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undine (əndēnˈ, ŭnˈdēn) [key], in folklore, female water sprite who could acquire a soul by marrying a human being. If, however, her lover proved unfaithful, she had to return to the sea. The legend is the subject of Baron de La Motte-Fouqué's Undine and Jean Giraudoux's Ondine.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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