Compendium 1 of the Spirit Beings in European Folklore-series covers the northwestern part of the continent where Celtic and Anglo-Saxon cultures meet the Nordic. This book catalogs the mysterious creatures of Ireland, the Isle of Man, England, Wales, Cornwall, Scotland, Hebrides, Orkneys, Faroe Islands, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark. For centuries, the peoples of these regions have influenced each other in many ways, including their mythologies and folklore. The latter is perhaps most evident in the various species of Brook-horses or Water-horses. These semi-aquatic ghostly creatures come in all kinds of varieties and are typical of the English or Gaelic speaking parts of Europe and Scandinavia. Many other ghostly entities occur only in specific areas or countries. Some even became cultural icons, such as the Irish Leprechaun, the Knockers from Wales, the Scandinavian Trolls and Huldras or the Icelandic Huldufólk. England has its Brownies, several kinds of Fairies and locally famous ghost dogs. Iceland and Scandinavia seem to “specialize” in spirit beings who appear fully materialized, such as the different species of Illveli (Evil Whales) and Draugr, the returning dead.
Compendium 1 discusses 292 spirit beings in detail, including their alternative names, with additional references to related or subordinate beings and a unique selection of illustrations.