Information about mythical creatures

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Commonly used in Middle Ages

Indian (India) poetry refers to them as celestial singers

Early civilizations told of spirits resembling Fae

Might be common because so many cultures tell stories

Different cultures, different accounts

Fae stories began when writing began

Ireland rich with Fae lore

Tuatha De Danaan, or "people of the goddess Dana" (Irish)

To the Irish, Fae were Tuatha gods and goddesses (common in Fae mythology)

Local gods and spirits could have shrunken to Fae (over time)

Some cultures believe Fae are souls of dead people

Others believe were angels that were sent from heaven to earth to do no harm if left alone

Believed they were always around and always will be

Often called "the little people" or "the fair folk"

Come in many shapes and sizes

Male and female can be strikingly beautiful

Some good, some bad

Live just beyond detection of mortals

Love to dance at night

Fae rings - usually ring of mushrooms or where the grass greener than surrounding grass

Time in Fae circles and mortal world is different

Two main Fae groups - trooping and solitary


Generally avoid human contact

If come in contact with mortals, most are friendly

May try to help by doing simple chores, but often end poorly

Easily offended

May make life miserable if insult them

Not good idea to talk badly of them, worse, say you don't believe

Hurt people in many different ways - fogs and storms on unsuspecting travelers, lead weary travelers down wrong paths, pull chairs from under people when sit down, or steal babies and leave deformed challengings (baby Fae) in place

Difficult to spot because of magic

Wear green to blend into woods easily

Rarely can see them

Stone with natural hole can reduce magical cloaking ability, like a magic telescope for finding Fae

Ways to get rid of Fae: crosses, ringing bells, iron horseshoes, picking a four leaf clover (protect from spells)

(German) elves - spirit creature

Can change form

Can disappear in a puff of smoke

Enjoy dancing and singing

Green clothing

Hatmful if offended

Most are happy


No wings

Pointed ears

Two types - light and dark

Light elves

Bewitchingly beautiful

Can do favors for mortals by doing chores in middle of night

Good and kind

Known to give good luck

Live in Alfheim

Those who help light elves sometimes rewarded with pocketful of gold

Dark elves

Blamed for: Candles mysteriously going out

Cows providing poor milk

Disease in livestock and/or mortals

Gusts of smoke billowing down chimneys again

Making farm animals ill

Sitting on sleeping mortals and giving them alpdrunkens, or nightmares

Farmers often complain dark elves ride horses all night and exhaust them

Live in Svartalfheim

Often use magic for evil




Leprechauns - tiny men who make shoes

Many ways to spell leprechaun - example: luchorpan, or "little body"

Usually described:

Green clothes

Guard hoards of gold

If captor(s) look away, even for second, they laugh and vanish


Little old men

Long, gray beards

Long noses

Often heard in woods, doing chores

Pointy hats

Pointy shoes

Reveal location of gold if captured

England and Scotland

Brownies - household spirit

Can undo work and make a mess if criticized

Considered good luck if brownie(s) live in house


Mortals, for gratitude, give cream or homemade bread

Perform tedious chores for mortals, like sweeping

Some naked and shaggy, others ragged, brown clothing

Some no nose, others two nostrils on face

South England


Expect cream, bread and/or cake

Help with household chores

Like to lead weary travelers down wrong paths 'til exhausted (pixie-led)


Mortal-like communities

Mortals accidentally stumble upon communities

Mortals like to join pixie dances

Mortals may not leave months or years after

Mortals soon loose sense of time

Pointy ears

Prefer to live in flower gardens

Red hair

Similar to brownies

Sometimes live underground

Trooping fae

Turned-up noses

Very small (look like butterflies)




Act like brownies

Colorful clothing

Don't expect much in return, except portion of family dinner

Faces of little old men

Happy to do chores for certain families

Look like garden gnomes

Not treated with respect, mischievous toward mortal host(s)

Tall, pointy cap

Usually live in barns or hearths




Looking at once can cause death

Preys on unknowing travelers

Water spirit



Appear as little old women walking on water


Live in little stone houses on an island

Water spirits

Elves & Fae

Known for over two thousand years

Medieval Europe:

fairy human woman with magic powers

Wings no appearance until late 1700s

Trooping Fae (Patu - Paierehe of the Maori of New Zealand):

Appear in mists

Live in trees

Love music and dancing

Sometimes teach mortals magic, but not usually

Solitary Fae:


Always trick to look away and vanish, leaving them lost, bewildered, and no treasure

Mortals try to persuade them to lead them to their secret stash of gold

Pixie-led: to be lost

Very rich

Traps and Tricks

Folklore elves:

Beautiful and generous

Treated with nervous respect

Intrigued by mortals

Quick, small,and supernatural

Can always outwit mortals

Will steal cows, bread, milk, and babies, and leave challengings in place

Household Helpers

Some live with mortals

Holland: redcaps

Scandinavia: nis

Germany: kobolds

Great Britain: brownies, hobgoblins, piskies

Russia: domovoys

Brownies & Hobgoblins


Raggedly dressed

Help with domestic chores

Creatures By Area

Arctic Circle: uldra

Greenland: margyr

Africa: camelopard, werecrocodiles

Egypt: Great Sphinx, Hermes Trismegistus, mummies

South Africa: Flying Dutchman, Tokoloshi

North America: bogeyman, Bokwus, ogopogo, N'haitaka, sasquatch, bigfoot, slimyslim, thunderbird, windigo

Central America: Quetzalcoatl

South America: werejaguars, Ahuitzotle

Asia: Arabian phoenix, genies/djinn, gh?ls, griffins, Nagas, Nagini, roc, yeti, abominable snowman

China: Chinese dragons, Feng-Heang, Ki Lin, Ch'i Lin, Yellow Dragon, weresnake

India: garudabird, manticore, Syma the Black, sabala, the Spotted, weretigers

Japan: Ho-o, Japanese Dragons, kirin, vampire cat of Nabeshima

Korea: Korean dragons, dokkaebi

Europe: basilisk, blue caps, bogeymen, cockatrice, doppleg?ngers, ghouls, golems, Green Man, Hippogriff, Western dragons, Western Unicorns, wyvern, Morgan le Fay, rusalka

Northern Europe: barbegazi, thumpers, knockers, uldra

Eastern Europe: vodyanoi

Great Britain: Barguest, boggarts, brownies, corpse-light, foxfire, Gwydion, Herne the Hunter, hobgoblins, ignis fatuus, Jack O'Lantern, John Dee, kelpie, Merlin, Nessie, the Loch Ness monster, piskies, pixies, Robin Goodfellow, Puck, screaming skulls, seal women, selkies, trows, Will O'The Wisp

If You See A Fae Ring


If you see a Fae ring

In a field of grass,

Very lightly step around,

Tip toe as you pass,

Last night fairies frolicked there

And they're sleeping somewhere near.

If you see a fairy

Lying fast asleep,

Shut your eyes

And run away,

Do not stay to peek!

Do not tell

Or you will break a fairy spell.

Why Fae Hide from Mortals (Irish Explanation)

The Tuatha D? Danann were descended from Nemed, leader of a previous wave of inhabitants of Ireland. They came from four cities to the north of Ireland?Falias, Gorias, Murias and Finias?where they acquired their occult skills and attributes. According to Lebor Gab?la ?renn, they came to Ireland "in dark clouds" and "landed on the mountains of [the] Conmaicne Rein in Connachta; and they brought a darkness over the sun for three days and three nights". According to a later version of the story, they arrived in ships on the coast of the Conmaicne Mara's territory (modern Connemara). They immediately burnt the ships "so that they should not think of retreating to them; and the smoke and the mist that came from the vessels filled the neighboring land and air. Therefore it was conceived that they had arrived in clouds of mist". A poem in the Lebor Gab?la ?renn says of their arrival: "It is God who suffered them, though He restrained them they landed with horror, with lofty deed, in their cloud of mighty combat of spectres. Upon a mountain of Conmaicne of Connacht. Without distinction to descerning Ireland, Without ships, a ruthless course the truth was not known beneath the sky of stars, whether they were of heaven or of earth." Led by their king, Nuada, they fought the First Battle of Magh Tuireadh on the west coast, in which they defeated and displaced the native Fir Bolg, who then inhabited Ireland. In the battle, Nuada lost an arm to their champion, Sreng. Since Nuada was no longer "unblemished", he could not continue as king and was replaced by the half-Fomorian Bres, who turned out to be a tyrant. The physician Dian Cecht replaced Nuada's arm with a working silver one and he was reinstated as king. However, Dian Cecht's son Miach was dissatisfied with the replacement so he recited the spell, "ault fri halt d? & f?ith fri f?th" (joint to joint of it and sinew to sinew), which caused flesh to grow over the silver prosthesis over the course of nine days and nights. However, in a fit of jealous rage Dian Cecht slew his own son. Because of Nuada's restoration as leader, Bres complained to his family and his father, Elatha, who sent him to seek assistance from Balor, king of the Fomorians. The Tuatha D? Danann then fought the Second Battle of Magh Tuireadh against the Fomorians. Nuada was killed by the Fomorian king Balor's poisonous eye, but Balor was killed himself by Lugh, the champion of the Tuatha D?, who then took over as king. A third battle was fought against a subsequent wave of invaders, the Milesians, from the northwest of the Iberian Peninsula (present day Galicia and Northern Portugal), descendants of M?l Esp?ine (who are thought to represent the Goidelic Celts). The Milesians encountered three goddesses of the Tuatha D? Danann, ?riu, Banba and Fodla, who asked that the island be named after them; ?riu is the origin of the modern name ?ire, and Banba and Fodla are still sometimes used as poetic names for Ireland. Their three husbands, Mac Cuill, Mac Cecht and Mac Gr?ine, who were kings of the Tuatha D? Danann at that time, asked for a truce of three days, during which the Milesians would lie at anchor nine waves' distance from the shore. The Milesians complied, but the Tuatha D? Danann created a magical storm in an attempt to drive them away. The Milesian poet Amergin calmed the sea with his verse, then his people landed and defeated the Tuatha D? Danann at Tailtiu. When Amergin was called upon to divide the land between the Tuatha D? Danann and his own people, he cleverly allotted the portion above ground to the Milesians and the portion underground to the Tuatha D? Danann. The Tuatha D? Danann were led underground into the Sidhe mounds by Manann?n mac Lir.

Want to learn more about Fae? Here are some websites:

Added to on Jun 02, 2013
Last edited on Jul 29, 2014
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