Unicorns! No, not corns with horns, an utterly adorable image, if I may be so bold. No, unicorns are mythical creatures like horses but with a huge swirly horn in the middle of the forehead. I thought it best to open this post with some unicorn facts. Sadly, that’s much harder do that you may realise. For you see, unicorns aren’t real. Like leprechauns and the notion that men find thongs sexy. We really don’t. There’s nothing sexy about a girl with a wedgie. It’s said, for example, that a unicorn without any testicles is named a ‘eunuchorn’. Ha, don’t you just adore testicular wordplay…
It’s also said that unicorns bite hard, and that they are very rare when cooked. This batch of facts I found also claims that the blood of a unicorn is enough to make your nipples fall off. I mean, I’m not sure how, but colour me concerned. It’s also claimed, much like with horses, which are used to make glue, that unicorns are used to make super glue. Well, they are, basically, magical horses, so, you know…
A fanatic of the unicorn created a website dedicated to a mythology she built around the animal, although I’m not sure what kind of mythology she was aiming for. It’s certainly interesting. No, wait… alarming. That’s what I meant to say. I’m always getting those two words mixed up. Silly me. She claims that a unicorn ‘holds the power of divine truth’ and will ‘pierce the heart of a liar with its horn.’ Ah, so that’s what the horn is for. She also says that a unicorn is attracted to purity and innocence, ‘giving rise to the legend of the virgin and the unicorn.’ This story, readers, does not end how you’re probably imagining it will.
According to said legend, only a virgin sitting naked under a tree holds the power to capture a unicorn. Seeing her beauty and pureness, the unicorn will venture close and lay down beside the virgin, placing its head in her lap. She then, apparently, kills it. Don’t know why. Maybe it looked at her funny. Of course, it’s a useless power for virgins to have unless they’re sitting under a tree. Plus, if a unicorn lays its head on the lap of a virgin, it will, most probably, crush her legs horribly under the weight. That said, if the unicorn laid its one-horned head on her lap in a particular way, at least it would be an enjoyable crushing…
But let’s move on to some real unicorn facts. Did you know that there are six references to unicorns in the King James Bible? Sadly, it’s a mistranslation and not evidence that they once existed but were hunted to extinction by an army of unicorn hating virgins. But the Ancient Greeks also wrote about unicorns, not as part of their mythology, but as part of their natural history. Greek historian Ctesias wrote that the beast had a white body, blue eyes and a multicoloured horn, red at the tip, black in the middle and white at the bottom. He also said they had a purple head. Probably turned that colour whilst choking on a virgin exacting revenge after said unicorn ate said virgin…
It was because of unicorns that Genghis Kahn decided not to conquer India. It’s said that he met one that bowed down to him. Mr. Genghis took this as a message from his dead father and so turned his army back. Marco Polo also had an encounter with a unicorn. “They are a very ugly brute to look at. They are not at all such as we describe unicorns,” he said. He was actually looking at a rhino. Ah, well.
Unicorn horns have been sold throughout history, although, obviously, they didn’t belong to the mythical unicorn. Most likely, they belonged to the utterly adorable narwhals. And they were worth quite a bit. At its height, unicorn horn was worth around 10 times its weight in gold. In 1560, merchants in Germany sold one for an incredible 90,000 scudi, around – brace yourselves – three million pounds in today’s money, around four million US dollars. More incredible yet was that it was sold to Pope Pius IV. A fan of unicorns, as it turns out. Who knew?
As late as 1741, powdered unicorn horn was being sold in London. By 1971, Lake Superior University in Michigan was issuing permits to ‘unicorn questers’, showing that, in those 230 years, the human race hadn’t gotten any smarter. Although, to be fair to the ‘Unicorn Questers Society’, they don’t just hunt for unicorns. No, they also established the banned words list, snowman burning and stone skipping tournaments. Oh, and their ‘unicorn’ is ‘one’s personal vision of perfection and happiness’. Bloody hippies.
Craziness and America went hand in hand again in 1980 when patent number US 4429685 A was filed. ‘This invention relates to a method of growing unicorns in a manner that enhances the overall development of the animal.’ Yes, a surgical procedure to create a unicorn. It involved transplanting the horn buds of a goat to create one horn in the middle of the goat’s head. A unigoat, if you will. A goaticorn. I don’t know, it’s crazy in any case…
So, what are my thoughts on unicorns?
Oh gee, do you really need to ask that?
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