Wolf Country, Myth and Stories

«story index

Wolf Country

Wolf Myths of the Middle ages

During the middle ages, wolves were ascribed magical powers and wolf parts became an important part of many early pharmacies. Powdered wolf liver was used to ease birth pains. A wolf's right paw, tied around ones throat, was believed to ease the swelling caused by throat infections.

  • It was widely believed that a horse that stepped in a wolf print would be crippled

  • The gaze of a wolf was once thought to cause blindness

  • Others believed that the breath of the wolf could cook meat.

  • Naturalists of the day believed wolves sharpened their teeth before hunting

  • Dead wolves were buried at a village entrance to keep out other wolves (a bizarre belief echoed today by farmers who continue to shoot predators and hang them on fence posts to repel other predators.)

  • Travelers were warned about perils of walking through lonely stretches of woods, and stone shelters were built to protect them from attacks. Our modern word "loophole" is derived from the European term "loup hole," or wolf hole, a spy hole in shelters through which travelers could watch for wolves.

«story index