Advanced Ancient CivilizationsAnimal GuidesAstrologyAurasCryptidsDreamsFortune Telling & DivinationHealingMagicPaganismThe ParanormalUFOs & AliensWicca & Witchcraft

Real Fairy Pictures: The Cottingley Fairies & Other Photos of Real Fairies

Updated on April 18, 2016
kittythedreamer profile image

Kitty has been independently researching and studying the fae for over 15 years. She enjoys sharing what she's learned with her readers.

Real Fairies Caught on Film?

Do you believe in fairies? You know...those tiny illusive creatures who live between the veil of this world and another? For centuries, maybe even millennia, people all across the world have believed and seen the "wee folk" or what are more commonly referred to as fairies. Some have even claimed to have captured two particular types of fairies - pixies and gnomes on film! Whether you believe the fairy pictures are real or not is entirely up to you...here are some of their fairy tales...errrr...stories.

Elsie with a Cottingley Fairy
Elsie with a Cottingley Fairy
2nd photo of Frances with the Cottingley Fairies
2nd photo of Frances with the Cottingley Fairies
The 5th and Final 'Real' Fairy Photo, Taken by Frances
The 5th and Final 'Real' Fairy Photo, Taken by Frances

The Notorious Cottingley Fairies' Photographs

The Cottingley Fairies' photographs were a collection of five photographs taken by two young girls in Cottingley, England in 1917 through the early 1920s. The two young girls were ages ten and sixteen and were cousins. Apparently they wanted to have a bit of fun and at the same time prove the existence of fairies to their relatives, so they took some pictures of what they claimed to be fairies, or pixies, to be exact. These fairy pictures caused these young girls to acquire fame very quickly.

There were a total of five fairy photographs taken by Elsie and Frances while in Cottingley, England. The two top fairy photos here are of the two most famous of the set. To me it is obvious that these fairy pictures were fakes; however, the European people of the roaring twenties thought that these fairy photos were the real deal and even skeptics admitted to believing in fairies, after viewing these photographs.

The word spread like wildfire that these two girls had snapped pictures of real fairies living in England and even Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (of Sherlock Holmes fame) preached the word that the fairies were a real species! The girls admitted later that the first four fairy pictures of the five were pretend and that they felt so bad for so many people believing in them, that they kep going along with the idea. It was meant to be all in good fun when they snapped the fairy photographs, using cut-outs of a magazine and hat pins to position the fairies in various ways.

The last fairy picture posted here was the fifth and final photograph, taken by Frances Griffiths. This photograph was said to be the one and only true photo of fairies. Frances Griffiths apparently claimed that this one was real until her death. You can watch the interview with Frances' daughter to the right. The difference of the four fake fairy photographs as compared to the alleged real fairy photograph is that the first four have fairies with opaque bodies and wings and in the fifth photograph the fairies are translucent. Some theories have been drawn up that state that the effect came from a double-exposure but I am no expert on film and photography methods. It is very intriguing to me to learn that though Frances admitted to faking the first four fairy photographs, she would not let go of the fact that the fifth fairy photograph was indeed real. She believed in fairies and so did Elsie and that was the main reason they began taking the photographs to begin with...to prove that they existed. Even if it meant faking the first four photographs to prove that fairies live.

Dan Baines Fairy Hoax
Dan Baines Fairy Hoax
Nevada Fairy Known as "Arianna"
Nevada Fairy Known as "Arianna" | Source
Doesn't look like a firefly to me!
Doesn't look like a firefly to me!

Faeries, come take me out of this dull world,
For I would ride with you upon the wind,
Run on the top of the dishevelled tide,
And dance upon the mountains like a flame.
~William Butler Yeats, "The Land of Heart's Desire," 1894

Modern Fairy Pictures

Other "real fairy pictures" have surfaced in more recent times, some being very obviously hoaxes while others seem to have some merit.

Another large hoax coming out of England more recently is the image to the right of the seemingly mummified remains of a fairy. This image of a dead fairy spread like wildfire with the media and went viral on the internet in a mere amount of days following the capture of this fairy photograph. The fairy remains were actually a piece of artwork created by an artist/sculptor named Dan Baines, originally as an April Fool's Day joke in 2007. He posted the fairy's pictures to his website and received almost 20,000 clicks in the first day! People were astonished and some were even upset that he had revealed the whereabouts of the fairy's grave. He ended up admitting to the public that the fairy picture was nothing but a joke, but he claims that people's interest in the fairy did not subside and many still believed that the image was in fact real. Still receiving emails on the fairy to this day, Dan has said that the belief in fairies is something still very much present in society and will probably never diminish.

More questionable and potentially real fairy pictures are also posted here to the right. One of which was taken by a lady in Nevada during a camping trip. The story consisted of the lady purchasing a fairy charm off of the internet that was supposedly "charged" with fairy energy. She took this fairy pendant with her on her camping trip and invoked the fairy who had charged the pendant...the fairy even had a name, Arianna. Not a minute after the invocation of the fairy, the lady snapped this picture of a bright tiny creature (what appears to be a fairy) running away from the campsite. She claims to have used no flash and this was taken with a digital camera. If you look close at the illuminated being, it looks nothing like a firefly but does resemble a human with wings...a fairy, glowing like a nightlight.

For centuries, people have claimed to have encounters with fairy beings. Pixies, gnomes, trolls, will-o-wisps, dryads, the bean-sidhe...all of these types of fairies have been encountered and even summoned for magical aid by the people of old (and even modern folks) and have been recorded or passed down by story-telling from generation to generation. As wild and ridiculous as some of these fairy tales may seem to the skeptic, we all have to realize that these legends and beliefs in fairies take root in something true. Just as the monstrous squid scared sailors for hundreds or thousands of years and then later turned out to be a surprisingly real and frightening species! Maybe the belief in fairies originates from truth...maybe fairies did walk in our world long ago...maybe they still visit our world even today for the lucky (or blessed) ones to catch a passing glimpse of their glow.

© 2011 Author Nicole Canfield

Comments

Submit a Comment

  • Nell Rose profile image

    Nell Rose 7 months ago from England

    Just spotted this on here kitty, good to see it again, and I love the story, if only it had been real, but then again, maybe it was? lol!

  • Kristen Howe profile image

    Kristen Howe 18 months ago from Northeast Ohio

    My pleasure Kitty. I know you do. :-)

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 18 months ago from the Ether

    Thanks, Kristen! You know how I love my faeries. :)

  • Kristen Howe profile image

    Kristen Howe 18 months ago from Northeast Ohio

    Kitty, this was a real interesting hub about fairies back then. Hmm. Voted up!

  • lolly 2 years ago

    i find fairies so interesting and want to know more!!?

  • namia 3 years ago

    are the faries are real or nat

  • WriterJanis profile image

    Janis 3 years ago from California

    I adore fairies. Thanks for writing this.

  • 4tytt 3 years ago

    "oooooooooooooooo that's so cool"

  • jj 3 years ago

    Do you have any proof?

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 3 years ago from the Ether

    Thanks so much for reading and commenting, Rosalind! :)

  • Rosalind 3 years ago

    Hi I just came across you by accident & glad I did :) I just watched the story of the two little girls who lived in the cottage and took the photos,I was just wondering if they where still alive and if they ever admitted it was all a fake or still maintained it was true,Thank now I have my Answer.Very good Hub love everything that's paranormal,And believe stories although may have had a lot added on over all the years must have came from somewhere for them to start(Well the one's that wont go away after a few months years) Id like to read more of your stuff,Thanks Again Regards Rosalind :)

  • fairies are real 3 years ago

    I think fairies are real and they are still living in Cottingley some day ill go to Cottingley and search for fairies to find truth and to claim that they are not legends and they are real.

    And when i do i will take real pictures and no fakes.

    I will be the second person to find proof that fairies are real.

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 3 years ago from the Ether

    anastasia - Of course I believe you. I have a picture of a fairy but I plan on putting it on an upcoming article. Thanks for sharing!

  • thalia 3 years ago

    i love fairys

  • anastasia923 4 years ago

    she said that there was pixie dust.

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    daisy - Yes, in many videos that I make they tend to fly by really quickly like little glowing orbs...and I've dreamed of them too! The one dream I can remember was a fairy about the size of a human but much thinner, with skin almost transparent and white hair. She was beautiful. Thanks for the read and comment!

  • daisyf1305 profile image

    Daisy Fabelo 4 years ago from miami beach

    I love your hub, When I see the fairies around me they are ususally very bright some are smaller than others but like bright orbs, My fav. is when I dream with fairies they are so beautiful and nothing like how they are resembled in books and stories. They have different colored skins some look a bit gothis as others are frail and pretty. I enjoy interaction with the Fae it is extrodinary... Ty for the hub

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    good for you.

  • makayla 4 years ago

    I think that seeing isint beliving I know they are real I can feel it in my soul. I dont care what anyone thinks some people think that faires are for babys I dont believe 1 little bit of that.

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    Ditto!

  • makayla 4 years ago

    I believe in fairys and i always will

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    Very good points, Riley. Thanks for sharing your opinions!

  • Riley 4 years ago

    I believe in fairies. I don't care what anyone else says. They can say that it's just a myth, but then you have to think. The idea began somewhere somehow. And wherever it started, something happened to make the words of it last to this day. Plus when you think of how much people write about fairies they all seem to have something in common with each other. Something related which shows they all had a common idea.

    I've never had a fey experience, but I think that they are out there... And only special people see them because it's a matter of the fairies wanting people to just accept knowing that they are there without seeing them. Then the lucky ones will be rewarded with sight.

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    Amazing! Why do you think they were there?

  • annabella100 4 years ago

    i saw a real life fairy at the museum of science and industry when everybody was not looking.and i saw 10 of them.i love fairies since i saw those 10 fairies all around me. and i forgot to tell you that anastasia923 is my real life sister.

  • anastasia923 4 years ago

    i just watched the movie tinkerbell and that movie got me thinking about when i saw a real life fairy laying on my bed at my fathers house.and it was tinkerbell.i will love to see her one last time.

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    Riley - Of course we believe!

  • Riley 4 years ago

    I like to see that other peple beleve fairies

  • Anahita 4 years ago

    where are fairies

  • tayva 4 years ago

    haha i beleive in fairies a lot and tinkerbell

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    AP - I agree fully! Thanks for reading...and for following my trip down fairy lane. :)

  • Alastar Packer profile image

    Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

    Ah no doubt about it, the fifth one is different. And the campfire fairy pic isn't a firefly but is similar to the ones on your new fairy hub. Thanks Kitty.

  • kem4now@aol.com 4 years ago

    I am very glad to see this web site and I saw "Fairy Tale: A True Story" For years I have/had the thoughts and believe. I'm not sure about the tooth fairy or Santa but I am serious when I think of my Guardian Angel and what she looks like. I have named her "Katherine" and I imagine her beautiful. God told us that we are assigned Angels and Gueardian Angels to watch over us. I believe and have faith in that. That gives me comfort. Thank you for sharing. Karon

  • jhane_022 5 years ago

    i believe in fairy...:)

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Melissa - Glad you found this one as interesting as I did. Yes, Frances indeed insisted that the fifth and final photo was real...and her family believed her, too. Thanks for reading & voting!

  • Melissa McClain profile image

    Melissa McClain 5 years ago from Atlanta, GA

    Very interesting! I had heard of the Cottingley fairies but didn't know that Frances insisted to her death that one of the pics was real. Catching a fairy on film would be next to impossible anyway so I can see why these girls felt the need to fake it to prove it.

    Voted up!

  • danieldandanchris@yahoo.com 5 years ago

    i do i do believe

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    shanaya - That's so sweet, Shanaya. I'm glad I could rekindle memories of your childhood. :) Thanks for reading and voting so much.

  • shanaya profile image

    shanaya 5 years ago from Living in my Own Dreams:)

    Hey My Dear Friend Kitty! It's so interesting Hub because the topic is my all time favorite. I was so curious in my childhood, To see a Fairy in real. But I must say that your Hub had taken me back to my Delightful Memories. Thanks for the Enjoyable fairy ride.:)

    Voted up, beautiful, awesome, interesting, useful.

    with lots of love

    from SHANAYA:)

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    tammy - Thank you so much! You're a doll.

  • tammyswallow profile image

    Tammy 5 years ago from North Carolina

    I believe! Some of the best hubs on these pages!

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    joe - If you read my hub, you would see that I talk about the hoax of the four Cottingley fairies pictures; however, the last, the fifth cottingley picture, was sworn to be real. The lady who was the youngest of the two girls involved with the Cottingley fairy hoax swore until the day she died that the fifth was authentic. Her grandchildren even believed her.

    Other than the Cottingley fairies, the belief in fairies goes back centuries, probably even millennia. People who do not believe in fairies pass it off as any other legend or myth and say that there is some sort of scientific explanation for it. I wonder when science will ever prove them wrong?

  • joe 5 years ago

    i wish fairies were real but i guess it is all hoax: http://www.psychic-mystery.com/cottingley-fairies/

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Delisha - Of course. Go for it!

  • Delisha 5 years ago

    Could I ask you a question?

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Stacy - Good luck, I know it's possible to attract fairies...just be careful which ones you attract! Thanks for sharing. :)

  • Stacy 5 years ago

    OMG I want to attract them too. I've always belived in faires i always thought they lived in my tree in my back garden when i was a child. I believe people can also be faires and pixies to.

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Please do! Good luck and blessings to you...anyone who loves the fay as much as I do deserves to be blessed! :)

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Nina - That sounds like a beautiful experience. I wish I could've seen it! And for the record, I believe that you did see a fairy. Thanks for sharing with us, sweetie!

  • Nina 5 years ago

    I've seen a fairy on the water before. I was just like the other person described. It kneeled down and stared drinking water from the lake. It looked like a bug that resembled a human. It stayed there for like five minutes and then it flew away. Nobody ever believe me when I say I’ve seen a fairly before.

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    lil-lisa - That's awesome. Keep planting & taking care of your garden, for that is sure to attract some fairies. If you would like to learn more, I'd strongly suggest reading Edain McCoy's Guide to Faery Folk, the link to purchase on Amazon is below:

    http://www.amazon.com/Witchs-Guide-Faery-Folk-Llew...

  • lil-lisa` 5 years ago

    i meant it does have a lot of flowers.

    thanks

  • lil-lisa 5 years ago

    yes,i do have a garden and it does have a lot of fairies and i will try planting more to attract pixies/sprites.

    thank you

    ?

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    lil-lisa - Do you have a garden or flowers outside in your yard? Depending on the type of fairy that you're trying to attract, some fairies like flowers while others are strictly house fairies. Pixies and sprites like waterfalls and fairies, and brownies are simply house fairies. If you would like to attract a group of pixies/sprites to your yard, you might want to think about planting some flowers. If you can't plant some flowers, think about just buying a plant with flowers for the outside of your house or apartment. If you're trying to attract a brownie to help with household chores, usually they come around to help out the woman of the house and will help out with little chores while everyone is sleeping. I would suggest flowers...and more libations of cream.

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Lil-lisa - If you want more tips on how to attract fairies into your house, check out my hub "How to invite fairies into your house, garden, and yard"

    https://exemplore.com/magic/How-to-Invite-Faeries-...

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    lil-lisa - anytime, sweetie!

  • lil-lisa 5 years ago

    ok i will thanks for the feedbk!!?

    x

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    lil-lisa - I have usually used milk when trying to attract fairies to my home, which has had some minor success. I haven't tried cream yet though, which might be a great idea! I usually leave my offerings right outside of my back door in a bowl. Try a bowl of cream and let me know if you notice anything odd happening in your house afterwards! Good luck and blessed be.

  • lil-lisa 5 years ago

    hi i too beleve in fairy nd hve do my resrch bt hve seemd to cme to the question wheather fairy really like cream or milk??

    can u help me??

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Looked like which picture? The bottom one? That's awesome. Where do you live that you possibly saw a fairy? Thanks for sharing, DarkTears9!

  • DarkTears9 5 years ago

    I encountered something that looked like this just a few hours ago....... and NO I AM NOT LYING!!!! I actually mean it and the reason I know I saw it is because I saw it move in the air, to a nearby tree and the tree branch moved exactly when it landed on it, and no I couldn't see it clearly but from the shadow it looks very very similar to this......

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Marlin 55 - DUDE! Nice...I'll have to check out your videos. Love paranormal investigations...more specifically EVPs!

  • Marlin 55 profile image

    Marlin 55 5 years ago from USA

    By the way, we do investigations. This one was our last investigation.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HSPJZe7vDII

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Bob - I agree! I thought it was real too until I did further research on it.

  • bob 5 years ago

    wow that fairy pitcher crped me out intil it said it was art work

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Marlin - so glad you enjoyed it! I tried my best at presenting the facts, and hopefully they weren't too biased. (though a little secret - I do believe in fairies!) Thanks for your support.

  • Marlin 55 profile image

    Marlin 55 5 years ago from USA

    A very interesting article. You presented evidence both ways. Personally, I think it is possible. I gave the article a vote up!

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Hi, Daniella! Thanks so much for your kind words. :)

  • Daniella Lopez profile image

    Danielle Lopez Newcomb 5 years ago from Arkansas

    Very awesome, original hub. :)

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Muldanianman - Very ironic indeed! I knew that he was in the middle of writing an article on fairies when the girls' pictures came into the eye of the media and that he used their pictures as a part of his article, but I had no idea that the images they used were in one of the same magazines as his writings! Crazy...thanks!

  • Muldanianman 5 years ago

    The irony was that the magazine from which the cut-outs came included a fairy tale written by Arthur Conan Doyle himself, yet he never seemed to notice.

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Well, do let me know! Thanks!

  • Lilleyth profile image

    Suzanne Sheffield 5 years ago from Mid-Atlantic

    The woman owned a retail gift shop in Elsmere, Delaware and is probably in her 50s. I have totally forgotten her name or the name of the shop. Perhaps some sychronistic event will allow me to remember it or find a note that I wrote to myself about her.

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Wow, what an awesome story, Lilleyth! I would love to hear more from someone who has had such a close encounter with the faery realm! Where did these women live and how old are they now? I would love to hear more. Faeries and stories of faeries have enchanted me since I was a little girl...and whether crazy or not, I believe. :)

  • Lilleyth profile image

    Suzanne Sheffield 5 years ago from Mid-Atlantic

    I actually have met a woman who, with her sister, witnessed fairies one morning on a shelf in their bedroom when they were children. She said they were about 5 inches tall and they watched them until they disappeared.

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Author Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Hi, Eiddwen! Nice to meet you on hubpages! I'm so glad you enjoyed it. I have a fascination with faeries and the old legends of them and so this hub was very fun to write. Thank you and I can't wait to read some of your hubs, as well!

  • Eiddwen profile image

    Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

    What an original and interesting hub.

    I now look forward to reading many more of your hubs.

    Take care

    Eiddwen.

Click to Rate This Article