The Catholic church offered several explanations; faeries were fallen
angels which sided with neither God nor Satan when Satan tried to take
over heaven and was cast out. God cast them onto the earth rather than
punishing them as much as the demons and casting them into hell. Some of
them fell into the water, and live in a land called Tir fo Thuinn (the
land beneath the waves), which is supposed to contain beautiful palaces.
Some of the Scottish people believe that some of them remained in the sky
and became the northern lights.
Other priests told the people that Eve had many children, and she was embarassed that she had so many, so she hid some of them from God when he came and asked to meet her children. (another version of this story says that some of them were all dirty, so she was embarassed and hid them) God punished her for hiding her children, and said that since she had hidden them from Him, he would hide them from all mankind, and thus they became invisible (and were called the Hidden People). In any case, the church taught that faeries were unable to partake of the grace of God and achieve salvation.
Still other people believed that fairies were the ghosts of ancestors or others.
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