Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #folkhorror

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Earliest man established the sea to be in mysterious commune with the heavens and beyond our power to influence. Leonardo da Vinci thought that the tides to be the breathing motions of a large beast and tried to calculate the size of such a creature’s lungs. Image
Human imagination populated the world’s oceans with monstrum marinum. ImageImageImage
Some, like the mermaid, are familiar and knowable, while others remain inscrutable and of impossible scale, like the legendary Scylla and Charybdis, the six-headed serpent and the great undersea colossus whose maw formed a whirlpool that could devour a ship whole. ImageImage
Read 10 tweets

Whether they heal, harbour ghosts or commune with the gods, The Bleeding Tree looks at the trees in our world and in the folklore we create to describe it. I became fascinated with trees that ‘bleed’ whether physical, like the red sap of the El Drago Milenario... Image
or ‘dragon tree,’ to the more figurative, those that bleed in sorrow, sacrifice or accusation.
Indeed trees can bleed in evidence of crime, as recorded in one of the great New England folk legends collected by the renowned folklorist Charles M. Skinner. Skinner reports on the origin of the Micah Rood apple variety, or ‘Bloody Heart Apple’, Image
Read 9 tweets

The matter of matter; body disposal is not the only option when there are so many preservation methods for those inclined to live fast and leave a pretty corpse. Image
One Catholic tradition sought to preserve the physical state for as long as possible. These are the ‘incorruptibles,’ like Bernadette Soubirous, a miller’s daughter from Lourdes whose body has lain unravaged by time in a grotto since her death in 1879. Image
Catholicism has a strong tradition of reliquary; many pilgrimage traditions were created around body parts and bone fragments of dead saints. Image
Read 13 tweets
†hê þïl¢hårЧ mµ§† rê†åïñ †hêïr hêåЧ.
Would you eat this - the Christmas eve-eve traditional Cornish stargazy pie? There are many recipes, usually involving potato, and sometimes sand eels, mackerel, herring or dogfish, but to be a true stargazy pie the intact pilchard heads must be placed looking up at the sky,
before going in the oven.

The dish is most associated with the village of Mousehole and its annual celebration on 23rd December, known locally as Tom Bawcock’s eve.
Read 10 tweets
A few years ago All Saints Church in Hereford got funding for the erection of a cafe on a new mezzanine level. A new seating gallery had excellent lighting, all the better to illuminate detail of the magnificent intricate carvings cloaked in shadow since the 14th century! …Ah. Image
The man in the carving has appropriately been nicknamed Seamus O’Toole, and it is thought that his spirited salutation was created by a disgruntled medieval artisan. ImageImage
Stone gargoyles and decorative misericords have all sorts of symbolic meanings but there is some anecdotal evidence that the more ribald version was a final flourish of carpenters and masons scammed of their pay. ImageImage
Read 7 tweets
Trail trees are trees that have been shaped by human intention rather than environment or disease, and they have been used for centuries to mark the way through the woods across the Americas.
A network of pre-Columbian roads and trails denoted by these trees, most often oak and maple, have been well documented across First Nation territories. Their uses varied between nation and specificity of the region but may have included pointing out a fresh water source
off a main route, minerals or other resources that may have been important to Native Americans for medicinal and ceremonial purposes, or designated areas of significant importance such as council circles and gathering points.
Read 9 tweets
The mesmerising driftwood sculptures of Japanese artist Nagato Iwasaki. ImageImage
All of the figures are part of an interconnected work that Iwasaki calls simply ‘Torso’ and each have undergone a painstaking process of construction over the past 25 years. ImageImage
“Gathering bits of wood from here and there, like an insect building a nest, I create sculptures” says the artist in one of his few interviews. Driftwood of just the right shape and size to mimic a human collarbone or the curve of a pelvis Image
Read 8 tweets
I've never quite been the same since I learned about trovants. These are rocks, actual rocks, that not only 'grow' but MULTIPLY.
The most famous example can be found in the tiny village of Costeşti in Valcea County, Romania. Known locally as the 'living stones' they have been the backdrop to folktales for millennia.
Indeed they have been there much longer than people, coming into existence due to a series of earthquakes some 6 million years ago.
Read 10 tweets
During Ireland’s ferocious winter storms of 2015 a 215-year-old beech tree was uprooted by the powerful winds that ripped through the town of Collooney, County Sligo. Had it not we would have never known of the tragedy upon which the tree had grown.
Enmeshed in the tangled roots of a tree was a medieval skeleton. The upper part of the body was entangled in the roots, severed from the legs which remained in the ground.
Radiocarbon analysis determined the bones to be those of a young man between the ages of 17 and 20, who died sometime between A.D. 1030 and 1200. It was a violent death; several deep gouges were observed on his ribs and defensive wounds on his hands.
Read 5 tweets

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