The Unicorn Crosses a Stream


Hillary Smith
published on 21 October 2020
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"The Unicorn Crosses a Stream" is one of seven tapestries in the "Unicorn Tapestries" group. These allegorical tapestries depict the hunting of a unicorn, a mythological animal common to European folklore. In "The Unicorn Crosses a Stream," the unicorn has become aware of the hunters and tries to flee as the hunters begin their attack.

The tapestries originally belonged the Le Rochefoucald family of France, and the earliest record of them confirms that they were hanging in the Paris home of François VI de La Rochefoucauld (1613 - 1680 CE) by 1680 CE. The tapestries are thought to have been woven in Brussels between 1495 – 1505 CE, although they were designed in Paris, France.

The Unicorn Tapestries are now held by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and are housed in the Met Cloisters.

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About the Author

Hillary Smith
Hillary Smith holds master's degrees in Art History (University College Dublin) and Public Policy (UCLA). Interested in the nexus of art and policy, she is a believer in the soft power potential of cultural heritage to transform and connect our world.

Cite This Work

APA Style

Smith, H. (2020, October 21). The Unicorn Crosses a Stream. World History Encyclopedia. Retrieved from

Chicago Style

Smith, Hillary. "The Unicorn Crosses a Stream." World History Encyclopedia. Last modified October 21, 2020.

MLA Style

Smith, Hillary. "The Unicorn Crosses a Stream." World History Encyclopedia. World History Encyclopedia, 21 Oct 2020. Web. 25 Jun 2024.