Cu Síth


12" x 12"


Cu Síth, pronounced coo-shee, literally means “fairy dog”—Cu meaning “dog” in Gaelic, and Sith meaning “fairy.” In the tradition of black dog lore, the Cu Síth is thought of as a harbinger of death. An excerpt from Superstitions of the Highlands and Islands of Scotland: Collected entirely from Oral Sources, written by John Gregorson Campbell in 1900, describes the Cu Síth:

‘The Fairy hound... Its motion was silent and gliding, and its bark a rude clamour (blaodk). It went in a straight line, and its bay has been last heard, by those who listened for it, far out at sea. Its immense footmarks, as large as the spread of the human hand, have been found next day traced in the mud, in the snow, or on the sands. Others say it makes a noise like a horse galloping, and its bay is like that of another dog, only louder. There is a considerable interval between each bark, and at the third (it only barks thrice) the terror-struck hearer is overtaken and destroyed, unless he has by that time reached a place of safety.'

This print captures the baying of the Cu Síth, its glowing eyes, and very notable, shaggy, green coat of fur.