Tündér are charming, beautiful, and benevolent Fairies. Their name seems to be related to words meaning “appearing” and “disappearing.” Tündér are virtually exclusively female. They are fabulously wealthy, living on remote mountaintops in fabulous castles surrounded by beautiful gardens. Hungarian fairy tales describe Tündér protecting orphans and saving the destitute with gifts of the priceless pearls that they wear in their hair. They adore dancing and music. Tündér will dance the night away under the moonlight. They have powerful magical powers and own magical jewels and herbs with which they cast spells. Their body fluids, including tears, milk, and saliva, have magical properties and are tools of enchantment.
Tündér are not just the stuff of fairy tales. Testimony from Hungarian witch trials indicates that these spirits were once intensely venerated. Individual Tündér are known by name. The most famous is Tündér Ilona (“Fairy Helen”). Others include Tündér Maros, Dame Rampson, and Dame Vénétur.
The Milky Way is their path and dance floor; the forked part of the Milky Way is called in Hungarian tündérek forduloja, meaning “where the Tündér turn around.”
Encyclopedia of Spirits: The Ultimate Guide to the Magic of Fairies, Genies, Demons, Ghosts, Gods & Goddesses – Written by Judika Illes Copyright © 2009 by Judika Illes.