Fairies and Little People

General:

The existence of fairies in some cultures is not questioned. For some who believe in fairies, they say that fairies are part of nature and that we have lost a certain sense of sensory perception over the ages which leaves modern man (mostly) incapable of seeing, hearing and feeling the presence of fairies in our world. A few people who are still capable of sensing fairies will say that these entities are around all the time but we just don't 'tune in' to old sensory functions or believe our senses even if we DO think we have seen something like a fairy in our midst.

Some say that fairies are real but are spiritual entities much like angels so that only certain people are aware of the existence of fairies.

Others say that fairies exist...in stories - and in the minds of believers, which isn't a bad thing if the existence of fairies gives the believer some sort of sense of adventure and hope that there is more to this world than meets the eye.

Many people believe that there is a whole realm of 'little people,' of which 'fairies' are only a small portion of 'peoples,' that make up a whole range of 'little people' personas in legend, folklore, mythology, folk and fairy tales.

Some other little people include:

Numerous classifications of 'fairy'

  • Dwarves
  • Bogeymen
  • Leprechauns
  • Gnomes
  • Gremlins
  • Sprites
  • Wood-Wives/Wood-wife
  • Trolls
  • Pixies
  • Goblins
  • Banshees
  • Kelpies

There are several sorts of Little People, but the above are some of the most common that most people have heard of before, either in tales, legends or through film, tv and books.

Conquered Races

There are many folklorists and anthropologist who suggest that fairies were originally people of small stature who lived long ago and whose race was oppressed and conquered, leaving few members of the race to survive. In some cases, perhaps none of the race survived, but it is possible that through oral tales, the memory of these peoples has been perpetuated over generations and centuries.

Evidence of small-statured peoples of what seem to be more than one race have been uncovered in areas of Europe by legitimate anthropologists. Some of these findings date back to before certain areas of Europe were populated by Celts. This would mean that the races in question lived and are dated approximately back to the Bronze Age and Neolithic periods.

* Note, some of the 'history' of fairies is like 'pseudo-history' because, in an attempt to get to historical roots concerning fairies, stories, folklore, legends and mythology play a necessary part of research into the existence of fairies. In short - it's a blurry area of study complicated by the fact that a myriad of fairy races are alive and well in several generations of oral traditions in a great number of cultures...

...you can see where the point above is going, can't you?

It's COMPLEX and INVOLVED...the study of fairies.

A race of people small in stature is said to have existed in Ireland and are called Tuatha De Danaan. They are said to have lived in shelters made of mounds of earth, and to have burrowed into the sides and undersides of hills in order to make shelters. When other people, larger people, arrived where the Tuatha de Danaan people were, they retreated into the forests...

Of course, a whole bunch of mythology and lore surrounds this particular people, so it is hard to know, for sure, whether or not the Tuatha De Danaan were a real race of people or not.

Are Fairies Fallen Angels?

Fairies may be Fallen Angels, according to Scandinavian lore, and also according to folklore in Scottish and Irish regions of the world.

According to Biblical Scriptures, a portion of the angels were cast out of heaven long, long ago. For those who believe in fairies, the fallen angels mentioned in the Bible are what we know now as fairies.

Some fallen angels who fell very far became devils, demons and death-maidens, having fallen into the deep caves and recesses of the earth.

Goblins, imps, thumblings, gnomes, dwarfs and similar fairy-folk were said to be the cast-out angels who fell to the general surface of the earth.

Some angels fell into the forests when they were cast out of heaven by God. These became wood-sprites, wood-spirites, hey-men, wild-women and wild-men, etc.

Many cast out angels fell into the water and became mermen, mermaids, etc.

For those who believe that fairies are fallen angels, these entities inhabit all realms of nature in some form or another. There are earth (dwarves, gnomes, etc) fairies, air fairies (general fairies, fairy-spirits, woodland fairies in the forests, etc), water fairies (mermen, mermaids, etc), and fire fairies (some demons, fire-spirites, etc), and many of the fairies are not nice/good entities, because they are condemned to stay in their new realm and are eternally angry at being cast out of heaven.

Dead Pagans

In some ancient Christian traditions, the belief that the unbaptized went to neither heaven nor hell accounts for some thoughts that deceased pagans who wander about, having no resting place, are the reason for fairy-sightings and the existence of fairies.

One Man's Explanation About How He Came To Believe in Fairies

Seelie and Unseelie Courts

Some folklorists and 'faery-fans' group the multitude of types of fairies into two groups - the Seelie and the Unseelie types of fairies.

The Seelie types are generally considered less harmful to humans and can even be kind and helpful toward human beings.

The Unseelie types are considered detrimental toward, unkind and harmful toward human beings.

Fairies of either type are still perceived to be mischievous, so even Seelie types can harm humans - although usually the harm is unintentional and is caused by whatever mischief the Seelie types are engaged in.

Seelie types:

  • Hobgoblins
  • Puck
  • Brownies
  • Selkies
  • Leprechauns 

Unseelie Types:

  • Bogies, Bogles, Bogeymen, types generally feared by humans

The line between what are considered Seelie versus Unseelie fairies is quite blurred, with some folklorists claiming that almost all manner and type of fairies can be of either Seelie or Unseelie variety

For some folklorists and fairy enthusiasts, the temperament of fairies is the deciding factor in what makes them either Seelie or Unseelie - rather than 'type' of fairy. For those who hold with this theory, then - Brownies, Bogeymen, Leprechauns and Bogies ALL come in both Seelie and Unseelie varieties!

What makes a fairy Seelie (mischievous, emotion-charged, high-spirited, usually light-of heart, and generally harmless toward humans) is the time of their birth, emergence into the world. Summer-born and Spring-born fairies are considered Seelie in type.

Unseelie fairies emerge into the world during Winter and Fall months of the year. A harsher environment makes for a harsher fairy, and Unseelie fairies are noted to be bad-tempered, governed by inner greed and vices.

Unseelie fairies tend to be motivated more by their instincts and impulses, which is another reason why they can be more dangerous and detrimental to human beings than Seelie fairies are. Seelie fairies - though emotion-driven, usually have more control of instincts and impulses, and are almost always more capable of rational thinking than Unseelie fairies.

Fairy Faith

"Trooping" versus "Solitary"

Other ways in which folklorists place fairies into 'types' is to place them in the categories of either Trooping Fairies or Solitary Fairies.

Trooping fairies are aristocratic, elite members of 'fairy-dom' or the fairy realms. They often travel in processions and fairies of this type can be either 'good' or 'bad' sorts of fairyfolk.

Solitary fairies are what their names imply...lone and solitary figures. Perhaps it is their 'alone-ness' which makes them malicious, unfriendly, and often dangerous to humans. 

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Comments 27 comments

mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

Wonderful read, and I learned allot about Fairies etc that I didn't know before.


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 7 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

What was it that you believed before?


lxxy profile image

lxxy 7 years ago from Beneath, Between, Beyond

I'm guessing my friend with a lisp isn't quite the same thing, right? ;D

Just kidding...interesting stuff, mythbuster!


Herald Daily profile image

Herald Daily 7 years ago from A Beach Online

LOL, lxxy!

I'm not sure that I agree with the theory that faeries are fallen angels, but I can't profess to be expert enough on the subject to state that as anything but my opinion.

I believe that there are many energies around us that we aren't aware of or don't acknowledge. I like the idea of faeries. They sound like beautiful, gentle creatures.

Enjoyed this hub, thanks.


teeray profile image

teeray 7 years ago from Canada

lxxy - your friend with the lisp might be a faery?? I wouldn't put it past you, anyway, to have a fey friend at all!! ;)~


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 7 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Hello Herald! I'm laughing at lxxy, too!

Herald - you don't have to agree with the 'fallen angel' theory. I'm not sure I buy into that idea, myself. There are, however, a lot of fey-following experts for any of a number of theories. I'm not sure it is the faeries, themselves, that always interest me the most...it is the dedication of people to concentrate so wholeheartedly over the years, who classify and study 'fey folk' that impresses me very much.

There are in-depth time-lines, lineage charts, classification systems, geographical charts and a whole lot of complexities which surround the creatures known as 'fairies.' Who would have thought that personas like 'Tinkerbell' could be examined and extended so far?

Makes one wonder if fairies really do exist


Blushing Sprite 7 years ago

Very interesting!


ceciliabeltran profile image

ceciliabeltran 6 years ago from New York

Interesting and well written. Last year, I read an article in Discovery where they actually found bones of these hobbits. I however hear a lot of stories from the Islands about fairies and gnomes. Whenever an old tree is cut, they appear and they become mischievous, according to the islanders. My cousin claimed he saw some floating over his head one night when he slept in a part of the house where an old magnificent mango tree used to stand.

It is a persistent myth.


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Thanks for reading and commenting, ceciliabeltran. If you remember the name of the article you read, I'd sure appreciate it if you'd email the details to me. It sounds like an article I'd definitely enjoy. The "islanders"? Which culture are you speaking of here? Your native and your cousin's culture? Do your islanders/friends know why the gnomes and fairies become mischievous when the older trees are cut down? I'll try to follow up with you on this stuff later. I suspect, from your post, you've got some myths to share, no? I would love to hear your perspective on the article you read in Discovery...


HappyHer profile image

HappyHer 6 years ago from Cleveland, OH

Wonderful Hub! I believe in the wee people, just because their existence has not been proven one way or the other and it's fun to think of it. Of course, I used to believe I could jump and fly with an umbrella, but I got over that belief quite a few years ago - or maybe I just didn't have the right umbrella? Darn that Mary Poppins.... :)


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Hello HappyHer, I'm glad you enjoyed the hub. A lot of people, like yourself, believe in the wee people - an awful lot of people. A lot of people still believe in Mary Poppins, too :)


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 6 years ago from England

Hiya, I love fairies, I have a whole bunch of them sitting on the shelf by my bed! Not real, of course! well, maybe they come alive at night... but I have loved the lore behind them ever since I was a young child. And I thought it was great when they found the homo floresiensis (hobbit people) on the isle of Flores. Tiny people who have no link to the rest of us. They were obviously the ones that started of the little people legends within us. So if they were real, why not fairies? thanks this was great. Nell.


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Well, well, Nell Rose, now you've mentioned those hobbits, too. I'm going to have to do a bit of searching around on that topic because I haven't heard more than tidbits about those hobbit people...I think you should take a couple of nights next week and stay up late to find out if your fairies are real... you're probably off napping and as soon as you fall asleep, the fairies come alive and go to your kitchen and have a party!! Do you keep second-guessing how many cookies were left when you went to bed and stuff like that?? Psssst - fairies!!


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 6 years ago from England

Hiya, well my cupboards always seem to be open when I come down in the morning!........ha ha


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Ah! See there? I knew it! Fairies are real...they're just over there hiding at YOUR place! You should share your fairies just a bit more y'know? You'll have more cookies to yourself that way.


Crazdwriter 6 years ago

Very fun read mythbuster I will definitely have to look more into your hubs as they are hubs on topics I am interested in. Great hub about fairies. And I have to say

I do believe in fairies...I do believe in fairies...I do I do I do :-)


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Glad you thought it a fun read, Crazdwriter! Finally, another one who believes in the little people...it's IMPORTANT for their esteem (I wish the world would just 'get this') - that we stop minimizing them and saying they don't exist...just because they're small, it doesn't mean they aren't people too.

:)


kimberlyslyrics 6 years ago

hi myth,

I'm just about to sleep, am lying here with my laptop and thought I'd come snooping.

Sure glad I did. I just read this wonderful piece twice.

It's funny even now, with all the information I just learned about fairies, and I still feel the same way as I seem to always have.

Meaning I am almost afraid what to believe, in fear it proves that fairies do not exist.

Regardless of their origin or form, their habits or powers, I will always believe the little people exist somewhere, somehow, in my world.

They are just too wonderful to believe in, maybe keeping me as a child almost.

Now I am clearly no princess, and this ain't no fairies tail, but in myth I say all is possible like the presence of-this hub and all it entails.

thank you for you

Kimberly


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Hey Kimberly... the difference between those who call faeries "impossible" and those who say, "yes, they're around somewhere" is in a person's willingness to...

imagine...

There's no such thing as "true" and "false" here...

Just imagination.


april 6 years ago

yah ive heard that there is fairies in Ireland/ i believe there is some weirdness GOod hub


JayIsMyName 6 years ago

Wow; Lately I've been really into Celtic culture (thanks to this anime show called Earl and Fairy that talks a lot about faeries and other legends) so while searching the web, I came across your wonderful article of Faeries. I must say, this has increased my interest in faeries by a lot! My favorite faerie would definitely be the wood-wife.


ShotgunChelle 6 years ago

I've been a huge fan of faerie folklore for a while now, reading a lot of WB Yeats and Jeremiah Curtain. I always appreciate it when I read something that takes a more informative approach to mythology.


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Hey ShotgunChelle,

Glad you appreciated the hub. Thanks for dropping a couple of names - Yeats and Curtain. I am familiar with Yeats to a certain extent but not well with Curtain so I'm going to have a look around for some J Curtain viewpoint. Just to see what info you're on to...


Lisa A 5 years ago

I've seen a faery 2 years ago- not in a meditation or dream- but while I was awake one morning. She chose to appear as she looks in her realm. I was totally in shock at this encounter as throughout my childhood I never believed in them. have to confirm that they are 100% real. Well , I was wrong. I hope everyoone here also has their own encounter one day- you're life will be changed.


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 5 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Sounds like your encounter was a pleasant surprise, Lisa A. Thanks for coming by to share about your experience with spotting a fairy!


Megan 5 years ago

Fairies can not be fallen angles because when they fall from the grace of God they become demons automatically. Fairies are nice creatures not demons and not the devil because there is only one devil and that was the angel Lucifer and he was the first fallen angel.


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 5 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Thank you for stopping by and sharing your opinions, Megan! I'm sure a lot of people would agree with what you say - particularly those of Christian faiths.

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