Many have been the tales throughout the centuries regarding food and drink found in otherwordly domains. Various myths have offered narrations about the dangers of consuming sweets, fruits and other edible stuff either in the Underworld or some other supernatural realm. This post explores in detail the consequences humans have faced for both having eaten and having refused fairy food.
Ida Rentoul Outhwaite
Fairy foodstuffs are mysterious. Eating or drinking within fairyland is widely accepted to be a way of ensuring that you cannot escape back to your home: you take fairy nature within yourself- and therefore you must abstain from meals whilst visiting. Sometimes, a wise friend might warn a person of the risks before they go- as was the case with a Ross-shire midwife called to a delivery in the knoll at Big Strath; sometimes the help comes from someone already there in Faerie. In the Hertfordshire fairy-tale of the Green Lady, a girl working as a servant for the green (fairy) woman is warned by fish in a well where she draws water not to eat the household’s food.
What is odd, though, is that the converse of this rule is that, if you encounter fairy food and drink in the human world, refusing to eat it…
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