I noticed this image on the porch of San Zeno in Verona, a splendid Romanesque church. Rabbits have a curious set of associations in our culture, don’t they?
- Cute and cuddly
- Pesky and destructive
- Fertile, too fertile
Not sure what the Christian symbolism behind a rabbit being preyed upon is – I noted it on another facade in Venice, I believe. One source implied that it alludes to the struggle of the human soul to elude Satan, but it is also true that rabbits sometimes represent souls in thrall to Satan. There’s one in the lower portion of this detail from Bosch’s vision of Hell.