I am a sucker for folklore. Doesn’t matter from what culture or country, I enjoy a good story, especially when it comes to spirits, which is why I purchased this adorable Tomte from a Scandinavian gift shop in Rehobeth Beach, Delaware.
However, don’t let its cuteness fool you. The Tomte can be mischievous if offended. Here’s the lore behind these sprites:
Tomte is a mythical creature of Scandinavian folklore, believed in ancient times to be the soul or the spirit of the very first inhabitor of the farm, who to this day dwells in the burial mounds on the same farm. Tomte are known for being little household helpers. If you are well behaved and show respect, he will help care for you, your dwelling and belongings. On the other hand, he is easily offended by any bad language or misconduct, which may cause him to engage in mischief such as tying the cows’ tails together in the barn, turning objects upside-down, and breaking things. Tomte may be small, however he is very strong, in both body and spirit.
I don’t work on a farm, but I am working on my next book, so maybe if I behave (i.e., work hard and don’t cuss too much), the Tomte will help me meet my November deadline—and inspire a story down the line.
Otherwise, I’m a bit freaked out about whose tails she’ll be tying together. 😉