A horse-like creature with a single horn protruding from its head can be found in the artwork of cultures as widespread as Japan and England, Mexico and India. In ancient times, and even in medieval times, the creature was believed to truly exist, so it didn’t figure in mythological stories. Of course, it always existed somewhere else, but that didn’t stop believers from desiring to own a unicorn horn, reputed to have medicinal powers.
The bright white horse galloped as fast as its legs could carry it, away from the only home it knew. A bright full moon filled the sky, but the horse soon entered an old forest, impenetrable by light. The horse thrashed and stumbled, but soon found itself in a clearing at the forest center. Drooping its head to rest and drink from a stream, the horse was surprised by a voice. “What have we here? A runaway?” It was a wizard, one of those elusive forest dwellers the horse had only heard stories about. “You’ve suffered greatly, I can see,” said the kindly wizard. Perhaps a bit of magic would give you a new future.” The horse suddenly felt an itch in the center of its head. It dipped its head again toward the water and was startled when the moon suddenly revealed its reflection in the placid stream. A long, swirling horn had appeared! The wizard patted the surprised horse on its back. “What shall we call you? The very first of a new breed. How about a unicorn?”