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Folklore, the knowledge of the "folk" or people, represents the traditional beliefs and stories shared by a group and passed on to succeeding generations. Folklore reflects group identity, be it a family, neighborhood, village, country, or faith. Folklore is said to be the creative expression of a common past that enables individuals to better understand themselves and others.

Folklore is an important aspect of genealogy, not only for its ability to inform the beliefs and traditions of individual families and communities, but also for the historical and biographical clues that may be contained within the stories. Folklore, myth, and legend, frequently held to be fancy are often grounded in fact.

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