Archaic Living Religion: Mythology’s Residence in the Dark Hinterland of the Collective Psyche

This piece aims to present the inter-connection between folk tales and myths, and psychology. I then show how this connection is used in psychotherapy and helps towards personal development.

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Rashiecoats: A Traditional Scottish Story

Here is my version of Rashiecoats a traditional Scottish story, about a princess who came from a land of towers near a marshland, a long, long time ago...

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Lived Folklore in the Fairy Census

The Fairy Census: 2014-2017 is a collection of modern fairy sightings. These have been collected through an internet questionnaire via radio, magazines, newspapers and, crucially, social media. Five hundred men, women and…

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The Pit of Ghosts: Exploring the Haunted Mines of Victorian Wales

Welsh miners of the nineteenth century held strong superstitions in supernatural elements, which they believed existed deep in the mines.

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The Countryman Magazine: On Sanctuary, and a Medieval Boy Band…

This month, we're delighted that the wonderful folks over at The Countryman magazine have kindly featured #FolkloreThursday in their January edition! 

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Want to Join the #FolkloreThursday Team?

Since #FolkloreThursday started back in June 2015, we have just grown and grown! We began with the idea that we’d love to create a wondrous folklore community, and we’ve done just that:…

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Italy’s Pagan Santa Claus: The Story of La Befana, the Christmas Witch

Who is la Befana, the Italian Christmas witch?

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New Year Celebrations: Herrings in Bonnets at Hogmanay?

In a strange old custom, the Dundee dressed herring is dressed in a crepe paper skirt and bonnet combination in bright colours, tied to ribbons, and carried through the streets and into…

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On Gifts and Giving: International Folklore Life Hacks for the Christmas Season

It seems valuable lessons can be learned from Ukrainian, Russian, and Ingush folktales. Here are Daria Kulesh’s top tips from folklore.

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Erotic Folktales: The Yule Buck and the Girl

Simon Hughes examines erotic folktales—a less well known, and often censored, area of folklore—and presents a self-translated example from his work.

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Spilled Salt: Bad Luck or Protection Against Dark Side?

The exploration into the origins of common superstitions continues with spilling salt as a bad omen.

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British Legends — The Founding of Britain: Brutus of Troy and the Prophecy of Diana

Brutus of Troy was a legendary Trojan exile who some medieval chroniclers claimed was responsible for the founding of Britain.

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The Nordic Goat of Christmas Past and Present

He used to bleat. Walking upright, a goat the size of a grown man would tramp in from the cold with a sack hanging over his shoulder, bleating.

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An Inuit Folk Tale: The Blind Boy and the Loon

Children's author Angela McAllister presents "The Blind Boy And The Loon", a folk tale from her new book "A World Full of Animal Stories".

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Winter Folklore: The Creatures of Christmas

From the animals that witnessed the Nativity, to the robins on our greetings cards and Santa’s reindeer, the creatures of Christmas truly animate the magic of the festive season.

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British Legends: The Mabinogion – The Dream of Macsen Wledig

The Dream of Macsen Wledig from the Mabinogion tells the story of how the Emperor of Rome experienced a dream in which he travelled to Wales.

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Gallows, Germs, or God: Why is it Bad Luck to Put Shoes on the Table?

According to some, leaving shoes on the table is a harbinger of death. This originates from the practice of honouring fatalities in the mining industry.

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Dog Folklore: Companion Dogs as Seers, Healers, and Fairy Steeds

When considering dog folklore, we generally think of those stories which feature the Grimm, the Gytrash, or other sinister black dogs roaming the moors in the North of England. But there is…

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Curiouser and Curiouser: How the 100 Year Old Cottingley Fairies Hoax Just Got Better

Hidden in plain sight for a century, two recently reappraised Cottingley Fairy photographs bring a whole new dimension to the celebrated hoax.

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Family Folklore: How Stories Make Us Who We Are

In the telling of stories, the ghosts of our families still walk, and create a sense of belonging to a vast network of stories that teach us who we are.

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Peterborough: Folklore from a Neglected Corner of England

The city of Peterborough in the east of England and its surrounding region is one of the few English areas that has not previously benefitted from a thorough study of its folklore.

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Grotesques, Green Men and Glorious Angels

The Church of St Mary and St David in Kilpeck in Herefordshire has been a centre for Christian worship since the 12th century, and today is a place of pilgrimage. 

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Dragon Legends: Myth or Half-Truth?

Dragons play a popular role in legend, Where might their origins have begun, and can we see parallels between them and other creatures, mythical and real?

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Women on a Quest: The Hawaiian Saga of Pele the Volcano Goddess and Hiiaka

The saga of Pele's youngest sister Hiiaka is a heroic quest across the Hawaiian archipelago. It conveys a perspective of women throughout Hawaiian culture.

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Smuggler Legends: Owlers, Woolers & Restless Ghosts

Smuggling. The word has been entwined with romantic delusions and depictions for many years. However, in reality this could not be further from the truth. From concepts of men in fancy clothes…

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This, That and the Other: Folklore of the Three Realms

A lot of folklore is concerned with other realms. Worlds that exist apart, yet overlap or interact to varying degrees. It is this aspect that aligns many features of myth, folklore and…

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Folklore Gift Ideas for Christmas

We've started our Christmas shopping early here at #FolkloreThursday, and we thought we'd share some of the wonderful folkloric gifts we've come across on the way!

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The Top 3 Japanese Ghosts

19th century Japan was obsessed with ghost stories. These stories are so influential that they serve as direct inspiration for today’s horror films.

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The Scottish Play and the Welsh Wizard: Witches in Punch Cartoons

From its beginnings in the 1840s until the late twentieth century it was Shakespeare’s Three Witches who inspired the majority of cartoons featuring witches in Punch.

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Skeleton Folklore: “I Can Feel it in My Bones”

Icy Sedgwick explores the folklore, beliefs, and superstitions associated with the human skeleton in traditional and contemporary cultures across the world.

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Kulning, An Ancient Scandinavian Herding Call

Kulning is a high pitched singing technique used by women to communicate with animals and over great distances, most common from 1500 to 1800 in Scandinavia.

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Folkore of Wales: The Skeleton Tree, Derwen Ceubren yr Ellyll

Derwen Ceubren yr Ellyll, which means “The Hollow Oak, Haunt of Demons” or “The Blasted Oak of Spirits” was a real tree. Its story is dark and terrifying.

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King Arthur, the Mabinogion and Wales’ Legendary Landscapes

The National Library of Wales discuss their exhibition 'Arthur and Welsh Mythology', and how Welsh folklore is engrained in its legendary landscape.

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Sky Goddesses, Spring Mechanisms, or Sprites: Why Is it Bad Luck to Open an Umbrella Inside?

Madeline D'Este explores the possible origins behind the common belief that the act of opening an umbrella indoors invites bad luck.

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5 Lesser Known Monsters In North American Folklore

Here, we catch up with five “lesser known” North American monsters...

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Philippine Folktales and Legends: Catalina of Dumaguete

Even the wild people who once roamed the remote mountains spoke of Catalina with love. As the wind howled they would tell the story of Catalina of Dumaguete.

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The Skull-Faced Bishop: The Horrific Image of One Vancouver Island Ghost

Bishop Seghers’ apparition is one of Vancouver Island’s most terrifying visages.

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The Leprechaun: Harmless Hoarder or Malevolent Miser?

Some say that, like all fairykind, leprechauns came from the Otherworld, the land of the gods. Others report that leprechauns evolved from fallen angels.

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Folklore of the Welsh Lakes: Reflecting on Faerie Brides, Drowned Towns, and the Otherworld

There are may lakes scattered around Wales, each with their own unique characteristics and history. Many also have the most amazing legends and folklore.

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Folklore: To Define or Not To Define? Why is This a Question?

Dr. Lynne S. McNeill explains what folklore is, and what folklorists do.

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