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Our Fairies Are Different

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Even in the same game, they're different.

Theo: You're pretty hard-boiled, Tinker Bell.
Applecore: Call me that name again and you'll be wondering how your bollocks wound up lodged in your windpipe — from below. Just because we don't get to your side of things much anymore doesn't mean we don't know anything. 'If you believe in fairies, clap your hands!' If you believe in fairies, kiss my rosy pink arse is more like it. Now are you going to shut your gob or not?

Fairies today are thought of as little or human sized Winged Humanoid with butterfly wings, that fly around in a sea of sparkles, and have magical powers (including granting wishes). This is not the original concept; genuine folkloric fairies are alien, dangerous, powerful, and not always winged.

Although these vary depending on the story (hence the trope title). Much like Demons, what classifies as "Fairy" is often as varied as "Mammal" or "Alien". Four standard forms stand out, however:

  • A tiny humanoid, usually with insect wings, between one and twelve inches tall. Variations other than size include skin or hair colors, the type of wings they have, what they wear (if anything), and often whether or not they generate their own light. These are usually called some variation of "fairy", "sprite", or "pixie".
  • A small, often old-looking or childlike, humanoid between one and three feet tall. Leprechauns are the most common type seen, but other types such as brownies, redcaps or spriggans are often common. Gnomes and even goblins may also fall into this category.
  • An inhumanly beautiful/graceful human-sized humanoid, often with pointed ears. Usually an elf in all but name with more overt magical nature or ability than your "standard" fantasy elves. Sometimes they are that work's version of elves. Other common variations are water (often called nereids or undines) or tree/forest fey (usually called nymphs or dryads). Others may have animal features, such as a stag's head, goat legs, or a fox's tail, or plant features like wooden skin or vines wrapping around their body (especially nymphs/dryads). These always seem to be near or at the top of the fairy totem pole. They'll usually be called some variation of "fae" or "sidhe"note .
  • Animal-like beings that often verge on Animalistic Abominations, typically with a taste for human flesh or souls, or, barring that, are harbingers of doom or bringers of disease and hardship. More benign ones may be benevolent (or, at the very least, not actively malevolent), but, like most fae, should be approached with great caution and a good deal of knowledge of what you're getting yourself into. They are often also shapeshifters, though this is not a hard-and-fast rule, while others may be Mix-and-Match Critters or have some anthropomorphic traits. Common examples include pucas, water horses, and barghests/black dogs.

  • They also may or may not be exclusively female.

Regardless of size, many fairies also have wings, usually iridescent or butterfly-like. Whether or not they have wings, and what kind they have, are often another difference between fairy species'.

But these are hardly the full extent of what Fairies can be. Just as Dragons can encompass many related creatures, fairies can include other mythological/fantasy creatures such as satyrs, nymphs, merfolk, and even trolls, ogres and giants. They often hang around with animals (especially Unicorns), which might possibly be Fay (or the equivalent) themselves.

A common form is a Fairy Godmother, who gives characters help with wishes. Although modern stories will heavily add Be Careful What You Wish For.

Borrowing from British mythology, Fairies are often divided into Courts. The most common are the Seelie or Summer Court, and the Unseelie or Winter Court. Summer fairies are usually depicted are being more benevolent (for a given value of benevolent), and tend to include types like Sprites, nymphs, satyrs and high elves. Winter fairies on the other hand are typically seen as wicked, and include types like redcaps, boggarts, trolls, and dark elves. This isn't always a case of Always Chaotic Evil, however, and it's just as possible for a summer fairy to kidnap a child as a winter fairy is to save you from a blizzard. Some works play it straight, while others see it as lighter and darker shades of Blue and Orange.

Fairy Tales often involve fairies, at least they do nowadays, but that term comes from Madame d'Aulnoy's Les Contes de Fées. The original folk tales seldom involved them, and even if they did, it was only in Western European folklore.note 

A Super-Trope to:

  • Alien Fair Folk: Either fairies who look like aliens, or aliens mistaken for fairies.
  • The Fair Folk: These kind of fairies may very well not be harmless, and this can range from impulsively acting without consequence to outright wickedness.
  • Fairy Companion: A fairy that hangs around a particular character, most often giving help in various ways. The quality of the help may vary.
  • Fairy Dragons: Diminutive dragons with fairy wings, often directly linked to fairies in some manner.
  • Fairy in a Bottle: For when playing high-stakes roulette by trapping a demon or a genie just won't do....
  • Fairy Godmother: A fairy patron who grants a limited number of wishes and looks out for a particular character, but doesn't generally stick around to do so.
    • Fairy Devilmother: Pretty much same as the above, but on Evil. So, even if the effects of any wish isn't technically an outright curse, it's still going to be as dangerous as one.
  • Fairy Sexy: Smokin' hot fairies; actual fire optional.
  • Fairy Trickster: This or any of its sister tropes, and The Trickster.
  • Fauns and Satyrs: Wingless, goat-legged fairies notorious for their appetites.
  • House Fey: Brownies, hobgoblins (traditional ones), house elves, Christmas elves... all domestically inclined, usually small, often helpful, always protective and not to be taken lightly. Or insulted.
  • Leprechaun: The most common Irish, as well as male fairy in fiction.
  • Our Gnomes Are Weirder: The largely Forgotten Fair Folk who tend be short, greedy, and weird.
  • Our Nymphs Are Different: While strictly speaking originating in an entirely different mythical tradition, nymphs of various sorts are often classified as fey in fantasy settings.
  • Our Pixies Are Different: Wings, size, glow, abilities, clothes, weapons and meanness may vary.
  • Peeve Goblins: Beings (often but not always fairies) made up to explain life's inconveniences.
  • Spark Fairy: No need for a phone or a flashlight with these dots of light flying about. Beware possible heightened fire risk or dazzling.
    • Will-o'-the-Wisp: Also balls of a usually colder brand of ethereal light. Can be used as guides, if you like. Bad, bad, bad idea, though.
  • Tooth Fairy: Leave a tooth under a pillow as you sleep and gain a coin. And, perhaps, free Nightmare Fuel.
  • The Wild Hunt: While many cultural variations exist, British Isles variants are almost always made up of fairies.

See also Our Elves Are Different, for a type of fictional creatures originally closely tied — or synonymous with — fairies but which in modern fiction has become something else entirely.

Compare Our Angels Are Different and Our Mermaids Are Different.

Not to be confused with a euphemism for gay men.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Berserk: The Fairy Companions Puck and Ivalera (stated to be of a race of Elves) are revealed to actually be a sort of wind spirit.
  • In Cardcaptor Sakura, many of the spirit forms of the Clow Cards appear humanoid, with a majority of them resembling elves or fairies.
  • Delicious in Dungeon: it's explained in supplementary material that the fairies which accompany some of the Canaries are a type of homunculus and do not appear to be sapient. They're used as a form of magical walkie-talkie; anything said to a fairy will be telepathically passed along to another fairy of choice, which relays the message. An omake has Marcille discovering fairies are made out of semen, various herbs, horse manure, and other items, which is fermented into a blob-like fetus that needs to fed blood every day for forty weeks straight before it's viable. She's understandably revolted by the process and is immediately turned off from wanting one.
  • Digimon:
    • Digimon Adventure has Palmon's Ultimate Form — Lilymon. She takes the form of a pink flower pixie with the power to shoot energy out of a "Flower Cannon". Her Mega Form — Rosemon — is quite similar though overlaps with Lady of War.
    • Digimon Frontier has Izumi Orimoto (Zoe in the English dub), whose Human Spirit form is Fairymon (or Kazemon).
  • Durarara!! focuses heavily on a Dullahan who rides a headless horse disguised as a motorbike around modern day Japan.
  • The five main characters of Fairy Ranmaru are all fairies who are disguised as humans. As fairies, they don't look much different from humans aside from having wings and Pointy Ears. The fairy world they hail from is ruled by the Fairy Queen and runs on a Hive Caste System, with each of the fairies hailing from one of the five fairy clans.
  • Hetalia: Axis Powers: A few of the tiny humanoid variety appear. They, along with the other magical creatures of the world, are Invisible to Normals, and they're the close friends of both England and Norway.
  • Humanity Has Declined takes place in a future where fairies have become Earth's dominant species. They're about 10 centimeters tall, don't have wings, grin stupidly constantly, have undefined supernatural powers, and really like sweets. Oh, and they're apparently evolved from normal humans (who are still around, but dying out).
  • Lady!!: Peter Pan is a fairy with many tinkerbells, and he adores children and wants to befriend them. He can even turn ordinary humans into fairies.
  • Modest Heroes: The Kanini & Kanino story briefly shows fairies with dragonfly wings and tails flying above the river the titular characters live in. Given how they find a detached wing underwater and use it to distract a large trout from eating them, it's implied that the fairies also get snatched up by fish on occasion.
  • Persia, the Magic Fairy: The fairies live in a land called Lovely Dream, where dreams are made. They have magic that allows them to do almost anything, and can apparently transfer it to humans like Persia. The Fairy Queen, however, is a bit of a pompous bitch who threatens to turn Persia's friends Riki and Gaku into girls if she doesn't help her.
  • In the Pretty Cure franchise, all fairies are different. They don't even look remotely human, being Ridiculously Cute Critters instead, and every series shows another kind of fairies from different worlds. Most fairies can transform into something, e.g. Transformation Trinkets or humans, and some of them have special powers to support the heroines. A few mascots are able to fight, and two of them are even heroines themselves.
  • The Seven Deadly Sins: King and his sister, Elaine, are long living child-like wingless humanoids capable of levitating themselves and other things. King, though, can transform himself into an older, fatter version of himself as he sees it as a form of respect when dealing with royals and others.
  • Soul Eater: The fairies that live in the cave where Excalibur resides. Like everyone else they can't stand him.
  • Sword Art Online: The second story arc introduces an MMO called ALfheim Online, with all players playing as fairies. By the end of the arc, everyone from SAO is playing, with each player using a different race:
    • Kirito selects a Spriggan, a race that specializes in illusory magic and treasure-finding (making this race fairly unpopular, since neither skill is useful in combat).
    • Leafa, the second story arc's deuteragonist, is a Sylph, and as such specializes in wind-based magic and high agility.
    • Asuna plays an Undine. Her race's forte is support and healing magic and underwater combat. She also has an alternate Sylph character.
    • Lizbeth selects Leprechaun as her race. While having no combat specializations, it's an ideal class for item crafters.
    • Silica plays a Cait Sith. Aside from being agile, Cait Siths are the only race in the game that can be beast tamers.
    • Klein rolls a Salamander, specialists in fire-based magic and possessing naturally-enhanced strength.
    • Agil picks Gnome as his race. Gnomes specialize in earth-based magic and, among the other fairy races, are quite massive.
  • In Wandaba Style, one of the characters sees invisible fairies that look like small, bald, musclebound, winged men.

    Asian Animation 

    Card Games 
  • Magic: The Gathering: Faeries appear in multiple sets and planes as diminutive insect-winged humanoids. They are typically aligned with Blue, the color of magic, thought and mentalism.
    • In Ravnica, faeries are mischievous Blue-aligned tricksters who often play pranks on other natives of the plane.
    • In Lorwyn, they're often particularly insect-like, with insectoid legs and antennas, and are cruel and mean-spirited tricksters. Unlike other depictions, they don't live particularly long, often just a few years, and spend their lives pursuing amusement, often at the expense of others. They're particularly fascinated by the dreams of other races, which they frequently harvest. The faeries and their Queen, Oona, are also the only creatures not affected by the Great Aurora that periodically turns the idyllic Lorwyn into the dark and haunted Shadowmoor and back. There's also a variant of faeries named groundlings, which do not have wings.
    • In Eldraine, faeries vary widely in size and are divided into three types. Meddling fae are aligned with White, human-sized and very morally-minded, wandering around human lands to help or punish people based on their actions. Thieving fae, the most common type, are aligned with Blue, no larger than an apple and delight in stealing objects. Prankster fae, aligned with Black, are the size of human children, have batlike wings and yellow eyes, and are particularly malicious in nature. Regardless of type, they all live in the Wilds and are opposed to the five knightly courts.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!: "Fairy" is one of the twenty-odd monster types in the game, and encompasses fairies of all kinds as well as angels (as that was indeed the type's name in Japanese). It's also the go-to categorization for various otherworldly or supernatural creatures, from Lovecraftian alien abominations to crystalline constructs to magical idol singers.

    Comic Books 

    Fairy Tales 
  • The elves of Hans Christian Andersen's stories are pretty standard winged human-type fairies, except that they're very tiny, being variously the size of a human thumb ("Thumbelina"), to knee-high to a mouse, to literally microscopic. They also have particularly Bizarre Taste in Food, using hemlock juice as salad dressing, for instance.
  • In "Heart of Ice (Andrew Lang)", fairies are mostly humanoid, have reality-warping powers -can change shape, transform people and objects into animals, cast curses...-, and are prone to meddle with human affairs (whether humans like or not).
  • In Franz Xaver von Schönwerth's "The Three Flowers", Katie's brothers find a wood sprite in a cottage in the middle of a vast forest. The unnamed sprite is a tiny and shy humanoid creature who is afraid of humans and tries to stay out of their way. Schönwerth includes a brief description of wood sprites according to German folktales: "Wood sprites, or forest sprites, are tiny creatures that make their homes near hearths. Their clothing is made of spun moss that hangs in ropelike strands from trees. We think of them as enchanted beings hounded by phantom hunters. They live together as married couples and bear children. Their enemies are the phantom hunters, who rage through the lands like wild beasts during autumnal storms. The wood sprites' only protection against them is to take refuge on a tree stump that has three crosses carved into it."
  • In "Nine Bags Of Gold", house elves are small magical humanoid creatures who live beneath human houses, keeping themselves hidden from adult menfolk (albeit they like befriending and even teaching children). Although clever and benevolent, they are tricksters who are not above of making people ill to further their goals.
  • "Reygoch": Curlylocks is a human-sized fairy who lives over the clouds and owns a flying veil and a magic bag containing pearls which she can turn into anything.

    Fan Works 
  • In The Blue Blur of Termina, fairies are brightly colored winged humanoids around Sonic's general size, instead of the tiny, winged orbs of light from the original game.
  • Child of the Storm has the vaguely Tolkienian Light Elves of Alfheim — to the point where Prince Faradei is described as the in-universe inspiration for Legolas — and the Faerie Courts of The Dresden Files, who are a fairly quintessential example of The Fair Folk, with even the 'nicer' Summer Fae being a bit alien. They aren't related — the former were pre-existing before the foundation of Yggdrasil, so over a million years old. The latter, on the other hand, were a prehistoric human population that found its way into the Nevernever and slowly evolved not just to use magic, but to essentially be one with it.
  • The Crystal Court: Instead of being aliens, the gems are presented as different kinds of fairies, their powers depending on what Court they belong to.
  • Homecoming, 2026: The fae have Pointy Ears, as the only one that appears does.
  • In Keepers of the Elements, fairies are magical females that can transform into their own unique fairy forms. The Keepers themselves are this, but with Elemental Powers thrown in as well.
  • Lily from Resonance Days has all the hallmarks of modern depictions of fairies, being an inhumanly beautiful elf-like woman with gossamer wings. She's even the head of a hidden faction who live in a forest! She's actually a witch, a former Magical Girl (who in this setting function like a Human Subspecies) who lost her memories in death and retains one inhuman trait from her old form, and her witch remnant happens to make her look like a fairy. And like The Fair Folk, her kindness and beauty is all a front hiding her true nature as a callous slaver and drug dealer who uses her Compelling Voice to turn her victims into lovestruck slaves to her every whim.
  • Their Midnight Revels: There are some differences in Miranda and Ariel's interactions with Thomas and Edith that are contrary to typical folklore portrayals. For example, nothing goes wrong when Edith and Thomas eat the food in Faerie, perhaps because they are enchanted already, or because Miranda and Ariel swore that they were under their magical protection, nothing would happen to them. Also Miranda and Ariel make it clear that nothing is being done with Edith or Thomas' free will. They ask them to join the Revels and later ask them to remain in Faerie letting them know all of the consequences beforehand. While O'Brien mentions the possibility that Sybil's child may be a changeling, one look shows that he is not, perhaps because Bobby was not taken by either his own free will or his parents'. Also, Miranda and Ariel’s characters evolve when they realize that they love Edith and Thomas.

    Films — Animation 
  • Disney:
    • Cinderella: The fairy godmother appears as a kindly older woman with no wings and seems to have to sing to get her magic to work (or at least say the magic words "bibidi bobidi boo").
    • Peter Pan: Tinker Bell is of the small winged kind, and includes elements such as Clap Your Hands If You Believe. Disney Fairies focuses chiefly on her and others like herself, which are referred to as "pixies" or (when male) "sparrow men".
    • Pinocchio: The blue fairy appears as a full-sized woman with exceptionally large wings. Naturally she's dressed in blue.
    • Sleeping Beauty: The fairies are shorter than the average human but larger than dwarves, all take the forms of sugary older women. They have wings but they can make those disappear. It appears they can't do magic without their wands. Word of God claimed that Maleficent is also a fairy — one that takes the form of a green-skinned horned sorceress.
  • FernGully: The Last Rainforest: Fairies (or "tree spirits," as they call themselves), who serve as the guardians of the rainforest, are reminiscent of Tinker Bell, in terms of design.
  • In Shrek, fairies are all-female and can be human-sized or tiny.
  • Strange Magic: The fairies look like attractive humans with butterfly wings. They're very small, except the film operates on their scale. The have knights who can fly despite being fully armored. They live in a kingdom with other sapient races and seem to be the ruling class.
  • Wizards has human(ish)-sized elves with wings, elves without wings, and tiny winged fairies, too.
  • In The King's Beard, fairies are a Mage Species of humanoids with pointy ears and small dragonfly wings, who seemingly live openly among humans, being seen as unusual, but not that remarkable. As his name implies, Sophie's father Wizzy is a Wizard Classic, but he's still considered a fairy. As an additional wrinkle, a fairy's wand is an Amulet of Dependency for them, and they die if separated from it for too long — even though it is very much possible for an unscrupulous human to steal a fairy's wand and use it for themselves.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Dark Crystal, all female Gelflings have fairy wings.
  • FairyTale: A True Story is (loosely) based on the Cottingley Fairies.
  • Godzilla: The Shobijin, Mothra's twin fairy companions, stand about six inches tall and are able to teleport short distances as well as understand what the monsters are saying... oh, and they can summon Mothra as well to aid them. In the "Return of Mothra" films, they are accompanied by Fairy Mothra, essentially a toy-sized Mothra that acts as a guardian and transport.
  • Labyrinth: The fairies look like your stereotypical little magical flying sparkly things, but they bite. Sarah thought they were kind and wish-granting and was surprised and horrified to see Hoggle coming after them with an insecticide gun.
  • Leapin Leprechauns: Fairies appear prominently. In Spellbreaker: Secret of the Leprechauns, their queen joins the main cast of Leprechauns in their quest.
  • Maleficent: "Fairy" is used to identify any magical creature that inhabits the Moors. Fairies range from Winged Humanoids like the title character to small pixies to Plant People, and all manner of water, dew, and stone fae. Like in actual folklore, Cold Iron burns them and is their one true weakness, a fact which is a major plot point.
  • Pan's Labyrinth:
    • Fairies that look like flying praying mantises... which can shapeshift into more human-like shape when shown a picture of what they're "supposed" to look like.
    • The Pale Man, a monstrous, child-devouring fae.
  • Willow has a scene with a whole swarm of tiny, glowing fairies... and their enormous, hovering queen, Cherlindrea.

  • In Amagi Brilliant Park, the vast majority of the workers at the titular theme park are fairies. Some of them look like cute, bipedal talking animals (which they cover up by pretending to be people in mascot costumes), while others appear mostly human, and all of them have magical abilities of some kind. Their existence depends on keeping the park open so that the energy from people's happiness can keep them alive.
  • Angelology: The Anakim, servants of the Nephilim, are short, albeit human-sized, and of delicate build with yellow eyes and insectile wings, as opposed to the avian ones of the Nephilim.
  • Artemis Fowl:
    • "Fairy" is a catch-all term for all non-human sapients who refer to themselves as "the People", which includes centaurs and demons, as well as unicorns before their extinction, as well as more obviously fey creatures like elves, pixies, sprites, gnomes, Gremlins, goblins and dwarves. Only sprites have natural wings (batlike ones, notably); other species have built mechanical ones, and they're a metre tall on average, although one character is said to be "barely half a metre" tall, on one occasion they're able to find clothes that fit a 13-year-old human (probably somewhere around 1.5 metres), so there's obviously a decent range, as with humans.
    • In most People, magic gives healing ability, invisibility, hypnotism, and the ability to speak any language; only a few, called warlocks, can use it for anything more complicated, like playing with the flow of time. They also have very strict rules they must follow to use their magic. They have to perform certain rituals to recharge their magical energies, and forfeit their magical ability when they break certain rules. Each species also has certain unique qualities, such as sprite's wings, demonic metamorphosis, and dwarven Fartillery. The ability to speak any language, while perhaps helped along by a bit of magic, seemingly comes from the fact that the People's Gnomish is the ancestor of all languages (including American Dog).
    • It's also noted that all of the fairy species evolved from pterosaurs towards the end of the Cretaceous. The presence of bony spurs on their shoulder blades is given as proof of long-vanished wings, although this makes very little sense when considering that pterosaur wings were modified arms, not an additional set of limbs.
  • Bones of Faerie has faeries that are humanoids with powers. Though not immortal, they have a longer life span, and can be identified by their white hair.
  • Book of Imaginary Beings: Fairies are beautiful but mischievous beings that appear in legends all over the world. They can be the same size as people, taller or no more than three feet tall. They kidnap people and imprison them underground, and the Italian fata morgana creates mirages with which to confuse sailors and make them run aground. While they may take mortal lovers, they will often kill their partners once this whim passes. They are fond of song, music and the color green.
  • Chronicles of the Emerged World: The fairies — folletti, in Italian — are diminutive winged humanoids very closely connected to magic and nature, and which make their homes in forests where other races do not go. They're a declining species in the series' time, as the Tyrant has destroyed most of the forests where they live and armies on both sides of the war are in the habit of systematically hunting them to force them to be scouts, jesters or mascots.
  • Clandestine Daze: The Aellisar are a modernized 21st century society which employs covert agents to influence events in the human world. They have their own countries, technology, and Spy Speak.
  • Discworld:
    • Strictly speaking ,the Nac Mac Feegle, being small humanoid beings from Fairyland, probably count as fairies. They prefer "Pictsies". Several other weird beings that are probably fairies appear in The Wee Free Men, mostly based on Richard Dadd's painting "The Fairy Feller's Master Stroke".
    • Discworld mythology also counts any supernatural being who exists to bring something or take it away as a fairy. The Tooth Fairy is the most famous, but Hogfather introduces the Hair Loss Fairy, the Veruca Gnome, and various others. In the same book Ridcully off-handedly mentions "them little buggers that live in flowers, used to collect 'em myself as a lad". The Tooth Fairy, meanwhile, mostly employs humans to collect teeth these days, though their actual species is boogeyman.
    • The actual Fairies, so-called, are portrayed in Lords and Ladies and are very much The Fair Folk; people are afraid of them, they are very dangerous, and they have a Queen and King reminiscent of Titania and Oberon in some ways, and horned gods like Cernunnos in others.
    • This trope in itself is actually a major plot device in The Science of Discworld II: Fairies, as described above, are horrendous monsters that prey on human imagination from their parasite universe, but their intervention is needed to give the humans of our Earth the spark of creativity that gets civilization started. However, allowing them to keep interfering results in Earth being locked in Medieval Stasis, with reason and the scientific method never catching on. The solution? Make sure that William Shakespeare writes A Midsummer Night's Dream, which permanently changes the human perception of fairies to be comical and harmless, rendering them incapable of influencing us further.
  • Domina: The fey are insane people who use the toy maker to make monsters. They also apparently actually think they're Celtic fairies, and lapse into Irish when angry.
  • In The Dresden Files, Faerie is more of a descriptor for certain kinds of creatures from the spirit world, particularly the ones that originate from the region called, well, Faery. The most prominent of the fay races is the incredibly humanoid, achingly beautiful, frighteningly amoral Sidhe (pronounced as "She"). Others run the gamut from tiny, pizza-loving pixies, to hulking trolls, to centaurs and humanoid Billy Goats Gruff, and even possibly Santa Claus. Everything that shows up in the books that's not a mortal, vampire, deity, or demon is likely a kind of Faerie. All of them are burned by iron. Of course, to the Sidhe specifically, being called a "Fairy" is considered to be a slur, similar to calling a human an "ape".
  • Eccentric Circles: Aelvirum is careful to point out that he's an elf, not a fairy.
  • In Elfstruck, she makes a ticking noise like a clock and her wings are silver and crystal, with visible gearwork inside.
  • "Ever After" by Susan Palwick is about a fairy godmother who takes a young woman under her care. The girl is well aware of the Cinderella type myths and is looking forward to finding a prince to marry. The twist comes when we find out that the "fairy godmother" is actually a vampire who is changing the girl into her vampire daughter.
  • In Everworld, fairies are a Proud Merchant Race; Fairyland seems to be the financial hub of Everworld and is one of its ostensibly nicer kingdoms, mainly because the fairies keep things pretty for the tourists. The fairies themselves look like twelve-year-old humans, but also have Super-Speed. They seem to favor archery and can be employed as bodyguards.
  • Fablehaven: Fairies are the standard tiny, winged and female humanoids; although most have the usual dragonfly and insect wings, some have those of beetles, locusts, bats and birds. They also have aa rather alien moral system and are ruled by a Fairy Queen who is in fact an elder unicorn. If kept indoors overnight, they will be transformed into hideous, wingless imps; it's revealed in the last book that there used to be male fairies once, but they were all transformed into the first imps.
  • Most fairies in The Faerie Queene are pretty average humans and elves, except they are more beautiful, magical, and private than your average folk. Most of the "faerie's" we see are knights and royals (like the unseen titular queen), and it's not until in Book IV that meet a proper one in Agape, mother of the noble triplets and friend of the Fates.
  • A Fantasy Attraction has a fairy popping in to steal a cookie, and a pixie causing trouble is also mentioned.
  • Flower Fairies: The titular fairies are the standard "tiny winged humanoid" but resemble their flower in appearance and personality (for instance, the Buttercup fairy is cheerful and "sunny"). Basically very small dryads.
  • Forest of Boland Light Railway: There are two types of fairy: the benevolent cowsies and the ugly, malevolent goblins.
  • Harry Potter: Fairies are non-intelligent creatures that, while humanoid, have lifecycles akin to insects, laying eggs and then metamorphosing from larvae. They have weak magic which can be used to ward off predators and are very vain; wizards often use them as decorations the same way that Muggles might catch fireflies in a jar for light. The good press Muggles give them is a matter of some confusion to wizards.
  • In The Iron King by Julie Kagawa, faeries are born from the dreams of humanity and sustained by humans and other fey remembering them. This leads to you having not just the traditional fey (The Fair Folk) represented by the Summer (Seelie) and Winter (Unseelie) Courts, but the Iron Fey that named the series. The Iron fey are born from dreams of science and technology, of innovation and industry, and thus are not only immune to iron, but are essentially walking faerie krptonite. They also do not try to capture you in favors as much as the "oldblooded" fey, as they call the older fey species. Ferrum, their first king, was born when mankind first started to forge iron.
  • John Golden: Fairies can create pocket dimensions in computer networks. This necessitates humans called "Debuggers" physically entering them in order to slay the fae within. Otherwise they might play havoc with the data around them — or steal the souls of users.
  • Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell takes The Fair Folk and adjusts them to fit the Georgian-era setting. The basic concept, as one of the many easy-to-miss footnotes explains, is that logic and magical ability are diametrically opposed; humans have great powers of logic and very little magical skill, while Faeries have tremendous magical power but most of them would be considered severely mentally ill by human standards. Accordingly, they don't even need wings since they can travel wherever on Earth they want via the King's Roads, and they wear clothes that are made of broken dreams or are "the color of heartbreak" or that sing or scream. They also have tremendous powers that no human can fight while simultaneously having a wide variety of Weaksauce Weaknesses, and are shown to stay out of human affairs less for the standard reasons than because they just don't care — they'd rather be at their all-night balls. In other words, they're a Shadow Archetype of what human British society was like at the time.
  • J. R. R. Tolkien:
    • In The Hobbit, the word "fairy" is occasionally used, but seems to be synonymous with elf, much as The Hobbit refers to "goblins" where the same creatures in The Lord of the Rings are called "orcs".
      • It's possible Tolkien intended for Hobbits themselves to have some traits of faeries — a race of little people living where humans cannot see, with an uncanny knack for going unseen and a close kinship with the earth — are all traits common in older (read "pre-Disney") faeries. Meanwhile the Elves got the depiction of a forest-dwelling, Inhumanly Beautiful Race, which were the other most common traits. He seems to have dropped the child-stealing and Cold Iron bits altogether.
    • In On Fairy-Stories, Tolkien describes the little and winged conception as the sophisticated and literary creature, not rooted in folklore.
  • Katabasis: The fae are a species of shapeshifters which use voice mimicry to hunt humans, however they are also sentient and can have relationships with their supposed prey.
  • The fairies in Lady Cottington's Pressed Fairy Book and its sequels by Terry Jones and Brian Froud are small winged humanoids, ranging from minuture humans to more amphibious or goblin-like creatures. Their most unusual characteristic is that, if you shut a book on them in the same way as pressing a flower, a psychic image is recorded on the paper, while the actual fairy is completely unharmed. (At least, that's what the text claims. Whether the images themselves entirely support this is another matter.)
  • The Last Dragon Chronicles: The Fain are mistaken for fairies by the toddler Alexa. ("Fainies") It's a bit of a twist, considering that they're thought beings and so they don't have an actual form without a host.
  • Malediction Trilogy has faerie, who are shapeshifters, meaning they can appear perfectly beautiful or extremely horrifying, depending on their whim. They use powerful magic, are basically immortal and can travel through worlds and dimensions. They can be harmed only by iron and their only weakness is gold. And the pure faerie look at their tainted cousins (trolls trapped in human world) with contempt.
  • Merry Gentry's fey relations resemble the Fair Folk of the Old World in name, power, appearance and moral ambiguity. But with that special LKH twist.
  • The Mortal Instruments: The fairies are one of four known races of downworldlers, but they're considered the strangest of them.
    • They are considered the common descendants of angels and demons. In general, they are as beautiful as angels for that reason, but at the same time as evil as demons. However,m the books also show less beautiful fairies, and only very few of them are really as vicious as demons.
    • There are generally two groups of fairies. Some of them look very inhuman and have distinct features of animals and plants, almost always humanoid. The other group, the nobles among the fairies, look much more human-like. More like the third type (see above). They resemble typical elves, but often have horns, claws, wings, tails, or other animal features, and sometimes even plant characteristics. In some cases they look just like elves, except that they have unusual hair, skin or eye colors. In addition, they are also considered very pretty.
    • They organize themselves in royal courts (Seelie and Unseelie), but most fairies move around alone, without belonging to a certain royal court. Etiquette and decency are very important to them.
    • They are also known for their cruel sense of humor, and for being particularly insidious. Often, they offer a pact and their magic to a person, but later put it in. They cannot lie, but they formulate their words in such a way that there are loopholes. Because they can become hundreds of years old, they gain a lot of wisdom over time, as well as guile.
    • They are physically very strong, and they also have sharp senses. In addition they have a magic, which is almost unique, and can be very powerful. They often use their magic to pretend to be human, but some humans still recognize they.
    • They also have several weaknesses. Cold iron, rowan wood and salt weaken they. Likewise, someone can gain power over a fairy when he knows their true name.
    • Fairies are slow to multiply, and so that their bloodlines do not weaken, they often exchange human children for their own weak children. For unknown reasons, the children receive magical powers in the fairy kingdom, and after a while they turn into fairies.
    • Fairies can also have common children with humans. If this child grows up among humans, it differs only slightly from other humans, but still has some fairy features, such as pointed ears, or can detect magical illusions.
      • Unlike full faeries, half-faeries can lie.
      • As the half-fairy grows among fairies, she develops the same powers as other fairies. At the same time, she is much less affected by the weaknesses. Half-fairies, unlike pure fairies, can also lie.
      • The child of a shadowhunter and a fairy is also a shadowhunter, albeit with fairy traits.
    • Officially, most fairies are bisexual.
    • For creatures with keen senses, such as vampires and werewolves, fairies smell like dead flowers.
  • My Vampire Older Sister and Zombie Little Sister has various kinds of fairies, both humanoid and non-humanoid, though the only one to make an appearance so far is the Leanan Sidhe. Leanan Sidhe can designate a human (or multiple humans) as their lover, giving them inspiration but draining their life force in exchange. They are also invisible and intangible to everyone and everything that isn't their lover.
  • James Herbert's Once depicts folkloric conception of the faerefolkis to have been inspired by race memory. Elemental beings who live on a dimension usually beyond human senses, their nurture of nature enables the planet to support life. While widely varied in form, they come in three ranges of size: tiny; dwarfish, or tall enough to be mistaken for short humans.
  • Peter Pan: Fairies — especially the complicated character of Tinker Bell, a friend of Peter and a great enemy of Wendy at the same time — are very important. It is said that since they are so small, they can only hold one emotion inside themselves at a time, and hence are totally consumed by it. Like insects, they also don't live long; Tinker Bell is dead within a year of the Darlings leaving Neverland.
    • Peter Pan In Kensington Garden, which was basically Baum's rough draft of the above, has a whole host of fairies living in the titular locale. They're more benevolent, lacking Tinker Bell's emotional issues, and return Peter's flying power when he loses it. They also have a custom of marrying with the bride jumping into the groom's arm.
  • Princesses of the Pizza Parlor: Fairies are at least referable in the imagination of the game's world:
    • In Episode 2:
      • Flora, on becoming a level four Druid princess, gets "magical resistance to evil fairy-type magic".
      • Dryads are described as "fey tree-women", and woods with a Year Inside, Hour Outside, are called a "fey-wood", and "fey" is shown to be another way of referring to elves, in Episode 8.
    • In Episode 4, Bianca's headache is described by involving fairies:
      Behind her forehead, a tiny little fairy with a whomping big hammer was ringing her skull like a bell.
  • Rainbow Magic: Fairies are depicted as the "tiny human with insect wings" variant; additionally, almost all of them appear as young females. They're led by King Oberon and Queen Titania, and they function as Odd Job Gods, with their magic commanding nearly everything imagineable — from colors to weather to parties to music to the days of the week.
  • River of Dancing Gods: The fair folk take the place of our world's natural processes. They live eternal, but sadly limited, lives.
  • Shadowmarch: The Rooftoppers, although they don't have wings. Rather they use birds, bats and rats as transport.
  • The Sookie Stackhouse Mysteries: = Fairies look like beautiful humans except for their pointed ears. Claudine chooses to cover hers with her hair, while her brother Claude had them surgically altered. They are allergic to lemons and iron and Vampires are very attracted to their blood.
  • Soon I Will Be Invincible: Elphin is a thousand-year-old fairy who looks like a teenage girl with wings, is abnormally strong for her size, skewers people with her magic spear and is vulnerable to cold iron. She can also summon lightning, much to Fatalle's dismay.
  • A society of fairies appear in the Spellsinger novel The Day of the Dissonance. They look like classic tiny winged humanoids, but they're too heavy to fly, and they occasionally have a craving to eat passing travellers. Tom-Jon quickly realises that the issue is their typical diet (nectar and ambrosia are pure sugar), but since they refuse to change it, he instead teaches them the strange magic of "aerobics".
  • The Stolen Child: The fairies/hobgoblins are largely in the Fair Folk mold, with the twist being that they were all human originally. They kidnap a human child and, though some mystical process not fully explained, turn him or her into a fairy, while one of their own makes himself into the child's double and replaces him or her. They're functionally immortal until they turn themselves back into humans, and don't age in any normal way (although they're implied to be odd-looking), and are just generally uncivilized and self-interested.
  • The Stormlight Archive: One of the main characters has a companion windspren named Syl that takes the traditional fairy form and she really is different even from other windspren who mostly just look like streaks of mist and lack self awareness. This is because she's actually an honorspren.
  • Stranger And Stranger: The fae are taller than humans, gifted with a powerful type of magic called a Blessing,rarely have wings, and tend to isolate themselves from humans. For example, the fae of Duircean, where the book is set, live in a forest. The fae also practice something called "snatching", where they cast a spell over a human child to turn them into a changeling faerie (which they actually have legal right to do).
  • Tough Magic: The races on Emis are fairies, leprechauns, pixies and sprites. However, as they are about human size and without wings, the only distinction between them and regular humans is the unusual colors of their skin, hair and eyes.
  • The Treachery of Beautiful Things: Even the little, winged Foletti, like Pretty Butterflies, are still nasty.
  • The Twelfth Enchantment: Fairies actually are the undead.
  • Les Voyageurs Sans Souci: Ted's idea of fairies is influenced by the tales of his Irish grandmother, who grew up in the Victorian Era. So, when a young girl wearing a strange winged costume flies into his room, Ted believes her to be a fairy, and he assumes she is friendly, well-meaning and English-speaking (since he believes fairies must come from Ireland).
  • The Wandering Inn: Faeries only are seen in the world, when winter comes, as it is their duty to bring it to the world. Citizen of the world can't actually see their real appearances, instead of they only perceive a blue blur, thus don't think of them as actual people, but as a natural phenomenon.
  • The War of the Flowers, also by Tad Williams, is set in Another Dimension populated by all kinds of fairies. The ruling class, however, seems to resemble standard elves more, including the attitude.
  • Well World: The Faerie are a species of glowing insect-like beings with humanoid faces, living in colonies consisting of many tiny lesser specimens and a single large queen. They are native to the hex of Ivrom, where the local rules of physics give them abilities that are, for all intents and purposes, powerful magic. They are cruel and manipulative beings, delighting in tormenting and transforming unfortunates who stumble into their clutches, and once threatened to overrun a great deal of the Well World before the Markovians acted to limit them to their hex. Faeries who made their way to Old Earth were responsible for myths of fairies, witches and evil spirits.
  • Wings Quartet: Fairies are actually highly evolved plants who resemble humans. They don't have wings, though, but they do "blossom".
  • The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: L. Frank Baum wanted to distance his "American fairy tale" from the old fairy tales of Europe, so he went out of his way to make his fairies very different. For instance, none of Baum's fairies fly, with only a couple possible exceptions. Fairies in Baum's universe are on a god-like level, immortals ruling over various aspects of nature (an entire pantheon is given in Tik-Tok of Oz).
  • The Fey and the Fallen: Most of the fairies we see are the Irish Tuatha Dé Danann, and they are in a war with Fallen Angels. Irish fey are vulnerable to iron, have clans and political infighting among themselves, and are capable of making Half-Human Hybrids. While other kinds of fey exist, they are from countries outside of Ireland and seldom seen in-story.
  • Moonflowers is a Fantasy Kitchen Sink set in Ireland, where the traditional version of The Fair Folk are Nature Spirits... and The Wild Hunt is a hundred-strong group of warriors terrorizing the rural areas, whose leader the Horned Hunter is the Anthropomorphic Personification of predators. They cursed the Asian-American protagonist and her family to impending death in a ritual hunt called the Fairy Raid, which has pissed off a growing number of deities.
  • In Arcana Magi, some fairies, so far, work for Avalon Tech Enterprises. One fairy is on the Board of Directors and another fairy is a scientist dealing with chemicals and diseases
  • Defection: Fairies are any sentient being not currently residing in their dimension of origin, I.E. A dimensional traveler. Strange things happen when you aren't where you are supposed to be.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In Charmed (1998) fairies can only be seen by children, though adults can see them if they believe and a spell can be cast to make them innocent again. Along with trolls, fairies live in "in-betweens" — windows, doorways, shadows — and thus are able to cross over into our world. They are able to do so freely during midnight when the world itself becomes an in-between. After the fairies' debut episode, the sisters apparently created a spell that allows them to see fairies from then on as they appear frequently in the series. They are also notorious for stealing things — which results in a funny moment when (taking Paige's advice too literally) the fairies return everything they ever stole from Henry, including things he lost in high school.
  • The Magicians (2016): Fairies are all pale and wear light-colored clothing. Aside from that, they look basically like humans, though also grow from mushrooms. They fit many of the folktale cliches, such as making exploitative deals with the humans, or switching others for their children.
  • Merlin (2008):
    • There are several episodes with the Sidhe, a fairy race associated with the legends of England and Ireland. They're blue-faced and many carry magic staffs. A Sidhe can entrance a human and can be placed inside a human child to take full control later in life. The two in "The Gates of Avalon" had been banished and were seeking a human prince to sacrifice so the daughter could return to Avalon. Pixies, another race, sometimes work with them.
    • Queen Mab makes an appearance in the Dark Tower episode. She is a mischievous trickster.
  • Monty Python's Flying Circus: Episode 13 has a sketch about fairies on the police force. For once in the series, "fairy" is not synonymous with "poofter."
  • The Other Kingdom: In this universe, fairies tend to resemble humans in terms of height, coloring, and body structure but they have characteristics that reveal their otherworldly and magical nature. A fairy's glowing wings distinguish them from other mystical creatures. They aren't born with their wings but grow their wings at a certain age but the exact age differs from fairy to fairy. Wings may be a sign that a fairy has received her full powers as Peaseblossom seemed to lack any form of fairy magic when she lacked wings. They can change into a tiny orb of light the same hue as their wings. Fairies revert to this form instantly and without consent when they enter the Other Kingdom but a few can maintain their human-sized shape such as the Athenian monarchs.
  • Once Upon a Time has the tiny, winged vareity who grant wishes, though they are able to assume human size. According to seasons 3 and 4, fairies are not all good wish granters and not always humanoid. The "Black Fairy" is said to be the most evil and most powerful dark fairy, and the giant demon Chernabog (yes, THAT Chernabog) is also heavily implied to also be a fairy.
  • In Power Rangers Mystic Force a fairy is actually a zord. The Mystic Sprite belongs to the (what else) Pink Ranger.
  • Shadowhunters: Fairies are known as Seelies. They are among the Downworlder species (species that are part demon) and have the distinction of also being part angel. They cannot tell lies, but are still considered untrustworthy. Meliorn is a Seelie that has an affair with Isabelle and helps Clary and Jace open a portal to another dimension in "The World Inverted."
  • In the Torchwood episode "Small Worlds", fairies are actually children snatched out of time and turned into creatures humans initially see as light, but who have a true form of a gremlin-like monster. They choke people with rose petals that wrong the children they'd chosen to join them and spontaneously cause severe weather. Side note: their scientific name is "Homo fata vulgaris".
  • Zapped: An office worker is accidentally zapped into a fantasy universe where the laws of fantasy are enforced by big burly thuggish brutes called fairies who can shapeshift into a more traditionally fairy-like, small and agile form for traveling.
  • There was a horror-themed show on CITV (name forgotten) that had a segment on a girl wishing she could see a fairy one day and finding some at the bottom of her garden. Unfortunately, instead of being happy, wish-granting creatures they were these horrible little creatures with large teeth that bit her... and after she found them, they started turning up everywhere, causing her to cage them to stop from being attacked, but they just kept on coming...

  • Clamavi de Profundis: Fairies are present in the world of Hammerdeep, where they're short, insect-winged women who inhabit wild forests.

    Myths & Religion 
  • Many cultures, countries and localities have their own local variation of fairy-like creatures. For example, Greek Mythology has Nymphs, Naiads and Dryads (water and tree spirits respectively), fawns, satyrs, centaurs and other semi-divine races of creatures, usually a One-Gender Race.
  • German legends have wood or forest sprites. Franz Xaver von Schönwerth's books on Bavarian folklore describe them in this way: "Wood sprites, or forest sprites, are tiny creatures that make their homes near hearths. Their clothing is made of spun moss that hangs in ropelike strands from trees. We think of them as enchanted beings hounded by phantom hunters. They live together as married couples and bear children. Their enemies are the phantom hunters, who rage through the lands like wild beasts during autumnal storms. The wood sprites' only protection against them is to take refuge on a tree stump that has three crosses carved into it."
  • Slavic Mythology:
    • In the Slavic-speaking world, there are the vilas, beautiful maidens with supernatural powers that get caught in the affairs of mortals in some way or another. They usually are present in South Slavic tradition, and are often translated as "fairies" in Anglophone works.
    • A related personage is the samodiva or samovila of Bulgarian folklore, who plays a somewhat similar role to the Slavic vilas.
  • In modern Greek folklore, the Neraidas (not to be confused with the Ancient Greek "Neraidas", who are water-based nymphs) are said to be beautiul maidens that live in wild nature (mountains, rivers, streams) who, in folktales, get married to hunters and shepherds when mortal men steal their garments.

  • Farfalla: The butterfly fairy hangs out in flower gardens and entices players with her attractive looks.

  • Cool Kids Table: In Hogwarts: The New Class, Shannon befriends a dust nymph (also referred to as a dust bunny) and names it Usagi.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Ars Magica: Fairies subconsciously take on roles from human stories and reenact them with (usually) unwitting humans to obtain the vitality they crave. This trait makes faeries difficult to combat (except by apotropaic magics) since in many cases their "death" is part of the story and only provides additional vitality.
  • The Dark Eye: Fairies are a varied group of creatures that originate from the fairy realm and can cross into Dere when holes open between the two worlds. They sicken and die if they spend too much time away from their home, however, requiring them to periodically return to the fairy lands to rest and recover.
    • Blossom fairies are the classic tiny, butterfly-winged, forest-dwelling humanoid kind. They're the most common type and the ones most people think of when they think of fairies. They are all female, and wear clothing shaped like flower blossoms.
    • Nymphs and dryads are larger and resemble beautiful humanoid women, and appoint themselves as protectors of ancient trees and of bodies of water, respectively.
  • Dungeons & Dragons.
    • This list contains just some of the canon and fan-made species.
    • Pixies are noted for being one of the few truly playable high ECL (basically you get racial abilities instead of a higher character level) races, thanks to their strong racial ability scores, invisibility, spell-like abilities and flight.
    • As of Heroes of the Feywild, Pixies have become an official PC race for 4th Edition. Along with Satyrs and Hamadryad.
    • In Arcana Evolved, the fairies are made when either "Loresong" or "Quickling" Faen, essentially Elves and Halflings, secrete a sticky substance that becomes a chrysalis, and within 7 days time, the faen permanently metamorphs into a Spryte.
    • Mystara: In the supplement Tall Tales of the Wee Folk, a centaur scholar claims that fairies are, in fact, the Immortals (gods) of a previous iteration of the multiverse. They helped nurture and preserve the Sphere of Life when opposing forces dominated the cosmos, and will do so again when the present Life-dominated reality yields to the Sphere of Death in an ever-repeating cycle. Until then, the fairy folk — pixies, sprites, leprechauns, sidhe, wood imps, drakes, brownies, pookas — retain their immortality but their power is diminished.
    • Eberron finally nails down what the fey actually are. They have a lot of elemental traits (but that's covered by elementals), they have a lot of nature traits (but that's covered by plants or magical beasts), and even some malific or benevolent traits (covered by fiends or angels). This is because fey are living stories. A treant is a living tree, but a dryad is the idea of a living tree—which is why they are far more humanoid. Many parts of Thelanis (the fey plane) are absurd or completely illogical because they don't actually have to make sense; they are a story, and have no need to exist outside of that specific plot or idea they embody. Of course, problems arise when the fey end up in the mortal realm, where logic and physics are more important than theme and dramatic tension.
  • Exalted: The Fair Folk are natives of the Wyld, the unshaped ocean of potentiality outside of Creation where things like "physics" and "causality" are foreign concepts. Unlike most other beings, the Fair Folk don't have a Motivation. Rather, they have something they adopt as a passing fancy, a role they enter into because it seems dramatically appropriate at the time. Oh, and they eat souls. Basically, they're role-playing gamers, Creation is their gameworld, and your PCs are just NPCs to them. Unsurprisingly, they have a hard time with concepts like empathy and consequences.
  • Godforsaken: Faeries are puckish and whimsical magic creatures resembling tiny winged humanoids. Some might only perform a silly song or follow people for a while, flitting around and asking questions like an annoying young child. Some are crueller and delight in stealing clothing, equipment or prized objects. A few are downright malicious and, under the guise of a helpful guide or a pretty light in the distance, lure lost travellers to their dooms. The less malicious ones can be bargained with using offerings of sweet foods or wine, but still tend to have short attention spans.
  • GURPS, being designed as a Universal System, supports all sorts of concepts of fairies, as appropriate to the setting. For example:
    • Fairies in GURPS Fantasy are living illusions. Their magic can be as easily destroyed by iron as they are.
    • Fairies in GURPS Thaumatology: Alchemical Baroque are a category of supernatural being who can take a whole range of weird and wonderful shapes — though manifesting as gigantic monsters tends to burn out their shapechanging powers, leaving them stuck as ogres, dragons, or whatever.
  • Middle-Earth Role Playing: "Fairy" is a general term used to refer to the lesser Maiar, mostly ones who are tied to nature in some way. Many played some role in shaping the world during the Elder Days, although a few are comparatively more recent spirits. Almost all the ones remaining in the world are tied to guardianship of something, usually a specific place or landform.
  • Pathfinder: Fey are the natives of the First World, the collected amalgam of the gods' rough drafts and experiments left behind when they created the material world. The fey themselves descend from those experimental beings, including both variant versions of creatures included into finished creation and beings that never left the metaphorical sketch pad, or otherwise embody aspects of the natural world — dryads are embodiments of arboreal plant life, for instance, while gremlins embody entropy and the tendency for complex systems to break down. The First World's status as something the gods left behind also places fey apart from the cycle of life, death and afterlife — fey don't have souls and are usually reincarnated in the First World after death, although ones that perish in the material world risk permanent death. They're consequently unused to thinking in terms of mortality or permanent consequences, giving them a rather alien mindset from the point of view of mortals.
  • Rifts: Faerie Folk come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors. They can be less than six inches or up to three feet tall, cute or horrendous, friendly (for a given value of such) or mean, and have varying powers. And of course, this being Rifts and all, can take almost as much damage as a modern Armored Personnel Carrier. Also, don't eat their food. They seem to have a penchant for Visual Puns involving the name of their food and what Transformations or charm effects it causes. For example, Tarts tend to make women extremely amorous, Burgundy wine turns you that color, and you should stay the hell away from the Frog's Legs, unless that's what you want.
  • The Small Folk has fairy folk whose ancestors were very traditional, but who've moved with the times to survive in the modern world.
  • Warhammer: Spites (often corrupted into "Sprites" in peasant folklore) are a kind of diminutive forest spirit found in woodlands throughout the Old World, and especially in the vast enchanted forest of Athel Loren. They're cruel tricksters with extremely nasty tempers, and not to be trifled with lightly. They're adept shapeshifters, and can appear as glowing orbs of light, tiny elves riding beetles or black birds or skeletal horses, diminutive winged humanoids, odd-looking forest animals or anything else they've a mind to. They also tend to gather around the mightier denizens of the forest, and can often be seen nesting among the branches of treemen or clinging to the bodies of forest dragons.
  • The World of Darkness: Both Changeling gamelines make heavy use of the Fae:
    • Changeling: The Dreaming splits its changelings up into Kiths; the Kithain, European-style fairies, range from Boggans to Nockers to Pooka to Redcaps to Sidhe to Trolls. And that's just the Kithain — you've got the Nunnehi (Native American fae), the Inanimae (elemental embodiments), the Hsien (Asian "small gods")...
    • Changeling: The Lost has the True Fae, which are so different from one another as to give you whiplash. Not only that, but every single of them ends up different over the years; what may have been a man-eating giant a century ago could turn into La Belle Dame Sans Merci (or Baba Yaga). There's even a True Fae transforming robot (his alt is a motorcycle). Then you have the changelings, their escaped servants, who are split up into Seemings (general patterns of their durances in Arcadia) and Kiths (specified durances). A Ogre kept in a charnel pit may turn into a Gristlegrinder or an Oni, a Beast kept as a falcon may be a Windwing or a Cleareyes, or a Wizened forced to maintain his Keeper's estate may turn into a Chatelaine or a Drudge, or some combination if you use optional rules. And then you have the hobgoblins...

  • A Midsummer Night's Dream: Most fairies are of The Fair Folk mold, but Titania's attendants are generally more common portrayed as child-sized winged creatures.
  • Iolanthe:
    Phyllis: Whenever I see you kissing a very young lady, I shall know it's an elderly relative.
    Strephon: You will? Then, Phyllis, I think we shall be very happy!
  • Peter Pan (1904): Tinker Bell isn't a humanoid figure but just a floating point of light, and her voice is represented by the tinkling of bells.
  • La Sylphide (or The Sylph): The protagonist falls in love with a beautiful fairy with rainbow wings. He abandons his mortal fiancee to chase after her. Wicked Witch Old Madge tells him she is unable to be with him as she will always fly away. She then presents him with a magic scarf that will prevent her from flying away. It makes her wings fall off and she dies.
  • She Kills Monsters: Farrah is an evil fairy who serves as one of the bosses in the Dungeons & Dragons campaign Tilly Evans created for her sister, Agnes. The character description is as follows: "A little forest faerie. Appears very young. She’s adorable, but she’s actually an angry savage in a small package."

    Video Games 
  • Atelier Series: Fairies are males the size of little boys and dressed in green. The only exceptions are their old village leader, and the hideous muscle-bound "fairy" from Mana Khemia 2: Fall of Alchemy. Also, despite the fact that they don't age physically, faeries can age in personality. This becomes a minor plot point in the third Atelier Iris game, in which an npc gets majorly weirded out by a fairy talking like an old man.
  • Bravely Default has Airy, a crystal fairy who turns out to be the Big Bad and a despicable liar who serves an Eldritch Abomination.
  • Cassette Beasts: Glaistain is loosely based on the glaistig, a kind of elusive fairy from the Scottish highlands. Glaistain's title is "stained glass fairy", and it vaguely resembles a Winged Humainoid with the planes of glass that float behind its back.
  • Chantelise: They are small Winged Humanoids that emit fairy dust. They are former humans turned into fae by being imbued with magic stones by a castle in order to seal away an Archdevil, enabling their partner to slay monsters with ease, but they die if they use up all their fairy dust.
  • Digimon: Fairy-Type is one of the many types in Digimon. Most of them are humanoid, like Lilimon and Fairimon/Kazemon, while others resemble small animals, like Cutemon and Luminamon.
  • Donkey Kong Jungle Beat: The combo fairies resemble flying balls of light that circle around Donkey Kong in larger numbers the longer his combos get.
  • The Dungeon Keeper series: Fairies appear as heroes (and therefore, usually antagonists to the player) in both games. In both games they are humanoid with dragonfly-type wings and fly, but are of a similar size to human heroes. They are potent spellcasters and fast-moving but rather weak in combat and have few hit points, making them both Glass Cannons and Fragile Speedsters. In both games, they can be converted to the player's side.
  • Eternal Senia: Little Fairy, about hands-sized and her Queen, human-sized appear in multiple games:
  • In Faery: Legends of Avalon, the titular faeries come in various shapes and sizes. The player character is small by human standards, but there are faeries who are even smaller. Their wings and other attributes vary, but are generally insect-derived (dragonflies, butterflies, etc). They can also be a variety of colours — your own character can be particularly striking, if you use the character creator. They range in attractiveness from Fairy Sexy to Gonk.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Final Fantasy: A fairy gives the player an item that enables them to breathe underwater.
    • Final Fantasy III: They inhabit the Living Wood and will give the player a gift if they save their home.
    • They appear as enemies in Final Fantasy Legend II and III'.
    • Final Fantasy Tactics: Faerie is a summon and heals the party. She has wings of a bird rather than the traditional dragonfly or butterfly wings.
    • There's the recurring summon Sylph that appears either as one or a group of fairies. The traditional attack "Whispering Wind" drains HP from the enemy and gives it to the party. In Revenant Wings Sylph instead deals non-elemental damage with "Aero".
    • Final Fantasy XIV reintroduces Sylphs as a beast tribe that reside in the Black Shroud who tend to shun human contact outside of one village. The expansion Shadowbringers also introduces fae folk in the region of Il Mheg, including the Pixies, mischievous sprites that like to play games and pranks with any mortals that cross their path.
  • Folklore: Fairies are wingless creatures who are roughly three feet tall, and only appear in The Lost Woods-like "Faery Realm". Some are helpful to you, while others (later in the game) are not.
  • Helen's Mysterious Castle: The Fairy Companion of Zack, who has No Name Given. She's a small Winged Humanoid can fly and carry Zack with her.
  • HuniePop: Kyu is a love fairy, which means basically she goes out to hopeless young men and helps them find romance. She can also produce a device for tracking women, and turn invisible and change colour at will. She's also The Lad-ette.
    Kyu: [after eating pizza] "Mmmmmm, fuck, that's good! Yo, I'm about to bust a nut over here!"
  • In La-Mulana, once you get the Diviner Sensation ROM (or Isis's Pendant in the remake), you can summon fairies to restore your health and, by equipping it with another ROM at specific spots, key fairies which unlock many things necessary for 100% Completion.
  • La Tale, sylphs show up in this form on the icons for all of the Wizard's Wind skills, as well as generic fire faeries in the Lair of the Evil Dragon instance, and eventually the Xenadia area.
  • The Legend of Zelda: In the original games, fairies simply restored hearts. Starting with the The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, the Great Fairies can also grant gifts, like extra powers and more item carrying capacity. In Majora's Mask we meet fairies who have been broken apart into dozens of littler fairies, and you had to restore them. Wind Waker introduces the Queen of the Fairies, who looks like a little girl. Also, they constantly switch from being winged to wingless and having insect-like antennae or not.
  • Märchen Forest: Mylne and the Forest Gift: The mushroom creature is called a fairy in the original and a sprite in the remaster.
  • Mega Man Zero: Sol Titanion is a fire-specialized robot who is inspired by the fairy queen Titania.
  • Meteos: The planet Vubble is home to a species of bubble-like Starfish Aliens that resemble fairies. They are 10 cm in height, breathe out bubbles, sport butterfly wings, loathe all sharp objects, and spend their free time skating on the surface of Vubble's foamy oceans.
  • In Mother 3, the "fairies", called Magypsies, look like men in heavy makeup and dresses. Apparently, they transcend mortal genders as well as mortal lifespans.
  • In Ni no Kuni, fairies are odd lumps with varying shapes and sizes (though even the tallest ones are shorter than human children), have a love for comedy, speak in welsh accents, frequently use the word "tidy!" and are a all male with the exception of the Fairy Godmother, who is a mountain-sized face that holds what looks like a kindergarten inside it, where she keeps the egg-shaped baby fairies until they are old enough to fend for themselves, after which she proceeds to fire them from the chimney on her top so they can land on a nearby river.
  • Nobody Saves the World: On the map, fairies look like balls of pale blue light with butterfly wings. Talking to them shows that they look more like shady drug dealers (also with butterfly wings). Each fairy increases your maximum mana and finding them all is one of the sidequests.
  • Willo from Paladins is a fairy who looks like a plant-based organism, with her clothes and body appearing to be merged to a certain degree. She may be the size of a small child, but with her wand and seedlings, she's a powerful damage champion that specializes in explosive area damage.
  • Panel de Pon: Ruby is the stereotypical winged fairy. The other non-villanous playable characters, and the final boss, are fairies as well, but they look more like long-eared humans.
  • Plantasia: Holly, the player character, looks almost exactly like a normal human, albeit with pointed ears and pink hair. She can apparently pull clothes out of nowhere to disguise herself as a human, as seen in the intro of the game, and can make multiple shovels, watering cans, weeding tools, and extermination tools work simultaneously on the field, depending on how many of the tool she has and how many are available for her to use at the time. She can also fly or at least hover, despite having no visible wings.
  • Pokémon have always had a few creatures that are based on fairies and fairy-like creatures. Many of them are small adorable creatures like the Clefairy, Roselia, and Snorunt lines. All of them belong to an egg group (a classification of Pokemon that can breed with each other) called the Fairy egg group (including Series Mascot Pikachu). It wasn't until Pokémon X and Y that Fairy was introduced as an actual type in order to combat the overpowered Dragon-types, and many older Pokemon were given the new type. These range from the previously mentioned Clefairy line to more mystic ones like the Ralts line and devious ones like Mawile. The Fairy-types introduced in later generations include the elegant and stately Flabébé line, the mischievous key-stealing Klefki, the Cutiefly line, which approaches the traditional Winged Humanoid image by way of being a humanoid bee, and the Legendary Pokémon Xerneas, a massive deer and effectively a god of rebirth. Outwardly malevolent ones were also introduced, namely the soul-eating Morelull line, the silent, territorial, witch-styled Hatenna line, and the violent, aggressive, and mischievous Impidimp line. Fairy-types are vulnerable to Steel-type attacks, as a nod to fairies' weakness to Cold Iron, and to Poison-type ones, representing nature's weakness to pollution. And then there's Galarian Weezing. A pair of floating sea mines stuck together (as with normal Weezing), now sporting top hat shaped chimmneys and moustaches of pea souper smog. And it's a Poison/Fairy type.
  • The Princess Maker series: They have Pointy Ears and are Winged Humanoids:
    • Princess Maker: In Refine, there's Martial Arts Tournament contestant, Tiny Fairy Spring Wind.
    • Princess Maker 3: Ruled by a queen, as seen in the opening, and can have unnatural hair colors.
  • Rayman: Big fairies, small fairies, fairies with wings, fairies with tails, fairies that glow, fairies that don't, fairies with or without silly hats. You name it.
  • RuneScape: Fairies are tiny, flying, mostly-female humanoids, who live in a blue-tinted magical kingdom where sheep and cows can talk. The fairies are responsible for things like the weather changing, crops growing and teeth being collected. There is also a Faerie Mafia.
  • In Shining the Holy Ark you can capture various types of "pixies". The Pixie a blond that looks like she's wearing a swimsuit; the Fairy a "traditional" looking fairy; the Succubus a green haired woman that shows a lot of ass; the Incubus a male fairy and the Leprechaun who looks as you would expect. You would collect each type and unleash them just before a battle to cause quick damage. The direction the enemy would enter the screen would indicate which type of fairy to use. Once you had all 50 pixies you could visit the queen of the pixies to get a magic wand that would allow you to attack with all 50 pixies at once, no matter the direction the enemy entered the battle.
  • Shin Megami Tensei offers a wide selection of The Fair Folk to serve as the Fairy race, from the standard Pixie, to Oberon and Titania themselves, to Trolls and Jack Frost. Other entities commonly associated with the race such as Setanta and Tam Lin sometimes join them.
  • The Sims 3: Fairies are introduced in the Supernatural expansion pack. They look like normal sims, except with wings of different colors and shapes. They have various nature-related abilities and live 5 times as long as normal Sims.
  • Solomon's Key: Fairies are summoned by obtaining the Bell of Lyrac, and collecting ten fairies gives Dana an extra life.
  • Tactics Ogre: The Gameboy Advance installment gives you fairy units, and they are typical foot-tall-winged-girl Squishy Wizards. One hit splatters them but they make for good healers.
  • Touhou Project: Fairies are depicted as being childlike in both appearance and personality. However, they possess Resurrective Immortality, as when they die they will just respawn elsewhere. Gameplay-wise, this makes them the perfect Mooks for the heroines to mow through. In general, fairies are pranksters, childish, and have limited capabilities to learn from experience. They're also at the bottom of the ladder when it comes to power (with some exceptions, like Clownpiece). Setting-wise, fairies are actually the embodiment of life and nature, and thus have the power to control lifeforce (they're just too stupid to realize that). A lifeless land will become a lush, fertile land when fairies inhabit it. Special mention deserves to go to Cirno, one of the franchise's more popular characters. She calls herself the strongest being in Gensokyo, but is only a Stage 2 boss at best; on the other hand, it has been noted by other characters that she's abnormally strong for a fairy. She also calls herself a genius, which is only true when compared to other fairies, since she's literate and her attention span is slightly longer than average. Since she's immortal like all fairies, her Gaiden Game Fairy Wars doesn't use a Life Meter, but rather a "Motivation Meter", and if it empties she forgets what she was doing and wanders off to do something else.
  • Trials of Mana, faeries (spelled as such in-game) protect the Mana Tree and require Mana to live. They can harmlessly inhabit the head of a human, allowing them to live away from the Sanctuary of Mana for extended periods of time, but can't inhabit a new human until the chosen human dies. And the one faerie who follows around the heroes eventually becomes the new Mana Goddess.
  • Valley of Unicorns: The spring fairies are horses with fairy wings. They're the second least common species on the site in terms of color variations, and the majority have been released only during events or for real-money purchases.
  • A Very Long Rope to the Top of the Sky: Emil's information on the various types of Mana that can be used for crafting, discusses a lot about fairies, such as:
    Raw Mana: Fairies are known to carry mana. The weaker the fairy, the less concentrated the mana.
    So you might want to look for the weakest fairies, like the forest pixies in the Green Vein.
  • Wizardry: Faeries are a playable race in later games. Their small size restricts them from most weapons and armor, but they make excellent mages, priests, and (funnily enough) ninjas.
  • ZanZarah: The Hidden Portal: Fairies are small beings with magic powers that can move between astral plane where the duel battles take place and Zanzarah. There are 77 types of fairies that belong to 12 diferent elements. Some look like stereotypical Winged Humanoid with butterfly or bird wings, but others look like polar bears, mushrooms, fish, dragons, demons, undead, and other bizarre creatures.

  • Addictive Science: Fairies, at least in Geenie's universe, are mothlike insects with immense magical power.
  • Arthur, King of Time and Space: In the fairy-tale and space arcs, fairies look like this. (In the contemporary arc the same beings are fictional aliens from Merlin's [and now Arthur's] webcomic.)
  • At Arm's Length:
    • Greg is a college-frat type transformed into the winged human-sized variety, and he's none to pleased about it.
    • Plus Britt and 2Q, who are of the cute winged pixie variety.
  • Charby the Vampirate: The faeries of Kellwood are split into the Seelie and Unseelie courts and are size shifting humanoids with butterfly like wings and an attraction to power.
  • City of Trees uses the term "fae" to describe beautiful, humanoid being with pointed ears and strange defining features. In this story, fae stand out as industry titans, having replaced iron in this world with a faerie-friendly material from their wold called "titanium."
  • Daily Grind: Since all characters are talking animals, the Fae are big glowing spiders. They also claim to have no free will but say that they're animated by the spirit of Lord Cyrios in everything they do.
  • Drowtales: Any humanoid or animal with an aura is counted as a fae. The drowalath (black drow), drowussu (grey drow) and vanir (light elves) are the dominant kinds. There are also tiny fairies, also known as Locust Queens, who are small humanoid/insect hybrids and are considered vermin by the drow.
  • El Goonish Shive:
    • Nanase's Fairy Doll Spell causes her mind to temporarily leaves her body to inhabit a tiny version of herself with wings. Great for communication/scouting, not so great for fighting.
    • The introvert Dex gains summoning magic through mysterious means. His main summon is a fairy companion, since he's lonely. He acknowledges that she's not a real fairy, and is guided by his own desire for friendship.
    • Susan has an item-summoning spell that, when she tries to summon one of Nanase's Fairy Dolls, winds up creating a fairy not unlike Dex's, which independently acts on the emotions and desires Susan herself doesn't want to express.
    • Eventually, it's revealed that there are, in fact, real fairies. They're the "immortals" that have been part of the storyline all along. Why they stopped using that name is unclear, but Heka insists on continuing to use it, on the grounds that there's more than one type of creature with immortality and they need to have distinct names.
  • Footloose: The Fey are fairly badass swords-and-sorcery fairies. Smart people don't mess with them.
  • Gunnerkrigg Court has "Regional Fairies". They have spots on their shoulders showing which "region" they live in. They learn magic and make their own wings, and they don't gain names until they've come of age. City Face shows the regional fairies offering important advice to pigeons and magpies. Their dialogue hints that they don't distinguish between lengths of space and lengths of time — and the twin sisters Ogee and Torus can never be seen at the same time by humans, because they occupy the same space and time, but at different periods along a non-linear time scale.
  • Homestuck:
    • Tavros is mildly obsessed with insect-winged, Peter Pan-esque fairies. The narration usually goes out of its way, on occasions when these come up, to point out the fairies' dual attributes of being a) lovely, and b) fake and imaginary.
    • Trolls who reach the god tiers develop transparent butterfly-like wings tinted with their blood colors; some, such as Tavros' ancestor the Summoner, seemingly grow them naturally. Trolls with such wings are often described as or referred to as fairies.
  • My Roommate Is an Elf features a pixie named Flint. He's very small and from a distance resembles a glowing shape with wings. Griswold, the elf, rescued him some time before the comic began and is very protective of him, threatening Dearg after Dearg tried to eat him.
  • No Rest for the Wicked: The innkeeper expects a disguised fairy who reward the kind and generous after testing them in disguise.
  • Nothing Special: They're split into four classes of Elemental Powers: Earth, Water, Fire and Air. Though Hybrids are rare. One of the main character, Declan, turns out to be one of such. Able to wield Earth and Fire. He's also much taller then most, being a Half-Human Hybrid as well.
  • The Order of the Stick has Celia, an air elemental sylph (originally one of matched set of four). She sometimes forgets the differences between herself and mortal creatures.
  • Roommates (and it's spin offs like Girls Next Door) has The Fair Folk type and most are human sized and wingless (pointy ears are common but not required) except to date the Green Fairy who is small winged and Fairy Sexy.
  • Seekers: Giselda is a Wingling, not a Fairy. And she'll be sure to correct you.
  • So Damn Bright: Flikker and others seem to be basically humans with some unspecified difference and butterfly wings growing from their backs. No magic powers or ability to fly has been shown, and they seem to have sexual relations with humans (a dating site asks if you are looking for "fae" or "anthro", and on another occasion Flikker mentions that one of the other human characters didn't strike her as the sort who might be "faesexual" ). Flikker sheds her lower wings at one stage, this apparently being a mark of ageing or growing up. Fairies seem to shed and regrow their wings from time to time.
  • The Strange Tales of Oscar Zahn: In the past, the Fey once walked alongside mankind when they were still aware of the existence of forces beyond mortal comprehension. At some point, such knowledge was lost to humanity, leaving the Fey to pick up on their work alone. In the present, Sebastian is the last one remaining to shepherd the dead as the rest left the world behind.
  • Virtual Pet Planet: The wold has a race of Pixies that basically run everything. Some of them even sell curious wares.
  • The Weave: Called fairies, though technically they are more of The Fair Folk: Human-sized, very beautiful, pointy-eared, don't have wings (in default mode at least), can have unusual eye or hair colors and some non-human features (at least one of them has been seen with antlers), and all of them are capable of doing magic in some way, i. e. transform themselves. They are definitely not the sunny, wish-fulfilling sort of fairies, but more likely the sort of people who'd abduct you and leave you lost in the deep dark woods.
  • The Wolf at Weston Court: Faeries are all-female human-sized creatures with pointed ears, retractable wings, and a penchant for gun powder. They have no apparent magical advantage over other races, but they pride themselves in their powerful military. At the time of the story, they wear World War I-esque uniforms (with open backs for the wings) and their canon accent is standard American.

    Web Original 
  • Dreamscape: Eleenin's fairies are summoned to help in combat, rather than being a Fairy Companion. Also, they're transparent.
  • Everything2 has detailed instructions of how to gather pixie dust.
  • Felarya has size-changing, man-eating fairies.
  • In The Midgaheim Bestiary, fairies, or The Fair Folk, are a loose and diverse group of beings native to Fairy Land. They are descended from natives of the physical world that remained stranded in Fairyland for whatever reason, eventually becoming mutated and spiritually altered by the omnipresent magic there. Some are still recognizable as members of a specific group of living things, while others have become mutated beyond recognition. Most fairies lose their powers if they spend too much time in the mundane world, and the more magical or mutated kinds aren't very well suited for surviving there at all in the long term. They cannot lie or go back on their word — a fairy that breaks an oath risks being destroyed by magical backlash. They're divided in several types, based off of their origins, role in Fairyland's ecosystems and societies, and general appearance.
    • Boogeymen are a family of fairies that includes goblins, bugbears, trolls and orcs, and specialize in forming connections between Fairyland and the mortal world or subsuming small portions of mundane reality into the fairy world to maintain some measure of internal stability there. They're generally looked down on in fairy society, despite the importance of their role, and are the type of fairy most attuned to life in the physical world.
    • Humanoid fairies are the classic tiny winged humanoids. They're descendants of mundane animals and plants that mutated to take on humanoid shapes, and generally form the middle class and lower aristocracy of fairy society.
    • High elves, or human fairies, descend from humans who became trapped in Fairyland. They're highly magical and often the rulers of Seelie fairy courts, and their difficulty in surviving outside of Fairyland means that they tend to rely on servants and minions to interact with the human world.
    • Bestial fairies resemble normal or monstrous animals with minimal or no anthropomorphic traits. They otherwise think and behave like normal fairies, and many can shapeshift into regular animals. Kelpies belong to this family.
    • Monstrous fairies, such as nuckelavees, are the oldest inhabitants of Fairyland, and are so highly mutated that it's effectively impossible to determine their mortal ancestors or their position in taxonomy. They are very powerful, and tend to rule Unseelie fairy courts.
    • Occult fairies, such as banshees, are closely tied with death and the afterlife and are halfway to being undead themselves. Their link to one of the cardinal truths of mortal life means that they also tend to be more mentally grounded than other fairies.
  • Mitten Squad: "Blueberries & Fairies", where the movie, The Tooth Fairy, is mentioned.

    Western Animation 
  • Avez-vous déjà vu... ? features two. One, "la fée fagot" (the faggotnote  fairy), is the "tiny flying humanoid" type and grants wishes, but only to wood (Pinocchio is a frequent recipient/victim). The other, human-sized, is a lazy bum who uses magic to do everything without ever getting up from her couch.
  • Barbie movies:
    • Barbie Fairytopia has Barbie and friends as fairies.
    • Barbie: A Fairy Secret has Barbie and friends as fairies.
    • Barbie Presents Thumbelina: Thumbelina and her friends are part of a species known as the Twillerbees. Twillerbees are no larger than a grown human's hand, have wings, and have a magical connection with nature. On one hand, they can make plants grow faster, on the other Twillerbabies are born from flowers.
  • The fairies on Butterbean's Cafe have Pointy Ears and cookie-like wings. However, Butterbean and her friends are the only fairies consistently shown flying.
  • The Fairly OddParents! is about fairies that have taken up the task of watching over a miserable human child in need. There is, however, a distinction between a fairy and a fairy godparent. Fairies are able to roam free in fairy world, living as they please. By going to the Fairy Academy, a fairy can become a fairy godparent and get assigned to a godchild. Fairy godparents have more power in reality warping than normal fairies, and are trained in happy wishmaking, as shown in "This Is Your Wish". The leader of the fairies is a muscular Arnold Schwarzenegger-inspired character named Jorgen Von Strangle. This is because creator Butch Hartman thought it would be funny to have the fairy leader be someone you'd least expect, and Arnold Schwarzenegger was the first thing that came to his mind.
  • In Filly Funtasia, Fairies are actually another race of Filly entirely. One of the main characters, Will, is one of them.
  • Gargoyles' "Third Race" aka "Oberon's Children" leans more towards The Fair Folk variety: All Myths Are True (though not necessarily "accurate"), and these "fairies" basically include all sorts of legendary creatures, from Norse and Egyptian gods to Shakespearean characters.
  • Gravity Falls: One episode briefly features an actual fairy, which is accidentally killed by Soos, to the horror of the twins. In another episode, one acts as a mosquito and tries to bite Stan, and it's later shown that fairy dust acts as as unicorn knock-out gas.
  • Hilda has an in-universe example. In Tofoten, fairies are depicted as tiny winged humanoids. In truth, most of them are former humans, abducted through the watchtowers, while the naturally born fairies have Pointy Ears and blue hair.
  • A Kind of Magic: Willow is a humanoid fairy.
  • My Little Pony:
  • The Owl House: Upon arriving in the Boiling Isles, Luz bumps into a seemingly innocent fairy, who then proceeds to bare a mouthful of giant teeth and screams to have her skin.
  • Sofia the First:
    • The Three Good Fairies and Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty appear alongside Miss Nettle; Tinker Bell (due to sharing continuity with Peter Pan), which may possibly also include the Pixie Hollow fairies; fliegels (such as Grotta), the small, obnoxious and pesty, prankster kind of fairies; fairies from the Mystic Isles (including the Sugar Plum Fairy), where fairies can age and have children, have to earn their wings by winning the Fairy Cup, and seem to have an attribute system similar to the Pixie Hollow fairies' talents, albeit much more broad (such as being Dream Fairies); fairy godmothers like Cinderella's or Ruby's (Tizzy); and Merryweather mentions having wanted to be a tooth fairy in one episode
    • Elena of Avalor: Orizaba is a moth fairy. She is resembles a deathly pale woman with giant moth wings, and due to being a nocturnal being who can only survive in the shade (especially during solar eclipses), she is Weakened by the Light. She's also a powerful magic user whose power would otherwise surpass that of the Big Bads and could only be defeated by the ancient Maruvians in the previous solar eclipse by stalling her out until the eclipse ended.
  • Winx Club fairies are human-sized Magical Girls from different planets all around the Magic Dimension. Though they're not always nice, they usually try to help people and protect the realms from evil. They also only have wings when they're transformed.

    Real Life 
  • The Cottingley Fairies were supposedly photos of actual fairies (small and winged, not the other kind) in 1917. A numbers of celebrities were caught up in the hype, including Arthur Conan Doyle, before the cousins who took the photos confessed they were fake. They still claimed to have seen actual fairies, and one cousin would later insist that one of the pictures (the lowest-quality one, incidentally) was real. Also served as the inspiration for two films in 1997: Photographing Fairies and Fairytale A True Story.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Fairy, Fairies


The Spring Sprite

The Spring Sprite from Fantasia 2000's Firebird Suite is a green, fairy-like spirit of nature that brings new life and vegetation to a forest covered by winter (and later ash).

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Example of:

Main / NatureSpirit

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