As Christmas traditions and carols fill the air, ancient legends and folklore stories awaken from the darkness in which they slumber. Any person who has the lighthearted joy of a child in them, would recognize the tale of Saint Nicolas, or as his more popular name, Santa Claus. But if you do not wish to get into the holiday spirit, you may know of another creature coming for you, specifically a pagan god by the name of Krampus.
This legend originates from Germany, with the name of this alpine beast being derived from the German word “Krampen”, meaning claw. The beast’s appearance is the substance of nightmares, from the goat hooves, grungy black fur, and long tongue to the sharp teeth and piercing eyes.
This legend is “celebrated” on the night of December 5th. The main activity that takes place, is the drunken men that run through the streets dressed as the foul creature. This event is often a danger to civilians because they are at risk of being beaten by wooden rods and switches.
No one is quite sure why these people decided to run through the streets, but in National Geographic’s article pertaining to the anti-Claus, Tanya Basu stated, “Maybe it’s a way for humans to get in touch with their animalistic side.”
Information taken from National Geographic and Mental floss.
Featured image taken from Avclub.