Irish History – Leprechauns

http://www.yourirish.com/folklore/the-leprechauns/

You may end up being the luckiest person alive if you ever manage to catch a Leprechaun but there again it could bring more than enough trouble for what its worth.

A Leprechaun is a smart, devious little thing and who’ll do anything to escape capture even if it means turning you into a frog.  They are the exception in the Faerie realm as they are the only Faerie that has a trade other than cattle trading. They are shoe-makers.

Who Are The Leprechauns of Ireland?

As part of Irish mythology and folklore the Leprechauns are part of our faerie folk, called by some as the “wee folk”. As a cousin of the clurichaun they are known to inhabited Ireland well before the arrival of the Celts.

Small enough for one to sit comfortable on your shoulder they are very smartly dressed in small suites with waist coats, hats and buckled shoes.

As mischievous and intelligent folk they are general harmless to the general population in Ireland, although they are known to play the odd trick on farmers and local population of villages and towns.

It is said that every Leprechaun has a pot of gold, hidden deep in the Irish countryside. To protect the leprechaun’s pot of gold the Irish fairies gave them magical powers to use if ever captured by a human or an animal. Such magic an Irish leprechaun would perform to escape capture would be to grant three wishes or to vanish into thin air!

Leprechauns are also very keen musicians who play tin whistles, the fiddle and even the Irish Harp and various other Irish traditional instruments. They are known to have wild music sessions at night which in Ireland are known as Ceili’s with hundreds of Irish leprechauns gathering to dance, sing and drink.

The leprechaun is fond of drinking Poteen, moonshine, but must not be mistaken by their Irish cousins the cluricauns who are drunken creatures who love to cause chaos around Ireland at night time, a headache for us humans.

William Butler Yeats once said,

because of their love of dancing they (the Fae) will constantly need shoes

He goes on to tell the story of a woman who had been spirited away by the Faeries and had been returned seven years later minus her toes. She had danced them off!!!

The famous 1959 movie Darby O’Gill and the little people show us a great example of who the Leprechauns are and how we vision them. We’ve found a great clip of this movie that you can watch below, click on the play button to start watching.

Catching a Leprechaun

Its no easy task to catch a leprechaun as they remain very well hidden from us humans. We’ve publish a quick guide on how to catch a leprechaun, worth reading if you ever have the chance to come to Ireland.

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