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The manuscripts known as bestiaries are among the most attractive medieval books, containing depictions and descriptions of all manner of beasts-some quite real, some imagined. Alongside the familiar beasts-lion, tiger, leopard, antelope, goat-are to be found the exotic and mythical-unicorn, griffin, monoceros, yale, dragon, phoenix. In the bestiaries there is a story attached to each of them, and very often a moral to point as well; the compilers, in describing the animal kingdom, sought to draw a lesson from the good and ...

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