Yorkshire Legends and Traditions of Wells England Springs and wells of water have, in all lands and in all ages, been greatly valued, and in some regarded with a feeling of veneration little, if at all, short of worship. They have yielded their treasure to the sustenance and refreshment of man and beast, as age after age of the world's history has passed along, and have been centers around which village story and gossip have gathered for generation after generation.
Little wonder, therefore, is it that legends and traditions abound concerning them. These are often extremely local, and therefore little known. The names alone, however, suggest much. The memory of the mythical gods, satyrs, and nymphs of the ancient heathen times lingers in a few, as in Thors-kil or Thors-well, in the parish of Burnsall; and in the almost universal declaration -- by which not over-wise parents seek to deter children from playing in dangerous proximity to a well -- that at the bottom, under the water, dwells a mysterious being, usually named Jenny Green-teeth or Peg-o'-the-Well, who will certainly drag into the water any child who approaches too near to it.
The tokens of medieval reverence for wells are abundant. The names of the saints to whom the wells were dedicated yet cling to them.
Helen's Well very numerous , St. Margaret's Well at Burnsall, St. Bridget's Well near Ripon, St. Mungo's Well at Copgrove, St. John's Well at Beverley, St. Alkelda's Well at Middleham, etc.
Water Spirit Legends 1
Whitaker remarks that the wells of Craven, which bear the names of saints, are invariably presided over by females, as was the case with wells under the pagan ritual, in which nymphs exclusively enjoyed the same honor. Return to the table of contents.
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Water Demons Scotland In many of the deep pools of the streams and rivers guardian-demons were believed to reside, and it was dangerous to bathe in them. Sometimes, when a castle or mansion was being sacked, a faithful servant or two contrived to rescue the plate chest, and to cast it into a deep pool in the nearest stream. On one occasion a diver was got to got to the bottom of such a pool to fetch up the plate of the neighboring castle. He dived, saw the plate chest, and was preparing to lift it, when the demon ordered him to go to the surface at once, and not to come back.
At the same time the demon warned him that, if he did come back, he would forfeit his life. The diver obeyed.
When he reached the bank he told what he had seen, and what he had heard. By dint of threats and promises of large reward, he dived again. In a moment or two afterwards his heart and lungs rose and floated on the surface of the water. They had been torn out by the demon of the pool.
At the time of Burkhard, the twenty-seventh archbishop of Magdeburg, who served from the year to the year , this lake was filled with spirits and ghosts. They often frightened the fishermen and boatsmen, and caused them much harm, drowning and causing the miserable death of many a man.
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When Archbishop Burkhard, a very pious and God-fearing man, heard of this, he went to the lake with great sincerity, and blessed the place, driving the evil spirits away, and they have never been seen there again. Translated by D. It is rich with fish, but its water is cloudy, and one cannot fish there.
Retrieved 26 February MidTown Publishing Inc. Retrieved 5 December Fairy-like beings in folklore. See also Category List of beings referred to as fairies.
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Sticking to the land-based version, what does a fairy look like? A: In traditional belief, they could be any size between 2 inches and 14 feet. The most typical range would be about 8 inches up to 4 foot. And they would often be robust, vigorous and masculine, rather than dainty and passively feminine. Do not look for wings, and bear in mind they could look exactly like an ordinary human — a trait which allowed for some impressive Fairy Frauds, from people pretending to be the King or Queen of the Fairies.
A: In the 20th century a Commander T.
Powell was fly-fishing in Wales when he was accosted from the bank by an odd little elderly man in bright-green trousers, calling out about the trout. Glancing away for a few seconds to deal with a fish, Powell turned back to find that the man had disappeared — from completely open ground, and as if by magic. With fairies of a larger size, this ability to disappear in a flash seems to be a useful marker. Seemingly authentic sightings often have them looking odd, misshapen, ugly, or angry — not the kind of people your Victorian painters would have asked to sit for them.
In Ireland especially these were treated with intense fear and reverence.
Almost no one would dare cut down a fairy tree usually a type of thorn … If a fairy path ran through your house, you might throw open front and back doors at a certain time, to let the fairies through. Could fairies hearken back to an earlier race of men? Modern scholars sometimes now make a sharp distinction between fairies and elves.
Around the end of the 19th century there arose a theory that the fairies were, in a sense, real people.