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Example of a monument for an accused witch – “Maggie Wall burnt here 1657 as a Witch.” Source: Alan Weir/CC BY 2.0

Monumental Reminder of Scottish Witch Persecutions

The Scottish public is being consulted on a proposed national memorial in Fife for people condemned as witches. Scottish records inform that between the 16th and 18th centuries there were at least 1,...
Tuatha Dé Dannan, the Enchanting Predecessors of Irish Fairies and Elves

Tuatha Dé Dannan, the Enchanting Predecessors of Irish Fairies and Elves

Most people do not believe in elves. The little people, along with fairies , banshees, and werewolves, are often thrown into the category of ‘fantasy’ and left to molder unless some video game or...
A man alone in a faerie realm.

Mysterious Worlds: Travels to the Faerie and Shamanic Realms

There are many accounts of a land of immortality and eternal youth in world myths and legends, as well as shamanic and indigenous spiritual traditions. Mysterious Worlds Writing in his recent work,...
Fairy trees serve as the gateway for fairies to travel between worlds.

How Credible Are the Superstitions Surrounding the Mystical Irish Fairy Trees?

A fairy tree is a type of plant found in Irish folklore. Such trees are believed to be sacred to the fairies, and some believe that they serve as gateways between this realm and that of the fairies...
A mushroom ring creating a circle on the grass. These rings were believed to be portals to the fairy realm, and areas of danger.

Do you dare enter a fairy ring? The mythical mushroom portals of the supernatural

For thousands of years, the sudden appearance of a ring of mushrooms was a sure sign of otherworldly presences. These rings would seemingly appear overnight, or travel from one location to another,...
Mythical creatures – The Tooth Fairy

Tooth Fairy Tales: The Strange Origins of the Dental Sprite

The tooth fairy is rivalled only by Santa Claus in popularity among American children. She is famous for exchanging a few dollars for baby teeth that have fallen out. Belief in the tooth fairy has...
A stereotypical depiction of a leprechaun

Fascinating Facts You Probably Did Not Know About Leprechauns

The leprechaun is perhaps one of the best-known creatures in Irish folklore. Leprechauns are popularly depicted as little men with beards dressed in green coats and tall green hats. Other well-known...
Detail of ‘Coco’ a monstrous Spanish lullaby.

Creepy Cradle: Unsettling Traditional Lullabies Sung Around the World

Sweet dreams or nightmares – are we scaring our children to sleep? Have you ever thought about the lyrics sung in lullabies? Although it’s proven that lullabies help babies get to sleep, if you pay...
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...
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,...
The magical night sky

This Haunted World: You’re a Part of It, and You Have Been for Thousands of Years

Where do we come from? A normal life consists of being born into and then living within a world made up of material building blocks such as subatomic particles, atoms, protoplasm, flesh and blood...
Elves and other fairy folk.

Divine, Demonic, or Something In-Between: How the Changing Face of Elves Reflects the Zeitgeist

Just as human culture has changed over the centuries, supernatural creatures also change with time. For example, elves were originally a type of nature spirit similar to Nymphs in Greek mythology...
Fairy realm and abstract quantum physics

Do you have the Second Sight? Finding Fairies & The Secret Commonwealth of Robert Kirk

The tale of the Rev. Robert Kirk and his Secret Commonwealth of Elves, Fauns and Faeries is very peculiar. When read carefully, the text of his 1691 manuscript describing the faeries of Aberfoyle,...
‘Meadow Elves’ (1850) by Nils Blommér.

The Diverse Nature of Elves in Norse Myth: Beings of Light or Darkness?

Santa Claus, Keebler cookies, and overloaded shelves. When one speaks of elves, the mind most often goes to those who work for Santa or Keebler, or those which hide from little children in the middle...
Enlarged entrance to Carn Euny fogou.

Caves and Portals: The Hidden World Beneath Us & Rites of Passage

To enter the famous European caves of Lascaux, Chauvet, Altamira, Pech Merle and many others is to enter another world. You are greeted by a whole menagerie of hauntingly beautiful representations of...
Galician Faith in the Enchanted Mouros and Mouras: Is There Reality Behind the Fairytales?

Galician Faith in the Enchanted Mouros and Mouras: Is There Reality Behind the Fairytales?

Numerous folk stories in Galicia, Spain, tell of supernatural spirits that dwell in forests, among the waters of the rivers, or on sandy beaches. Many of them are related in some ways to ancient...

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