1560 Gesner myth of the glutton wolverine

1560 Gesner myth of the glutton wolverine

C011/0857 Rights Managed

Request low-res file

530 pixels on longest edge, unwatermarked

Request/Download high-res file

Uncompressed file size: 60.2MB

Downloadable file size: 7.6MB

Price image Pricing

Please login to use the price calculator


Caption: The Wolverine (Gulo gulo) or Glutton, squeezing between trees to defecate before resuming feeding. From Conrad Gesner's "Icones Animalium" published by Christof Froschover, Zurich, 1560. The myth that the Wolverine eats so much that it had to force out its faeces may stem from its german name Vielfrab meaning "devours much". The German name however may be an example of false etymology, as the Old Swedish name fjellfras, meaning mountain cat, may have become Vielfrab in German. Though not a correct observation, it was a very early attempt to describe animal behaviour using illustration (coming originally from Olaus Magnus' Carta Marina map of 1539). Topsell republished the figure in 1607 describing how "It may be that God has ordained such a creature in those countries where it is found to express the abominable gluttony of the men there, so that they may know their deformed nature'.

Release details: Model release not required. Property release not required.

Keywords: 16th century, animal, animalium, animals, artwork, behaviour, bestiary, colour, conrad, early, folklore, gesner, gessner, glutton, gulo, gulo gulo, historiae, icones, illustration, magnus, middle ages, moral, myth, natural history, wolverine, woodcut, wrong

Licence fees: A licence fee will be charged for any media (low or high resolution) used in your project.