"A fairy (also fey or fae or faerie; collectively, wee folk, good folk, people of peace, and other euphemisms) is the name given to an alleged metaphysical spirit or supernatural being.
The fairy is based on the fae of medieval Western European (Old French) folklore and romance. Fairies are often identified with related beings of other mythologies (see list of beings referred to as fairies). Even in folklore that uses the term "fairy," there are many definitions of what constitutes a fairy. Sometimes the term is used to describe any magical creature, including goblins or gnomes: at other times, the term only describes a specific type of more ethereal creature.
Fairies are generally described as human in appearance and as having magical powers. Their origins are less clear in the folklore, being variously the dead, or some form of angel, or a species completely independent of humans or angels. Folklorists have suggested that their actual origin lies in a conquered race living in hiding, or in religious beliefs that lost currency with the advent of Christianity. These explanations are not always mutually incompatible, and they may be traceable to multiple sources.
Much of the folklore about fairies revolves about protection from their malice, by such means as cold iron (fairies don't like iron and will not go near it) or charms of rowan and herbs, or avoiding offense by shunning locations known to be theirs. In particular, folklore describes how to prevent the fairies from stealing babies and substituting changelings, and abducting older people as well. Many folktales are told of fairies, and they appear as characters in stories from medieval tales of chivalry, to Victorian fairy tales, and up to the present day in modern literature." (Quote from wikipedia.org)
Table of Contents:
Publisher's Preface; Preface; Introduction; Oriental Romance; Persian Romance; The Peri-wife; Arabian Romance; Middle-age Romance; Fairy Land; Spenser's Faerie Queene; Eddas And Sagas; The Alfar; The Duergar; Loki And The Dwarf; Thorston And The Dwarf; The Dwarf Sword Tirfing; Scandinavia; Elves; Sir Olof In The Elve-dance; The Elf-woman And Sir Olof; The Young Swain And The Elves; Svend Faelling And The Elf-maid; The Elle-maids; Maid Vae; The Elle-maid Near Ebeltoft; Hans Puntleder; Dwarfs Or Trolls; Sir Thynne; Proud Margeret; The Troll Wife; The Altar-cup In Aagerup; Origin Of Tiis Lake; A Farmer Tricks A Troll; Skotte In The Fire; The Legend Of Bodedys; Kallundborg Church; The Hill Man Invited To The Christening; The Troll Turned Cat; Kirsten's Hill; The Troll-labourer; The Hill Smith; The Girl At The Troll Dance; The Changeling; The Tile-stove Jumping Over The Brook; Departure Of The Trolls From Vendsyssel; Svend Faelling; The Dwarf's Banquet; Nisses ; The Nis Removing ; The Penitent Nis; The Nis And The Boy; The Nis Stealing Corn; The Nis And The Mare; The Nis Riding; The Nisses In Vosborg; Necks, Mermen And Mermaids; The Power Of The Harp; Duke Magnus And The Mermaid; Northern Islands; Iceland; Feroes; Shetland; Gioga's Son; The Mermaid Wife; Orkneys; Isle Of Rugen; Adventures Of John Dietrich; The Little Glass Slipper; The Wonderful Plough; The Lost Bell; The Black Dwarfs Of Granitz.; Germany; Dwarfs; The Hill-man At The Dance; The Dwarf's Feast; The Friendly Dwarfs'; Wedding-feast Of The Little People; Smith Riechert; Dwarfs Stealing Corn; Journey Of Dwarfs Over The Mountain; The Dwarfs Borrowing Bread; The Changeling; The Dwarf Husband; Inge Of Rantum; The Wild-women; The Oldenburg Horn; The Kobolds ; Hinzelmann ; Hodeken; King Goldemar; The Heinzelmanchen; Nixes; The Peasant And The Waterman; The Water-smith; The Working Waterman; The Nix Labour; Switzerland; Gertrude And Rosy; The Chamois Hunter; The Dwarfs On The Tree; Curiousity Punished; The Rejected Gift; The Wonderful Little Pouch; Aid And Punishment; The Dwarf In Search Of Lodging; Great Britain; Englan
About the Author:
"Thomas Keightley (1789 - 1872) was a historian, educated at Trinity College, Dublin, who wrote works on mythology and folklore, and at the request of Dr Thomas Arnold of Rugby, a series of text-books on English, Greek, and other histories. His History of Greece was translated into modern Greek. Among his other books are Fairy Mythology (1850, 1870), and Mythology of Ancient Greece and Italy, and a work on Popular Tales and their transmission from one country to another" (Quote from wikipedia.org)
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