Fairies - When to see

Folklore states that in Ireland at night you can often see the hills inhabited by Fairies shining of a myriad of sparkling lights . Sometiems the hill rises up on columns , revealing the lively light of the Fairies who slowly move togheter towars another hill. It happens traditionally during Lammas  period,expecially on August the 7th. By tradition the best time for seeing fairies is the twighlight and midnight when the moon is full. There are a number of dates which hold particular significance with regard to those who wish to find (or avoide) the fay.

March 15: Ides of March A day holding no significance to humans, it is the fesival of river nymphs and water faeries. Swim at your own risk.
March 25: Lady Day
May Day
June 24: Midsummer Day
August 7: Lammas Tide - On this date faerie hills and dwellings are revealed and rise above the ground on great pillars. The homes of the fay are set ablaze with great light as they go trooping off to another nearby hill.
September 29: Gwynn ap Nudd - On this day the Lord of Faerie opens the doors that stand between our world and the faerie realm. Although a mortal may wander into the faerie realm, he must be careful to leave before the doors close once again.
October 31 : Haloween
November 8: Gwynn ap Nudd - Once again the Lord of faerie allows mortals to take a glimpse at the world of the fay.
November 11: Hollantide - This is the traditional date during which the Hillmen or Hogmen move their homes. Since they are some of the most feared of Manx Faeries, most folks will avoid leaveing their homes on this night. This day is also Lunantishees, the faerie festifal of the spirits who gaurd blackthorne trees, a sacred plant to faeries.
December 24 : Christmas Day

Even in the 20th century, there are sincere, eye witness accounts of little men all dressed in green, and it is on these, and on accounts of former centuries, that the case for the belief in fairies must rest.

Bessie Dunlop’s fairy
‘. . . he was an honest well elderly man, gray bearded, and had a gray coat with Lombard sleeves of the old fashion . . . a black bonnet on his head . . . and a white wand in his hand.’ From the trial records of bessie Dunlop, of Lyne in Ayrshire, burnt in 1576 for witchcraft and communing with fairies.

A visit to the Downie-hills
‘. . . I was in the Downie Hills, and got meat from the queen of the Faerie, more than I could eat. The Queen of the Faerie is brawly clothed in white linens, and in white and brown clothes ; and the King of the faerie is a braw man, well favoured, and broad faced. There were elf bulls routing and skoyling up and down there, and affrighted me.’ From the confession made in 1662 by Isabel Gowdie, a farmers wife and witch from Morayshire.
Brown women 3 ft high

‘. . . the two that constantly attended myself, appear’d both in Womens Habit, they being of a brown complexion, and about Three Foot in Stature; they had both black, loose Network Gowns, tyed with a black Sash about their Middles, and within the Network appear’d a Gown of Golden Colour, with somewhat a Light striking thro’ it . . . they had white Linen Caps on, with Lace on them, about three Fingers breadth.’ From John Beaumont’s description of his experiences with fairies, published in 1705.

The fairy Rade
‘. . . A leam o’ light was dancing owre them, mair bonnie than moonshine:they were a wee,wee fowk,wi’ green scarfs on . . . They rade on braw wee whyte nags, wi’ unco lang swooping tails, an’
manes hung wi’ whustles that the win’ played on. This, an’ their tongues when they sang, was like the soun’ of a fae awa Psalm.’ Described in the early 1800’s by an old women from Dumfriesshire.

Manx fairies
‘. . .I saw come in twos and threes a great crowd of little beings smaller than Tomb Thumb and his wife. All of them who appeared like soldiers, were dressed in red. they moved back and forth amid the circle of light, as they formed into order like troops drilling.’ Described in 1911 by Mr. T. C. Kermode, from Peel, Isle of Man.

All Dressed in Green
‘. . . When we were on holiday in Cornwall, my daughter and I came down a winding lane, and all of a sudden there was a small green man - all in green with a pointed hood and ears. We both saw him . . . we were cold with terror and ran from the ferry below. A 20th-century description by a women from Shropshire.

A fairy guide
‘. . .It was on the Berkshire Downs, and we’d lost our way, and didn’t know which track to take. When I looked around there was a small man in green standing at my elbow. He said “You take that one;you’ll be all right.” Then he didn’t disappear, but he just wasn’t there anymore.’ Described in 1962 by a Somerset farmers wife.