Just like a tower, safe and fortified,/It is, frankly, not convincing if you consider this rather bewildered quadruped.
a fort impregnable, firm to the end,/
thus, too, stand I, robust beyond compare.
But it reminded me of my small collection of images of Greek elephants, and as this week is given to celebrating a daughter's wedding, I offer a celebration of elephants instead of more of the 15th century.
This next, tiny image, is cribbed from John Chapman's dense site on Mani, from an 18th-C fresco of the redemption of all the earthly creation at the Last Judgement, in the church of Ag. Chrysostomos at Skoutari.
This elephant is in a fresco at Metora of Adam naming the animals. I bought an unlabeled postcard 32 years ago, and now have no idea which monastery is so privileged, nor of the date, though I will risk a guess for the 16th-C. The animals are fascinating as a group, each taken from a different manuscript illustration, from different cultures and periods, and Adam is gender-neutral, possibly influenced by Balkan gnosticism.
Not actually Greek, but bought by a Greek, and brought to Greece -- it now resides in the Benaki Islamic Museum in Athens -- this ink drawing is Coptic, from the 8th century. A second elephant from the Benaki Islamic is this splendidly-colored tile:
The Museum of Byzantine and Christian Art in Athens has this very scrubbed 3rd?-C elephant alongside a soft giraffe, part of a sculpture of Orpheus playing his harp for the animals.
And the loveliest of them all, this tender elephant from a procession of elephants from the late 4th-century Arch of Theodosios in Thessaloniki.