The Official Collection of Fantastical Creature Information--Updated Randomly

For all your fantastical creature needs! This is the beginning of my encyclopedia, and I'm collecting as much information as I can on various fantasy creatures. Most of my stuff can be found on wikipedia. However, no source is perfect, so the stuff that is my input is often italicized. Help me by sending me more information at Questkid13@gmail.com

Side Note: There have been concerns about my using Wikipedia because it is not a reliable resource. I am well aware of wikipedia's unreliable nature--but that's exactly why I use it. Fantasy creatures are available to all, and everyone should have a chance to add their "discoveries." This website is supposed to be a fun collection of fantastical creature information with fun images to go with. I am not a reliable source--I'm just a collector. Though at this point, I am flattered that people are concerned with the validity of my site. :)

!!!!This is NOT a forum. Comments are to be informative and generally helpful. Clean humor is acceptable, but NOT if it detracts from the entry. This site is to help people find out more about fantastical creatures!!!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Elf-German Mythology



The original German elves (Old Saxon alf; Middle High German: alb, alp; plural elbe, elber; Old High German alb, by 13th century) are thought to be light creatures who lived in heaven during the era of Germanic paganism, and may have included dark elves or dwarves underground (as understood to be similar to the álfr of Old Norse mythology). In post-Christian folklore they began to be described as mischievous pranksters that could cause disease to cattle and people, and bring bad dreams to sleepers. The German word for nightmare, Albtraum, means "elf dream". The archaic form Albdruck means "elf pressure"; it was believed that nightmares are a result of an elf sitting on the dreamer's head. This aspect of German elf-belief largely corresponds to the Scandinavian belief in the mara.
As noted above, an elven king occasionally appears among the predominantly female elves in Denmark and Sweden. Alberich literally translates as "elf-sovereign", further contributing to the elf–dwarf confusion observed already in the Younger Edda.
The legend of Der Erlkönig appears to have originated in fairly recent times in Denmark and Goethe based his poem on "Erlkönigs Tochter" ("Erlkönig's Daughter"), a Danish work translated into German by Johann Gottfried Herder. The Erlkönig's nature has been the subject of some debate. The name translates literally from the German as "Alder King" rather than its common English translation, "Elf King" (which would be rendered as Elfenkönig in German). It has often been suggested that Erlkönig is a mistranslation from the original Danish elverkonge or elverkonge, which does mean "elf king".
According to German and Danish folklore, the Erlkönig appears as an omen of death, much like the banshee in Irish mythology. Unlike the banshee, however, the Erlkönig will appear only to the person about to die. His form and expression also tell the person what sort of death they will have: a pained expression means a painful death, a peaceful expression means a peaceful death. This aspect of the legend was immortalised by Goethe in his poem Der Erlkönig, later set to music by Schubert.

In the first story of the Brothers Grimm fairy tale Die Wichtelmänner, the title protagonists are two naked mannikins, which help a shoemaker in his work. When he rewards their work with little clothes, they are so delighted, that they run away and are never seen again.
A special thanks to Wikipedia

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