Some Fairy Tales

Just a little something for fun. Both of these links have much more information.

A fairy (also faery, faerie, færie or fae; collectively wee folk, good folk, people of peace and other euphemisms)[1] is a spirit or supernatural being that is found in the legends, folklore, and mythology of many cultures.

The term “fairy” came into use in the folklore of Western Europe in the medieval era; it has been applied to supernatural beings of many different cultures, both those similar to, and distinctly different from, the Western European “fairy” (see List of beings referred to as fairies). Even in folkore that uses the term “fairy”, there are many definitions of what constitutes a fairy. Sometimes the term is used to describe any magical creature, including goblins or gnomes, and at other times only to describe a specific type of more ethereal creature.[2]

Fairies are generally described as humanoid in appearance and as having magical powers. Their origins are less clear in the folklore, being variously the dead, or some form of angels, or a species completely independent of humans or angels.[3] Folklorists have suggested that their actual origin lies in a conquered race living in hiding,[4] or in religious beliefs that lost currency with the advent of Christianity.[5] These explanations are not always mutually incompatible, and their origin may come from multiple sources.

Fairy Lore is a broad subject in Folklore. Ostensibly a relic of an animistic worldview long passed, it has been heavily influenced by peoples ideas of cause and effect in nature, in which most of us once lived. Now most of us live in cities, regimented by different forces, the need for fairies to help us explain the world in which we are living has gone. But stories still survive, though without much of their immediate meaning.

There is no shortage of such stories in Sussex, but their impetus and effect upon the local population has gone now Sussex has become a suburb of London, and all the countryside most people here see is out of their car window as they head up the A23. Nevertheless, there is the common story of a site in Sussex being the last place in England inhabited by fairies before they left. Sussex was also the focus of a romantic revival of interest in fairies, begun in Yorkshire with the Cottingley Fairies, and continued here for the benefit of the middle classes and wistful artists, who had little to do with the farm labourers who were the source of much of the original lore.


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