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An illustration of Vasilisa the Beautiful, by Ivan Bilibin.

A Freaky Fairy Tale of Ancient Folklore: Vasilisa the Beautiful and Baba Yaga

“[…] In the evening the girl laid the table and began waiting for Baba-Yaga. It grew dark. The black horseman swept by and it was night. The skulls’ eyes began to shine. The trees creaked, the dead...
“Little Red Riding Hood and the wolf in the forest” (1881) by Carl Larsson.

Humans Traveled Far and Wide Before Little Red Riding Hood Ever Made It Through the Woods

“Little Red Riding Hood” is a fairytale most children have heard. But if you’re not familiar, it tells the story of a young girl who wears a red velvet hood and cape and travels alone through a...
Cherry of Zennor broke with ‘reality’ and reached something deeper

What did Cherry of Zennor See That Altered Her Reality and Shaped Ours? The Deeper Meanings of Faerie Folklore

'Myth is a story that implies a certain way of interpreting consensus reality so to derive meaning and effective charge from its images and interactions. As such, it can take many forms: fables,...
Imam Ali Mosque - Shrine of: 1st Shia Imam - Ali ibn abi Talib; Prophet Adam; and Prophet Nuh (Noah).

Is this the Final Resting Place of Noah? It is Certainly One of the Contenders

The tale about a huge ship (of Biblical proportions) that enabled the survival of all of the species of animals around the world sounds impressive, but also quite unbelievable. Nonetheless, its...
No escape…Detail of a miniature of ‘Death Chopping Down a Tree’ - British Library, Royal 15 D V f. 36. Jehan Froissart. Chroniques. Netherlands, last quarter of the 15th century.

Medieval Villagers Were Ready to Mutilate Potential Zombies

For the first time, researchers have found evidence in a belief in the walking dead in medieval England, where they analyzed bones and skeletons that were decapitated, burned, and otherwise mutilated...
Painting of a mermaid by Elisabeth Jerichau Baumann, 1873.

The Secret Life of Melusine: Mysterious Mermaid & Serpent Mother of European Nobility

Melusine is the spirit of fresh water, usually depicted as a woman who is a serpent or fish from the waist down, much like the mythical mermaid. She is also frequently illustrated with two tails. The...
Not Just an Urban Legend: The Terrifying Ghostly Tales of the Lady in White

Not Just an Urban Legend: The Terrifying Ghostly Tales of the Lady in White

There is a famous “ghost” of a long-haired woman in a white dress in Quezon City, Philippines. According to legends, she died in a car accident while driving along Balete Drive. Her stories usually...
The Tale of Ivan Tsarevich, the Firebird, and the Grey Wolf

The Tale of Ivan Tsarevich, the Firebird, and the Grey Wolf

Ivan Tsarevich is a placeholder of sorts for the male protagonist of many famous Russian folk, myths and legends (Ivan is one of the most common names in Russia). Sometimes Ivan is the son of a...
The Origins of the Faeries: Changes in Conscious Perception – Part II

The Origins of the Faeries: Changes in Conscious Perception – Part II

The faeries appear in folklore from all over the world as metaphysical beings, who, given the right conditions, are able to interact with the physical world. They’re known by many names but there is...
The Origins of the Faeries: Encoded in our Cultures

The Origins of the Faeries: Encoded in our Cultures – Part I

The faeries appear in folklore from all over the world as metaphysical beings, who, given the right conditions, are able to interact with the physical world. They’re known by many names but there is...
A modern religious painting shows the Founding-King in similar motifs.

The Legendary Founder of Korea, Dangun Wanggeom

According to Korean tradition, Dangun Wanggeom (known also as Dangun or Tangun) was the legendary founder of Gojoseon (or ‘Old Joseon’), the first recorded state in Korean history. This state...
An illustration by Gennady Pavlishin from the book Folktales of the Amur: Stories from the Russian Far East showing a little baby, Azmun, found on an island in the river, who grows up to become a hero. This type of foundling-hero story has been told worldwide.

A Brothers Grimm Story Proven Right: Many Fairy Tales Stem from Ancient Oral Traditions

Many writers have speculated on the origin, antiquity and meaning of fairy tales. These fantastical stories often involve magic; strange, archaic situations; speaking animals; kings, masters and...
An illustration from page 17 of Mjallhvít (Snow White) from an 1852 icelandic translation of the Grimm-version fairytale.

Exploring the True Origins of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is one of the most famous fairy tales in the world, first related in 1812 when the Grimm brothers published their collection of tales that had been gathered from old...
Romeo and Juliet by Ford Madox Brown, 1870

Romeo and Juliet: Not a Shakespearean Tale After All

William Shakespeare's world renowned Romeo and Juliet (written sometime between 1591 and 1595) stands in the historical record as one of the greatest love stories ever written. It is most interesting...
Baba Yaga

Baba Yaga, The Confounding Crone of Slavic Folklore

Baba Yaga is considered one of the most intriguing characters from Slavic mythology. As ambiguous as she is hideous, Baba Yaga has been described by scholars as an anomaly, both a maternal, mother-...
Ingólfr Arnarson, the first settler of Iceland, newly arrived in Reykjavík.

The Haensa - Thorir Saga: A tale of law in Medieval Iceland

One of the more political Icelandic sagas, the tale of Hænsna-Þórir remains an interesting view into the legal proceedings of Iceland in the ninth century. The legal conflict woven throughout the...

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