The Nisse is known as the Christmas gnome and these are Danish. This is a figure that originates from Scandinavian folklore with Finland, Norway and Sweden all having their own version of him such as the Tomten. Before Danish people had their own version of Santa Claus, they had either nisserfar, nisserkongen, or julenisse which translate to words such as Gnome Father, Gnome King and Christmas Gnome.
What are Danish Christmas Gnomes Called?
The Danish Santa Claus has been through a lot since his inception in the 16th century. He started out as just like any other julenisse, but after American culture took over and made some changes to him that are still seen today- he became known as “julemanden.” The elves also came about from this time period when they were converted into being nice little helpers for all those presents under everyone’s tree at Christmas time!
The julenisse tradition continues to this day and is still important during the December holiday season. Children will bring home a different and will have homework related to it so that they learn about this long tradition. Also, gnomes are still a big part of Christmas decorations and you will find them in all of the big and independent stores. They are like reindeers and elves are a big part of American and UK Christmas decorations, for example.
What is the Difference between Nisse and Tomte?
Tomtes are small men that live on homesteads and tend to be older than kids, whilst being size of a child. They have long lives where they enjoy helping out around their own property or taking care other people’s items when needed. Nisse comes from the name Nils which is the Scandinavian version of Nicholas. In Norway, the Nisse is a household spirit and their job is to take care of the house and land to protect it from evil.
Are Gnomes and Tomte the Same?
Gnomes and Tomte are used to describe the same thing. Depending on where you go in Scandinavia, they will have different names to describe gnomes and stories which describe where they originate from.