Skip to Content

Each Uisge: A Guide to the Mythical Water Horse of Scotland

Each uisge, also known as the “water horse” in Scottish and Irish folklore, is a malevolent creature that inhabits lochs and other bodies of water. It is said to be far more vicious than the kelpie and can take on the form of a horse or a bird. According to legend, each uisge has the ability to deceive and torment mortals, often luring them into the water and drowning them.

Despite its malevolent nature, each uisge has become a popular figure in Scottish and Irish folklore, with many tales and legends featuring the creature. In some stories, the creature is portrayed as a shape-shifting spirit that can adopt human form, while in others, it is depicted as a black horse-like creature that can disappear into the water. Some tales even suggest that each uisge has the power to control the weather, causing storms and floods.

Despite its fearsome reputation, each uisge remains an important part of Scottish and Irish folklore. Its tales and legends have been passed down through generations, serving as cautionary tales to those who venture too close to the water’s edge.

Mythological Origins

Scottish Folklore

Each uisge is a water spirit in Scottish folklore, known for its viciousness and its ability to shapeshift into a horse. According to legend, the each uisge would lure unsuspecting travelers onto its back before dragging them into the water and devouring them. The creature was said to live in the sea inlets and lochs of Scotland, and could be identified by its webbed feet and green water weeds in its hair.

Celtic Legends

In Celtic legends, the each uisge is known as the aughisky or ech-ushkya in Ireland and cabbyl-ushtey on the Isle of Man. It is often depicted as a black horse-like creature, and is said to be capable of taking human form. The each uisge was believed to be a malevolent spirit, and was feared by those who lived near bodies of water.

The origins of the each uisge legend are unclear, but it is believed to have been inspired by the dangerous nature of Scotland’s waterways. The creature’s reputation as a fearsome predator has persisted for centuries, and it continues to be a popular subject in Scottish folklore and mythology.


Physical Appearance

Each uisge, also known as the water horse, is a supernatural creature found in the Scottish Highlands. It is described as a horse-like creature with a dark coat, and is often mistaken for a regular horse by unsuspecting travelers. However, there are some distinct physical characteristics that set the each uisge apart from an ordinary horse. For instance, it is said to have webbed feet, which allow it to swim with ease in water. Additionally, its eyes are said to be wide and staring, giving it a somewhat eerie appearance.

Supernatural Abilities

The each uisge is known for its supernatural abilities, which make it a formidable creature to encounter. One of its most notable abilities is shape-shifting, which allows it to transform into a human or animal form at will. It is said to use this ability to lure unsuspecting travelers into the water, where it can then drown them. Another ability the each uisge possesses is the power of illusion, which it uses to create mirages and other deceptive images that can confuse and disorient its prey.

In addition to these abilities, the each uisge is also known for its incredible strength and speed. It is said to be able to outrun even the fastest horses, and to have the strength of ten men. This makes it a formidable opponent for anyone who crosses its path.

Overall, the each uisge is a creature to be feared and respected, with a range of supernatural abilities that make it a formidable opponent. Its physical appearance, with its webbed feet and wide, staring eyes, only adds to its eerie and unsettling nature.

Tales and Stories

Famous Encounters

Each uisge, also known as the water horse, is a creature that has been the subject of many tales and stories in Scottish folklore. Many people have claimed to have seen the creature, and some have even had encounters with it.

One famous encounter was reported by a group of fishermen who were out on a loch in Scotland. They saw a horse-like creature in the water, and as they got closer, the creature suddenly disappeared. They later described the creature as having a scaly body and a long, thin neck.

Another famous encounter was reported by a group of children who were playing near a loch. They saw a beautiful white horse drinking from the water, but as they approached, the horse suddenly turned into a monster and chased after them.

Cautionary Tales

Many cautionary tales have been told about the each uisge, warning people to stay away from the water’s edge and to be careful when near bodies of water. One such tale tells the story of a man who was out fishing on a loch. He caught a fish that was so large he could barely reel it in. As he was struggling with the fish, he suddenly felt a tug on his line, and the next thing he knew, he was being pulled into the water by the each uisge.

Another cautionary tale tells the story of a young girl who was out walking near a loch. She saw a beautiful white horse drinking from the water and decided to approach it. As she got closer, the horse suddenly turned into a monster and dragged her into the water.

These cautionary tales serve as a reminder to be cautious around bodies of water and to respect the power of nature.

Cultural Significance

Literary References

Each uisge is a creature of Irish and Scottish Gaelic folklore. Its name has been anglicized in several ways, including aughisky. It is a malevolent water horse that is said to live in lochs and rivers. The legend of Each uisge has been mentioned in several literary works, including the novel “The Water Horse” by Dick King-Smith.

In the novel, the creature is depicted as a magical water horse that is tamed by a young boy. The story highlights the close relationship between the boy and the creature, which is a common theme in Scottish folklore.

Modern Depictions

Each uisge has been depicted in modern media in several ways. It has been featured in movies, TV shows, and video games. In the popular TV show “Outlander,” the creature is referred to as a kelpie and is depicted as a horse that transforms into a human.

In the video game “The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim,” the creature is called a “water horse” and is depicted as a hostile creature that attacks the player. The game is set in a fantasy world that is inspired by Norse mythology and Scottish folklore.

Overall, Each uisge has had a significant cultural impact on Irish and Scottish folklore. Its legend has been passed down through generations and has been adapted in modern media.

Comparative Mythology

Similar Creatures in Folklore

Each uisge is a water spirit in Scottish and Irish folklore that takes the form of a horse. It is similar to other water spirits such as the kelpie in Scottish folklore, the cabyll-ushtey in Manx folklore, and the ceffyl dwfr in Welsh folklore. All of these creatures are malevolent and are known to lure unsuspecting humans into the water to drown them.

Differences with Kelpies

While each uisge and kelpies share similarities in their appearance and behavior, there are some key differences between them. Kelpies are shape-shifting spirits that inhabit rivers and streams, while each uisge is found in sea inlets and lochs. Additionally, kelpies are usually described as black horse-like creatures, while each uisge is typically larger than an ordinary horse with webbed feet.

Comparative mythology can help identify shared themes and characteristics in myths from different cultures. By comparing each uisge to similar water spirits in other Celtic cultures, we can see that these creatures are a common theme in Celtic folklore. They serve as a reminder of the dangers of the water and the importance of respecting the power of nature.