Towards the end of "The Decay of Lying" (1891), Vivian throws into the mixing pot the wandering off of "Dragons," the soaring of "the phoenix," "the basilisk
," "the jewel in the toad's head," "the Hippogriff," and the floating of "the Blue Bird" (Wilde, Criticism, 101).
Since the Serpentarium ceased trading, however, a new public attraction to replace it has arisen in Walsall, a large new art gallery, in its way every bit as surprising as was the largest reptile petshop in Europe: for one no more expects to find art in Walsall than king cobras or bearded basilisks
2) Emerald basilisks
are tropical lizards that can run at high speed on their hind legs.
including amphisbenas, asps, basilisks
, dragons, and hydruses.
The tower, of course, does fall, returning to its obdurate, constituent parts: "hornless unicorns, / Cracked basilisks
, and splintered cockatrices" (ll.
(Basiliscus plumifrons), found in Central America, sprint across the surfaces of streams when startled.
We have the same impression when a page from "a very old library book" (from what we are led to infer, a medieval bestiary), describing basilisks
and their habits, refers to the "crowing of the rooster" as deadly to these serpents, since presumably the "crowing of the cock" might have offended tender ears (Chamber of Secrets 215).
never mind the blast-ended skrewts, dementors, acromantulas, basilisks
, werewolves, dragons or Fluffy.
Moreover, 'composite creatures' -- even those which were not fabulous, monstrous, or bizarre (such as griffins, basilisks
and manticores) -- frequently exercised the imaginations of mediaeval authors and illustrators.
Within the wainscot, human beings share their physical space with other, non-human, intelligent beings--hobgoblins, bogeymen, basilisks
, centaurs, werewolves, ghosts which in Primary Reality can only exist as metaphors for human perceptions of their environment as benign, indifferent, capricious, or outright hostile.
It is interesting that Fawkes saves Harry as according to legend it is another bird, the rooster, which travelers would carry as protection from basilisks
So happy be the issue, brother England, Of this good day and of this gracious meeting, As we are now glad to behold the eyes, Your eyes which hitherto have borne in them Against the French that met them in their bent The fatal balls of murdering basilisks