Unicorns have fascinated society for centuries. These mythical creatures are the subject of much debate. Did they once exist and are now simply extinct, or are they imaginary? Some scholars claim the unicorn is mentioned in the Bible.
I’m sure you want to go check for yourself…but first we need to review how the Bible we read today got published. We are reading translations. I’m not in anyway implying the Bible is not the word of God, however, we are all familiar with the use of synonyms and how they can alter slightly the meaning of a sentence. Unicorns in the Bible is a GREAT example. The word unicorns in the Bible appear in the Authorized King James Version. If your religious denomination uses another translation of the Bible, it has likely been “put back” to wild ox or another animal.
Here is a comparison between the New King James version, and the New American Bible. The verse is even “off” by one for a fair comparison. I believe the overall message is the same :-), We are simply looking for the existence of unicorns in the Bible for fun!
Psalm 22:21 New King James = Save me from the lion’s mouth: for thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns. Psalm 22:22 in the New American Bible, Revised Edition (NABRE) = Save me from the lion’s mouth, my poor life from the horns of wild bulls.
Why are the 2 Bibles different? The Old Testament was written in Hebrew and later translated into other languages.
When Greek scholars began translating the original Hebrew Bible into Greek they came across a word they were unfamiliar with: re’em. It is thought this word referred to an one horned wild ox that had become extinct. Therefore, they translated the word to the closest word (a synonym let’s say): monokeros. This word means one horned.
When the Bible was later translated from Greek to Latin by St. Jerome, He came across the word monokeros and changed it to the Latin word unicornis, which also means one-horned. When the Bible was translated into English, there was no English word that meant one-horned, so the word unicorn was used, and a new word was invented. Different denominations of Christianity adopted different translations of the Bible so …for some their may be unicorns, others wild ox and even others wild bulls!
I suppose we will never know if Unicorns truly existed, but today is a day to celebrate them none the less! I spotted a Rare Uni-Bear in my house!
Celebrate by writing your own fairy tale in which a unicorn appears as one of the characters or creatures. Use our FREE writing paper!
Be sure to check out our COMPLETE Unicorn Day activity pack:
Template and instructions for creating unicorn horns
10 word unicorn word search color and B/W version
2 different Coloring pages
Unicorn themed writing paper color and B/W versions
Step by step photos for creating a LEGO unicorn
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