Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The 12 Scares of Christmas: The Kallikantzaros

Tonight, we continue a seasonal series, exploring the darker side of Christmas. In this season of the darkest nights of the year and ancient traditions celebrating the passing of the season, those of us who are lucky enough to have haunted hearts appreciate the darker, creepy and sometimes terrifying aspects of the winter holiday-- some of which could not be more a part of the Christmas holiday in their own right.


by Christos in Painting

 For this tenth scare of Christmas, we head to Greece. To meet the Kallikantzaros. The Kallikantzaros are goblin like creatures who roam the Greek countryside during the 12 days of Christmas. Of course. Variations of the creature exist in other Southeastern European cultures, but appear most predmoniantly in Greece. 

 The legend of the Kallikantzaros goes something like this. The whole year round, the goat-footed goblins spend their time toiling under the surface of the Earth, sawing at what is called the World Tree, in order to literally bring down the world. When they begin to finish their work toppling the tree, Christmas happens, and they are released out into the world to spread their terror. When the sun dawns on the day of the Epiphany on January 6, they returned to their underground world to find that the tree has healded itself, and they must begin their work again-- until the next Christmas. 

 And there you have the tenth scare of Christmas. 

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