June 2020 Updates And Beast Suggestions

Hello, everyone! I’m doing my updates post a little early because I’ve got a few special posts coming up this month. First up, Red Thread Reblog is back! If you’re not familiar with this feature, Red Thread Reblog reaches out into the blogging community and ties together two posts, one covering media inspired by mythology and one on the mythology behind the media. I won’t give too much away yet, but I will give you one hint: dragons. Continue reading “June 2020 Updates And Beast Suggestions”

Quarterly Bestiary: Kelpies: A Dive into Scottish Water Horses

Many dangerous creatures haunt the mythical landscape of Scotland. Kelpies, horse-shaped water spirits, are among the better known, and they even have connections to one of Scotland’s most famous monsters. They are fairy horses, though if you’re thinking of innocent winged ponies, you’d best think again. Kelpies are fierce flesh-eaters. Yet like many fairy beings, kelpies are more than mere monsters up close. They are wild, it’s true, but they still have a complex intelligence hidden deep within their shifting appearance. So today, let’s take a breath and dare to swim with the kelpie.

Continue reading “Quarterly Bestiary: Kelpies: A Dive into Scottish Water Horses”

March 2020 Updates and Beast Suggestions

Well, it’s been a crazy year so far, and it’s still early. I sincerely hope you are all well and holding up fine under social distancing/quarantine wherever you are. The coronavirus situation is affecting all of us, in ways we may not have expected. In terms of blogging, my biggest hurdle right now is not being able to access physical books from libraries. That’s pretty minor. It might delay a few of my posts, but I’ll continue to share as well as visiting your blogs to enjoy your wit, wisdom, and artwork in the coming months. I know many of you are facing much more frightening situations. Hopefully, the situation will soon begin to improve, although I’m sure it will leave changes in its wake.

So, switching down to site news: It’s getting close to April, which means I’m getting ready for another Quarterly Bestiary! As always, I’m officially inviting you to suggest beasts you’d like covered in the future, though I’ll be happy to consider suggestions made at any time. I’ve also got one more Sunshine post, which will probably come first because I need a something to brighten my blog right now.

Also, you may have noticed a small change in my last post. I include a list of sources at the end of my posts because I want to be transparent about where I’m getting my information. However, I’ve come to realize that long list is a bit of a pain to scroll through on the way to the “like” and “share” buttons, not to mention the comments. With that in mind, I’ve decided to make the sources section collapsible. I’ve seen hints that this feature doesn’t work on all browsers, however, so I want to ask you how your experience of this new feature has been so far. Is it working? Do you like it? Please tell me if you’ve had any technical difficulties or have any opinions about it so that I can continue to improve!

Quarterly Bestiary: The Firebird: A Unique Gem or Just Another Phoenix?

Welcome to another Quarterly Bestiary! Featuring, once again, images by Bridget Sarsen!

Winter Solstice has passed, and the days begin to lengthen once more. To celebrate the return of the light, what better than a creature of brilliance like the Firebird? I had been thinking of looking into this bright Russian beast for a while. However, when I started researching, I quickly found a frequent confusion between firebirds and phoenixes. I even found websites like this one that calls the Firebird a phoenix, and this one that calls the phoenix a firebird.

So is the Firebird a phoenix? Here is what I found. Continue reading “Quarterly Bestiary: The Firebird: A Unique Gem or Just Another Phoenix?”

New Year’s Update 2020: Quarterly Bestiary, New Feature, and Cats

Hello, 2020! The New Year has arrived. What new projects are you planning? Now, I know you can start new ventures at any time during the year. In fact, I hope you do. But the start of a new year is great for drumming up motivation to renew and change with the calendar. In that spirit, I’ve got a couple of news items! Continue reading “New Year’s Update 2020: Quarterly Bestiary, New Feature, and Cats”

The Name of the Weretiger: A Quarterly Bestiary Supplement

Last week I posted a longer article on weretigers in myth and modern media. One of the headaches I discovered with these shapeshifters is that names for different types of weretigers can get very confusing. Several cultures may have vastly different names for creatures with similar descriptions. Other times I could find no names or I found the same name used for beasts that seem very different. To simplify things, I created my own broad categories.

Now, I’d like to share the list of real names I discovered. Continue reading “The Name of the Weretiger: A Quarterly Bestiary Supplement”

Seeking Suggestions for Upcoming Beasts

Hi! I hope everyone had a great Friday the 13th. That may seem like a weird thing to wish someone, but before it was dedicated to Jason Voorhees, Friday the 13th was dedicated to Venus and Freya, and it was considered lucky.¹ The Venus connection  means it was associated with love as well as death. Depending on how you’re feeling about those two things currently, knowing that may ease your anxiety about the date or increase it. Continue reading “Seeking Suggestions for Upcoming Beasts”

Beginning

Greetings, ponderers and pundits, stargazers and sarcasm-slingers! You have located Illuminating the Fool’s Mirror, a blog seeking to trace the fine threads of imagination that bind ancient myth through classic literature and on to the myriad shared dreams of modern media and culture. It’s a murky cosmos out there, a web that spins outward and back on itself again. We may get lost now and then, but sometimes it’s fun to get lost. Your guide on this journey is Ceridwen Silverhart, mythophile and metaphor tinkerer. Feel free to say my name as you wish, though as you may guess, I do so love alliteration. Continue reading “Beginning”