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 Renwick Cockatrice

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Ian
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PostSubject: Renwick Cockatrice   Thu 05 Jun 2008, 12:47 am

Here is an account I dug out recently that got me thinking. In 1733 a cockatrice terrorized Renwick when the church was being demolished. The beast was slayen by John Tallantire with a rowan branch. The creature was described as resembling a bat. Apparently the cockatrice was again reported as having been seen in 1959.

The classic appearance of a cockatrice is considered to be that of a large rooster with a lizards tail and it is supposed to have the power to turn someone to stone at a glance. Maybe John just did fight a big bat with his stick.

Did he just fight a big bat and if so, it shows how a simple story could evolove over time.

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DJP

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PostSubject: Re: Renwick Cockatrice   Fri 06 Jun 2008, 1:52 am

Any referance for the 1959 sighting (were mind altering substances involved?), should we be looking for very lifelike stone statues in Renwick? Seriously though it would be interesting to find the original story, as it may have been repeated and exaggerated by many authors from a couple of lines in a penny dreadful, or it may have a more interesting source.
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Mauro

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PostSubject: Re: Renwick Cockatrice   Sat 07 Jun 2008, 9:52 am

I haven't even been able to find a proper date for the Renwick Cockatrice or more correctly crack-a-christ). Some source say 1733, others 1620. Given the vast number of basilisk cases all over Europe in the first half of the XVII century (Rome, Prague, Vienna etc) I favor the earlier date.
A very interesting part of the story is the fact that the Tallantire family was given exemption from tithes following this feat. If I remember correctly since 1530, after the Abolition of Monasteries, tithes had to be paid directly to the Crown. If the Tallantires obtained their exemption after this date there should be some trace of the feat. Unless, of course, it went conveniently lost during the Civil War... Wink
A popular line, though, gives the date as "during James I reign" (1603-1625), which will of course confirm the earlier date.
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Urisk

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PostSubject: Re: Renwick Cockatrice   Sun 03 Aug 2008, 9:59 am

Only problem iwth large bats is that the only ones that would qualify would be macrobats. Fruitbats and flying foxes. And they're all vegetarian.The largest British bat is the Noctule (Nyctalus noctula) which has a wingspan of 450mm.
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PostSubject: Re: Renwick Cockatrice   Thu 14 Aug 2008, 6:56 am

Got another Cockatrice here from Dale, Shetland.

A Cockatrice was supposedly killed here when the peat in which it was hiding were set on fire. It had, according to local tradition been found whilst still in its egg. A woman had got her hen to sit on the egg until it hatched. Unfortunately when it hatched it ate the hen's chicks then ran off

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