Deadly Little Things in Folklore

      St Patrick’s day was an Irish tradition which was meant to mark the death of St. Patrick who was an escaped slave who brought Christianity to Ireland. This article is not about St Patrick’s day but about some of the Irish folklore about certain deadly things in Irish tradition. This article isn’t limited to Ireland so we decided to add Hawaiian folklore as well.

     The banshees are fairies who, unlike their kind relatives, are vicious creatures. Most banshees are in a state of constant agony. Banshees tend to keep away from humans but will not forgive those who enter their domain. Banshees get their name from their very loud screams. These screams can break eardrums and even skulls from miles. It is believed that anyone who hears their screams will die within a few days. Most banshees look like morbid tall pale women with ragged clothes. They are often believed to be messengers of death.

     The Dullahan (DOOL-a-han) is another fairy, but this one looks a little different than your traditional fairy. This fairy resembles a headless corpse riding a horse. He also has a whip made from a human spine. He is sometimes referred to as the headless horseman. He also carries his head in his other hand. Typically the head is rotten with a demonic grin stretching from ear to ear. The head is often said to have skin that resembles in quality to old cheese.

      The Dullahan often pulls a wagon made from dead humans(candles in skulls, spokes made from thigh bones, covering made from dead skin, etc..).Whenever the Dullahan stops riding, a person is bound to die, and when the Dullahan calls their name the person dies. The Dullahan doesn’t appreciate people looking at him when he’s on business, often throwing basins of blood, marking them to be next, or whipping their eyes out. Dullahans have a deathly fear of gold. Even a gold pin is enough to scare them away

      Changelings are ill-tempered baby fairies who are unwanted by their parents, who swap them with human babies. There are 3 reasons why fairies steal babies: to either act as a servant, or to raise as their own, or as an act of revenge or malice. Mostly during the middle ages, children with physical disabilities were often seen as changelings and were abandoned by their parents. This belief persisted throughout 1895 when Bridget Cleary was killed by her husband, who believed that she was a changeling. Most people believed changings to be mischievous creatures who had the power to bring misfortune to the household they reside in. They also believed that fairies would harm their kidnapped child if they took in the changelings.

      The Pookas are a type of fairy who are often bringers of bad or good fortune. They either help or hinder rural or marine communities. The pooka can either be of great help or can wreak havoc against its victims. This fairy lives in the mountains and is often seen as a portent of doom. The pookas are either seen as changelings with extreme malicious intent or associated with the devil.


     The next part of this article is no longer about Irish little things but about Hawaiian folklore. There are deadly little things in Hawaiian folklore so we decided to add some of them.

     If you hear a drum or a trumpet of a conch shell it’s best to walk the other way. It could be the Night Marchers. They are spiritual warriors who are said to revisit places where they fought their fiercest battles. If you think they are near you best either run or just lie down on the ground with your eyes on the ground as a sign of respect to avoid being dragged to the spiritual world.

      In Hawaiian mythology, the Menehune are little hobbit-like people who spend their days’ building or tending to their structures. They are rumored to have built some of Hawaii’s structures like the Alekoko Fishpond on Kauai and the Ancient stone shrines on Necker island. They are said to still live deep in the forest, often messing with whoever gets close to their settlements. Several sightings have been reported but none have been confirmed.

      The Mo’o are sad to be shapeshifting deities who protect the sacred ponds, rivers, and lakes of Hawaii. Often taking the form of small geckos, these spirits can control the weather and turn into dragons. They make sure enough rainfall to ensure plentiful harvests happen on the island. These beings will kill if angered, so if you want a dip in any of those lovely pools, drop a flower or branch in the water. If it gets swept away, best to go somewhere else for a swim.

      The Green lady is a horrifying-looking thing said to roam the Wahiawa gulch. With green skin covered in rotting seaweed and sharp teeth that look like daggers, she is said to be the ghost of a distraught mother who lost her child during a walk in the gulch. She often tries to kidnap other children to replace her own. Local kids are warned to stay away from the gulch lest she catches them.