In the long history of Naples, fantasy has always played a major role. I’m updating my book on Naples, its title is “Virgil’s Golden Egg and Other Neapolitan Miracles,” which refers to Virgil — who in Neapolitan lore was not only a great poet but a great sorcerer as well — who saved what is now called “the Egg Castle” from disaster by placing a golden egg in a crystal sphere, locked inside an iron cage. It’s clearly fantasy, and so, most people believed, was another choice story about a Queen of Naples with a huge sexual appetite, who, sated with a given lover, had him thrown over the parapets of the castle (same one, I think) into a moat to be devoured by hungry crocodiles.
Then, a couple of years ago, engineers working on a new road in the area of the castle uncovered a huge reptile skeleton…and for a few days everyone wondered if the story wasn’t true after all.
Now the Boston Herald tells us that a unicorn has been found in Italy.
ROME – A deer with a single horn in the center of its head — much like the fabled, mythical unicorn — has been spotted in a nature preserve in Italy, park officials said Wednesday. “This is fantasy becoming reality,” Gilberto Tozzi, director of the Center of Natural Sciences in Prato, told The Associated Press. “The unicorn has always been a mythological animal.”
And they’ve even got a picture…
So there’s hope for Nessie and Bigfoot, after all.