Difference between revisions of "Greyhound"

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(Guinefort and the Cult of the Greyhound)
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== Guinefort and the Cult of the Greyhound ==
 
== Guinefort and the Cult of the Greyhound ==
  
Back in the eleventh century, there was a duke in [[France]] who left his faithful Greyhound Guinefort to watch over his young child.  When the duke returned, he found the nursery covered in blood, the cradle tuned over, and the baby missing, but Guinefort remained. The duke assumed that Guinefort had killed the missing baby, so he drew his sword and killed the dog.
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was a 13th-century dog that received local veneration as a saint after miracles were reported at his grave. The cult has it that the greyhound lived in a castle near Lyons, [[France]], and protected the infant son of the lord from a snake. Having killed the snake that was making for the child the nurse entered, and let out a scream on seeing the blood around the cradle. The child was nowhere to be found, since it was hiding under the cradle.  A knight followed and slayed the greyhound, believing him to be the killer. On realising the mistake the family dropped the dog down a well, covered it with stones and planted trees around it, setting up a shrine for Guinefort. Guinefort became recognised by locals as a [[saint]] for the protection of infants. It was alleged by [[Catholic]] commentators, dismayed by the worship of a dog, that the locals sacrificed babies at the site.
  
Just as Guinefort made his last dying cry, the duke heard a wail and found the baby safe beneath the cradle and the body of a poisonous serpent nearby. Guinefort had attacked the snake and protected the infant from harm.  When the duke realized his error, he buried his faithful dog in a [[well]].
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The feast of St. Guinefort is celebrated on August 22.
  
Guinefort was made a national martyr in France and a [[saint]]. The well in which St. Guinefort is buried is thought to hold healing powers for sick infants.  The [[feast]] day of St. Guinefort is celebrated on August 22.
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This article is adapted from the [http://http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Guinefort| Wikipedia article on St. Guinefort].
 
 
Over several centuries, the legend of Guinefort gave rise to a cult.  The Catholic Church was not amused and viewed the cult as a sacrelige.  Sporadic inquisitions were heald for hundreds of years to eradicate the "cult of the Greyhound."
 
 
 
From 'Retired Racing Greyhounds for Dummies', Lee Livingood, (C) 2000 Hungry Minds, Inc.
 

Revision as of 12:10, 4 October 2005

Greyhounds (or greyhound-like dogs) are one of the oldest known breeds of dogs, with preserved hounds being found in Egyptian tombs. According to 'Retired Racing Greyhounds for Dummies', Greyhounds evolved as long as 8,000 years ago. Their body is bred for long, lean limbs, flexible spine, and an aerodynamic profile.

In period, Greyhounds were used as sighthounds for hunting rabbits and other small game, and also for sport as coursers. For centuries, only royalty were allowed to own Greyhounds.

Guinefort and the Cult of the Greyhound

was a 13th-century dog that received local veneration as a saint after miracles were reported at his grave. The cult has it that the greyhound lived in a castle near Lyons, France, and protected the infant son of the lord from a snake. Having killed the snake that was making for the child the nurse entered, and let out a scream on seeing the blood around the cradle. The child was nowhere to be found, since it was hiding under the cradle. A knight followed and slayed the greyhound, believing him to be the killer. On realising the mistake the family dropped the dog down a well, covered it with stones and planted trees around it, setting up a shrine for Guinefort. Guinefort became recognised by locals as a saint for the protection of infants. It was alleged by Catholic commentators, dismayed by the worship of a dog, that the locals sacrificed babies at the site.

The feast of St. Guinefort is celebrated on August 22.

This article is adapted from the Wikipedia article on St. Guinefort.