The Little People.

Cornish people like other Celts have a strong traditional belief is fairies or little people. In Cornwall they are divided into several categories

The Piskies – Small mischievous sprites that live in secret on moorlands and other isolated places can be helpful household spirits to some. Numerous stories abound concerning the these little people. Sometimes they were considered to be the souls of departed who haunted the high places. Piskies were also notorious for distracting travelers and getting them lost or Piskie led. There is a saying in West Cornwall “Piskie led is often Whiskey Led”.

The Knockers – Spirits of the mine who every miner worked hard to placate by giving small scraps of food. The most famous Knocker story is that of Tom Trevorrow who foolishly ignored the instruction to “leave a didgn of thy fuggin for the Bucca”.

The Spriggans – Spriggans were grotesquely ugly, found at old ruins and barrows guarding buried treasure and generally acting as fairy bodyguards. They were also said to be busy thieves. Though usually small, they had the ability to swell to enormous size (they’re sometimes speculated to be the ghosts of the old giants).

Browneys The helpful household spirits who often needed to be placated like their fairy cousins the knockers.

The general name fairy was sometimes used especially in descriptions of magical little people found in isolated places such as sea side dunes or high Carns.

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