Cousin of the Leprechaun
Clobhairs and His Nibs
In Irish lore, the Clurichaun is cousin to the better known Leprechaun. Often also called "clobhairs" and His Nibs, the Clurichaun is smaller than a Leprechaun and is like a night time version of its gold hoarding cousin.
To say I've turned up conflicting assertions about the nature of this creature is a gross understatement.
Some (only a few) say the Clurichaun is a much more cheerful fey entity than are Leprechauns and that these little feys are good luck to have around - provided you don't crowd them or stifle them - they like their freedom. They will even help you around the house or farm... If you're polite when dealing with a Clurichaun it is said they will stay on with you and guard your wine cellar but if you tick them off - or if they find you drunk, they'll wreak havoc upon your home/establishment and you'll never be able to keep wine again (it will turn to vinegar). They like to become active at night, like to drink and mess around while most people are catching up on sleep.
More accounts than not tell of the Clurichaun as being more nasty-tempered and more mischievous than a Leprechaun and a heck of a boozer - often turning into one of those "nasty drunks" that most people like to avoid at all costs. In their drunken rowdiness, Clurichauns may hop on your livestock or large dogs and ride the sheep or canines around in the middle of the night. Perhaps you've never seen the little fay but it's a good bet your livestock and dogs have.
Many sources I've encountered say Clurichauns and Leprechauns are exactly the same type of Irish being - just named differently according to who's telling about them in different regions of Ireland e.g. in different Irish land regions, some prefer to say "Clurichaun," others down the road or across the land prefer to say "Leprechauns."
What I seem to be finding is that where Clurichauns are said to be nasty little things, the Wikipedia article on Clurichauns is heavily quoted or copied and pasted. The Clurichaun article on Wikipedia definitely says Clurichauns are the more "surly" than their shoe maker cousins and mentions a few literature references where these fey are prominently in text. Unfortunately, the article has a word count of less than 400 words, so I turned to Hub Pages to learn more about Clurichauns.
Rendition of Michele McLaughlin's "The Clurichaun"
Already on Hub Pages
The most interesting articles on Clurichans that I've found so far are actually coming from Hub Pages writers! This doesn't always happen when I'm researching for writing my own hubs but is definitely the case on this topic.
I've really enjoyed some Fairy topic hubs by kittythedreamer and really like her hub, entitled, Faerie Folklore: The Leprechaun and the Clurichaun. This hub also mentions the name, "His Nibs" as another handle for the Clurichaun.
Herself by Diane Duane
I found the Clurichaun in a modern story by Diane Duane. As I started researching a few days ago for this hub (It's part of the Alphabet Challenge I'm doing September 2012), I found an Irish author, Diane Duane and her story, "Herself," available in full version on Wattpad.
Here's the page: Herself by Diane Duane
If you have time to read a short story, this one is very entertaining! The story is only 15 pages long but filled with adventure, funny stuff, a mystery and a bunch of fey folk, including clurichauns, banshees, leprechauns, dullahans (there's a Feyfolk Pub in here - check it out), and more.