Questions tagged [fairies]

For questions on a type of mythical creatures found in European folklore. They are generally human in appearance and capable of magic, but exact definitions and forms vary from tradition to tradition. Their names are alternative spelt fay, fae, faerie or fairy.

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When did many kinds of Fairies become small statured or tiny?

In popular culture and folklore, many species of Fairies are said to have a small true form (but can alter their size whenever they see fit) I was wondering when did this occur? Did the original myths ...
Orionixe's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
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Is there any folklore reference to fairies being divided into Summer and Winter Courts?

Modern fiction about fairies often describes them as being divided into Seelie and Unseelie Courts or Summer and Winter Courts, sometimes Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter Courts. A lot of people seem ...
A. B.'s user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
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The structure of the Fae courts

I'm looking for the structure of the Fairy (Fae) courts which are defined by Seelie or Unseelie alignments. There is a lot of fiction written but the problem is that they twist it to their own ...
EvilJinious1's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
801 views

What is the earliest example of the tiny, insect-winged fairy archetype?

I was surprised to find that this particular question is difficult to Google. Everyone is familiar with Tinker Bell and Disney's interpretation of her, but was she the first to have these ...
smallobsession's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
3k views

Is this a real myth? Pembroke Welsh Corgis as mounts for fairies

I've seen this myth floating around the internet for a while now and decided to write about it for a project. The only issue was: I couldn't actually find a reputable source for the claim. Wikipedia's ...
smallobsession's user avatar
8 votes
0 answers
363 views

Is there any folklore in non-European culture that may be an attempt to "explain" similar to changeling myths in Western Europe and Scandinavia?

It has been suggested by some authors that stories of changelings in Scandinavia and western Europe are an attempt by ancient peoples used to try and explain developmental abnormalities in children, ...
user2352714's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
2k views

Where did the idea come from that fairies must tell the truth?

I keep coming across the idea in blog posts and books that fairies are required to tell the truth, or speak very literally, and may use tricky language to get around it. This is a major theme in Holly ...
Sarah's user avatar
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9 votes
3 answers
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Whence comes the association of Leprechauns with rainbows?

In the modern day, leprechauns are usually associated with a highly rigid depiction: wearing green, hat, buckled shoes, red beard, pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Some parts of this may come ...
Obie 2.0's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
2k views

Why are mermaids naked?

In images from Roman to contemporary Britain, mermaids are usually not wearing any clothes. Other types of fairies, spirits, and gods are usually depicted at least partly dressed. Why then are ...
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11 votes
2 answers
241 views

How Do The Fairies In Irish Mythology Spend Their Time

I have heard that they are "merrymaking and lovemaking" the entire time. But if there is someone more familiar with the lives of fairies, I would love to learn about their culture...at least some ...
Lady F's user avatar
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7 votes
2 answers
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Anglo-Saxon and Faeries

I am trying to figure out whether the Anglo-Saxons had much of a belief in faeries or had an equivalent like elves or wights. I'm finding it pretty hard to disentangle what is actually English ...
rougon's user avatar
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6 votes
1 answer
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Are there any close analogues to the Fairy King & Queen Titania and Oberon, in Indian/Hindu mythology?

I am looking to create a version of Titania & Oberon, the Queen & King of the Fairies in Midsummer Night's Dream, that would have context in India. Probably deities or mythological beings ...
Maxine's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
861 views

Who was the Erlking?

I know he was the king of the fairies but what was his purpose and how did he rule? I looked him up on google, but none of my searches made any sense.
Aspen the Artist and Author's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
69 views

What are some good sources for understanding about the Kleevauks?

Has anyone else heard of the Kleevauks? I've heard a myth about a separate fay being created by the Elementals. Supposedly to help keep nature and magic balanced. I heard that these Kleevauks were ...
justme's user avatar
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Who and what are the winged "faries" that feature in fairytale?

Winged "fairies" often feature in fairytale, and a good example would be the Fairy Godmother from Cinderella. However, as, this link points out, the term "fairies " does not necessarily refer to the ...
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3 votes
2 answers
223 views

What's a good source on Fairies online?

I would like to research Fairies and their wonderful virtues, as described in Celtic mythology. Can someone suggest rich and readily available sources on the subject?
Lady F's user avatar
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8 votes
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Are certain types of fairies associated with specific regions?

I am trying to decide on a location as the setting for a fairy-lore related MG fantasy novel. As I understand it, different places have differing oral traditions, so in turn many of the fairy tales we ...
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12 votes
4 answers
28k views

What do faeries do with kidnapped human children?

Fairies -- sidhe, elves (not the Tolkien type), fairy folk etc -- have the bad habit of replacing human babies with their own for whatever reason, creating changelings ("children that have been ...
Yasskier's user avatar
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14 votes
2 answers
5k views

Are there any relations between Norse elves and Celtic fairies, or their home realms?

A lot of, if not most, modern fantasy tends to have 'Elven' races that seem to be largely inspired by the Norse Elves, likely by way of Tolkien. There also seems to be a large amount of Celtic ...
Salvador's user avatar
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18 votes
3 answers
884 views

Did the word "fairies" originate after the creation of stories about fairies?

From Wiktionary: Fairy : Etymology From Middle English fairie, from Old French faerie, the -erie abstract of fae, from Vulgar Latin Fāta (“goddess of fate”), from Latin fātum (“fate”) This seems ...
Malady's user avatar
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23 votes
2 answers
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Do Welsh fairies marry human women?

The Welsh Tylwyth Teg, or fairies, is said to take human mates. This website mentions how: There are many tales of intermarriage between faeries and humans, and advice on how to make sure you ...
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14 votes
2 answers
10k views

Why would turning clothes inside-out keep the Faerie away?

A recurring theme in Irish stories about the Faerie is that they can be kept away by clothing turned inside-out. This (according to this particular Wikipedia source about Spriggans) is "as effective ...
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