The Middle Ages for Kids - Medieval Mythical Beasts Illustration

Middle Ages for Kids
Mythical Beasts

Did you ever wonder when the lion became the king of all the beasts? Why not a rhinoceros or a hippopotamus? The lion was crowned king during the Middle Ages by craftsmen and artists who created all kinds of art for the church!  They used many animals in their art. There were dragons and gargoyles and unicorns. But there were also hedgehogs! Some of the creatures were imaginary and some were familiar like cows. Not all the beasts were scary.

Various beasts were also used as part of a design in heraldry. In medieval times, creatures that were once thought to exist were used on shields to denote traits the owner wanted to depict such as honor and bravery.

In the Middle Ages, people actually believed in gargoyles and unicorns and dragons. The stories about these creatures and other beasts were a wonderful form of entertainment (remember no TV, phones, internet, or radio.)

What is a gargoyle?

Night of the Gargoyles (Reading Library, video for kids)

Mystic Creatures - Unicorns

Beastly Tales from the Middle Ages (British Library)

Heraldry