According to ancient Greek folklore, a person could become a wolf (or werewolf) by eating wolf and human flesh together, while in later centuries, the causes varied between supernatural curses, conception during a new moon, sleeping in the light of a full moon and consuming specific herbs. In some cases, it was believed that merely drinking water that had been touched by a wolf would be enough to effect the transformation.Know More
The moon has long been associated with mental health, or at least the deterioration thereof. Even today, despite a significant lack of supporting evidence, the belief that people act more deranged during a full moon phase survives.
It is thought that the folkloric notion of the werewolf may have been a manifestation of at the time unclassified medical conditions. Hypertrichosis, for example, causes abnormally thick facial and body hair growth, and porphyria, a sensitivity to light accompanied by symptoms of seizures and anxiety, may have been responsible for keeping people indoors during the day.
The folkloric belief in werewolves has been responsible for many executions in history — particularly during the Middle Ages when werewolves were considered the result of witchcraft. In Germany during the 16th century, for instance, Peter Stubbe was tortured and decapitated for his alleged use of a wolf skin belt to turn himself into a werewolf and kill people.Learn more about Folklore
A black moon describes either the second new moon of a calendar month, a calendar month without a new moon, a calendar month without a full moon, or the third new moon of a season that has four new moons.Full Answer >
The moral of "The Fisherman and His Wife" is that a person must be thankful for what he has and not always want more, lest it become impossible for him ever to be satisfied. Those who do not appreciate the small things likely do not have the capacity to appreciate anything and are destined to live a life deprived of joy.Full Answer >
The moral of "Rip Van Winkle" is that life passes by with or without a person and that change is inevitable. The story also shows that a person will pay dearly when they try to avoid change; in many ways, Irving is asking his readers to be active participants in their own lives and enjoy each moment.Full Answer >
The expression “silly goose” refers to a person who acts in a childish, foolish but somewhat comical way. This term originates from several sources. The entry in the Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable states, “A foolish or ignorant person is called a goose because of the alleged stupidity of this bird." The Samuel Johnson dictionary describes geese as, “Large waterfowl proverbially noted, I know not why, for foolishness."Full Answer >