Unicorns have held a place in human imagination and myth for millennia and most societies on Earth have stories that contain unicorns as main characters. Most common is a description of a white horse-like creature with either gold or silver spiral horn and cloven hooves, a flowing mane and tail (though sometimes the tail is lion-like) and a beard and feathering on the legs. However, there are other descriptions such as Ctesia’s Indian unicorn that was white of body, had a red (or purple in some descriptions) head, blue eyes and a horn that was white at the base, black in the middle and blood red at the tip. In the Orient, the unicorn was very colorful, covered in scales and fur in some telling or just fur in others, and either had a single horn that curved back over the head or had a branched horn like a deer; they looked very much like a mix between a horse and a dragon. Other unicorns have been described similar to rhinos and may very well be those, but the telling got garbled as travelers went from place to place and the descriptions were altered by word of mouth by people that had never seen a real rhino; having one horn automatically makes one a unicorn historically.
The horn of the unicorn is a source of contention and greed in many of the myths; they were hunted for the supposed powers they contained, the unicorn being killed for it. Myths tell that the horn could detect poison, would not allow silk to burn if placed on a burning coal, could kill a spider if a circle was drawn with it and the spider placed within and myriad other uses. They were so sought after that eventually Narwhal tusk was substituted and to find the genuine article those powers were put to the test; it the horn failed, it was a fake. Fortuneatly for the unicorn, as time went by the practice of medicine became the norm and the use of superstition was pushed to the wayside and the unicorn was largely forgotten as anything but a pretty mythical creature. What a mythological unicorn ate is a topic that has stymied researchers for years. No one has recorded what a unicorn ate, and theories abound. Some say that they ate as a horse would, others say they only ate the old plant growth to save the young and there’s even one that says that they needed no food, only sun or moon light to survive.
Today, many people collect things with unicorns on them; shirts, statues, art, pretty much anything that can have one on it does and are in collections in homes around the world. This is proof that the unicorn still holds a place in peoples hearts.
For some reason Unicorn Kin are few and far between. There are two theories on this, one is that those that identify with unicorns have not come to terms with it yet and the other reason is that they simply don’t exist in this life yet for one reason or another. Whatever the reason, they are a minority in the Otherkin community and tend to gather together when they can find one another; there are concerns and a commonality that only other Unicorns can address.
One theory as to why we come in so many different color combinations, from white to blue to black to any color in between is that they are our natural colors that we can see and remember. Humans, at least most of them, cannot see the wavelength that is required to see our colors, hence the legends that unicorns are white; those that saw color may have been rare humans that are sensitive to different wavelengths, but that is conjecture.
Unicorn Otherkin, like other Otherkin, come in many shapes, sizes, creeds and colors. And as with many others it is hard to pin down any one trait besides the fact that we all have one horn and are vaguely equine in form. Some have smooth horns while others have spiral. Some have cloven hooves and beards while others have solid hooves and no beards. Some are horse-like, others are more like goats or gazelles. And the colors are too many to mention, the combinations too numerous. Again, there are theories that there are subspecies of unicorn depending on area, as well as a theory that some are not even from this planet originally; coming from a different realm or planet is a common theme in many Otherkin communities, but is by far not the majority rule.
The horn myths cause a lot of discussion in Unicorn Otherkin; were they magic, could they do what the myths said? Unfortunately not much can be concluded from discussion since each Unicorn has their own ideas on how their own horn was used and their own powers; some of the myths may be true for some while untrue for others. It is a purely personal thing with Unicorn Otherkin. Food is another thing that is fodder for talk. Being human this time around, many eat an omnivorous diet but there are a few that are vegetarian or vegan; it all depends on the person.
Unicorn Otherkin are a unique subculture of the Otherkin community to be sure.
Needless to say, since no one can prove that Otherkin are right or wrong, all this is conjecture gathered from a myriad of sources spanning from close Otherkin friends to the myths of mankind and must be taken with a grain of salt as most things in this world must be.
- The Lore of the Unicorn by Odell Shepard
- A Wizards Bestiary by Oberon Zell-Ravenheart
- And my own personal experience and those I know from the Unicorn Grove, http://unicorngrove.subject-expert.com/forum.htm
May your claws and horns stay sharp and your minds free!