pierpont Morgan Library MS. M. 397. The description includes a list of the 48 beasts found in the manuscript.

Language: French


Shannon Hogan Cottin-Bizonne

Une Nouvelle edition du 'Bestiaire' de Philippe de Thaon (Chapel Hill, NC: The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2003) [Dissertation]

"The goal of the dissertation is to propose a new critical edition of the Bestiaire of Philippe de Thaon, last edited by Emmanuel Walberg in 1900. The edition is accompanied by four introductory chapters which present in order: a brief overview of the bestiary tradition and the works of Philippe de Thaon, an analysis of the three manuscripts containing the Bestiaire, an explanation of the criteria for edition and an examination of the cycle of miniatures conceived to accompany this work. Appendices include: notes indicating Philippe's sources, an index of proper names, a thematic index of beasts, birds and stones mentioned in the bestiary and a glossary." - abstract

PhD dissertation, 2003. 308 p.

Language: French
PQDD: AAT3086514


Paul-Louise Couchoud, ed.

Asiatic Mythology (London: George G. Harrap & Co., 1932) [Book]

Language: English


Cornelia C. Coulter

The 'Great Fish' in Ancient and Medieval Story (Transactions of the American Philological Association, 57, 1926, page 32-50) [Journal article]

"In every age of the world, travellers to far off lands have brought back stories of strange peoples and strange customs, of plants and birds and beasts unknown to those who stayed at home. Perhaps no sight has made a stronger appeal to the imagination than an enormous fish, whose vast bulk lay stretched out on the surface of the sea, or who opened his huge jaws to devour smaller creatures. According as the lines of travel moved to the east or to the west and north, he is pictured, now off the coast of India or among the islands of the Southern Pacific, now on the shores of the Baltic; his dimensions and habits are variously described; but always he is an object of terror, and always he lends himself to stories of adventure and romance." - author

Language: English


John Charles Cox

Bench-Ends in English Churches (London: Oxford University Press, 1916; Series: Church Art in England) [Book]

An extensive survey of bench-end wood carvingin English churches. The are some animal references.

208 p., 164 black & white plates and illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English
LC: NA5075.C7


Patricia Cox

The Physiologus: a Poiesis of Nature (Church History, 52:4, 1953, page 433-443) [Journal article]

"If we were to adopt the standard scholarly perspective on the Physiologus ... we would have to say that, while it is unusually transformative, it is not very good poetry. For, in the traditional view, the imagination of the Physiologus has its base precisely not in reality but in embarrassing flights of zoological fancy. A.-J. Festugiere, for example, characterized the Phusika literature, literature which meditated on nature, as a 'museum of the weird' and contrasted its 'disconcerting credulity' with Aristotle's program of establishing fixed natural laws. In a similar vein, B. E. Perry remarked that the Physiologus was written by 'a simple man for simple people.' Naive and unartistic, fantastical, romantic, and magical, the Physiologus was responsible virtually singlehandedly for blotting out the bright light of Aristotelian science for nearly a thousand years.These scholars obviously have a clear and distinct idea about what constitutes the 'reality' to which the Physiologus was so woefully unresponsive. It is the reality of Aristotelian scientific observation, which catalogues, classifies, orders, and arranges the natural world, placing its bewildering superabundance of forms into a manageable system. From this biological perspective, a document like the Physiologus has no art. ...the reality in which the author of the Physiologus was indeed a specialist may not have been the biological reality of Aristotle but another passion altogether. It is this other reality that I would like to explore in this essay." - Cox

Language: English


Trenchard Cox

The Twelfth-Century Design Sources of the Worcester Cathedral Misericords (Society of Antiquaries, Archaeologia, 1959) [Journal article]

14 pp., 9 pages of plates.

Language: English


Susan Crane

Animal encounters contacts and concepts in medieval Britain (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2013; Series: Middle Ages series)

Traces of the living animal run across the entire corpus of medieval writing and reveal how pervasively animals mattered in medieval thought and practice. In fascinating scenes of cross-species encounters, a raven offers St. Cuthbert a lump of lard that waterproofs his visitors' boots for a whole year, a scholar finds inspiration for his studies in his cat's perfect focus on killing mice, and a dispossessed knight wins back his heritage only to give it up again in order to save the life of his warhorse. Readers have often taken such encounters to be merely figurative or fanciful, but Susan Crane discovers that these scenes of interaction are firmly grounded in the intimate cohabitation with animals that characterized every medieval milieu from palace to village. The animal encounters of medieval literature reveal their full meaning only when we recover the living animal's place within the written animal.The grip of a certain humanism was strong in medieval Britain, as it is today: the humanism that conceives animals in diametrical opposition to humankind. Yet medieval writing was far from univocal in this regard. Latin and vernacular works abound in other ways of thinking about animals that invite the saint, the scholar, and the knight to explore how bodies and minds interpenetrate across species lines. Crane brings these other ways of thinking to light in her readings of the beast fable, the hunting treatise, the saint's life, the bestiary, and other genres. Her substantial contribution to the field of animal studies investigates how animals and people interact in culture making, how conceiving the animal is integral to conceiving the human, and how cross-species encounters transform both their animal and their human participants.

Language: English
978-1-283-89871-3; DOI: 10.9783/9780812206302


Roberto Crespo

Una versione pisana inedita del Bestiaire d'amours (Leiden: Universitaire Pers Leiden, 1972; Series: Collana romanistica leidense, v. 18) [Book]

Richard de Fournival, fl. 1246-1260. Bestiaire d'amour.

119 pp., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Italian
ISBN: 90-6021-156-1; LCCN: 73-343178; LC: PQ1461.F64B433; DDC: 841.1; OCLC: 559227364


Paul P. Cret

Animals in Christian Art (in The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume I, New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1907) [Book article]

A brief article on the depiction of animals in Christian art, primarily in the Middle Ages.

Language: English


Grover Cronin, Jr.

The Besitiary and the Mediaeval Mind - Some Complexities (Modern Language Quarterly, 2, 1941, page 191-198) [Journal article]

"It is the purpose of this paper to indicate some complexities in the study of the Bestiary which seem to be frequently and surprisingly overlooked. Though much valuable work has been done on various individual questions connected with the Bestiary, one cannot escape the suspicion that the more general aspects of interpretation have been unwarrantably simplified. ... The naturally close relations between symbolism and scriptural interpretation are even closer with regard to the Bestiary, for much of this strange lore derives from Biblical accounts of creation. All students of the Bestiary admit this, and it is therefore all the more surprising to find in many of them the assumption that facts did not matter to the early authors of Biblical commentaries, especially of the Hexaemeron type. It is quite true, and scarcely a matter for wonder, that the perception of meaning, the perception of the connection of the isolated fact with more cosmic problems, held a higher place in the hierarchy of values than did the observance of single facts. But it is not true that this kind of subordination implied any contempt for the facts, as such." - Cronin

Language: English


Bestiary material in the literature of religious instruction of Mediaeval England (Madison: University Of Wisconsin - Madison, 1941) [Dissertation]

PhD dissertation at the University Of Wisconsin - Madison. Available in microform from University of Wisconsin Memorial Library, Madison, 1980 (1 reel; 35 mm).

232 p, bibliography.

Language: English
OCLC: 6473843


John Mirk on Bonfires, Elephants and Dragons (Modern Language Notes, 57:2 (February), 1942, page 113-116) [Journal article]

In his homily for the feast of St. John the Baptist John Mirk describes the manner of celebrating the vigil, a description of obvious value to the historian of folk-custom and yet, apparently, little noted. ... But whereas Beleth is content to explain that a fire made of bones was especially popular as a remedy against the pestilential dragon in the time of St. John and that the people annually light similar fires to commemorate the historical fact, Mirk interweaves into his explanation of the custom the old story of Alexander's stratagem against elephants. But what has all this to do with the story of the elephants? Is Mirk merely implying that the same wise clerks who knew the natural history of the elephant were also up on their dragon lore? Clarity is conspicuously absent from the explanation given by Mirk, but an examination of Bestiary beliefs reveals that there is good reason for connecting the stories of the elephant and of the dragon. One of the details of the Greek Physiologus involves the hostility existing between the dragon and the elephant. - [Author]

Language: English


Kevin Crossley-Holland, Bruce Mitchell

The Battle of Maldon, and other Old English poems (London; New York: Macmillan; St. Martin's Press, 1965) [Book]

Includes an modern English translation of the Old English Physiologus (panther and whale), plus a brief commentary.

Language: English
LC: PR1508C7


Carla Cucina

The Rainbow Allegory in the Old Icelandic Physiologus Manuscript (Reykjavík (Iceland): Gripla, 2011; Series: Volume 22)

The purpose of this paper is to present a new semi-diplomatic edition with textual notes and an overall analysis of a short allegorical sermon fragment on the rainbow preserved in the 'Physiologus manuscript' AM 673 a II, 4to, fol. 9 v. Tthis homiletic text, which has been almost completely ignored by scholars, concerns a trichromatic description and tropological explanation of the rainbow, based on the biblical episode of Nnoah's flood (esp. Gen. 9, 13-16). two variant versions of it exist, which are found in Hauksbók and in the so-called Rímbegla, and they are also taken into account here, together with Christian references to the rainbow within the whole Old Icelandic literary corpus. The Icelandic Old rainbow allegory is examined against the Latin-Christian background of exegetical literature concerning both Old general colour-imagery and specific symbolical interpretations of the rainbow, in order to verify possible sources. Ssome analogues both in German biblical epic poetry Old and in the Irish and Continental Hiberno-Latin homiletic production are also investigated. - [Abstract]

Language: English


James B. Cummins

The Paul Mellon collection of sporting books (Yale University Library Gazette, 75:3-4, 2001, page 167-187) [Journal article]

Describes Paul Mellon's collection of sporting books which was bequeathed in 1999 to the Yale Center for British Art in New Haven. The collection is particularly strong in items concerning horses, such as riding, hunting, breeding, and racing. Among the most important works is the English Helmingham Herbal and Bestiary of ca.1500 which contains over 100 images of plants and animals, and the Livre du Roi Modus et de la Reine Racio of ca.1400 which features depictions of the chase.

Language: English
ISSN: 0044-0175


John Cummins

The Hound and the Hawk: The Art of Medieval Hunting (New York: Sterling Publishing, 2001) [Book]

Edition of a text on methods for hunting deer, boar, wolves, foxes, bear, otter, birds, hare, and even unicorns.

Reprint of the 1988 St Martin's Press edition.

306 p., illustrations (some color).

Language: English
ISBN: 1-84212-097-2


Michael J. Curley

Animal symbolism in the prophecies of Merlin (in Willene B. Clark & Meradith T. McMunn, ed., Beasts and Birds of the Middle Ages. The Bestiary and its Legacy, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1989, page 151-163) [Book article]

"...[studies] the extension of bestiary influence to secular medieval genres. ... Curley surveys the use of animal symbolism, including some from the bestiary, in the development of the most enduring of medieval legends, that of King Arthur." - introduction

Language: English


A Note on Bertilak's Beard (Modern Philology, 73:1 (August), 1975, page 69-73) [Journal article]

Commentary on Bertilak's "beaver-hued" beard in fit 2 of Gawain and the Green Night in relation to the allegory of the beaver in the bestiaries, the Physiologus, Solinus, Pliny, and others.

Language: English


Physiologus (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1979) [Book]

Curley has based his translation on the Latin versions of Physiologus as established by Francis Carmody. Curley's intrduction places Physiologus within its intellectual and historical framework. He also provides a selected bibliography and notes. This volume is illustrated with reproductions of woodcuts from the 1587 Rome edition." - [Cover copy]

The present translation is based on the two editions of the Latin Physiologus prepared by Francis Carmody, the y- and b- version [Carmody Y, Carmody B]. I have relied primarily on the y-version since it is generally agreed to be the closer of the two to the Greek original. Whenever important additions or variations are supplied by the b-version, however, I have translated them... - [Introduction]

Language: English
ISBN: 0-292-76456-1; LCCN: 79014096; LC: PA4273.P8E51979; DDC: 883/.01


Physiologus, Fisiologia and the Rise of Christian Nature Symbolism (Viator: Medieval and Renaissance Studies, 11, 1980, page 1-10) [Journal article]

The anonymous author of Physiologus infused these venerable pagan tales with the spirit of Christian moral and mystical teaching, and thereafter they occupied a place of special importance in the symbolism of the Christian world. ... In the following remarks I shall attempt to outline the development of a Christian concept of oooeieiasa, and then go on to show how the author of Physiologus set about to compile his anthology of legends in conformity to the early Christian notion of oooeieissa. - [Author]

Language: English
ISSN: 0083-5897


Andrew Curry

Vikings shipped walrus ivory from Greenland to Kyiv, ancient skulls show (Science, 2022; Series: April 22, 2022)

When archaeologist Natalia Khamaiko first started digging in a vacant lot at 35 Spaska Street in Kyiv, Ukraine, in 2007, her expectations were low. Previous archaeological surveys had yielded little, despite the site’s location along what had once been a thriving medieval waterfront, where Norse merchants from Scandinavia traded furs for silver minted in the Islamic world. Khamaiko and her colleagues had better luck. They unearthed layer after layer of new finds, preserved by periodic flooding from the Dniepr River. A layer dating to the 1100s C.E. yielded gold wire, glass fragments, bits of carved ivory, an iron sword from Germany, and thousands of animal bones, including nine massive fragments that turned out to be walrus snouts. Those snouts and carvings, ancient DNA reveals, came from a genetic group of walruses found only in the western Atlantic Ocean. They suggest a thriving 4000-kilometer trade route stretched from Greenland and Canada to the muddy banks of the Dniepr. - [Author]

Language: English
DOI: 10.1126/science.abq6688


Elisa Curti

Un esempio di bestiario dantesco: La cicogna o dell'amor materno (Studi Danteschi, 67, 2002, page 129-160) [Journal article]

Language: Italian
ISSN: 0391-7835


Georges Cuvier, Theodore Wells Pietsch, ed.; Abby J. Simpson, trans.

Cuvier’s History of the Natural Sciences (Paris: Publications scientifiques du Muséum (National Museum of Natural History), 2012; Series: Archives | 16)

Here, for the first time in English, is Georges Cuvier’s extraordinary “History of the Natural Sciences from Its Origin to the Present Day.” Based on a series of public lectures presented by Cuvier from 1829 to 1832, this first of a five-volume series, translated from the original French and heavily annotated with commentary, is a detailed chronological survey of the natural sciences spanning more than three millennia. It is truly astonishing in its detail and scope. Cuvier was fluent in many languages, English, German, Spanish, and certainly Latin, in addition to French. He was therefore well prepared to investigate and interpret firsthand the scientific literature of Europe as a whole. The work is an affirmation of Cuvier’s vast encyclopedic knowledge, his complete command of the scientific and historical literature, and his incomparable memory. This history is remarkable also for providing in one place a large set of useful references to a vast ancient literature that is not easily found anywhere else. This huge body of information provides us furthermore with unique insight into Cuvier’s concept of the natural sciences, and to the vast breadth and progress of this human endeavor. With this work, Cuvier fills an important gap in philosophical thought between the time of Carl Linnaeus and Charles Darwin. - [Abstract]

Language: French/English
ISBN: 978-2-85653-867-8; : 


Maria Amalia D'Aronco

Considerazioni sul Physiologus antico inglese: Pantera vv. 8b-l3a; Balena vv. 1-7 (AION: Filologia germanica, 27, 1984, page 303-309) [Journal article]

Language: Italian


Verner Dahlerup

Physiologus i to islandske bearbejdelser (Copenhagen: Thiele, 1889) [Book]

A transcription and facsimile of the Icelandic Physiologus, from manuscript Arnamagnæanske Institut, AM 673 a 4º.

92 pp., facsimiles, bibliography.

Language: Danish
LC: PT7318.P6; OCLC: 4560498


Michael Dallapiazza

Der Wortschatz des althochdeutschen 'Physiologus' (Venice: Cafoscarina, 1988; Series: Quaderni della sezione di filologia germanica 1) [Book]

The Old High German Physiologus.

93 pp., bibliography.

Language: German
LC: PA4273.P9D351988; OCLC: 24086176


Gigetta Dalli Regoli

Sirene animalia sunt mortifera: animali e mostri in un architrave Lucchese del XII secolo (Arte Cristiana, 87: 795, 1999, page 405-412) [Journal article]

"Les caracteristiques formelles et iconographiques des monstres sculptes en bas-relief sur l'architrave du portail central de l'eglise de S. Michele in Foro a Lucques, realises au 12e s. Elle sont confrontees aux lettrines de certains manuscrits enlumines contemporains et etudiees dans leur symbolique telle qu'elle est decrite dans les bestiaires et le Physiologus."

Language: Italian
ISSN: 0004-3400


Gera Dambrink

De beestearis : Een opmerkelijke bewerking van Richard de Fournivals Bestiaire d'amour (Nederlandse Letterkunde, 1999; Series: Volume 4:1)

"A remarkable adaptation of Richard de Fournival's Bestiaire d'amour"

Two fragments of a Middle Dutch translation in verse of the Bestiaire d'amour have survived on two sheets of parchment kept in the University Library of Amsterdam under the signature IA 24 f [Universiteit van Amsterdam Bibliotheek, IA 24 f]. One of the sheets contains 114 lines of verse from the first quarter of the translation, the other contains the last 84 verses. The text concludes on the verso of this sheet with 'Explicit die Beestearis', after which the inscription 'Hier beghint Ovidius' with the first ten lines of a poem about love have been preserved. Judging by the dialect, the manuscript originates from West Flanders and is dated around 1290. ... The two sheets contain two columns of text on each side. In a number of places, especially on the verso of the first page, the text is very difficult to read. Here and there spaces have been saved in the columns for miniatures, which, however, have not been added. - [Author]

Language: Dutch


Abbas Daneshvari

Animal Symbolism in Warqa Wa Gulshah (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1986; Series: Oxford Studies in Islamic Art) [Book]

92 pp.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-19-728003-X


Maurizi Dardano

Note sul bestiario toscano (Italia Dialettale: Rivista di Dialettologia Italiana, 30, 1967, page 29-117) [Journal article]

Language: Italian
ISSN: 0085-2295


Masuyo Tokita Darling

A sculptural fragment from Cluny III and the three-headed bird iconography (in L. A. J. R. Houwen, ed., Animals and the Symbolic in Mediaeval Art and Literature (Mediaevalia Groningana, 20), Groningen: Egbert Forsten, 1997, page 209-223) [Book article]

Identified here as the upper part of a slingshot once belonging to a sculpted capital depicting a warrior fighting a monstrous three-headed bird (resembling capitals preserved in other Burgundian churches), an iconography explained here as a metaphor of the spiritual struggles faced by monks between human frailty of the flesh and the ascetic life.

Language: English
ISBN: 90-6980-097-7


Sumithra J. David

Looking East and West : the reception and dissemination of the Topographia Hibernica and the Itinerarium ad partes Orientales in England [1185-c.1500] (St Andrews Research Repository, 2009)

In this study the manuscript transmission, dissemination and reception of Gerald of WalesTopographia Hibernica (TH) and William of Rubruck’s Itinerarium ad partes Orientales (Itinerary) in England c.1185-1500 have been explored. The TH and the Itinerary are well known texts and have been carefully examined by modern scholars. Nevertheless, the afterlives of these two medieval texts have largely been neglected. Similarities in the authors’ approach and interests alongside the obvious difference in subject matter, i.e. the focus on two opposing ends of the believed peripheries of the world, have made the two texts worthy of consideration together. In chapters I and II, the extant manuscripts of each text have been been examined. ... In addition, through the examination of the manuscripts, the surviving attestations from catalogues and correspondence and through the subsequent re-use of the texts within other medieval narratives, this study offers a geographical and literary mapping of the dissemination of both works. It also examines the various uses to which the TH and the Itinerary were put, highlighting in particular the political significance of each text. Furthermore, in chapter III the contents of each manuscript containing the TH or the Itinerary are considered in order to explore the significance, if any, of the accompanying texts. The study culminates in chapter IV with an examination of three medieval bibliophiles: Simon Bozoun, John Erghome and John Gunthorpe, whose association with one or other of the text have offered a further contextualisation of the interest in the text... - [Abstract]

Language: English


F. Hadland Davis

Myths and Legends of Japan (New York: Farrar & Rinehart, 1932) [Book]

Language: English


John Irving Davis

Libellus de Natura Animalium (London: Dawson's of Pall Mall, 1958) [Book]

A 16th century printed text that was ascribed to Albertus Magnus. Reproduced in facsimile with an introduction by J. I. Davis.

The chief aim in publishing this facsimile ... is to reproduce a woodcut book which is not only very rare, but artistically unique. ... Although its authorship is attributed by Sander to Albertus Magnus... it is clear that he had nothing to do with its composition. ... The 'Libellus' was printed between 1508 and 1512 by Vincenzo Berruerio in the smal Piedmontese town of Mondovi, where the earliest book published in Piedmont was printed in 1472. ... To say that only so many copies of a rare book are known is always dangerous, but after the fullest research it appears that apart form this one which I was fortunate enough to acquire some years ago, there are but three other copies surviving: those in the National Library, Turin; the Bodleian Library, Oxford; and the one in the possession of Mr. Philip Hofer, New York..." - [Author]

There is another copy at the Biblioteca della Fondazione Giorgio Cini - Venezia.

3 p. introduction, 64 p. facsimile. Illustrated with woodcut pictures.

Language: English
LCCN: 59023629; LC: PA8275.L51958; DDC: 398.4; OCLC: 2785822


Norman Davis

Notes on the Middle English Bestiary (Medium Aevum, 19, 1950, page 56-59) [Journal article]

Commentary on problems in the language and interpretation of lines 77-80, 274-277 and 419-420 of the Middle English Bestiary, based on the Hall edition of 1920 (British Library, Arundel MS. 292).

Language: English


Elizabeth Dawes

Vestiges des Bestiaires dans la Phraséologie Française (Florilegium, 1998; Series: Volume 15 Issue 1)

French bestiaries, like the Greek and Latin versions of the Physiologus which preceded them, are based on the tradition of encyclopedic compilations by ancient naturalists who described the properties of animals. But unlike encyclopedias, bestiaries aimed to establish correspondences between the physical world and the spiritual world. To the descriptions of animals and their behavior are added their moral and religious symbolism as well as the lessons that Christians must learn from them. Playing on the complementary principles of zoomorphism and anthropomorphism, bestiaries constantly draw parallels between men and animals. - [Abstract]

Language: French
DOI: 10.3138/flor.15.006


Angelo De Gubernatis

Zoological Mythology; or The Legends of Animals (Detroit: Singing Tree Press, 1968) [Book]

Animals in mythology and legend, from India, the Middle East, Greece and Rome, and Western Europe from antiquity to the middle ages. Discusses animals of the land, sea and air. Some of the myths are related to bestiary episodes, making this text useful as background reading.

This is a reprint of the 1872 (London: Trubner) edition.

2 volumes: 432 + 442 p., index.

Language: English
LCCN: 68058904; LC: BL325A6G8


Christopher de Hamel

Beastly Books (The Centre for the History of the Book, CHB News 2004, 2004, 3) [Journal article]

"...a Bestiary was not merely an ill-informed book of natural history. It was in no way a practical guide to identifying animals. It was a religious book. It can best be approached by comparing the medieval monastic technique of studying the Bible. century. We can apply exactly the same technique of study to the Bestiary. ... Just as a medieval biblical writer would be reluctant to discard any verse of the Bible, however questionable its textual authority, for fear of accidentally rejecting authentic text, so too the compilers of Bestiaries did not dare exclude any animal from the canon, however improbable, in case they discarded part of the divine revelation. It is an interesting way of looking at a medieval text, and it tells us much about concepts of textual authority in the Middle Ages." - de Hamel

Language: English


Book of Beasts (Oxford, UK: Bodleian Library, Oxford University, 2008)

A full facsimily of Bodleian Library, MS. Bodley 764, with an introduction and a reference to images by Christopher de Hamel.

Language: English/Latin


Christopher de Hamel, Lucy Freeman Sandler

The Peterborough Bestiary (Luzern: Faksimile Verlag Luzern, 2001) [Book]


All 44 pages of the Peterborough Bestiary are reproduced in the original format of 348 x 236 mm in a limited edition of 1,480 copies world-wide. The volume comes in a carefully hand produced and blind-tooled brown leather binding, a faithful replica of a typical Cambridge binding. All sheets are trimmed in accordance with the original and stitched to the contents by hand The cover is tooled using roulettes, showing motives of the griffon, the lion and the dragon. An academic commentary volume, including a complete transcription and translation of all texts, by Christopher de Hamel, Director of the Corpus Christi Library in Cambridge, and Lucy Freeman Sandler, the great New York University expert in English book illumination, facilitates the understanding of the manuscript." - Publisher

Language: English


Siegfried Walter De Rachewiltz

De Sirenibus: An Inquiry Into Sirens From Homer To Shakespeare (Harvard: Harvard University, 1983) [Dissertation]

PhD dissertation at Harvard University.

"The motif of the Sirens is examined from several different perspectives and in a number of cultural and historical contexts. Chapter I is devoted to a close analysis of the Siren episode in the Odyssey; it is argued that the Sirens not only represent a problematization of the Nature/Culture opposition, but also embody a mode of song which threatens the very narrative structures and conventions of the Odyssey itself. Chapter II explores the various literary and iconographic metamorphoses which the Sirens undergo in post-Homeric classical tradition. Chapter III, devoted to the Christian interpretations of Sirens, deals with patristic writings, with allegorical bestiaries, and with the iconographic traditions of medieval ecclesiastical art: it traces the gradual transformation of the Siren from birdmaid into mermaid and her emergence as a symbol of heresy. Chapter IV builds on this context of Christian interpretation in order to analyze the Siren in Canto 19 of Dante's Purgatorio: it is contended that she represents a particular fusion of the classical Siren with the medieval notion of worldly blandishments. Chapter V examines Platonic and neo-Platonic versions of the Sirens as heavenly muses in reference to the poetry of Petrarch, Bembo, and Aretino. Chapter VI in turn discusses Boccaccio's treatment of the Siren myth in his Genealogia and its influence on Renaissance mythography. Chapter VII follows the various avatars of the Siren as enchantress in the romances and epics of Pulci, Boiardo, Ariosto, Tasso, Spenser, and Camoens. Chapter VIII discusses the Siren as emblem and the emblem as Siren in the Renaissance and touches on the Siren as common printer's mark of the period. Chapter IX treats Shakespeare's image of the Siren/mermaid. Also included are the following appendices: a brief survey of Siren scholarship in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, an excursion into the motif of Sirens in folklore, and a representative sampling of Siren iconography from Greek antiquity through the Renaissance." - abstract

391 p.

Language: English
PQDD: AAT8322330


Elisabeth de Solms

Bestiaire roman: textes medievaux (La Pierre-qui-Vire: Zodiaque, 1977; Series: Les Points cardinaux 25) [Book]

Bestiaries, Romanesque Sculpture, Animals in art. Translation by E. de Solms; introduction by Claude Jean-Nesmy.

195 pp., illustrations (some color), bibliography.

Language: French
LCCN: 77558562; LC: NB175; DDC: 734/.24


Annemarie de Waal Malefijt

Homo Monstrosus (Scientific American, 219:4 (October), 1968, page 113-118) [Journal article]

"The belief in the existence of monstrous races had endured in the Western world for at least 2,000 years. During that time a rich assortment of semihuman creatures were described by explorers and travelers, whose accounts were probably based largely on malformed individuals and the desire to enhance their own fame at home. No part of the human body was neglected; each was conceived as having elaborate variations. There were, for example, people with tiny heads, with gigantic headws, with pointed heads, with no heads, with detachable heads, with dog heads, with horse heads, with pig snouts and with bird beaks. In the absence of knowledge of farawy places (and about the limits of human variation) men populated them with creatures of their imagination." - author

Illustrations from early printed sources.

Language: English


Victor Henry Debidour

Le Bestiaire Sculpté du Moyen Age en France (Paris?: Arthaud, 1961; Series: Grandes Études d'Art et d'Archéologie 3) [Book]

An extensive discussion of bestiary and other animal subjects found in sculpture and other stone works in medieval French architechure. Thoroughly illustrated with high-quality photographs of sculptural details from buildings all over France. Contents: The General Evolution of the Medieval Bestiary; Animal Decoration; The Imaginary Animal; Animal Symbolism.

413 pp. 480 black & white photographs, 36 line drawings, index of subjects, geographical index, cross reference of locations and subjects, table of illustrations, short bibliography.

Language: French


José Hendrik Declerck

Remarques sur la tradition du Physiologus grec (Byzantion: Revue internationale des études byzantines, 51:1, 1981, page 148-158) [Journal article]

Language: French


Pierre Dehaye, ed.

Le bestiaire: des monnaies des sceaux et des medailles (Paris: 1974) [Book]

Contents: La bestiaire des sceaux de l'ancien Orient, by P Amiet. Les bovins, by M Vollenweider. La part du lion, by D Berend. Le serpent d'Asclepios-Esculape, by S de Roquefeuil. Le mythe de la Gorgone Meduse, dans la numismatique antique, by M Le Roy. Le dragon autour de quelques pieces royales francaises, by F Dumas. L'"Agnus Dei" theme monetaire, by M Dhenin. Le bestiaire dans la numismatique d'Extrame-Orient, by M Tessier. Les animaux mythologiques fabuleux ou reels aux revers des medailles, by E Meunier.

535 p., index.

Language: French


Carla Del Zotto Tozzoli

Il Physiologus in Islanda (Pisa: Giardini, 1992; Series: Biblioteca scandinava di studi, ricerche e testi 7) [Book]

Arnamagnaeanske institut (Denmark), Manuscript AM 673a 4*.

127 pp., 22 leaves of plates (facsimiles), bibliography.

Language: Old Norse/Italian
LCCN: 93-174960; LC: PT7320.P482; OCLC: 29489332


Il Physiologus nella tradizione nordica (Pisa: Giardini Editori e Stampatori in Pisa, 1990; Series: Biblioteca Scandinava di Studi, Ricerche e Testi) [Book]

132 p., illustrations.

Language: Italian
ISBN: 88-427-1444-5


Ariane Delacampagne, Christian Delacampagne

Animaux étranges et fabuleux, un bestiaire fantastique dans l'art (Paris: Citadelles & Mazenod, 2003) [Book]

Language: French
ISBN: 2-85088-197-X


Here Be Dragons: A Fantastic Bestiary (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2003) [Book]

"Sphinxes, hydras, chimeras, dragons, unicorns, griffins, sirens, and centaurs--fantastic animals can be found in works from Greek vases to paintings by Bosch, Goya, and Picasso, from folk art to comic strips, advertising, and Hollywood movies. Here Be Dragons is a lavishly illustrated compendium of the marvelous menagerie of imaginary animals that humans have conjured up over the ages. Ariane and Christian Delacampagne take us on a visually and intellectually riveting journey through five thousand years of art, examining the symbolic meanings of such creatures and what they say about the unconscious life of the human mind. In the first book to explore this subject with such cross-cultural and chronological range, the Delacampagnes identify five basic structures (unicorn, human-headed animal, animal-headed human, winged quadruped, and dragon) whose stories they relate from prehistory to the present day. They also provide fascinating sociological and psychoanalytical insight into the processes through which artists have created these astonishing animals and how they have been transmitted from culture to culture." - publisher

200 p., color illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-691-11689-X; LCCN: 2003051741; LC: N7745.A5D43132003; DDC: 700/.47421


Léopold Delisle

Notice sur les manuscrits du "Liber floridus" de Lambert, chanoine de Saint-Omer (Paris: Notices et extraits des manuscrits de la Bibliothèque nationale et autres bibliothèques, 1906; Series: 38:2) [Book]

Notes on the manuscripts of the Liber Floridus of Lambert of Saint-Omer. Includes extensive information on some of the manuscripts, including chapter and folio content lists; there is also a summanry of each chapter.

The author's original manuscript has come down to us. After having been kept for a long time by the monks of Saint Bavo in Ghent, it is now kept in the library of the University of Ghent. The manager of this depot ... was good enough to leave this very precious volume in my hands for a long time, and to give me the means of comparing it with the other copies of the same work... I have been able to compare the Ghent manuscript with the nine copies whose existence has been recognized so far, and which all derive more or less directly from the copy preserved at Ghent. ... I will describe each of these manuscripts, beginning with that of Ghent, of which I will demonstrate the character of an original copy and of which I will place the date beyond all dispute. This copy has undergone more than one alteration, and in its current state it has several major gaps, most of which can be filled with the help of copies made prior to the disappearance of the leaves, the loss of which we regret. ... These copies are nine in number: two at the National Library in Paris; one at the Musée Condé, in Chantilly; one at Douai; one at Leiden; two in The Hague; one in Wolfenbittel and one in a private library in Italy. All of them, with the exception of the two last, have passed before my eyes, and I have been able to study them at leisure, several times, comparing them sheet by sheet with the original copy. - [Author]

215 p., illustrations.

Language: French


Christine Deluz

Le Livre des merveilles du monde (Paris: CNRS Editions, 2000) [Book]

A critical edition of the French Mandeville's Travels. The introduction includes biographical information on Mandeville, and details on the manuscripts used in the edition and on the versions of the text.

528 p., map, index of places, index of names.

Language: French
ISBN: 2-271-05744-2; LC: G370.M2M3612


Elizabeth den Hartog

In the midst of the nations...: the iconography of the choir capitals in the Church of Our Lady in Maastricht (Zeitschrift für Kunstgeschichte, 62: 3, 1999, page 320-365) [Journal article]

"A thorough study of the set of 20 capitals in the choir ambulatory of the church of St. Mary in Maastricht. The capitals portray Biblical scenes, animals, monsters, birds, naked and scantily-clad humans, and humans fighting and being attacked by animals. Explores potential sources such as the 200 A.D. Physiologus and derivative bestiaries. Speculates on meanings and questions such as whether the capitals can be read as a coherent series. Compares the cycle with the work by the same atelier in the church of St. Servatius in Maastricht and dates them to c. 1150-1160. Considers the place of the Second Crusade. Concludes that the capitals were created in an environment that embraced the ideas of St. Bernard of Clairvaux."

Language: English
ISSN: 0044-2992


Ferdinand Denis

Le Monde enchanté, cosmographie et histoire naturelle fantastiques du moyen âge (Paris: Burt Franklin, 1965) [Book]

A survey of fantastic natural history from the eighth to the sixteenth century. Includes a long section on the Tresor of Brunetto Latini and the age of Dante, as well as sections on Isidore of Seville, science under Charlemagne, marvels, animals of the Talmud, Marco Polo, and the New World of the sixteenth century. Appendixes provide a French translation of the letter of Prester John, and an account of the El Dorado legend. There is also an extensive annotated bibliography (to 1845), organized by subject.

Reprint of 1845 (Paris) edition.

376 p., illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: French
LCCN: 66020702


Rodney Dennys

The Heraldic Imagination (London: Barrie & Jenkins, 1975) [Book]

A general introduction to medieval heraldry, focusing on the use of animals. Includes sections on human monsters, lions and kindred creatures, fabulous beasts, eagles and fabulous birds, dragons and fabulous reptiles. The main sections are: Heralds and Armory (an introduction to the topic); The Literature of Heraldry (medieval texts dealing with heraldry); The Heraldic Imagination in Action (the animals used in heraldry and their symbolic meaning). There are many bestiary references, and a large number of good illustrations. There is also a glossary of heraldic terms and a list of primary medieval heraldic treatises.

224 p., color and black & white illustrations, bibliography.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-214-65386-2; LC: CR1612D45


Anthony Dent

Donkey : The Story of the Ass from East to West (London: Harrap, 1972) [Book]

Spanning prehistory to the present day, the story of the donkey, ass & mule.

175 p., illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English


Albert Derolez

The Autograph Manuscript of the "Liber Floridus": A Key to the Encyclopedia of Lambert of Saint-Omer (Turnhout: Brepolis, 1998; Series: Corpus christianorum. Autographa Medii Aevi, 4) [Book]

A study of the original copy of the Liber Floridus of Lambert of Saint-Omer, the manuscript Universiteitsbibliotheek Gent MS 92. Includes data on the copies of the Liber Floridus and related manuscripts, and a survey of the sources.

This encyclopedical compilation of the early twelfth century (finished 1121) was composed, written and illustrated by an obscur canon of the Chapter of our Lady in Saint-Omer (France, dépt. du Pas de Calais). It may be considered one of the earliest illustrated medieval encyclopedias and its maps, diagrams and pictures (some of them masterpieces of Romanesque art) are world-famous. Due to its apparent lack of logical structure, however, Lambert's work has often been dismissed as an unorganized compilation. Against this still prevailing opinion the present book shows that the encyclopedia is the expression of a highly personal global view of the world. It was to be a brilliant synthesis, pervaded by an emphatic sense of symbolism, allegory and eschatology. The close codicological and textual analysis of the complete work shows also why Lambert failed to achieve his object in its full splendour; how especially external circumstances have caused a gradual weakening of the original train of thought as well as of the original beauty of the manuscript. The book focuses on the fundamental links between Lambert's thoughts and the material structures he had to create to give them their place in his book. - [Summary]

Language: English
ISBN: 2-503-50792-1; LC: AE2.L363D471998; DDC: 200; OCLC: 40406249


Lambertus qui librum fecit - een codicologische studie van de Liber Floridus-autograaf (Gent, Universiteitsbibliotheek, handschrift 92) (Brussels: Paleis der Academiën, 1978; Series: Verhandelingen van de Koninklijke Academie voor Wetenschappen, Letteren en Schone Kunsten van België - Klasse der Letteren Jg.40 nr.89)) [Book]

A codicological study of manuscript Universiteitsbibliotheek Gent MS 92. With a summary in English: The genesis of the Liber Floridus of Lambert of Saint-Omer.

511 p., illustrations.

Language: Dutch
OCLC: 13613196


Liber Floridus Colloquium: Papers Read at the International Meeting Held in the University Library, Ghent, on 3-5 September 1967 (Gent: E. Story-Scientia, 1973) [Book]

91 p., illustrations, facsimiles.

Language: English


The making and meaning of the 'Liber Floridus' : a study of the original manuscript, Ghent, University Library MS 92 (London, Turhout: H. Miller, 2015)

The Liber Floridus (1121), composed, written and illustrated by Canon Lambert of Saint-Omer, is the earliest illustrated encyclopedic compilation of the Latin West. Its autograph (Universiteitsbibliotheek Ghent, MS 92), a masterpiece of Romanesque book art and one of the most complicated manuscripts ever made, has been studied by the author for almost half a century. The present book is the culmination of this research and provides a detailed codicological and textual analysis, showing how this wonderful book was put together and which are the hidden ideas Lambert sought to develop in its hundreds of texts and pictures dealing with astronomy, geography, natural history, history, religion and countless other subjects. The book is illustrated with some 100 colour reproductions and numerous diagrams of quire structures. Three tables help the reader to understand the author's argument, and full indices give access to the text and provide the basis for further investigation of individual chapters and pictures. - [Publisher]

Language: English
ISBN: 978-1-909400-22-1


Report on the proceedings of the Liber Floridus Colloquy, Ghent University Library, 5-6 September 1967 (Gent: Centrale Bibliotheek van de Rijksuniversiteit, 1969; Series: Mededeling, nr. 12) [Book]

Liber Floridus Colloquium, University of Ghent, 1967, on the work by Lambert of Saint Omer.

Language: English
LC: Z674; OCLC: 1122649


Freda Derrick

Tales Told in Church Stones: Symbolism and Legend in Medieval Architecture and Handicrafts (London: The Lutterworth Press, 1935) [Book]

A survey of stories told in medieval church sculpture and woodcarving. Many animal references.

128 p., illustrations (line drawings of sculpture, by the author), index.

Language: English


Lucile Desblache

Bestiaire du roman contemporain d'expression française (Clermont-Ferrand: Presses universitaires Blaise Pascal, 2002; Series: Cahiers de recherches du CRLMC) [Book]

178 p., bibliography.

Language: French
ISBN: 2-84516-190-5


J. Deschamps

Nieuwe fragmenten van Van den Vos Reynaerde (in Aspects of the Medieval Animal Epic, Louvain: Leuven University Press, 1975, page 199-206) [Book article]

"In juni 1971 zijn er fragmenten van een vijfde handschrift van Van den vos Reynaerde of Reynaert I aan het licht gekomen. Tevoren werden twee volledige handschriften en fragmenten van twee handschriften ontdekt : omstreeks 1805 het Comburgse handschrift of hs. A (Stuttgart, Wurttembergische Landesbibliothek, Ms. poet. et phil. fol. 22); in 1889 de Darmstadtse fragmenten of hs. E (Darmstadt, Hessische Landes- und Hochschulbibliothek, 3321); in 1908 het Dyckse handschrift of hs. F (Schloss Dyck bij Neuss) en in 1933 de Rotterdamse fragmenten of hs. G (Rotterdam, Gemeentebibliotheek, 96 B 5). De nieuwe fragmenten zullen we de Brusselse fragmenten of hs. H noemen (Brussel, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, IV 774). Volledigheidshalve vermelden we de twee handschriften van Reynaerts historie of Reynaert II, die zoals bekend uit een bewerking van Reynaert I (vs. 1-3468) en een vervolg (vs. 3469-7805) bestaat : het Brusselse handschrift of hs. B (Brussel, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, 14.601) dat het werk volledig en het fragment-Van Wijn of hs. C ('s-Gravenhage, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, 75 B 7) dat slechts vs. 67557791 en dus geen enkele versregel van de bewerking van Reynaert I bevat." - Deschamps

Language: Dutch


Nicole Deschamps, Bruno Roy, Robert Marteau

Le bestiaire perdu (Montreal: Presses de l'Universite Montreal, 1974; Series: Etudes Francaises 10:3) [Book]

Contents: L'universe des bestiaires (Deschamps & Roy); Le bestiaire retrouve (Deschamps); Les mues de serpent (Marteau); La belle e(s)t la bête : aspects du bestiaire féminin au moyen âge (Roy).

"L'universe des bestiaires" includes extracts from various bestiaries, plus a survey of beasts with bibliographies for each. "La belle e(s)t la bête : aspects du bestiaire féminin au moyen âge" discusses "aspects du bestiaire feminin du moyen age".

16 plates, black & white, of sculpture animals, paintings.

Language: French
ISSN: 0014-2085; LC: PS8001.E8


Janine Deus

Der "Experimentator" : eine anonyme lateinische Naturenzyklopädie des frühen 13. Jahrhunderts (University of Hamburg, 1998)

The "Experimentator": an anonymous Latin natural encyclopedia of the early thirteenth century

The subject of the dissertation was prompted by the quotations in the Liber de natura rerum by the Dominican Thomas of Cantimpré (ca.1201-ca.1270), which Thomas took from an anonymous work and which he attributed to a so-called Experimentator. In 1968, while researching Thomas in Stuttgart, Christian Hünemörder discovered a manuscript in which some of the quotes attributed to the “Experimentator” were found again. Further research unearthed other manuscripts (Sloane, Chambéry, and an abridged version of the same work). During his research on the work De proprietatibus rerum by the Franciscan Bartholomaeus Anglicus, with which the work of the "Experimentator" has fundamental similarities such as the almost identical prologue, the structure of the work and the material used, Heinz Meyer discovered further manuscripts of the "Experimentator". Due to the relationship of the "Experimentator" to the work of Bartholomaeus Anglicus, the anonymously transmitted "Experimentator" is also listed under the name of Bartholomaeus Anglicus and under the title De proprietatibus rerum in the indexes of manuscripts. Since the actual connection between the two works is still largely unclear, the previously ascribed title De proprietatibus rerum is not retained here. In this way, confusion between the two works can be avoided. The task of the dissertation is to present a body of work (i.e. there is a body of common material based on a common theological objective, which is processed differently) and to show its relationship to the two most important medieval encyclopedias of Thomas de Cantimpré and Bartholomaeus Anglicus. The dissertation sees itself as a basic overview of the various experimental versions and their reception. Detailed individual examinations must be reserved for a later date. When examining the individual manuscripts, it turned out that there are at least three different experiential versions, namely versions I and II as well as an abridged version, which differ in some respects in terms of structure, scope and the material used. - [Abstract]

Language: German


Marco Dezzi Bardeschi

Bestiario minimo (Firenze: Alinea, 1990; Series: L'arte per Reggio per l'arte) [Book]

Published on the occasion of the exhibit "Conservazione e metamorfosi," held in Reggio Emilia at the Civici musei L. Spallanzani Jan. 27-Feb. 18, 1990.

95 p., illustrations (some color).

Language: Italian
LCCN: 90178377; LC: N7745.A5D491990


Michel Dhenin

L' "Agnus Dei" thème monétaire (in Pierre Dehaye, ed., Le bestiaire: des monnaies des sceaux et des médailles, Paris, 1974, page 163-177) [Book article]

Language: French


Adele Di Lorenzo

La tradition manuscrite du Physiologus grec au miroir de témoins conservés en France et en Italie : réflexions pour une étude comparée (RursuSpicae, 2019; Series: Volume 2)

A new codicological and paleographic analysis of four Italian manuscripts of the Greek Physiologus (third type of the second version in Sbordone's nomenclature), compiled in the 1550s-1560s, enables to determine the conditions of their production. These luxurious copies commissioned by the Roman Curia were done in collaboration by various, more or less identified members of the entourage of the scriptor Emmanuel Provataris and of Manuel Malaxos. These copies are well known for their illustrations and demonstrate the persistence of preference for the manuscript book, even though the first printing of the work is based on them (1587). - [Abstract]

The manuscripts are:

Language: French
DOI: 10.4000/rursuspicae.666


Giuseppe Di Stefano, Rose M Bidler

Le Le bestiaire, le lapidaire, la flore : actes du Colloque international, Universite McGill, Montreal, 7-8-9 octobre 2002 (Montreal: Editions Ceres, 2004; Series: Le moyen francais, 55-56) [Book]

Publication of a conference on bestiaries, lapidaries and plants, in Montreal, October 2002.

351 p.. illustrations.

Language: French
ISBN: 0-919089-64-X; LC: PQ157; OCLC: 61398807


Locutions et editions (in J. Claude Faucon, Alain Labbe & Danielle Queruel, Miscellania Mediaevalia: Melanges offerts a Philippe Menard, France: Honore Champion, 1998, page 417-428) [Book article]

Examine les locutions proverbiales en moyen francais tirees du Bestiaire et le lapidaire du Rosarius.

Language: French


F. N. M. Diekstra

The Physiologus, the Bestiaries and Medieval Animal Lore (Neophilologus: An International Journal of Modern and Mediaeval Language and Literature, 69:1, 1985, page 142-155) [Journal article]

Old English period; Physiologus and its relationship to the bestiary; treatment of animal lore; influence on Christian iconography.

Language: English
ISSN: 0028-2677


Ilya Dines, The

Bestiary in British Library, Royal MS. 2 C. XII and its Role in Medieval Education (The Electronic British Library Journal, 2014)

The process of medieval education is still very obscure to us, and indeed very little is known about how texts were used in schools. This is particularly true of the role and function of the influential genre of medieval bestiaries in the process of educating novices and pupils in cathedral schools and monasteries. The Royal collection contains one peculiar manuscript, namely British Library, Royal MS 2 C XII, a bestiary of the so-called BIs Family, made in the first quarter of the thirteenth century, probably at the abbey of St Peter at Gloucester. The text of this bestiary was published at the end of nineteenth century, and thus Royal 2 C. XII is one of the first bestiaries published by modern scholars. The published text has almost nothing exceptional, and it was perhaps for this reason that this manuscript has been almost absolutely neglected by specialists in the field. Nevertheless, the manuscript (contrary to almost all other known manuscripts of this genre) has a large number of contemporary glosses, which were not published, and which shed a light on how the bestiary was used and how students were intended to learn the basic tenets of Christian doctrine from its stories about animals and birds. - [Author]

Language: English


Between Image and Text. Long Rubrics and Captions in Medieval Bestiaries (De Gryuter, 2016; Series: Jahrbuch des Instituts für Frühmittelalterforschung der Universität Münster)

Captions are very common in medieval manuscripts. They inhabit the liminal space between text and image and, formally speaking, belong to both and neither. Their indeterminacy has contributed to the current state of research on captions: so far, captions as a genre sui generis are rarely discussed in the scholarly literature, in works dealing with either the history of art or with the history of text. Here, I will discuss in detail the corpus of captions as they appear in the genre of Medieval Latin bestiaries, one of the most influential types of medieval pedagogical books. - [Author]

Language: English


The Copying and Imitation of Images in Medieval Bestiaries (Journal of the British Archaeological Association, 2014; Series: 167)

In this paper, I bring to scholars’ attention for the fi rst time and discuss in detail Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Bodley 602, and Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Douce 88, two 13th-century English manuscripts containing bestiaries that are rarely mentioned in the scholarly literature. It will be argued that the images in these manuscripts supply proof of direct copying, although at fi rst glance, the miniatures in question do not appear to be similar. This is because the artist of Douce 88 made numerous additions to and elaborations upon the images he was copying. For example, one scene in MS Bodley 602 has four geese, while the corresponding scene in Douce 88 has three. But, when the texts and details of the images are compared, it becomes clear that the images were indeed copied by the artist of Douce 88 before he elaborated on them. - [Author]

Language: English


A Critical Edition of the Bestiaries of the Third Family (Hebrew University: Hebrew University, 2008)

The five bestiaries of the Third Family (Cambridge, Fitzwilliam Museum MS 254; Cambridge, University Library MS KK 4.25; London, Westminster Abbey MS 22; Oxford, Bodleian Library MS Douce 88; Oxford, Bodleian Library MS e Musaeo 136), all of them of English origin dating back to the 13th century, have received far less scholarly attention than the bestiaries of other families. Their abnormal structure (as opposed to that of other families) has been only briefly discussed and the order of species has been specified inaccurately. - [Abstract]

Language: English
OCLC: 457118645


The Earliest Use of John of Salisbury’s Policraticus: Third Family Bestiaries (VIATOR, 2013; Series: 44.1)

Medieval Latin bestiaries from the very moment of their formation incorporated excerpts from many different sources. Most of these additions have been discussed in the scholarly literature, but not the excerpts from the Policraticus, the text written by Thomas Becket’s secretary John of Salisbury in 1159. The excerpts, which are anecdotal in nature, appear in Third Family bestiaries written in the diocese of Lincoln at the beginning of the thirteenth century, in the circle of the famous teacher and theologian William de Montibus. It is surprising that the author of the bestiary would choose anecdotes from the Policraticus, whose main subject is what we now would call political science and social relationships. This article is devoted to the functions of the Policraticus in the bestiaries, as well as to the reasons the author of the Third Family bestiary archetype chose to use it as a source. - [Author]

Language: English


A French modeled English bestiary: Wormsley Library MSBM 3747 (Mediaevistik, 2007; Series: 20)

A description, codicology and list of contents for the Bestiary Wormsley Library, MS BM 3747.

Language: English


The Function of Latin Bestiaries in Medieval Miscellanies (Getty Publications, 2019; Series: Book of Beasts: The Bestiary in the Medieval World)

Bestiaries as a genre of medieval literature began to be studied at the end of the nineteenth century, and since then, major work has been done on the subject. Nonetheless, crucial questions still await a proper response: What were bestiaries? Or, more specifically, how we can determine their purpose? This essay will examine a specific group of miscellanies to ascertain the original function of the bestiaries included within them. - [Author]

Language: English


The Hare and its Alter Ego in the Middle Ages (Reinardus, 2004; Series: Volume 17)

This article deals with the topic of hares and rabbits in Creation scenes and Naming of the beasts scenes in bestiaries and other medieval manuscripts. It has not been generally noticed that in these scenes the hare, which has negative connotations both in classicalzoology and in biblical exegesis, is curiously shown in a ‘privileged’ position as one of the ‘first’ animals created. I suggest that this occurs because the hare has been confusedwith another animal, shafan sela which is mistranslated as chyrogrilus and Lepusculus in the Septuagint and Jerome’s Vulgate, and which takes on a positive symbolism in the Scriptures and in exegetical texts.



A Hitherto Unknown Bestiary – Paris, BN MS Lat. 6838B (Rivista di Studi Testuali, 2004-05; Series: 6-7)

Notes on Bibliothèque Nationale de France, lat. 6838B.

Language: English


Medieval Latin Bestiaries (The Encyclopedia of British Medieval Literature, Wiley-Blackwell, 2016)

A general introduction to medieval Latin bestiaries, with information on the bestiary manuscript families.

Language: English


Medieval Manuscripts at the Library of Congress (Washington: Library of Congress, 2016)

A video lecture by Ilya Dines on Bestiary manuscripts held by the Library of Congress.

Kluge Fellow Ilya Dines discusses his current project to catalogue 150 medieval manuscripts and fragments held by the Library of Congress. He analyzes the importance of the Library's medieval manuscript collection and outlines the role it could play in expanding and deepening understandings of the medieval era.

Language: English


Mnemonic verses concerning animals and birds in Cambridge University Library, Ms Oo. Vii.4 (Reinardus Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 2020)

This article is devoted to an essentially unknown fragment containing a collection of thirteenth-century mnemonic verses about animals and birds. It is a logical continuation of a study I published in 2010 in Reinardus about the entire corpus of mnemonic verses that appear in medieval Latin bestiaries. As the core of that investigation, I chose a late thirteenth-century English bestiary of the so-called Second Family (Bodleian Library, MS. Bodley 533). In that article I suggested that further research would likely uncover more such examples in non-bestiary manuscripts. This was confirmed in 2018 by a newly discovered fragment in Cambridge University Library, MS Oo.vii.48, containing the verses present in MS Bodley 533, and additional verses about animals and birds. Using this fragment, I put forward the idea that there was an established medieval tradition of collecting and keeping organized mnemonic verses devoted to animals and birds. I argue that finding these verses from bestiaries and other sources together in one fragment sheds light on the interrelations of bestiaries and other genres. - [Author]

Language: English


Mnemonic Verses in Medieval Bestiaries (Reinardus, 2010; Series: Volume 22)

Mnemonic verses were one of the most popular tools for medieval teaching. These verses are attested in all genres of medieval literature, but strangely enough they are rare in medieval bestiaries, which are primarily a didactic genre. My paper will discuss a previously neglected case of one Second Family late thirteenth-century bestiary of English origin, namely Oxford, Bodleian Library MS Bodley 533. Surprisingly, in this manuscript there are eleven sets of verses, mostly quatrains of so-called Leonine hexameters, which represent sui generic summaries for the chapters on various bestiary creatures. The present article discusses for the first time these previously unpublished verses and analyzes their function in the manuscript. - [Author]

Language: English


The Problem of the Transitional Family of Bestiaries (Reinardus, 2012; Series: Volume 24)

It is already almost 100 years since Montague Rhodes James divided all bestiary manuscripts that were known to him into groups or families. Since then, his scheme has undergone several revisions, and the table established through the modifications of McCulloch and Yapp shows five families of bestiary manuscripts, that is BIs, Transitional, Second, Third and Fourth. The present article will treat in detail the so-called Transitional Family of manuscripts, which includes six late twelfth- and thirteenth-century manuscripts, and is undoubtedly the most puzzling of the families. Not only the structure of the family, but also its proper placement in the above mentioned table has been subject to debate. My analysis of the textual sources of each chapter of the Transitional Family shows that, contrary to the arguments of earlier scholars, it was the Second Family bestiary, together with manuscripts of BIs and H-type BIs, were the main components used in the composition of the Transitional Family, rather than the Transitional Family (as its name implies) having been the basis of the Second Family. Moreover, I argue that the manuscripts of the Transitional Family, contrary to earlier classifications, do not represent a homogeneous group, but rather form four distinct subfamilies. - [Author]

Language: English


Producing the Bestiary: From Text to Image (Revista Medievalista, 2021; Series: Vol. 29)

In this paper, I investigate the relationship between the text and the images in medieval Latin bestiary manuscripts. Medieval bestiaries, which are derived from the ancient Physiologus, comprise a nearly 1800-year-old tradition and have spawned several hundreds of copies throughout Europe, including a smaller subset of Latin bestiaries. Summarizing the first ever comprehensive analysis of the entire corpus of Latin bestiaries, this paper examines the patterns of deviations, or exceptions from the rigorous canon governing bestiary illustrations. I use the deviations to investigate the relationship between the work of the scribe and that of the artist in the production of bestiary manuscripts in order to determine to what extent medieval artists used already existing illustrations, and, conversely, when and to what extent they were willing or able to deviate from the canon. In the latter case, I try to explore the artist’s possible motivations, as well as the reasons for choosing specific motifs. - [Author]

Language: English


The Westminster Bestiary (Westminster Abbey, MS 22): Analysis and Commentaries (Siloé, arte y bibliofilia, 2019)

This book is a commentary volume, in both English and Spanish, to the facsimile edition of the Westminster bestiary (Westminster Abbey Library, MS 22), which had been published by Siloe Publishing House, Burgos, in 2014. It is based on a revised version of Ilya Dines’ PhD dissertation entitled “A Critical Edition of The Bestiaries of The Third Family,” written in 2008. The commentary volume includes a preface written by Christopher Hammel, an introduction to the genre of medieval bestiaries, the text of the Westminster bestiary (in Latin) transcribed by Ilya Dines with a full analysis of the sources and arguments for the place of origin of the manuscript and possible authorship; a Spanish translation of the preceding texts by Ilya Dines and textual commentary made by María Isabel Velázquez Soriano, three appendices, a long bibliography and full index of sources and subjects. The volume has 404 pages, it includes all (reduced) illustrations of the bestiary.

Language: English


Laurinda S. Dixon

Music, medicine, and morals: the iconography of an early musical instrument (Studies in Iconography, 7-8, 1981-1982, page 147-156) [Journal article]

"Examines the carved decoration of the late 14th c. north Italian mandora or gittern (Metropolitan Museum, New York) with regard to medieval legends and allegories of music. In general, the decorative scheme relates the early lore of bestiaries (particularly the Physiologus) to Christian morality. Specifically, animals such as the dog and stag appear in their capacities both to make and enjoy music and to attract Christian faith. Music as a venereal talisman appears in the scene of falconers and cupid, whereas the diabolical dragon beneath them indicates the pitfalls of adultery. The mandora therefore becomes a miniature sermon against faithlessness in marriage, pleading for pure Christian love as opposed to carnal lust." - Dixon

Language: English


Vittoria Dolcetti Corazza

Il fisiologo nella tradizione letteraria germanica (Alessandria: Edizioni dell'orso, 1992; Series: Bibliotheca germanica; Studi e testi 2) [Book]

Physiologus -- Italian, Anglo-Saxon, Latin, Middle High German, Old High German, and Old Icelandic.

281 pp., 19 pp. of plates, illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: Italian
ISBN: 88-7694-087-1; LCCN: 92-225596; LC: PN831.C671992; OCLC: 31009660


Mary Donatus

Beasts and Birds in the Lives of the Early Irish Saints (Philadelphia: 1934) [Book]

Language: English


Lukas J. Dorfbauer

Fortunatian von Aquileia, Origenes und die Datierung des Physiologus (Revue d'Etudes Augustiniennes et Patristiques, 2013; Series: Volume 59, Issue 2)

This article examines four passages of the Gospel commentary by Fortunatianus of Aquileia, which deal with the allegorical interpretation of four animals (viper, snake, stag and fox). What Fortunatianus has to say on the characteristics of these animals, and what he gains from it for his exegesis of the Gospels, is compared in a first step with the correspondent interpretations found in the Physiologuss, in a second step with those given by Origen. By this means, the possible sources of Fortunatianus are to be determined, and the controversial question of the Physiologus’date is to be clarified. It is demonstrated that the Physiologus did use works by Origen; thus, this work dates in all probability from the second half of the 3rd century. Fortunatianus did not use the Greek original of the Physiologus nor a Latin translation; he depends indirectly from Origen, most probably via the lost commentary on Matthew by Victorinus of Pettau. - [Abstract]

Language: German
1768-9260; DOI: 10.1484/J.REA.5.102904


Anna Dorofeeva

Miscellanies, Christian reform and early medieval encyclopaedism: a reconsideration of the pre-bestiary Latin Physiologus manuscripts (Historical Research, 2017; Series: Volume 90, Issue 250)

This article examines the evidence of the early medieval Latin Physiologus manuscripts for compilatory practices within the context of Carolingian ecclesiastical and educational reform in the period c.700–1000. It argues that miscellany manuscripts, in which the Physiologus is exclusively found in this period, represent a conscious and highly organized encyclopaedic drive that created multi-purpose manuals as part of the response to programmatic social change at a local level. Miscellanies are therefore a key and overlooked source for the use of knowledge in monastic writing centres, and for early medieval intellectual history more generally - [Abstract]

Language: English
DOI: 10.1111/1468-2281.12198


Reading Nature in the Early Middle Ages (Arc Humanities Press, 2023)

Writing, Language, and Creation in the Latin Physiologus, ca. 700–1000.

This book is a new cultural and intellectual history of the natural world in the early medieval Latin West. It examines the complex relationships between language, texts, and the physical world they describe, focusing on the manuscripts of the Physiologus - the foundation of the medieval bestiary. The Physiologus helped to shape the post-Roman worldview about the role and place of human beings in Creation. This process drew on classical ideas, but in its emphasis on allegory, etymology, and a plurality of readings, it was original and distinctive. This study demonstrates precisely how the early medieval recontextualization of existing knowledge, together with a substantial amount of new writing, set the course of ideas about faith and nature for centuries to come. In doing so, it establishes the importance of multi-text miscellanies for early medieval written culture. - [Abstract]

Language: English
ISBN: 978-1-80270-165-4


siren: a medieval identity crisis (Mittelalter. Interdisziplinäre Forschung und Rezeptionsgeschichte, 2014)

We first meet the siren early in Greek mythology, where it is a flesh-eating part-bird, part-human demon. It happily ignores the question of which bit is which, and what gender the whole should be called. In slightly later stories it’s persuaded to be a beautiful woman with the body of a bird from the waist down. This allows it to make sweet music and lure in handsome men sailing by. Life is good, especially since, as we hear from Vergil and Ovid, it gets to live on Anthemoessa, an island whose name means ‘flowery’. The siren and its sisters are either the daughters of the river god Achelous or the sea god Phorcys, and are well-established in Greek literary monuments such as the Odyssey in the eighth century B.C. and the Argonautica in the third century B.C. No problems there so far. Admittedly all the sirens commit suicide in despair at failing to trap either Odysseus or Jason of the Argonauts, but let’s not talk about that. - [Author]

Language: English


Sébastien Douchet

La peau de centaure à la frontière de l'humanité et de l'animalité (Micrologus: Natura, scienze e società medievali. Nature, Sciences and Medieval Societies, 13, 2005, page 285-312) [Journal article]

Focuses in particular on this image in the prose romance Chevalier du Papegau, arguing that the skin is where the transition between the two characters of this mythical beast is most clearly revealed; providing also general cultural and historical context on the centaur as man-beast hybrid.

Language: French
ISSN: 1123-2560


Norman Douglas

Birds and Beasts of the Greek Anthology (London: Chapman and Hall, 1928) [Book]

Birds and beasts mentioned in the lyrics of the Greek Anthology, under the headings of mammals, birds, reptiles and batrachians, sea-beasts, and creeping things.

" strikes me that these utterances of a considerable section - segment, rather - of the ancient world present, for all their variety, a certain inner coherence. That must be because the writers happened to be poets, who view life from more or less the same angle through all the ages; poets, whose observations of natural phenomena were casual and unsystematic, whose interpretation of such things shifts more slowly than that of the scientists, and shifts, when it does so, along a plane different from theirs. ... Like our own poets, they are quite ready to introduce the animal creation into their pages, and in so doing they often register what seem to be the most irrelevant and wearisome trivialities... But these trivialities, I think, have their significance. That is why the reader of the following pages cannot but notice that I have chronicled them one after the other with pedantic deliberation, to the verge of tediousness and possibly beyond it. My reason is this : it is trivialities, mere trivialities, which betray them in the long run; nothing but the cumulative weight of trifles can turn the scale and demonstrate the particular detail wherein our point of view has come to change from that of their time. For we find no Natural History, properly speaking, in the Greek Anthology; what its authors say about animals constitutes a human rather than a scientific document; it is a minute but clearly demarcated province in the history of feeling..." - introduction

Originally published in Florence (privately printed) in 1927. Also published by J. Cape and H. Smith, New York, 1929.

215 p., bibliography, index.

Language: English
LC: PA3459.D6


Isabelle Draelants

Aristote, Pline, Thomas de Cantimpré et Albert le Grand, entomologistes? Identifier chenilles, papillons et vers à soie parmi les ‘vermes’ (British School at Athens, 2016; Series: Animals in Ancient and Medieval cultures and societies. Topics and methodological issues)

A comparison between some significant stages of ancient and medieval entomological knowledge, based on the examination of the records on certain insects studied by Aristotle, Pliny the Elder and Avicenna (the caterpillar, the butterfly, the silkworm). The perspective starts from what the Dominican naturalist Albert the Great and his contemporaries took from these sources. Such an approach allows us to evaluate the degree of permanence and innovation of entomological information between Antiquity and the Middle Ages, while focusing on the study of a few specific cases. - [Abstract]

Language: French
HALId: halshs-03092166


Arnold de Saxe (Atelier Vincent de Beauvais, 2016; Series: March 17, 2016)

Arnold de Saxe, who is found under the names Arnoldus Saxo or Arnoldus Luca in the manuscripts which preserve his work, and which Vincent de Beauvais calls Arnoldus de Saxonia, is the author of works on natural philosophy, medicine and morality in the 13th century. From now on, his philosophical and scientific production has been brought to light and characterized through the examination of his documentation (sources) and his situation in time and in an environment. The intellectual context of Arnold of Saxony is that of scholasticism at a time when knowledge increased considerably following the intense translation activity of the 12th century , the birth and development of universities, the establishment of Dominican and Franciscan studia and, in parallel, the evolution of intellectual techniques. Arnold of Saxony was only known through an encyclopedia of natural and moral philosophy which was placed between 1220 and 1230 and of which only one manuscript was known (Universitätsbibliothek Erfurt, O. 77). He was therefore considered "the first encyclopedist of the 13th century" and had his place in certain prosopographical dictionaries, but barely three old German works had been devoted to him (E. Stange, dissertation, 1875, V. Rose, 1885 and E. Stange, edition, 1904-1907). Since then, other – partial – manuscripts of this work in five parts have come to light, which must henceforth be called De floribus rerum naturalium and not De finitus rerum naturalium. This brings to around fifteen manuscript witnesses, from which a critical edition is in preparation. - [Author]

Language: French


Atelier Vincent de Beauvais (Institute for Research and History of Texts (IRHT) , 2014)

The Atelier Vincent de Beauvais deals with medieval encyclopedias and transmission of knowledge. It investigates compilations that aim to comprehend all the bookish knowledge available : Imago mundi, de rerum natura, De proprietatibus rerum, Speculum, Flores rerum naturalium, thesaurus, etc. The workshop was founded in the late 1970s in a CNRS team in Nancy, France, during historical work on Vincent of Beauvais’ Speculum maius, therefore, it is eponymous of this prolific medieval encyclopedist, but the research carried out expands to all medieval encyclopaedias, with special emphasis on sources of natural philosophy.

Language: French


Bartholomeus Anglicus – Bartholomew the Englishman (Routlege, 2021; Series: Routlege Medieval Encyclopedia Online)

The Franciscan Bartholomew the Englishman is one of the main so-called encyclopaedists of the thirteenth century, the golden age of medieval encyclopaedism. Bartholomew is mainly known through his compilation of natural and theological science divided in nineteen books, called De proprietatibus rerum (On the properties of things), which circulated very widely since the seventeenth century. - [Abstract]

Language: English
HALId: halshs-03333840,version1


De la compilation au centon. Les emprunts à Arnold de Saxe dans l’Hortus sanitatis : quels intermédiaires? (Presses universitaires de Caen, 2013; Series: Kentron)

The Hortus sanitatis presents, from the edition princeps of 1491, numerous quotations relating to stones, plants and animals, attributed by a “source marker” to a certain Arnoldus. Under this nominal medieval reference, we must recognize Arnold of Saxony... What is therefore the point of devoting a particular study to the borrowings from Arnold of Saxony, since they are "publicized" by Vincent de Beauvais...First of all, to precisely illustrate this phenomenon of misleading stratigraphy specific to encyclopedic compilation: the designated source is rarely the real source; a quotation marker, author name or work, hides multiple realities and textual origins. - [Author]

Language: French
978-2-84133-486-5; DOI: 10.4000/kentron.642


Un encyclopédiste méconnu du XIIIe siècle : Arnold de Saxe (Université catholique de Louvain, 2000)

The PhD examines all the works of Arnoldus Saxo ('Arnoldus Luca', 'Arnoldus de Saxonia'), a German encyclopaedist working c. 1225-1260, as can be inferred by the examination of the documentary sources ("auctoritates") of his works. His encyclopaedia, the De floribus rerum naturalium, was known since the work of V. Rose and E. Stange; this PhD identifies thoroughly the scholarly sources of the De floribus (Aristotle, Ps.-Aristotle, Avicenna, Constantine the African, Seneca, Boethius, Martianus Capella, Hermes, Aaron and Evax, Iorach...) and adds eight new manuscripts of the work to the four previously known. Furthermore, the research brings to the light and studies four other works of Arnoldus Saxo unknown before: 1. A Sermo de libris philosophorum (florilegium), 2. A medical treatise (Practica medicine), 3. A moral dialogue formatted like a 'disputatio' (De iudiciis virtutum et viciorum), 4. A Consolatio inspired from the 'De copia verborum' attributed to Seneca. All these works make use of the same sources, generally abbreviated the same way and probably collected in the beginning of Arnold's activity for teaching purposes. The research also shows the immediate reception in the Franciscan and Dominican milieu, through the use of the biological and mineralogical matter of the De floribus rerum naturalium by Bartholomeus the Englishman (De proprietatibus rerum), Vincent de Beauvais (Speculum naturale, VIII) and Albertus Magnuss (De mineralibus, tr. 2 and tr. 3); it also postulates that Arnoldus Saxo (called 'Arnoldus Luca Magdeburgensis' in the Ms. of Heidelberg) worked in Magdeburg during the '30 of the 12th century.

Language: French
HALId: tel-00700745


Introduction à l'étude d'Arnoldus Saxo et aux sources du De floribus rerum naturalium (Wilhelm Fink Verlag, 2002; Series: Die Enzyklopädie im Wandel vom Hochmittelalter bis zur frühen Neuzeit. Akten des Kolloquiums des Projekts D im SFB 231 (29.11.-01.12.1996), 78)

Study and identification of the naturalistic and moral sources (authorities, works and authors) used in the 1650 quotations that make up "De floribus rerum naturalium", the five-part encyclopedia written by Arnold of Saxony around 1230-1240. - [Abstract]

Language: French
HALId: halshs-03096187


Une mise au point sur les oeuvres d’Arnold de Saxe (Bulletin de Philosophie Médiévale, 1993, 1994; Series: 34, 35)

Part 1: Focus on the discovery of various works produced by Arnold of Saxony in the first half of the 13th century, in addition to the De floribus rerum naturalium (an encyclopedia that was edited in 1905 by E. Stange under the name "De finibus rerum"). The discovery of a medical treatise (Practica medicine - De egrotantibus partibus omnium membrorum a capite usque ad pedes), a treatise on virtues and vices (De iudiciis virtutum et viciorum), and a small moral dialogue (Liber notabilium de consolatione Senecae) imitating the Pseudo-Senecian De remediis fortuitorum. Part 2: The first part of the article provides an overview of the manuscript witnesses and the contents of the four works that can now be attributed to Arnold of Saxony (1st half of the 13th century). The second part confronts these data with the author's own statements about his writings, and proposes an edition of the prologues of the works brought to light, with a commentated translation. - [Abstract]

Language: French
HALId: halshs-03092143; HALId: halshs-03092143; DOI: 10.1484/J.BPM.3.471


Sources des Encyclopédies Medievalese (SourcEncyMe) (L’Institut de recherche et d’histoire des textes, 2008)

SourcEncyMe (SOURCes des ENCYclopédies MEdievales) develops a corpus of medieval Latin encyclopedias and gradually identifies the Greek, Arabic and Latin sources of scientific and philosophical thought, sources drawn by encyclopaedists in the preceding centuries. SourcEncyMe is devoted to the history of the transmission of Greek, Arabic and Latin texts conveyed by Latin encyclopedic compilations, mainly in the 13th century, when the effort to assimilate ancient and Arabic knowledge was most important in the world. western history. Later encyclopedias are also treated progressively, when they reuse those of the 13th century. The objective of the SourcEncyMe program is therefore to put online and treat in an erudite way all this heritage of medieval knowledge that at the time was grouped under the name of "philosophy", "theology", or even " history" (including hagiography and classical authors). However, the project places particular emphasis on natural philosophy, that is, on the science of nature. SourcEncyMe should constitute a reference tool to know the learned library of the “Century of encyclopaedism” (1180-1280) and beyond, and to highlight the techniques of medieval compilation by successive layers of information and by citation. The phenomenon of quotation is indeed massive in encyclopedias, where it sometimes constitutes more than 90% of the material. This is the reason why we have divided the corpus into “citation units” going from one medieval reference to another, that is to say from one “source marker” to another. - [Web site]

Language: French


La transmission du De animalibus d’Aristote dans le De floribus rerum naturalium d’Arnoldus Saxo (Leuven University Press, 1999; Series: Aristotle’s Animals in the Middle Ages and Renaissance, Series I, Studia XXVII)

Study of the zoological contents and the hundred or so quotations from Aristotle's "De animalibus" in Arnold of Saxony's encyclopedia (2nd third of the 13th c.), which is one of the first witnesses to the posterity of Aristotle's zoology. - [Abstract]

Language: French


Isabelle Draelants, Arnaud Zucker

La conversation des encyclopédistes (RursuSpicae, 2020; Series: 3)

"The Scholarly Conversation between Encyclopaedists". Downloadable full text in EPub format.


  • Yoan Boudes: The Woman Philosopher with the Unicorn. Animal Knowledge and Human Knowledge in Hildegard of Bingen’s Physica
  • Elisa Lonati: Thomas of Cantimpré’s Liber de natura rerum in Vincent of Beauvais’s Speculum maius: A Survey of the Quotations, with an Inquiry on the Version Used and Some Competing Sources
  • Thierry Buquet: Information relating to Northern Fauna in the Liber de natura rerum by Thomas Cantimpratensis
  • Grégory Clesse: From Sources to Compilations: Portraying the Ostrich in the 13th-Century Compilations about Nature of the Mendicant Orders
  • María José Ortúzar Escudero: Ordering the Soul. Senses and Psychology in 13th Century Encyclopaedias

Language: French/English
2557-8839; DOI: 10.4000/rursuspicae.1311


Le Physiologus. Manuscrits anciens et tradition médiévale (RursuSpicae, 2019; Series: 2)

Downloadable full text in EPub format.


  • Emmanuelle Kuhry: Overview of the Manuscripts and New Resources for the Study of the Manucript Tradition of the Latin Physiologus
  • Adele Di Lorenzo: The Manuscript Tradition of the Greek Physiologus According to the Manuscripts Preserved in France and in Italy: some Considerations for a Comparative Study
  • Stavros Lazaris : The Dialogue Between Text and Images in the Physiologus from Sofia (Dujcev gr. 297): the Case of the Echidna
  • Françoise Lecocq: The Phoenix in the Byzantine Physiologus by Pseudo-Epiphanius and in the Vienna Physiologus : a Textual Mistake and an Etymological Interpretation
  • Jacqueline Leclercq-Marx: An Exemplary Transposition: The Relationship between Text and Image in The Brussels Physiologus (MS KBR 1066-77; Meuse, end of the tenth century?)
  • Thierry Buquet: De Proprietatibus Quorundam Animalium : a Bestiary in the ms. 28 of Avranches Library
  • Mattia Cipriani: The Physiologus in Thomas de Cantimpré’s Liber de Natura Rerum
  • Elisa Lonati: Did Bartholomew the Englishman know the Physiologus? A Survey
  • Beatrice Amelotti: Some notes on a minor source of Giovanni da San Gimignano’s Liber de exemplis et similitudinibus rerum: the Physiologus
  • Lucía Orsanic: The Basilisk, from the Bestiary to the Spanish Book of Chivalries. The Case of Palmerín de Olivia (Salamanca, Juan de Porras, 1511)
    • Language: French/English
      2557-8839; DOI: 10.4000/rursuspicae.411


Clarck Drieshen

Animals on coats of arms (London: British Library, Medieval manuscripts blog, 2020; Series: 21 January 2020)

Medieval and early modern coats of arms — visual designs symbolising the heritage and achievements of individuals and families — are teeming with animal life. These animals are depicted according to heraldic conventions, but sometimes they also display fabulous features originating from medieval illustrated ‘books of beasts’, known as bestiaries. It can sometimes be difficult to understand what these borrowings from the bestiary tradition represent. Luckily, we have a guide book at our disposal, namely the 15th-century Middle Scots Deidis of Armorie (found in Harley MS 6149). This ‘heraldic bestiary’ explains what the behaviours and appearances of animals on coats of arms indicate about the origins of specific families. - [Author]

Language: English


The Flower of Nature (London: British Library, Medieval manuscripts blog, 2017; Series: 10 February 2017)

The British Library's Digitised Manuscripts site has recently acquired some new residents, including unicorns, amorous elephants, humans and dragons. These can all be found in the recently digitised Der naturen bloeme or The Flower of Nature [by Jacob van Maerlant] (Additional MS 11390), a natural encyclopedia and bestiary in Middle Dutch verse. - [Author]

Language: English


Knight v griffin (London: British Library, Medieval manuscripts blog, 2019; Series: 27 December 2019)

...knights also had a more fearsome natural adversary, a fabulous creature from Ethiopia or India, with the body of a lion and the wings, head and (occasionally) talons of an eagle. That beast was none other than the griffin. Images and descriptions of knights fighting griffins abound in medieval art and literature. They range from the woodcarvings on the benches of Norwich Cathedral and St Botolph’s Church at Boston (Lincolnshire) to the margins of medieval manuscripts, such as this Psalter (British Library, Additional MS 24686), originally intended as a wedding gift for Prince Alphonso (d. 1284), son of King Edward I.

Language: English


Erik Drigsdahl

Bestiarium of Anne Walsh: A CHD Guide to the KB Online Digitized Facsimile (Center for Håndskriftstudier i Danmark, 2000) [Web page]

A basic description of the manuscript, with a listing of the beasts along with some commentary and a partial transcription.

Language: English


G. R. Driver

Mythical Monsters in the Old Testament (in Studi Orientalistici in onore di Giorgio Levi Della Vida, Rome: Instituto per L'Orienta, 1956, page 234-249) [Book article]

Language: Italian


Michael D. C. Drout

An investigation of the identity of the "Partridge" in the Old English "Physiologus" (University of Missouri-Columbia, 1993) [Dissertation]

MA dissertation at the University of Missouri-Columbia.

Language: English
LC: PN45.X1993; OCLC: 32600503


"The Partridge” is a phoenix: revising the Exeter Book Physiologus (Neophilologus, 2007; Series: Volume 91)

The poem about a bird on folios 97v to 98r of the Exeter Book that has been traditionally called “The Partridge” is unlikely to be about that particular bird and more likely to be about the phoenix. The case for the phoenix is supported by the structure of the Anglo-Saxon Physiologus as a whole, with the “The Panther” representing Christ, or Christ’s death, “The Whale,” the devil or the descent into hell, and the bird poem, Christ’s or man’s resurrection. The appearance of a marvelous odor in the other two Physiologus poems suggests that such an odor would have appeared in the third, also supporting the phoenix as the identity of the bird. If the lines on 97v and 98r are indeed part of the same poem, the presence of the words hweorfan and cyrran in the homiletic passage also supports the link with the phoenix. The use of animal exempla for didactic purposes also links the Physiologus poems to other poems in the Exeter Book (such as the riddles) and to the cultural concerns of the 10th-century Benedictine Reform. - [Abstract}

DOI: 10.1007/s11061-006-9014-z


George C. Druce

An Account of the Myrmecoleon or Ant-lion (Antiquaries Journal, 3, 1923, page 347-364) [Journal article]

This article is a thorough exploration of the ant-lion, tracing the roots of the legend to Greek and Biblical sources, with reference to the bestiaries, the Physiologus, Isidore of Seville's Etymologies, Gregory's Moralia in Job, the Septuagint, the Romance of Alexander, and other sources. Druce also discusses the legends of the ant (including the Indian or Ethiopian gold-digging ant), and comments on the "real" ant-lion, Palpares libelluloides.

Black & white illustrations, 4 black & white plates.

Language: English


Amimals in Medieval Scupture (Proceedings of the Cambridge Antiquarian Society, 1917; Series: 20)

Abstract of a Lecture delivered February 28, 1916.

The number of carvings of animals, both in stone and wood, still existing in our churches is very large. Many of them are of a curious character, and would be difficult to account for without reference to the sources from which. they were derived. The evidence points to the carvers having worked chiefly from pictures-and not from natural models, recomposing the subjects according to their needs. Many of the creatures which they depicted were either fabulous, or so rare that they were not likely to have seen them. Of the many sources from which the carvers borrowed, an important one was undoubtedly the illustrated bestiaries, which were very popular in the Middle Ages, especially in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. They contain many pictures of animals, birds and reptiles. - [Author]

Language: English


The Amphisbaena and its Connections in Ecclesiastical Art and Architecture (Archaeological Journal, 67, 1910, page 285-317) [Journal article]

In December, 1909, I had the privilege of reading a paper before the Institute upon the symbolism of the crocodile, in which I made considerable use of the mediaeval bestiaries as a source of information. I endeavoured to show the correspondence between the illustrations in them and the details of ecclesiastical figure sculpture, with a view to identifying various animal forms in the latter, and to explain their meaning. I shall proceed on somewhat similar lines in the present paper with regard to the amphisbaena, which appears in the form of a dragon in the church sculptures, possessing the peculiar feature of a second head upon the end of its tail. There is a very large number of sculptured dragons in church architecture, and I am under the impression that they are generally regarded as representing the dragon, that is the devil or Satan in symbolic form. - [Author]

Language: English


Animals in English wood carvings (Walpole Society, London (Annual Volume of the Walpole Society), 3, 1913-14, page 57-73) [Journal article]

Bestiaries form the source for animal figures shown in wood-carving. Compare with Morgan Library, MS. M.81.

Language: English


Bestiary Notebooks (London: Unpublished, before 1948) [Book]

Society of Antiquaries of London: DRUCE COLLECTION (archives). MS 784, volumes 13-22. Ten notebooks containing analyses of MS bestiaries. - ref. SAL/MS/784/13-22.

Contents of MSS are listed with descriptions of representations and folio references. As follows:

  • SAL/MS/784/13. BL Harl. 4751, 3244; Add. 11283; Royal 12 C.xix; Royal 12 F.xiii;
  • SAL/MS/784/14. BL Harl. 273, Sloane 3544 and 278, and Egerton 613; Westminster Chapter Library 22;
  • SAL/MS/784/15. Bodl. Lib., Douce 151, 167; Oxford, St John's College 178, 61;
  • SAL/MS/784/16. Bodl. Lib., Bodl. 602, 764, Douce 88, 132, Ashmole 1511;
  • SAL/MS/784/17. Cambridge, Univ. Lib. Kk-4-25, Ii-4-26, Gg-6-5;
  • SAL/MS/784/18. Cambridge, Fitzwilliam Museum 254; S. C. Cockerell MS; Dyson Perrins MS 26;
  • SAL/MS/784/19. Canterbury Cathedral Library D. 10; Paris, Arsenal 3516; Copenhagen, Univ. Lib. 673A;
  • SAL/MS/784/20. Brussels, Bibl. Roy. 10. 074; BL Royal 2 B.vii; Sion College L 40. 2/L. 28; BL Cotton Vespasian A vii, Stowe 1067;
  • SAL/MS/784/21. Paris, Bibl. Nat. MSS fr. 1444, 14969-70, 14964;
  • SAL/MS/784/22. 'Bestiary texts transcribed or compared' containing entries arranged alphabetically by animals, with MS references

Language: English


The Caladrius and its legend, sculptured upon the twelfth-century doorway of Alne Church, Yorkshire (Archaeological Journal, 69, 1912, page 381-416) [Journal article]

This article is nominally about the sculpture of Alne Church, but in fact is an extensive exploration of the caladrius legend. Druce uses the sculpture as the starting pointing, then traces the history of the caladrius legend back though the Middle Ages and into Antiquity. The sources and history of the legend occupy the bulk of the article, which also includes discussions of the treatment of the caladrius in several medieval manuscripts. The article includes ten black & white images, eight of them illustrations from manuscripts.

Language: English


Chest at Chippenham Church (Wilts) (Journal of the British Archaeological Association, 31, 1925, page 230-236) [Journal article]

A wooden chest of thirteenth-century date decorated with religious scenes, but also with unicorns, fox with crozier preaching to geese, leopards, stag chased by hound, and owl teased by birds - all are Bestiary subjects and parallels are given.

Language: English


The Elephant in Medieval Legend and Art (Archaeological Journal, 76, 1919, page 1-73) [Journal article]

In this article Druce describes not only the legend and art of the elephant, but also the relation of the legends of the dragon and mandrake to that of the elephant. Examples and images are taken from manuscripts, church carvings, and heraldry.

Language: English


Font in Brookland Church (Kent) (Journal of the British Archaeological Association, 30, 1924, page 76-83) [Journal article]

Discussion of the choice of subjects on a twelfth-century circular lead font: selected from the Labours of the Month and the Signs of the Zodiac, with beasts based on Livre de Creatures.

Language: English


On the Legend of the Serra or Saw-Fish (Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of London, 2nd series, XXXI, 1919, page 20-35) [Journal article]

This article is a detailed exploration of the mythology, iconology and depiction of the sawfish in medieval manuscripts and other artwork.

Language: English


The Medieval Bestiaries and their Influence on Ecclesiastical Decorative Art (British Archaeological Journal, Volume 25; 26, 1919; 1920, page 41-82;35-79) [Journal article]

The object of the present paper is to give a brief account of the Medieval Bestiaries, and their influence in certain spheres of art. The Bestiarium, or Book of Beasts, may be fitly described as a religious Natural History Book. Little or nothing is known about its origin, but there is a probability that it was compiled by a Greek monk of Alexandria about the end of the fourth or early part of the fifth century. ... We do not know whence the artists got their models, but it is unlikely that the figures were done from nature, except perhaps in the case of domestic or easily accessible animals, and then only to a limited extent. This may be better understood if the subjects are divided into three groups; namely, fabulous creatures, which the artists could not have seen; rare or inaccessible animals, which they were not likely to have seen; and domestic or accessible animals, with which they would be well acquainted. ... That the Bestiaries were used in the interest of decorative art as applied to ecclesiastical buildings there is no doubt. Their religious character was ample justification. There is an instance of what is practically a complete Bestiary painted in a church in France, at St. Savin-le-Mont, upon two piers towards the west end of the nave. The subjects, forty in number, are arranged in two vertical rows on each pier, and are coloured and bordered exactly as in the MSS. - [Author]

This is a two part article. Part one was published in 1919 in the British Archaeological Journal Volume 25, and part two was published in 1920 in Volume 26.

Language: English
OCLC: 270095013; DOI: 10.1080/00681288.1919.11894541; DOI: 10.1080/00681288.1919.11894541


Notes on Birds in Mediaeval Church Architecture (Antiquary, Volume 50, Issue 7 (July); Issue 8 (August); Issue 10 (October), 1914, page 248-253; 298-301; 381-385) [Journal article]

One of the problems still awaiting the archeologist is the identification of | the numerous carvings of birds in churches. This is not so difficult in the case of birds which possess distinctive natural features, such as the peacock, swan, and owl, or where there are accessory details, as in the case of the pelican or ostrich; but where birds occur singly and have no special characteristics, it is generally impossible to distinguish them. The medieval bestiaries which contain pictures and descriptions of many animals, birds, and reptiles, are of great value, for the carvers made good use of them when seeking suitable subjects for decorative purposes, and a comparison of sculpture with miniature often leads to identification. The religious character of these manuscripts provided the carvers with the justification they needed for the use of any particular animal or bird mentioned in them, and this granted, there was no limit to the treatment of the subject. Where it was a fabulous or rare animal, the manuscript illustration was often closely followed, and even in the case of better known animals the carvers seem to have relied on the pictures. There is evidence that accurate treatment of anatomical features was not regarded as of much importance. Details generally were suppressed, as it was impossible to render in stone or wood everything that could be drawn with pen and ink, and so long as the subject was understood, it was hardly necessary. - [Author]

Language: English


Notes on the History of the Heraldic Jall or Yale (Archaeological Journal, 68, 1911, page 173-199) [Journal article]

This article is a wide-ranging discussion of the beast called yyale, eale or jall, both in bestiary and heraldic contexts.

After a description of several uses of yale images in heraldic contexts on carvings and seals, Druce gives a history of the yale in bestiary manuscripts. Illustrations from several manuscripts are analysed in detail. Druce compares the heraldic images with those in manuscripts, and discusses the origin of the yale legend in Pliny's Natural History. An attempt is then made to identify the yale with a real beast; Druce concludes that such an identification is not possible. Next Druce looks at a variant of the yale, found in French manuscripts, and called the centicore. Finally, the use of the antelope in manuscripts and heraldry is compared to that of the yale; as part of this comparison Druce provides an extensive history of the antelope legend.

Illustrated with numerous black & white photographs of manuscripts, carvings and seals.

Language: English


Some abnormal and composite human forms in English Church Architecture (Archaeological Journal, 72, 1915, page 135-186) [Journal article]

The so-called grotesque figures which we see carved in our churches are of two kinds ; those exhibiting malformations which would perhaps now be termed 'freaks,' and composite forms both human and animal. Many of the latter seem to be but fanciful combinations copied from illuminated manuscripts, in the margins of which they occur freely ; but in certain cases their history may be traced and their presence in church architecture accounted for. - [Author]

Language: English
DOI: 10.5284/1068319


The Sow And Pigs; A Study In Metaphor (Archaeologia Cantiana, 46, 1934, page 1-7) [Journal article]

A short article on the motif of the sow and her piglets in English church carving.

Language: English


The Stall Carvings in the Church of St. Mary of Charity, Faversham (Kent) (Archaeologia Cantiana, 50, 1938, page 11-32) [Journal article]

Discusses and illustrates the fourteenth-century designs of the misericords and the 'bench-elbows', showing that the choice of subject is taken from the Bestiary and from fabulous stories. Parallels are given to other contemporary English church woodwork.

Language: English


The Sybill Arms At Little Mote, Eynsford (Archaeologia Cantiana, 28, 1909, page 363-372) [Journal article]

A discussion of the bestiary symbolism found in the arms of the Sybill family in a house at Little Mote, Eynsford. The arms include a tiger looking into a mirror; Druce explains the bestiary tale of the tiger and her cubs. Six black and white illustrations of the tale from a carving in the house and from bestiary manuscripts.

Language: English


The Symbolism of the Crocodile in the Middle Ages (Archaeological Journal, 66, 1909, page 311-338) [Journal article]

An extensive survey of the use of images of the crocodile in medieval architectural decoration and in manuscript illustration, with a discussion of the symbolism involved.

Among the numerous animals found in ecclesiastical figure sculpture it is remarkable that so picturesque a character as the crocodile is rarely met with in any easily recognizable form. That it was frequently represented in some form or other seems more than likely from the fact that it can be shown by reference to medieval manuscripts to have been the subject of an extensive symbolism. The object of the present paper is to endeavour to show what that symbolism was, and in what circumstances and form we should expect to find the crocodile in church architecture. - [Author]

Black & white illustrations of manuscripts and sculpture.

Language: English


The Symbolism of the Goat on the Norman Font at Thames Ditton (Surrey Archaeology, 21, 1908, page 109-112) [Journal article]

A discussion of a carved figure on a Norman stone baptismal font in the village of Thames Ditton, south west of London. Druce concludes that the goat-like animal depicted is probably intended to be the ibex.

Three black & white plates.

Language: English


R. W. Drury, S. S. Drury

In Pursuit of Pelicans: unposted letters to friends (Concord, N.H.: Privately printed, 1931) [Book]

Charming, quirky, pieces on pelican symbolism and its expression in British, European and some American churches.

Language: English


Jacques Duchaussoy

Le Bestiare Divin (Paris: 1958) [Book]

Focuses on the spiritual allegory of each animal.

Language: French


Gaston Duchet-Suchaux, Michel Pastoureau

Le bestiaire médiéval: Dictionnaire historique et bibliographique (Paris: Léopard d'or, 2002) [Book]

167 p., 16 p. of plates.

Language: French
ISBN: 2-86377-176-0; LCCN: 2003485438; DDC: 900; OCLC: 51666355


Joëlle Ducos

Encyclopédie médiévale et langues européennes: réception et diffusion du ‘De proprietatibus rerum’ de Barthélemy l’Anglais dans les langues vernaculaires (French Studies, 2016; Series: Volume 70, Issue 3)

‘Plus un texte était aisément disponible pour les lecteurs du Moyen Âge’, writes Géraldine Veysseyre at the start of her contribution to this volume, ‘moins le chercheur contemporain a de chances de disposer d’une édition scientifique moderne’ (p. 15). Work is now at least underway to produce critical editions of two of the most successful encyclopaedic works of the Middle Ages: Bartholomew the Englishman’s mid-thirteenth-century De proprietatibus rerum, and the French adaptation of this text made by Jean Corbechon, c. 1372. In anticipation of the fruits of this labour, Joëlle Ducos has here brought together papers originally presented at a workshop held at the Sorbonne in 2008. The result is a useful overview of the current state of research into Corbechon’s Livre des propriétés des choses and adaptations of De proprietatibus rerum into other European vernaculars. Corbechon’s Livre des propriétés des choses is the focus of the four essays that make up Part One. In their attempts to pinpoint source manuscripts, analyse sumptuous illustrative programmes, and trace the evolution of the work in print, the contributors can hardly be faulted for their ambition and meticulousness. However, cross-referencing might have been helpful here in order to avoid overlap (for example, the lists of incunabula on pp. 50 and 91). Part Two examines renderings of De proprietatibus rerum in Anglo-Norman, Dutch, Occitan, Mantuan, and Castilian, the linguistic diversity here easily matched by the diversity of these contributions in terms of scope and methodology. In the two essays likely to be of greatest interest to French Studies readers, Brent A. Pitts compares the description of the ‘isles devers le northwest’ found in the thirteenth-century Anglo-Norman Livre des Regions to that found in other medieval encyclopaedic works, and the late Peter Ricketts draws upon the botanical lexis of Book 17 of De proprietatibus rerum to assess the contribution of the fourteenth-century Occitan translator. The essay by Antonia Rísquez (the only contribution in Castilian rather than French) provides a useful reminder of the need for further work on the dissemination and reception of De proprietatibus rerum in Latin. Notably absent from this ‘parcours à travers les aires linguistiques’ (pp. 11–12), however, is an essay focusing on John Trevisa’s rendering of De proprietatibus rerum into English. Preceding lists of manuscripts and early editions (but not, alas, a comprehensive index) is a mise au point by Bernard Ribémont. This edited volume, he concludes, provides ample justification for extending the age of the medieval encyclopaedia beyond the thirteenth century; with each translation and adaptation, and with the advent of print, De proprietatibus rerum was granted a new lease of life. Indeed, these essays are a prelude to the renewed scholarly interest in Bartholomew and his encyclopaedia that the appearance of complete critical editions of De proprietatibus rerum and of the Livre des propriétés des choses will surely foster. - [Abstract]

Language: French
DOI: 10.1093/fs/knw139


Christopher John Duffin

Alectorius: The Cock's Stone (Folklore, 2007; Series: Vol. 118, No. 3)

Alectorius is the name given to a stone derived from the gizzard of a cock or capon. In a folklore pedigree extending from the first century to the middle of the eighteenth century, it was recommended for slaking thirst, conferring invincibility, promoting desirable personal qualities and for treating a range of conditions. - [Abstract]

Language: English


Lynn Felicia Dufield-Landry

A Stylistic and Contextual Study of the Old English 'Physiologus' (Louisiana: University of Southwestern Louisiana, 1993) [Dissertation]

PhD dissertation at the University Of Southwestern Louisiana.

From a stylistic and contextual study of the Old English Physiologus the work emerges as an Old English poetic sampler, crafted from a synthesis of genre elements, biblical perspectives of Wisdom and Folly, patristic homiletic themes and style, and Germanic poetic conventions. Chapter One presents the twofold purpose of this study. On one hand, it attempts to distinguish the qualities unique to the Old English Physiologus in the context of its genre as well as to connect aspects of the work to Exeter Book themes and motifs. On the other hand, it seeks also to demonstrate the stylistic beauty of the poem as it reflects Wisdom as Christ and His Spirit. Chapter Two examines 'Panther' as a skillfully-designed fitt in two parts: the panther's tale and its significatio. Infused with images of Wisdom, the fitt celebrates typologically the panther as Christ. Through the central motif of the 'sweet odor,' the poet depicts Wisdom's plan for salvation for all time and hope for eternity. Chapter Three discusses 'Whale' as emblematic of the devil and as a perversion of the panther. Similar to Folly in Old Testament wisdom literature, the whale deceives man to his damnation. As in 'Panther,' a 'sweet odor' draws men, this time to destruction. As stylistically and contextually rich as 'Panther,' 'Whale,' through its two episodes and allegories about the seafarers and the fish, tropologically portrays the dangers of transitory sensory perceptions that result in self-deception. Chapter Four analyzes the fragment about the unspecified bird, the subject of the third fitt of the Physiologus. The chapter focuses on the homiletic ending as a fulfillment of God's covenant hope between his people and Himself, a hope defined as wisdom by Solomon and explained as Christ by St. Paul. The redemptive covenant depends on the salvific hope in 'Panther' to overcome the devil's temptations. Chapter Five highlights the drypoint drawings in the left margin of the opening to Physiologus. Discussed from the perspective of Physiologus themes, the two initial P's and the two hands in liturgical gestures present a graphic and enigmatic complement to the 'Panther' fitt. - [Abstract]

Language: English
PQDD: AAT9324602; OCLC: 29247771


Jean Dufournet

Autres notes sur le bestiaire de Villon (in Bernard Guidoux, Etudes de langue et de litterature francaises offertes a Andre Lanly, Nancy: University de Nancy, 1980, page 95-120) [Book article]

Language: French


Le Bestiaire de Villon (in Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed., Épopée Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Société Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 179-196) [Book article]

The bestiary as represented in the Testament of Francois Villon.

Language: French


Elements pour un bestiaire du Moyen Age (Revue des Langues Romanes, 98 (2), 1994) [Journal article]

Language: French
ISSN: 0223-3711


Liliane Dulac

Sur les fonctions du bestiaire dans quelques oeuvres didactiques de Christine de Pizan (in Jean-Claude MÃœHlethaler & Denis Billotte, ed., «Riens ne m'est seur que la chose incertaine»: Etudes sur l'art d'écrire au Moyen Age offertes à Eric Hicks par ses élèves, collègues, amies et amis, Genève: Editions Slatkine, 2001, page 181-194) [Book article]

Examine surtout le Livre de l'Avision Cristine, le Livre de la Mutacion de Fortune, le Livre des trois vertus, et le Livre de la Paix.

Language: French
ISBN: 2-05-101853-7


Louisa DeSaussure Duls

The Middle English Bestiary : a general study of the bestiaries, with emphasis upon the Middle English version, and a modernization of the Middle English text (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1943) [Dissertation]

Thesis (M.A.)--University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1943.


Language: English
OCLC: 37717601


Françoise Dumas

Le dragon autour de quelques pièces royales françaises (in Pierre Dehaye, ed., Le bestiaire: des monnaies des sceaux et des médailles, Paris, 1974, page 151-162) [Book article]

Language: French


D.N. Dumville

The Liber Floridus of Lambert of Saint-Omer and the Historia Brittonum (Bulletin of the Board of Celtic Studies, 26, 1974-76, page 103-122) [Journal article]

Language: English


Edwin Duncan

The Middle English Bestiary: Missing Link in the Evolution of the Alliterative Long Line? (Studia Neophilologica: A Journal of Germanic and Romance Languages and Literature, 64 (1), 1992, page 25-33) [Journal article]

Language: English
ISSN: 0039-3274


Thomas S. Duncan

The Weasel in Religion, Myth and Superstition (Washington University Studies, Humanistic Series, XII, 1924, page 33-66) [Journal article]

Language: English


Andrew Dunning

Alexander Neckam (Les Archives de littérature du Moyen Âge (ARLIMA), 2023)

A biography and extensive list of the works of Alexander Neckam, together with bibliographies and lists of manuscripts.

Language: French


Alexander Neckam's Manuscripts and the Augustinian Canons of Oxford and Cirencester (Toronto: Andrew Nelson Judd Dunning, 2016; Series: Centre for Medieval Studies institution: University of Toronto, degree: Doctor of Philosophy)

Alexander Neckam (Nequam, Neckham; also known as Alexander of St Albans; 1157–1217) was a teacher and Augustinian canon, leading St Mary's Abbey in Cirencester as abbot from 1213 to 1217, where he took part in royal and papal operations. His extensive writings are typically studied according to genre (grammatical treatises, commentaries, sermons, poetry) and assumed to be directed to two separate audiences, scholastic and monastic. This dissertation shows that Alexander's works form a more coherent whole by considering them within the historical circumstances of his career and the intellectual context of the Augustinian order. While past scholarship has assumed that Alexander only became a regular canon c.1197 at Cirencester, he more likely had already joined the Augustinians in Oxford, where he moved c.1190 and was associated with the Priory of St Frideswide (now Christ Church). The order's influence shaped Alexander's largest body of writings: his commentaries on the biblical wisdom books, often thought of as encyclopedias but better understood using his own label of meditationes. These reify the idea of meditation as a natural step in the progression of learning, as promoted by figures such as Hugh of St Victor. Alexander viewed this as a means of caring for souls, promoting female figures as universal models of holy living and seeking closer cooperation between religious orders. Alexander's fellow canon Walter de Melida directed a campaign to preserve and promulgate these writings. Walter's work is reconstructed here from cartularies, letters, and palaeographical analysis of manuscripts. His efforts were outwardly focused, using books to pursue closer relationships with Cirencester's neighbours. - [Abstract]

Language: English


N. H. Dupree

Interpretation of the Role of the Hoopoe in Afgan Folklore and Magic (Folklore, 85, 1974, page 173-193) [Journal article]

Language: English


Marie-France Dupuis, Sylvain Louis

Le bestiaire (Paris: P. Lebaud, 1988) [Book]

Translation and partial facsimile of a Latin bestiary: Bodleian Library, MS. Ashmole 1511. "Texte integral traduit en francais moderne par Marie-France Dupuis et Sylvain Louis; reproduction en facsimile des miniatures du manuscrit du Bestiaire Ashmole 1511 de la Bodleian Library d'Oxford; presentation et commentaires de Xenia Muratova et Daniel Poirion." Includes discussion of Morgan Library ms. M.81.

237 pp., illustrations (some color), bibliography.

Language: French
ISBN: 2-86594-040-3; LCCN: 89108095; LC: PA8275.B4F71988; DDC: 398.24/520


Klaus Duwel

Zum Stand der Reinhart Fuchs - Forschung (in Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed., Épopée Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Société Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 197-213) [Book article]

Language: German


Chet Van Duzer, Ilya Dines

The Only Mappamundi in a Bestiary Context: Cambridge, MS Fitzwilliam 254 (Taylor & Francis, Imago Mundi, 58.1, 2006, page 7 - 22) [Journal article]

The Mappa Mundi in Fitzwilliam Museum, MS 254 folio 1v, which dates from approximately 1220–1230, is the only one to appear in a medieval Latin bestiary. It does not fit well in any of the established classifications of mappae mundi. This paper will account for the map’s unusual features and also for its presence in a Third Family bestiary. The prominence of the islands in the map’s Outer Ocean suggests that the mapmaker wanted to represent the most distant parts of the world as objects of the Christian mission to bring the Gospel ‘to the ends of the earth’. Accounting for the presence of a mappamundi in Fitzwilliam 254 requires an examination of the composition of Third Family bestiaries.

Language: English
ISSN: 0308-5694; DOI: 10.1080/03085690500362256


Bobbi Dykema

Preaching the Book of Creation: Memory and Moralization in Medieval Bestiaries (Peregrinations: International Society for the Study of Pilgrimage Art, 2011)

In 1125, Bernard of Clairvaux was asked by the abbot William of St. Thierry to speak in defense of Cistercian simplicity over and against what both saw as the excesses of Cluniac monasticism. In his Apologia XII, Bernard rails against the ornamentation of the Cluniac cloister... While some scholars have interpreted Bernard‘s diatribe as a rant against grotesquerie and excessive ornamentation in religious architecture generally, it seems clear from the context that he was particularly concerned about the potential distractions and waste of money represented by such details in specifically monastic settings, and that he sought to draw attention to their presence in Cluniac houses as further evidence of the Cluniacs‘ worldliness. However, at the very moment of Bernard‘s writing, there were arising in his own Cistercian order, as well as in other monastic establishments, any number of bizarre and monstrous creatures, lurking in the pages of illuminated manuscript books. The books in question were bestiaries, and one of their purposes, interestingly, in a contemplative order, was to facilitate the creation of sermons memorable for both preacher and audience. - [Author]

Language: English


Adolf Ebert

Der angelsächsische Physiologus (Anglia: journal of English philology, 6, 1883, page 241-247) [Journal article]

The skeleton of an Anglo-Saxon Physiologus that has been preserved to us has not yet been examined in more detail. And yet it invites us to ask many questions, the answers to which will also be important for the history of Physiologus in general, which is still to be written! The first question is: Are we dealing with individual fragments of an Anglo-Saxon Physiologus, or with a skeleton, i.e. Do the three pieces (panther, whale, bird) belong together in the same order and do they therefore form a single fragment? How easy it is to see from the beginning of the first and therefore already noticed by others? This Physiologus begins with the Panther, and since there are no gaps between the second and third parts in the single manuscript, so there is no reason to assume that these two pieces do not follow one another after the first. This will also be fully confirmed in the following investigation. - [Author]

Language: German


T. R. Eckenrode

Vincent of Beauvais: A Study in the Construction of a Didactic View of History (The Historian, 1984; Series: Vol. 46, No. 3)

History had many obligations toward society and one of the most important is that of reminding people about the victories and glories as well! as the mistakes and absurdities which humanity has brought about over the centuries. Ideally, we will learn to minimize repeating our past stupidities; one way of doing this is to resurrect occasionally those movements, events, or persons that exemplified us at our best. One exceptional example which can serve as such an optimistic reminder ts the thirteenth-century Dominican historian, Vincent de Beauvais, whose three-part Speculum Majus still stands as a monument to humanity’s sense of dedication and industry. - [Author]

Language: English


Umberto Eco, Chiara Frugoni

A Bestiary in Stone (FMR: the magazine of Franco Maria Ricci, 92:17, 1998, page 17-36) [Journal article]

"Dignified by the fine sounding Greek term "Zoophorus", a synthesis of the Animal Kingdom, to which a medieval fondness for story telling added sirens, griffins and unicorns, runs like a necklace around the octagonal walls of Parma Baptistery: it represents Nature--bestial and sinful--at a stop on the threshold of the Sacred, the pagan Forest that believers must cross before being received into the Church and cleansed with redeeming water."

Photography by Daniele Broia and Floriano Finzi.

Language: English
ISSN: 0747-6388; OCLC: 10764669


From Marco Polo to Leibniz: Stories of Intercultural Misunderstanding (The Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America, 1996) [Journal article]

A lecture presented by Umberto Eco on December 10, 1996. Includes several references to the Bestiary.

"This evening I shall ... deal with some misunderstandings that took place when people were unable to understand that different cultures have different languages and world-visions. The fact that - by serendipity - also those mistakes provided some new discoveries only means ... that even errors can produce interesting side-effects. ... The whole of the medieval tradition convinced Europeans that there existed unicorns, that is, animals that looked as gentle and slender as white horses, with a horn on their nose. ... When Marco Polo traveled to China, he was obviously looking for unicorns. ... And the truth was that the unicorns he saw were very different from those represented by a millinery tradition. ...They were not white, but black. ... Their horn was not white but black, their tongue was thorny, their head looked as that of a wild boar. As a matter of fact what Marco Polo saw were rhinoceroses." - Eco

Language: English


Joseph Edkins

Ancient Symbolism Among the Chinese (London: Trubner & Co., 1889) [Book]

Language: English


A. S. G. Edwards

The Text of John Trevisa's Translation of Bartholomaeus Anglicus' De Proprietatibus Rerum (Text, 2003; Series: Volume 15)

A review and commentary on the text of John Trevisa's translation of De proprietatibus rerum of Bartholomaeus Anglicus, with notes on the manuscripts used and some problems with the edition.

Language: English


Guilio Einaudi, ed

Bestiari Medievali (Parma, Italy: Patriche editrice, 1987) [Book]

Text entirely in Italian and French. Based primarily on four bestiaries: The Latin Physiologus, the Bestiary of Phillippe de Thaon, the Bestiary of Gervaise, and the Bestiary of Love of Richard de Fournival.

644 pages, Color reproductions of images

Language: Italian


Jacques Elfass, ed., Bernard Ribémont, ed.

La réception d’Isidore de Séville durant le Moyen Âge tardif (XIIe-XVe s.) (Cahiers de recherches médiévales et humanistes, 2008; Series: 16)

The reception of Isidore of Seville during the late middle ages (12th to 15th centuries).

We have chosen here to focus, if not on a particular aspect of reception medieval of Isidore – on the contrary, we tried to study it in a way as as diverse as possible – at least for a given period, from the 12th to the 15th century. We started, in fact, from two working hypotheses: 1. the influence of Isidore continued to be important in the late Middle Ages; 2. the image of Isidore in this Middle Ages was undoubtedly somewhat different from that of the Carolingian period. - [Editors]

Language: French
2273-0893; DOI: 10.4000/crm.10402


Juan Juliía Elías

Los bestiarios (Tucumán, Argentina: Universidad Nacional de Tucumán, 2000; Series: Ediciones del Rectorado) [Book]

145 pp., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Spanish
ISBN: 950-554-229-1; LC: PN56.A64


Thomas J. Elliott

A medieval bestiary (Boston: Godine, 1971, 1975) [Book]

Verse translation into modern English based on the standard Middle English text, The Bestiary: BL Arundel 292, in Selections from early Middle English, 1130-1250, edited by J. Hall, 1920. Translated & introduced by T. J. Elliott. With wood engravings by Gillian Tyler.

Language: English
LCCN: 77143383; LC: PR1754.E4; DDC: 398.24/52; NLM: WZ290M489m1971


Paul Eluard, Roger Chastel

Le bestiaire (Paris: Maeght editeur, 1948) [Book]

"Il a ete tire de cet ouvrage 196 exemplaires ... Exemplaire no. 166." Eaux-fortes originales de Roger Chastel.

51 leaves, 45 leaves of plates.

Language: French
DDC: 841.91; OCLC: 8501339


O. J. Emory

Hall's Edition of the Middle English Bestiary (Modern Language Notes, 72:4 (April), 1957, page 241-242) [Journal article]

Emory points out several errors in J. Hall's transcription of the Middle English Bestiary (British Library Arundel MS 292) published in Selections from Early Middle English (Oxford, 1920), and provides corrections.

Language: English


J. Engels

Thomas Cantimpratensis redivivus (Vivarium, 12, 1974, page 124-132) [Journal article]

Language: English



S. P. N. Epiphanii, Episcopi Constantiæ Cypri, ad Physiologum (in Jacques-Paul Migne, ed., Patrologia Cursus Completus, Series Graeca, volume 43, Paris, 1864, page columns 517-534) [Book article]

The Greek Physiologus attributed to Saint Epiphanius, Bishop of Cyprus (c. 310-403 CE). Greek and Latin in alternating columns. It is highly unlikely that Epiphanius had anything to do with this text. The text is identical to that edited by Consalus Ponce de Leon in 1588.

Language: Latin


Steven A. Epstein

The Medieval Discovery of Nature (Cambridge University Press, 2012)

This book examines the relationship between humans and nature that evolved in medieval Europe over the course of a millennium. From the beginning, people lived in nature and discovered things about it. Ancient societies bequeathed to the Middle Ages both the Bible and a pagan conception of natural history. These conflicting legacies shaped medieval European ideas about the natural order and what economic, moral, and biological lessons it might teach. This book analyzes five themes found in medieval views of nature – grafting, breeding mules, original sin, property rights, and disaster – to understand what some medieval people found in nature and what their assumptions and beliefs kept them from seeing. - [Abstract]

Language: English


Alain Erlande-Brandenburg

The Lady and the Unicorn - La Dame a la Licorne - a study (Editions de la Reunion des Musees Nationaux, 1973) [Book]

Many illustrations in colour and black and white. A study of the medieval tapestry exibited at the Cluny Museum.

78 pp.

Language: English


Adolf Erman

Bruchstûcke des koptischen Physiologus (Leipzig: J. C. Hinrichs Sche Buchhandlung, 1895; Series: Zeitschrift für ägyptische Sprache und Altertumskunde. 33)

Fragments of the Coptic Physiologus.

It was assumed from the outset that the Physiologus, the popular book beloved in all Christian literature, would also have been present in Coptic literature. The first trace of its existence was found by Hommel, who pointed out in his edition of the Ethiopian Physiologus that the Scala of Samannûdi was the "unicorn", a word that belongs to the Physiologus literature... This second story of [this] fragment already makes it probable. that there were Physiologus texts in Coptic that deviated greatly from the usual versions. How far this transformation ultimately went is shown by the strange text that I am publishing below. It is written on two sheets of paper and is. with a larger collection: Greek, Coptic and Arabic papyrus... [Author]

Language: German


Josep Perarnau Espelt

La La traducció castellana del Llibre de meravelles de Ramon Llull (Arxiu de Textos Catalans Antics, 4, 1985, page 7-60) [Journal article]

Language: Catalan


Carolin Esser-Miles

"King of the Children of Pride:" Symbolism, Physicality, and the Old English Whale (Tempe, Arizona: ACMRS, 2014; Series: The Maritime World of the Anglo-Saxons)

The chapter traces the misconception of the malevolent whale to a conflation of concepts and confusion of loanwords within Anglo-Saxon England, where the Old English poetic version of the Physiologus tradition, the Exeter Book 'The Whale', endows the animal with evil intent for the first time. The cultural semantic analysis explores the natural historical and mythological roots for the Cetus and Balenus whale which are ambiguously mapped onto the Old English pair 'hwael' and 'hron'. The study also offers possible real explanations for two of the more outrageous stories that find their way into later bestiaries. - [Abstract]

Language: English


E. P. Evans

Animal Symbolism in Ecclesiastical Architecture (London: W. Heinmann, 1896) [Book]

A wide-ranging study of animal symbolism that does not confine itself to church architecture. The book mostly focuses on the Middle Ages, with some content relating to Antiquity and the Renaissance. The Physiologus is examined extensively, other sources less so. Despite the the terms "ecclesiastical architecture" in the book's title, the main focus is on Christian symbology in its various forms, not just that of animals or that represented in architecture. The author also discusses the use of animal images in satire, as, for example, in the fox depicted as a corrupt cleric. While Evans often shows an all too common nineteenth century scorn for the "unscientific" writers of the Middle Ages, and regularly wanders far from his stated topic, this does not greatly detract from the usefulness of the work.

Reprinted in 1969 by Gale Research Company, Detroit.

375 pp., bibliography, index, 78 illustrations.

Language: English
LCCN: 68-18023


The Criminal Prosecution and Capital Punishment of Animals: The Lost History of Europe's Animal Trials (London: Faber and Faber, 1987) [Book]

The author makes a serious effort to explore the legal and theological implications of medieval criminal and civil actions against animals e.g. certainly they may be placed under a formal curse but can they really be excommunicated?, is a werewolf an animal?, etc.

384 pages.

Originally published by Dutton and Company, 1906.

Language: English


Joan Evans

Joan Evans, ed., Mary S.Serjeantson, ed.

English Medieval Lapidaries (London: Early English Text Society / Oxford University Press, 1960, 1999; Series: Original Series 190) [Book]

218 pp.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-85991-925-0


Oliver Evans

Selections from the Bestiary of Leonardo Da Vinci (The Journal of American Folklore, 64:254 (Oct. - Dec), 1951, page 393-396) [Journal article]

It is not commonly known that Leonardo Da Vinci amused himself in his old age by composing a bestiary; the work has never been translated into English, and is almost unknown even in Italy. - [Author]

Evans provides an English translation of part of Leonardo's bestiary, which consists of short accounts of beast attributes under such titles as "Treachery", "Truth", "Chastity" and "Anger", relating the beast's character to the named virtue or vice.

Language: English


Ludmilla. Evdokimova

Le "Bestiaire d’amour” et ses mises en vers: la prose et la poésie, l’allégorie didactique et l’allégorie courtoise (Reinardus: Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, Volume 13, Issue 1, 2000, page 67-78) [Journal article]

The “Bestiary of Love” and its Verses: Prose and Poetry, Didactic Allegory and Courtly Allegory.

It seems that Richard de Fournival proves that didactic and bookish speech, on the one hand, and courtly song, on the other, are capable of serving a purpose. But as much as he imitates the style of the “Bestiary” in prose, it is obvious that he violates its content. Behind each secular and courteous allegory, which he adds to the descriptions of animals, we distinguish the Christian allegory. In the “Bestiaire d’amour”, the allegories indeed consist of two planes. To say that these two planes are different is an understatement; often they deny themselves. Thus, the love poet tries to convince the lady of his love, and actually proves to her that it is dangerous to her. By persuading the lady to yield to his prayers, he shows her that love is a sin and that it distances the Christian from the way of salvation. He says that verse and prose can be substituted, and he confesses his secret thought: to return to the sin of poetry. No trace of these ideas can be found in the “Bestiaire d’amour rimé”. The resemblance between the style of this "dittié" and the genre of the bestiary is attenuated. To overcome the contradictions between the meaning of courtly allegory and the meaning of Christian allegory, the poet introduces comparisons of the lover to the symbols of Christ or to a man who experienced spiritual renewal: the phoenix, the eagle, the deer. In the “Bestiary of rhymed love” the didactic world and the courtly world do not contradict each other, but they are in harmony. - [Abstract]

Language: French
0925-4757; DOI: 10.1075/rein.13.06evd


Deux traductions du Physiologus: Le Sens allégorique de la nature et le sens allégorique de la Bible (Reinardus: Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 11, 1998, page 53-66) [Journal article]

Pierre de Beauvais' French language translation (Le Bestiaire) of the Latin Physiologus compared to Guillaume le Clerc.

Language: French


La disposition des lettrines dans le 'Bestiaire' de Pierre de Beauvais et dans le 'Bestiaire' de Guillaume Ie Clerc. La signification de la lettrine et la perception d'une œuvre (Le Moyen Français, 2005; Series: Volume 55-56)

This article takes its source in a part of my book devoted to the arrangement of initials in manuscripts of works in prose and verse, similar in content: novels, chronicles, lives of saints and, in particular, bestiaries. - [Author]

Compares the Bestiaire of Pierre de Beauvais and Guillaume le Clerc.

Language: French
2034-6492; DOI: 10.1484/J.LMFR.2.303055


Disposition des lettrines dans les manuscrits du Bestiare d'amour: des lectures possibles de l'oeuvre (Le Moyen Age: Revue d'histoire et de philologie, 102:3-4 (part 1); 103:1 (part 2), 1996, page 465-478; 83-115) [Journal article]

Il a ete demontre plus d'une fois qu'il est indispensable d'accorder une attention speciale a la division de l'oeuvre medievale par les lettrines. En effet, la lettrine represente le moyen le plus repandu de diviser le texte medieval en unites signifiantes et, donc lui accorder une structure et un sens. Dans une oeuvre qui, comme le Bestiaire d'amour de Richard de Fournival, donne matiere a plusieurs interpretations, cette fonction des lettrines apparait a l'evidence: la disposition des lettrines, en variant d'un manuscrit a l'autre, accetue les differentes de percevoir le sens de l'oeuvre. - [Author]

Part 2 consists mostly of tables comparing manuscripts.

Language: French


Irène Fabry-Tehranchi, ed., Anna Russakoff, ed.

L'Humain et l’Animal dans la France médiévale (XIIe-XVe s.) (Brill, 2014)

This is the first volume that explores the changing relationships between humans and animals, both real and fantastic, in medieval France, from a completely interdisciplinary perspective. The authors examine the way the human-animal rapport was imagined, defined and remodeled in thought, culture and artistic production. The distinction between human and animal, fundamental in the Bible and in Ancient philosophy, was challenged throughout the course of the 12th century. This phenomenon can be traced in changes in the terminology used to designate animals, in their representations in the arts and literature, and in the reworking of fundamental texts such as the Physiologus and the bestiaries. The borders between the human and the animal world, based on criteria such as linguistic ability, the capacity to laugh and even legal responsibility, evolved and were fundamentally reconsidered between the 12th and the 15th century. - [Publisher]

Language: French


Bruno Faidutti

Images et connaissance de la licorne (Fin du Moyen-Age - XIXeme siecle) (Paris: Bruno Faidutti, 1996) [Dissertation]

"These de doctorat de l'universite Paris XII (Sciences litteraires et humaines) presentee par Bruno Faidutti, novembre 1996".

An extensive look at the medieval concept of the unicorn, with many illustrations.

Contents: Connaissance d'une licorne imaginee; La legende de la licorne; Les silhouettes de la licorne; L'habitat naturel de la licorne; La corne de licorne, chose rare et precieuse; Quelques points de vue au tournant des XVIeme et XVIIeme siecles; Andre Thevet, cosmographe, les licornes et les unicornes; Ambroise Pare, pourfendeur de licornes; Laurent Catelan, apothicaire; La licorne face a la science; La licorne existe-t-elle?; La licorne et le rhinoceros; La bate prodigue.


Language: French


Licornes, Métamorphoses d’une créature millénaire (Ynnis Éditions, 2022)

Omnipresent in the cultures of the imagination, the unicorn is represented in many ways over the ages, depending on the culture, and in literary, audiovisual or playful works. Sometimes we almost forget that it is an imaginary being... But in fact, where does this animal come from? What mixture of antelope and rhinoceros, horse and goat, East and West, fable and zoology gave shape to this mythical creature? Meet her, from Antiquity to our modern era, follow her from one continent to another, and discover how this protean figure gradually settled into our world! Beyond famous representations and preconceived ideas, follow in the footsteps of a fabulous animal, now ready to reveal all its secrets to you! - [Blurb]

Language: French


Les légendes de la licorne (Bruno Faidutti, 2023)

It has been almost twenty-five years since, in 1996, I defended my history thesis, Images and knowledge of the unicorn from the end of the Middle Ages to the 19th century. I then quite quickly abandoned any idea of ??making a real career as a historian, but I kept from this interlude a taste for old papers and somewhat marginal themes – in the literal sense of the term, because, in the manuscripts medieval, the unicorn is often in the margins. ... A blog for everything that couldn't fit in my book on unicorns, a few more chapters, a few passages that I deleted to make room, and a lot of images because I had to choose.

Language: French


Fairmont State University

Reynard's Ramblings (Fairmont, WV: Fairmont State University, 2013)

A useful list of Reynard the Fox manuscripts, texts and other resources.

"We students in English 4400 at Fairmont State University read the tales of Reynard for the first time in January of 2010. We wanted to do more research on Reynard, but felt frustrated because information on him was so widely scattered, especially on the internet. We then decided to put together a website that would help other researchers by categorizing existing Reynard scholarship and artistic treatments."

Language: English


Carl Fant

L'image du monde: poème inédit du milieu du XIIIe siècle, étudié dans ses diverses rédactions françaises d'après les manuscrits des bibliothèques de Paris et de Stockholm (Berling, 1886; Series: Issue 3 of Uppsala universitets Årsskrift)

A study of the Image du monde by Gossuin de Metz, with notes on and comparisons between the manuscripts, and a discussion of the history, content and structure of the various redactions of the text.

Language: French


Dora Faraci

Il Bestiario medio inglese (ms Arundel 292 della British Library) (L'Aquila: Japadre, 1990; Series: Summa promiscua 5) [Book]

Transcription and Italian translation of the Middle English manuscript Arundel 292. Includes references to Morgan ms. M. 81, M. 397, and M. 890.

263 p., 26 p. of plates, color illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Italian
ISBN: 88-7006-258-9; LCCN: 93142212; LC: PR1836.A641990; DDC: 821/.05/093620; OCLC: 28586790


The Bestiary and its sources: some examples (Reinardus: Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 7, 1994, page 31-43) [Journal article]

Concludes that a bestiary work should be considered as the outcome of a mixing of sources and ideas derived from various texts which are not always identifiable. With particular reference to MSS. Cambridge, Corpus Christi College, MS 448, and Oxford, Bodleian Library,

Language: English


The Gleða Chapter in the Old Icelandic Physiologus (in Opuscula, IX, Copenhagen: Reitzel: Bibliotheca Arnamagnaeana, 1991, page 108-126) [Book article]

Language: English
ISBN: 87-7421-685-6


Navagatio Sancti Brendani and its Relationship with Physiologus (Romanobarbarica, 11, 1991, page 149-173) [Journal article]

Discusses the Christian iconography of the whale-island in the legend of S. Brendan. Identifies sources in Physiologus, medieval bestiaries, and related manuscripts, drawing upon both textual descriptions and illuminations, 12th-14th centuries.

Language: English


Pour une étude plus large de la récéption mediévale des bestiaire (in Baudouin Van den Abeele, ed., Bestiaires médiévaux. Nouvelles perspectives sur les manuscrits et les traditions textuelles, Louvain-la-Neuve: Institut d’études médiévales, 2005, page 111-125) [Book article]

Language: French


Sources and cultural background. The example of the Old English Phoenix (Rivista di cultura classica e medioevale, 42:2, 2000, page 225-239) [Journal article]

Examines points of similarity between this work and the OE bestiary Physiologus, discussing the treatment of allegory and symbol in the culture contemporary to these two works.

Language: English


Edmond Faral

La Queue de poisson des sirènes (Romania, LXXIV, 1953, page 433-506) [Journal article]

Language: French


Jack Farley

The Misericords of Gloucester Cathedral (Gloucester: The King's School, 1981) [Book]

Includes some animal images on misericords. The text is confined to the introduction and to captions for the photographs.

2 p. text, 58 p. black & white photographs.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-9507396-0-X; LC: NK9744.65F3


Alessandro Faro

The Christian vision of animals in the Middle Ages: examples of Christological symbolism (Academia)

This article aims to highlight how medieval zoology is far from any scientific rigour that modern science requires but it is perfectly framed and explained within the profoundly symbolic world view in the Middles Ages, through an illustrative but notexhaustive overview of animals present in medieval bestiaries that show a positive or negative correlation with the figure of Christ. - [Abstract]

Language: English


Claude Faucheux

Remarques sur le bestiaire du Rosarius et sur son auteur (in XIV Congresso internazionale di linguistica e filologia romanza: Atti, V. Naples aprile 1974, Amsterdam: Macchiaroli Benjamins, 1981, page 433-443) [Book article]

Language: French


Jean-Claude Faucon

La répresentation de l'animal par Marco Polo (Médiévales: langue, textes, histoire (Paris), 32, 1997, page 97-117) [Journal article]

Focuses on the reality of Polo's descriptions as compared with the moral symbolism of Christian bestiaries.

Language: French


Robert Favreau

Le thème iconographique du lion dans les inscriptions médiévales (Comptes rendus des seances de l'annee... - Academie des inscriptions et belles-lettres, 3, 1991, page 613-636) [Journal article]

Pour eclairer les valeurs diverses du lion dans les representations medievales et nous assurer des intentions de l'auteur, les inscriptions qui les accompagnent souvent sont precieuses. Ses representations font reference soit a l'Ancien Testament, - image negative avec Samson, David et Daniel - soit au Christ ressuscite; il revat une valeur positive inspiree du Physiologus, base des bestiaires medievaux. Il peut avoir une fonction purement decorative ou un sens christologique, au premier rang celui de la Resurrection, comme le confirment le plus souvent les inscriptions.

Language: French
ISSN: 0065-0536


Gisela Febel, ed., Georg Maag, ed.

Bestiarien im Spannungsfeld zwischen Mittelalter und Moderne (Tübingen: G. Narr Verlag, 1997) [Book]

German and French.

213 p., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: German
ISBN: 3-8233-5176-1; LCCN: 98-126603; LC: PN56.A64B471997; DDC: 809/.9336221; OCLC: 47101048


Johanna Feenstra

The Ambivalent Cat in Religious Orders (Netherlands: Academic Cat Lady blog, 2017)

...most evidence for the prevalence of pet keeping by members of religious orders comes from the criticism of the practice. The main argument put forward by religious authorities against keeping cats in enclosed institutional spaces was that they had no place in such a sacred environment, especially with such a versatile nature. It was argued that domesticated animals had no functional role, and had a negative effect on both the owner and the community by distracting them from religious duties and disrupting contemplative life. For example, the monastic rule (1082-83) Liber confortatorius by Goscelin condemned the practice of keeping pets: “Take neither a cat nor birds nor a small animal or any other senseless creature as pet to be with you. Be withdrawn and alone with God”.7 Evidently, too great a devotion to one’s companion animal could be severely criticized for religious and moralizing reasons. It would steer the human being away from God and the cat from its proper duties. Yet, the pet-keeping secular clergy could more easily ignore such prohibitions as they were not bound by institutional rules. - [Author]

This text is based on a presentation at the International Medieval Congress 2017 on the 4th of July 2017 in Leeds, Session 511: Reading Puss in Books.

Language: English


The Cat in the Medieval Bestiary (Parts 1 & 2) (Netherlands: Acedemic Cat Lady blog, 2019)

In medieval bestiaries, cats were usually depicted chasing rodents. In fact, the bestiary entry on the cat always precedes mus, the mouse, and is often associated and followed by another mouse catcher, called mustela, the weasel. Emphasis is placed on the cat’s predatory skills and sharp eyesight. ... Also curious is that bestiaries are most often studied from a textual point of view. As a result, little attention has been paid to illustrations in bestiaries. I argue that illustrations, if present, are an integral part of the text. - [Author]

Language: English


Halloween: Black Cats and Witches in Medieval Times (Netherlands: Academic Cat Lady blog, 2017)

In the Middle Ages, the cat had many negative connotations. It was commonly associated with symbolic connotations of evil, death, the devil, witchcraft, and heresy. The cat was an easy target for such accusations, because it is a highly ambiguous and complex animal. In a way, the cat resides in two realms at the same time : wild and domestic. Its pagan and folk status, combined with its nocturnal character, allowed the cat to be a logical scapegoat for medieval moralists. - [Author]

Language: English


Puss in Books: Cats in Medieval Manuscripts (Parts 1 & 2) (Netherlands: Academic Cat Lady blog, 2017)

[Part 1] In the Middle Ages, several musical instruments were used by minstrels, waits, troubadours, or anyone who fancied playing a tune. Medieval musical instruments could be organized in three categories: string, wind, and percussion. The term bas referred to soft instruments such as the rebec, lute, and other bowed or plucked string instruments. The term haut referred to louder instruments. For example, the tabor, sackbut, and pipe. [Part 2] This miniature in a French copy of Reynard the Fox, shows the fox racing after a cat on horseback. Reynard the Fox is a trickster character in medieval literature. The cat is Tybert, also known as the Prince of Cats. In this specific scene it seems that Tybert claims victory over Reynard. The cat turns his head and sticks out his tongue at the fox in mockery. - [Author]

Language: English


Hugh Feiss, Ronald E. Pepin

Birds in Beinecke MS 189 (Yale University Library Gazette, 68:3-4, 1994, page 110-115) [Journal article]

Argues that 12c. people were starting to look upon nature in a new way. A copy of Hugh de Fouilloy's Aviarum (MS. New Haven, Yale University Beinecke Library, Marston MS 189) contains illustrations of birds drawn by someone who knew them from personal observation.

Language: English


Stefan Fellner

Compendium der Naturwissenschaften an der Schule zu Fulda im IX. Jahrhundert (Berlin: T. Grieben, 1879; Series: Landmarks of science.; Monographs) [Book]

"Rhabans ... De universo ... diente als Vorlage fur diese Schrift".

24l p., bibliography.

Language: German
OCLC: 32073378


Kristen M. Figg

Pets in the Middle Ages: Evidence from Encyclopedias and Dictionaries (Enarratio: Publications of the Medieval Association of the Midwest, 2013; Series: Volume 18)

When trying to gather reliable information about animals as pets in the Middle Ages, modern scholars immediately come up against a major cultural barrier. As Klaus Weimann points out in his preface to the volume Middle English Animal Literature, medieval people “lived … in close contact with several species of animals both wild and domestic,” but because they believed in a hierarchical scheme of existence with animals on a parallel plane below humans, they tended to think about animals as if they were a counterpart to human society. Thus they wrote about them most often in ways meant to instruct, describing them in bestiaries, fables, or tales like the Roman de Renart with a moralizing intent, rather than conveying information as if they had interest in the animals themselves. While we are able to find images in art and references in hagiography and narrative literature to many animals who lived in close proximity with their owners and whose relations with humans suggest that they had special status, the examples tend towards the exceptional or even the symbolic, so that we are never sure that we are seeing a dependable representation of how people in general thought about animals that we, today, consider to be “pets.” Indeed, the lack of a word for pets, which extended well into the modern period, suggests that we may be taking for granted a lexical domain that did not exist, as such, in the Middle Ages. Thus, it is instructive to see what we can find out from looking directly at early dictionaries, word histories, and medieval encyclopedic works, where animals are discussed in ways that might more closely suggest their roles in relation to human society in the High to Late Middle Ages. - [Author]

Language: English


Adam Fijalkowski

The Arabic Authors in the Works of Vincent of Beauvais (Berlin, New York: De Gruyter, 2006; Series: Wissen über Grenzen: Arabisches Wissen und lateinisches Mittelalter)

Vincent de Beauvais (ca. 1194-1264), a Dominican friar of mid-thirteenth-century France (Beauvais, Paris, Royaumont), connected with the milieu of Louisthe Saint, was one of the most famous compilers and encyclopedists of thirteenth-century Western Europe. His enormous 'Speculum maius‘, compiled and revised several times between 1240 and 1260, constitutes the most voluminous summary of knowledge produced in the Middle Ages. In this 'mirror‘ he also quoted Latin translations of the Arabic authors’ works some thousand times. The 'Speculum maius‘ (the final version consisted of 'Speculum naturale‘, 'Speculum doctrinale‘ and 'Speculum historiale‘) of Vincent of Beauvais is one example of the reception of Arabic authors in the field of arts and sciences:primarily of medicine, astronomy, alchemy, biology, and mineralogy, as well asin the classification of knowledge. - [Author]

Language: English
DOI: 10.1515/9783110194319.483


Jonathan Fisher

Scripture Animals: A Natural History of Animals Named in the Bible (Portland: William Hyde, 1834) [Book]

"This nineteenth-century 'bestiary' treats all the living creatures named in the Bible. ... Working from the Hebrew and Greek, Fisher compiled all the Biblical references..." - cover copy

For each animal, Fisher gives references to Bible book, chapter and verse, as well as some commentary.

Reprinted by: Weathervane Books, New York, 1972 (ISBN is for this edition).

347 pp., illustrations by the author.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-517-14590-1; LCCN: 72-79152


Gil Fishhof

Centaurs in Contexts: The Eastern Lintel of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Crusading Spirituality, Agency and Society in the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem (Mediaevistik, 2019; Series: Volume 32, Number 1)

Taking the eastern lintel of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre as its primary focus, the present study examines the way by which the image of the centaur functioned in a specific historical context – that of the Crusades – to help the Christians define the character of their enemy; and in so doing also define their own concepts of society and order. In addition, society in the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem was complex, presenting multilayered relations between the ruling Franks, the various indigenous Eastern Christian communities, and the Muslim population. Among the Latins themselves power structures were also multifaceted, balancing, to name just a few, between the King, the Patriarch, and the various Lords. As this paper would like to contend, the imagery of the eastern lintel was designed to manifest the different concerns of these groups and agents, enabling alternative readings by each of them according to their particular perspectives. - [Abstract]

DOI: 10.3726/med.2019.01.07


Mary C. Fitzpatrick

De ave phoenice (University of Pennsylvania, 1933) [Dissertation]

The treatise on the phoenix by Lactantius. Published Ph.D. dissertation, University of Pennsylvania.

Language: English


Fitzwilliam Museum

Fitzwilliam Museum Bestiary MS 254 (Fitzwilliam Museum, 2004) [Web page]

Part of an online exhibition at the Museum, these pages include a sample leaf from the manuscript and some descriptive text.

Language: English


J. F. Flinn

L'Iconographie du Roman de Renart (in Aspects of the Medieval Animal Epic, Louvain: Leuven University Press, 1975, page 257-264) [Book article]

"Dans l'introduction de son album consacre aux romans arthuriens, Arthurian Legends in Medieval Art, R. S. Loomis avait souligne l'importance dans l'etude de la litterature medievale de rapprocher cette litterature des scenes qu'elle avait inspirees aux artistes, aux peintres et aux sculpteurs du Moyen Age. Cette comparaison peut en effet apporter des renseignements precieux sur l'oeuvre litteraire, sur ses origines, la date de composition, sa popularite et sa signification pour les gens de l'epoque. Plus recemment le magnifique ouvrage de Madame Lejeune et de Monsieur Stiennon nous a revele la richesse de l'iconographie de la Chanson de Roland. Le Docteur Varty nous a montre l'importance de l'iconographie de Renart en Angleterre, d'abord il y a quelques annees dans son bel album, et aujourd'hui dans sa communication. Dans d'autres pays d'Europe l'iconographie demontre l'interat qu'on portait pendant des siecles, non seulement au Roman de Renart francais, mais aussi a ses continuations et aux differentes versions dans d'autres langues. On trouve des exemples de cette iconographie en France, en Belgique, aux Pays-Bas, en Allemagne, en Suisse, en Italie et en Espagne. Des textes du Moyen Age confirment bien l'engouement des gens de l'epoque pour les reproductions de Renart et de ses aventures. Dans la Branche XIII du Roman de Renart, Renart et les peaux de goupils, figure la description de la chambre d'un riche chatelain, ou etait sculpte, a cote de " toutes les bates et tous les oiseaux du monde", la tres celebre Procession de Renart de la Branche XVII. La Branche XIII appartient au groupe des branches posterieures, qui datent de la premiere moitie du XIIIe siecle; La Mort et la Procession de Renart avait, en effet, inspire les peintres et les sculpteurs jusqu'a la fin du Moyen Age." - Flinn

Language: French


Littérature bourgeoise et le Roman de Renart (in Aspects of the Medieval Animal Epic, Louvain: Leuvan University Press, 1975, page 11-24) [Book article]

"Cette rapide chronologie nous rappelle que la branche la plus ancienne du Roman de Renart etait contemporaine d'un bonne partie de la litterature courtoise et epique. ... c'est Joseph Bedier, dans Les Fabliaux, paru en 1893, qui semble le premier avoir insiste sur l'existence d'une litterature specifiquement bourgeoise... Ce concept d'une litterature bourgeoise qui serait nee en mame temps qu'une classe vraiment bourgeoise, a connu un succes incontestable." - Flinn

Language: French


Le Roman de Renart dans la Littérature Française et les Littératures Étrangèrs au Moyen Âge (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1963) [Book]

Language: French


Nona C. Flores, ed.

Animals in the Middle Ages: A Book of Essays (New York: Garland Publishing, Inc., 1996; Series: Garland Medieval Casebooks 13) [Book]

The essays in this collection focus on animals not as literal, living organisms - food, prey, possessions, or companions to man - but as symbols, ideas, or images during the Middle Ages. ... For the opening section, I have selected essays that demonstrate how animal images in medieval art and literature were used as ... books or pictures to teach man some truth about his cosmos... the hermeneutic use of animal imagery during the Middle Ages is due primarily to the Physiologus and the bestiaries. Thus, studies examining these works are a necessary part of this collection. ... The essays in [the] final section all deal with composite creatures, especially combined animal-human forms." - [Introduction]

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8153-1315-2; LCCN: 95-30586; LC: GR705.A541996; DDC: 398.2/094/04520


'Effigies amicitiae...veritas inimicitiae': Antifeminism in the Iconography of the Woman-Headed Serpent in Medieval and Renaissance Art and Literature (in Nona C. Flores, ed., Animals in the Middle Ages: A Book of Essays, New York: Garland Publishing, Inc., 1996, page 167-195) [Book article]

"In this essay I will examine the use of the Edenic dracontopede in a small number of the many extant examples available in medieval and Renaissance art and literature. My interest is an iconographic one: I have tried to elicit the significance of an image that is largely unsupported by authority but that was developed so creatively by artists and writers for over 400 years. I have further limited my focus to the dracontopede of Genesis 3 and analogous biform creatures associated with this figure. Thus I do not discuss the woman-serpents of folklore and romance; though fascinating, these come from a tradition separate from Christian patristics. Finally, I have chosen examples in which the depiction of the woman-headed snake underlines the sins ascribed to Eve at the fall -- primarily lust, pride, and fraud -- all of which provided a basis for centuries of antifeminist moralizing." - Flores

Language: English


Elephants (in John Block Friedman & Kristen Mossler Figg, ed., Trade, Travel and Exploration in the Middle Ages: An Encyclopedia, New York: Garland Press, 2000, page 175-178) [Book article]

Language: English


The Mirror of nature distorted: the medieval artist's dilemma in depicting animals (in Joyce E. Salisbury, ed., The Medieval World of Nature: A Book of Essays, New York: Garland, 1993, page 3-45) [Book article]

Argues that the passion for drawing from nature is tempered by pre-existing artistic conceptions.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8153-0752-7


Thomas R Forbes

Medical lore in the bestiaries (Medical History, 12:3 (July), 1968, page 245-253) [Journal article]

"...relatively little attention seems to have been given to one aspect of the bestiary, its content of crude medical lore, although the important studies of Dr. Beatrice White disclosed a rich fleld. My concern is with medical elements in the bestiaries proper, excluding the related but separate compilations of traditional remedies ascribed to, or written by, St. Hildegard of Bingen, Alexander Neckam, Johannes Cuba, and others. If one concedes its broad influence in the realms of art and literature, it seems safe to assume that the bestiary may also have been an influential element in popular medicine." Forbes

Language: English
DOI: 10.1017/s0025727300013284; PMCID: PMC1033826


Ilene H. Forsyth

The Theme of Cockfighting in Burgundian Romanesque Sculpture (Speculum, 53:2, 1978, page 252-282) [Journal article]

"Among the iconographic enigmas of Burgundian Romanesque sculpture, the subject of cockfighting is one of the most intriguing. Although rare, it can be seen at Autun, Saulieu, and Beaune. ... Exotic subjects such as enigmatic demons, grotesques, and fantastic semihuman forms, often of aggressive and violent character, are common enough in Romanesque church sculpture. As far as we know, most of these are fabulous and devoid of more than decorative or whimsical meaning. The cockfight scenes, however, cannot be so easily dismissed: they have dramatic immediacy and unusual naturalness; they appear to be based on the observation of thoroughly familiar and well-understood action; they seem rough and cruel rather than playful. Within a monastic or collegiate, context, the modern viewer finds them curious and distracting. If originally intended as allegories to convey serious religious ideas or moral precepts, their arcane meanings elude us. Still, the possibility of such allegorical meaning deserves exploration." - Forsyth

Language: English


Catherine Fountain

From a Catalan Bestiary De la natura de la cerena (Cornell Working Papers in Linguistics (CWPL), Fall; 17, 1999, page 10-13) [Journal article]

Language: English
ISSN: 0888-3122


Jean Fournée

Des Animaux dans nos églises (Limeil-Brevannes: Société parisienne d'histoire et d'archéologie normandes, 1994; Series: N° spécial des : "Cahiers Léopold Delisle", 43, 1994) [Book]

Language: French
ISBN: 2-901488-45-5


Georce Bingham Fowler

Intellectual Interests of Engelbert of Admont (Columbia University Press, 1947; Series: Studies in History, Economics and Public Law, 530)

This dissertation is a preliminary study of Engelbert, abbot of Admont from 1297 to 1327, based on printed texts of about half his works, together with rotographs of the unpublished De fascinatione, and a careful review of previous studies of Engelbert’s writings, some of which reproduce considerable portions of unprinted treatises. The results are well worth publication. Dr. Fowler has been able to study all the texts which are most significant for an analysis of Engelbert’s intellectual interests, and the list of manuscripts shows that these were also the most valued by his own and following generations. His readers will regret the unavoidable postponement of more adequate estimates of individual works for which the manuscripts are indispensable.

Language: English


George Bingham Fowler

Manuscripts of Engelbert of Admont (Chiefly in Austrian and German Libraries) (Osiris, 1954; Series: Volume 11)

In the subsequent pages I have noted all mss. copies that I have been able to locate in Austria and Germany of the known writings of ENGELBERT (Pötsch), ABBOT OF ST. PETER’s in Salzburg from 1288 to 1297, and ABBOT OF ADMONT from 1297 to 1327. All conjecture about anonymi has been excluded as well as comment about spurious and dubious works. I have given former shelfmarks as well as current identification numbers or symbols for each manuscript only where the first aids in locating the ms. - [Author]

Language: English


A medieval thinker confronts modern perplexities : Engelbert, abbot af Admont, O.S.B. (c. 1250 - 1331) (The American Benedictine Review, 1972; Series: Bd. 23)

General information on the life and works of Engelbert of Admont, the author of Tractatus de naturis animalium, an encyclopedia containing a section on animals.

Language: English


José Manuel Fradejas Rueda

El Bestiario de Juan de Austria (c. 1570) (in Bestiaires médiévaux. Nouvelles perspectives sur les manuscrits et les traditions textuelles, Louvain-la-Neuve: Louvain-la-Neuve, 2005, page 127-140) [Book article]

Language: Spanish


Lothar Frank

Die physiologus - Literaturen des englischen Mittelalters und die Tradition (Tübingen: 1971) [Dissertation]

Old English and Middle English Physiologus. From a dissertation - Tubingen.

220 pp., bibliography.

Language: German
LCCN: 73-340330; LC: PR166.F7; OCLC: 15708069


Henri Frankfort

The Art and Architecture of the Ancient Orient (London: Penguin Books, 1970; Series: The Pelican History of Art) [Book]

"Professor Frankfort first traces the development of Mesopotamian art from Sumerian times to the late Assyrian and Neo-Babylonian periods. In a second section he covers the art and architecture of Asia Minor and the Hittites, of the Levant in the second millenium B.C., of the Aramaeans and Phoenicians in Syria, and of Ancient Persia." - publisher

Includes many references to, and images of, animals both real and imaginary found in ancient artifacts, some of which have direct bearing on animal mythology in the West.

456 pp., 447 black & white illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English
LCCN: 70-128007; DDC: 709.35


James George Frazer

Folklore in the Old Testament (New York: Macmillan Co., 1923) [Book]

Language: English


Jacob and the Mandrakes (Proceedings of the British Academy, 8, 1917, 23 p.) [Journal article]

An extensive discussion of the legends of the mandrake plant through history, from the Genesis account to Greek mythology, Hebrew herbalism, medieval bestiaries and into the nineteenth century.

Language: English


Margaret B. Freeman

The Unicorn Tapestries (New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, and E.P. Dutton, 1983) [Book]

Seven late Gothic tapestries depicting the Hunt of the Unicorn on permanent exhibition at The Cloisters in New York.

Of all the late Gothic treasures at The Cloisters, none are more resplendent than the set of tapestries depicting the Hunt of the Unicorn. Indeed, of all the surviving late fifteenth-century tapestries, this magical series stands among the very best and is equal in quality to the famous Lady with the Unicorn set in the Musée de Cluny. Complex in meaning, intricate in iconography, richly endowed in formal values, brilliant in technical virtues, the Unicorn Tapestries have been studied in their various parts and categories in a number of articles and essays but, curiously, they have never been afforded a deep examination into all of their facets through all aspects of art-historical scholarship. With this penetrating and balanced analysis, Margaret B. Freeman, in whose devoted curatorial hands these magnificent works of art have particularly flourished over the past three and a half decades, has achieved a fundamental index of scholarship, one that will be the bench mark for all future learned interpretations. [Foreword]

Color illustrations.

Language: English


Roger French

Ancient Natural History: Histories of Nature (London; New York: Routledge, 1994) [Book]

"Ancient Natural History surveys the ways in which people in the ancient world thought about nature. The writings of Aristotle, Theophrastus, Strabo and Pliny are examined, as well the popular beliefs of their contemporaries. Roger French finds that the same natural-historical material was used to serve the purposes of both the Greek philosopher and the Christian allegorist, or of a naturalist like Theophrastus and a collector of curiosa like Pliny. He argues convincingly that the motives of ancient writers on nature were rarely "scientific" and, indeed, that there was no science at all in the ancient world." - publisher

Chapters: Aristotle and the Natures of Things; Theophrastus, plants and elephants; Geography and natural history; Greece and Rome; the Natural History of Pliny; Animals and parables.

357 p., 33 black & white photgraphs, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-415-08880-1; LCCN: 94-5131; LC: QH15.F741994; DDC: 508'.09'01-dc20


Science In The Early Roman Empire: Pliny the Elder, His Sources and His Influence (London: Croom Helm, 1986) [Book]

The symposium studies collected in this book represent the newest research being done on the important and difficult figure of Pliny the Elder (ca. 23-79 AD). If Rome is not always regarded as the most natural home for the scientific spirit--that seeming rather to characterize the Greeks--particular problems are raised by the effort Pliny had to make to transfer his Greek sources into a Roman form and context.

CONTENTS: The Elder Pliny and his times [J. Reynolds]. The Pliny translation group of Germany [R.C.A. Rottlander]. The structure of Pliny the Elder's "Natural History" [A. Locher]. The perils of patriotism: Pliny and Roman medicine [V. Nutton]. Pharmacy in Pliny's "Natural History": Some observations on substances and sources [J. Scarborough]. Pliny on plants: His place in the history of botany [A.G. Morton]. Aspects of Pliny's zoology [L. Bodson]. Pliny on mineralogy and metals [J.F. Healy]. Chemical tests in Pliny [F. Greenaway]. Some astronomical topics in Pliny [O. Pedersen]. Pinian astronomy in the Middle Ages [B.S. Eastwod]. Pliny in Renaissance medicine [R.K. French].

287 pp. Illustrations, bibliographical notes, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-7099-1084-3; LC: PA6614; DDC: 001.2'0942'4


Roger French, Andrew Cunningham

Before Science: the Invention of the Friars' Natural Philosophy (Aldershot, Hants: Scolar Press, 1996) [Book]

Science, both as a practice and as a way of knowing the natural world, is of recent creation. For six centuries before the creation of science, nature was explored and discussed in Christian Europe within the discipline known as 'natural philosophy', a God-oriented discipline. The present book investigates the origin of two versions of 'natural philosophy', those created by two of the Orders of friars, the Dominicans and the Franciscans, in the early thirteenth century. It also argues that these natural philosophies were both created to help meet specific religio-political needs of the thirteenth-century Catholic Church. The famous medieval conflict between 'science' and 'religion' is in fact a construct of the nineteenth century. The medieval discipline of natural philosophy, by contrast, was one in which nature was explored in the cause of defending Roman Catholicism - fighting heresy and promoting lay spirituality. - [Publisher]

Includes discussion of the works of Albertus Magnus, Aristotle, Avicenna, Roger Bacon, Bartholomeus Anglicus, Alexander Neckam, Pliny, Augustine, Dominic, Francis, Thomas of Cantimpre, Vincent of Beauvais, and others.

298 p., illustrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 1-85928-287-3; LCCN: 95047878; LC: B738N3F741996; DDC: 261.5'5'0902


John Block Friedman

Albert the Great's Topoi of Direct Observation and his Debt to Thomas of Cantimpré (in Leiden: Brill, 1997, Leiden: Pre-Modern Encyclopedic Texts: Proceedings of the Second COMERS Congress, Groningen, 1997, page 379-392) [Book article]

As early as 1852 scholars had become aware that Albert the Great’s expansion of Aristotle's nineteen books on animals, De animalibus, made between 1258 and 1262, relied heavily on Thomas of Cantimpré's De naturis rerum, completed by 1240. The arguments for this indebtedness were well summarised by the late Pauline Aiken, who in 1947 showed through a set of convincing parallels that Albert had not only made very considerable use of Thomas, but had also incorporated many extremely idiosyncratic errors in his source, errors which had come about through Thomas’ misreadings of Pliny and other earlier writers on natural history. ... The purpose of the present article is two fold. I should like first to present some general information about two now-lost encyclopaedic writers used extensively as sources by Thomas of Cantimpré. These still unidentified authors, Experimentator and the author of Liber rerum, must have been of considerable repute up to Thomas’ own day. Their works, however, are at present known only by the extracts in Thomas’ book. I shall then try to show how Albert develops the topoi of direct experience in his adaptations of these two writers from Thomas’ encyclopedia. What the result of my study suggests is that Albert very skilfully recycled material from both of these sources through a variety of rhetorical stratagems to make it his own, sometimes merely suppressing the names of the sources, and sometimes more elaborately augmenting, as we shall see, with comments of an evaluative and experiential nature, some of the more fantastic discussions of the two earlier authors, especially on whaling. Thus, Albert’s reputation as the first important medieval direct observer of nature can be seen to be based as much on his rhetorical skills as on the breadth and acuity of his actual experience of the animal world.

Language: English


A bonnacon’s defensive tactics in medieval natural history (Archives of Natural History, 2022; Series: Volume 49, Issue 1)

The bonnacon, an animal described in the medieval bestiary, when pursued by hunters, squirts a cloud of boiling dung at them, wounding both dogs and men. Another bestiary animal, the onager, also used its dung in a deceptive way to avoid pursuit. These defensive tactics can be related to similar tactics reported in medieval sources for two birds, the grey heron (Ardea cinerea) and the little bustard (Tetrax tetrax) when attacked by hunters’ falcons. Was the fabled defensive behaviour of the bonnacon transferred to a completely different species when passing through the medium of experti, huntsmen, foresters and falconers, where the actions of animals were observed but not correctly interpreted as to cause and effect? This paper traces the bonnacon in late medieval history and studies the apparent portability of its defensive behaviour among different species. - [Abstract]

Language: English


'Monstres qui a ii mamelles bloe' : Illuminator’s Instructions in a MS of Thomas of Cantimpré (Journal of the Early Book Society, 2008; Series: Volume 7)

Medieval manuscripts are full of hidden narratives, which we might liken to the signs left the morning after a snow. Signs of the dog at the fire hydrant or the squirrel and its seeds are various intersections where we can infer from tracks what happened, though the agent is gone. In codicological study, the designer—one of the least talked-of participants in the manuscript’s creation—is the absent agent, and his story or narrative is left only occasionally in his notes to the book’s illuminator. One such absent agent is the author of an extensive set of illuminator’s instructions found in a copy of Thomas of Cantimpré's encyclopedia, De naturis rerum (DNR), now Valenciennes Bibliothèque Municipale MS 320, written and painted about 1290. The quality and sheer quantity of its 670 pictures point to an institutional or private patron of considerable wealth and influence, perhaps the prior of an Augustinian convent near Paris. These instructions show that Valenciennes MS 320 was constructed according to some of the new techniques developed for the rapidly expanding late-thirteenth-century trade in books with extensive programs of illustration. - [Author]

Language: English


The Monstrous Races in Medieval Art and Thought (Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press, 2000) [Book]

"The unusual races of men that make up the subject of this book represented alien yet real cultures existing beyond the boundaries of the European known world from antiguity through the Middle Ages. They occur with great frequency in medieval art and literature... I call them "monstrous" because that is their most common description in the Middle Ages. But many of these peoples were not monstrous at all. They simply differed in physical appearance and social practices from the person describing them. ... Even the most bizarre, however, were not supernatural or infernal creatures, but varieties of men..." - Friedman, Introduction.

Reprint of 1981 Harvard University Press edition, with corrections and a new bibliography.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8156-2826-9


The naming of the beasts: natural history in the medieval bestiary (Cambridge: Medical History, 1992; Series: 36 (3))

A review with commentary of The Naming of the Beasts: Natural History in the Medieval Bestiary by Wilma George and Brunsdon Yapp.

Language: English
0025-7273; PMCID: PMC1036601


Peacocks and preachers: analytic technique in Marcus of Orvieto's Liber de moralitatibus, Vatican lat. MS 5935 (in Willene B. Clark & Meradith T. McMunn, ed., Beasts and Birds of the Middle Ages. The Bestiary and its Legacy, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1989, page 176-196) [Book article]

Discusses the use of animal exempla in Marcus of Orvieto's Liber de moralitibus and provides an edition of the text.

Language: English


Thomas of Cantimpré's Animal Moralities: A Conflation of Genres (Enarratio: Publications of the Medieval Association of the Midwest, 1998; Series: Volume 5)

Of the great Dominican and Franciscan encyclopaediae, only that of Thomas of Cantimpré, the De Naturis Rerum in twenty books, completed, after fifteen years of work, in 1240, contains moralizations expressing the symbolism of certain animals, trees and hems, springs, planets, and elements. As Thomas notes in an elaborate prologue, often he will append to a given entry such moralizations, based on scripture and classical and patristic writers. "Hence I have briefly distinguished the moral meanings and significances of things in certain places from time to time, but not continuously because I would shun prolixity." Thomas aimed his work largely at an audience of preachers and parish priests, and he believed that the animal history portion of the encyclopaedia could offer them a valuable tool for the preparation of sermons. In this intention Thomas wrote in the tradition of near contemporaries like Robert of Basevom, whose forma praedicandi tells us that the preacher ought always to offer his listeners something subtle and curious, a device particularly efficacious when they begin to sleep. - [Author]

Language: English


Thomas of Cantimpré, De Naturis Rerum [Prologue, Book III, Book XIX]. (in La science de la nature: théories et pratiques (Cahiers d'études médiévales 2), Montréal/Paris: Bellarmin; J. Vrin, 1974, page 107-154) [Book article]

Language: English


John Block Friedman, Jessica W. Wegman

Medieval Iconography: A Research Guide (New York: Garland Publishing, 1998; Series: Garland Medieval Bibliographies Volume 20) [Book]

"Aims to help the researcher locate visual motifs, whether in medieval art or in literature, and to understand how they function in other medieval literary or artistic works. Chapter One, Art broadly covers various aspects of medieval art understood as the tools of investigation, such as the theory of iconography, genres like woodcarving, sculpture, and manuscript painting, periods like Anglo-Saxon, and countries. Chapter Two, Other Tools, offers a guide to works which are not in themselves visual but which medieval artists may have consulted or been influenced by, such as encyclopaediae offering the physical descriptions, habits, and oddities of animals, plants, and insects, and exempla and sermon collections containing illustrative stories like those using the fox as a symbol of duplicity. Chapter Three, Learned Imagery, treats traditions, works, concepts, and persons of interest to educated medieval people, such as alchemy, mythology, astrology, Alexander the Great, or the legend of the philosopher Aristotle ridden about like a horse by a woman named Campaspe or Phyllis. Chapter Four, The Christian Tradition, treats the Bible and figures and situations in it, as well as the vast body of glosses, exegesis, and legend which was copied into the medieval Bible in the course of manuscript transmission. Chapter Five, The Natural World, covers "natural history": medieval scientific conceptions; animals, listed as specific terrestrial, aerial, and marine creatures as well as imaginary forms of life, like the griffin or barnacle goose; members of the plant kingdom; and geographical features such as cliffs and mountains. Books like herbals and bestiaries are also studied in themselves. Chapter 6, Medieval Daily Life, treats a great variety of subjects somewhat more popular in appeal than those touched on in Chapter Three, including baths, beauty and ugliness, costume, fools and madness, magic, and ships." - publisher

437 pp , 1,896 entries. Index of authors and subjects.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8153-1753-0; LC: Z5933.F751998; LCCN: 97-42974; DCC: 016.700'9'02-dc21


Herbert Friedmann

A Bestiary for Saint Jerome: Animal Symbolism in European Religious Art (Washington: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1980) [Book]

"Anyone who has frequented the great museums in this country or abroad will have noted the numerous intriguing and strinking representations of Saint Jerome, many of which include a lion and often one or more other kinds of animals. ... the story of Saint Jerome was one of the few themes within the conventional limits of church art that leant itself readily to extensive use of natural history material. ... [This] book may, therefore, be of some interest to naturalists and historians of the natural sciences, as well as iconologists and art historians. With the former group in mind, I have thought it necessary to deal with the nature and special logic of symbolism and allegory, since without these attributes the whole artistic effort would have been meaningless and probably would never have developed." - introduction

378 p., bibliography, index.

Language: English
874744466; LCCN: 79-607804; LC: ND1432.E85F741980; DDC: 704.94'6


Franz Fritsche

Untersuchung ueber die Quellen der Image du monde des Walter von Metz (Vereinigten Friedrichs-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, 1880)

Research on the sources of Walter von Metz's (Gossuin de Metz) Image du monde.

Language: French


Markus Führer

Albert the Great (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy Archive, 2006, 2020)

A biography of Albertus Magnus, with notes on his writing, a list of his works, and a bibliography.

Language: English


Naoyuki Fukumoto

Sur la Nouvelle Edition du Roman de Renart d'apres les Manuscrits du Groupe G (in Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed., Épopée Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Société Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 215-226) [Book article]

Notes on a planned new edition of the Roman de Renart: includes discussion of previous editions, the manuscripts used, the branches of the text, and the form of the new edition.

Language: French


Mariateresa Fumagalli, Massimo Parodi

Due Enciclopedie dell'Occidente Medievale: Alessandro Neckam e Bartolomeo Anglico (Rivista di Storia della Filosofia, 1985; Series: Volume 40, Number 1)

Two Encyclopedias of the Medieval West: Alexander Neckam and Bartholomaeus Anglicus.

Following a conventionally adopted schema, both authors take into consideration two XIII C. encyclopedias belonging to the first kind (the so-called "inventory encyclopedias" as distinct from "generative encyclopedias") and focus their analysis upon the themes of nature and of men’s society. It is thus possible to point out two different theoretical attitudes, as well as two different levels for knowledge on the background of a frame presenting relevant structure and style analogies, determined both by the audience homogeneity on one side, and by the persistency of some fundamental axioms (dating back to Augustinus) on the other side. The rupture with the tradition, testified by vivacious and radical criticism, is carried out by Bacon’s and Lullus’ encyclopedical projects, which no more oriented their interests upon the exclusive problem of the growing amount of information necessitating of exposition, but rather mainly upon that of the generative structures of knowledge. The metaphor of the “tree” substitutes herself to the formerly prevailing one of the "mirror": the "genus" encyclopedia, once closed system of information, starts to become an organical structure and an open organization of knowledge. - [Abstract]

Language: Italian


Cristina Fumarco

Il manuscritto del Liber Floridus del museo Condé di Chantilly e le sue miniature (Corso di laurea in lettere moderne, universita cattolica del Sacro Cuore-Milano, 1997-1998)

The manuscript of the Liber Floridus from the Condé museum in Chantilly (Bibliothèque du Musée Condé, Ms 724) and its miniatures.

Language: ITalian


Paolo Galiano

The Unicorn - Part I: From myth to Hermeticism; Part II: The history of the unicorn through images (Simmetria Institute Library Museum, 2020)

The myth of the unicorn has ancient origins, but only dates back to the Indikas of the Greek Ctesias in the 3rd century. to. C. that the description of him is, so to speak, "officialised". At the beginning of the Christian era the Unicorn was taken by the Fathers of the Church and the Doctors, Tertullian, Justin and Augustine, as a symbol of Christ in the exegesis of some Psalms (21, 29 and 91); the Christian interpretation of the myth of the Unicorn was taken up again in the Topographia christiana by Cosmas Indicopleuste, written between 535 and 537. The Unicorn takes on a dual value in Christianity, as a symbol of Christ but also of evil, as we read in the Legend of Barlaam. But more important, as far as we are concerned here, is the work of an unknown author, the Physiologus , written between the 2nd and 4th centuries, in which we find for the first time the mention of what will later be known as the myth of Lady and the Unicorn. The fable of the Lady and the Unicorn became a recurring theme in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, but despite the possible symbolic value this theme rarely had a place in Hermeticism and Alchemy. ...the historical and symbolic development of the myth of the Unicorn from the Sumerians to the 16th century is illustrated here with a gallery of images, through which the numerous and different aspects of it are exposed. - [Author]

Language: Italian


Anna Gannon

King of all Beasts, Beast of all Kings: Lions in Anglo-Saxon Coinage and Art (in Aleks Pluskowski, ed., Medieval Animals, Cambridge: Archaeological Review from Cambridge 18, 2002, page 22-37) [Book article]

Language: English


Peter F. Ganz

Der Millstatter Physiologus (in Geistliche Dichtung des 12. Jahrhunderts: Eine Textauswahl, Berlin: Erich Schmidt Verlag, 1960, page 47-58) [Book article]

A description of a German version of the Physiologus found in manuscript Landesmuseums fur Karnten in Klagenfurt Pergamentkodex VI/19, along with a 356 line verse transcription.

Language: German
LC: PD25.P45v.7


Richard Garbe

The The Physiologus and the Christian Fish Symbol (The Open Court, 1914; Series: Vol. 1914 : Iss. 7 , Article 2)

Notes on the possible Indian origin of some the chapters in the Physiologus.

Language: English


Antonio Garrosa Resina

La tradicion de animales fantasticos medieval espanola (Castilla: Boletin del Departamento de Literatura Espanola, 9-10, 1985, page 77-101) [Journal article]

The treatment of animals and monsters and the relationship to the fantastic in the Medieval period.

Language: Spanish
ISSN: 0378-200X


Milton S. Garver

Some Supplementary Italian Bestiary Chapters (Romanic Review, 11, 1920, page 308-327) [Journal article]

The edition of the following bestiary chapters is intended to present hitherto unpublished material which may prove of value to the further study of Italian bestiaries and also to supplement two previous works on this subject. These are the edition by Goldstaub and Wendriner of the manuscript in Padua and that of Garver and McKenzie of the Tuscan bestiary according to manuscripts in Paris and Rome. The chapters here presented are from a fifteenth century manuscript in the Biblioteca Riccardiana, Cod. 1357 P. III. 4 and designated by the symbol R3 in the above mentioned studies. It consists of 248 folios and contains the Etica and Fisonomia of Aristotle, various ecclesiastical writings, lives of saints, and, ff. 74-108, the Libro della natuara degli animali... - Garver

Language: English


Sources of the Beast Similies in the Italian Lyric of the Thirteenth Century (Romanische Forschungen, XXI, 1905-08, page 276-320) [Journal article]

The purpose of the present investigation is to consider the similes drawn from mediaeval animal lore and used by the Italian lyric poets previous to Dante. Such similes are used to illustrate the relation of the lover to his lady, thus differing from their use in bestiary literature where they served as examples for the spiritual life. To find the more direct sources of these similes will be the task in this study. - [Author]

Language: English


Symbolic Animals of Perugia and Spoleto (in 32:181 (April)The Burlington Magazine for Connoisseurs, 1918, page 152, 156-160) [Book article]

A description of two medieval Italian churches, S. Pietro in Spoleto and S. Costanza in Perugia, which have animal carvings on their facades. The author sees the images as both decorative and symbolic.

Language: English


Milton S. Garver, Kenneth McKenzie

Il Bestiario Toscano secondo la lexione dei codice di Padua e di Roma (Rome: Studi romanzi, 1912; Series: VIII) [Book]

On the Tuscan Bestiary.

Reprinted: Bologna, Il Mulino, 1971, 1972. Spogli elettronici dell'italiano delle origini e del Duecento. II. Forme., volume 9. Digital text available.

313 pp.

Language: Italian


M. Gaster

Il Physiologus Rumeno (Archivio glottologico italiano, 1873; Series: Volume 10)

The existence of a Romanian Physiologus remains unknown to scholars who have researched the history of this curious zoology; and the publication of the text, which now follows here, would intend to fill this gap. The manuscript, which I possess, dates back to 1777 and appears to be the only one preserved so far. This codex shows to be a copy of more ancient texts, which were written by a certain Andonache Berheceanul ... in Bucharest. In fact, some scattered clues, which we will discuss in more detail below, point to the existence of this Physiologus among the Romanians in an earlier age. Our text is not at all complete, lacking chapters, the existence of which can nevertheless be demonstrated and one of which has even penetrated popular songs. On the other hand, it appears to be broken, unfortunately, due to several inconsistencies. The title, which sounds like Bird Stories, refers only to some chapters. The copyist, apparently, first transcribed the entire first chapter alone; and he probably then copied the remaining part from another text, because we see the first chapter return again, slightly changed, in the third chapter. ... And it is added that the copyist did not always read the ancient Romanian copy well and particularly misunderstood the archaic expressions, thus sometimes making the text even more unclear. - [Author]

Language: Italian


Brian W. Gastle

The Old and Middle English Beast Fable (in Laura Cooner Lambdin & Robert Thomas Lambdin, ed., A Companion to Old and Middle English Literature, Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 2002, page 69-85) [Book article]

"This reference collection categorizes primary texts in old and middle English literature by sepcific genres. The Beast Fable entry includes a

general introduction to the genre, discussions of the Old English Physiologus, The Phoenix, the Middle English Bestiary, The Fox and the

Wolf, Chaucers Nuns Priests Tale, Lydgate, Henryson, and others. It concludes with a brief critical survey." - Gastle

Language: English


Deborah Gatewood

Illustrating a Thirteenth Century Natural History Encyclopedia: The Pictorial Tradition of Thomas of Cantimpre's "De Natura Rerum" and Valencienne's Ms. 320 (Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh, 2000) [Dissertation]

The Dominican Thomas of Cantimpré composed his Latin natural history encyclopedia in twenty books titled De natura rerum (On the Nature of Things) around 1245. Subjects in the encyclopedia range from monstrous people to animals of the land and sea, trees, herbs, metals, great rivers, and astronomy. Fourteenth-century charters regulating the production of pecias at the University of Paris show that De natura rerum was prized in academic circles. Eleven finely illustrated manuscripts of the text exist. This dissertation studies the medieval illustrative tradition of De natura rerum, which has never been the subject of scholarly inquiry. I introduce the topic with an overview of medieval natural history illustration. I focus on thirteenth-century VBibliothèque Municipale de Valenciennes, MS 320, the earliest extant manuscript of the tradition; I provide a codicological, stylistic, and iconographic analysis of the manuscript. The 670 gold and color natural history illustrations in this codex are highly unusual for their time of production. Many reflect current interests in newly available translations of Aristotle. Accompanying the illustrations are hundreds of heretofore-unassessed vernacular illustrators' notes, which carry important information about the creation of the illustrations and suggest that Valenciennes 320 contains an original picture program upon which the illustrations of later manuscripts were based. In an analysis of the illustrations, coupled with some dialectal features in the illuminators' notes, I localize the Gothic manuscript in northeastern France, and provide compelling evidence that a member of the Order of the Augustinian Friars commissioned it. Using a closely related fourteenth-century Czech manuscript (Prague Klementinum Ms. XIV A 15) as an example, I address the transmission of the illustrations of Valenciennes 320 into later manuscripts. I also show that Cistercian patronage was important to the later illustrative tradition. The appendices of the dissertation provide a complete list of all the illustrations in Valenciennes Ms. 320 and Klementinum Ms. XIV A 15, and an annotated list of related fourteenth- and fifteenth-century manuscripts illustrated in the Holy Roman Empire. - [Abstract]

Language: English


Patricia M. Gathercole

Animals in Medieval French Manuscript Illumination (Lewiston, NY: Edwin Mellen Press, 1995) [Book]

"Medieval manuscript painting offers a rich storehouse of material for literary scholars. This volume concentrates on domestic and wild mammals, rather than on the birds and monsters which have been treated elsewhere. Eighteen sections deal concisely with bears, camels, cats, dogs, elephants, etc., in what sorts of manuscripts they are found, and how they are presented. In addition, there are an introduction, conclusion, bibliography, and seventeen black and white illustrations from the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris, and a color frontispiece." - publisher

142 pp.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-7734-8991-6


Brigitte Gauvin

Décrire et illustrer : les représentations iconographiques des animaux aquatiques dans les manuscrits latins du Liber de natura rerum de Thomas de Cantimpré (RursuSpicae, 2022; Series: Volume 4)

Describing and Illustrating: Iconographic Representations of Aquatic Animals in Latin Manuscripts of the Liber de natura rerum by Thomas of Cantimpré

We know of 222 manuscripts of Thomas of Cantimpré's Liber de natura rerum, and about fifteen of them are illustrated. However, as far as books VI and VII devoted to sea monsters and fish are concerned, this number drops to ten. Among these, eight have very close illustrations which prove the existence of a common model. We focus on what motivated the initial illustrator's choices: the influence of bestiaries, support on reality or the content of the text (anatomical description, behavior, interactions). Then we examine how the various manuscripts appropriate and adapt the initial model and according to which criteria. Finally, we give a closer look at some particular cases that raise questions. - [Abstract]

Language: French
DOI: 10.4000/rursuspicae.2523


Petit poisson deviendra grand : les créatures aquatiques et leurs petits dans les encyclopédies médiévales (Anthropozoologica, 2010; Series: 56, 17)

Little fish will grow big… Aquatic creatures and their young in ancient and medieval littérature

Among the animals, those occupying the seas and rivers are the most difficult to observe, and consequently they are not as well known as birds or terrestrial animals and therefore generate fantasies. However, scholars in Antiquity have attributed to a few of them parenting behavior which differs from one species to another and can be considered as a specific feature, and medieval encyclopedists carefully collected and transmitted these informations, and even accentuated the parental behaviors. Relying on a precise study of ancient and medieval sources and on the illustrations that can sometimes be present in some manuscripts, and contextualizing encyclopedic writings, we will try to explain where the fishes’parental behavior described in medieval encyclopedias come from. - [Abstract]

Language: French
ISBN: 2107-08817; DOI: 10.5252/anthropozoologica2021v56a17


Brigitte Gauvin, Catherine Jacquemard, Marie-Agnes Lucas-Avenel

L'auctoritas de Thomas de Cantimpré en matière ichtyologique (Vincent de Beauvais, Albert le Grand, l'Hortus sanitatis) (Kentron. Multidisciplinary Review of the Ancient World , 2013; Series: 29)

Medieval encyclopedias are frequently presented as collages or montages of quotations. The encyclopaedists themselves, most often displaying at the beginning of their works a list of auctoritates or preceding each of the quotations with a marker, do their best to present their work as the fruit of many readings, from which they extracted a great deal of information, which was then organized in an orderly fashion in order to become accessible to a public which hardly has the time, or the means, to accomplish the same eforts. However, the research that we carried out to edit Book IV of the Hortus sanitatis enabled us to deine precisely what were the working methods applied by the compiler: in fact, to gather his information, far from reading the ancient sources, he drew on medieval authors who had already done the compilation work. For book IV, devoted to aquatic animals, we were able to establish that he had used two medieval sources: book XVII of the Speculum naturale by Vincent of Beauvais and book XXIV of De animalibus by Albertus Magnus. In the same perspective, the investigation of the sources of the Hortus sanitatis led us to wonder about a possible relationship between these two encyclopedias of the 13th century and a third one, widely used by both of them, the Liber de natura rerum of Thomas of Cantimpré – more specifically books VI and VII, devoted respectively to sea monsters and fish. We would like, in this article, to clarify what is the nature of the relationship between these sources, by relating the books which, in each of them, concern aquatic animals. Our approach will follow the construction of knowledge from the 13th to the 15th century: we will begin by showing how the rediscovery of Aristotle influenced the work of Thomas de Cantimpré; how the latter reorganized and transmitted the knowledge of the Greek scholar and what were the results of this work. Vincent de Beauvais and Albertus Magnus then drew heavily on the Liber de natura rerum of Thomas de Cantimpré, as already shown by P. Aiken and J.B. Friedman, but we would like to insist on the particular role played by the Liber natura rerum in the transmission of Aristotelian knowledge on aquatic animals and on the way in which it was received and used, first by Albertus Magnus and Vincent of Beauvais, then, through them, by the compiler of the Hortus sanitatis. Finally, three complex examples, developed in a last part, will show that the rediscovery of Aristotle through Arabic translations may have led medieval encyclopaedists to misinterpretations, which were transmitted until the dawn of the Renaissance. - [Authors]

Language: French
DOI: 10.4000/kentron.668; HALId: hal-00917986


Kathleen Sue Gaylord

The Medieval Bestiary In The Golden Age: Allegory And Emblem In Gracian's 'El Criticon' (University Of Illinois At Urbana-Champaign, 1986) [Dissertation]

PhD dissertation at the University Of Illinois At Urbana-Champaign.

"The perpetual problems of pessimism versus optimism and Christianity versus secularity in El Criticon have always been issues without resolution. Many critics erroneously assume that because Gracian was a Jesuit and Spain a Catholic country that therefore El Criticon was an optimistic, Christian work. Through an examination of the role of the medieval bestiary and emblem literature in El Criticon, this thesis endeavors to prove that such a premise is unacceptable. The thesis begins with a definition of a bestiary as allegorized animal lore, although occasionally a bestiary author will omit the allegories. Allegory is the connecting point between emblem literature and the bestiary, its medieval ancestor. The emblematic procedure was already latent in the bestiaries which gave an animal's description and typological characteristics, omitting only the graphic representations of emblem literature. After an examination of representative theories concerning the question of optimism versus pessimism, the thesis then demonstrates the extent to which Gracian relied upon medieval bestiary tradition. A description of each major beast is given, followed by its Christian allegory, and Gracian's use of the beast in El Criticon. In most instances the medieval moral viewpoint is transformed into an illustration of the secular morality necessary for the exceptional man endeavoring to live successfully in this world. The culminating point in Gracian's use of beast lore is animal related grotesquerie whose point of departure is traditional beast allegory which is extended until at times it even becomes independent of its medieval ancestor. The treatment of beast related grotesque is divided into two areas: the relationship with the themes of carnival and mask and the creation of composite figures. Gracian's condemnation of vice through these techniques serves to illustrate for the reader the evils he must conquer in order to survive life's journey and arrive at the Isle of Immortality." - abstract

169 p.

Language: English
PQDD: AAT8623302


Demetri Gazdaru

Vestigios de bestiarios medievales en las literaturas hispanicas e iberoamericanas (Romanistisches Jahrbuch, 22, 1971, page 259-274) [Journal article]

Language: Spanish
ISSN: 0080-3898


Bent Gebert

Der Satyr im Bad : Textsinn und Bildsinn in der Physiologus-Handschrift Cod. Bongarsianus 318 der Burgerbibliothek Bern : Mit einer Edition der Versio C des 'Physiologus latinus' (Mittellateinisches Jahrbuch, 2010)

Under the authoritative name Physiologus, a series of texts from late antiquity and the Middle Ages transmit allegorical primal tales of animals, plants and stones, the fascination of which continues into modern times. The Physiologus tradition is not only based on the historical interest in natural history texts before the invention of natural science. In addition to theological and anthropological aspects, it is also the media dimensions of medieval text culture that underlie the fascination of Physiologus and its narrative subjects. In the interplay of text-bound meaning, visual meaning and materiality of manuscripts, the medieval Physiologus tradition creates constellations of meaning that make literature a specific field of interaction for media forms of knowledge. Characteristic of these types of media meaning creation are processes that run across the "Protestant" decoupling of medium and form, of material signifiers and spiritual signifieds and their hierarchization in modern sign orders: They bear traces of the indissoluble mediality of meaning, which the following attempt to describe would like to follow up on a specific example. The Codex Bongarsianus 318 of the Burgerbibliothek in Bern, which can be found on fol. 7r -22v a short Latin version of the Physiologus has survived, is in many respects one of the outstanding textual witnesses of the European Physiologus tradition With its creation in the middle of the 9th century, the manuscript is not only one of the oldest surviving texts of the Physiologus Tradition at all - the oldest manuscript of the Greek archetype, which dates back to around 150/170, dates from the 10th century - The Bern Physiologus manuscript Cod. Bongarsianus 318 is also the earliest manuscript to offer extensive illustrations of the short stories that come from the Greek corpus of Physiologus as well as additional sources such as the Hexaemeron of Ambrose of Milan and the Etymologiae of Isidore of Seville. In particular, the “antique character” of the illuminations as well as their remarkable stylistic variance in the image design attracted the interest of previous research who associated the codex with the ambitions of Carolingian book art to build on the book illumination of late antiquity.

Language: German


Archibald Geikie

The Birds of Shakespeare (Glasgow: James Maclehose & Sons, 1916) [Book]

Notes on birds found in Shakespeare's writing, with many references to Physiologus and bestiary material.

121 p., illustrations, index.

Language: English
LC: PR3044.G4


Maurice Genevoix

Le Roman de Renard (Paris: Presses de la Cite, 1958) [Book]

A retelling in prose of several of the Reynard the Fox tales, with commentary.

"Le Roman de Renard compte parmi les titres les plus celebres de notre litterature populaire du Moyen Age. Mais derriere ce titre, qu'est-ce qu'il y a? La lecteur d'aujourd'hui serait bien en peine de le dire. S'l y allait voir, il trouverait ou branches, dus a divers anonymes des XIIe, XIIIe et XIVe siecles - des histoires sans suite, qui, souvent, se repetent a moins qu'elles ne se contredisent. Donc, pas trace de roman au sens ou nous entendrons ce mot, rien qu'un heros de roman, Renard le Goupil, un heros de roman en quate de son romancier." - publisher

Language: French


Wilma B. George

The Living World of the Bestiary (Archives of Natural History, 12:1 (April), 1985, page 161-164) [Journal article]

Language: English
ISSN: 0260-9541; OCLC: 12746550


The Yale (Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, 31, 1968, page 423-28) [Journal article]

"The first written record of the animal called yale or eale is in Pliny's Natural History. After that it was taken up by Solinus, occurred in the majority of Latin bestiaries and died out as a regular bestiary animal in the seventeenth century. But, by that time, it had become firmly established in English heraldry. Although it has been commented on in edited texts of Pliny and several articles have been written on it, it has never been satisfactorily identified with any living, or recently extinct, animal. It is typically dismissed as one of Pliny's now shrinking number of mythical animals... Subsequent authors have tried to identify the yale with a gnu, a mountain goat or a deformed cow but the majority have concurred with Druce, who must be regarded as the authority on yales, that it is unidentifiable. In the course of a survey of animals depicted on ancient maps it became clear that a number of hitherto unidentified animals would be worthy of further investigation. ... Considering this evidence from the point of view of a zoologist several interesting suggestions emerged, one of which has been the possible identification of the yale. ... All the evidence points to the water buffaloes as the origin of the yale. African cape buffalo or Indian water buffalo is difficult to decide but, on balance, the evidence seems to be in favour of the Indian water buffalo." - George

Two pages of black & white photographs of yale images in manuscripts as well as the living animals discussed in the article as possible origin animals.

Language: English


Wilma B. George, Brunsdon Yapp

The Naming of the Beasts: Natural History in the Medieval Bestiary (London: Duckworth, 1991) [Book]

"Bestiaries have been much studied, but almost entirely from a textual point of view. Little attention has been paid to the pictures, and until recently almost none to the natural history. The object of this book is to correct these deficiencies, and to show that, so far from being an ignorant collection of moralities and old wive's tales, as has usually been assumed by scholars, a bestiary is an attempt, not wholly unsuccessful or discreditable for the time at which it was produced, to give an account of some of the more conspicuous creatures that could be seen by the reader or that occurred in legends. In spite of its name, it is not concerned only with beasts. It usually includes rather more birds than mammals (to which 'beasts', Latin bestia, are equivalent), often some fishes and reptiles, and a few insects and other invertebrates.There are also accounts of trees and, in a few copies, of sundry natural phenomena and unnatural wonders. We shall deal mainly with the beasts and birds, where the best natural history is found." - Yapp, introduction

231 pp., illustrations (some color), bibliography, index, manuscript lists.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-7156-2238-2; LCCN: 93-110777; LC: QL351.G461991; DDC: 591.01220; OCLC: 20524101


Gerald of Wales, Thomas Forester, trans.; Richard Hoare, trans; Thomas Wright, ed.

The historical works of Giraldus Cambrensis (London: H. G. Hohn, 1863, 1905)

Contains works by Gerald of Wales (Giraldus Cambrensis): The Topography of Ireland, and The History of the Conquest of Ireland, translated by Thomas Forester; The Itinerary Through Wales, and The Description of Wales, translated by Robert Colt Hoare. Revised and edited by Thomas Wright.

Language: English


The Topography of Ireland (Cambridge, Ontario: In parentheses Publications, 2000; Series: Medieval Latin Series)

The Topographia Hibernica of Gerald of Wales, English translation republished from the original text as translated by Thomas Forester and edited by Thomas Wright.

Language: English


Gerald of Wales, John O'Meara, trans.

The History and Topography of Ireland (Penguin Books, 1983)

Translated from the Latin by John J. O'Meara; with a map & drawings from a contemporary copy c1200 A.D.

Gerald of Wales was among the most dynamic and fascinating churchmen of the twelfth century. A member of one of the leading Norman families involved in the invasion of Ireland, he first visited there in 1183 and later returned in the entourage of Henry II. The resulting Topographia Hiberniae is an extraordinary account of his travels. Here he describes landscapes, fish, birds and animals; recounts the history of Ireland's rulers; and tells fantastical stories of magic wells and deadly whirlpools, strange creatures and evil spirits. Written from the point of view of an invader and reformer, this work has been rightly criticized for its portrait of a primitive land, yet it is also one of the most important sources for what is known of Ireland during the Middle Ages. - [Publisher]

Language: English


Christoph Gerhardt

Gab es im Mittelalter Fabelwesen? (Wirkendes Wort: Deutsche Sprache in Forschung und Lehre, 38:2, 1988, page 156-171) [Journal article]

Language: German


Mia L. Gerhardt

The Ant Lion: Nature Study and the Interpretation of a Biblical Text, from the Physiologus to Albert the Great (Vivarium: Journal for the Philosophy and Intellectual Life of the Middle Ages and Renaissance, Volume 3, number 1, 1965, page 1-23) [Journal article]

The derivation of the name myrmecoleon, ant-lion, from the biblical book of Job.

Language: English
ISSN: 0042-7543


Bruno Gerling

"De proprietatibus rerum": die Enzyklopädie des Bartholomäus Anglicus (um 1230) und deren Abschnitte zur Zahnheilkunde (Feuchtwangen: Tenner, 1991; Series: Kölner medizinhistorische Beiträge 58) [Book]

Language: German
ISBN: 3-925341-57-9


Philippe Germond

An Egyptian Bestiary (London: Thames & Hudson, 2001) [Book]

"The magnificent photographs in this volume show the incomparable richness of the pharonic fauna in all forms of artistic expression - painting, sculpture, relief carving, architectural ornamentation and hieroglyphs - ranging from astonishing realism in the depiction of birst and beasts, both wild and domesticated, with which the people of the Nile Valley came into daily contact, to hieratic stylization in portraying the pantheon of animal-headed gods and the sacred and fabulous creatures that inhabited the ancient Egyptions' devotional, funerary and magical world. The sholarly descriptions and informative captions that accompany this amazing bestiary place each animal depicted in its proper context in relation to man, to the environment and to the gods. From geese to monkeys, crocodiles to scorpions, the list is virtually endless, while the superb artistry and extraordinary range of the subject matter will open the eyes of Egyptologists and naturalists alike to a subject that has never before been so superbly displayed and explained." - publisher

Originally published as Bestiaire Egyptian in Paris.

224 p., 280 color illstrations, bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-500-51059-8; LCCN: 2001088627; LC: N7660.G43132001


Willem Pieter Gerritsen

Waar is De beestearis? (in W.P. Gerritsen, Annelies van Gijsen & Orlanda S.H. Lee, ed., School spierinkjes (Een): Kleine opstellen over Middelnederlandse artes-literatuur, Hilversum: Verloren, 1991, page 68-71) [Book article]

"Where is De beestearis?"

Discusses 13th century fragment from MS. Amsterdam, U.B., I.A.24, interpreting it as minnesang allegory; with reference to works of Willem uten Hove and Richard de Fournival.

Language: Dutch


Gervaise, Paul Meyer, ed.

Le Bestiaire de Gervaise ()

The Bestiaire of Gervaise is found in only one manuscript, British Library Additional MS. 28260. This book includes a description of the manuscript, a discussion of its relationship to the bestiary genre, some notes on the possible identity of its author, and a complete edition of the 1280 lines of verse.

Language: French


Konrad Gesner

Gesner's Curious and Fantastic Beasts (Mineola, NY: Dover, 2004) [Book]

Mostly clip art from Konrad Gesner (1516-1565).

48 p., illustrations.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-486-99577-1; DDC: 745.4; OCLC: 53392741


Konrad Gesner, Carol Belanger Grafton, ed.

Beasts & Animals in Decorative Woodcuts of the Renaissance (New York: Dover Publications, 1983; Series: Dover pictorial archive series) [Book]

61 p. of illustrations, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-486-24430-X; LCCN: 82017756; LC: NE1150.5.G47A41983; DDC: 769/.432/09419


Jennifer Getson

Monsters at the Edges of the World: Medieval Visions of the East (Southwestern University, 2002) [Web page]

"During the Medieval Ages, myths of monsters flourished, cropping up in many types of literature and art. People believed that these monsters lived on the fringes of the world, beyond the civilized, Christian world of Europe. According to traditional thought, monsters lived mostly in the East, particularly India, but as exploration progressed, monsters were also attributed to Africa, and much later to the New World. These monsters were only partially a reflection of the East itself, as they provided far more telling information about the society that produced them. Thus, Medieval monsters provided a way for the West to define themselves in opposition to those who were different, and displace their own anxieties and troubles upon the created monsters of the East." - Getson

Language: English


Getty Museum

Book of Beasts: Exhibition Tour Guide (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2019)

An audio/video tour guide to the J. Paul Getty Museum exhibition "The Book of Beasts", May 14–August 18, 2019. With video and illustrations of manuscripts and artifacts.

Language: English


The Book of Beasts: The Bestiary in the Medieval World (Exhibition) (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2019)

A description of the Getty Museum exhibition "The Book of Beasts", May 14–August 18, 2019, at the Getty Center. Numerous illustrations.

Language: English


Fantastic Beasts of the Middle Ages (Google Arts & Culture, 2019)

A short presentation based on the J. Paul Getty Museum exhibition "The Book of Beasts", May 14–August 18, 2019, at the Getty Center. Numerous illustrations.

Language: English


Ghent University

Liber Floridus (Ghent: Ghent University, 2011)

An online exhibition of the Liber Floridus by Lambert of Saint-Omer, based on the manuscript Universiteitsbibliotheek Ghent, MS 92, which is thought to be Lambert's autograph copy. Includes information on the manuscript and its origins, and on Lambert himself. Includes illustrations, a list of Liber Floridus manuscripts, and a bibliography.

Language: English, Dutch, French


Laura Gibbs

Aesop's Books: illustrated fables you can read online (Laura Gibs, 2017)

Aesop's Books, a blog where you can find illustrated fables in English and learn about full-text Aesop books online. As of July 13 2017, I've posted fables and illustrations from over 30 books in the Book Library, and there are now over 1700 illustrated fables in the Fable Library, representing over 450 different fable types. See below for more information about the Books and about the Fable Types. There's also a Frequency Listing so you can see all the fables arranged in order of "popularity" (based on how many versions I have at this site). - [Gibbs]

Language: English


Aesop's Fables (Oxford University Press, 2008)

The fables of Aesop have become one of the most enduring traditions of European culture, ever since they were first written down nearly two millennia ago. Aesop was reputedly a tongue-tied slave who miraculously received the power of speech; from his legendary storytelling came the collections of prose and verse fables scattered throughout Greek and Roman literature. First published in English by Caxton in 1484, the fables and their morals continue to charm modern readers: who does not know the story of the tortoise and the hare, or the boy who cried wolf? This new translation is the first to represent all the main fable collections in ancient Latin and Greek, arranged according to the fables' contents and themes. It includes 600 fables, many of which come from sources never before translated into English. - [Publisher]

Language: English


Aesopica: Aesop's Fables in English, Latin and Greek (Laura Gibbs, 2006+) [Web page]

This web site by Laura Gibbs has editions of Aesop's Fable) in English, Latin and Greek, including the 1484 English translation by William Caxton. There are indexes to the various fables, including the Perry index to over 500 fables. There are also illustrations from early and modern printed editions.

Language: English / Latin


Lost in a Town of Pigs: The Story of Aesop's Fables (Berkeley: University Of California, Berkeley, 1999) [Dissertation]

PhD dissertation at the University of California, Berkeley.

'Using the structuralist approaches of Propp, Permiakov, and Greimas, I define the Aesopic fable as the story of a mistake, an exemplum in which the protagonist is either a fool who makes a mistake and suffers its consequences, or a wise character who does not make a mistake. This structural analysis of the plot is able to explain the relationship between stories about animals in the natural history writers (Pliny, Plutarch, and Aelian) and similar stories about animals found in Aesop's fables. I then analyze the morals of the fables, comparing the figurative language of the morals to proverbs and riddles. As an oral folklore form, the Aesopic fable features an 'endomythium,' a moral 'inside' the fable. Promythia and epimythia, morals added before or after the fable, are features of the fable as a literary form. To illustrate different aspects of orality in the fable's morals I analyze versions of 'The Belly and the Members' fable as reported in Livy, Plutarch, and Shakespeare's Coriolanus. The promythia and epimythia start to supplant the endomythia in the verse fables of the Roman poet Phaedrus, who also reinterprets the traditional Aesopic plot structure in more ethical terms. Odo of Cheriton's medieval fables provide an explicitly Christian reinterpretation of the Aesopic tradition, while supplying the fables with allegorical interpretations similar to the allegories found in the Physiologus and bestiary tradition. I then compare Odo's allegories to the allegories of the Esopo toscano, an Italian translation of Walter of England's fables in which the animals are anthropomorphic to a greater degree than in earlier Greek or Latin fables. The dissertation contains an index listing the different versions of the fables that are analyzed in these shifting historical and literary contexts." - abstract

303 p.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-599-71161-2; PQDD: AAT9966387


Giulia Gilmore

Mermaids, sirens and Alexander the Great (London: British Library Medieval manuscripts blog, 2023; Series: 12 February 2023)

Commentary on the difference between mermaids and sirens, and Alexander the Great's encounters with them in the East.

Language: English


Miriam Giombini

Liber Floridus Lamberti canonici -- appunti per una ricerca sul codice 92 di Gand (Palimszeszt, 1999) [Digital article]

A short article on the Liber Floridus of Lambert of Saint-Omer, with reference to manuscript Universiteitsbibliotheek Gent MS 92. Contents: The text of the encyclopedia of Lambert of Saint-Omer; The author and the historical period; The illustrations.

Language: Italian


Jost Gippert

The Georgian Tradition (Brepolis, 2021; Series: Multilingual Physiologus: Studies in the Oldest Greek Recension and its Translations)

The Old Georgian version of the Physiologus is peculiar in several respects. Preserved in a codex of the late tenth century, it clearly exhibits its dependence on an Armenian Vorlage. Its exact model is not extant but can be reconstructed to a certain degree on the basis of the wording in the Georgian text. By its age, the Old Georgian version gains special importance with respect to the initial shape of the Armenian version and its relation to the Greek and the Latin Physiologus. To reveal the Old Georgian version’s impact, it may be convenient first to outline the history of its exploration and the circumstances of its transmission. - [Author]

Includes an edition of the text in Georgian and an English translation, extensive bibliography, and reproductions of some manuscript pages..

Language: English


Physiologus. Die Verarbeitung antiker Naturmythen in einem frühchristlichen Text (Studia Iranica, Mesopotamica et Anatolica, 3, 1997-98, page 161-177) [Journal article]

Der unter dem Namen 'Physiologus' bekannte Text steht innerhalb der antiken griechischen Tradition in mancherlei Hinsicht einzigartig da. Das betrifft zum einen die Frage, wer ihn verfast hat: Obwohl er gerade nach einem prasumptiven Autor, genauer nach dessen "Funktion als eines 'Naturbeschreibers', benannt ist, ist die Person dieses Autors doch bis heute in keinerWeise historisch identifiziert worden. Wir werden auf diese Problematik unten noch zu sprechen kommen. Es betrifft zum anderen die Frage, wann der Text entstanden ist. Auch wenn die bisher hierzu geauserten Ansichten durchaus divergieren, fallen die verschiedenen Ansatze doch alle in den Zeitraum zwischen dem 2. und 4. nachchristlichen Jh., so das man ihn wohl zu Recht dem Ubergang von der Antike zur Spatantike zuweisen wird. Zu berucksichtigen bleibt dabei aber, das der 'Physiologus', mehr als die meisten anderen Texte aus dieser Epoche, nicht nur zu seiner Entstehungszeit, sondern uber viele weitere Jahrhunderte hin, uber das Mittelalter bis in die fruhe Neuzeit, innerhalb des gesamten christlichen Kulturraums eine eminente Verbreitung und Bedeutung erlangt hat: Wo immer eine Sprache auf christlichem Hintergrund anfing, eine eigene schriftliche Tradition zu entwickeln, gehorte der Physiologus zu den ersten in diese Sprache ubersetzten Texten, und dementsprechend zahlreich sind seine uns uberkommenen versiones aus dem west- und ostkirchlichen Bereich1; und der Einflus des Physiologus auf die bildende Kunst im gleichen Zeitraum ist geradezu legendar zu nennen. Angesichts dieser Bedeutung erscheint es angebracht, den 'Physiologus' einen fruhchristlichen Text zu nennen; eine Bezeichnung, die jedoch nicht ohne Probleme ist, wie sich im weiteren zeigen wird." - Gippert

Language: German


Jost Gippert, Werner Abraham

The Middle High German Poetical Version of the Physiologus (TITUS, 2000) [Digital article]

The Middle High German Rhyme Version of the Physiologus on the basis of the edition Der altdeutsche Physiologus.

Die Millstatter Reimfassung und die Wiener Prosa (nebst dem lateinischen Text und dem althochdeutschen Physiologus) herausgegeben von Friedrich Maurer. Tubingen: Niemeyer, 1967. (Altdeutsche Textbibliothek, Nr. 67), S. 2-72.

Text entry by Werner Abraham, Groningen 1999-2000. TITUS version by Jost Gippert, Frankfurt a/M, 31.3.2000 / 1.6.2000.

Language: German


The Middle High German Prose Version of the Physiologus (TITUS, 2000) [Digital article]

The Middle High German Prose Version of the Physiologus on the basis of the edition Der altdeutsche Physiologus.

Die Millstatter Reimfassung und die Wiener Prosa (nebst dem lateinischen Text und dem althochdeutschen Physiologus)

herausgegeben von Friedrich Maurer. Tubingen: Niemeyer, 1967. (Altdeutsche Textbibliothek, Nr. 67), S. 2-72.

Text entry by Werner Abraham, Groningen 1999-2000. TITUS version by Jost Gippert, Frankfurt a/M, 15.4.2000 / 1.6.2000.

Language: German


Antoine Glaenzer

Catelles en relief du XIVe siècle de Cressier (Zeitschrift fur schweizerische Archaologie und Kunstgeschichte, 56:3, 1999, page 153-182) [Journal article]

Publication d'un ensemble de 96 carreaux de faience de la fin du 14e s. decouverts dans une maison de Cressier lors d'investigations menees par le Service de la Protection des Monuments et Sites du canton de Neuchatel. Ils decoraient un poale dont l'auteur propose une reconstitution. Leur analyse permet de tirer un certain nombre de conclusions quant a leur mode de fabrication et a leur iconographie. Si les animaux inspires des bestiaires medievaux occupent une place importante, le motif de la pastourelle a pu atre identifie d'apres une illustration du Codex Manesse (Heidelberg, Universitatsbibliothek, MS pal. germ. 848). Les carreaux sont tres probablement importes de Suisse alemanique.

46 illustrations. Summaries in French, German, Italian, English.

Language: French
ISSN: 0044-3476


La La tenture de la Dame à la licorne, du Bestiaires d'amours à l'ordre des tapisseries (Micrologus: Natura, scienze e societa medievali, 10, 2002, page 401-428) [Journal article]

Discusses the representation of the five senses in "The Lady with the Unicorn", one from a series of six tapestries produced at the end of the 15th century in the region of Brussels in the context of iconography of animals in bestiaries, demonstrating how the five senses open up the sixth "a la merci de la dame".

Language: French


Marion Glasscoe, Michael Swanton

Medieval Woodwork in Exeter Cathedral (Exeter: Dean and Chapter, Exeter Cathedral, 1978) [Book]

A guide to the medieval wood carving in Exeter Cathedral, including misericords, bench-ends, other decorations. Includes many animal carvings. Limited commentary.

35 pp., black & white photographs.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-9503320-1-1; LC: NK9744.E93G58


Abigail L. Glen

An indication of the rights of woman: a feminist text-image analysis of the 'Response du Bestiaire' (Glasgow: University of Glasgow, 2014)

My thesis presents the first feminist text-image analysis of Bibliothèque Nationale de France, fr. 412. This manuscript contains illustrated versions of Richard de Fournival's 'Bestiaire d’amour' and an anonymous 'Response' to it, which is written from the perspective of a female member of the nobility. The author of the 'Response' is unknown. My ultimate aim is to ascertain whether the images that accompany these bestiary images support or detract from what I consider to be the pro-woman nature of the Response text.

The 'Response' has been considered one of the first secular proto-feminist works in Europe, but there is no evidence to confirm the identity of its author. In the Introduction, I briefly discuss the scholarship on this subject, before considering the various socio-political issues that may have influenced the composition of this text and a modern critical reading of it. To do so, I distinguish between the Lady (a gendered fictional construct with distinct characteristics) and the Response-author (the actual author of the work, whose biography is unknown). I give a general history of the bestiary, as well as of the 'Bestiaire d’amour' and its author, Richard de Fournival. In later chapters, I present a feminist text-image study of the Response, analysing fifteen of a possible forty-eight entries.

Ultimately, this study aims to uncover any misogyny to be found in the images, or indeed, any pro-female content. Through the analysis of the animal exempla, I ask: How does the artist/author manipulate traditional bestiary iconography? How does the artist/author use or alter the iconography used in BnF fr. 412’s 'Bestiaire'’s illustrations? How is the language of gesture used to portray information in the images? And above all: if the Lady is who she says she is, can we state that she is truly pro-woman, and in what ways?

[From the thesis abstract]

130 pages; illustrations (some colour); MPhil.(R) thesis submitted to English Language, School of Critical Studies, College of Arts, University of Glasgow.

Language: English
glathesis: 2014-6214


Robert James Glendinning

A critical study of the Old High German Physiologus and its influence (Winnepeg: University of Manitoba, 1959) [Dissertation]

MA dissertation at the University of Manitoba.

172 p., illustrations.

Language: English
OCLC: 27116258


Stephen E. Glickman, A. Platt

The Spotted Hyena from Aristotle to the Lion King: Reputation is Everything (Social Research, 62, 1995) [Journal article]

Language: English


Stephen O. Glosecki

Moveable Beasts: The Manifold Implications of Early Germanic Animal Imagery (in Nona C. Flores, ed., Animals in the Middle Ages: A Book of Essays (Garland Medieval Casebooks, 13), New York: Garland, 1996) [Book article]

"...poses the key question about visual images of animals during the Middle Ages: does the image mean something, or is it 'just for pretty'? Furthermore, if we believe the image does signify something beyond its obvious literal representation, which of the many possible meanings do we choose? And finally, how does the meaning change - that is, 'move,' in the author's own words - as its cultural context shifts?" - Flores, Introduction

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8153-1315-2


Belita Goad

Bestiary influences upon medieval demonography (Louisville: University of Louisville, 2004) [Dissertation]

Thesis (M.A.), Department of Art History, University of Louisville.

viii, 62 leaves, illustrations (some color), bibliographical

Language: English
OCLC: 61346780


Allen H. Godbey

The Unicorn in the Old Testament (The American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literatures, Vol. 56, No. 3. (July), 1939, page 256-296) [Journal article]

The author begins with an account of an American biologist who in an experiment on a new-born calf managed to move its horn buds to the center of its forehead, where they eventually grew into a single horn. The biologist claimed to have created the unicorn. The author then examines other "artificial" unicorns through history, looks at the unicorn legend and the possible sources in real animals, and finally provides Old Testament references to the unicorn.

Language: English


Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Thomas James Arnold, trans.

The Story of Reynard the Fox (New York: The Heritage Press, 1954) [Book]

A verse translation of the original German poem Reineke Fuchs by Goethe. The German version used by Goethe, produced in Berlin in 1794, was based on the Low German text of 1498, which was itself likely derived from a Flemish version of the early thirteenth century. It is here rendered into rhymed couplets, and illustrated with twentieth century wood engavings by Fritz Eichenberg.

248 pp. Introduction by Edward Lazare.

Language: English


Edmund Goldsmid

Un-Natural History, or Myths of Ancient Science (Edinburgh: 1886) [Book]

"Being a Collection of Curious Tracts on the Basilisk, Unicorn, Phoenix, Behemoth or Leviathan, Dragon, Giant Spider, Tarantula, Chameleons, Satyrs, Homines Caudati, &c. Now first translated from the Latin and edited, with notes and illustrations"

"It has seemed to me that the following tracts, on myths so strange, yet so widely credited in ancient times, could not fail to prove interesting, especially as the tracts themselves, written in the 17th century by German savants, and printed (very badly, by the way) at Wittemberg, Frankfort-on-Oder, &c., are quite unknown, not only in this country, but even in the land of their production. ... The myths treated of in the following treatises are: the Basilisk, Unicorn, Phoenix, Behemoth, Dragon, Giant Spider, Tarantula, Chameleons, Satyrs, Tailed Men, and the Shining Lilies of Palestine. ... George Caspard Kirchmayer, the author of the first six tracts, was born at Uffeinheim, in Franconia, in 1635. He became Professor at Wittemberg, and was a Fellow of the Royal Societies of London and Vienna. ...The six Treatises here translated and printed, under the collective title of Hexas disputationum Zoologicaram, at Wittemberg, in 1661. ... Hermann Grube was born at Lubeck, in 1633. He studied at Leyden, and became Professor of Medicine at Frankfort. He is said to have published several medical works, none of which are now ever read. His treatise, De Ictu Tarantulae, here translated, is, I believe, quite unknown to Bibliographers. It is a small tract of some 90 pages, published at Frankfort in 1679... Martin Schoochius was born at Utrecht in 1614. After studying at that University he became successively Professor of Languages, of Eloquence and History, of Physic, of Logic, and of Practical Philosophy at Utrecht, Deventer, Groningen, and lastly at Frankfort-on-Oder, where he died in 1669. ... The treatise which is here translated seems utterly unknown to all Bibliographers. It is a small 4to, abominably printed on atrocious paper, and bears the imprint of Frankfort-on-Oder, 1680. The only copy I know of is the one in my possession. ... To me these learned and eccentric tracts have ever been extremely interesting. I trust they may prove so to my readers, and I have tried to increase their value by tracing out in the notes the various allusions of the text, and amplifying from such sources as I have had at my disposal, the subjects suggested rather than dwelt upon by these sage and quaint old writers of the 17th century." - introduction

Language: English


Maximilian Goldstaub

Die Entwicklung des lateinischen Physiologus (Verhandlungen der 41. Philologen-Versammlung, 1892)

We still seem to be under the indelible imprint of the views that have taken firm root as a result of the efforts of the Renaissance era, when we generally behave in a completely negative manner towards the medieval literary works, as creations of a wild and unpalatable scholasticism. But what was once explicable and justified can no longer be so after a wonderful reversal of circumstances: at that time people rushed with fiery enthusiasm that surpassed everything to the inexhaustible source of eternally youthful beauty ... It strikes us when we discover the roots of a product of a truly medieval spirit in the classical soil of Hellenism, where it, a product of a truly international cultural life, must have played a significant role in one form or another in the intellectual life of the people before it became Christian. Authors exploited them for the purposes of their still young church and made the material, which occupied the imagination and the thinking of the people in this half-popular, half-scientific direction, available to a dogmatic-ethical tendency. This strange book is the Physiologus, a colorful mixture of fables from the animal world as well as from the area of plants and the valuable or healing stems, which were viewed as types according to the symbolic world view of that time and, be it in a mystical interpretation of Christ, the devil or the Church, be it in an allegorical-moral reference to humans, were equipped with religious accessories. - [Author]

Language: German


Der Physiologus und seine Weiterbildung, besonders in der lateinischen und in der byzantinsichen Litteratur (Leipzig: Dieterich, 1899; Series: Philologus; Bd. 8, H. 4.Supplementband) [Book]

...for my purpose it suffices, ... to emphasize that natural history in general and zoology, with which I am primarily concerned here, have in particular throughout most of the Middle Ages stood almost exclusively in the service of the symbolic world view of Christianity. The animal symbolism in the Bible ... gave the most immediate and strongest stimulus to that mystical-symbolic or moralizing character of Medieval Zoology. - [Author]

404 pp., index.

Language: German


Physiologus-Fabelein über Brüten des Vogels Strauss (Festschrift Adolf Tobler, 1905, page 153-190) [Journal article]

Reprinted in book form in Braunschweig by G. Westermann, 1905.

Language: German
OCLC: 43778140


Zwei Beschworungs-Artikel der Physiologus-Literatur (Halle: Max Niemeyer, 1895; Series: Abhandlungen Herrn Prof. Dr. Adolf Tobler zur Feier seiner funfundzwanzigja hrigen Thatigkeit als ordentlicher Professor an der Universitat Berlin)

The medieval folk book, which is present in almost all literatures of the East and West and is known under the name Physiologus, has the object of giving certain stories from the natural kingdom a typological-mystical, and later usually an allegorical-moral, interpretation. Although the natural-historical and legendary element from the animal kingdom plays the main role, the plant kingdom has not been neglected either, just as the author has not refrained from making the magical powers of certain gemstones serve his purposes. So the 4th oldest Physiologus contains at least beginnings of the literature on medicine and wonder books that go under the name of herbal and lapidary that played an important role in the Middle Ages. Finally the oldest Physiologus has a few examples of a genus that is closely related to the wonderful effects of certain stones against illness, demons and evil creatures; these are cases of medical effects of animal components, which is later mentioned in bestiaries and encyclopedic works ... but is particularly well represented in the collections of miracle and secret remedy recipes. - [Author]

Language: German


Maximilian Goldstaub, ed., Richard Wendriner, ed.

Ein Tosco-Venezianischer Bestiarius (Halle: M. Niemeyer, 1892) [Book]

The Tuscan bestiary. Text of the Bestiary in Italian; introduction and notes in German. The manuscript text is from Biblioteca Civica di Padova, C.R.M.248.

The Italian bestiary manuscripts described (the letter in [brackets] is the designated code for the manuscript):

  1. Biblioteca Civica di Padova, C.R.M.248 [P]
  2. Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Ashb.649 [L1]
  3. Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Plut.90 inf.47 [L2]
  4. Biblioteca Riccardiana, Cod. 2260 R.IV 4 [R1]
  5. Biblioteca Riccardiana, Cod. 2281 [R2]
  6. Biblioteca Riccardiana, Cod. 1357 P. III. 4[R3]
  7. Biblioteca Riccardiana, Cod. 2183 [R4]
  8. Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale di Firenze, Cod. Magliabechiano XXI.4.135 [St]

Language: German
LC: PQ4265; OCLC: 1960557


Maria Isabel Rebelo Goncalves

Livro das aves (Lisboa: Edições Colibri, 1999; Series: Obras clássicas da literatura portuguesa 61) [Book]

The De avibus of Hugh de Fouilloy (Hugo de Folieto).Text in Latin and Portuguese on facing pages; introductory matter in Portuguese. "Inicialmente atribuido a Hugo de S. Vitor, mas impresso por Migne como obra de Hugo de Folieto. ... O chamado Livro das Aves e uma copia do livro I (De auibus ou Liber auium) do tratado De bestiis et aliis rebus (sec. XII). Edicao do texto latino a partir dos manuscritos portugueses, traducao do latim e introducao por Maria Isabel Rebelo Goncalves. O chamado Livro das Aves e uma copia do livro I (De auibus ou Liber auium) do tratado De bestiis et aliis rebus (sec. XII)."

195 p., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Portuguese
ISBN: 972-772-123-0; LC: PA8275.B4; OCLC: 46326925


Jan Gondowicz, Adam Pisarek

Zoologia fantastyczna uzupelniona z dodaniem ukladu systematycznego Adama Pisarka (Warsaw: Wydawn. Male, 1995) [Book]

Animals, Mythical. Bestiaries.

144 pp., illustrations.

Language: Polish
ISBN: 83-903609-0-X; LCCN: 96-178853; LC: GR825.G581995; OCLC: 36292542


Fremiot Hernandez Gonzalez

El Episodio de la Ballena en la Navigatio Sancti Brendani y su Precedente en el Physiologus (Fortunatae: Revista canaria de Filología, Cultura y Humanidades Clásicas, 1993; Series: 5)

This paper is an attempt to make a comparative study between the episode of the whale in the Saint Brendan Legend and the description of that cetacean in the Physiologus. The author translates and confronts some texts from both works and from the first voyage of Sindbad in The Thousand and One Nights.

Language: Spanish


Kristen Goodhue

Science, Superstition and the Goose Barnacle ( Shorelines: Life and science at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center , 2013)

The most bizarre scientific legends sometimes come from completely ordinary creatures. Take, for example, the medieval legend of a tree that gave birth to birds. - [Author]

Language: English


Natalie Jayne Goodison

Introducing the Medieval Swan (Cardiff, Wales: University Of Wales Press, 2022; Series: Medieval Animals)

What comes to mind when we think of swans? Likely their beauty in domestic settings, their preserved status, their association with royalty, and possibly even the phrase ‘swan song’. This book explores the emergence of each of these ideas, starting with an examination of the medieval swan in natural history, exploring classical writings and their medieval interpretations and demonstrating how the idea of a swan’s song developed. The book then proceeds to consider literary motifs of swan-to-human transformation, particularly the legend of the Knight of the Swan. Although this legend is known today largely through Wagner’s opera, it was a best-seller in the Middle Ages, and courts throughout Europe strove to be associated as descendants of this Swan Knight. Consequently, the swan was projected as an icon of courtly and eventual royal status. The book’s third chapter looks at the swan as icon of the Lancasters, particularly important during the reign of Richard II and the War of the Roses, and the final chapter examines the swan as an important item of feasting, focusing on cookery and husbandry to argue that over time the right to keep swans became an increasingly restricted right controlled by the English crown. Each of the swan’s medieval associations are explored as they developed over time to the modern day. - [Publisher]

Language: English
ISBN: 978-1-78683-839-1


Jan Goossens, ed., Timothy Sodmann, ed.

Third Annual Beast Epic, Fable and Fabliau Colloquium, Munster 1979: Proceedings (Cologne: Bohlau Verlag, 1981; Series: Niederdeutsche Studien, Bd. 30) [Book]

Proceedings of the Third International Beast Epic, Fable and Fabliau Colloquium, Munster, 1979.

Text in English, French or German.

538 pp., 16 p. of plates, illustrations.

Language: English
ISBN: 3-412-04881-X; DDC: 839.4; OCLC: 8361681


Silvia Gorla

Some Remarks about the Latin Physiologus Extracts Transmitted in the Liber Glossarum (Brill, 2018; Series: Mnemosyne: A Journal of Classical Studies (Volume 71, Issue 1))

This paper is aimed at describing the presence of the Latin Physiologus in the Liber glossarum. After a brief introduction to the Latin Physiologus and a census of the Liber Glossarum items drawn on it, two noteworthy attitudes of the Liber Glossarum are outlined: distrust in the Physiologus stories, clearly expressed at least for the items up to section FE, and no interest in allegorical and moral comments. Finally, a couple of Liber Glossarum entries from the Latin Physiologus (AS 171 Aspides, PE 217 Pelicanus) are analysed in comparison with the text given directly by the existing versions of the Latin Physiologus: the Liber Glossarum comes out as an important means of transmission of ancient stages of the Latin Physiologus text which would be otherwise lost. - [Abstract]

Language: English
1568-525X; DOI: 10.1163/1568525X-12342198


Gossuin de Metz, William Caxton

Mirrour of the World (Westminster: William Caxton, 1481, 1490)

A complete facsimile of a 1481 copy of William Caxton's Mirrour of the World, an Early English translation of L'image du monde by Gossuin de Metz. An edition/transcription with introduction and notes was produced by O. H. Prior.

Language: English


Gossuin de Metz, Oliver H. Prior, ed.

L'image du monde de Maitre Gossouin (Lausanne: Librairie Payot / Université de Lausaunne, 1913)

An edition of the L'Image du Monde by Gossuin de Metz, based on Bibliothèque Nationale de France, fr. 574. With an introduction and notes by O.H. Prior.

Language: French


Lise Gotfredsen

The Unicorn (New York: Abbeville Press, 1999) [Book]

This wide ranging cultural history traces the remarkable interpretations and myths that have grown up around the unicorn in art, science, religion, and literature. - [Publisher]

Chapters include: The Unicorn and the Orient; The Classical Inheritance; Biblical Texts; Physiologus; Pictorial Art in the Middle Ages; The Unicorn and the Huntsmen; The Unicorn of the Troubadors; The Flemish Tapestries; The Lady with the Unicorn; etc.

192 pp., color and black and white illustrations on almost every pages, bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-7892-0595-5


K. H. Gottert

Überlieferungsprobmatik und Wirkungsgeschichte des mittelhochdeutchen Reinhart Fuchs (in Aspects of the Medieval Animal Epic, Louvain: Leuven University Press, 1975, page 67-84) [Book article]

"Die Beschaftigung mit der mittelalterlichen Tierepik hat stets Anlas gegeben, die europaische Tradition im ganzen einzubeziehen. Fur den mittelhochdeutschen Reinhart Fuchs (RF) Heinrichs des glichezare gab es in diesem Punkt bekanntlich heftige Kontroversen, besonders was sein Verhaltnis zum franzosischen Roman de Renart (RdR) angeht. Nun ist zwar heute klar, wer hier der Geber bzw. der Nehmer war, weniger sicher durfte man allerdings in der Beurteilung der Frage sein, wie die merkwurdig isolierte Stellung des RF in seiner Verwandtschaft zu erklaren ist. ..." - Gottert

Language: German


Richard Gottheil

Barnacle-Goose (Jewish Encyclopedia, 1901)

A curious notion prevailed in the Middle Ages, that this bird (Branta leucopsis) was generated from the barnacle, a shell-fish growing on a flexible stem, and adhering to loose timber, bottoms of ships, etc. ... The earliest trace of this fable in Jewish literature seems to be in the "'I??ur" of Isaac ben Abba Mari of Marseilles (about 1170). ... An anonymous Hebrew translator of the French cosmography called "Image du Monde," who compiled his work in 1245, speaks of geese growing on trees in Ireland and of people with tails in Brittany. He is the first Jewish author to locate the birds on Irish shores. - [Authors]

Language: English


The Greek Physiologus and Its Oriental Translations (Chicago: The American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literatures, 1899; Series: Volume 15, Number 2)

A review, with additional commentary on the <#P Physiologs>, of Der griechische Physiologus und seine orientalischen Ubersetzungen by Emil Peters. Includes a chart showing the "Pedigree of the Physiologus Literature" and some additional bibliography.

Language: English


Dagmar Gottschall

Konrad von Megenbergs Buch von den Natürlichen Dingen: Ein Dokument deutschsprachiger Albertus Magnus-Rezeption im 14. Jahrhundert (Leiden; Boston: Brill, 2004; Series: Studien und Texte zur Geistesgeschichte des Mittelalters, 83) [Book]

"This study offers a new interpretation of the Book of Natural Things, a major work by Konrad von Megenberg (1309-1374) written in the vernacular around 1350 in Regensburg. For the first time, the work is put into the context of the 14th-century Faculty of Arts. In addition, this interpretation draws on Megenbergs 8-year teaching career as professor of natural philosophy in Paris and his thematically similar writings in Latin. The volume describes Konrad of Megenbergs intellectual profile and analyzes his process of creating a vernacular scientific discourse based on Latin sources. Albert the Greats paraphrases of Aristotle, as well as the neoplatonic writings of ps.-Albertus Magnus, emerge as significant in positioning of the Book of Natural Things within its philosophical and cultural context." - publisher

Language: German
ISBN: 90-04-14015-8; LC: QH41; DDC: 508; OCLC: 55488154


Charles Gould

Mythical Monsters (London: W. H. Allen & Co., 1886) [Book]

"It would have been a bold step indeed for anyone, some thirty years ago, to have thought of treating the public to a collection of stories ordinarily reputed fabulous, and of claiming for them the consideration due to genuine realities, or to have advocated tales, time-honoured as fictions, as actual facts; and those of the nursery as being, in many instances, legends, more or less distorted, descriptive of real beings or events. Now-a-days it is a less hazardous proceeding. The great era of advanced opinion initiated by Darwin, which has seen, in the course of a few years, a larger progress in knowledge in all departments of science, than decades of centuries preceding it, has among other changes, worked a complete revolution in the estimation of the value of folk-lore... I have, therefore, but little hesitation in gravely proposing to submit that many of the so-called mythical animals, which throughout long ages and in all nations have been the fertile subjects of fiction and fable, come legitimately within the scope of plain matter-of-fact Natural History, and that they may be considered, not as the outcome of exuberant fancy, but as creatures which really once existed, and of which, unfortunately, only imperfect and inaccurate descriptions have filtered down to us, probably very much refracted, through the mists of time. I propose to follow, for a certain distance only, the path which has been pursued in the treatment of myths by mythologists, so far only, in fact, as may be necessary to trace out the homes and origin of those stories which in their later dress are incredible; deviating from it to dwell upon the possibility of their having preserved to us, through the medium of unwritten Natural History, traditions of creatures once co-existing with man, some of which are so weird and terrible as to appear at first sight to be impossible. I propose stripping them of those supernatural characters with which a mysteriously implanted love of the wonderful has invested them, and to examine them, as at the present day we are fortunately able to do, by the lights of the modern sciences of Geology, Evolution, and Philology." - Gould

Reprinted by: Crescent Books, New York, c1989 (ISBN is for the reprint).

407 pp., illustrations.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-517-68636-8


Robert Gould

The Case for the Sea-Serpent (London: P. Allan, 1930) [Book]

Of the many and varied scientific mysteries for which Cdr. R. T. Gould is known, the one subject for which he is, even today, most closely associated is the question of the existence of sea serpents. Gould's first paper on the subject was given to the Sette of Odd Volumes on 25 March 1925, in which he cites twelve cases of positive and well-documented sightings. Having thus prepared the ground for further research, and ‘staked his claim’ to the subject, he began planning a larger account in early 1929 and was ready to embark on writing immediately after the typescript for Enigmas was finished that summer. This chapter presents a short summary of the book's contents and Gould's conclusions, along with a few comments by others, better placed to judge the quality of Gould's work on the subject. - [Review]

Language: English


Georg Graf

Der georgische Physiologus (Caucasica, 2, 1906, page 93-114) [Journal article]

Language: German


Edward Kidder Graham

The De universo of Hrabanus Maurus : a mediaeval encyclopedia (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1934) [Book]

Dissertation / Thesis (M.A.) at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1934.

Language: English
OCLC: 37991904


Victor Graham

The Pelican as Image and Symbol (Revue de litérature comparée, 36, 1962, page 233-243) [Journal article]

Language: English


Ernest-Daniel Grand

L'Image du monde, poème didactique du XIIIe siècle (Revue des langues romanes, 1893-1894; Series: 37)

A study of L'Image du monde by Gossuin de Metz. "Research on the classification of the manuscripts of the first redaction".

Language: French


Robert M. Grant

Early Christians and Animals (London: Routledge, 1999) [Book]

...examines the significance of animals in early Christian thought, tradition, text and art. ...explores the diverse sources from the encyclopedic cataloging of Aristotle and Pliny to the Biblical story of the snake in the Garden of Eden, the Roman letter of Clement drawing on the fabulous phoenix as proof of the resurrection of Christ, and the apocryphal Acts of the Apostles with their exotic tales of friendly lions and considerate insects, through to the fanciful tales collected in the Physiologus and finally to the systematic studies of animals in Isidore of Seville's Etymologies. ...provides fresh translations of these key sources, namely the Physiologus, Basil's Homilies, and Isidore's Etymologies... illustrations from various illuminated manuscripts and from the Physiologus..." - [Cover]

213 pp., 22 illustrations, index, bibliography

Language: English
ISBN: 0-415-20204-3


Pamela Gravestock

Did imaginary animals exist? (in Debra Hassig, ed., The Mark of the Beast: The Medieval Bestiary in Art, Life, and Literature, New York: Garland, 1999, page 119-139) [Book article]

Explores to what extent medieval people believed in the existence of mythological monsters and fabulous creatures found in bestiaries and other art forms.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8153-2952-0


Miranda Green

Animals in Celtic Life and Myth (London: Routledge, 1992) [Book]

Green examines the intimate relationship between the Celts and animals, covering their crucial role in the Celtic economy, in hunting and warfare, in art and literature and in religion and ritual. The book covers the period between 800 BC and 400 AD.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-415-05030-8


Nile Green

Ostrich Eggs and Peacock Feathers: Sacred Objects as Cultural Exchange between Christianity and Islam (Al-Masaq: Islam and the Medieval Mediterranean, 18:1 (March), 2006, page 27 - 78) [Journal article]

This article uses the wide dispersal of ostrich eggs and peacock feathers among the different cultural contexts of the Mediterranean and beyond into the Indian Ocean world to explore the nature and limits of cultural inheritance and exchange between Christianity and Islam. These avian materials previously possessed symbolic meaning and material value as early as the pre-dynastic period in Egypt, as well as amid the early cultures of Mesopotamia and Crete. The main early cultural associations of the eggs and feathers were with death/resurrection and kingship respectively, a symbolism that was passed on into early Christian and Muslim usage. Mercantile, religious and political links across the premodern Mediterranean meant that these items found parallel employment all around the Mediterranean littoral, and beyond it, in Arabia, South Asia and Africa. As an essay in the uses of material culture in mapping cultural exchange and charting the eclectic qualities of popular religiosity, the article provides a wide-ranging survey of the presence of these objects, from their visual appearance in Renaissance paintings to their hanging in the shrines of Indo-Muslim saints. A final section draws conclusions on the relationship between shared objects, cultural boundaries and the writing of history.

Language: English
ISSN: 0950-3110; DOI: 10.1080/09503110500222328


D. C. Greetham

The Concept of Nature in Bartholomaeus Anglicus (Journal of the History of Ideas, 41:4 (October-December), 1980, page 663-677) [Journal article]

"It has long been taken for granted that Bartholomaeus Anglicus' encyclopedia, De Proprietatibus Rerum, was probably among the most influential of all reference works in the Middle Ages. ... the several earlier versions (in Latin and other languages) have been shown to have exerted a wide-ranging effect on numerous important late medieval and early renaissance authors. ... Written by one of the most learned of Biblical commentators as a simplified analysis of patristic exegesis on the nature of the universe-from God down to rocks-and having as its immediate readers the Franciscan teaching friars, perhaps the most educationally influential of all orders in the thirteenth century, DPR is to the modern researcher one of the most important reference works on popular medieval learning and can tell us a great deal about the ordinary medieval mind as it considered both the wonders of nature and the theoretical interpretation of these wonders as argued by the Church Fathers." - author

Language: English


Tom Greeves, Sue Andrew, Chris Chapman

The Three Hares - A Curiosity Worth Regarding (Devon, UK: Skerryvore Productions Ltd)

From fifteenth-century rural churches in deepest Devon to sixth-century cave temples on the edge of the Gobi desert in China, this new book follows its three authors - Tom Greeves, Sue Andrew and Chris Chapman - over a period of twenty-five years or more, on the tantalising trail of a mysterious medieval motif. The motif - three hares running in a circle sharing three ears which form a triangle at the centre of the design - is a paradox, for although only three ears are depicted each beast has two. Along the way, a modern Devon myth is exposed, and the Three Hares in the sacred art of Christianity, Judaism and Buddhism are explored, and tentatively explained, before the trail leads into the Islamic world, and the great Mongol Empire. The creative spirit which gave form to the Three Hares in the medieval period, and which survived conflict and conquest, manifests itself in modern times and the inspirational work of contemporary craftspeople is presented. Contributions from specialist authors on puzzles, geometry, and number bring the book full circle. The book is richly illustrated with photographs of people and place, and of exquisite, rare and precious artefacts held in private collections. - [Publisher]

Language: English


Tom Greeves, Sue Andrew, Chris Chapman

The Three Hares Project (The Three Hares Project, 2018)

The Three Hares Project is researching and documenting an ancient symbol of three hares or rabbits running in a circle and joined by their ears which form a triangle at the centre of the design. The symbol is a puzzle for each creature appears to have two ears yet, between them, they share only three ears. The Project has revealed the motif to be an extraordinary and ancient archetype, stretching across diverse religions and cultures, many centuries and many thousands of miles. It is part of the shared medieval heritage of Europe and Asia (Buddhism, Islam, Christianity and Judaism) yet still inspires creative work among contemporary artists. - [Introduction]

Language: English


Gerald K. Gresseth

The Myth of Alcyone (Transactions and Proceedings of the American Philological Association, 95, 1964, page 88-98) [Journal article]

"The essentials of the myth of Alcyone as reported in the handbooks of mythology are: Alcyone married Ceyx, son of the Morning Star, and they were changed into birds, she into a halcyon, he into another sea-fowl called keyx, because of their impiety (they called themselves Zeus and Hera) or because he was drowned at sea and she mourned for him so piteously that the gods released her. ... I would like now to present my own interpretation, which does not account for everything in the story but at least attempts to account for the main features of this myth and to indicate how in all probability they came to be related to each other. Briefly stated, my view is that in comparative myth the sun is frequently symbolized as a bird; further, that, as in the case of the Phoenix, birds in myth often renew themselves. In the myth of Alcyone these motifs were combined to form a story of the rebirth of the sun at the time of the winter solstice." - author

Language: English


Denis Grivot

Le Bestiaire de la Cathedrale d'Autun (Lyon: Ange Michel, 1954/1973) [Book]

38 pages with black and white photos of the architectural beast adorments like gargoyles and griffins, beasts and monsters.

Language: French


Christa Grössinger

Carlisle Cathedral Misericords: Style and Iconography (in Michael McCarthy and David Weston, ed., Carlisle and Cumbria: Roman and Medieval Architecture, Art and Archaeology (The British Archaeological Association: Conference Transactions XXVII for 2001), Leeds: Maney Publishing, 2004, page 199-213) [Book article]

"In this article I will attempt to present the latest thoughts on the misericords at Carlisle Cathedral. The style of the misericords is characterised, and comparisons are made with others in the north of England, in order to discover influences and similarities. The iconography, with its dependency on the Bestiary, is examined; the meaning of other scenes is commented on, and they are interpreted in relationship to their audience in the choir." - Grossinger

The date of the misericords is early 15th-century, probably installed under William Strickland, bishop of Carlisle 1400-19. With 20 illustrations.

Language: English
ISBN: 1-902653-90-4


English Misericords of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries and their relationship to manucsript illuminations (Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, 38, 1975, page 97-108) [Journal article]

"This article sets out to examine the relationship between misericords and manuscripts, while bearing in mind a parallel approach in other arts such as stone carving or embroidery and tiles. ... To sum up the development of misericords, the earliest tend to apply foliage patterns or a combination of foliage and dragons - as in twelfth-century manuscripts. The beginnings of marginal drawings seem to coincide with the flourishing of misericord decorations; and starting with the misericords at Ely the carvers make an attempt to follow the achievements of manuscript illuminators more closely by enlarging upon their themes. ... While some of the more sophisticated masters may have been able to draw from manuscript illumination direct, much of their information probably travelled via sketchbooks and examples seen in the vicinity." - Grossinger

Illustrated with numerous black & white photographs of misericords and manuscripts.

Language: English


The World Upside-Down: English Misericords (London: Harvey Miller Publishers, 1997) [Book]

"The first part of this book describes the development of misericords, comparing Continental examples with Egnlish ones and tracing the influences of illuminated manuscripts and prints. The author discusses the working practices of the carvers, the meaning of the subjects and the transmission of ideas from one center to another. In the second part, which is organised thematically, the iconography of the misericords is examined in greater depth and local variations are explained. ... Fully illustrated with new, specially commissioned photographs and with a map giving the location of all misericords mentioned..." - cover copy

Includes a section on bestiary stories and images as used on misericords.

192 pp., 270 photographic illustrations, map, bibliography, index.

Language: English
ISBN: 1-872501-64-8


Klaus Grubmüller

Überlegungen zum Wahrheitsanspruch des Physiologus im Mittelalter (Frühmittelalterliche Studien: Jahrbuch des Instituts für Frühmittelalterforschung der Universität Münster, 12, 1978, page 160-177) [Journal article]

Language: German


Christo Gruncharov, Bogdan B. Athanassov

A Middle English Reader (Veliko Tirnovo: Cyril and Methodius University) [Book]

Includes the Middle English bestiary (Physiologus).

Language: English
LCCN: 78352401; LC: PR1120.M53; DDC: 821/.1/08


Angelo de Gubernatis

Zoological Mythology; or The Legends of Animals (London: Trubner & Co., 1872) [Book]

Language: English


H. A. Guerber

Legends of the Middle Ages: narrated with special reference to literature and art (New York: American Book Company, 1896) [Book]

Includes a version of the fables of Reynard the Fox.

Language: English
LC: PN683.G85


Nilda Guglielmi

El fisiólogo: bestiario medieval (Madrid: Eneida, 2002; Series: Colección Bestiarios 9) [Book]

184 p., illustrations, bibliography.

Language: Spanish
ISBN: 84-95427-72-9; LCCN: 2003441286


Theobaldi — Physiologus, éd. avec introduction, traduction et commentaire par P. T. Eden (Cahiers de Civilisation Médiévale, 1974; Series: 17-66)

A review (with commentary and additional notes) of Theobaldi 'Physiologus' with introduction, critical apparatus, translation and commentary by P.T. Eden.

Language: French


Guillaume le Clerc, George C. Druce, trans.

The Bestiary of Guillaume le Clerc (Ashford: Headly Brothers, Invicta Press, 1936) [Book]

Printed for private circulation. A translation into English of the work originally written in 1210-1211. Extremely rare.

Includes black and white photographs of pages from the original. Based on Reinisch's edition.

110 p., plates, facsimiles.

Language: English
LC: PQ1483.G7; LCCN: 39000139; OCLC: 2290751


Guillaume le Clerc, C. Hippeau, ed.

Le Bestiaire Divin de Guillaume Clerc de Normandie (Caen: Chez A. Hardel, Imprimeur-Libraire, 1852) [Book]

Trouvere du XIIIe siecle; publie d'apres les manuscrits de la Bibliotheque national avec une introd. sur les bestiaires, volucraires et lapidaires du Moyen Age consideres dans leurs rapport avec la symbolique chretienne (Published according to the manuscripts of the National Library, with an introduction on the bestiaries, volucraries and lapidaries of the Middle Ages, considered in their relationship with Christian symbolism).

Reprinted by: Slatkine Reprints, Geneva, 1970.

323 pp., bibliography.

Language: French
LCCN: 76-506418; LC: PQ1483.G7; OCLC: 38128211


Guillaume le Clerc, Robert Reinsch, ed.

Le Bestiaire: Das Thierbuch des normannischen Dichters Guillaume le Clerc, zum ersten Male vollstandig nach den andschriften von London, Paris und Berlin (Leipzig: O. R. Reisland, 1892; Series: Altfranzosische Bibliothek. Bd. 14) [Book]

An edition of the Bestiary of Guillaume le Clerc. Based on Egerton MS 613, collated with c. 20 other manuscripts. "Based on the manuscripts from London, Paris and Berlin".

With and introduction, extensive notes and glossary edited by Dr. Robert Reinsch.

Language: Old French / German
LCCN: 03029044; LC: PQ1983.G7; DDC: 381.45; OCLC: 6894551


Guillaume le Clerc, Stanford Libraries

Guillaume le Clerc de Normandie’s Bestiary (From the Page, 2021)

During the 2021 IUB Transcribathon (April 15-17, 2021), five teams will collaborate to transcribe a copy of Guillaume le Clerc de Normandie's early thirteenth-century Bestiary, which details the appearance and habits of a series of real and fantastical creatures, as well as moral lessons they each can teach us. This copy, from the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, fr. 24428, is beautifully illuminated and in a lovely legible bookhand. - [Web site]

Language: French/English


Edmund J. Guillezet

A comparison of the physical characteristics and allegories of animals in the bestiaries of Philippe de Thaun and of Guillaume le Clerc (Washington, D.C.: Catholic University of America, 1937) [Dissertation]

Thesis (M.A.--French) at the Catholic University of America, 1937.

53 leaves, bibliography. Catholic University masters dissertation number 2474.

Language: English
LC: PC13.C3G84


Jacques Guilmain

Zoomorphic Decoration and the Problem of the Sources of Mozarabic Illumination (Speculum, 35:1 (January), 1960, page 17-38) [Journal article]

An examination of the character and sources of the animal decoration found in 9th to 11th century Mozarabic manuscripts of Spain. The relationship of these decorations with those of northern Europe is discussed. Includes comparative llustrations from the decorations in Mozarabic and northern European manuscripts and other artwork.

Language: English


J. P. Gumbert, P. M. Vermeer

An unusual Yogh in the Bestiary manuscript - a palaeographical note (Medium Aevum, 40:1, 1971, page 56-59) [Journal article]

A discussion of the use of the 'yogh' character in British Library, Arundel MS 292, which is differentiated from the letter 'g'.

"A tentative conclusion would be that the script of Arundel 292 is a result of an attempt (single-handed, or restricted to a very small group) to lessen the graphemic distance between vernacular and Latin script, by choosing or creating shapes for the typically English graphemes which are as close as possible to Latin ones." - authors

Language: English
ISSN: 0025-8385


M. Gysseling

Corpus van Middelnederlandse teksten (tot en met het jaar 1300) ('s-Gravenhage: M. Nijhoff, 1981; Series: Reeks II: Literaire handschriften) [Book]

Contains a transcription of Der Naturen Bloeme by Jacob van Maerlant (volume 2, pages 16-416).

"Der naturen bloeme, door Jacob van Merland, is een vertaling, met uitweidingen ... en inkortingen, van een uitgebreide versie van het Liber de natura rerum, geschreven in het midden van de 13de eeuw door Thomas van Cantimpre."

941 pages, index.

Language: Dutch
OCLC: 21716642


Datering en localisering van Reinaert I (in Aspects of the Medieval Animal Epic, Louvain: Leuven University Press, 1975, page 165-186) [Book article]

"Van Reinaert I zijn tot op heden vijf handschriften bekend: twee fragmentarische uit de 13de eeuw (G en E), twee volledige uit de 14de eeuw (F en A) en een fragmentarisch uit de 15de eeuw. Het oudst, maar ook het meest verminkt en het geringst in omvang, zijn de fragmenten G, die bewaard worden op de Gemeentebibliotheek te Rotterdam: het schrift is van zowat 1270-80. De taal vertoont Noordnederrijnse insluipsels. Het bijwoord 2190 wo "hoe" is Noordnederrijns (Kleef-Geldern) en Nederduits (westwaarts tot de IJselstreek). Niet vocaliseren van l (2189 solde voor soude) wijst in de ontstaanstijd van Reinaert G in hoofdzaak naar Utrecht, Gelderland, de Nederrijn en het Neder- en Hoogduitse taalgebied. De vormen 2212 deir voor der, neiman voor nieman en 2217 heit voor hiet horen thuis in Utrecht, Gelderland, Limburg, de Nederrijn en het Nederduitse taalgebied. Van het in hoofdzaak Nederduitse bet (2214) duikt een westelijk voorbeeld op te Utrecht in 1295. De vorm 3246 scirpe met bewaarde ir (cf. Mhd. schirpe) is evenwel niet Nederduits, maar Limburgs-Nederrijns. Het afschrift G mag bijgevolg gelocaliseerd worden in de streek van Geldern-Kleef." - Gysseling

Language: Dutch


Berechiah ha-Nakdan, Moses Hadas, trans. & ed.

Fables of a Jewish Aesop: Translated from the Fox Fables of Berechiah ha-Nakdan (Jaffrey, NH: David R Godine, 2001) [Book]

"... a translation of the justly famous Hebrew Fox Tales of Berechiah ben Natronai ha-Nakdan, a Jewish philosopher, Biblical commentator and Hebrew grammarian who lived in France during the late twelfth or early thirteenth century. Berechiah added his own narrative details to the traditional stories, using every opportunity to introduce Biblical quotaions and allusions and use the language and lessons of the Old Testament. By using the language of the King James version Moses Hadas' translation beautifully preserves the Biblical character of the original, allowing the reader to appreciate the most interesting aspect of Berechiah's work - the change which Aesop's fables underwent when viewed in the mirror of Hebrew culture." - publisher

233 pp., woodcut illustrations by Fritz Kredel, introduction by W.T.H. Jackson.

Language: English
ISBN: 1-56792-131-0


A.F. Haalboom

het serpent scalker dan eenich dier op aertrijck - De behandelwijze van slangen en serpenten in de Middelnederlandse encyclopedieën "Van den proprieteyten der dinghen" en "Der naturen bloeme" (Utrecht University, 2011)

Snakes were terrifying and symbolically very loaded animals in the Middle Ages. This thesis compares the treatment of snakes in Van den proprieteyten der dinghen [De proprietatibus rerum] (1485) and Der naturenbloeme [Der Naturen Bloeme] (ca. 1270) by Jacob van Maerlant. Both works are Middle Dutch translations of thirteenth-century scholarly encyclopaedias written in Latin by monks. Van den proprieteyten der dinghen closely follows his Latin source of Bartholomeus Anglicus. Maerlant, on the other hand, has simplified his source into a book that can be called popular science. The treatment of snakes in both works illustrates this difference. Maerlant discusses the animals in separate books and thus divides the animal kingdom into large groups. Snakes also get their own book. However, Maerlant pays little attention to the characteristics on which this classification of the animal kingdom is based. Nor does he divide the snakes into further subgroups. Bartholomew treats all land animals in one book. This means that snakes are scattered among the other animals. Bartholomew divides the serpent kingdom into many more groups and subgroups than Maerlant and explains in detail why these divisions are valid according to him. Bartholomew strongly thematizes a number of loaded traits of snakes, such as belly-crawling, venom, dwelling in dark burrows, and crooked paths. Such properties are often used as classification criteria. Because of this, Bartholomew constantly emphasizes the interrelationships between snakes and the relationship between snakes and the rest of nature. Bartholomeus usually does not make symbolic interpretations and moral lessons explicit, although his information about snakes does evoke connotations with the devil. Maerlant emphasizes the thematic similarities between snakes much less, but focuses on providing practical information and telling tall stories about the different snake species. The relationship between snakes and other animals receives less attention from him than from Bartholomew. Maerlant gives explicit moral lessons. All in all, Der naturenbloeme offers more practical and simpler information about snakes than Van den proprieteyten der dinghen. This may have to do with differences in the level of development of the (intended) audience of the two works. - Abstract

Language: Dutch


Alisa van de Haar, ed., Annelies Schulte Nordholt, ed.

Figurations animalières à travers les textes et l’image en Europ (Brill, 2021)

Fish climbing trees, storks taking care of their parents… Premodern textual and visual culture presents us with a fabulous bestiary that reveals ingenious and rich reflections on the animal kingdom. The studies united in this volume will allow you to discover animals in all their possible states: are they simple anthropomorphic images of man? Models to follow? Or autonomous beings, equal or even superior to man? By exploring a large diversity of texts – fables, poetry, novels, travel narratives, emblematic works – and visual media – paintings, tapestries, jewellery, this richly illustrated volume displays the fruitful premodern exchanges between natural history and culture. It follows new trends in cultural criticism by implicitly interrogating the need to move beyond the reigning paradigms of anthropocentrism and anthropomorphism. - [Publisher]

Language: French
978-90-04-47201-3; DOI: 10.1163/9789004472013


Laurent Hablot

Emblématique et mythologie médiévale : le cygne, une devise princière (Animalia (Histoire de l'art), 49, 2001, page 51-64) [Journal article]

"A partir du 14e s., l'image du cygne apparait sur les insignes (vatement, bijou, sceau, decor mural et carrelage) dans l'ensemble du monde occidental, en particulier chez les Lancaster. Cette revalorisation du cygne, longtemps boude par le bestiaire et l'heraldique medievaux, a plusieurs origines. L'une d'entre elles est la legende du Chevalier au Cygne qui puise a la fois dans le fonds culturel antique, qui vehicule une image positive du cygne, et dans les mythes fondateurs des grandes familles feodales notamment ceux de la maison de Boulogne. Progressivement, le cygne comme embleme ou devise, devient une reference et un patrimoine commun de la societe medievale pour laquelle il evoque le monde chevaleresque, courtois et nobiliaire." - abstract

Language: French
ISSN: 0992-2059


Tobias Hagtingius

A Pornographic Fox (in Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed., Épopée Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Société Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 235-248) [Book article]

A discussion of the common image of the friar-fox preaching to an audience of geese or other birds, with particular attention to the possible sexual overtones of the fox/friar as seducer of his flock. Six illustrations.

Language: English


C. Hahn

The creation of the cosmos: Genesis illustration in the Octateuchs. (Cahiers Archéologiques Paris, 28, 1979, page 29-40) [Journal article]

A discussion of the map of the world illustrating the Christian Topography of the Cosmos (Laurenziana Plut. IX, 28, fol. 92v), and of animals of the Physiologus as sources of the illustration of the Seraglio Octateuch (Istanbul), like those of other examples, such that of Smyrna.

Language: English


Margaret Haist

The lion, bloodline, and kingship (in Debra Hassig, ed., The Mark of the Beast: The Medieval Bestiary in Art, Life, and Literature, New York: Garland, 1999, page 3-21) [Book article]

Discusses the image of the powerful lion as used in biblical texts and by medieval kings.

Language: English
ISBN: 0-8153-2952-0


Daniel Hall, Farson Angus

Mysterious Monsters (New York: Mayflower Books, Inc, 1975) [Book]

Language: English


J. Hall

Selections from Early Middle English (Oxford: 1920) [Book]

Includes a transcription of the Middle English Bestiary (British Library Arundel MS 292). See also Emory, 1957 for corrections to the transcription.

Language: English


Einar S. Hallbeck

The language of the Middle English bestiary (Cristianstad: Länstidning Press, 1905) [Book]

Middle English phonology and inflection.

66 pp., bibliography.

Language: English
LC: PE540; OCLC: 14951301


Robert Halleux

Damigéron, Evax et Marbode: l'héritage alexandrin dans les lapidaires médiévaux (Studi medievali, 3rd series 15/1, 1974, page 327-347) [Journal article]

Language: French


W. R. Halliday

Picus-who-is-also-Zeus (Classical Review, XXXVI, 1922, page 110-112) [Journal article]

Language: English


Elisabeth Halna-Klein

Sur les traces du lynx (Médiévales: langue, textes, histoire, 141, 1995, page 119-128) [Journal article]

Discusses how in the early Middle Ages, the classical view persisted of the lynx as an evil, harmful animal, while later writers describe it as positive, independent and useful. Summaries in English.

Language: French


Edward B. Ham

The Cambrai Bestiary (Modern Philology, 36:3 (February), 1939, page 225-237) [Journal article]

An oversight in A. Molinier's catalogue of the Bibliotheque municipale at Cambrai has caused the thirteenth-century prose bestiary [Bibliothèque Municipale de Cambrai, MS 370] published here to remain unknown until now. While it is always desirable to bring to light any medieval French text of literary intent, this particular bestiary merits attention for additional reasons. It is an early sample of the suppression of didactic elements in such treatises... Derived from the Bestiaire d'amour of Richard de Fournival, it also accounts very largely for the origin and form of the late thirteenth-century Provencal adaptation in the famous La Valliere chansonnier (Bib. Nat. fr. 22543). Discovery of the Cambrai bestiary increases the evidence for the rather considerable contemporary popularity of Richard de Fournival... - [Author]

Language: English


Hampshire Record Office

Dragons and Beasts at the Hampshire Record Office (Hampshire Record Office, 2002) [Web page]

At Hampshire Record Office dragons and beasts appear almost exclusively in written records connected to the Church and its estates, or those belonging to monastic houses such as abbeys. ... There are illustrations of dragons to be found amongst some of the parchment pages of the estate records of the bishops of Winchester known as pipe rolls, dating from medieval and Tudor times, and within the Mottisfont Rental, from the medieval abbey at Mottisfont. ... It seems likely that scribes were familiar with drawings of real and mythical beasts which they had seen in bestiaries elsewhere. ... Almost all of the medieval books containing dragons and beasts at Hampshire Record Office would have been written by local scribes from monastic houses. - [Hampshire Record Office]

Language: English


Ralph Hanna

A Descriptive Catalog of the Western Medieval Manuscripts of St John's College Oxford (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002) [Book]

Includes extensive descriptions of St John's College manuscripts MS. 61 (bestiary), MS. 136 (Physiologus), and MS. 178 (bestiary).

Language: English
ISBN: 0-19-920239-7; LCCN: 2001059321; LC: Z6621.S75H362002; DDC: 011'.31'0942574-dc21


Noboru Harano

Caracteres des manuscrits du groupe G du Roman de Renart (in Gabriel Bianciotto & Michel Salvat, ed., Épopée Animale, Fable, Fabliau: Actes du IVe Colloque de la Société Internationale Renardienne, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1984, page 249-254) [Book article]

A study of the Roman de Renart manuscripts in group A, with a table of the rubrics and incipits of each tale in the manuscripts.

Language: French


Paul Hardwick

Foxing Daun Russell: Moral Lessons of Poultry on Misericords and in Literature (Reinardus. Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, 2004; Series: Volume 17, Issue 1)

This paper discusses representations of the pursuit of the fox in misericord carvings in England, taking up Elaine Block and Kenneth Varty’s point that ‘the isolation of {the} dramatic chasing of the fox within churches almost certainly means that it could be given a moral point’. The carvings are considered in the light of English written sources of the period, including Chaucer’s Nun’s Priest’s Tale, preaching materials and beast allegory. Interpreting them in this context, it is suggested that their ‘moral point’ concerns the need for rigorous adherence to clerical discipline and a warning of the consequences of failure. - [Abstract]

Language: English
DOI: 10.1075/rein.17.07har


Through a Glass, Darkly: Interpreting Animal Physicians (Reinardus, 15:1, 2002, page 63-70) [Journal article]

The present