What exactly are fairies? And where exactly do they originate? When you question various people, you will receive different responses each time you do so. These mysterious figures have been interpreted as anything from gods to the souls of infants who have not been baptized to an ancient race of miniature humans. They are the protectors of animals and holy natural sites, yet at one time they may have been thought of as gods. They are the spirits of nature. I've always had the impression that the answer was somewhere in the middle. Additionally, as was discussed before, this is contingent upon the culture as well.