ONE day when the birds were all together, one of them said, “I have been watching men, and I saw that they had a king. Let us too have a king.” “Why?” asked the...
Country and County: Sweden
‘Another form of spectre animal is the kirk-grim, which is believed to haunt many churches. Sometimes it is a dog, sometimes a pig, sometimes a horse, the haunting spectre being the spirit of an animal buried alive in the churchyard for the purpose of scaring away the sacrilegious.
Henry Peter Brougham, 1st Baron Brougham and Vaux (Born 19 September 1778 – Died 7 May 1868), Lord Chancellor of Great Britain, was born and brought up in Edinburgh. According to his autobiography, ‘The Life and Times of Henry, Lord Brougham’ he had a strange experience whilst travelling in Sweden.
Hills, mounds and burial sites. Places which have a timeless allure. Such places can be seen and regarded as mythically liminal, a place that it is not a place. A place outside of time. A place where the living freely walk with the dead. Barrows are just such places.
Thomas Keightley in his The Fairy Mythology, Illustrative of the Romance and Superstition of Various Countries (1850) gives the following account which was narrated in the form of a legal declaration.
According to ‘The Science of Fairy Tales’ (1891) by Edwin Sidney Hartland ‘A clergyman’s wife in Swedish Lappmark, the cleverest midwife in all Sweden, was summoned one fine summer’s evening to attend a mysterious being of Troll race and great might, called Vitra. At this unusual call she took counsel with her husband, who, however, deemed it best for her to go.
Of the manner in which the trolls celebrate Christmas Eve there are traditions throughout the whole North. At that time it is not advisable for Christian men to be out. On the heaths witches and little trolls ride, one on a wolf, another on a broom or a shovel, to their assemblies, where they dance under their stones.
Benjamin Thorpe gives this folk tale in his ‘Northern Mythology: Comprising the Principal Popular Traditions and Superstitions of Scandinavia, North Germany, and the Netherlands’ (1851) ‘On the wall of Voxtorp church in Småland there is a painting representing a knight named Herve Ulf, when one Christmas morning he received a drinking horn from a troll-wife with one hand, while with his