December 7 – Satyr

speccoll
Saturday 7 December 2019
Illustration of a satyr from Gesner’s Historiae animalium (1551-1558).

In Greek mythology, Satyrs are attendants to the god Bacchus, residing in woods and mountains. In the middle ages they are often illustrated as possessing a mixture of human and goat-like features. Satyrs were often conflated with fauns and medieval wild men or mythical wodehouses – semi-human forest creatures.

This illustration is taken from Swiss physician and naturalist Conrad Gesner’s zoological work Historiae animalium (1551-1558). His work attempted to describe the animal kingdom and was illustrated with beautiful woodcuts, which in many copies, like ours, are hand-coloured. Notably, the work also includes many animals we consider fictional, such as this satyr.

Share this story


Leave a reply

By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website.

Subscribe

Enter your email address here to receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 3 other subscribers.