‘Fabulous monsters’: celebrating National Unicorn Day

National

Corey Jurgensen runs along East Henry Avenue wearing an inflatable unicorn costume. Jurgensen has been wearing the costume during runs several times a week to cheer up others during this time of isolation but finds it therapeutic for herself as well to run through her Seminole Heights neighborhood wearing a silly costume, Thursday, April 16, 2020 in Tampa, Fla.
(Martha Asencio Rhine/Tampa Bay Times via AP)

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — What do you call a group of unicorns? A blessing.

Today, most popular mythical creature is being honored around the country.

April 9 is National Unicorn Day in celebration of the often candy-colored magical horned horse.

Culturally, the unicorn is emblematic of fantasy, wonder, and splendor that’s become a popular theme for parties and empowerment. 

Historically, unicorns are magical horse-type creatures with a spiraled horn that projects from the forehead. Some of the earliest representations of unicorns can be found in Mesopotamian art, and myths from China, India, and Greece that depict the unicorn at faraway locales. 

According to Ctesias, a Greek and Indian physician who wrote On the Nature of Animals, the one-horned horse originated in India, although many argue the creature was an Indian Rhinoceros. 

Unicorns often represent grace and immaculacy.

The Hebrew Bible depicts a creature called the “re’em” that some believe is a unicorn.

Perceived powers of the unicorn were so strong during the middle ages that an entire industry operated on hunting and selling Narwhal whale tusks marketed as unicorn horns with healing properties. 

Unicorns represent strength and independence in Celtic, Roman and Persian lore that is also a symbol of freedom and has been on the Scottish coat of arms since the 12th century.

In 1707, the unicorn joined a lion on the British coat of arms that represented unity between Scotland and England.

Lewis Carroll described an exchange between Alice and “fabulous monster” in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland / Through the Looking-Glass:

“I always thought they were fabulous monsters!” said the Unicorn. “Is it alive?”

“It can talk,” said Haigha, solemnly.

The Unicorn looked dreamily at Alice, and said, “Talk, child.”

Alice could not help her lips curling up into a smile as she began: “Do you know, I always thought Unicorns were fabulous monsters, too! I never saw one alive before!”

“Well, now that we have seen each other,” said the Unicorn, “if you’ll believe in me, I’ll believe in you. Is that a bargain?”

More than anything, unicorns give us all something to believe in — even if it’s ourselves.
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