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The Red Fairy Man of Transylvania

I'm currently reading Janet Bord's book Fairies: Real Encounters with Little People and I came across this account in it, which is quite interesting. It occurred in Transylvania in 1883:

"Mrs A.G., of Szemerja, coming home last Friday night, found a little red man sitting by the oven: the moon shone on the oven, and the outline of the little man could therefore be distinctly seen: his size was about that of a man's arm; a black cap crowned his head, his dress was red; his face and hands covered with hair. The woman's blood ran cold, as she stood staring at the strange being, who sat immovable in the moonlight: after some time, the creature advanced a few steps and disappeared. The night was spent in prayer; and in the morning she scrubbed the place where the little man had sat with garlic, and fumigated the whole place: but all in vain, for that very night the little red man sat by the oven again. As the woman entered the room, he approached her; when (either actuated by fright or by returning courage) the woman threw the can she held in her hand at the goblin: in one moment, he was on her back, thrust her head down and scratched her forehead. She fainted! and was bedfast for three days; nor did she recover until she had taken some dust from the place where the goblin sat, and drank of it three times, and she herself and the place had been fumigated three times! The little man was seen by other people last Saturday, after he had left the fainting woman, but has since disappeared. No doubt she must have seen some stray monkey, which had got loose by accident: but the good people of Szemerja are fully convinced it was a goblin, if it was not the devil himself, as it has left traces of its footsteps behind, which are exactly like those of a goose."

An interesting account - but what was it the woman (and others) saw? While some may find it hard to believe she actually saw a little "goblin," there are tales from around the world of "little people." I can't say for sure what it was, though I can say I don't think it was a monkey, like some speculated, because 1.) Why would a monkey be wearing a hat and clothing?, and 2). It was said to have left tracks like those of a goose. Last time I checked, monkeys don't have goose feet!

Maybe there really was a little fairy man seen in Transylvania in 1883...


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