Tuesday, March 17, 2009
St. Patrick's Day
Darby O'Gill wasn't just a figment of Walt Disney's imagination. Leprechauns are a staple of Irish folklore and mythology, going back centuries. Believed to live in fields of shamrocks, they are solitary creatures, male fairies who often take the form of tiny, old men, bent on mischief and trickery, and not to be trusted. Believed to control great buried treasure, legend has it one can find their riches at the end of a rainbow. It is also believed that to capture a leprechaun, you must hold one in your sight. The moment you look away, they escape.
The Victorian postcard below is by the famous printer Raphael Tuck. It reads "A simple little shamrock that grows on Erin's Isle".