BIBLICAL ANIMALS IN THE 16TH-CENTURY POLISH CHIVALRY ROMANCES (O zwierzetach rodem z Biblii w polskich XVI-wiecznych romansach rycerskich)
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The author focuses on biblical animals as heroes of the Polish chivalry romances of the 16th century. They play an important role in the lives of the protagonists and symbolize the main qualities of an ideal knight: courage, bravery and piety. The 16th-century Polish writers paid attention not only to the animals' appearance, but especially to their attitudes towards humans. Hence they can fall into two categories: the creatures associated with God and those representing evil. Such differentiation has its origins in the Bible. The animal heroes appearing in the texts under discussion include brave horses, terrifying dragons, a lion and hind who look after people, a boar that drags heroes into the gutter, a self-centred monkey, dogs saving human life or the so-called monstra biformia consisting of different members of other creatures' bodies.
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