Folk tales often speak about the primeval forest as a place dangerous, mysterious, how should expect troubles and troubles and better unnecessarily close to him not to approach. Obviously, this traditional perception of the forest is not associated with wild animals (although reasons to be afraid of wolves and bears used to be much more than now), and with the idea of some supernatural beings living there. And the chief of the Forest mythological creatures was, of course, the devil.
The forest can not be without a host
The notion that the forest is inhabited by special creatures associated with him supernatural relations are among the most ancient strata of religious consciousness. Yet there was no idea of the one God, and here is a variety of options woodland creatures who protected the forest and the trees from uninvited guests and themselves were not too friendly, already existed.
Reports of devils, roamed the dense forests, welcome to the Old Testament — to say nothing of the ancient pagan beliefs, where creatures like fauns and satyrs (half human, half animal) were common, popular and widespread. Now scientists are trying to find the origins of the image of devil in the human mind as a purely religious thinking sources (wood, as well as other natural areas have to be animated) and a possible "real" prototype (version put forward that for the devils took survivors Neanderthals, Bigfoot and the like).
Folk beliefs say that you can see the devil is usually only in the form in which he wishes to appear before the man. The most common of all, he wants to appear in quite a humanoid image, usually either old or moody powerful man in grubby clothes, which gives its distance from the world of ordinary people. Always a goblin looks that way, different legends challenge one another. According to some versions of the devil is always in a humanlike way, on the other, he can change the appearance, turning in any forest animal (except poultry), in the third goblin in its natural state is a kind of forest monster, which is a cross between a bear and a goat.
Goblin need to bring in the Red Book?
Behavior devil in folklore in general limited to its role as guardian of the forest. In this respect, he was responsible for all the inhabitants of the forest, resulting in the devil is actually the head of the forest. It is not too sentimental, but the owner is responsible, the main task of which is the observance of the natural balance, the preservation of small animal species from extinction and limit the number of animals bred too. In this regard, clear strained and sometimes openly hostile relationship with the people sprites, as people actively invading the homeland of devil, cut wood and hunt animals. Therefore, to meet the devil, according to legend, for a person more often than not for the good. Leshy luring people into a thicket, where his pranks or intimidates the last to madness or to death.
However, the further the legend of the sprites are moving away from antiquity, the more "social" in them is, and goblin. Gradually there was consideration that devil and man can enter into a business relationship. For example, hunters may carry out its activities in the forest, if only to agree with the local leshim — and most agree it was possible due to alcohol, to which the goblins were big fans.
Or if, immediately next to the forest grazing herds of cattle, their shepherds have been the beginning of the summer season to give as a devil with boards per animal: otherwise have to wait for the systematic attacks on the herd. But even in this scenario, goblins and people were enemies rather than partners: the devils suspected in the kidnapping of girls and young children. However, if the girls it was about ordinary violence (in some cases tell how the girls come into contact with leshimi in exchange for wealth), the kids are trying to persuade and seduce good attitude (so leave them kids from abusive parents). The relationship between leshimi usually described as sophisticated as the goblins are lonely and being closed, but there are versions of entire families or even villages sprites in the dense forests.