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Advent Calendar 2020: Winter Wonderland

For our 2020 Advent Calendar, we will be sharing snowy and wintery scenes from our Photographic Collections each day leading up to Christmas. Snow covered North Street, St Andrews, 1891 (ID: JV-14203-B). A coloured…

December 25 – Fairies

The myth of fairies has no single origin, but stories of fairy-like creatures are common throughout folklore. These magical creatures usually have a human appearance plus their most distinctive feature – wings. Andrew…

December 24 – Chimera

The composite Persian volume known as the Book of Wonders, deals with natural history and geography. It is made up of the ‘Seven Seas’ section of ‘Aja’ib al-makhluqat wa-ghara’ib al-mawjudat (Marvels of Things Created…

December 21 – Werewolf

Werewolves are humans with the ability to change into wolves, voluntarily or not, most often on the night of a full moon. This illustration, by Henry J Ford, is from the The Red Romance Book (1905) edited by Andrew…

December 19 – Salamander

While salamanders are real creatures (lizards), within folklore they have been endowed with remarkable attributes, mainly their ability to withstand fire. The image of a salamander was often used within alchemy as a…