London (United Kingdom) – Even today – as shown by the results of an online survey from 2013 to 2017 – many people describe their sightings, close encounters and interactions with fairies, elves and gnomes.
Thus, the result of the “The Fairy Census” contradicts the perhaps widespread idea that natural beings are a myth of fairy tales and legends, past times or have been replaced by the figures of modern myths. What exactly describe those witnesses who even today describe contacts with fairies and elves does not answer the survey.
Fairies and elves are probably the best known of fairy tales and legends and folktales. Really, most people – if any – do fairies only in the children’s and fantasy literature, in movies and video games. In fact, it was still different at the beginning of the last century, and even famous contemporaries such as Sherlock Holms inventor Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, whose fictional character is famed for his rational gift of dedication , propagated early photos of the so-called Cottingley Fairies as photographic evidence of the existence of the Naturwesen, even if these later turn out to be fakes.
The now by the historian Dr. Simon Young created the ” Fairy Census 2014-2017 ” for the “Fairy Investigation Society”, which was founded in 1927, and published online. Around 400 pages contain around 500 case descriptions of modern sightings and contacts to and from fairies and elves. In addition to requesting a detailed account of the experiences, the online questionnaire also asked the Elf witnesses for personal information and their views on when, how, and why they believe they can see the spirits of nature.
The goal was not only the detailed collection of cases now available, but also the effort to better understand the phenomena and the search for common, consistent elements in the reports. For example, according to the place of sighting, the presence of other witnesses, the frequency, the time and duration of sighting, as well as the mood of both the witnesses and the apparitions themselves and whether the witnesses witnessed their experiences with fairies as well as other supersensible ones Experiences had been made or whether their close encounters with the fairies were accompanied by other unusual phenomena such as loss of time or unusual sensations.
The historian Simon Young himself is an expert in folklore and the author of numerous articles and books on belief in fairies, elves, and other natural beings. Although Young’s current “counterfeiting” is in the tradition of earlier efforts of a similar nature by the fairy researchers Evans Wentz and Marjorie Johnson, the historian emphasizes that their concern was proof of the existence of fairies, but he himself does not pursue that goal and does so just to get a better understanding of the fairy phenomenon itself. Nevertheless, he was convinced of the honesty of most of the witnesses and participants in the Fairy Census. Only in four to five cases out of hundreds did he get the impression that the authors had written and sent them in order to discredit the work and objectives of the survey: