Suffolk might seem the very last place to look for fairylore; after all, most of us have grown up with the idea that belief in the fairies flourishes in wild, untamed places, and specifically in the ‘Celtic’ areas of the British Isles – Scotland, Wales, Cornwall and Ireland.
Fairies were frequently blamed in Irish culture for events out of the ordinary or scenarios that were difficult to explain. An interest, curiosity, and belief in the fairies also holds an association with Irish cultural identity.
The Norwegian hulder-folk pursue Christian-folk – kidnapping their children, making them their partners and servants, and getting their help to steal food.
A nineteenth century autobiography written by the minister William Leask offers a fascinating insight into supernatural belief in contemporary Orkney.
The notion of fairy changelings, whilst dating back centuries, in many ways feels like a modern concept. That a human might be stolen away by the little folk and replaced with a worn-out fairy or stock of wood, enchanted to look like them, is reminiscent of the human-seeming aliens in Invasion of the Body Snatchers. […]