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Leprechauns

September 21, 2010

The Claims

A leprechaun is a mischievous fairy of Irish folklore, usually depicted as a miniature old man in a green coat. Leprechauns are commonly held to hide gold coins in a pot at the end of a rainbow.

The Evidence

The name is derived from the Irish word leipreachán, which is believed to be a corruption of Old Irish luchorpán, a compound of the roots lú (small) and corp (body).

The earliest known reference to the leprechaun appears in the medieval Irish tale known as the Adventure of Fergus, son of Léti. Dating is uncertain but is pre AD 1000. The text contains an episode in which Fergus mac Léti, King of Ulster, falls asleep on a beach and wakes to find himself being dragged into the sea by three leprechauns. He captures his abductors, who grant him three wishes in exchange for their release.

The word first appeared in English in 1604 (as “lubrican”) in Dekker’s comedy “The Honest Whore”.

Like other fairy creatures, leprechauns have been linked to the Tuatha Dé Danann (“peoples of the goddess Danu”) of Irish mythology.

More recently, leprechauns have become popular in North American culture, in part due to the celebration of St. Patrick´s Day, and in support of tourism in Ireland.

Conclusion

There is no evidence supporting the existence of leprechauns.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Nick permalink
    June 4, 2011 12:53 AM

    Just remember if you catch a leprechaun he will give you three wishes. If you accept, he will grant them, but then say he likes you/your so generous/ its Thursday/ I have to grant x wishes a week and im behind or whatever and offer you a fourth wish, or as many wishes as you want. Should you actually make a fourth wish, the leprechaun will say” I grant you three wishes be they big or small but since you wished the fourth wish you get none at all” and disappear, while canceling out or perverting all your previous wishes.

  2. June 1, 2011 5:15 PM

    hey man leprechauns have to be real what other reason would we have to get drunk on st. pattys day? leprechauns like to drink not hide gold or anything silly like that thats all just drunken misconceptions

  3. December 31, 2010 1:10 AM

    Truth matters to me. There is no empirical evidence for leprechauns, so I believe in them as much as an orbiting teapot or any one of the 2800 gods.

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