A Serpent in Human Shape

The principal villains for the first eight seasons are the Goa’uld, parasitic alien snakes

Fairy-Tale Files: How Loneliness Hurts

Is loneliness worth it, then, if it sometimes leads to great works of art?”

Fairy-Tale Files: The Secret to Old Age is… Necromancy?

This tale about everybody having to die doesn’t set too well with me.

Fairy-Tale Files: Cryptographer’s Delight

King of the uncharactered, the Voynich manuscript takes cipher sleuthing to velum-unraveling heights. Antiquarian Wilfred Voynich purchased it from the Collegio Romano in 1912, his widow setting in motion a chain of bequeathments prior to its Yale arrival 57 years later. Illustrations provide the codex’s only potential clues—herbology, astronomy, cosmology, or pharmaceutical practices stemming from … Continued

Fairy-Tale Files: The Practicality of a Gargoyle

The phrase “Gothic church umbrella” doesn’t convey grotesquery, yet this was the gargoyle’s original purpose, their spouted heads diverting rainwater from building walls. We have France’s St. Romanus to thank for the legend itself, as he drove the horrific Gargouille out of his homeland. Accounts of Romanus’s methods fall between the solo (aided only by a … Continued

Fairy-Tale Files: The Flies

Unlikely to star in a fairy tale anytime soon, flies nonetheless play a role in the Grimm Brothers’ “The Brave Little Tailor.” A breakfast annoyance, seven flies are felled by the meek clothier with a single swat, his personalized belt which reads “seven in one blow” leading to a series of adventures in the garment-maker’s … Continued

Fairy-Tale Files: The Storytime Reptilian

No tour of fictional turtles is complete without mention of the Chinese Bixi

Fairy-Tale Files: Do Bears Belong in Houses?

Sometimes, house-dwelling bears and house-dwelling humans can actually seem to get along.

Fairy-Tale Files: Babes in the Wood

Once in the woods, the criminals chicken out and simply abandon the children

'It is a half-truth, one that includes what is as often as it includes what could be'

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