Ban-shee

banshee

[ban-shee, ban-shee]
noun
(in Irish folklore) a spirit in the form of a wailing woman who appears to or is heard by members of a family as a sign that one of them is about to die.
Also, banshie.


Origin:
1765–75; < Irish bean sīdhe woman of a fairy mound; see sídh

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World English Dictionary
banshee (ˈbænʃiː, bænˈʃiː)
 
n
(in Irish folklore) a female spirit whose wailing warns of impending death
 
[C18: from Irish Gaelic bean sídhe, literally: woman of the fairy mound]

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Word Origin & History

banshee
1771, from phonetic spelling of Ir. bean sidhe "female of the Elves," from bean "woman" (from PIE span class="foreign">*gwen-; see queen) + sidhe, from sith "fairy" or sid "fairy mound." Specifically, one who calls to the spirits of the dead.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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