“The Black Rabbit serves Lord Frith, but he does no more than his appointed task.”

Art Garfunkel’s song Bright Eyes, from the 1979 film adaptation of Watership Down.

Author Richard Adams, who wrote the original novel, developed a fascinating matrix of “Lapine” language and a rich mythology, including tales of the Black Rabbit of InlĂ©. The Black Rabbit serves Lord Frith – essentially a deification of the sun – by claiming lives when their times have come. It is a figure of fear in the fraught day-to-day lives of rabbits, but also serves as a psychopomp and a restorer of balance to their world.

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