Leprechauns, goblins et al

There are many other little people, as well as elves and gnomes, that are said to routinely interact with humans in our reality. There are brownies, dwarfs, imps, sprites, merman and maids, sylphs, undines, asrai (aquatic fairy), selkies, pixie etc etc. They all seem to be considered fairies, but although they are all held to have magical powers, the way they interact with humans and the environment seems totally different.

Classifying them is difficult. Are they races of beings that were here before us, just different branches of evolution? Or are they part of the classification of Devas which are beings made of pure spirit, who may appear to humans in a certain form, but are here, like the Angels  who help us, but to help the ecosystem of the Earth to help humanity? There are those who seem not always to be working in the interests of humanity or the Earth. Two of which I have described below.


Perhaps one of the best known in our culture, besides the beings just traditionally known as fairies, are the leprechauns living in Ireland. There is a whole leprechaun industry around the myths and legends of these little men. These are classified as fairies but, unlike some fairies, don’t seem to be considered to be nature spirits. As fairies they do have some magical powers, and are said to be descendants of a group of magical beings serving under the Gaelic goddess Danu, long before humans inhabited Ireland. Irish fairies are legendarily not like the sweet flower fairies though they can be nasty, capricious creatures whose magic might delight you one day and kill you the next if you displeased them.

Usually depicted dressed in green with pointed hats (although it used to be red), they are known for their abilities as cobblers and their hoarding of gold, which can be found at the end of the rainbow.  Today they seem to be mischievous rather than malevolent. They can be caught and may grant 3 wishes, or gold, in order to escape. They often need to be appeased to get on their good sides.


Goblins are creatures, usually considered monstrous, found in mainly European stories from the middle ages. What they look like and what they do depends on the country of origin. They are always depicted as small, grotesque and greedy, especially for gold and jewellery. They have magical abilities and can be mischievous or malevolent. Like elves, the problem with any serious research on them, is that they are heavily fictionised in gaming and fantasy books, where they are usually the bad guys.

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