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Virgin and Unicorn by Domenichino (1581 – 1641)

Virgin and Unicorn by Domenichino (1581 – 1641). Painted circa 1602.

A picture I found in doing my research for my short story ‘The Unicorn Hunters’. My unicorns in the tale aren’t like white horses with a horn as they are most commonly depicted nowadays. Instead, I’ve gone for a look that’s a little closer to some medieval stylings of them. They are deer-sized, with hairy tufts above cloven-hoofs. Both sexes have a singular horn along with manes and tails not dissimilar to horses, but bucks (males) can grow ‘billy goat’ beards.

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