Stories are told of the Piskies, Spriggans, Skillywiddens
The Piskies were the good little people who helped the elderly and infirm with their household tasks. They are described as wearing wigs of grey lichen, with bright unwinking eyes staring out from wrinkled faces. Though they could be mischievous too, people were said to be piskey-led when benighted, losing all sense of time and place they would wander helplessly about until they fell into an exhausted sleep.
Spriggans were bad. They haunted the hilltops and ancient burial mounds guarding the supposedly buried treasures lying beneath. They could call up unseasonable bad weather and raise up whirlwinds and sudden storms and mists.
Skillywiddens were just as mischievous. They could turn the milk sour just for fun. They played around the farms and moorland and often led the stock astray.
The Knockers were believed to be the spirits of old miners because they were found only in the mines. In the eerie surroundings of the old workings by the flicker of candlelight it was easy to believe in these underground sprites. The sounds of their activities with picks, shovels and drills was a familiar one and many a miner would leave a portion of his crowst (lunchtime meal), usually a piece of pasty for the knockers to enjoy. After all, knockers only worked in profitable parts of the mines so you needed to encourage them.
The Mermaid of Zennor
In Zennor Church there is a pew end carved in the shape of a mermaid holding a comb and mirror. The story is told of the days long ago when from the sea she heard Matthew Trewhella singing in the church and came in to listen. They fell in love and lived happily in Zennor together. However, one day Matthew wanted to go out fishing although the mermaid begged him not to. A wave washed him into the sea and with a despairing cry the mermaid dived in after him. They were never seen again
There are many stories about the Giants who had homes in Cornwall. Indeed the pantomime Jack and the Beanstalk is supposedly based on the tale of one of the giants of St Michael's Mount near Penzance.
Tregeagle was set the task of emptying Dosmary Pool on Bodmin Moor, but this proved impossible and he was sent to Padstow to plait ropes of sand near the mouth of the river Camel. The people of Padstow found it difficult to take out their fishing boats because of the sandbanks and Tregeagle was blamed. He was sent from Padstow to Porthleven where his job was to dredge loads of shingle from the banks of the estuary. However, he slipped and dropped his load which formed Loe Bar at the mouth blocking the river.