Putting a pig on trial appears to defy logic, but in medieval France it gave rural folk the illusion of order in a frightening world.
It took an Irish Gothic novelist to tie up centuries of demonic mythology surrounding this leathery, nocturnal mammal.
Plant, animal or other? The struggle to categorise jellyfish mirrors the desire to impose a hierarchy on the natural world.
For centuries, one grossly distorted woodcut defined the ideal of a rare beast.
No canine character has played a more crucial role in literature than Bendicò in Lampedusa’s The Leopard.
Worms are among the simplest of creatures. But, as Darwin discovered, even they share things in common with humanity.
It was once believed that swallows spent their winters on the Moon, or asleep on river beds.
Ernest Hemingway’s love of bullfighting bordered on obsession. Did he see his own insecurities reflected in the ring?
The slippery subject of eel reproduction evaded human understanding for millennia.
From wall paintings in Egyptian tombs to the margins of illuminated manuscripts, we have always used portrayals of monkeys to express our more animal side.