For the Celts, the unicorn was considered an animal of purity and innocence, but also of masculinity and power. It is not surprising that Scotland, a country associated from its origins with myths and legends, chose a legendary creature as its national animal. Unicorns and Scotland have been linked for centuries. This mythological animal represents ideals to which the Scots were attached. The stories of domination and chivalry associated with the unicorn are certainly the reason why it was chosen as Scotland’s national animal.
The unicorn was first used on the Scottish royal coat of arms in the 12th century by William I. It consisted of two unicorns tied by a gold chain wrapped around their bodies. The unicorn was considered an idyllic wild animal, a pure animal that could not be tamed, a symbol of virility, purity and grace. The chain of unicorns symbolised the power of the Scottish kings, strong enough to tame even a unicorn. Even today, the unicorn still appears on the Scottish coat of arms.