The Banshee: An Irish Legend

Myth, Superstition and Legend

Most of us have heard of the legend of the Banshee. Close your eyes and picture it. What sort of image does that word bring about? What does your mind see? A floating, misty figure howling through the woods? An evil hag-like creature, screaming into the night? Well, you are partly right. There is so much more to the story than that. The Banshee is a rich, interesting myth of a much more superstitious time, in what is still a superstitious land.

Ireland is rich with stories and myths of fairies, ghosts, leprechauns, and other strange things. None of these inspire fear the way a Banshee does, when the word crosses someone's lips. We imagine unearthly howls in the forest on a dark night. The truth can be that scary, but there is more to the stories than an angry, screaming woman in the woods.

So, What Is A Banshee?

A Banshee is called many things and goes by many names. Including Banshee, Banshi, Benshee, a female fairy, Woman of Peace, Lady of Death, the Angel of Death, the White Lady of Sorrow, the Nymph of the Air, or the Spirit of the Air.

Whatever you call her, she is one thing, and one thing alone. A Banshee is a disembodied spirit; a ghost, in other words. Some Irish believe that the souls of the departed do not get taken from this earth, but dwell here, and are often tied here. They either enjoy the happiness of a life well lived, or if during their life, they lived a life of sin, they were forced to suffer punishment. The spirits of the bad are restrained; forced to pay for their sins in areas near where these sins were committed.

Banshees are spirits still tied to earthly matters. They are said to attend only to the old families. Banshees are believed to follow the family, either with good intent or ill, until every last descendant has died and been buried. Though it is said that a Banshee will not follow family members to foreign lands, instead sticking to the lovely shores of Ireland. They either had strong ties to their family, and a desire in death to watch over them, or in life, they had reasons to hate their family. This gives us the two distinct types of Banshees.

A Banshee Halloween Decoration
A Banshee Halloween Decoration

Caspernia, The Friendly Banshee

OK, so I kid a little with the title there.

A 'friendly Banshee' is one who in life, had strong ties to her family, and in death, felt the need to watch over them, and keep close to them. A friendly Banshee is not the horrible, scary thing we imagine. Banshees are rarely seen, but are said to, at times, show themselves. Kind Banshees are said to be seen as young, beautiful women, with pale faces, either black or golden hair, and long, flowing, white garments.

The song, because that is what it really is, of a friendly Banshee is sorrowful and longing. It is filled with love and concern for those she loves. It is a warning to her loved ones.

It is believed that a Banshee's song can be heard in the few days leading up to the death of a family member. The wails, or songs, are most often heard at night, and fairly often, the song is only heard by the one whom the warning is intended for. A Banshee sings her song in warning to her family of the death of a beloved family member.

A Friendly Banshee;  drawing by H.R. Heaton
A Friendly Banshee; drawing by H.R. Heaton

A Not So Friendly Warning

On the other end of the spectrum is a Banshee that we are all a little more familiar with. Remember that image you had in your head of a Banshee? This is a lot more in line with that.

A 'hateful Banshee' in life, had reasons to hate her family, and in death, is a dreaded visitor by the members of the family against which she has hate or anger. She is seen as ugly and twisted, with distorted features, and hate pouring from every line on her face. The screaming howls of a hateful Banshee are enough to make your blood run cold. Imagine the scariest witch, from the scariest movie you've ever seen. Now make her even uglier, scarier, and screaming unearthly howls at you, on a dark night.

Rather than provide warning of the death of a family member, a hateful Banshee is screaming in spiteful, hateful celebration as a member of the family meets his or her end. It may come as a warning, but a dire, frightening warning.

A Hateful Banshee on a Windy Night; drawing by H.R. Heaton
A Hateful Banshee on a Windy Night; drawing by H.R. Heaton

A Belief Fades

No one is sure how a Banshee obtains her prophetic knowledge, though there are theories out there. Some believe that each family member has a silent attendant, an observer, who follows them and reports information back to the Banshee. This is not a widely held believe, and belief in Banshees altogether is fading.

At one time, Banshees were held in regard as a firm belief, and to not believe was blasphemous. With the passage of time, and the disappearance of numerous noble Irish names, some that have died out, and some that have gone off to other lands, the Banshee has fallen into myth and superstition.

If ever you venture to the Emerald Isle, and you happen to be out and about at night, take a listen. You may just hear the haunting song, or the frightening wails of a Banshee. But, be warned, for she foretells only death.

Cry of The Banshee

I have written another Hub on the infamous leprechaun. Check it out here.

© 2008 Anna Marie Bowman

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Comments 121 comments

kylie thiboult 2 years ago

i have been read about


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Anna Marie Bowman 3 years ago from Florida Author

Anna--The scream is a warning, but legend says that it is a fate that one cannot avoid.


Anna 3 years ago

Question: is the scream a warning; therefore, creating an opportunity for people to prevent death of a loved one, or is the scream generally seen as a destiny no one can see but the banshee


mkennedy 3 years ago

I love the story about banshees some say it's a woman's spirit hat leaves her


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Anna Marie Bowman 3 years ago from Florida Author

I am not sure how it always happens.


AddictedNerd 3 years ago

Is it true you become a banshee after your heart is broken and turns to ice? Really interested in mythology I am a writer and looking for the best celtic creatures for my book. Please give me any information not found on this page


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Anna Marie Bowman 3 years ago from Florida Author

Brendan--Legend says they are tied to the land, so it may not have been, but who knows...legend and fact are rarely the same thing.


Brendan Patrick Gallagher 3 years ago

When I was a young lad, growing up in an Irish family in Upstate New York, in the U.S. I was taking a shower one evening, I must have been eight or nine. My brother and I used to sneak into the bathroom and scare each other while the other showered. Why not, right? We were kids! So one time I heard this singing, as I was showering; very high pitched. I thought it was my brother trying to spook me. As I shout "Hey, relax..." and open the curtain, I see a women with black hair, hollowed out eyes, pail white skin and a long white dress standing right in front of me. Her jaw opened and she screamed, then ran into the wall and was gone. I was so scared. The image is forever burned in my mind and I hate even writing about it, but I feel it was a banshee. I'm a Gallagher, but my moms side is O'Neill, so years later maybe it has a connection with my moms Irish side? I may never know...


unknown 3 years ago

she is real


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Anna Marie Bowman 3 years ago from Florida Author

OneWithTheWolves- if you say so


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Anna Marie Bowman 3 years ago from Florida Author

Veronica- Thank you for sharing your story. It is always interesting to hear. I am sorry about your grandfather.


OneWithTheWolves 3 years ago

I'm part Banshee so I understand these things.


Veronica 3 years ago

About three years ago I was at my grandparents house waiting for my school bus and I was looking out the window and saw a woman with frizzy dirty blonde hair, black holes for eyes and slim. Her skin was white and she wore a khaki dress. At first I just gasped and thought maybe it was a really good trick of the light haha I turned my head and then back again and there she was again, only a few inches from my face. I let out a scream and she was gone. A few months later my grandfather who was battling cancer passed away. I had no knowledge of banshee's until tonight when a friend told me I saw a Banshee. It gives me chills now...


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Anna Marie Bowman 4 years ago from Florida Author

Patrick-- Interesting!! Thank you for sharing!


PatrickNN 4 years ago

I was visited yesterday at the dawn by a female face staring over me in bed , she had black Hair which had the straight hair a style of a Japanees Cartoon figure, deep blue almost black eyes her skin was white like chalk, her teeth where broken and Jaggerd this is a visit from a Banshee, found out the banshee comes from the 5 Great Galic oldest family names in Ireland - O'Grady,O'Neil which at this point when I lived at my Brothers the girl next door was called O'grady and my middle name is Neil !!, and the other's are O'Brians, and Conchobhairs,Coamh'anachs, And Names with Mac Airlie Clan.And I have True other Spirtual event's and Living wittness's and photos - Muslim LightWorker - Servant Of God.


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Anna Marie Bowman 4 years ago from Florida Author

fishyface-- thank you!


fishyface 4 years ago

I loved it very interesting!


Chipy 4 years ago

Blah blah blah hehehe


SuperWhoLock 4 years ago

Does anyone now the mythology behind the silver comb? Why does the Banshee carry one? And why is it bad luck to pick it up?


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Anna Marie Bowman 4 years ago from Florida Author

banshee-- There is a post that someone left that explains one legend of how the banshee came to be.


banshee 4 years ago

how was the bnshee made


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Anna Marie Bowman 4 years ago from Florida Author

Jamiie-- I am glad you found it interesting!

Kerry-- Thank you for sharing! I agree, they can be terrifying. In regards to the movie...is that the one with Sean Connery in it?

Deaglan-- That is a beautiful and haunting story. Thank you for sharing it!!

Bree-- It sounds like what you saw was more likely a ghost. It may be the spirit of someone who died in that house, or is connected to it in some way.

MaryKate-- Some people are more sensitive to things like that. So, it is not surprise that only certain people can see it. Your story is truly frightening. Thank you for sharing it!

TheBanshee-- This is the second story of a figure in a head-to-toe green dress,; maybe that means something. Interesting story! Thank you for sharing.


The banshee 4 years ago

Im half irish half scottish and was looking to search up my history, Happening upon the "Hub" how you call it helped me alot. I found it interesting! Ive had dreams of a single beautiful woman. Wait-lemme restart- Before my great grandfather died I had a dream involving a beautiful woman who had long black hair, light ice blue souless eyes, and grey skin. She wore A GREEN DRESS FROM head to toe covered in a black cloak. She looked towards me and mouthed "Say goodbye" after that I woke up. It wasn't a quite scary dream but it was enough to make me change my mind about staying home. I love this blog "hub" thing. :D


Marykate 4 years ago

Hi I like others stumbled upon your page, I have found the stories fascinating, I am Irish and my surname has Mc in it. I have had experienced the banshee three times so far in my life and saw her on one of those occasions. The first was when I was fourteen and was with my two sisters and a friend walking to the youth club, we at first heard crying and sobbing which got more and more intense and loud, it seemed to be coming from directly above our heads, we stopped walking and looked above us, it was dusk, on a roof close to where we were was a hooded cloaked figure about 6 feet tall, it had no features that you could make out and as she stood there her cloak blew about in the wind, my sister next to fainted! When we got home my parents had informed us that our cousin had passed away around the time we had saw the figure. On the second occasion eight years later I was in the family home with my sisters when we heard someone crying outside the window again it grew quite loud and sounded like someone who was broken hearted that night we received a telephone call to say that our uncle had passed away. The third and final time happened in August of this year, I now live in Scotland and was getting ready for my work around 8am when I heard crying, I turned off the radio and there it was, someone was sobbing and crying outside the window (I live in an attic flat) and I knew in my heart much to my dread that someone was dead in Ireland, approximately 2hours later my sister who was with me on the previous two occasions and with who I am very close rang to say her father-in-law had died. I know that other members of our family circle have heard her over the years but my sisters and friend are the only people I know that have seen her, for such a long time after I couldn't get her image out of my head and to be honest even though that first time was 27 years ago I most definitely wouldn't want to see her again.


Bree 4 years ago

Your article was really insightful and I have been all over the web looking for info about Banshee's. It's just not as plentiful you know...well anything about faery really. I sort of grew up liking these legends even though they really have nothing to do with my family or background. I just feel a connection to stuff like this.

I do have a story to share about the Banshee though. I'm not of Anglo-Saxon or Irish descent, but my mother's last name is McCrory and I share it.

I was wondering if anyone could help me figure this out. Okay so it began when I was walking home one night from class I believe it was around June I believe. I was almost halfway home when I was walking down this long street. While I was walking it was quiet, calm, and everyone was mostly inside at this time of night. There was very little wind and the night was pleasant. I got a strange feeling as I was coming towards a fork in the neighborhood and I felt the need to watch the few houses in front of me. It was like getting goosebumps and I felt like I should be anticipating something. As I came to this home surrounded by shrubs and bushes with a small tree in the front. The front door kept catching my attention. It looked normal, but something kept nagging me. As I got closer I noticed something in the screen door that kept appearing and then disappearing. When I was in front of it whatever it was appeared in full view between the two doors.

I was so shocked and frightened that I let out a small scream and I grabbed my beating chest. There was this deathly pale matronly looking women who was just suddenly standing there. She had these milky pale eyes that seemed to be unseeing and dead. They were wide and her mouth was in a solemn line. Her hair was wavering, floating, and sort of in an undone style . It was stringy and a pale white gold blonde. I knew what I was looking at was a spirit and an ancient one at that. Everything in me was screaming death and that this was an omen. She was wearing a green dress that covered her from the neck down and it was rippling as if where ever she was it was extremely windy. This figure was illuminating, ghostly, and she was brighter then the nightlights everything else seemed dim in comparison to her. But not in a sunny way more like how the moon lights things it was cold. She never screamed, wailed, or anything just appeared and stayed.

I was watching freaked out and walking backwards before I broke into a all out run. I couldn't take the presence anymore. I had tried to forget about it, but I was wondering what is meant the whole time. Then about 3 months later my dog past away. lol I'm like I did not see a Banshee and it just came to warn me my beloved dog was leaving me... crazy.

I was wondering of you know what it means to see one and she doesn't cry or wail? Do Banshee's follow non Irish people or people with very little? Or was that a freak event? Was that really a Banshee...All I know is that,that scarred me for life. That's something you never forget.

Thank You.


Deaglan 5 years ago

Hi I'm irish. I love irish myths and legends, it really is part of our identity and you'll find no other country more proud. My mum told me this story, each family has their own account. Thousands of year when Ireland was whole, a king ruled all of ireland. He never married, even though rulers from distant lands wanted to become his husband. On a lonely horse ride, he stumbled across a servant, she was the most beautiful woman in the world. He wanted to marry her. And so declared his love publicy, the people where scandalised. A servant and a king. But what could they do, they dare not rebel against their ruler. They high courts approached the king, it was witchcraft, servants where not beautiful, and the only reason a servant could have possibly made a king love her must have been Magic. On the month leading to their wedding, It was said the king had to travel the ocean and go to war. His servant, his love promised she would wait for him, but year passed and therefore was pronounced dead. Sitting on the edge of the cliff in Ireland looking out to sea, for her love to sail back, she heard roars, the old families, o leary's o donnells, o neill's mc donalds had seized their chance, they where going to kill the witch, they approcahed her as she was brushing her long golden hair singing her lament of love and loss, she stood up to face her crowd, and screamed, promised them that she would always wait for her love to return to ireland, and that the blood on the families hands if they killed her, would always remain and with a push the families pushed her off the cliff, the screams of pain and of the fall are rumoured to those whails we here today, the banshee will never leave this world, she will search for her love, and see that every family member is dead.


yo! 5 years ago

y did u stop talking to us


Kerry 5 years ago

Hi iam from n.Ireland and found this all very interesting, I stumbled across this when searching for details of wat dreaming of banshees meant! I had a terrifying dream bout one! I had to actually get up to get a drink of water and checked all my windows and doors were locked!! I find banshees terrifying and deff believe in them, I always remember my mum telling me bout them when I was younger and she's not the type to believe in legends or myths! By the way u should check out the film darby o,gill and the little people there is a terrifying banshee in that! I just hope that me or someone close to me isn't really affected by my dream!! : (


Jamiie Durbauree 5 years ago

INTERESTING


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

felicia-- Your story sent chills up my spine. I don't blame you. I would be leery about letting my kids out there after something like that.


felicia 5 years ago

i am an irish mum of 2 and my mother recently passed away she was a bitter old woman then when i was hanging my washing i saw an old decrepit woman outside and she had sunken eyes and screeched after looking at me and said to me the day is for the living and the night is for the dead and now i cant let my children go out there


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

Patrick-- That is a terrifying dream!! I would have had to have a cigarette, too! It might very well have been a banshee. I hope you learn a lot about your family history. If you are willing to pay for it, I hear that ancestry.com is a great resource.


patrick heaney 5 years ago

hi im looking up information about banshees because last week i 100% believe i have seen one.

I am half irish and i had the most weird dream. It started with me making my way though a wood, climbing over trees and around them. I came to the end and climbed down a little wall onto a big area of green with tents and different music playing and people standing, talking and sitting around. I then stood with some people who where sitting on chairs talking. Everyone is drunk and having a good time, when i notice and woman with the most scary eyes i have ever seen walk past. They had a really dark, thick, black outline, were really really white and had no colour but big black puples. I ask someone who is with me if that woman was on drugs or something, when i spot another woman who is quite large with black hair who has the same terrifying eyes. I stare at her in horror when i notice a lady with long ginger hair and with them eyes, snarling at me for staring at her friend ( i think ). She then proceeded to walk towards me wailing. I shot awake and felt so scared i had to get up and have a cigarette. My cat who was only 2 died 5 days later.

I believe she was a hateful banshee but after reading this i am keen to find out more about my Irish Heaney side of the family.

Thank you :) xx


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

lauraxx-- That is an interesting story! Thank you for sharing that. Definitely scary!!


lauraxxXD 5 years ago

im from ireland, and ive never heard the banshee but my friend did she said "i was on holidays in donegal(she lives in leitrim) and she heard someone or something screaming of screeching and when she got home her cat was lying on top of their windowsill dead :( she never forgets it , and then 2 days later she heard the noise again and that eveing she went outside and the cat had moved to another wall, all of her family said they hadent moved it, and she lives in a forest with no neighbours so no one else could have moved it. lol it was so scary xxx


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

Chasyn-- Thank you so much!!!


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Chasyn 5 years ago from Seattle

Anna- it is offfical, you have some truly amazing hubs :)


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

Denis-- That would be a great honor to me. I will send you and email from my email address, rather than here, so that we might work out the details.


denis398@gmail.com 5 years ago

Dear Sir/Madam,

My name is Denis Moloney and I work as a researcher for a broadcasting company called GiantLeap Productions.

I am looking for permission to use the following lines from your publications: Whatever you call her, she is one thing, and one thing alone. A Banshee is a disembodied spirit; a ghost, in other words. Some Irish believe that the souls of the departed do not get taken from this earth, but dwell here, and are tied here. They either enjoy the happiness of a life well lived, or if during their life, they lived a life of sin, they were forced to suffer punishment. The spirits of the bad are restrained; forced to pay for their sins in areas near where these sins were committed.

from So, What Is A Banshee?

for a radio programme we are producing that features the experiences of someone from the county of Kerry

We were lucky to get some funding from the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland to go around the 32 counties of Ireland and interview older people about life in their home county growing up.

The format of the series is that we do not intend to use questions and answer. Rather we are using an actor to read relevant lines from poetry, prose, novels, statutory agency literature, brochures... anything that relates to the specifics of what the interviewee has spoken about.

For this programme, the person has talked at length about When she was young her fear of the Banshee and we thought prefacing the piece with your quotation, would be a wonderful way of introducing the content. I hope you will agree to this.

If there is a small cost, we would be happy to meet it.

We would very much appreciate if you would reply in the positive or indeed the negative in regards to this request within 7 days of receiving this email.

Kind Regards and many thanks for taking the time to consider this request.

Denis Moloney

www.giantleapproductions.ie


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

dtyir7i-- Glad you are having fun...

yotl-- thank you?


your one true love 5 years ago

but.. i.. i love you Anna..


dtyir7i 5 years ago

we were just having sooooooooooo much fun reading about banshees we wrote TRUE comments dont be racist


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

I am not sure what to make of all that...so strange...sounds as if someone was having just a little too much fun...lol


56+44 5 years ago

nhyu,k ily


lol 5 years ago

hello ur kool


caitlin 5 years ago

imm a nigga


hi 5 years ago

hi i love this paage im researching banshees 4 school and its like amazing i cant believe it

guess what i found out IM A BANSHEE!!!!!


hiiya 5 years ago

i love u!! ily


hahahahahahaha 5 years ago

hi this like page is like amazing like wow!

wow look at all the colours

my hands blurry


yoyo pigeon brain 5 years ago

'dup in ze hood. waddup mah nigga


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

rocky-- Give ya that one...though, some would disagree..thanks for reading...


rocky 5 years ago

just scary ain't it.but above all of these things and us humans is the almighty lord of heaven.


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

kkkk...-- I don't even know you. But, I love my fans, so ily!


kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk ilyyy 5 years ago

hey u didn't say ily


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

kkkk...-- TY! LOL


kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk ilyyy 5 years ago

hi i just wanted you to say ily :)


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

dragongirl-- As far as that goes, if it's a friendly banshee, it would be sad when a member of the family she is tied to dies. If it is an angry banshee, I doubt she would be as upset.


dragongirl2319 5 years ago

I also heard that banshees are sad when the people die. Never angry.


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

PaperNotes-- Thanks for stopping by!!! Glad you enjoyed it.

Sunshine-- I agree the idea of a spirit, even if they are well-meaning, following your entire family around is a little creepy.

dragongirl-- In a sense, yes.

Storytellersrus-- Thanks for reading!!! As for my profile pic, it is me, just had a little fun with photoshop.


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Storytellersrus 5 years ago from Stepping past clutter

This hub is lots of fun, even if banshees are fairies!

So, I have a question about your profile photo. Is this a self-portrait? It is very nice.


dragongirl2319 5 years ago

Actually, banshees are fairies.


max 5 years ago

im reedin a book about mithacal creatures


Candice 5 years ago

This was very interesting to read i loved it!


Sunshine 5 years ago

I couldn't care less about how "friendly" they are, their just straight up CREEPY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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PaperNotes 5 years ago

What an interesting read. Good job!


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Anna Marie Bowman 5 years ago from Florida Author

Aspiring-- Glad you found it, then!

dandeelion-- I am really glad you found this! I hope it helped you out a lot. Don't feel dumb. I don't think I knew what a banshee was in 6th grade, either.


dandeelion 5 years ago

Hi I' doing a report on Ireland and I'm in 6th grade I needed something fore my culture paragraph. This is great stuff! :) I didn't evan know what a bandshee was until I looked here I olny knew the kind from Avatar so now I feel really dumb!


AspiringAuthor-DD 5 years ago

just what i was looking for!


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

hypnodude-- Thank you again!!! I didn't either until I did some research.


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hypnodude 6 years ago from Italy

Very good hub, I didn't know about the good Banshee, while I knew about the bad one. I love fairy tales. :)

Rated up and beautiful, and I'm a follower now.

Have a great day!


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

candysoul--dreams are strange. I don't know what to tell you.


candysoul 6 years ago

almost forgot i heard a creepy voice that said this is a warning or somthin like that


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

candysoul-- That is pretty off topic. I am not sure. It is a strange dream. I don't really know what to tell you. It sounds like a pretty bad nightmare. Definitely not a good thing at all. I don't have any idea what it could be, though, other than maybe a ghost, or evil spirit. That's the best I can tell you.


candysoul 6 years ago

this is kinda off topic but i've been having these anoying dreams about this creature the first one i had was well i will tell you so ya. the dream started of with seeing this picture it kept on flashing she looked pretty there actually she looked beautiful on it but than i saw this teenager walking down to a fishing dock some sailor was fishing the teen boy went to check this watery area used one of the old nailed wood pieces to hold himself than he felt a tight grip to his left ankle and heard a growl thats when the old man pulled him up and asked him what was the matter with him than the teen boy went down to the stair while the old sailor yelled dont go down there its not safe but it was to late that thieng or what the woman in that paint is now and any how she put one hand in his mouth tickling his throught while her other ripped it out at that time she staired at the old man that jumped in a speed boat while a big pirat ship pased by at the same time she growled out high and the boy opend his eyes and looked as monsterous in the eyes and had no color to his skin like hers than he too growld so basicly is that a good or bad thieng cus i didn't watch a movie that night and none of the movies i watched were even nearly close to that


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

your-- ummm..ok...I am guessing you are in high school. I hope you spelling is a little better when you do your project than it was on this interesting response. My guess as to your grade...best bet is a C. LOL. As to whether or not I believe. I never really did say, did I?


your ass  6 years ago

so yes um im doing a project on this bashee or banshi like it matters haha to be honest i think this is all b#$%! seriously no ofence to all u myth believers im just not prone to stupidness screw the myth im on the religon

p.s. i dont like banshees but it was interesting to read


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

Maria-- That is a great story! Thank you for sharing!! My question is, did he pick up the comb??


Maria 6 years ago

This is a pretty late comment haha, I just stumbled upon this page.. I'm Irish, lived here all of my life. When my brother was 9, he and my cousin went for a cycle, just as they passes a neighbours house with the sir name "o'neill" my brother saw a white ghost-like creature come towards him faster than they were cycling, he fell off of the bike. Not long afterwards the grandmother of the boys living in that house passed away.. My brother didn't hear her cries, but did see a glittery comb on the ground.


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

xobliam-- Thank you!!! I have never heard of the band or the song. I will have to check it out!!


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xobliam 6 years ago

Wow...The other day I was talking about Alan Hull of the band Lindisfarne and of a song called lady Eleanor which starts with the line - Banshee playing musician sitting lotus on the floor....I didn't have a clue what a Banshee was and even had it spelled Bashee....I'm correcting the typo and linking you on the word.

Thanks for being so interesting and informative.


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

AC-- Not trying to give you, or anyone else, nightmares! LOL! Glad you liked it!

K O-- I am sorry to hear about your loss. Thank you for the post, though.


K O Dwyer 6 years ago

if you ever here the screams of the banshee warn everyone you because we never belived it ontil it came true one night i hered it i was so scared because my mam said she hered it and the following day my grandad died but this moring we found out our friends healthy dad died sudenlly so were are posting this to tell you the banshee is REAL !!!!!!!


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ACSutliff 6 years ago

Anna Marie,

You have a way of putting visuals in my head that make me afraid to go to bed tonight. I haven't had nightmares in so long, please don't let me dream of a banshee tonight! Yikes!

I'm happy to learn more about banshees! This was informative and also entertaining. Great hub!


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

vrajavala-- Some interesting topics. The Irish Potato famine was devastating, though I don't hear much about it anymore. Some parts of history just seem to get lost along the way. Maybe you should use some of your reading to write hubs about things like that.


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vrajavala 6 years ago from Port St. Lucie

I just finished "Queen of the seas" about the legend of Isolde and Tristan. It's about the "Goddess Power". Now I'm reading "the Killing of Major Denis Mahon" who was responsible for sending out thousands of the Irish during the Potato famine on the coffin ships.So much genocide going on. Now, it's the Mexico sending its poor to us who then get picked up by the "coyotes" for ransom and torture.

good hub


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

Ashlee-- You have an interesting science teacher. Sounds like a fun class. Thank you for reading!!


Ashlee 6 years ago

I am not Irish, but our science teacher asked us to post a blog about things that are believed to be true but can not be scientificly proven real. I kinda want to hear the Banshee now...just to see what it sounds like. I would prefer the friendly one XD I find this very interesting, and I do not know if the Banshee is real. Then again, who does? I'm 11 and sometimes when everyone is alseep, I hear footsteps, and the floor creaks. I always freeze, but then I jump up and fling the door open. Nothing. So I always walk down to my pairents bedroom (which is already past my sister's) and look to see if they're awake. It always scares me, but I manage to go back to sleep. Very interesting story...thank you!!!


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

caratunk--Thank you. I will have to check it out.

Louise-- Thank you for sharing your story. Very interesting.


Louise 6 years ago

Louise from Northern Ireland (Tyrone)... I think its intresting that Spirits retell things back to that persons banshee, as over the past few months when i'm in my house i keep seeing things in the corner of my eye, but if i turn my head to look there is nothing there

Also, my Mother once heard Deathly Screams in the middle of the night outside her house, she asked my Father if he heard them but he said he heard nothing (Because he is not a McCann) ... Mum went and told my Granmother who said that a Banshee was known to follow the McCann family,it really scared my mother, a few days later my Granmother Brother died...

Ireland really is a lovely part of the world, really rich in all sorts of faerie(fairy) tales. :D Hope you like it


caratunk 6 years ago

For a great novel on a modern day banshee, read:

Deadly Gift

by Heather Graham


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

Tchardo-- Most irish legends and mythical figures are shrouded in great mystery. They seem to be part morality tale, part something to blame when strange things happen, part story. I love the irish madness as well.


Tchardo profile image

Tchardo 6 years ago

An archetypal figure? A negative animus symbol? Or a sort of negative warrior anarchist symbol? They've always seemed tied to concepts of guilt and vengeance, somehow... not that I've seen one in person, of course.

Patricia: That's normal for Irish folk, right? ;) Please don't tell me that you're all "normal" like everyone else! I appreciate Irish madness very much.


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

Frost-- Never saw that. I will have to check it out!


Frost 6 years ago

i love banshees and ive seen that episode of charmed, and since im Irish i wanted to learn more about the banshee that came from ireland


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Anna Marie Bowman 6 years ago from Florida Author

RosWebbART-- It really is! It is all so interesting. I have been studying Irish legends for a long time. Thank you for reading!!

bonny2010-- Interesting how similar the stories are. It makes you wonder.


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bonny2010 6 years ago from outback queensland

"couple of stories on or min min light seen in the outback, thats scary is your out there on your own, we also have a headless stockman and a legend which says - if you hear the curlew call your name three times - your dead. when if find those stories somewhere in my mountain of paperwork I 'll hub it. thanks for yor story.


RosWebbART profile image

RosWebbART 6 years ago from Ireland

Ireland is filled with superstition and legend; some interesting stuff. Thanks for this hub.


Anna Marie Bowman profile image

Anna Marie Bowman 7 years ago from Florida Author

patricia-- Thank you for sharing!! Interesting story! So, how did I do covering the legend? I look forward to the day I can visit Ireland!!!!


patricia 7 years ago

im Irish i live in Ireland and i have to say i do believe in some of the storys told in Ireland when my mother and father passed away i had he bedroom next to theres. One night about a month after my mother died i heard three knocks three times from the inside of their bedroom door. I knew there was no-one in there because only my sister and i live in the house but when i told my sister's they said well she always hated sleepin with de door closed. i have heard and seen other things as well but you should be more afraid of the livin than de dead. the livin can kill ya. anyway dont be afraid to visit Ireland most of us are normal. hahahaha


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Anna Marie Bowman 7 years ago from Florida Author

It's just me-- That is very interesting! Thank you for sharing.


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It's just me 7 years ago from Alaska

Spirits can follow families anywhere. I saw, but didn't hear a Banshee in Oklahoma just before my sister died. I pointed it out to my husband as we were driving to our home along a tree lined road. It terrified the heck out of him as he's only second generation American, and he believed (until then) that the spirits were just tales of the "Old Country."


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Anna Marie Bowman 7 years ago from Florida Author

secondreview-- Thank you for the added information!!! There are so many stories, from so many countries and cultures of creatures, spirits, etc. living in a place just slightly apart from our own. They are truly interesting.


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secondreview 7 years ago from Toronto, Canada

The sidhe, pronounced "shee" were ireland's fairies and were in fact believed to be an immortal race living in a mirrored land. They dabbled and played with humans' lives but never cared about them. You are right about modern times as I think it's the belief in them that supports their existence.


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Anna Marie Bowman 7 years ago from Florida Author

Kett-- Interesting family story. Thank you for sharing. I don't find it hard to believe either. Glad you have found this Hub helpful with your English assignment!! Best of luck!


Kett  7 years ago

Heyy Anna.

I'm part Irish and in 2006, when I was 11, my family visited some of my relatives in Ireland. They told us some stories of their encounters with the Screaming Banshee. And yes, they were just before deaths. Apparently, they have seen and heard the Screaming Banshee several times. So, they believe the Legend is true.

I don't find it hard to believe either because my mum says she saw a ghost when she was young (not the banshee) and I don't believe she is lying. Esspecially since my sister and I were very young when she told us this story. She's not the type that would try to scare us for amusement.

PS: I'm doing an English assignment on Monsters and Villians and I have found this site very helpful. Thankks!! <3

<kettumii> =]


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Anna Marie Bowman 7 years ago from Florida Author

Dolores-- I agree, still kinda scary, but it would be nice to have someone watching over me and my family.


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Dolores Monet 7 years ago from East Coast, United States

I don't care how 'friendly' the Banshee is, she's just plain scary.


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Anna Marie Bowman 7 years ago from Florida Author

Dottie--  Glad I could spook you a little!

eileen--  Wow!!  Thank you for this!  I have never encountered someone who has actually had an experience with a Banshee.  My family name is Byrnes, or the older form, O'Byrne, but as far as I know, no stories about Banshees in my family, and it is an old Irish family.


eileen 7 years ago

I am Irish> My grandmother heard the Banshee before her dad died. The banshee follows some Irish families. Usually old Irish names like like O Mc or Mac Donnell for example. I think it is wonderful to be warned before your death. You are going to die anyway when your times come


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Dottie1 8 years ago from MA, USA

I love to get myself all spooked out just before Halloween which is tomorrow. Thanks for helping me with that job! I'mmm scarrrred! BOOOOOOOO, are you scared too?


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Anna Marie Bowman 8 years ago from Florida Author

Jade- I cannot give you the answer to that. The Banshee has fallen into myth. Some believe and some do not. I have never experienced anything myself, but as of yet, have never had the chance to go to Ireland to find out.


Jade 8 years ago

is the banshee real because people in my school is saying a lota stuf abot the banshee i just wana no is it real wb !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Anna Marie Bowman profile image

Anna Marie Bowman 8 years ago from Florida Author

Rodney- I look forward to my first visit to Ireland, and I greatly hope I never hear that warning song. Though the whole thing is very interesting. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!!


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

A good hub, and a subject that will keep you looking over your shoulder if you be sitting in Eire at either the pub or safe in the hearth of your home. But to be sure, you would not want to be walking without lantern in the dark of the night after uttering those words.


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Anna Marie Bowman 8 years ago from Florida Author

Chris, I'm with ya there, I love learning anything about Ireland. Top o' the mornin' to you, too!!


Christoph Reilly profile image

Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

I always new of the Banshee, of course, but didn't know the story behind them. Being Irish, I had to have a look as I love to learn anything about Ireland. Informative and fun! Top o' the mornin' to ya!

P.S. I used your avatar in my new hub about avatars. Letting you know so you can yell at me if you want.


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Anna Marie Bowman 8 years ago from Florida Author

Princessa--I think I have seen that episode of Charmed. I have always been facinated with Irish myths and legends. The banshee seemed to be a good fit for Halloween.

misty & Zsuzsy--Thank you for your comments!!


Zsuzsy Bee profile image

Zsuzsy Bee 8 years ago from Ontario/Canada

Great hub! It always amazes me of how many tales and folklore come from Ireland.

regards Zsuzsy


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mistyhorizon2003 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

Spooky stuff, and a fascinating insight into the history behind the banshee.


mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

Spooky stuff, and a fascinating insight into the history behind the banshee.


Princessa profile image

Princessa 8 years ago from France

I loved it! I was fascinated by the Banshee since I saw one in an episode of "charmed". Not long ago, I also read a story about a French man visiting Ireland with friends. One of his friends heard the banshee screaming all night and told the tour guide about it next morning without knowing about the legend. Needless to say that the friend never came back alive to France...

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