celtic folktales

ABC’s of Shapeshifter Lore

S is for Selkie: Selkies (also spelled silkies, selchies; Irish/Scottish Gaelic: selchidh, Scots: selkie fowk) are mythological creatures found in Scottish, Irish, and Faroese folklore. Similar creatures are described in the Icelandic traditions. The word derives from earlier Scots selich, (from Old English seolh meaning seal). Selkies are said to live as seals in the sea but shed their skin to become human on land. The legend is apparently most common in Orkney and Shetland and is very similar to those of swan maidens.

Male selkies are described as being very handsome in their human form, and having great seductive powers over human women. They typically seek those who are dissatisfied with their life, such as married women waiting for their fishermen husbands. If a woman wishes to make contact with a selkie male, she must shed seven tears into the sea. If a man steals a female selkie’s skin she is in his power and is forced to become his wife. Female selkies are said to make excellent wives, but because their true home is the sea, they will often be seen gazing longingly at the ocean. If she finds her skin she will immediately return to her true home, and sometimes to her selkie husband, in the sea. Sometimes, a selkie maiden is taken as a wife by a human man and she has several children by him. In these stories, it is one of her children who discovers her sealskin (often unwitting of its significance) and she soon returns to the sea. The selkie woman usually avoids seeing her human husband again but is sometimes shown visiting her children and playing with them in the waves.

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If any a ya’ll knew about mythology you would know that Undertale

is very, very similar to a series of very old Celtic myths about the fight between the beautiful Tuatha dé Danann and the monstrous Fomorians, who were later driven into the sea/underground for losing the battle. 

VS. these guys

learn yourself a real life videogame, it’s fun.


Artwork by P.J. Lynch  (is soooo not mine). I’m just going to say I love anything to do with fairytales, folktales, or mythology <3 So a good 99.9% of my reading is fantasy related. So I found this wonderful collection of Celtic folktales called The Names upon the Harp By Marie Heaney and P.J. Lynch. Lynch’s illustrations are absolutely beautiful, the kind of work I wish I could do. The first piece is the Children of Lir (one of my favorite tales in general) and the second is Niamh and Oisin. 

No wonder I’m excited about Brave… anyways sorry for the spam~