Copcot was making his way through Shotover forest, to the east of the city, on his way to mass at Horspath church on Christmas Day 1376, amusing himself by reading Aristotle as he went, as undergraduates do, when suddenly he was confronted by a wild boar. Scholar and beast eyed each other. Then, according to an account printed in 1876, “as quick as speech the taberdar thrust the volume, vellum, brass and all, into the animal’s throat, and then finished the business with the spear, whilst his opponent was digesting his classics.” An 1823 account gives the “touching climax” to the story: “‘Swallow that, if you can’ (cried the unarmed student thrusting his Aristotle down the boar’s throat). ‘Graecum est’, cried the boar, and expired, foaming at the mouth; for he found Aristotle (as many other throats had done and will do) too hard for him.”
— Andrew Gant, Christmas Carols: From Village Green to Church Choir
We’ve seen quite a few bears on our hikes, including a mom with her cubs. This convinces me that I should start carrying some Zizek and Habermas in my pack for protection.