“The neck! The neck! The neck!” – Kern Dollies, Corn Spirits & Harvest Home

Incorporating folklore can add authenticity, richness and whole new layers of meaning to historical fiction. Novelist Melissa Harrison explores how traditional practices and beliefs around the harvest informed her creative process when she was writing her new book, All Among the Barley

‘Prick Song’: A Tale from Zoe Gilbert

The first tale of Zoe Gilbert’s wonderful novel, Folk, now out in paperback. Read more about the novel here. Listen, for the beat that runs through the gorse maze. It is an early twilight, the opening between last sun and first star, the door of the day closing until, soon, night will seal it shut. There […]

Nature Folklore for Children: Capturing Their Curiosity and Inspiring Awe

I have always especially loved nature folklore. It provides such a beautiful glimpse into how people use signs from nature as a way to navigate daily life. It reveals how attuned people used to be to the natural world and the ebb and flow of the seasons. Spotting certain animals or birds came to be associated with good or bad fortune; plants and flowers were used as cures; and stories of fantastical creatures, such as fairies and elves, were told to account for unexplained events.

Collectable Mermaids and the Myth of the Merrow

The early sirens, the ones Odysseus encountered, were not fish at all but bird-women, but they had those great siren qualities – bewitching songs and the will to lure the unwitting to a bad end.

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