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THE HARE HOODED

The explanation for this unusual image, and it is unusual--it apparently occurs nowhere else--is that it shows the hare wearing the item of clothing for which she is routinely hunted and killed, the hood whose lining is usually her pelt. She has her head through the face of the hood, her ears outside because they can’t fit inside. So why is she shown wearing something so ill-suited? It’s part of the sub-plot of her reversal of rôles with the hunter/tailor which runs through these books with her subduing him, capturing and finally, skinning him. To  follow the logic of this theme (the world upside down), if the hood the hare wears is lined, we may conjecture that it is lined with 100% human hair. A pun of hair::hare was not available to the audience of this book (Latin, French) but speculation about the hare’s unusual headgear would inevitably lead to this conclusion.

The Breviary text above offers a prayer appropriate to the image:  Deliver me, Lord, from the evil man, Save me from the iniquitous. As Tertullian says, “We are all, like the hare, the focus of the hunt.”

(B.L. Yates Thompson MS 8, Winter Breviary of Renaud de Bar, fol. 202.)

Trivet 20 cm sq
Ref. 006c
Price: €37.50 + p&p

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