10 Magical Creatures from "The Ancient Magus' Bride" Anime

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The Ancient Magus’ Bride is a world of magic. It’s a world of magical creatures inspired by English, Irish, Scottish, Celtic, Welsh, and European literature, myth, and folktale of yore. The creatures come in all shapes and sizes. They may look more like animals. They may resemble human beings. They can look like a cross of both while looking quite alien. They may be absolutely adorable to see, or a little hard to stare at. Many of these creatures are quite intelligent, with the intelligent ones sporting strong personalities. They’re autonomous beings, and they often act out of their own interests -- helping those that do favors for them and tricking others that intrigue or annoy them.


In no particular order, here is a list highlighting 10 magical creatures from The Ancient Magus’ Bride. Most of these creatures are faeries, but it would definitely be a shame to not cover other notable folk that the audience encounters alongside Chise throughout the show. This list would definitely start getting unruly if I attempted to cover every magic folk. My apologies if I didn’t include your favorites.


Titania and Oberon



Titania and Oberon are introduced in The Ancient Magus’ Bride the king and queen of the fairies (or at least the monarchs of a fairy realm). Based on characters of the same name from William Shakespeare’s play, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Titania and Oberon are foils to each other, to the extent that you might wonder how the two of them agreed to become husband and wife (outside of being powerful magical beings). Titania is motherly and magnanimous. Oberon is mischievous and free-spirited. Based on their limited appearances together in the show, Titania seems to get annoyed at Oberon antics. Titania also seems to bear a grudge against Christians, likely for the roles they played at persecuting their following and displacing belief in their existences.


Banshees and Silkies



Banshees are faeries that haunt collective families and announce the death of individual members by an ethereal shrieking or wailing. In The Ancient Magus’ Bride, banshees are supposed to move on after their lamentations to haunt another family. One particular banshee, however, refused to move on after losing the host family she cherished, long after all its members have passed away -- long after their house had become a shambling wreck. Feeling pity for this poor banshee, another fairy passing by, a Spriggan, turns her into a Silky. The Spriggan encourages the new Silky to haunt a house instead of a family. No longer bound to a family for its survival, but to a house as its caretaker, a Silky is never lonely for long, so long as there’s a family in a house to live in it and call it home.


Church Grim



The Church Grim is a fairy that takes the form of a black dog, great and overgrown. The Church Grim can behave in the following ways: (1) a beast whose visage and claws are an omen and bringer of death and malice, or (2) a guardian who protects graveyards from graverobbers. Church Grims arise as fairies from the souls of once-living dogs. A dog name refused to believe his loved one was dead. He wasted away at the foot of her grave, refusing to move on, believing she was only sleeping. The dog transformed into a Church Grim in the process -- in his conviction that she would awaken if he waited long enough. This Church Grim can take the appearance of a human at will, believing at one point that he was this girl’s human brother.


It’s unclear as what the personalities of other Church Grims are like, but Ruth in particular is an especially loyal and protective boy.


The Winter and Spring Goddess



The world of The Ancient Magus’ Bride features deities of fertility. The dark haired, black attired, and visibly pregnant Winter Goddess strides the forest during the winter yule, bringing death to all who encounter her without leaving her gifts. The child-like, snow-melt robed, and softly illuminating Spring Goddess grants favors to those who left her mother offerings. The Winter Goddess and Spring Goddess are aspects of one entity. The former in winter gives birth to the latter in spring, who then matures in summer and becomes heavy with child in winter.


The archetype of the fertility goddess is the personification of the seasonal life cycle, the cyclical destitution and fertility of the earth. Her appearance and qualities are understood as feminine due to an association of life and death with the childbearing and menopausal stages of women. In doing homage to the goddess at winter with offerings, farmers who believe in her hope that the ensuing favor they generate from the goddess allows spring to return in time for them to plant crops and keep their communities fed.


Archetypes of the fertility goddess permeate through many myths, though the direct inspiration for the show’s fertility deities hails from neopagan belief.


Leánnan Sídhe



So named because of striking color of her eye pupils, Redcurrant is a Leánnan Sídhe. In The Ancient Magus’ Bride, Leánnan Sídhe are fairies that act effectively as both succubus and muse. They haunt men, embracing them with their form of love. They gift them with creative energy and talent, and in return, they siphon and consume their life energy. Their prey tends to be men who are young, and they pass away young as a result. It’s Faustian Bargain for the Romantic poet, many of whom fell victim to love sickness -- also known as tuberculosis, also known as consumption. Unlike a Faustian Bargain, their victims don’t have much say in about accepting their affection when they come knocking.


Oddly enough though, Redcurrant seems to be hovering around an old man.She insists to Chise that she isn’t in love with him though.


Cats



The cats in The Ancient Magus’ Bride can talk. They can also walk (a less surprising fact), and they have nine lives. Every successive life that cats live after they die increases the level of their intellect. The later-lived cats are intelligent they’ve developed countries and have kings like Mollie. The cats of the show and the subplot surrounding their introduction were inspired by H.P. Lovecraft’s short story “The Cats of Ulthar.” In that tale, a narrator recalls a couple in his village of Ulthar. They were malicious butcherers of cats, and it was implied they met their end by the remaining cats butchering them in turn. The cats recount a similar version of their tale, sealing away the corruption of a old cat butcherer with the lives of their kings.


Dragons



Once inhabitants everywhere that there was sky, the last of the dragons of The Ancient Magus’ Bride are now confined to spend their days in a verdant valley within remote Iceland, far from most humans’ sights. Magical creatures whose sizes can shift between small and enormous based on their desires, dragons, like cats on their later lives, can talk, are intelligent, and can live for ages at a time. From sprite curious younglings to physically infirm seniors, dragons hold a clear and anxiety-free knowledge of their mortality, striving to enjoy their long lives without any regret. In the words of Nevin, the last of the old dragons, they give thanks for the time they were able to experience life. They expire and bring about new life from their corpses, mosses, grasses, and trees.


Will o’ the Wisp



Will o’ the Wisps are fairies in The Ancient Magus’ Bride that are characterized by both their mischief and their sense of duty. They leave or magick travelers astray from the paths they patrol, and lead those spirits long lost on the terrestrial plane to a destination where they can peacefully pass on. One particular Will o’ the Wisp teleports Elias and Chise out of danger, berates a Church Grim for not performing his duties, and shepherds the souls once artificially bound to a chimera into the afterlife. They brandish lanterns powered by an otherworldly coal as their tool for leading travelers or guiding spirits on. The lantern is iconic enough in popular culture that Will o’ the Wisps are well known, albeit by another name: Jack o’ Lanterns.


Ashen Eye



This mother----er Little known is about this entity in The Ancient Magus’ Bride so far except that he is incredibly old, is exceptionally powerful, and is a consummate trickster. He issues high-stakes challenges to those he unluckily encounters or purposely picks on, and delights in watching his victims struggle through, fail to, or overcome his machinations. In one instance, Ashen Eye uses a magical pelt to turn Chise into a werefox and releases her into the wilds. In another, Ashen Eye abducts a boy and erases people’s memories of that boy’s existence after he overhears the boy’s sister screaming that she doesn’t want him as a brother.


Lizardboi



LOOK AT HIM



LOOK AT THIS LIZARDBOI



He makes recurring appearances in the show and basically does nothing but follow Chise around and look cute. He apparently has an official name or something but ---- that this name is lizardboi look at him.


In short, the world of The Ancient Magus' Bride is one of magical creatures inspired by English, Irish, Scottish, Celtic, Welsh, and European literature, myth, and folktale of yore!


Watch The Ancient Magus’ Bride now on Crunchyroll!

 

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A social scientist and history buff who dabbles in creative writing and anime analysis every now and again. If you’d like to get in touch with him or are interested in reading more of his works, ZeroReq011 has a Twitter you can follow and runs a Blog called Therefore It Is.

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