far darrig

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[Ir. fear dearg, red man].

Solitary fairy from Hiberno-English oral tradition, known for mischievousness. This short, pugnacious, ugly red-clad figure specializes in practical jokes, some of which can be gruesome. He also has the ability to appear larger than he is and to release mortals trapped in fairyland. In Donegal, where a mortal man was punished with macabre experiences for not producing a succession of stories, the far darrig is tall. In Munster, according to T. Crofton Croker (1832), he is about 2.5 feet tall, wears a sugarloaf cap, a wrinkled face, and has long grey hair.

Folk motifs: F233.3; F369.4; F375.

Subjects: Religion.

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