Interesting myth about Pelicans, is in medieval Europe, it was believed whenever food grew scarce, the mother pelican would intentionally stab themselves on the breast with their beaks and then use the blood to feed their chicks.
It’s a noble idea, but it’s a myth which has something to do with the gular pouches of Dalmatian pelicans, which turns an orang-reddish colour during the breeding season. Maybe an onlooker saw one preening and got the wrong idea.
Regardless, the myth of bloodletting pelicans struck a cord with Christian artists, who compared the gesture to the sacrifice Jesus made on humanity’s behalf.
Thus, the motif became widespread in Europe during the late medieval and early Renaissance periods. A 1611 edition of the King James Bible featured the image of a breasted-piercing pelican. The symbol also appears in 1575 portrait of Queen Elizabeth I.
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