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Folktales


Fairy Midwife Of Beddgelert

In 1891 the following folk tale appeared in 'The Science of Fairy Tales; An Enquiry Into Fairy Mythology' by Edwin Sidney Hartland. It is one of a number of stories in which human midwives are needed at fairy births. Read More »

Fairy Nurse

There lived a woman in Innish Shark -- one of the group of islands on the eastern coast -- named Biddy Mannion, as handsome and likely a fisherman's wife as you would meet in a day's walk. She was tall, and fair in the face, with skin like an egg, and hair that might vie with the gloss of the raven's wing. Read More »

Fairy Ointment

Once upon a time there was, in this celebrated town [Tavistock], a Dame Somebody, I do not know her name, and as she is a real character, I have no right to give her a fictitious one. All I with truth can say, is, that she was old, and nothing the worse for that; for age is, or ought to be, held in honor as the source of wisdom and experience. Read More »

Farmer Who Lost His Way

According to ‘The Science of Fairy Tales’ (1891) by Edwin Sidney Hartland, ‘A Manx tale, which can be traced back to (George) Waldron, narrates the night adventure of a farmer who lost his way in returning home from Peel, and was led by the sound of music into a large hall where were a great number of little people feasting. Read More »

Fetching a Halter

Llyn Gwynant

The following folk tale entitled 'Fetching a Halter' appeared in 'The Welsh Fairy Book' (1908) by W. Jenkyn Thomas 'A VERY large company came together to hold a merry evening at Bwlch Mwrchan, a farmhouse close by Lake Gwynan, in Snowdonia. It was a stormy night. The wind whistled and howled in the woods, tearing the trees like matchsticks. Read More »

Ffynnon Elian (St. Elian's Well)

St Elian’s Well, like most Holy Well’s was associated with having healing properties until around 1723 when it developed a reputation for being a cursing well. Thought to have sprang forth to quench the thirst of St Elian in the 6th century, the well was a source of pilgrimage for many centuries. Read More »

Ffynnon Tegla (St Tegla’s Well)

Ffynnon Tegla, (or St Tegla’s or St Tecla’s Well) can be found on private land* near the River Alyn in Llandegla (Llandegla-yn-Iâl). Read More »

Fynnon Galchog (The Lime Well)

This natural spring is situated on flat ground on the northern side of the headland of Great Orme. It is said that it never runs dry, even in times out drought. The water from the well is also said to be beneficial in the development of strong bones and teeth in children. There is an old story linked to this well. Read More »

Geraint The Son Of Erbin

Geraint The Son Of Erbin is a tale from the Mabinogion. The following translation by Lady Charlotte Guest was published in 1877. Read More »

Goddard Crovan's Stone

Down in the valley of St. Mark's, near a little purling brook, lies the famous granite boulder, weighing between twenty and thirty tons, known by the name of Goddard Crovan's stone. It was cast into this situation one day by Goddard Crovan, son of Harold the Black, of Iceland, who lived with his termagant wife in a great castle on the top of Barrule. Read More »

Gormire Lake & White Mare Crag

Surrounded by the dense Garbutt Wood, Gormire Lake is the result of glacial activity and is one of the few natural lakes in Yorkshire. Gormire Lake has a few little known gems of folklore attached it. One tale involves a witch who was being chased across the moor. Read More »

Grassington Bargest

The following story was published in ‘English Fairy and Other Folk Tales’ by Edwin Sidney Hartland [1890], under the title ‘Billy B---‘s Adventure’ and Robert Hunt’s 'Popular Romances of the West of England' was cited. Read More »

The Green Children of Woolpit

Woolpit Village Sign

This story was told by medieval writers (Ralph of Coggestall and William of Newbridge), about the discovery of fairy children in the South of England in the twelfth century.There are two versions of the story, one placed in Suffolk and one in Norfolk, with only a small distance separating them. Read More »

Harlech and ‘The Mabinogion’

Much of the Mabinogion saga is based in the Ardudwy region of North Wales. It was from the ‘Castle Rock’ or ‘Rock of Harlech’ (where Harlech Castle now stands) that the Welsh King Bendigeidfran first saw the Irish longboats of Matholwch loom into view with their shields turned upside down as a sign of peace. Read More »

Haunted Ships

In the early 1800s Allan Cunningham described his experiences on the Solway Firth and stories around what he referred to as Blawhooly Bay. His piece below entitled 'Haunted Ships' has been reproduced many times throughout the 19th and early 20th century.
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Henry Edmund And The Fairies In Llanhilleth

There are many folk tales from Wales concerning fairies carrying people away. One such story is said to have taken place in Llanhilleth (Lanhiddel) and involved Charles Hugh, a person thought to have dealings with them. The following version appeared in British Goblins: Welsh Folk-lore, Fairy Mythology, Legends and Traditions (1881) by Wirt Sykes.
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Here Is The Story Of Llud And Llevelys

The Story of Llud and Llevelys appears in the The Mabinogion and here is the translation published by Lady Charlotte Guest (1877). Read More »

Hermitage Castle

Hermitage Castle 2

Hermitage Castle has a long and colourful history, the castle was a bastion of power in the 'debatable land': land that was exchanged between English and Scottish hands during the border wars and skirmishes. The castle is steeped in folklore and legend, and there have been reports of varied strange phenomena in recent years. Read More »

Hoghton Tower

Dating from 1560-1565, Hoghton Tower is a Grade I listed fortified manor house situated on the highest hill in the Hoghton area. The following tale by John Roby was published in his ‘Traditions of Lancashire’ in 1872. He refers to it being left to decay and by the middle of the 19th century it was derelict. Read More »

How Masakuni Regained His Sight

The following story by Richard Gordon Sith was published in his 1918 book 'Ancient Tales and Folk-lore of Japan'. SOME seventy years ago there dwelt in Kyoto a celebrated swordmaker, a native of the province of Awa, in Tokushima. Read More »

Ince Hall, Ince-in-Makerfield

Ince Hall, wigan

John Roby in his 'Traditions of Lancashire' (1872) relates the following tale which he entitled 'The Haunted Manor House', which he identifies as being Ince Hall in Wigan. As Roby acknowledges, there are a few buildings known as Ince Hall which leads to confusion when trying to identify the exactly where this tale is said to be based. Read More »

Irish Folklore

From Newgrange - a reminder of a great age of monument building and ritual - through to natural wonders such as the Giant's Causeway, Ireland is a land of legend and mystery. The landscape is full of echoes of history interwoven with a rich mythology that forms an impressive and colourful heritage. Read More »

IRISH FOLKLORE COMMISSION 1935-1970 : History, Ideology, Methodology

Irish Folklore Commission

IRISH FOLKLORE COMMISSION 1935-1970 : History, Ideology, Methodology [Micheal Briody] Between 1935 and 1970 the Irish Folklore Commission (Coimisiún Béaloideasa Éireann), under-funded and at great personal cost to its staff, assembled one of the world's largest folklore collections. Read More »

Ivar And Matilda

"In the year 1249 Reginald began to reign on the 6th May, and on the 30th May of the same month was slain by the Knight Ivar and his accomplices."--Chronicon Manniæ. There was a young and gallant knight, named Ivar, who was enamoured of a very beautiful maiden, named Matilda. He loved her ardently, and she reciprocated his affection. Read More »

Jack o' Legs

This folktale was kindly brought to our attention by Alma Oakley of Weston in Hertfordshire.

Weston churchyard is reputed to be the final resting place of the Weston Giant: Jack o' Legs. Two stones mark his grave. One is positioned at his head and another at his feet, a distance of eight feet apart. Read More »

The Dolphin Hotel, Littlehampton

Ellie and Katie along with their staff have created a warm and friendly pub with a traditional feel and traditional values. They have worked hard to turn the Dolphin into one of the safest, cleanest and most welcoming pubs around. Between them they have nearly 30 years experience in the pub and catering trade. Read More »



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