Literature & History Archives - Page 3 of 3 - Aves Noir
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Charles Dickens & Grip the Raven

Grip was a beloved pet of Dickens. The author inserted the blabbing raven as a character in his 1841 serialized mystery novel, Barnaby Rudge. We know that Poe reviewed Barnaby Rudge and commented on the use of the talking raven, feeling the bird should have loomed larger in the plot. Literary experts surmise that the talking raven of Barnaby Rudge inspired Poe's most famous poem, The...

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Yata-Garasu – The Ravens of Japanese Myth

One of the oldest symbols in Japanese mythology is the 3-Legged Bird, called Yatagarasu (八咫烏) in Japanese. This legendary bird was said to have led the Emperor Jimmu from Kumano no kuni (熊の国), which is present-day Wakyama Prefecture, to Yamato no kuni (大和国), which is present-day Nara Prefecture. The three-legged (or "tripedal") bird is a creature found in various mythologies and arts of Asia, Asia Minor,...

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When I See an Elephant Fly…

One of my fondest memories as a little girl was reading any one of my Little Golden Books to my stuffed animal audience, with my favorite being Dumbo. As I grew up, it evolved into me sitting alone in my aunt's cozy living room watching Disney's Dumbo. I must have seen it a hundred times, and it is the only one that, to this day, I...

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A Gathering of Crows

Brian Keene is a two-time Bram Stoker Award winning horror author, first in 2001 for his non-fiction work Jobs In Hell and then again in 2003 for his debut novel, the post-apocalyptic zombie tale The Rising. In 2004, he won the Shocker Award for his non-fiction work Sympathy For the Devil. His other novels include Dead Sea, Ghoul, City of the Dead, Terminal, The Conqueror Worms, Fear...

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Raven Lore: Origin of Light

According to the Native American legend told by many Pacific Northwest tribes, including the Inuit, "In the beginning the world was in total darkness." This is a common beginning to most creation stories, but this one has a twist. The Raven, who had existed from the beginning of time, was tired of groping about and bumping into things in the dark. One day the Raven came upon the mouth...

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Ravens in Celtic Mythology

Ravens figure heavily in Celtic mythology and legend. They were linked to darkness and death - especially the death of warriors in battle. Celtic war goddesses often took the form of a raven. In "The Dream of Rhonabwy", the knight Owein battles King Arthur in a dream world assisted by ravens. Some tales suggest that the great King Arthur himself was turned in to a raven...

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In the Company of Crows and Ravens

John Marzluff and Tony Angell examine the often surprising ways that crows and humans interact. The authors contend that those interactions reflect a process of “cultural coevolution.” They offer a challenging new view of the human-crow dynamic—a view that may change our thinking not only about crows but also about ourselves....

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