Page 114




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of a man. Another, very proud, beast is found there,
which has a horse's body, a boar's head,
and an elephant's tail. It has two horns, each
of which is about one and a half feet long, and it keeps one
of the horns on its back [by turning sideways] while it fights with the other one.
It is black, and is a most terrible beast, nimble and marvelous
in water and on land. And again there are to be seen
bulls that are completely white, each with a large head and
a mouth so big that the gap extends from one ear to
the other, and horns that it moves around
so that no one can master it. Another
kind of beast in India is called
the manthirora [manticore], which has the face of
a man, three large teeth in an enormous mouth,
the eyes of a goat, the body of a lion, and the tail of a
scorpion. It has a serpent's voice, so that with
its sweet song it attracts people and then devours them.
It moves with more ease than a bird can fly. There is also
a type of ox with completely round feet and three
horns in the middle of its forehead. And there is
another beast with very beautiful

Notes and Questions

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Marie Richards

original ms. Folio 48r
Walters ms. Folio 53r
BL Royal MS 19 A IX fol 54v
Caxton, ed. Prior, pp. 73-74
Gossuin, ed. Prior, 113-114

Marie Richards

Line 3: coute = cubit. Translated here as 1 1/2 feet, for the modern reader.

Marie Richards

Line 6: BL has "penible a merveillez et est en eaue..." which is a slightly different meaning ("marvelously nimble, and is on..." vs. "nimble and marvelous on...") BL ms. is probably correct.