The Xanas are water nymphs in mythology from Asturia. Asturia is an interesting and often overlooked place, a principality on the northern coast of Spain it was never conquered by the Muslims, like the rest of Spain, but remained a Christian enclave.

Xana is pronounced HA-na – the x is like the x in the Spanish pronounciation of Mexico.

The Xanas are water fairies, beautiful women with blue eyes and blond hair – not the usual type of Spanish beauty. They live in the streams and small rivers of the Asturian mountains as well as in fountains and grottos. They spend most of their time combing their gorgeous hair with golden combs and singing. They are kind to those who aid them, sharing their treasures. However, they will destroy anyone who wantonly invades their domains.

The Xana are known under a variety of other names: Xaira, Inxangana, Ondina, Encantada, Mora, Mouras, Xacias, etc.. They are related to the Galician witches and the Lamia of the Spanish Basque. They are associated with the Roman Diana and the Celtic Ana, whom they may be descended from.

Click here for more on the nymphs in mythology.

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