Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/5611
Trolls are recurring characters Icelandic folktales, there are numerous stories about them turning into stones and abducting children. One of the most famous trolls in Icelandic folktales is the female ogre, Grýla. While she is best known for her influence in old folktales, Icelandic parents did, and still do, scare their children from certain places or from misbehaving by telling them that Grýla could come and abduct them. The main focus of this thesis is on Grýla, and her household is also introduced. Her husband Leppalúði, her sons whom are well known as well (as the Yule lads) and her vicious cat. A major part of this thesis is also about how Grýla is depicted in both pictures and stories. Poems from as early as the 17th century to more modern stories such as Adventure on Christmas Eve is analyzed. Whether Grýla is an animal, a troll or some kind of a breed between those two will be discussed with reflection on what it can mean that she has all these animalistic features. The focus is also on other creatures in folktales and fairy tales that resemble Grýla, they will be compared to her and to each other. Famous trolls from two Icelandic children‘s books; The Go-Between and A Giant Love Story are used in comparison to Grýla; and to show that even though they are of the same race they are not necessarily similar in all ways. Grýla stories can be categorized as both cautionary and folktales, these genres are examined as well with a focus on the main themes; cannibalism, violence, fear, courage and heroes.