The Green Children Mystery – Woolpit

The Green Children Mystery - Woolpit

In this article we will be taking a look at the 900-year-old paranormal report that still manages to captivate listeners – the green children mystery.

What are the facts behind the three historical accounts from the 12th century detailing the appearance of these strange children in Woolpit?

Let’s take a closer look…

The Brother and Sister

The English village of Woolpit received a strange visitation during the reign of King Stephen, when a brother and sister turned up, with green skin.

The village of Woolpit developed it’s name from the wolf pits that used to be dug around the area – the children were first discovered climbing out of one of these pits.

They were dressed in strange clothing made of fibers nobody had encountered before, they also spoke in a language that nobody understood.

The English village of Woolpit and the children

The villagers worried about their health at first, and began offering them food. The children seemed to be completely confused by the food displayed to them, except for the dried beans (which they happily devoured!).

The Villagers

At first, the villagers of Woolpit were a little afraid of these strange green children…but they were only children after all. They decided to take them in and look after their welfare, they even baptized them in the local church.

The brother appeared to be the younger of the two, and he grew gravely ill not long after he was baptized. The village pulled together in an attempt to improve his health, but it was in vain, he died suddenly from his illness.

The older sister survived, and before long she got used to the food offered to her by the villagers. The more she ate – the quicker the green tinge to her skin disappeared.

She eventually even learned English, and was now able to tell the villagers her story…

St. Martin’s Land

The girl claimed to be from a place named St. Martin’s Land – a location where everything was green.

She explained that both herself and her brother were in the process of herding their parent’s cattle, when several of the cows broke off and entered a cave.

They followed the lost cattle into the cave, then chased after the sound of the bells around their neck…until the popped out of the wolf pit in a strange new world!


One of the historians who recorded the green children’s story says the girl was given the name Agnes. She eventually found work as a teenager in the home of one of the wealthier villagers – Richard de Caine.

But Agnes spent many years looking for a partner, as her personality differed from the other village girls.

She became known as slightly impertinent – not showing due respect for the male population in her village.

Eventually she did settle down, and marry.

The Green Skinned Children

Explanations for the origins and meanings of this story vary widely. It seems to divide opinion among historians.

Some historians think it was nothing more than a fable, or fairy tale, that was created at the time and developed into something much bigger over the centuries.

Other expert historians believe that the report probably has its roots in a true event, although that truth may have been colored over the years.

The Green Skinned Children

We are talking about 900 years ago now – a time where most of Europe was locked in some kind of brutal civil war.

Many Flemish-speaking immigrants ended up on the shores of Britain as they attempted to get away from the mess in their home countries (sounds familiar – doesn’t it?).

The peculiar language that the children spoke could have simply been a European language, and their skin could of developed a greenish tint through malnutrition or anemia, due to their long journey.

If you have any thoughts or opinions on the green children mystery, please leave them in the comment section below.