Banshees are among the most feared creatures of the fairy and supernatural realm, and this may be in part to the sympathies they invoke when you hear their wailing. You could easily be lured into the dark of night, hoping to help the pathetic creature who sounds as if she is in mourning. Some tales recount that banshees are the ghosts of women who have died in childbirth; others say they are the restless sprits of unrequited lovers.
It is common for families to inherit the banshee, who arrives time and time again to warn of an impending death.
To quote Raymond Buckland from his book The Weiser Field Guide to Ghosts:
“It has been said that a banshee is really the disembodied soul of someone who once lived and was attached to the family in some way. It depends upon the relationship that the banshee had with the dying family member as to how the banshee announces his or her coming death. If the person about to die was of a gentle, kind disposition, then the banshee will appear and sing soft songs of warning, summoning the person to death. But if the person destined to die was of a hateful disposition, then the banshee will make her announcement with horrible cries and screams.”
Have you ever seen or heard a banshee? I want your first-hand accounts for my upcoming book, Banshees, Werewovles, Vampires, and Other Creatures of the Night (Weiser Books, October 2013).
Contact me at varlaventura AT gmail.com (you know how to actually type that, right?) and let me know what creepy creatures you’ve encountered.