Paris, France — It’s back to Antiquity with Asterix for the 39th time with the upcoming release of Asterix and The Griffin, an adventure-filled tale recounting the encounter of the mythical creature, the Griffin, with the Ancient Gauls. Asterix, Obelix and Idefix are back along with the most celebrated of druids, Panoramix, for a long quest after a strange and terrifying creature, the griffin. The Beloved world of Asterix was created over 60 years ago by René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo, and the 39th album in the series was written by Jean-Yves Ferri and illustrated by Didier Conrad.
Ferri explains that the inspiration for the album was drawn from a sculpture of frightening animal of Celtic lore and legend, the tarasque, a dragon-like mythological hybrid creature from the Provence region of France. He settled upon the griffin to be at the center of the story line a sort of half eagle, half lion creature with sharp claws from mythology and which symbolically ruled over the realms of Air and Earth. Other fantastic creatures have peopled the world of Asterix although they didn’t play a leading role in the album including a dragon, a winged bull, a grumpy elf, a unicorn and an ancestor of the Loch Ness monster.
In Antiquity images of the griffin appeared in the Near East, Anatolia and Cyrpus, explains the specialist in Near Eastern and Egyptian relations in Antiquity Hélène Bouillon, a curator at the Louvre-Lens museum. For the Greeks, she explains, griffins were the guardians of the treasures of Apollo and Dionysus while at the same time, the first millennium before Christ, its effigy decorated the palaces of ancient Persia.
The adventures of Asterix have sold more than 385 million copies, been translated into 111 languages and been the subject of 14 films. Asterix and Griffin will be available in bookshops on October 21st.
©Trish Valicenti for The Gourmet Gazette
Categories: Gourmet Fair