The changeling myth is dark and disturbing. Its real-world inspiration is clear, as it apparently originated as a way to explain why certain children behaved in a way that was not considered ‘normal’. As one of the creatures of Celtic mythology, the changeling remains a unique and disturbing creation.What was the original meaning of the Changeling?
A changeling, also historically referred to as an auf or oaf, is a human -like creature found in folklore and folk religion throughout Europe. A changeling was believed to be a fairy child that had been left in place of a human child stolen by the fairies.What is the origin of the changeling in fairy tales?
Changeling, in European folklore, a deformed or imbecilic offspring of fairies or elves substituted by them surreptitiously for a human infant. According to legend, the abducted human children are given to the devil or used to strengthen fairy stock.Why are changelings supposed to be human children?
Changelings were faeries disguised as human children. When unsuspecting parents were distracted, the fae would snatch the human child and replace it with one of their own. But why would a faerie want to swap their magickal life for that of a human?