Finnish death ‘elves’…

Apparently, in finnish folklore, there was an elf or fairy of the dead and graveyards, the Kalman vaki. The term also refers to the magical power to be gained from the dead and graveyards, unfortunately, most of the info I could find was in finnish. Which I now need to learn(always more things to do!). Similar to scotch fairy lore, where the dead and the ffayre-ffolke exist together, or certain of the dead are ‘translated’ into ffayre-ffolke/sylie wychtis.

To everyone that has read my blog, have a happy autumn/winter, and whichever holiday you celebrate. Due to seattle’s inclement weather, I didn’t get to see the blood red lunar eclipse, although, friends of mine saw it on a reservation north of town. It is going to be a very dark solstice in seattle this year.


About drcarlsonalbion

Musician in band earth. Folklore/History/Occult enthusiast, especially about British Isles.
This entry was posted in Cunning-folk/ffayre-faith and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Finnish death ‘elves’…

  1. Niko Kivelä says:

    Hello! Greetings from Finland.

    Kalma is a really old synonym (and used only in dictums or such) for death and is a name of a Finnish goddess in old folklore

    Kalma’s people (Kalman people) is in the Finnish belief tradition somewhat ambiguous phenomenon, which usually means a group of burial ground or grave of deceased ghosts. It has been told that church tells the stories of the midnight’s church services , which most commonly occurred on Christmas night . Corpses raised from their graves and hold worship led by a dead priest. Ghosts were often terrible and they were considered as relatives and ancestors of worshipers.

    Finnish Wikipedia can be found from

    • Thanks for the information. I wish I read/spoke Finnish. In Scottish fairy belief, some think that in the early modern period, with the advent of Presbyterianism, that the fairy belief was used as a replacement for, or was conflated with, the idea of purgatory which was no longer acceptable, much like the same theorists think that fairy belief was a survival of ancestor ‘worship’ into the christian era. It is also interesting the Finnish goddess is similar to the Scottish ‘Qweene of Fearrie’. and the ‘Faerie Rade’ is similar to the ‘Wild Hunt’. DRC

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