When the earliest humans and their close relatives, the Neanderthals, scratched out the images of bison, horses, aurochs and deer onto the walls and ceilings of some of the most inaccessible cave spaces to be found, how can we guess what their intentions were? These are the oldest examples of art, and arguably the point at which we achieved the thing that makes us human: the ability to think and represent something conceptually.
The Venatorian, the hunting magician, wields possibly the oldest form of magic known to humans. The span of thousands of years has rendered our ancestors and their societies remote and unfathomable, but it is a tantalising thought that cave paintings could have been an early form of magic intended to ensure a successful hunt, as Eliza asserts.
With an arsenal of terrifying weapons, the Venatorian is a formidable predator, most likely to be found hunting in Epping Forest. But his skills as a hunter are best demonstrated in his hunts for enemies of the Guild. He can ‘track a mouse from London to York on a week-old trail’, and keeps the pickled heads of monsters he has hunted in jars in his workshop. Aided by his stallion and the magic bugle which enchants any animal who hears it, magic or otherwise, the Venatorian is easily the most powerful magician in the Guild, with the exception of William Devere only.
Aurochs, horses and deer from the Lascaux caves.