The witch transformed into a hare is an old folk tale found across many parts of Europe. In Wales, the story appears to have a connection to Saint Melangell, the protector of ŵyn Melangell (‘Melangell’s lambs’), the traditional Welsh name for hares.
The Fairy Bride Legend is a type of folk tale that’s found in many parts of Britain and Ireland. But how should we interpret these types of story, what do they tell us about the folk who told and re-told them across the centuries?
The story of Llyn y Fan Fach is one of the most famous Welsh fairy tales, and one of the best known examples of a Fairy Bride legend. But what does it mean and what folk beliefs could be behind it?
The Fairy Rings, Cylchoedd y Tylwyth Teg, are a common feature of Welsh fairy tales, especially those concerning the disappearance of mortals taken up in the fairy dances. But where do the mortals go and how do some of them manage to come back?
The Welsh storytelling tradition contains what we could call teaching tales, the most famous being The Four Branches of the Mabinogi. But for how long did this tradition persist? Can we find late signs of it in folk tales about the Tylwyth Teg?
Changelings – fairy children exchanged for human infants – are part of several folk traditions across Europe. In Wales, they are the Plant Cyfnewid. What is the origin of this belief?
The Tylwyth Teg (Welsh Fair Folk) have many attributes that connect them to the earlier supernatural beings of the Mabinogi, attributes that also persisted into the modern era.
The modern folklore regarding Gwyn ap Nudd depicts him as a wild psychopomp, hunting the souls of the dead with his magical hounds on Calan Gaeaf. But how old is this aspect of Gwyn’s myth?
This is the first in a series of talks on Welsh folklore. Gwyn ap Nudd is one of the clearest examples of a Welsh folk character who has remained largely unchanged during the last millennia. We begin with his exploits as a mischievous spirit bothering travellers out in the wilds.
Following on from a question about patriarchy and The Three Romances of the Mabinogi, here’s an outline of an old problem that most of us will fall into at some point or another.