Of the fox The word vulpis, fox, is, so to say, volupis. For it is fleet-footed and never runs in a straight line but twists and turns. It is a clever, crafty animal. When it is hungry and can find nothing to eat, it rolls itself in red earth so that it seems to be stained with blood, lies on the ground and holds it breath, so that it seems scarcely alive. When birds see that it is not breathing, that it is flecked with blood and that its tongue is sticking out of its mouth, they think that it is dead and descend to perch on it. Thus it seizes them and devours them. The Devil is of a similar nature. For to all who live by the flesh he represents himself as dead until he has them in his gullet and punishes them. But to spiritual men, living in the faith, he is truly dead and reduced to nothing. Those who wish to do the Devil’s work will die, as the apostle says: ‘For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die; but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.’ (Romans, 8:13) And David says: ‘They shall go into the lower parts of the earth: they shall fall by the sword: they shall be a portion for foxes.’ (Psalms, 63:9-10)
Of the yale There is an animal called the yale. It is black, as big as a horse, with the tail of an elephant, the jaws of a boar and unusually long horns, adjustable to any movement the animal might make. For they are not fixed but move as the needs of fighting require; the yale advances one of them as it fights, folding the other back, so that if the tip of the first is damaged by a blow, it is replaced by the point of the second.
Of the wolf The word lupus, wolf, in our Latin tongue derives from the Greek. For the Greeks call it licos; this comes from the Greek word for ‘bites’, because maddened by greed, wolves kill whatever they find. Others say the word lupus is, as it were, leo-pos, because like the lion, leo, their strength is in their paws, pes. As a result, whatever they seize does not survive. Wolves get their name from their rapacity: for this reason we call whores lupae, she-wolves, because they strip their lovers of their wealth. The wolf is rapacious beast and craves blood. It strength lies in its chest or its jaws, least of all in its loins. It cannot turn its neck around. It is said to live sometimes on its prey, sometimes on earth and sometimes, even, on the wind. The she-wolf bears cubs only in the month of May, when it thunders. Such is the wolf’s cunning that it does not catch food for its cubs near its lair but far away. If it has to hunt its prey at night, it goes like a tame dog here and there to a sheepfold, and lest the sheepdogs catch its scent and wake the shepherds, it goes upwind. And if a twig or anything, under the pressure of its paw, makes a noise, it nips the the paw as a punishment. The wolf’s eyes shine in the night like lamps.
Well, that’s a new one to me, calling women Lupae. I guess men who stripped others of their wealth were good christians.
It has this characteristic, that if it sees a man first, it takes away his power of speech and looks at him with scorn, as victor over the voiceless. If it senses that the man has seen it first, it loses its fierceness and its power to run. Solinus, who has a lot to say about the nature of things, says that on the tail of this animal there is a tiny patch of hair which is a love-charm; if the wolf fears that it may be captured, it tears the hair out with its teeth; the charm has no power unless the the hair is taken from the wolf while it is still alive. The Devil has the nature of a wolf; he always looks with an evil eye upon mankind and continually circles the sheepfold of the faithful of the Church, to ruin and destroy their souls. The fact that the she-wolf gives birth when the thunder first sounds in the month of May signifies the Devil, who fell from heaven at the first display of his pride. The fact that its strength lies in its forequarters and not in its hindquarters also signfies the Devil, who was formerly the angel of light in heaven, but has now been made an apostate below.
The wolf’s eyes shine in the night like lamps because the works of the Devil seem beautiful and wholesome to blind and foolish men. When the she-wolf bears her young, she will only catch food for them far away from her lair, because the Devil cherishes with wordly goods those he is sure will suffer punishment with him in the confines of hell. But he constantly pursues those who distance themselves from him by good works; as we read of the blessed Job, whose name, substance, sons and daughters the devil carried off to make him desert the Lord in his heart. The fact that the wolf cannot turn his neck without turning the whole of his body signifies that the Devil never turns towards the correction of penitence. Now what is to be done for a man when the wolf has taken away his power of shouting, when he has lost even the power of speech; he loses the help of those who are at a distance. But what is to be done? The man should take off his clothes and trample them underfoot, and taking two stones in his hands, he should beat one against the other. What happens then? The wolf, losing the boldness that comes with its courage will run away. The man, saved by his cleverness, will be free, as he was in the beginning. This is to be understood in spiritual terms and can be taken to a higher level as an allegory. For what do we mean by the wolf if not the Devil? What by the man, if not sin? What by the stones, if not the apostles, or other saints of our Lord? For they are all called by the prophet ‘stones of adamant’.(see Ezekiel, 3:9) For our Lord himself is called in the law ‘as tumbling stone and rock of offence’; (see Romans, 9:33, 1 Peter,2:8) and the prophet says of him: ‘I saw a man standing on a mountain of adamant.’ [SOURCE] Before we were finally redeemed, we were under the power of the enemy and had lost the capacity to call for help, and much as our sins required it, we were not heard by God, nor could we call any of the saints to our aid. But after God in his mercy bestowed his grace upon us in his son, in the act of baptism we laid aside, like old clothes, the person we were before, withall his deeds, and put on, like new clothes, a new person made in the image of God. Then we took stones in our hands and beat them one against the other, because we attract with our prayers the attention of the saints of God, who now reign with him in heaven, asking them to gain the ear of God, our judge, and procure a pardon for our sin, lest Cerberus, whom we do not know should swallow us up, rejoicing in our death.
Wolves mate on no more than twelve days in the year. They can go hungry for a long time, and after long fasts, eat a large amount. Ethiopia produces wolves with manes, so diversely coloured, men say, that no hue is lacking. A characteristic of Ethiopian wolves never turns towards the correction of penitence. is that they leap so high that they seem to have wings, going further than they would by running. They never attack men, however. In winter, they grow long hair; in summer, they are hairless. The Ethiopians call them theas.
This is an Ethiopian Wolf (Theas is correct).