Presentation on theme: "FAIRIES and MAGIC S. Monnier Clay Ph.D.. Fairies (from old French faerie) were a type of mythological being or legendary creature, a form of spirit, often."— Presentation transcript:
FAIRIES and MAGIC S. Monnier Clay Ph.D.
Fairies (from old French faerie) were a type of mythological being or legendary creature, a form of spirit, often described as metaphysical, supernatural or preternatural. Fairies resemble various beings of other mythologies, though even folklore that uses the term fairy offers many definitions: Sometimes the term describes any magical creature, including goblins or gnomes; at other times, the term only describes a specific type of more ethereal creature.
Characteristics: Fairies are generally described as human in appearance and having magical powers. Much of the folklore about fairies revolves around protection from their malice. Although in modern culture they are often depicted as young, sometimes winged, humanoids of small stature, they originally were depicted much differently: tall, radiant, angelic beings or short, wizened trolls. Diminutive fairies of one kind or another have been recorded for centuries, but occur alongside the human-sized beings; these have been depicted as ranging in size from very tiny up to the size of a human child. Wings, while common in Victorian and later artwork of fairies, are very rare in the folklore; even very small fairies flew with magic, sometimes flying on branches or the backs of birds. A common feature of the fairies is the use of magic to disguise appearance.
The Magic Fairy Wand In the imagined world, wands have immense power. The magic wand is most commonly associated with the mace, sceptre, trident, and crozier as symbolic items. They have been owned by fairies, witches, wizards, sorcerer and sorceresses. Magic wands have defeated enemies and conquered worlds through strength and sorcery. They have cast spells, unleashed evil and aided the hero/heroine. Wands have cast their magical charm on children and adults readers alike since stories began.
Origin of fairies: -Dead: One popular belief was that they were the dead, or some subclass of the dead, or that they were spirits of the dead. -Elementals: Another view held that the fairies were an intelligent species, distinct from humans and angels. -Demoted angels: A third belief held that they were a class of "demoted" angels. -Demons: A fourth belief was the fairies were devils entirely. This belief became much more popular with the growth of Puritanism. The hobgoblin, once a friendly household spirit, became a wicked goblin. Dealing with fairies was in some cases considered a form of witchcraft and punishable by death. Humans: A less-common belief was that the fairies were actually humans. Pagan deities: One common theme found among the Celtic nations describes a race of diminutive people who had been driven into hiding by invading humans.
Fairies in literature and legends: Fairies were noted for their mischief and malice. Some pranks were ascribed to them. Changelings: A considerable amount of lore about fairies revolves around changelings, fairy children left in the place of stolen human babies. Fairies appeared in medieval romances as one of the beings that a knight errant might encounter. Images of fairies have appeared as illustrations, often in books of fairy tales, as well as in photographic-based media and sculpture. (Especially during the Victorian Era.)
The traditional characteristics of fairies are depicted in European literature in such works as Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream Mab; The Faerie Queene by Edmund Spenser; Contes de ma mère l'oie (Mother Goose's Fairy Tales) by Charles Perrault; Kinder-und Hausmärchen, known in English as Grimm's Fairy Tales, by the brothers Jacob Ludwig Karl Grimm and Wilhelm Karl Grimm; a fairy-tale series by Andrew Lang, for example, The Blue Fairy Tale Book and The Red Fairy Tale Book; collections of Irish stories such as Fairy Legends and Traditions of the South of Ireland by Thomas Crofton Croker (1798–1854) and Irish Fairy Tales by William Butler Yeats. C
Fairies in various traditions
Celtic and Irish Fairies
The Scottish Fairy The Scottish fairies bear little resemblance to the kindly fairy-folk of Ireland. By way of explanation: the Irish fairy-folk, the leprechaun and the "leavnin sidhe," for instance are all Gaels - the kindliest and the most hospitable race in the world. But the Scottish fairies are Picts. Not all of them are bad, of course. On the contrary, some of them are quite good-natured, and quite prepared to be helpful. But their offers of help should be politely refused or, if accepted, it should be with great caution. In those limited areas where the Vikings settled, the fairies are sometimes known as Trolls.
Fairies in Brittany The few fées or fairies of Brittany almost always appear in folk-lore as corrigans (dwarfs), or as little old women. The corrigans seem to descend from ancient Druidesses, and they are Especially malicious toward celibate Catholic priests. It was thought that the fées were spirits who came to predict some unexpected event in the family. They came especially to console orphans who had very unkind step-mothers. The Breton Celts did not believe in a separation between the living and the dead. All alike inhabit this world, the one being visible, the other invisible. Though seers can at all times behold the dead, on November Eve (La Toussaint); and no peasant would think of questioning their existence.
Russian Snow Fairies
The Fairy Godmother -A fairy godmother is a fairy with magical powers who acts as a mentor or parent to someone. -They are found in tales of Northern Europe. -Fairy godmothers are not common in fairy tales, but they were made popular because of the fairy godmothers in Sleeping Beauty and in Cinderella. Another Fairy godmother is Mama Odie the 197-year-old, blind Voodoo lady of the Bayou who appears in The Princess and the Frog. She helps Princess Tiana and Prince Naveen find what is really important. -The fairy godmother acts in a manner atypical of fairies in actual folklore belief; they are preoccupied with the character and fortunes of their human proteg é es, whereas fairies in folklore were concerned with their own interests.
The Wicked Fairy Godmother The wicked fairy godmother, a figure rare in fairy tales. However, she appears in Sleeping Beauty, and in the ballet derived from it. Anonymous in her first appearance, she was later named Carabosse, or Maleficent.
The Modern Fairy Godmother In Shrek 2, the fairy godmother turns out to be a conniving, crooked businesswoman (with a personality rather like that of the Stepmother in Cinderella), who is quite willing to resort to blackmail and/or murder to further her own interests. The pure reason for helping princesses gain a happily ever after with Prince Charming is the fact that Prince Charming is actually the Fairy Godmother's son, and through the marriage he will gain the throne.
Fairies in Sleeping Beauty In a magical land of fairies and witchcraft, a good King and Queen conceive a child. To celebrate the childs birth, they organize a grand christening, inviting all the fairies in the land to bestow a gift upon the new Princess. However, the christening is interrupted by an old fairy, who wasnt invited. Instead of a gift, the evil fairy puts a curse on Beauty that on her 18th Birthday, she will prick her finger on the needle of a spinning wheel and die. A good fairy manages to reduce the curse so that instead of dying, Beauty will sleep for a hundred years. So the Princess grows up, always confined to within the Palace walls for her own safety.
Flora, Fauna and Merryweather, known collectively as the Three Good Fairies, first appeared in Disneys Sleeping Beauty. They are charged with protecting Princess Aurora from Maleficent. Hiding her in a cottage deep in the forest, they assumed the roles of her mortal "aunties" and for 16 years hide her true identity from her. When Maleficent's evil enchantment falls upon their beloved "niece", the Three Good Fairies put the whole kingdom to sleep and enlist the help of Aurora's true love, Prince Phillip to put an end to the wicked Maleficent and release the sleeping princess with love's first kiss.
1865: Cinderella and her fairy godmother Cinderella: The Fairy Godmother is a good-hearted fairy and Cinderella's godparent.
Bibliography D. L. Ashliman, Fairy Lore: A Handbook (Greenwood, 2006) Brian Froud and Alan Lee, Faeries, (Peacock Press/Bantam, New York, 1978) Ronan Coghlan, Handbook of Fairies (Capall Bann, 2002) Lizanne Henderson and Edward J. Cowan, ''Scottish Fairy Belief: A History'' (Edinburgh, 2001; 2007) C. S. Lewis, The Discarded Image: An Introduction to Medieval and Renaissance Literature (1964) Patricia Lysaght, The Banshee: the Irish Supernatural Death Messenger (Glendale Press, Dublin, 1986) Peter Narvaez, The Good People, New Fairylore Essays (Garland, New York, 1991) Diane Purkiss, Troublesome Things: A History of Fairies and Fairy Stories (Allen Lane, 2000)