Reynard the Fox
The hero in the beast-epic of the fourteenth century. This prose poem is a satire on the state of Germany in the Middle Ages. Reynard typifies the church; his uncle, Isengrin the wolf, typifies the baronial element; and Nodel the lion, the regal. The word means deep counsel or wit. (Gothic, raginohart, cunning in counsel; Old Norse, hreinn and ard; German, reincke.) Reynard is commonly used as a synonym of fox.
(Heinrich von Alkmaar.)
“Where prowling Reynard trod his nightly round.”
With greater guile False Reynard fed on consecrated spoil; The graceless beast by Athanasius first Was chased from Nice, then by Socinus nursed.
Part i. 51-54.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894