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   by The Notorious Doctor Zoom Zoom

 ELSIE WRIGHT (1901-1986) AND  FRANCES GRIFFITHS (1907-1988)

    Elsie and Frances were not really  occultists, but included here because of  their contribution to the superstitious  belief in fairies. Fairies had been part of  European  folklore for sometime.  Usually fairies were thought of as  things to be feared. 

    In some legends,  fairies would steal human babies, or  bring about death. By the late 19th  -early 20th century, however, there  was a romanticizing of Pagan myths,  and the harsher aspects of fairy lore  were forgotten. There was also an  occult revival going on, too, which  aided Elsie and Frances in their hoax.

     In 1917 These two cousins fooled many people into believing fairies were real by merely cutting out pictures of fairies from a popular children's book, Princess Mary's Gift Book, and photographing themselves with them. 

    Even though experts who examined the photos concluded they were obvious fakes (the fairies wore the latest Paris fashions of the day in some photos!), many people who wanted to believe swallowed the lies whole.

     One such dupe was a Golden Dawn magician named Sir Arthur Conan Doyle...ironically a man who made his fortune writing the Sherlock Holmes novels; about a detective who was nobody’s fool and used flawless logic to solve crimes.  Doyle allowed the girls complete access to his camera in his test, and was not allowed to see the girls actually take the photograph of the fairies. Nevertheless, he declared the photo that resulted genuine, and didn’t seem the girls’ request for secrecy unusual!

     The pair continued to insist the photos were genuine even well into adulthood, and it seemed there were many adults (mostly occult types, obviously) who wanted to believe too. 

     Then in 1981 and mid 1982 respectively, Frances and Elsie, admitted that the infamous pictures were fakes. Frances said, "My heart always sinks when I look at [the fake fairy pictures]. When I think of how it's gone all round the world. I don't see how people could believe they're real fairies. I could see the backs of them and the hatpins when the photo was being taken." 

    They later recanted and claimed they first four pictures were fakes, but the fifth picture was real...honest (which means they lied about lying...sound familiar?). For some reason they justhappened to snap a picture of a real fairy after four fakes? Yeah right. 

     Nevertheless, many people claim to really believe in fairies, and there is even a branch of Wicca devoted to them , known as "Fairy Wicca".  it seems to be inspired in large part by the Wright-Griffiths hoax.




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