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Pixies Stealing Food 1877
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Pixies Stealing Food 1877


According to 19th century lore, pixies were benign but mischievous creatures that usually appeared at night, gathering in large numbers when people were asleep. They had slanting eyes and hair that pointed upwards and they were plump little sprites. This charming series of illustrations was found in a journal kept by a wealthy person as a souvenir of a Grand Tour of Europe. They show pixies making off with food from a dinner table. Two of them wrestle to open a mussel shell, others triumphantly haul off a chicken or grab wine and cheese. Another pixie dances on a walnut while his friend keeps watch. These fantasy images are likely to have been collected as a souvenir of dinner on board a ship since they were all pasted onto the same page dated 1877. The opposite side of each illustration was blank but the gorgeous colors of these whimsical pixie images are still vibrant after all this time.

Courtesy Lou Greenstein.

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