Symbolism of the Unicorn
Question Everything

I love to look at things in an open way, especially leaning towards thoughts of a world beyond known boundaries. For this is what inspires me to write and drives my passion to tell an unusual story. The basic elements of a 'normal' theme are still there within the pages, but elaborated with subtly blending touches of underlying ethereal delights. I try to keep the tale I'm writing realistic, believable, and so bend the rules to 'fit in' to my own way of thinking, using visuals, and, of course, feeling. When elements from different sources 'marry' in my mind it gets the creative juices buzzing and the story flows. This page mentally explores those 'deeper' ideas/processes of thinking prior to weaving into a story, which are themselves usually derived from folklore. I couldn't write without an element of spiritual growth portrayed in some way, though not in any true religious sense. This questioning muse has a very special pull on me. 
Love and light,

"Dreams are the playground of Unicorns."

- Unknown

For this story, I have been researching unicorns. Though, I admit, they have never been a fascination of mine, but its symbolic nature drew me in ~ the story behind the pictorial mask. This page is really just a reference to ways that I can play with ideas, displaying snippets of what I read. The excerpt below captures my imagination with things like 'cycles of time', which instantly remind me of Chronos (the personification of time in pre-socratic philosophy and later literature). It also resonates with karma and the cycles of life, spiritual or biological. This is how my brain ticks. All things connect in some way, it's just a matter of linking the dots. The undertones or seemingly irrelevant areas are usually the interlinking parts. It's how I blend elements together in writing but use a 'normal' viewpoint with believable, everyday, characters. Now this may not seem relevant to a love story, but this is a look at behind-the-scenes of how stories come together. Not all elements of research are used, especially in context, but little pieces grow into something new. Hopefully some of the information below will inspire you, too. 

The unicorn, unlike all other horned animals save perhaps the rhinoceros, is a single-horned creature. While the two-horned animals are linked, symbolically, to the realm of duality and matter, the unicorn's single horn reminds us that its domain is the realm of unity; a realm that transcends and exists beyond the bounds of matter and duality.

The single spiralled horn is a symbol of the endless, repeating 'Cycles of Time'. It is also symbolic of the sword, and as the sword symbolizes the mind, the unicorn's horn also signifies unity of thought and purity of reason. The single horn protrudes from the top of the unicorn's head which is the location of the crown chakra. The crown chakra is a border between realms; representing the highest level which our mind can attain and is the spiritual gateway to the higher realms of spirituality and divine consciousness.

This magical and enchanting animal appears to only a rare few and can bestow magic, miracles and wisdom to those who are pure of heart and virtuous in their deeds. The unicorn reminds us that we are in the presence of a highly spiritual essence whose boundless domain encompasses all realms matter and spirit.

To kill a unicorn is to destroy a divine incarnation of purity, perfection, and wonder. It is a deed which burdens the individual who commits the act with an enormous karmic debt.

White is symbolically similar to silver, representing the lunar and feminine aspects of receptivity, instinct, intuition and virginity. Virginity in its truest metaphysical and alchemical aspect represents the unadulterated (untainted) mind and spirit; it is the prima materia (pure matter) and the prisca sapientia (pristine knowledge, or wisdom). It is for this reason that to have a Unicorn appear is both a great honour and divine gift. For, as stated before, only the pure of heart and virtuous of deed are deserving to have a unicorn appear to them.

When a unicorn is portrayed along with a lion it symbolizes the union of the feminine (white, lunar) and masculine (gold, solar) aspects of our dual nature. This symbolism also represents the 'Alchemical Marriage'.

As the symbolism of the unicorn is deep, pure, and magical, very few individuals are pure and virtuous enough to have a unicorn appear to them in any form, and are very blessed if a Unicorn should someday appear on their Path.

~ Joseph Panek

Ancient wisdom is revealed through symbolism, 
mythology, metaphor, sacred writings, natural cycles, and everyday life.

I love to write about connecting souls. Attraction in physical form is great, but attraction on a deeper level, emotional, can create a bond that survives lifetimes. Think about the ancient love stories that have endured over the centuries. 
These are not tales of love on the level of just physical lust but are soulful, meaningful, and last an eternity. Quite often there is some obstacle to overcome or realisation that comes too late and the story is retold a some warning against ignoring the heart/soul. 
Sacred Marriage

The Alchemical Marriage is the union of duality and the most revered and possibly powerful union. It is the perfect conjunction, intimate bonding of duality and signifies the pure, deep harmony which occurs whenever the masculine and feminine elements of nature combines into one.
Alchemical marriage is the marriage of the soul and both the feminine and masculine aspects of our true being--the real and enduring spiritual self. 
Hieros Gamos

The notion of hieros gamos is symbolic or mythological context, notably in alchemy and hence in Jungian psychology. It relates to a marriage / connection between a god and a goddess. 

The union of god and goddess manifested in ancient Egypt as Osiris and Isis, in Greece as Adonis and Aphrodite, in Hinduism as Shiva and Shakti, in Buddhism as Tara and Avalokitesvara. The sacred marriage symbolizes the "mystical union of opposites," with the bride representing the "incarnate self" and the bridegroom representing the "disincarnate Self." The goddess symbolizes the divine presence within the physical world while the god symbolizes the transcendent spirit; the sacred marriage is necessary to unite the physical and spiritual worlds in order to engender the fertility that brings forth life. 

Anima and Animus

Because a male's sensitivity is often lesser or repressed, the anima is one of the most significant autonomous complexes of all. It is said to manifest itself by appearing in dreams. It also influences a man's interactions with women and his attitudes toward them and vice versa for women and the animus. Jung said that "the encounter with the shadow is the 'apprentice-piece' in the individual's development...that with the anima is the 'masterpiece'". Jung viewed the anima process as being one of the sources of creative ability.

Jung believed anima development has four distinct levels, which he named Eve, Helen, Mary and Sophia. In broad terms, the entire process of anima development in a man is about the male subject opening up to emotionality, and in that way a broader spirituality, by creating a new conscious paradigm that includes intuitive processes, creativity and imagination, and psychic sensitivity towards himself and others where it might not have existed previously.

Star Bright
I have a thing about stars 
and staring up at the night sky.

There is something so peaceful and uplifting about those little twinkling lights in the vastness of a deep midnight sea that lure the eyes and cause the mind to wonder.  Such magical magnificence that wishes are made on.   

Rihanna - Diamonds.mp3

Monocerous is a faint winter constellation that sits near the celestial equator. It is one of 88 official modern constellations, and was among the 48 constellations listed by the Second Century Greek astronomer Ptolemy.
If you think the name sounds a bit like rhinoceros, you’re right. Both names come from Greek word for “horn.” While rhinoceros means “horned nose,” monoceros means “single horn,” in contrast with the many two-horned animals the ancient Greeks would have been familiar with. Some translate the name to mean unicorn, though it is not clear that the creature the Greeks named monoceros was meant to be the same as the unicorn, a creature that was much sought after during the middle ages and renaissance.

The constellation sits in the northern sky bordered by Canis Major, Canis Minor, Gemini, Hydra, Lepus, Orion, and Puppis.

It contains 32 stars, four of which make up its zigzagging shape. It is not easily seen with the naked eye, as it has only two bright stars, Alpha Monocerotis and Gamma Monocerotis. Even so, many of the stars it contains are interesting. Beta Monocerotis is a triple star system, made up of three stars that form a triangle, while Epsilon Monocerotis is a fixed binary system. Possibly the most interesting star in the constellation is Plaskett’s Star, a binary system with a combined mass that is said to be 100 times larger our own Sun.

While most ancient constellations are rich with mythological associations, monoceros actually isn’t. Though we know unicorns to be mythological creatures today, monoceros was considered to be a real animal in ancient Greece. There is a lot of controversy over whether the name was actually intended to describe a unicorn, as we would understand it today, or some other creature. There is much speculation that the name referred to a mutation of a two-horned animal, such as the African oryx, goat, or some type of deer, or even that it was coined to describe the rhinoceros. Later illustrators eventually decided on the classical white unicorn popular in European heraldry. Whatever animal it was supposed to be, it is immortalized in the sky to this very day.

~  Jaime McLeod

Monoceros was first depicted in 1612 under the name Monoceros Unicornis on a globe by the Dutch theologian and cartographer Petrus Plancius. This was the same globe on which Camelopardalis, another of his inventions, first appeared.

In 1624 the German astronomer Jacob Bartsch depicted it under the name Unicornu (sic) on a star chart in his book Usus Astronomicus Planisphaerii Stellati and as a result he was sometimes wrongly credited with its invention. In his book, Bartsch pointed to several passages in the Bible that supposedly mention unicorns, although these are now regarded as mistranslations. It is not clear whether Plancius introduced the constellation because of these Biblical references, but the unicorn has long been regarded as a Christian symbol of purity. The Polish astronomer Johannes Hevelius adopted Monoceros in his influential star atlas and catalogue published in 1690 which ensured its acceptance by other astronomers.

Joseph Scaliger is reported to have found Monoceros on an ancient Persian sphere. French astronomer Camille Flammarion believed that a former constellation, Neper (the "Auger"), occupied the area of the sky now home to Monoceros and Microscopium, but this is disputed.
Chinese asterisms Sze Fūh, the Four Great Canals; Kwan Kew; and Wae Choo, the Outer Kitchen, all lay within the boundaries of Monoceros.

VISTA Reveals the Secret of the Unicorn ~ VISTA survey telescope reveals an extraordinary landscape of glowing tendrils of gas, dark clouds and young stars within the constellation of Monoceros (the Unicorn). This star-forming region, known as Monoceros R2, is embedded within a huge dark cloud. The region is almost completely obscured by interstellar dust when viewed in visible light, but is spectacular in the infrared.

Monoceros is not easily seen with the naked eye, containing only a few fourth magnitude stars. Beta Monocerotis is a triple star system, the three stars forming a triangle which seems to be fixed. Monoceros also contains Plaskett's Star, which is a massive binary system whose combined mass is estimated to be that of almost 100 Suns put together. Plaskett's Star, also known as HR 2422 and V640 Monocerotis, is a spectroscopic binary at a distance of around 6600 light-years. It is one of the most massive binary stars known.

Monoceros contains two super-Earth exoplanets in one planetary system: COROT-7b was detected by the COROT satellite and COROT-7c was detected by HARPS from ground-based telescopes. Until the announcement of Kepler-10b in January 2011, COROT-7b was the smallest exoplanet to have its diameter measured, at 1.58 times that of the Earth (which would give it a volume 3.95 times Earth's). Both planets in this system were discovered in 2009.

An exoplanet or extrasolar planet is a planet that orbits a star other than the Sun. About 1 in 5 Sun-like stars have an "Earth-sized" planet in the habitable zone. Assuming there are 200 billion stars in the Milky Way, one can hypothesize that there are 11 billion potentially habitable Earth-sized planets in the Milky Way. The discovery of exoplanets has intensified interest in the search for extraterrestrial life. There is special interest in planets that orbit in a star's habitable zone, where it is possible for liquid water, a prerequisite for life on Earth, to exist on the surface. The study of planetary habitability also considers a wide range of other factors in determining the suitability of a planet for hosting life.

There are no legends associated with the constellation, as it is a modern figure, and none of its stars have names.
Little Snipits of Info

The unicorn is one of a very few mythological creatures that are considered to be beneficial in almost all traditions. It is universally beautiful, mysterious, and difficult to capture or tame. 

Unicorns are prominent in heraldic symbolism, usually with a spiral horn, sometimes of red and black. In heraldry, unicorns are often shown with a collar and a broken chain, indicating that they have freed themselves from bondage and cannot be taken again. 

Unicorn horns are said to be harder than diamonds and to be able to neutralize poisons. Unicorn tears can heal both physical wounds and sorrows of the heart.

In modern literature, the lure and mystery of unicorns remains. In the recent Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowlings, powerful wands are made with a core of unicorn hair. The blood of a unicorn is also reputed to keep a person alive even if he is very close to death. The ongoing body of literature associated with unicorns and the powers attributed to them will undoubtedly continue to add to their value as symbols of freedom, healing and beauty. 

The unicorn was viewed as the Christ or Incarnation and the death of a unicorn as the Passion of Christ. This allowed a pagan symbol to become highly esteemed within the church. In fact, a grouping or herd of unicorns is called a “blessing” of unicorns.


The Lion and the Unicorn are symbols of the United Kingdom. They are, properly speaking, heraldic supporters appearing in the full Royal coat of arms of the United Kingdom. The lion stands for England and the unicorn for Scotland. The combination dates back to the 1603 accession of James I of England who was already James VI of Scotland. By extension, they have also been used in the Coat of Arms of Canada since 1921. More HERE and HERE

Two versions of the royal arms exist: that used in Scotland gives more emphasis to the Scottish elements, placing the unicorn on the left and giving it a crown, whereas the version used in England and elsewhere gives the English elements more prominence.

Royal coat of arms of Scotland

In heraldry the unicorn is best known as the symbol of Scotland. The unicorn was chosen because it was seen as a proud and haughty beast which would rather die than be captured, just as Scots would fight to remain sovereign and unconquered.

Two crowned and chained unicorns, the dexter supporting a banner of the arms, (only in this instance is the lion depicted facing away from the lance, whereas when flown correctly the lion should face towards or respect the lance or, in most cases, the flag pole); the sinister supporting the national flag of Scotland. The compartment features a number of thistles, the national flower of Scotland.

The royal coat of arms of Scotland was the official coat of arms of the King of Scots from its adoption in the 12th century until the end of the Kingdom of Scotland in 1707. More HERE

Golden coins known as the unicorn and half-unicorn, both with a unicorn on the obverse, were used in Scotland in the 15th and 16th century. In the same realm, carved unicorns were often used as finials on the pillars of Mercat crosses, and denoted that the settlement was a royal burgh. Certain noblemen such as the Earl of Kinnoull were given special permission to use the unicorn in their arms, as an augmentation of honour. The crest for Clan Cunningham bears a unicorn head.

The Lady and the Unicorn

The Lady and the Unicorn (French: La Dame à la licorne) is the modern title given to a series of six tapestries woven in Flanders from wool and silk, from designs ("cartoons") drawn in Paris around 1500.[1] The set, on display in the Musée national du Moyen Âge (former Musée de Cluny) in Paris, is often considered one of the greatest works of art of the Middle Ages in Europe.

Five of the tapestries are commonly interpreted as depicting the five senses – taste, hearing, sight, smell, and touch. The sixth displays the words "À mon seul désir". The tapestry's meaning is obscure, but has been interpreted as representing love or understanding. Each of the six tapestries depicts a noble lady with the unicorn on her left and a lion on her right; some include a monkey in the scene. The pennants, as well as the armour of the Unicorn and Lion in the tapestry bear the arms of the sponsor, Jean Le Viste, a powerful nobleman in the court of King Charles VII. 

However, a very recent study of the heraldry appears to lend credence to another hypothesis - previously dismissed - that the real sponsor of the tapestry is Antoine II Le Viste (1470-1534), a descendant of the younger branch of the Le Viste family and an important figure at the court of Charles VIII, Louis XII and François I.
The tapestries are created in the style of mille-fleurs (meaning: "thousand flowers").

The tapestries were rediscovered in 1841 by Prosper Mérimée in Boussac castle (owned at the time by the subprefect of the Creuse) where they had been suffering damage from their storage conditions. In 1844 the novelist George Sand saw them and brought public attention to the tapestries in her works at the time (most notably in her novel Jeanne), in which she correctly dated them to the end of the fifteenth century, using the ladies' costumes for reference. Nevertheless, the artefacts continued to be threatened by damp and mould until 1863, when they were brought to the Thermes de Cluny in Paris. Careful conservation has restored them nearly to their former glory. They are presently on display in the Musée de Cluny (Musée du Moyen-Âge), Paris. More HERE

The Lady and the Unicorn: À mon seul désir 
The Hunt of the Unicorn

The Hunt of the Unicorn, or the Unicorn Tapestries, is a series of seven tapestries dating from between 1495 and 1505, now in The Cloisters in New York, probably woven in Brussels or Liège. 

 The tapestries show a group of noblemen and hunters in pursuit of a unicorn. The Hunt for the Unicorn was a common theme in late medieval and renaissance works of art and literature. The tapestries were woven in wool, metallic threads, and silk. The vibrant colours, still evident today, were produced from dye plants: weld (yellow), madder (red), and woad (blue). One of the panels, The Mystic Capture of the Unicorn, only survives in two fragments.

The tapestries are subject to scholarly debate about the iconography, the artists who designed the tapestries, and questions surrounding the sequence in which they were meant to be hung. Possibly the seven tapestries were not originally hung together.

It was posited by James J. Rorimer in 1942 that they were commissioned by Anne of Brittany, to celebrate her marriage to Louis XII, King of France on 6 December 1491. The clue derived from the occurrence of A and reversed E tied with a cord in a bowknot throughout the series of tapestries. As Rorimer surmised, the letters A and E are interpreted as the first and the last letters of Anne's name, citied the elisions in the medieval age.
However Margaret B. Freeman refutes this fairly convincingly in her monograph of 1976, a conclusion which is supported by Adolph S. Cavallo in his 1998 work.

The original pagan myths about The Hunt of the Unicorn refer to an animal with a single horn that can only be tamed by a virgin; Christian scholars translated this into an allegory for Christ's relationship with the Virgin Mary.

The original workmanship of the tapestries still remains unanswered at the present. The design of the tapestries in the effect of the richness of figurative elements, near to the art of oil painting and influenced by the French style and reflected the woodcuts and metal cuts printed in Paris in the late fifteenth century.

The tapestries were rich in floral in the background as a garden, features the "millefleurs" style, refers to a background style of a variety of small botanic, which was invented by the weavers of Gothic age, popular during the late medieval and wilted after the early Renaissance. There are more than a hundred plants represented in the tapestries, which scatter across the green background on the panels, eighty-five of which are identified by botanists whose interior meaning in the tapestries were designed to recall the tapestries' major themes. 

In the unicorn series, the hunt takes place within a closed garden, the Hortus conclusus, take the literal meaning of "enclosed garden", which was not only in conjunction with the Annunciation, but also a representation of the garden in the secular world.

The seven tapestries are:
The Start of the Hunt
The Unicorn at the Fountain
The Unicorn Attacked
The Unicorn Defending Himself
The Unicorn is captured by the Virgin (two fragments)
The Unicorn Killed and Brought to the Castle
The Unicorn in Captivity

In the modern research, based on the possible that the unicorn tapestries was designed for the purpose as a bedroom ensemble, the five large pieces fit the back area of wall, while the other two pieces serve as the coverlet, or overhead canopy. Other sources give slightly different titles and different sequences. The factors that affect this are primarily threefold. 
  • Firstly the nature of the tapestries themselves, which exhibit differences of manufacture and size, suggesting that the first and last may be independent works or form a different series. 
  • Secondly the nature of the classic stag hunt, usually cited to Livre de la Chasse by Gaston III, Count of Foix of Foix. 
  • Thirdly the established story of the unicorn hunt, where the unicorn is made docile by a virgin, and then captured, wounded or killed. In addition the symbolism of the story needs to be taken into account.
The tapestries were owned by the La Rochefoucauld family of France for several centuries, with first mention of them showing up in the family's 1728 inventory. At that time five of the tapestries were hanging in a bedroom in the family's Château de Verteuil, Charente and two were stored in a hall adjacent to the chapel.

During the French Revolution the tapestries were looted from the château and reportedly were used to cover potatoes – a period during which they apparently sustained damage. By the end of the 1880s they were again in the possession of the family. A visitor to the château described them as quaint 15th century wall hangings, yet showing "incomparable freshness and grace". The same visitor records the set as consisting of seven pieces, though one was by that time in fragments and being used as bed curtains.

John D. Rockefeller, Jr. bought them in 1922 for about one million US dollars.[23] Six of the tapestries hung in Rockefeller's house until The Cloisters was built when he donated them to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1938 and at the same time secured for the collection the two fragments the La Rochefauld family had retained. The set now hangs in The Cloisters which houses the museum's medieval collection.

Historic Scotland commissioned a set of seven hand-made tapestries for Stirling Castle, a recreation of The Hunt of the Unicorn tapestries, as part of a project to furnish the castle as it was in the 16th century. It was part-funded by the Quinque Foundation of the United States'. All seven currently hang in the Queen's Inner Hall in the Royal Palace.

Historians studying the reign of James IV believe that a similar series of "Unicorn" tapestries were part of the Scottish Royal tapestry collection. 
The Unicorn is Found
The Unicorn is Killed and Brought to the Castle 

At right, a lord and a lady receive the body of the unicorn in front of their castle. They are surrounded by their attendants, with more curious onlookers peering through windows of the turret behind them. The dead animal is slung on the back of a horse, his horn already cut off but still entangled in thorny oak branches. The rosary in the hand of the lady and the three other women standing behind the lord encourage a deeper reading of the scene, perhaps as a symbolic grieving.
Snippets of Info

Shakespeare scholars describe unicorns being captured by a hunter standing in front of a tree, the unicorn goaded into charging; the hunter would step aside the last moment and the unicorn would embed its horn deeply into the tree.

Unicorns are believed to look as whimsical as it could be, normally on the illusion of being immaculately white as if it’s the horse of the Heavens. The age of unicorns dates back and can be recounted through a plethora of Greek writings of literary geniuses such as Ctesias, Strabo, Pliny the Younger and Aelian.

One suggestion is that the unicorn is based on the extinct rhinocerus species Elasmotherium, a huge Eurasian mammal native to the steppes, south of the range of the woolly rhinoceros of Ice Age Europe. Elasmotherium looked little like a horse, but it had a large single horn in its forehead. It became extinct about the same time as the rest of the glacial age megafauna.

Unicorn seals of the Indus Valley Civilization ~ The first objects unearthed from Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro, major sites of the Indus Valley Civilization, were small stone seals inscribed with elegant depictions of animals, including a unicorn-like figure, and marked with Indus script writing which still baffles scholars. These seals are dated back to 2500 B.C. The "unicorn" figures on the seals have been interpreted as representations of aurochs—a type of large wild cattle that formerly inhabited Europe, Asia and North Africa—or derivatives of aurochs.
Lyonesse - Horse Lore

Lyonesse is a country in Arthurian legend, particularly in the story of Tristan and Iseult. Said to border Cornwall, it is most notable as the home of the hero Tristan, whose father was king. In later traditions Lyonesse is said to have sunk beneath the waves some time after the Tristan stories take place, making it similar to Ys and other lost lands in medieval Celtic tales, and perhaps connecting it with the Isles of Scilly.

In medieval Arthurian legend, there are no references to the sinking of Lyonesse, because the name originally referred to a still-existing place. Lyonesse is an English alteration of French Léoneis or Léonois (earlier Loönois), a development of Lodonesia, the Latin name for Lothian in Scotland.

Continental writers of Arthurian romances were often puzzled by the internal geography of Great Britain; thus it is that the author French Prose Tristan appears to place Léonois contiguous, by land, to Cornwall. In English adaptations of the French tales, Léonois, now "Lyonesse", becomes a kingdom wholly distinct from Lothian, and closely associated with the Cornish region, though its exact geographical location remained unspecified. The name was not attached to Cornish legends of lost coastal lands until the reign of Elizabeth I of England.

However, the legendary lost land between Land's End and Scilly has a distinct Cornish name: Lethowsow. This derives from the Cornish name for the Seven Stones reef, on the reputed site of the lost land's capital and the site of the notorious wreck of the Torrey Canyon. The name means "the milky ones", from the constant white water surrounding the reef.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson's Arthurian epic Idylls of the King describes Lyonesse as the site of the final battle between Arthur and Mordred. One passage in particular references legends of Lyonesse as a land fated to sink beneath the ocean:

Then rose the King and moved his host by night
And ever pushed Sir Mordred, league by league,
Back to the sunset bound of Lyonesse—
A land of old upheaven from the abyss
By fire, to sink into the abyss again;
Where fragments of forgotten peoples dwelt,
And the long mountains ended in a coast
Of ever-shifting sand, and far away
The phantom circle of a moaning sea.

Deriving from a false etymology of Lyonesse, the 'City of Lions' was said in some later traditions to be the capital of the legendary kingdom, situated on what is today the Seven Stones reef.

The legend of a sunken kingdom appears in both Cornish and Breton mythology. In Christian times it came to be viewed as a sort of Cornish Sodom and Gomorrah, an example of divine wrath provoked by unvirtuous living, although the parallels were limited in that Lyonesse remained in Cornish thought very much a mystical and mythical land, comparable to the role of Tir na nÓg in Irish mythology.

There is a Breton parallel in the tale of the Cité d'Ys, similarly drowned as a result of its debauchery with a single virtuous survivor escaping on a horse, in this case King Gradlon. The Welsh equivalent to Lyonesse and Ker Ys is Cantre'r Gwaelod, a legendary drowned kingdom in Cardigan Bay.

It is often suggested that the tale of Lyonesse represents an extraordinary survival of folk memory of the flooding of the Isles of Scilly and Mount's Bay near Penzance. For example, the Cornish name of St Michael's Mount is Karrek Loos y'n Koos - literally, "the grey rock in the wood". Cornish people around Penzance still get occasional glimpses at extreme low water of a sunken forest in Mount's Bay, where petrified tree stumps become visible. The importance of the maintenance of this memory can be seen in that it came to be associated with the legendary British hero Arthur, although the date of its inundation is actually c.2500 BC.

The Vyvyan family of Cornwall takes its coat of arms from the legend, in which a man named Vyvyan, governor of Lyonesse, escaped the inundation by having ready bridled and saddled in his stable a white horse. To this day the family's shield bears a white horse fully bridled with one foot over the waves. The horse leapt, with Vyvyan aboard, and where it landed, there the Vyvyan family set its roots. (Trelowarren)~High Sheriff of Cornwall. This right came from the Earldom of Cornwall. 

The Vyvyans are a prominent Cornish family who were members of Parliament, baronets, and landowners in Penwith and Kerrier since the 15th century. The Vyvyan family have had a large estate called Trelowarren in the parish of Mawgan-in-Meneage in west Cornwall for nearly 600 years. They moved to Trelowarren in 1427 from Trevegean, St. Buryan when they acquired Trelowarren.

Trewan Hall ~ Trewan Hall (pronounced Trew-an) is a historic manor and campsite, in the parish of St Columb Major, Cornwall, England, UK. Although the site is not open to the public, it holds annual open days as part of the National Gardens Scheme. It was the ancestral home of the Vivian family until it was sold in 1920. In 1697, Mary Vivian, of Trewan Hall, St Columb Major, married a distant cousin Sir Richard Vyvyan, 3rd Baronet of Colan, Cornwall. This uniting two branches of the family which had been separated for three centuries.  Sir Richard Vyvyan was involved in the Jacobite uprising in Cornwall of 1715 and was imprisoned in the Tower of London. 

Art by Ruth Ray