We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

Which Country Has the Scariest Christmas Folklore?

Updated May 23, 2024
Our promise to you
InfoBloom is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At InfoBloom, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Santa Claus might keep a list of which children have been naughty and which have been nice, but even the bad ones don't have to worry about Father Christmas turning them into supper. The same can't be said about those unfortunate little ones in Iceland.

According to Icelandic folklore, an enormous and hideous witch named Grýla lives in the mountains, and during Christmas she descends upon towns in search of misbehaving kids. Those she catches get tossed into a bag and brought back home with her. Grýla either devours them as they are or mixes them into her favorite stew -- and legend holds that she always has plenty of stew to eat.

The story of Grýla dates back to at least the 13th century, when she was written about in Norse mythology, but she wasn't associated with Yuletide until centuries later. Terry Gunnell, who leads the Folkloristics Department at the University of Iceland, says Grýla has been one of the most popular characters in Icelandic folklore for ages. "You don't mess with Grýla," Gunnell said. "She ate one of her husbands when she got bored with him. In some ways, she’s the first feminist in Iceland."

Some other spooky Christmas traditions:

  • South African children are told of a bad boy who ate all of Santa's cookies; his grandma murdered him, and now his ghost haunts houses during Christmas.

  • In Norway, everyone is expected to hide their brooms on Christmas Eve to prevent evil witches from stealing them.

  • In Belgium, France, and Switzerland, Santa is rumored to be followed around by an evil butcher who deals with naughty children.

InfoBloom is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Link to Sources
Discussion Comments
InfoBloom, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

InfoBloom, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.