Tuesday, October 18, 2016

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The Peryton is a legendary creature but he is not evil. Often depicted as a winged deer, the Peryton was said to have the head, neck, forelegs and antlers of a deer and the plumage, wings and hindquarters of a large bird. Though these physical characteristics may seem strange legend has it that the Peryton's shadow was even stranger. The shadow was that of a winged deer as the physical characteristics would suggest but instead appeared in the form of a man. This strange shadow led many scholars of the time to speculate at the Peryton were the spiritual manifestations of travels that perished far from the shores of home, the souls of murders trapped in bestial bodies or the ghosts of long dead sailors.


The Peryton is a mythological hybrid animal combining the physical features of a stag and a bird. The Peryton was created and described by Jorge Luis Borges in his Book of Imaginary Beings, using a supposedly long-lost medieval manuscript as a source.
The Peryton is said to have the head, neck, forelegs and antlers of a stag, combined with the plumage, wings and hindquarters of a large bird, although some interpretations portray the Peryton as a deer in all but coloration and bird's wings.


According to Borges, Perytons lived in Atlantis until an earthquake destroyed the civilization and the creatures escaped by flight. A Peryton casts the shadow of a man until it kills one during its lifetime, at which time it starts to cast its own shadow. A Sibyl once prophesied that the Perytons would lead to the downfall of Rome.

The earliest verifiable account of the Peryton occurs in Jorge Luis Borges Book of Imaginary Beings, in which he refers a manuscript, now lost in the sands of time, as his source. In more recent years the Peryton became more widely known because of its inclusion in the first edition Monster Manual from the popular role playing game Dungeons and Dragons.

Outside of the encounter by Roman statesmen and General Publius Cornelius Scipio and his sailors sometime between 237 and 183 BC no documented sightings of the Peryton could be found at this time.


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