These ideas are older than our science, for the name, lemures, given them means "ghosts."
If neglected they became spiteful, and were then known as lemures.
Far back in the dimly lighted corners loomed the monstrous forms of the Lares and lemures.
Apuleius, however, is wholly uncritical, and the distinction between Larvæ and lemures is certainly not borne out by facts.
And, methinketh, a dishonest man will have sundrie frights from the Lares and lemures.
For it was uncertain whether the paternal Manes were good spirits, Lares, or evil spirits, and lemures.
Other spirits, the lemures and Larvæ, more nearly correspond to our ghosts.
I had read of banshees, lemures and leprechauns; they were the ghosts and the fairies of ignorance but they were not like this.
Their hypothetical common ancestor, the Archipithecus, may have descended directly or indirectly from a branch of the lemures.
There is, however, some confusion even among the ancients themselves, as to the respective qualities of the larvæ and lemures.