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The gulon is a medieval hybrid monster that once roamed the territories of what is now Scandinavia and Germany.

The Gulon

It was also known as Gulo, Jerff (Swedish) or Vielfras (German)

Description

The gulon is usually described as being the size and shape of a dog, with some catlike features such as the head, ears, and claws. It also supposedly has a thick coat of shaggy brown fur and a tail resembling that of a fox.

Powers

Though its flesh is never eaten, its blood was said to have aphrodisiac properties and was sometimes served, mixed with honey, at weddings.

Behavior

The Gulon is notorious as a symbol of gluttony because of the strange eating habits it is supposed to have. It will make a kill, and then gorge itself until it is swollen and unable to eat more, at which point it will find two trees and squeeze itself in between them, pushing the meat through its own body before returning to the kill and repeating the process.

Theories

It is generally agreed the Gulon was simply an early account of a wolverine, which has a reputation as a voracious glutton (often killing things much larger than itself, gorging itself to lighten the carcass, and then dragging the kill away to finish later,) and from a distance does resemble the description of the Gulon.

Quotes

"He is as great as a great dog, and his ears and face are like a cat's: his feet and nails are very sharp; his body is hairy, with long brown hair, his tail is somewhat shorter, but his hair is thicker, and of this they make brave winter caps. Wherefore this creature is the most voracious; for, when he finds a carcasse, he devours so much, that his body, by over-much meat, is stretched like a drum, and finding a streit passage between trees, he presseth between them, that he may discharge his body by violence; and this being emptied, he returns to the carcasse and fills himself top full."

Olaus Magnus

"This beast was not known by the ancients, but hath bin since discovered in the Northern parts of the world. (Germany and the Netherlands)...When it hath found a dead carcass he eateth thereof so violently that his belly standeth out like a bell; then he seeketh for some narrow passage betwixt two trees, and there draweth through his body, by pressing whereof he driveth out the meat which he had eaten; and being so emptied returneth and devoureth as much as he did before."

Topsell

Sources

  • Elemental Encyclopedia of Magical Creatures, by John and Caitlin Matthews
  • Part of this article consists of modified text from Wikipedia, and the article is therefore licensed under GFDL.