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Also known as: Hearth Goblins, Hobgoblins, Boo-Men, Hob-Men, Hodpokers, Hobbins, Hodgepochers, Lobs, Lob-Lie-by-the-Fires, Lubber-Fiends, Broonies, Brounies, Bruinidh, Pouques.
The Brownies and the related species Hobs, attach themselves to households and occasionally to other industrious locations, where they prove themselves to be extremely prodigious but temperamental workers. Many show a great variety of skills ranging from household chores to baking, farming, milling, brewing and even on some occasions spinning, bee-keeping, cobbling and child-care. Brownies & Hobs however can be very easy to offend and they take even the most minor grievance or misunderstanding very much to heart. Should they be made to feel exploited or offended then they may storm off in an almighty huff, never to assist or be seen in that precise locality again - or alternatively may instead stick around and become as great a nuisance as they once were an assistance . Female Brownies are more rarely encountered than the males and many are strictly maternal. Brownie mothers are sometimes thought to live up chimneys and to have very long arms. A female Brownie called Hairy Meg (or Maggy) Molach was extremely industrious, however, and was as legendary for her hard work as she was for her harsh temper. The word Molach or Moulach was occasionally used to refer generally to female Brownies or more specifically to the hirsute creatures that mothered Brownies, Hobs, Dobies and the chimney-dwelling Bodachs.



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The Fenoderee was thought to originally have been a member of the Manx Trooping Faeries, the Ferrishyn - however he found himself banished for attempting to woo a human young lady instead of attending the important Fay Festival at the Autumn Equinox. Either due to his exile, or as a direct result of a Faerie curse, the Fenoderee grew increasingly uglier , more dull-witted and quick-tempered. However his strength , stamina and willingness to work were legendary and his presence on farms was invaluable, particularly at harvest time. Some human labourers, perhaps jealous of his prowess in the field, could not resist taking advantage of his simple-mindedness however and would at times send the Fenoderee on fruitless tasks, such as collecting water in a sieve. The Fenordee would take great umbrage upon the realisation of ridicule & exploitation, and also at the offer of clothing. He would either move on to another farm or become a more sinister creature known as a Buggane. It is possible that there have been several Fays who became Fenoderees or Phynnodderees, rather than all the tales being told of a single individual.



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Also known as: Booka, Bwachod, Bwaganod.
The Bwca are a similar breed to the Brownies & Hobs, though perhaps even more unpredictable in their mood-swings. The hearth and kitchen should be kept clean of dust, the fire kept alight and food should be provided for the Bwca. In return they will churn butter far better than any human could. If however the Bwca feel insulted or displeased (which they frequently do) they will instead turn all their efforts to creating as much noise, damage and disruption as possible. They also particularly dislike clergymen, teetotallers and also people with long thin noses (which is quite odd considering that many Bwca have a considerably beaky proboscis of their own). Anyone bearing one or more of these traits could find themselves a marked source of torment in a Bwca inhabited house. The Bwca are native to Wales.



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The Bean-Tighe is most happy when there is work left to be done in a house, as she revels in being helpful. She will most commonly tend to the homes of lone mothers and elderly women, though she is not sexist and will occasionally also assist men in similar situations. She will finish off chores and also check to see that the children and family pets are safe and sound as they sleep. The Bean-Tighe is so efficient in her duties however that in the tense days of the Witch-hunts, some old women would disrupt some of her work on a morning - they feared that a ‘too tidy’ house would indicate a Fay presence, who in turn may be misrepresented as an evil spirit and therefore possibly lead to the old lady being condemned for practising Witchcraft. The Bean-Tighe bears some comparison to the notion of ‘Fairy Godmothers’ - characters generally more familiar to Fairy-tales rather than to the folklore of Britain and Ireland. Bean-Tighe are notoriously fond of strawberries and cream.



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The Silkies are strange and solitary Fay women that finish off household chores at night, when the humans are asleep in their beds. They are often contemplative and morose; the only sound usually heard from them is the gentle rustle of their elegant silk gowns. However if the Silky considers that the human servants or keepers of the house are lazily negligent in their efforts and are taking her for granted, then she will harass them at any given opportunity. The melancholic Silkies are sometimes thought not to be a Faerie breed as such, but in fact to be the Ghosts of young women who had died a tragic and untimely death - perhaps even murdered by their own lovers. They are thought to undertake the domestic tasks to distract their minds from their sorrow and pain, and to kill some time in their perhaps eternal wanderings. Occasionally Northumbrian Silkies were to be seen out of doors, especially in the locality of Black Heddon. Sometimes they were observed indulging in pursuits contradictory to their sullen, refined visage, such as felling trees, breaking large rocks or startling horses for mischief. Whether engaged in domestic chores, manual labour or lowly misbehaviour, the activities and appearance of a Silky are intriguingly converse - for when these entities were first apparently encountered, silk was still a material generally adorned only by those privileged enough to be above tasks of drudgery or vulgar pranks. Previously in Scotland, law once prohibited those of a class below aristocracy from wearing such fine attire.



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Also known as: Guagach, Grogachs, Gragon, Grogans, Gunnas, The Hairy Ones, Herders, Firesitters.
Despite being covered in hair, the Grugach are always incredibly cold. For this reason they will, on occasion, knock on the door of an isolated croft in the hope of sitting by the fire awhile. If the crofters refuse to help, then the Grugach could likely cause damage to their home or steal their animals. If they were sympathetic to the Grugach’s needs despite her odd, ugly and perhaps scary appearance (for most reported Grugach are female, particularly ‘Firesitters’) then their kindness or fearful compliance would be well repaid. She would protect their home and their animals, particularly cattle. She will feed, milk, calve, and lead the cattle to water and would also resolutely endeavour to protect the beasts from rustlers, predators, Witches and other malevolent Supernatural species. Male Grugachs do exist but are particularly rare, therefore broody females, concerned that they will never give birth themselves, have been known at times to abduct human boys. They mean no harm by this as they only want a son of their own to love and nurture and will tearfully return the child should they become aware of the real parents’ distress. Male Grugach are sometimes known as Grogachs or Grogans but the names and genders seem often to be interchangeable. The Gunna is a similar (though usually male) supernatural herder. The Gunna is described as being skinny, hairy and dressed in fox-skin.

All artwork and text © Andrew L. Paciorek