Folktale Blog

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Dec. 02, 2017 - Erin's collected thoughts from the Nov. 28 meeting

Please scroll through my drawings (below).  The first is a step into cryptozoology with the Phoenix.  I discussed how this majestic fabulous bird was found in stories from various cultures.  It has a description in ancient China (Dennys, N., The Folklore of China, 1876, p.112) as being a sort of cross between a peacock and a pheasant, with the neck of a tortoise and the beak of a sparrow.  It's in many rebirth stories from Egypt, to China, and then Europe (Nigg, J., The Phoenix, 2016, frontispiece and throughout).

Next was the tale Tracy brought- Jenny Greenteeth.  She will elaborate on this in her post, I'm sure, but basically Jenny was a fairy who dragged children into the water to their deaths.  She had seaweed hair and eyes of a frog, and hideous green teeth.

Finally, we have Coyote, as told by Jayne from Native American history, and also found in First Nations stories.  In the picture I (tried to) draw, Coyote was fighting with Tar.  Coyote is also involved in creation stories.  

-E. Kourelis

Erin KourelisComment
Scottish Fairies

What is a Scottish fairy?

Fairies in Scotland are "the human form divine" but in miniature (MacGregor, A.).  They shoot fairy arrows called "saighdean sithe," which have barbed, yellow flint arrowheads.  There are detailed descriptions in Alexander MacGregor's "Highland Superstitions."  The original text from MacGregor can be found in the 3rd volume of The Celtic Magazine, from the 1870s.

Erin Kourelis
O Saci-Pererê

Here's another sketch of Saci.  (This one is from Erin, the other one is from Tracy.)  Saci is basically the one who does all of the minor mischief in the house when no one is looking- like mixing everything in the silverware drawer, or riling up the animals in the barn.  He's usually wearing a red hat and appears from a dust-devil.

Erin Kourelis
O Saci-Pererê

Who is Saci?

Saci is an impish boy with a missing leg.  He's from the folk stories of Brazil, a story brought to Brazil from African slaves.  According to his stories (see the writings of Monteiro Lobato (in Portuguese).  Giant thank-you to Tracy who introduced Saci at the October monthly meeting and translated some of Lobato's stories about Saci :)

Erin Kourelis