The goblin of the Garfagnana

We all know the elves, they are little creatures of the popular tradition that in some cases originate from the Lares, who were the protector spirits of the house. Goblins are very small and often spiteful. There are very many sprites.

Illustration by Anne Anderson from Grimm's Fairy Tales (London and Glasgow 1922)
Illustration by Anne Anderson from Grimm's Fairy Tales (London and Glasgow 1922)

One of the goblin who most inhabited my childhood is Rumpelstiltskin, the famous imp of the homonymous tale of the Brothers Grimm who, when he is defeated, beats and beats his feet so hard that he sinks to the ground with his right foot and then grabbing his left foot and tearing himself apart in two with anger.


Today, however, I want to tell about an elf closer to me, the typical elf of Garfagnana, the Linchetto. The Linchetto as every goblin is very spiteful. If, staying in Grafragnana, you feel cold in the night could be the Linchetto that pulls you the blankets, so as if you suddenly woke up prey to a sleep apnea very probably the Linchetto has sat on your chest to disturb your rest. The Linchetto is capricious, he is tolerant with the children that he loves but cannot stand the elderly ladies or young couples to whom he loves to spite. Often intertwined and knotted tails of animals in the stables at night.


The Linchetto is difficult to see, he often has the appearance of a breeze that ruffles the leaves. To keep away our annoying friend who is a country sprite but is very fussy, just stick a juniper branch on the door or put a pot of chickpeas on the bedside table. He, due to some unknown law, will be forced to count the endless leaves of the juniper or the chickpeas in the vase, but being also very distracted he will often lose the account having to start over every time.

Now, if you will to pass through this wild area of Tuscany, the Grafagnana, you will think of me because I will have saved you from the clutches of the Linchetto!

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