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Origins of the Goblin

With a reputation for causing mischief and doing wrong, goblins have appeared in literary publications to movies, such as “Troll” and “Night of the Demons.” In this article, you will learn where the creature originated and some of the fairy tales and stories that have used goblins as characters.

In folklore, goblins are small creatures that usually exhibit mischievous and evil tendencies with a disfigured look that appears human-like. The majority of tales involving goblins show a creature that is short, but there have been some stories that show some that are the same size as an adult human. Since there are similarities between goblins (which have Anglo-Saxon origins) between the Celtic brownie ”“ it is thought that there is a connection that dates back in history.

Some tales state that the goblin has magical powers.

Goblins have appeared in the following folklore text:

”¢    An English tale called “The Benevolent Goblin” from Gesta Romanorum, which was a Latin collection of anecdotes and tales that were most likely gathered around the end of the 13th century or the beginning of the 14th.
”¢    The British author Gerald Willoughby-Meade wrote a book on the supernatural that he titled, “Chinese Ghouls and Goblins.” The Chinese folklore tales filled the 431-page book, which was published in London in 1928.
”¢    Welsh folklore spoke of the Welsh mythological figure named Gwyn ap Nudd, who was the ruler over the goblin tribe.
”¢    German legends spoke of the malevolent goblin known as Erlking, which appears in a handful of poems and ballads. The creature haunts the forests and kidnaps travelers ”“ taking them to meet their deaths.
”¢    A Japanese fairy tale includes the Goblin of Adachigahara.
”¢    There is a Danish fairy tale that features the Goblin Chief of Norway, which appears in The Elf Mound written by Hans Christian Andersen and published in 1845. The plot concentrates on a feast held in an elf mound for the Goblin Chief and his two sons. This is a time where the sons will choose their elf brides.
”¢    The French fairy tale highlights the Goblin Pony in the Grey Fairy Book (written by Andrew Lang in 1900), which joins a collection of different fairy tale.
”¢    In The Boy Who Drew Cats, this Japanese fairy tale speaks of the Goblin Rat.
”¢    In 1969, A Book of Ghosts and Goblins was published, which included the tale of the Goblins at the Bath House.
”¢    There is a Dutch fairy tale called the Goblins Turned to Stone.
”¢    In Indian tales, the major Hindu deity named Shiva had a gang of goblins and ghouls on her side.
”¢    In the Indian fairy tale called Twenty-Two Goblins, the chapters are separated by a number of different tales centered on ‘goblins.’
”¢    One of the characters in a Moldovan Gypsy folktale is called King Gobb.