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Still Waters

Was Uffington White Horse really a unicorn?

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A historical campaign group has launched a £50,000 bid to have the world famous Uffington White Horse made into a unicorn.

The plan by the 'Save the Unicorn at Uffington' has more than 1,000 members and is being lead by Bronze Age enthusiasts.

They claim the 3,000-year-old horse made from crushed white chalk in Uffington, Oxfordshire, was originally meant to be a depiction of the mythical horned beast.

The amateur historians have now received financial backing from 'well-wishers' including a £50,000 anonymous donation towards adding a 75-foot long horn to the horse.

The Uffington White Horse - which measures 374 feet - or 110 metres - is owned and managed by The National Trust - who have now received a proposal about the horn from the campaigners.

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Early British culture was dominated by the horse, small bronze statues of horses aren't that rare from this period have any bronze unicorns been found? the horse (many stylized like the Uffington horse) is found on coins from this period is there any with a unicorn on? i think not.

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Considering the earliest known reference to an animal that can be attributed 'a unicorn' was some 2,500 years ago in ancient Greece, I find it doubtful that ancient Britons some 3,000 years ago were 'fascinated' by this mythological creature.

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In The Pattern of the Past, based on his dowsing of the site, Guy Underwood proposed an alternative figure of a more recognizable horse, but certainly no horn. I'm sure figures of Underwood's interpretation have been posted here before on another UWH thread

EDIT: Found the link

uff_horse.png

Edited by Oppono Astos

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IMO, kind of stupid.. They want to take a piece of 3,000 art and make a modern addition to it. May as well start defacing other art to suit our wishes as well, blech. Mona Lisa mustache anyone?

I have to think that if the original carvers took the time to make something that has lasted so long, well if it was meant to have a horn they would have carved that in too, and it would have survived just as well as the rest of the carving has.

If these folks want a unicorn so bad.. Why don't they just take their money and find another hill to carve it into?

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To me that would just be ruining it. I agree with rashore, if it was supposed to be a unicorn, it would be. Why can`t we just leave special things alone, and not try to change them <_<

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How on earthy can they even try and justify defacing an ancient work of art like that?

The stupidity of some people never ceases to amaze me :|

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I say we put a saddle on it. With a traditional American cowbow too.

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Funny, I always thought that the Uffington Horse looked much more like a feline profile. But, what does a Yank know anyway ...

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Unicorns are stupid.

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I think that the original Uffington Horse....may have been a stylized dragon...

There is hill very near it called Dragon Hill.

http://www.berkshirehistory.com/archaeology/dragon_hill.html

and it may have been put there to represent the natural electro-magnetic-(plasma?) energy lines that criss cross the

countryside (and the whole earth)

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Yep, its a unicorn, no doubt about it.

uffair.jpgAAAAAqO_RLcAAAAAAHFwKQ.jpg?v=1190532585000

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The Unicorn was probably an attempt by Greeks to describe the Indian Rhinoceros to the folks back home. They said it looked like 'a river horse with a horn on its nose', which it does. "River horse," in Greek, is 'hippo-potamus," and the Greeks knew about them through trade with Egypt. Later, people who didn't know that a 'river horse' was a different sort of horse indeed, just shortened it to 'a horse with a horn'.

That's my theory, anyway.

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They need to leave it alone...if there is no evidence of it being more than what it appears to be....just let it be what it is. The idea of it being mystical is goofy...it appears to me to be reverence to something they thought was extremely important...leave it as it stands...

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Yes. Theres no need to stick a horn on it. Its a horse: leave it at that. Hey, at least horses actually exist.

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It may not be a horse,but for sure it never was a unicorn. It looks great as it is. Put a horn on it would make it look really stupid.

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you can't go around solving all your problems by turning them into unicorns..trust me I've tried.

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Ah well, seems its already been altered...

Or it could be that the Oxford Mail has surpassed itself in poor reporting/research - they have managed to use a picture of the Hackpen White Horse to illustrate its update to the story.

post-28757-0-70163600-1324760528_thumb.j

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uffair.jpg

A horse with fangs?

280px-Uffington-White-Horse-sat.jpg

It doesn't look like a horse, it looks like some sort of cat.

.

Edited by Abramelin

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I think it's a cat as well. The body is long and slinky like a cougar, the legs are to short for a horse. Those look like whiskers to me!

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I think it's a cat as well. The body is long and slinky like a cougar, the legs are to short for a horse. Those look like whiskers to me!

Yeah, that's even better:

280px-Uffington-White-Horse-sat.jpg

Day-9-Leopard-Running.jpg

Edited by Abramelin

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It could be many different animals.

A horse (or unicorn) would be low on my list.

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It could be many different animals.

A horse (or unicorn) would be low on my list.

A bit more about what kind of animal it could have been originally:

Stylistically, the horse has often been compared with horses depicted on 1st century BC coins from southern England. Although there are clear similarities, there are also important differences. The coins have a rather charming horse motif made up of thick, bowed bodies, straight-line leg and tail segments and big, dotty knees. The peculiarities of these horses are largely due to the successive inabilities of several generations of coin engravers to copy the original Macedonian coins where the design first came from. However, in terms of horseness these engravers really understood horses.

The same cannot be said for the carvers at Uffington. There is a vague sense of horseness, but you could just as easily argue its sense of dogness or dragon-ness or even ferretness.

http://armchairprehistory.com/2009/12/19/white-horses-and-wet-weather/

This figure resembles a cat or dragon more than a horse, but it had been known as a horse for many centuries. Its present appearance is attributed to the Iron Age, parallels having been drawn with disjointed horses on coins of immediate pre-Roman Britain. However, the ancient attribution as a horse, not a cat or dragon leads one to suspect that the appearance has not always been the same. Cut in the north escarpment of the Berkshire Downs overlooking the Icknield Way, the figure faces northwest on a slope of thirty degrees. At present, it is 365 feet in length, and can be seen from at least 20 miles away.

http://www.cantab.net/users/michael.behrend/repubs/pennick_ahfe/pages/main.html

.

Edited by Abramelin

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uffair.jpg

A horse with fangs?

280px-Uffington-White-Horse-sat.jpg

It doesn't look like a horse, it looks like some sort of cat.

.

What you're interpreting as fangs could just as easily be seen as lips.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&safe=off&biw=987&bih=609&gbv=2&tbm=isch&sa=1&q=horse+neighing&oq=horse+neighing&aq=f&aqi=g1g-S5&aql=&gs_sm=e&gs_upl=10247l14404l0l14835l9l9l0l2l2l0l229l1370l0.3.4l7l0

The fact that there are a number of other such carvings throughout England all of which are in-arguably horses would tend to lead to the conclusion that it too is a horse.

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What you're interpreting as fangs could just as easily be seen as lips.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&safe=off&biw=987&bih=609&gbv=2&tbm=isch&sa=1&q=horse+neighing&oq=horse+neighing&aq=f&aqi=g1g-S5&aql=&gs_sm=e&gs_upl=10247l14404l0l14835l9l9l0l2l2l0l229l1370l0.3.4l7l0

The fact that there are a number of other such carvings throughout England all of which are in-arguably horses would tend to lead to the conclusion that it too is a horse.

Total New Age Tosh!

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