Bisclavret the Good Werewolf
In the late 12th century, a French poet named Marie de France (Mary of France) wrote a famous werewolf story named “Bisclavret” (which is the Breton word for werewolf). The story is very interesting in that it takes a different stance from what other werewolf stories did at the time…instead of depicting the werewolf as a vile, evil creature, Bisclavret actually tells the story of a noble, good werewolf that is the hero of the story.
As the story goes, Bisclavret was a werewolf, and in order to transform back to human form, in this story, the werewolf needs his clothing. He therefore hid his clothing everytime he transformed. Eventually, after some probing from Bisclavret told his wife where his clothes were. In glee at finally finding out his secret, the wife steals them, thereby preventing him from becoming human again and keeping him in wolf form. With her new non-husband freedom, the wife marries a knight.
One day, the king is out hunting, and the wolf comes up to the king and kisses his leg. The king, surprised at a wolf that acts so gently, treats him kindly, and has him in court. The wolf eventually comes across the knight his wife has married, and attacks him. Later, the wolf finds and attacks the wife as well, tearing off her nose. The king, suspecting that the wolf had reason to attack them (because the wolf had never done this before and was considered a gentle wolf), questions the wife and through her confession, finds out that the wolf is actually Bisclavret. Bisclavret gets his clothing back and is able to become human again. The mark that the wolf gave the wife – taking away her nose – is passed down through all her female children who are born without noses, marking her actions forever.