Of course, Christmas is supposed to be the season of giving and joyous time for all. It is the time to crawl under a warm blankie with a mug of hot chocolate and binge-watch all the Home Alone movies. Hence, it may come as a surprise to you when we say that there are many traditions that have a macabre and savage idea of Christmas. Naturally, the festival of Christmas was taken from ancient pagan traditions and many of these traditions had a monster associated wit this season. Take a look:
Krampus is considered to be St Nicholas’ demonic sidekick who beats the naughty kids, stuffs them into a sack and takes them to Hell. All of this takes place even as St Nicholas is delivering presents to the nice kids.
He is also known as the Icelandic Yule Cat or the Christmas cat who may eat all the naughty kids. In an old Icelandic tradition, perhaps in a bid to encourage children to work hard, parents would often bring up the story of Jolakotturinn who would come to know who the lazy ones were (on account of their not having any new clothes) and terrorise them.
Frau Percha is not someone whom you should encounter when you’ve been sinful – she is said to be able to rip out your internal organs and fill them with garbage. She is witch belonging to legends in Germany and Austria and hands out presents as well (to the good ones) during the 12 days of Christmas.
Perchta’s followers in places like Switzerland are called the Straggele. They partake of offerings made to the witch by people hoping for good luck and health in the coming year. At times, Perchta allows them to dole out punishments on the kids and they take the bad ones and toss them into the air.
Gryla is one of Iceland’s most infamous creatures. According to Atlas Obscura, she is perpetually in a bad mood due to her insatiable hunger for children. Every Christmas, she comes down from her mountainous abode and goes about hunting naughty children.
(Image credits: Wikimedia Commons)