Last Friday, I was journeying to school and decided to quickly visit the library on the way. As I walked over some grass, I noticed that I'd gone straight through the centre of a Fairy Ring. It was a perfectly formed ring of mushrooms.
(This is also scientifically called "Marasmius oreades" when fungus developes under the wet soil and the ground needs nurtients. For more info, click on Fairy Rings at the Mushroom Expert site.)
In folklore, these fairy rings are said to contain magical powers. They were created by fairies, pixies, elves or witches. It was caused by fairies and pixies dancing over the ground, forming a ring of mushrooms. In Scandinavia, the elves were responsible. In Germany, witches made spells on the earth to cause the rings. As I have done walked into a circle of mushrooms, "Others tell tales of these rings transporting people who mistakenly walk into their circle, taking them to far off places or strange lands." Page source. However, some said that it was "bad luck" to enter a fairy ring!
Entering a fairy ring, according to European folklore was extremely bad luck. They were guarded by huge toads that would curse anyone who entered the circle. Other superstitions were that, if one entered a fairy ring, soon they would lose one of their eyes. Other stories warned young girls against touching the dew inside a fairy ring; if it got on your skin, it would develop into skin problems. Almost all European folklore has a warning against entering a fairy ring because the fairies could kidnap you as soon as you stepped into one. Or the fairies might wait until you were in bed asleep, and slip a changeling into your place. Many tales also tell of people who have stepped inside fairy rings and were never seen again, or of others, who have gone inside one only to be driven insane by the music of the elves that they could hear once inside. Several other legends say that stepping into a fairy ring would allow one to see fairies and elves, but would also make the person prone to their deceptive illusions as well. (Author - FairyLore)
Strange. On the day that I entered the ring of mushrooms, my friend had to finish work early for a failed eye and needed to see a doctor. At the weekend I also discovered some pretty unpleasant things had been happening in the past. I also fell out with people and almost got bitten by a dog! Is any of this true or am I reading too much into the folklore myths?
There is more folklore about Fairy Rings here:
Fairy Rings: Nature's Magical Mushroom Circles from Environmental Graffiti.
Fairy Ring - Wikipedia