The wild man (also wildman, or "wildman of the woods", archaically woodwose or wodewose) is a mythical figure that appears in the artwork and literature of medieval Europe, comparable to the satyr or faun type in classical mythology and to Silvanus, the Roman god of the woodlands.
The defining characteristic of the figure is its "wildness"; from the 12th century they were consistently depicted as being covered with hair. Images of wild men appear in the carved and painted roof bosses where intersecting ogee vaults meet in the Canterbury Cathedral, in positions where one is also likely to encounter the vegetal Green Man. The image of the wild man survived to appear as supporter for heraldic coats-of-arms, especially in Germany, well into the 16th century. Renaissance engravers in Germany and Italy were particularly fond of wild men, wild women, and wild families, with examples from Martin Schongauer (died 1491) and Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528) among others.
Famous quotes containing the words wild and/or man:
“Her mane falls wild on her forehead,
And the light breeze moves me to caress her long ear
That is delicate as the skin over a girls wrist.
Suddenly I realize
That if I stepped out of my body I would break
—James Wright (19271980)
“No other human being, no woman, no poem or music, book or painting can replace alcohol in its power to give man the illusion of real creation.”
—Marguerite Duras (b. 1914)