Bendith y Mamau
Bendith Y Mamau means ‘the mothers blessing’ and is a generic name for the fairies, especially in Southern Wales.
In appearance the fairies are described as small and ugly, and are most readily identified with the Brownies, or the West Country Pixies, although they have the characterisations of most fairies.
The Bendith Y Mamau were particularly ready to steal small children and replace them with their own changelings known as Crimbils. It was thought that they needed to improve their stock with mortal blood. Mothers had to take precautions not to leave their babies unattended in fairy country.
There were various methods of retrieving mortal children from the clutches of the Bendith Y Mamau, many of them barbaric to the poor child suspected of being a Crimbil.
Calling the fairies by the flattering title of the ‘Mothers Blessing’ was thought to appease them.