Clarissa Johal: #FolkloreThursday - #Scandinavian Water Spirits

Thursday, November 15, 2018

#FolkloreThursday - #Scandinavian Water Spirits

This is Part Two of Folklore Thursday - Scandinavian Water Spirits.
You can read Part One HERE

Bjørn som Tegner GFDL
CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Fossegrim is a troll or water spirit who plays the fiddle. An exceptionally talented fiddler, he is often willing to teach his skills in exchange for food offerings. Many stories tell of travelers who have tried to offer something less than acceptable, resulting in the traveler being taught to tune rather than play his instrument. Fossegrim can also lure travelers into lakes and streams in order to drown them.





Theodor Kittelsen [Public domain],
via Wikimedia Commons

The nøkken is a fresh water relative of Fossegrim. The nøkken is especially attracted to women and children and will play the violin to lure them onto thin ice where he is waiting for them. Nøkken can shapeshift into a horse or a man. In their horse form, they will try and make the victim touch their long tail. If they do, the victim will often become stuck and dragged under the ice into the depths of the lake. The nøkken are particularly dangerous after sunset. Swimmers can protect themselves by throwing steel into the water. The nøkken may also be defeated by calling out their name, which causes them to lose power. 


A draugen is the spirit of someone who died at sea. Always evil, they exist only to guard undersea treasure and drown the living. They wear fisherman's clothing, have sharp teeth, skin made of rotting fish scales and a tangle of seaweed where their head should be. The draugen also have magical abilities. They can affect your dreams, shapeshift, control the weather, and walk through stone. They sail the seas in half of a boat with weathered sails. If a traveler spots a draugen, they are in mortal danger unless they can race the draugen and win.

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