Grýla

Thursday, 30 January 2020

This is Grýla, the Icelandic Christmas witch. She lives in a cave in Iceland’s hinterlands, from where she attacks nearby townships, snatches up misbehaving children, and turns them into delicious stew….

Grýla did not get connected to Christmas until around the early 19th c. when poems began to associate her with the holiday…

Prior to that, she was „really a personification of the winter and the darkness and the snow getting closer and taking over the land again. Not only did she represent winter, she was seen as actually controlling the landscape“…

This is very interesting. In Slavic languages, the word Baba today primarily means grandmother. But it also used to mean mother, midwife, and Mother Earth. I talked about this in my post about „Baba’s day“ which is the celebration of midwives from Bulgaria…