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Yeah, that’s a bug

Long story short: Englishwoman hears the roar of a motorcycle, then the smack of something against her front window, examines the CCTV footage and decides she was visited by a fairy.

Um, no.

But you know what I immediately thought, right? Cottingly Fairies is what.

Long story short: during WWI, two little girls in England took pictures of themselves in the garden surrounded by terrible paper cutouts of fairies. For some reason, quite a lot of people believed they were real, included Arthur Conan Doyle. Astonishingly, this was still the subject of controversy when I first got into photography in the Seventies.

I’ve never understood why. Honestly, they’re terrible fakes. They’re not even good illustrations (and so much of their era). I was always particularly struck by #4, in which our fairy sports a modern Flapper bob. I mean, geez — is that a Marcel wave?

Anyway, one of the little girls confessed in 1981 (when she was no longer a little girl, duh) that she’d traced the fairies out of a 1915 picture book, thereby laying to rest one of the dumbest controversies ever.

October 22, 2014 — 7:58 pm
Comments: 20