Thursday, April 12, 2018

A-Z Challenge: K is for Kelpies

It's time for the letter K. I'm posting for the AtoZ Challenge about Under the Sea Myths & Legends,. Again, I'm featuring a sea creature that takes the form of a horse.

K is for Kelpies

A Kelpie is a shape-shifting water sprite, not to be confused with Each Uisge, the other Scottish mythical sea creature. This one, according to folklore is more demonic than the other one and hangs out near lochs or lakes--not oceans. Like the Loch Ness Monster, Kelpies have a legendary tale from nearly every body of water in Scottland. Centuries ago it was said horses were slaughtered as an offering to the gods, thus creating the Kelpie myth. Other stories say these mystical tales were created to keep the children away from the water.

This beast may shape-shift into a human males mostly but there are some stories that feature a females. When in human form, it's said that humans can spot them by their hooves on their feet and also water weeds in the hair.

Kelpie's like to lure humans into the water and eat them, of course. *shivers* It's said the only way to kill them with a silver bullet which is like the werewolf. Maybe these killing methods are alike because of the shape-shifting component? Who knows?

There some really cool folklore tales about these creatures and others. One book I found was The Celtic Breeze: Stories of the Otherworld from Scotland, Ireland, and Wales by Heather McNeil. This book features many Scottish mythical tales, including that of the Kelpie. Some art from the 18 and 1900s are just as mesmerizing as the folklore. See the picture here of artist, Herbert James Draper, 1913 as he interprets a female Kelpie. Stunning, huh?

Now, these are totally myths right? Yeah, but cool just the same.

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