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Tag: #folklore

The Spirit of Morwen, Pilgrimage & a Witches Brew of Memories

The Spirit of Morwen, Pilgrimage & a Witches Brew of Memories

Sea dragons, merry maids, sea witches and tempestuous seas are part of the lure of the otherworldly North Cornwall coastline. Artists, writers & poets have thrived and taken inspiration from its raw, and sometimes terrifying beauty. Its wildness & unpredictability is not for everyone but for myself it is part of that westward pull that has taken me from St Kilda to Kerry, from St David’s to St Just. November storms are sometimes exhilarating, often brutal, air howling as the…

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Tales from the Deep Earth: The Descent of Giants

Tales from the Deep Earth: The Descent of Giants

Or, The Fall and Fading of Vadi… With All Hallows behind us and the ever darkening nights of winter ahead, this is the time of year to dig in and burrow down into the warmth of home and hearth and listen to, or read, stories. Our folklore and legends are full of tales of giants but what happened to them between their appearance as fearsome primeval entities and the much later blustering entities uttering fee fi fo fum? I wrote…

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The Curious Tale of The Green Children of St Martinsland

The Curious Tale of The Green Children of St Martinsland

 ‘Another wonderful thing happened in Suffolk at St Mary’s of the Wolf-pits’ wrote the English chronicler Ralph of Coggeshall. Ralph’s contemporary, William of Newburgh, wrote a slightly earlier version of this tale. It’s not known whether Ralph was using William’s account or whether he had another source. Ralph wrote extensively in the 12/13th century recording stories and anecdotes heard from visitors to his abbey in Essex. Such stories could travel great distances between medieval abbeys, treasured by the clerics that…

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Fae winds & tiny lights – Portal to the Otherworld.

Fae winds & tiny lights – Portal to the Otherworld.

Fae winds and tiny lights may sometimes alert us to subtle changes in our place of being, whether they appear in a tale or as we climb up a hillside. Either way they signal a risk of enchantment, a visit from something, or someone, supernatural and we must make shrewd and canny choices about what may happen next…. The wind bites. It is freezing cold. You walk up the path bent against the stinging rain. The threshold of the cave…

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There Be Giants In Them Blue Remembered Hills….

There Be Giants In Them Blue Remembered Hills….

The Giants of the Blue Remembered Hills of Shropshire… Ever since my small days I particularly liked folklore and legends concerning giants: wicked, kind, silly or funny giants they were all the same to me. Amongst my favourites were Jack’s adversary of ‘fee fi foe fum’ fame who fell down the bean stalk and Oscar Wilde’s ‘Selfish Giant’ whose heart was melted by a gentle child. Later I discovered there were older, more dangerous giants, movers and shapers who tore…

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Eadric Silvaticus: Legend of the Wildwood & Shropshire Folk Hero…

Eadric Silvaticus: Legend of the Wildwood & Shropshire Folk Hero…

The Eleventh-Century Saxon Thegn Who Became A Nineteenth Century Folk Hero Eadric the Wild was one of the richest thegns (high ranking Saxon noblemen) in pre-Conquest Shropshire. He held land throughout the Welsh Marches and had much to lose following the Norman conquest. We know little about Eadric. Today his deeds are largely forgotten but his name survives through legend and folklore. In 1067 Eadric submitted to William swearing fealty to him along with other Saxon noblemen, including Harold Godwinson’s…

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‘Tis merry in the hall, where beards wag all’…traditions of harvest home

‘Tis merry in the hall, where beards wag all’…traditions of harvest home

Now, there came three men out of Kent, my boys, For to plough for wheat and rye, And they made a vow and a solemn vow John Barleycorn must die. ~ Trad. Version sung by Fred Jordan, Shropshire farmworker and singer Harvest time! Once a huge event in rural communities, this was the culmination of the farming year with people coming together to bring in the barley, rye and other crops. When all was done they were rewarded for their…

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