by Christopher Freeburn | December 6, 2012 12:50 pm
Reports that North Korean archaeologists had uncovered a unicorn lair appear, sadly, to be untrue.
An English language version of the original report was broadcast to a unicorn-starved world by the Korean Central News Agency, claiming that the secretive, totalitarian state’s scientists had “reconfirmed a lair of the unicorn” once ridden by an ancient Korean king, the Guardian noted.
Unfortunately, linguistic experts who read the Korean language copy of the story said that the wording had been mistranslated.
It seems that the North Korean archaeologists were simply studying a place called Kiringul, the mythic home of “kirins,” legendary beasts with a dragon’s head and a single horn. The scientist did not actually report finding any evidence of kirins, nor is there any hint that they expected to.
In fact, North Korea only appears to be claiming the discovery of an ancient kingdom’s capital city, Koruryo. That might have been interesting enough in itself. But evidence of unicorns would have been better.
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