elves: Indic counterpart?

Valerie J Roebuck vjroebuck at MACUNLIMITED.NET
Tue Feb 8 13:32:35 EST 2005

Pace Monier-Williams, vetAla *certainly* doesn't mean elf--it's some
sort of undead spirit that animates corpses.   (Come to think of it,
it might do for 'wraith', and certainly for the things in the Dead

Valerie J Roebuck
Manchester, UK

At 5:07 am -0800 8/2/05, Chris Haskett wrote:
>I think my expertise here tends more toward the Tolkien and less the
>indic lore. Nevertheless, here's an idea  Allen's original criteria
>The only
>thing I could think of was gandharvas, since they are beautiful,
>elegants, and sprightly, but they are erotic in a way in which elves (at
>least Tolkien's) aren't.
>Others have noted longevity, ugliness, short and roly-poly.  Only
>the first applies--the latter three are for dwarves, clearly
>vamana--unless one wanted to reserve that for hobbits, who are also
>short. Elves also needn't be only female.
>I think to include longevity, exclude eroticism to some degree, and
>bring in some connection with forests and supernatural powers,
>perhaps vanadevatas would be the best bet.
>Monier-Williams has vidhyAdharaH, apadevatA, vetAlaH, bhUtaH,
>rAkshamaH, and pizAcah for elf--please forgive my lack of
>familiarity with the transliteration.  See his English-Sanskrit
>dictionary page 221.   I still think vandadevata has something to
>say for itself.
>Chris Haskett
>University of Wisconsin-Madison
>Do you Yahoo!?
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