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Heinzelmann was a kobold who haunted Hudemühlen Castle.

Hinzelmann or Heinzelmann[citation needed] (sometimes called Luring) was a kobold in the mythology of northern Germany. He was described as a household spirit of ambivalent nature, similar to Puck (Robin Goodfellow).[1] Like Puck, he would provide good luck and perform household tasks, but would become malicious if not appeased.[1]

Descriptions in mythology[edit]

Heinzelmann's myth says that he started haunting the castle Hudemühlen in 1584 after being cast from the forest of Bohemia.[1] At first he was shy, later he was conversing and jesting openly with all inhabitants of the house, including the master.[1] He sang verses, the most repeated one said that evil luck would take his place if he was ever chased out.[1]

Heinzelmann usually took the form of a congenial child in red velvet.[2] In one tale he showed his true form to a maid, who fainted; it was that of a small child, around four years of age, stabbed and slashed with two swords.[2]

Some local lore dating back generations puts the Heinzelman in the role of elves, leaving trinkets or candies in the shoes of well-behaved children, when said shoes are left by the door in the days leading up to Christmas.

Pop culture[edit]

Hinzelmann is an important character in the novel American Gods by Neil Gaiman, in which he protects Lakeside, a fictional town in Wisconsin from economic trouble in return for the town's children as sacrifices. His fictional history describes him as being a god to a tribe of nomads living in the Black Forest before its invasion by the Romans.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e Boys (it's a pseudonym) (1852), The boys' own story-book, by the best authors, pp. 88–90
  2. ^ a b Ludwig Bechstein, Deutsches Sagenbuch, Leipzig, 1853

External links[edit]