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This collection contains ten stories, which convey the sense of wonder of the world of fairies, where the marvellous and unexpected can always happen. Among the stories are 'Princess Marie', 'The Leprechaun and the Giant', 'Tim the Tailor' and 'The Greedy Landlord'. The leprechaun is the shoemaker of the Irish fairy kingdom. He is a solitary, fun-loving and very crafty fairy. Often he is seen sitting cross-legged with a tiny hammer in his hand, working on a fairy shoe. Those who have been lucky enough to catch a glimpse of him have described his appearance. He is no bigger than three feet tall and sometimes as small as twelve inches. Usually, he wears a suit of green and has fine leather shoes adorned with silver buckles. Sometimes he wears a cap with a feather. The leprechaun is the keeper of the crock of gold at the end of the rainbow and he knows where all the wealth of the world is buried. If you are lucky enough to catch him, you must keep your eyes on him at all times and not allow him to distract your attention or he will disappear. If he does not outsmart you he can make you very wealthy and make your wishes come true!
Bairbre McCarthy was born in Ennis in County Clare but now lives in New York State. She has been writing and collecting stories for many years. She conducts storytelling workshops as part of an arts-in-education programme and gives performances based on her writing, to musical accompaniment. Bairbre is also the author of An Introduction to Irish Grammar and Favourite Irish Legends (Mercier Press).
- Mercier Press, January 1998
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