feature greatly in Scottish lore and there are many beliefs and
stories that speak of these beings. What follows below is a brief
description of some of the Scottish faeries and how a witch can
contact them and how to use them in rituals. Not all can be used
in rituals since some are dangerous to humans. All faeries can
be contacted in the Otherworld and some are found on this world
but always approach with caution.
Faeries are very sensitive beings and have their feelings hurt
easily. In Scotland the word for faery is sith, and is pronounced
"shee" just as in the Irish Sidhe. Scottish witches
are known for pouring libations of milk on stones to the faery
folk during rituals. Scottish Faeries live in burghs just like
the Irish faeries. As in Ireland one can hear music come these
hillocks at night when one is out. Scottish names for faeries
include the Still Folk, People of Peace, The Silent Moving Folk,
Pixies, The Wee Folk, and Prowlies.
Ashrays: These faeries live in water. They are both male
and female and have the appearance of a 20 year old human but
they are very ancient. They have whitish, almost translucent skin.
They are most active at night and they cannot live on land. If
they are touched by sunlight they melt into a rainbow pool of
water. They are very rarely seen today and if they are seen at
all it is underwater. Their magical and ritual help is unknown
and approach with caution if in their underwater world because
their intent towards humans is unknown.
Angus: In Scotland they are called Cu Sith which means "faery
dog". It is a large black dog with yellow eyes and sharp
fangs who roams the Scottish countryside showing himself to those
who will die in a fortnight. When showing himself to bring his
message of dying he will cross your path, jump in front of you,
then turn and growl. Contact is not advised with this faery and
he can provide no ritual help.
The Boobrie is a waterbird about a foot high that swims in or
out of the water. Their element is water. They live in the waters
off the coast of Scotland. It has black feathers and a 3 foot
long bill that it uses to catch fish when meat is unavailable.
It has large, sharp claws that resemble mangled human hands. They
are most active at night and they like to prey on sheep and cattle
being transported on ships. It can shapechange into a horse and
run along the top of the water and sailors often call the ghost
horse. This faery is water bound and cannot live on land. If one
really wants to contact a boobrie then do so from the safety of
the shore. Call to it and offer it a piece of meat. It is not
know how it can help in a ritual or spell since it is a selfish
scavenger and there are more reliable faeries to call upon for
aid who will be willing to help.
These benevolent faeries are found in Scotland and were brought
to the New World by Scottish immigrants. Their element is earth.
They are also known as House Brownies and are the most kind and
benevolent faerie one could hope to meet. They appear as very
small male dwarves with coal black eyes. They wear suits of green,
blue, or brown with little felt caps. They have pointed ears and
long nimble fingers. They are most active at night at any time
of the year. They look for deserving homes filled with humble
and gracious folk. They do not like cats and will steer clear
of homes that have them. They like the attic, woodshed, or cellar
of a human home best. Their favorite foods are milk, honey, ale,
and cake. They help around the house and farm with the chores.
They do not tolerate lying, cheating, and misers. You can invite
them in by leaving food out for them and be best contacted on
the astral plane in Faeryland.
These are small faeries that appear as small men. They are known
as the Herding Boys. They wear small red hats, which may be inverted
flower caps and are excellent shapeshifters. They are mischievous
and sometimes border on mean, and they like to torment animals
for fun. They are most active in the summer. They play pranks
on shepherds and herds and love to tease the animals. Contact
with them is not advised. Their element is earth.
These faeries are found in all Celtic countries and due to immigrants
from the Old World they are now found all over the world. Their
element is air. They are tree dwelling spirits. They are playful
creatures who seem totally androgynous, though they are always
referred to as female. Dryads seem open to human contact but are
very capricious. They are active all year particularly at Esbats.
They prefer willow trees but are found in all the 13 Celtic sacred
trees. Faery willows which lodge dryads are said to walk about
at night seeking new locations to lay down roots. They make beautiful
music with their voices, sounds which are very compelling to humans.
These faeries can be found in the physical as well as the astral
realm. They can be found in willow groves or the Faery Triad of
oak, ash, and thorn or in rowan, birch, or elder trees. Invite
them to your circle and ask them to join in whatever ritual you
have planned. Even if they do not show up they may send you helpful
energy. They often show up in circles when the guardians of the
East are called. They can be persuaded to help teach you the secrets
of divination, astral travel, or tree magic.
Fachan: This Highland faery appears very comical but has a
very nasty disposition. His body contains only one of everything;
one head, one eye, one ear, one arm, one leg, one foot, one toe,
etc. All centered down the center of his body which is hairy and
feathered. He carries a spiked club which he swings to chase away
visitors from atop his home on the highest Highland mountains.
He is active all year. He is very jealous of the gift of flight
and hates all other living things and chases them away with his
vicious looking club. Contact or ritual help is not advised from
Folk: Also known as Sea Gardeners and the Lady's Own. They
are anthropomorphic beings who shun human contact though they
seem not to wish us any harm. They live beneath the lochs of Scotland.
No one has ever met them but there are myths and stories of those
who have been taken to their underwater world which is said to
be utopian in nature and enclosed in glass . Their favorite pastime
is gardening and their underwater world is a paradise of flowers
and lush foliage. If you desire contact with them they can found
on the physical plane as well as the astral. Approach them with
caution since little is known about them. If they show you their
world be careful not to offend them or overstay your visit. They
may be helpful in lending energy to spells for the protection
and preservation of plants and marine life.
Gnomes are found throughout the world. They are dwarf faeries
who appear to be quite old because they mature very young though
they live about a thousand years. They stand about 12 inches tall.
They wear old fashioned costumes such as small pointed red hats
and blue or green clothing. They are also kind hearted and always
take care of sick or frightened animals. They are active all year
round. They live deep in ancient forests under old oak trees and
make their dwellings in their intricate root systems. Their main
job is the protection and healing of wildlife, though they occasionally
help humans along their spiritual quest. Their only known enemies
are martens, owls, and humans that destroy their homes. They can
be found on the physical plane and in the astral. Their element
is earth. To contact them simply invite them to you. This works
especially well in astral travel. Gnomes can lend their help in
spells and rituals, especially that of protection, healing animals
and people. Since they are expert healers, they may be willing
to teach one the secrets of magical herbalism. They love to dance
and lend their energies to rituals celebrating the forest gods
Gruagach: Not to be confused with the Pictish God of the Sun
with the same name. She is a solitary female faery, extremely
grotesque in appearance but with a heart of gold. She is also
know as the Herdswoman and the Firesitter. She carries a shepherd's
staff and her gown is usually green in color but it has been said
to be cornsilk gold. She enjoys any brief human contact she can
get and will offer whatever help she can in your spiritual quests
if you show no fear or revulsion. She is most active in the Summer
during the day.
She is primarily a protector of livestock, mainly cattle. She
protects herds from the Buachailleen and leads the herds to water.
She is always cold loves a warm fire, but being a faery she cannot
start her own. To keep warm she makes her home in the Summer of
Faeryland. Scottish lore says that when she travels the physical
plane she will appear at the doorstep of Highlanders and ask to
sit beside the fire. If allowed she will look after the home and
herds, if not she will cause trouble and steal animals. Highlanders
still pour offerings of milk into hollow stones as offerings to
her. She can be contacted on the physical and the astral plane
in Faeryland in the Summer. Be aware that she has a very limited
attention span. As far as magical assistance she can help in spiritual
quests and in guarding herds. She can also lend much energy to
spells involving human, animal, or plant fertility.
Dhu:The Ghillie Dhu are guardian tree spirits who are disguised
as foliage and dislike human beings. They are most active at night
and prefer birch trees to all others and guard them jealously
from humans. People traveling in enchanted woods must be careful
not to be grabbed by the long, green arms of the Ghillie Dhu because
they will be enslaved by this faery forever. Scottish forests
were once heavily populated by these faeries but now they becoming
rare. Contact is not advised.
Pixies: Like other pixies, the Heather Pixies have clear or
golden auras and delicate translucent wings. But these faeries
are attracted to the moors and the heather that covers them. They
are not adverse to human contact but do not seek us out. They
have a pranksterish nature about them. They are active all year.
They live in fields of heather or on the moors of the Scottish
Lowlands. If you wish to approach them do so slowly and let them
know that you want to befriend them. Their magical and ritual
help is undetermined
Kelpies are faeries who live in water, especially the lochs of
Scotland. They are rarely seen anymore. They are small bulbous
shaped faeries with huge teeth and pointed ears. They are sly,
stupid, and very foul tempered. They are cannibalistic were once
densely populated the North Sea and the lochs of Scotland. They
fed on deer, other faeries and humans who ventured too close to
their abodes. They would appear as seahorses and entice humans
to ride them so that they could drown them. They could also shapeshift
into very handsome young men in order to lure women but they were
unable to change their hair which would appear as seaweed. Their
principal home is in Loch Ness which is sacred to them. Contact
is not advised !
Erg: This is a singular faery whose element is water. Their
is only one of him and he can be easily distinguished since he
dresses like a soldier. He is easy to spot from other soldiers
due to his small size and his red right hand. He is a portent
of death if you see him except with him you have a second chance.
If seen he will stop on a road or path and challenge you with
a raising of his red right hand. The best thing to do is to retreat
since if you fight him you will die within a fortnight. His red
hand is result of those who he has killed in combat. He has not
been seen in years. He can be found on lonely roadsides near water.
They are more commonly called Mermen or Mermaids depending upon
their gender. They have the lower bodies of fish and the upper
bodies and heads of humans. They appear as adult males of great
beauty and no children have been sighted. They are usually friendly
and are slow to anger. But they detest people who desecrate their
homes. They are active all year round. There is one race of malevolent
Merpeople called the Blue Men of the Muir from Scotland. They
have often been accused of causing storms in the North Sea and
throwing boulders at ships. They can be sent away by reciting
rhymes which confuses them. They can of course can be found at
sea or at the seashore and this is naturally the best place to
contact them. Use your mind to call out to them. Helping to take
care of the oceans is a good way to win their trust. They can
be also be found in the astral in Faeryland. They can be called
upon in rituals to help save the oceans or finding persons and
things lost at sea.
These are Scottish sea faeries native to the Hebrides Islands.
They are extremely ill tempered and hideous with large bodies
and can take on any form they wish but always appear ugly to humans.
When not shapeshifting they appear as half human and half horse
with fins as feet. They are active all year round. They enjoy
coming out of the sea and chasing humans just to frighten them.
They are easy to escape by crossing over running water such as
a creek or river. They also prey on other faeries. They are extremely
foul smelling and are sensed long before they approach. The odor
has been described as a cross between rotting eggs and fish covered
with mildew. Can be found at seashores but contact and ritual
help is not advised.
These are small, winged creatures with heads too large for their
bodies. They have small pointed ears and noses and arched eyebrows.
Their wings are shiny and translucent, and are seen wearing seasonal
colors and flora. They are friendly but capricious and are given
to non-malicious mischief. They wear caps of foxglove and toadstools,
plants they hold sacred. There is no gender differentiation. They
are most active in the spring and are found in flower gardens,
in wildflower preserves, and in the spring of Faeryland. They
are often seen around Beltaine. Their queen is said to be a tiny
woman of sublime beauty who has created a spring world in Faeryland.
They hate human laziness and also detest iron which will kill
them on contact. They are trooping faeries who love dancing, playing,
and music. They have gatherings known as Pixie Fairs in Northern
England. Pixie dust is a sparkling material seen wherever these
faeries have walked. It is a silvery gold material left by their
footprints. If you wish to contact them approach with caution
and let them know you wish to befriend them. They may respond
with mischief. They will not accept invitations to your circle.
Red Cap: This is a solitary faery and we should be thankful
for this since he is dangerous and hateful in nature. He appears
as an emaciated man with a leathery body with little or no hair.
He carries a sharp wooden scythe with which he strikes down all
who invades the area he has chosen to guard. He is active all
year and his element is fire. He moves amongst the ruined castles
and cairns of lowland Scotland along the English border. He guards
these places with his life. The Red Cap he wears has been dipped
in the blood of his victims. There have been documented sightings
Court: Also called the Blessed Ones or The Sluagh. Their element
is Air. They are trooping faeries of the winds who have been heard
but never seen. Scottish folklore presents them as a huge host
of light and benevolence riding on the night air. They are active
year round especially on the Sabbaths. They and their counterparts,
the Unseelie Court, are a rare example of duality in paganism.
The Seelie Court is good and benevolent consisting of the most
heroic and beautiful faeries of Scotland. They ride the winds
looking down at the earth for any good which they can do. According
to Scottish legend they once interacted much with humans. When
not trooping they are purported to live underground. This abode
is reported to be on the Isle of Skye. Their ritual help is unknown.
They seem only to approach humans whom they choose.
These seaside faeries are found on the shores of and lochs of
Scotland, the Orkney Islands, and the Hebrides. They appear as
seals with human characteristics. But they can shed their sealskin
and appears as perfect human males and females. Their attitudes
toward humans is unknown. They are not as capricious as other
faeries but they have very jealous natures. They sometimes take
human mates but they sometimes tire of them and leave them to
die of broken hearts. Approach them cautiously and mentally call
out to them if you feel well protected. Their ritual or magic
help is unknown but they may lend their energies to help protect
Scotland in times of natural crisis. They are believed to know
the secrets of all the world's oceans and may share this knowledge
They are small faeries who dwell in pools of shallow fresh water
and in woodland lakes. They are fishlike in appearance but have
huge mouths and eyes which permits them to see well at night.
They round bodies and are usually dark red or purple in color.
They bob near the surface with their big eyes showing. They like
to play harmless pranks. They are active all year round. Contact
is probably not a good idea and would serve no useful purpose.
But if one is determined, with a little effort, a witch could
befriend these creatures. Their magical or ritual help is unknown.
These playful little water horses are found in the Shetland and
Orkney Islands. They have been seen for over a hundred years now
and is now believed they have died out on the physical plane.
They were once plentiful in the North Sea and were friendly with
both sailors and people along the seashore.
These squat, round, misshapen faeries with no legs are found in
the Shetland and Orkney Islands. They are not wicked but love
to prowl about in the night and move and hide things in odd places.
They are most active at night. They move about by rolling on their
bulbous forms or bouncing like rubber balls. It is doubtful if
they will ever aid humans in rituals.
These faeries are found in the sea around the Orkney and Shetland
Islands and they guard the inlets and waters around their rocky
coasts. They were brought to Scotland by the Norse. They appear
as multiheaded sea monsters. Their purpose seems to be the protection
of the islands and not the destruction of sailors and ships. To
contact them try calling out to them in a ritual or going to them
in the seas of Faeryland. They may lend their help to rituals
and spells involving the physical and environmental protection
of the northern lands of Scotland.
Unseelie Court: Like the Seelie Court, the Unseelie Court
has never been seen. People have described them as a massive dark
cloud which rides upon the wind. They are thoroughly evil. As
stated with the Seelie Court, this is a rare form of dualism in
paganism. They are most active at night from Samhain to Ostara.
Unseelie means "damned" or "unblessed" and
some Scottish legends say they were once members of the Seelie
Court who fell from grace. They travel on the night winds from
where their unnerving cackling and howling can be heard. They
have no method of reproduction, so they enslave mortals whom they
think would never be missed and take them along to become one
of them. Contact is not advised !
These Faeries are extremely ugly, so much so that they have been
blamed for frightening people to death. They are wrinkled, hairy
in patches, and emaciated; have duck feathers on their backs and
necks; and are topped by huge, misshapen heads. They are active
all year. Their element is earth. They will be glad to be helpful
in almost any endeavor in exchange for brief company. They are
known to be very intelligent and extremely psychic. To find them,
seek them out in isolated woodlands or call them to your circle.
When doing the latter, call them as you invoke the four directions.
If you are psychically aware enough to see faeries at your circle,
just make sure you are prepared for their appearance. In ritual
help they may offer their aid and energy for any positive purpose
or in divination.
To Scots Folklore