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Unicorns can represent a variety of things, but are almost always positive. They can symbolize freed, innocence and purity, healing, joy, hope, diversity and magic. They have come to represent something rare and amazing in this day and age.
Unicorns are said to have the ability to travel between worlds and were known for their incredible speed. Many cultures had unicorns as part of their mythos.
Stories of unicorns go all the way back to 400 BCE in Greece. However, they have been very popular throughout Europe for over 2,000 years and Julius Caesar claimed they could be found in the forests of Germany. It took on it's symbolism of innocence and an allegory for Christ through the Christian Church. During the medieval age, the popularity of unicorns in art and literature increased dramatically. Some even sold tusks and called them unicorn horns. Because of their relation to purity, they were often beside young women in art, as seen in the image.
The Kirin or Qilin is often considered the asian Unicorn. In one myth, the unicorn was the first creature to be created. Unlike the western unicorn who could be ferocious, the Eastern unicorn was said to be so gentle that it wouldn't even hurt a fly or trod on the grass when they walked. According to another legend, the unicorn will stay in another realm until mankind rids itself of evil. The chinese Qilin is an amalgam of several creatures, as seen in the image, including tiger, deer, dragon and horse. The Qilin is also a benevolent unicorn that is said to offer protection and guidance. It is said to have the gift or prophesy. The japanese Sin-You is said to differentiate wrong from right and would impale wrongdoers, quite different from the previous unicorns. Vietnam as the qué ly or lan, another mix of creatures including lion, dog and deer. It is one of the most sacred creatures and is a symbol of good luck and joy.
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