LISTSERV mailing list manager LISTSERV 15.5

Help for CELTIC-L Archives

CELTIC-L Archives

CELTIC-L Archives


Next Message | Previous Message
Next in Topic | Previous in Topic
Next by Same Author | Previous by Same Author
Chronologically | Most Recent First
Proportional Font | Monospaced Font


Join or Leave CELTIC-L
Reply | Post New Message
Search Archives

Subject: Re: Selkies
From: Mara Freeman <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:CELTIC-L - The Celtic Culture List.
Date:Mon, 24 Apr 1995 16:22:18 -0700

text/plain (27 lines)

SOmeone just returned my copy of K.Briggs "Encyclopedia of Fairies", so I
wanted to add what she has to say about selkies:
"In Orkney," she writes, "the small, common seal, called "tang fish" was
supposed to belong entirely to the animal world, but the larger seals, the
great seal, the grey seal, the crested seal and others, are called "the
selkie folk" because it is believed that their natural form is human, that
they live in an underwater world or on lonely skerries and put on seal-skins
and the appearance of seals to enable them to pass through the waters from
one region of air to another." Though we usually hear of the females in
legends such as the one that inspired the "Roan Inish" movie, the male
selkies were "amorous" and used to make expeditions ashore to court human
women, but they would never stay with them long (Sigh! Same old story!)
She also compares the selkies to the "Roane" who were similar in all ways
but one: where the selkies avenged the death of their kin by raising storms
and sinking the boats of the seal-catchers, the Roane bore little
resentment. There also existed Irish creatures called "Merrows" but instead
of sealskins, they wore red caps to get them through the watery worlds.
            *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *
Mara Freeman * Carmel,CA * [log in to unmask]
She is not any common earth
Water or wood or air
But Merlin's Isle of Gramarye
That you and I will fare

Back to: Top of Message | Previous Page | Main CELTIC-L Page



CataList Email List Search Powered by the LISTSERV Email List Manager