|[Image courtesy: Finlay Cowan]|
Unless you come from Tarascon in provincial France, are a fan of Warcraft or Dungeons and Dragons, you're probably unlikely to have heard of it.
|[image courtesy: The Paradise Post ]|
The king of the area had sent several knights to kill the beast, to no avail. Finally, St Martha ventured forth to help the people. She came across the Tarasque in a forest, eating a man. She approached the beast, sang hymns to it, prayed at it and sprinkled it with holy water. The creature then became as docile as a lamb. Using her own girdle (as you do?!) , she lead the beast back to the village.The villagers were horrified by the beast and brutally slew it - despite it no longer being a threat. St Martha reprimanded the villagers and told them they were wrong to kill the beast. Once they realised their error they were very sorry, and converted to Christianity for forgiveness, and re-named the village Tarascon in memory of the Tarasque.
|[Image courtesy: Wikipedia]|
The symbolism of virginity and purity in "calming the beast" can be found in almost every culture. It is a theme often played upon in paranormal romance itself.
It is perhaps interesting that in our era of kick-ass heroines that the virgin calming the beast is a theme that dares be repeated. Yet it is, over and over again - but it has evolved with the times. The latest development I've noticed in my readings of paranormal/fantasy romance is of the fiesty virgin. These are women who are virgins by choice, and can still be 'kick-ass' when they need to be. One of my favourite authors, Kresley Cole, frequently has feisty virgin heroines and brutishly male heroes...and I highly recommend them all!
Enjoy your weekend