The image of a banshee.
An example of a banshee is a ghost who enters a house wailing as a warning.
Origin of bansheeIrish bean sidhe from bean, woman (see gyno-) + sith, fairy
Origin of bansheeIrish Gaelic bean sídhe woman of the fairies, banshee bean woman ( from Old Irish ben ; see gwen- in Indo-European roots.) sídhe fairy ( from Old Irish síde ) ( genitive of síd fairy mound ; see sed- in Indo-European roots.)
A banshee was originally merely a fairy woman who sang a caoineadh (lament) for recently-deceased members of certain families. Translations of Irish works into English made a distinction between the banshee and other fairy folk that the original language and original stories do not seem to have, but from whence sprung the current image of the banshee.