Mythological Creatures: Unicorn & Pegasus

Every woman in fantasy wants a unicorn. It’s like girls and horses…just add a horn and a fantasy world.

Guys usually want a dragon.

But, to remain well-rounded and up to speed on fantasy creatures, today we’ll take a deeper look at the difference between a unicorn and a pegasus.

 

Unicorn

Unicorns were once considered real. They have their own versions in different cultures — the Greek unicorn, the Chinese unicorn (called Ch’i lin), the Japanese unicorn (Kirin or Sin-you), and Vietnamese unicorn lore.

unicorn-pegasus-enclaveDespite the many times we see a white stallion with a horn in a movie or book, the original depiction of the unicorn (in Greek mythology) was a white, red, and black horse with a goat beard and a boar’s tail. Sometimes it even had the head of a stag. Chinese and Japanese folklore bring even more versatile descriptions to the creature — the body of an antelope or having a lion’s mane. One thing is consistent, though — the unicorns were known for being a great display of color. Whether it came from reflections, their horn, or their hair/fur….stunning colors are a trait.

The symbolism for unicorns rose up later. Here are some interesting characteristics:

  • Unicorns can be captured only by a maiden
  • It walks so softly, its hooves make no sound (Chinese unicorn lore)
  • Their horns have magical healing qualities
  • The Sin-you unicorn can distinguish right from wrong, helping judge offenses. (Japanese unicorn lore)
  • Unicorns symbolize prosperity and peace

Books with unicorns in them:

  • Of the Persecuted, by Angie Brashear (Callie is a war unicorn. She’s so cool!)
  • The Chronicles of Narnia, by C. S. Lewis (Jewel was also a warrior unicorn, King Peter’s steed)
  • The Harry Potter Series, by J. K. Rowling

 

Pegasus

Pegasus isn’t a type of creature, it’s actually the name of the winged white stallion from Greek mythology. Pegasus was born from Poseidon (horse lord) and Medusa (freaky lady with snake hair.) While Pegasus is one specific creature, his name has often been used as a defining term for winged horses in general.

Personally, I’m not bothered by changed uses of mythological creatures. They’ve sprung from myth in the first place so why can’t we add to or change the lore up a bit in modern day. 😉

Defining characteristics of the pegasus:

  • It’s a horse that can fly (duh), so it has massive wings
  • Pure white in color
  • A symbol of wisdom and fame
  • In Greek mythology, his role was to bring thunderbolts to Zeus.

Books with pegasi in them:

  • Percy Jackson Series, by Rick Riordan

 

 

Okay, time to take a vote: unicorn or pegasus?

What are some books that you’ve liked that present the unicorn or pegasus well?

 

28 Responses to Mythological Creatures: Unicorn & Pegasus

  1. Rebekah Gyger April 22, 2015 at 9:58 am #

    I like that you remembered that the Pegasus is pure white. It drives me nuts hows many people depict him as black. He is also only ride-able by a courageous hero and is the father of all winged horses (of which there are few).

  2. Clare February 2, 2016 at 5:16 pm #

    UNICORN every time, because I love them and my Epic fantasy I am writing is about them.

  3. Sarah February 2, 2016 at 6:36 pm #

    Uh, sorry to knock you off your unicorn, but Jewel was King Tirian’s friend in the last days of Narnia, thousands of years after the Golden Age when King Peter reigned.

    • srfchaplin@outlook.com May 27, 2019 at 11:50 pm #

      Also there was the entire Adept series by Piers Anthony that involved Unicorns as a major character.

  4. Michele Fritchie February 3, 2016 at 11:14 am #

    Though not a Christian work, the book–and later movie–“The Last Unicorn” was amazing. I’ve read the book–may or may not still have it–and have seen the movie. Both are well done.

  5. Ava P. March 8, 2016 at 8:51 pm #

    Okay, this is really good, and UNICORNS RULE, but, Poseidon is the Greek god of the seas and earthquakes, not just the “horse lord”. And Medusa is not just a “freaky lady with snake hair”. She was cursed by Athena, because she kissed Poseidon in Athena’s temple, and she was VERY mad about this, so she turned Medusa’s hair to snakes. But other than that, This is SOO good! I really like to. Sorry if I seemed rude, I am a Greek mythology freak.

    • OlympusDaughter March 19, 2018 at 11:25 am #

      Medusa and Poseidon were doing much worse in the temple

  6. Michelllllleeeee May 8, 2017 at 8:20 am #

    Pegasus! I choose pegasus for my vote and Percy Jackson is a book with the Pegasus in it.

  7. Lauren May 10, 2017 at 1:50 pm #

    I think that Pegasus is the most important because they take a good place in history!! But I love both unicorn and Pegasus !!

    • Laurennnn May 10, 2017 at 1:53 pm #

      Plus unicorns don’t have wings only a horn that is it’s only cool feature but the Pegasus has wings and collects lighting bolts for the great lord Zues !!!

  8. Sabatoge October 3, 2017 at 10:16 am #

    Guys love unicorns

  9. anonymous October 3, 2017 at 10:20 am #

    (“)> i love unicorns

    • derp October 3, 2017 at 10:28 am #

      troll i love unicorns trolololololololololololololo

  10. derp October 3, 2017 at 10:24 am #

    troll i love unicorns

  11. bot1 October 3, 2017 at 10:30 am #

    herp a derp i love unicorns

  12. bot2 October 3, 2017 at 10:34 am #

    dragons suck unicorns are awsome

  13. bot3 October 3, 2017 at 10:36 am #

    unicorns are cool

  14. bot4 October 3, 2017 at 10:52 am #

    guys like unicorns not dragons

  15. Someone in the world. November 1, 2017 at 2:28 pm #

    This was a SUPER helpful website. I vote Pegasus! But don’t get me wrong…Unicorns are pretty lit.

  16. K. M. Flynn November 16, 2017 at 1:30 pm #

    Another book that has a “Pegasus” is The Magician’s Nephew by C. S. Lewis. Remember Fledge? I always loved that book.

  17. Jane February 25, 2018 at 9:12 am #

    Unicorns all the way for me and I’ve loved them all my life so really happy that they are currently the ‘in’ thing so there’s lots of unicorn stuff available.
    However, when did Pegasus mate with a Unicorn?
    The reason I’m asking is there are too many Unicorns depicted with wings
    Unicorns do not have wings!!

  18. J. Max Powers April 15, 2018 at 10:42 pm #

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=iXZzCLinWu4

    Debate settled. You’re welcome.

  19. Micheal July 30, 2018 at 5:13 am #

    Hi!

    I really like the unicorn facts thanks for sharing..

    unicorn facts

  20. Micheal Ridgeley October 15, 2018 at 1:25 pm #

    I am more interested in information about unicorns. They sound for real and beautiful.

  21. Unicorn Lover July 11, 2019 at 6:49 pm #

    Unicorns rule! I only wish I could have one in my garden 🙂

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Distinguish a unicorn and a Pegasus – Unicorn - April 1, 2017

    […] – See more at: https://www.enclavepublishing.com/mythological-creatures-unicorn-pegasus/#sthash.fMqQ6nsO.dpuf […]

  2. Mythological Creatures: Unicorns – araalfaro415 - August 30, 2017

    […] Source/Citation: * “Mythological Creatures: Unicorn & Pegasus” by Nadine Brandes; Retrieved August 31, 2017; https://www.enclavepublishing.com/mythological-creatures-unicorn-pegasus/ […]

  3. difference between UnicornGO and Design Pickle – Graphics By Zak – Graphic Design Blog - July 29, 2018

    […] Mythological Creatures: Unicorn & Pegasus – Enclave Publishing […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *