- (in Scottish legends) a water spirit, usually having the form of a horse, reputed to cause drownings or to warn those in danger of drowning.
Origin of kelpie1
Origin of kelpie2
Examples from the Web for kelpie
It was the Kelpie, with an empty bag—a pillow-case, I believe—in her hand.
My only excuse for them is, that I hoped by them to drive the Kelpie away.
I began a series of persecutions of the Kelpie on my own account.
The kelpie gave a hideous roar, and turned away to run from the wimble.
I thought at first it was the Kelpie come after me, for it was a tall woman.
- an Australian breed of sheepdog, originally developed from Scottish collies, having a smooth coat of various colours and erect ears
- (in Scottish folklore) a water spirit in the form of a horse that drowned its riders
Word Origin and History for kelpie
1747, Scottish, of unknown origin, perhaps related to Gaelic colpach "heifer, steer, colt;" colpa "cow, horse." The Lowland name of a demon in the shape of a horse that was reputed to haunt lakes and rivers and to delight in causing drownings. But unlike its equivalents in Danish (nøkken) and Icelandic (nykur), it occasionally was benevolent, especially to millers by keeping their streams running.