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Also known as: ‘True’ Giants, Hugboys, Atach, Gawr, Ents, Childes.
The Wraths are the biggest ‘supernatural’ entities ever recorded in these isles, or anywhere on this planet for that matter. Though essentially humanoid, these big folk can vary somewhat both in appearance and character. Whilst many are extremely belligerent towards mankind, others would actually quite like to be our friends. However the sheer clumsiness of their nature could prove potentially hazardous to smaller creatures and any friendships would likely prove to be awkward or arduous. Wraths are generally solitary, or live in small family groups, and encounters with others of their kind could often become confrontational. Either out of natural habit or deliberate antagonism, Wraths also frequently became the enemies of humankind and Giant-killers would oft be sought to dispose of them. A great source of consternation was food. Obviously something the size of a Wrath would need to eat a considerably large amount of food, however much of the Wraths’ diet was grown or reared by the humans, otherwise belonged to the humans (or in some cases, were the humans). Another problem with the largest specimens was caused by the fact that it took so long for the food to move through their gastric system, much of it would have rotted before it had been digested and obviously the gastric ailments of a Giant were not pleasurable for any of their neighbours.



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The Cyclopes are a distinctive variety of Giant, easily distinguished by their large solitary eye. Although the Fomorii warlord Balor, the Wrath King Yspadden Pencawr and the Blue Hags, Cailleach Bheur and Black Annis, are all notably one-eyed they are not true Cyclopes as they actually have two eyes - one permanently closed and useless, and the other sharp and monstrous. True Cyclopes only have a single huge eye situated in the centre of their forehead, though some may also have two mock eyes situated in the normal place, but these are completely grafted shut and non-functional and have been since birth.
Cyclopes are notably smarter than most and many are talented craftsmen or skilled builders, millers or herdsmen. However they are also notoriously fierce, conniving and often extremely predatory on mankind. Though the species is far more common and virulent to the Mediterranean island of Sicily and to parts of Africa, individuals have also been reported in the British countryside, especially in Yorkshire and Wales.



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Also known as: Stone-Throwing Giants, Fooar.
Many Giants in Britain and Ireland displayed a propensity for throwing stones, yet the Manx Foawr were absolutely notorious for heaving boulders around. They would throw rocks at humans, at ships, at each other and they would throw rocks just for the sake of throwing rocks. It seems however that the males of the species were more inclined towards trouble-making and stone-lobbing than the females. The masculine Foawr were despised by human farmers, not only for their rock-hurling but also for their other habit of ravishing cattle. It has been considered that the Foawr may be of the same lineage as the Fomorii and some at least were said to be the children of the haggard storm-goddess, the Cailleach Bheur.



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Also known as: Fifel - females known as Ogresses.
Ogres are considerably smaller and somewhat smarter than most Wraths, but there is no debate about their character. Ogres are all dangerously blood-thirsty and they regard mankind as nothing more than meat. This is made even more unsettling by the fact that they will often attempt to lure humans (especially children) into their lair through false charm and promises. They are generally foul both in their habits and appearance, but their numbers are thankfully sometimes maintained by their occasional tendency to eat their own offspring. Due to their potential for cannibalism, they are most often solitary. Like some spiders and mantids, their courtship could sometimes run the risk of one of the partners ending up as lunch. Some Ogres have also been accused of defiling young maidens. Whilst all Ogres and Ogresses are base and cruel, some are less primitive than others.



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The Anthropophagi are a bizarre breed of Ogre, for they have no heads. Their grim features are instead set apart on their muscular torsos, though due to the proximity of the bowels, Anthropophagi have no noses. Their rudimentary brains are thought to lie beneath their stomachs. Whilst they certainly cannot be claimed to be amiable towards mankind, perhaps only slight relief may be found in the claim that they will only kill us if they are hungry. They frequently arm themselves with crude weaponry and use tools and artefacts often crafted from human bones. Though the Anthropophagi tend to be encountered in isolation or in small numbers (they also have a cannibalistic tendency), it is possible that they are closely related to very similar North African creatures called Blemmyae.



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Whilst sightings of living, breathing Giants are perhaps becoming increasingly rare, encounters with huge Ghosts have been reported in recent times. Such a Giant Ghost or Thyr is Jack in Irons, who haunts lonely roads in Yorkshire, England. Manacled and chained, it is thought that in his ‘natural’ life Jack was a Wrath who had been captured, incarcerated and eventually executed for crimes against humanity. Subsequent sightings have reported a motley collection of human heads hanging from Jack’s belt and it has also been claimed that this ghost is well aware of the terror he inspires in people, and that he revels in the fact. Another acclaimed Giant Ghost is the Big Grey Man of Ben Macdhui (also known as Am Fear Liath Mor, or the Bodach Mor) in the Cairngorm Mountains, Scotland. Also sighted at Braerich in Glen Eanich, he appears as a very large hazy male figure when actually seen, however other manifestations of his presence include the appearance of big footprints mysteriously crunching into the snow and a strange disembodied, resonant voice muttering and chanting in a vaguely Gaelic-like tongue. Some suspect that the Big Grey Man is actually the spirit of the mountain itself rather than the revenant of a dead Giant. Wales also has its equivalent to the Big Grey Man known as the Grey King (or also as the Monarch of the Mist, or Brenin Llwyd). This tall mysterious figure is said to haunt various peaks in Snowdonia and in bygone days was feared to be an abductor of children.


All artwork and text © Andrew L. Paciorek