Writing Prompts: Trolls

For once, when I reference trolls, I am not referring to the internet idiots that you find across social media, but rather the Nordic legend. After covering the Christmas season, we’re back to my daughter’s suggestion of posts about mythical creatures, and since we had explored Cambodian legends last time, we’re on to the letter D, and Denmark, for our next country.

The classic troll is said to live under a bridge, and sometimes extracts a toll for crossing the bridge, though they are also said to live far from humans, and are at the very least unhelpful to humans and their interests. Sometimes they are described as grotesque and slow-witted creatures, yet they are also regarded as strong, and dangerous. In some Nordic legends, trolls were scared of lightening, which could be a reference to the Norse God Thor, and his battles with the creatures. Sunlight is considered dangerous to trolls in some of the stories, and will turn a troll to stone.

Despite the primary representation of trolls as brutish and ugly, there are varieties of the myth that depict them as human-like in appearance. These trolls are said to live far from humans, and are considered dangerous on account of how they are not Christian (no prizes for guessing where that notion came from). Nonetheless, the image of almost boulder-like beings is the one that popular culture has latched onto, and this has helped inspire the Trolls films, albeit the films present trolls as being a bit more pleasant than the legend!

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