Worlds of David Darling
Encyclopedia of Science
Home > Encyclopedia of Science

tinner's rabbits

tinner's rabbits
A name that has emerged recently to describe a pattern of three rabbits or hares that has been found in many parts of the world, including England and Wales, mainland Europe, China, and Russia. It occurs, for example, on the medieval roof bosses of some churches in Devon and Cornwall and is thought to be connected with the local tin-mining industry. One theory suggests the following link: Tin is alloyed with copper to make bronze, copper came from Cyprus (the words Cyprus and copper have the same root), Cyprus is the island of the goddess Venus or Aphrodite (she was born there), rabbits are symbols of Venus. Three intertwined fishes are a common Christian symbol, so the three rabbits may also have stood for the Trinity.

Related category