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She Brings Bad News: The Scary Slavic Household Spirit Called Kikimora

Thursday, October 6, 2016 17:15
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She Brings Bad News: The Scary Slavic Household Spirit Called Kikimora

Some spirits are thought to be dangerous even by people who don't necessarily believe in them. One of the scariest creatures in world mythologies is the spirit from the Slavic culture known as Kikimora.

In literature, she is also known as sziszimora or szyszymora. The meaning of her name may come from the Finnish language, where “kikke mörkö” means scarecrow. No matter what the roots of the word are, it is used for a being without a body, a nightmare, or a scary spirit which disturbs people at night. Kikimora is a creature which settles in a house and doesn't want to leave – making the lives of people who live there unbearable.

Kikimora is usually blamed for sleep paralysis, nightmares, and anything bad which happens to food at night. She was well-known in the territory of Ruś, but is also known in several Slavic countries. Her story also spread to many other countries. Her appearance is usually associated with bad news.

‘The Nightmare’ (1781) by Henry Fuseli.

‘The Nightmare’ (1781) by Henry Fuseli. (Public Domain)

In most legends she is a messenger of bad tidings, but there are some stories which shed a positive light on the spirit. Her name is also related to the sound of the spindle she was said to use – a scary sound, which was a prophecy for a bad or tragic situation.

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  • If house is badly kept, Kikimora teases people by whistling or tickling them. She also spins string at nights and if you see her, you die. If house is well kept, Kikimora helps tending chicken and sometimes in other household chores. Only lazy wife might consider Kikimora terrifying. Most men are so dimwitted what comes to women that they need Kikimora to reveal to them their wives are miserable and lazy c*nts. :lol:

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