The dog is man’s best friend. The fact that there are 43.3 million American households that own a dog would testify to the accuracy of that statement. In fact, the relationship between dogs and humans is as old as human civilization itself. And keeping dogs as pets goes back to the late Middle Ages.
Whenever we here at Quirk Books think we have found everything there is to discover about the weird and wonderful world of medieval manuscripts, something new always pops up and takes us by surprise. This time, what came at us out of left field was the incredible art form of micrography.
We love hedgehogs! Hedgehogs are a commonly occurring animal in manuscripts and bestiaries throughout the Middle Ages (and who can blame the artists for including them?). If you’ve read our other posts about medieval manuscripts, be warned: this might be the cutest one yet.
Of all the tens of thousands of manuscripts that were produced and copied during the Middle Ages, only a fraction have survived to our day. Some of these manuscripts are plain, written in black ink, and have no more than a few illustrations. Others are magnificent with colorful writings and illuminations plated in real gold. And then there are the manuscripts that are outright weird.
We would like to introduce you to four of the weirdest medieval manuscripts still in existence.
Cat pics and the Internet go together like peanut butter and jelly. You can’t imagine one without the other. But did you know that LOL cats, cat memes, and cats being jerks go as far back as the Middle Ages?
The fictional universe of J.K. Rowling is filled with fantastical creatures, and no other movie takes better advantage of this than Fantastical Beasts and Where to Find Them, which opens in theaters today.
When creating her magical world, Rowling is tapping into a literary tradition that goes all the way back to the Middle Ages and the literary genre of the bestiary.
Bestiaries are books of animals, both real and fantastical, accompanied by a description and a Christian parable. Even though bestiaries peaked in popularity in the 13th century, they continue to influence us today. Especially when it comes to fantasy fiction.
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