afternoon faun



In Roman mythology, fauns are place-spirits (genii) of untamed woodland. Romans connected their fauns with the Greek satyrs, wild and orgiastic drunken followers of Bacchus (Greek Dionysus). However, fauns and satyrs were originally quite different creatures. Both have horns and both resemble goats below the waist, humans above; but originally satyrs had human feet, fauns goatlike hooves. The Romans also had a god named Faunus and goddess Fauna, who, like the fauns, were goat-people.

The Barberini Faun (Glyptothek, Munich, Germany) is a Hellenistic marble, c. 200 BCE that was found in the Mausoleum of the Emperor Hadrian (the Castel Sant'Angelo) and installed at Palazzo Barberini by Cardinal Maffeo Barberini (later Pope Urban VIII), the patron of Bernini, who heavily restored and refinished it, so that its present 'Hellenistic baroque' aspect may be enhanced.


In William Faulkner's short story "Black Music" (1934) Draughtsman Wilfred Midgleston believes he was transformed into a "farn" en route to show a client blueprints.

In C. S. Lewis' classic, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, a faun named Mr. Tumnus is the first creature Lucy meets in Narnia. He tries to kidnap her because she is a daughter of Eve, putting Lucy under an enchantment with his flute, but is suddenly convinced of his great evil, and has a change of heart.

In Piers Anthony's fantasy novel series, The Magic of Xanth, fauns are present as well as a main character in the book Faun & Games.

In the Spyro the Dragon series of video games, a faun named Elora makes appearances in two of the games, most prominently in the realm of Avalar, her home. Several other fauns, both male and female, appear in two of the worlds of Avalar's sub-realm, Autumn Plains. The female fauns, which act in a sort of valley girl manner, are in the world of Fracture Hills, while the male fauns are in Magma Cone.

In Guillermo del Toro's 2006 film Pan's Labyrinth (El Laberinto del Fauno), a faun (Doug Jones), whose many ancient names are now known "only by the wind and trees", guides Ofelia (Ivana Baquero) through the three tasks she must perform in order to return to the kingdom in the netherworld where her former incarnation was once a princess. The faun in this movie is different from most fauns, as it was made of earth and trees rather than just a goat and a man.

In Louis Malle's My Dinner with Andre, Andre Gregory relates the story of Scottish scientist Robert Ogilvie Crombie's twentieth-century encounter with a faun (and later Pan himself). Andre presents the tale as fact. His dining partner, Wallace Shawn, initially confuses the word "faun" with "fawn," protesting, "I thought a fawn was a baby deer."

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