Wandering spirits, found in French folklore, who attach themselves to households both to help and to plague the residents. Goblins usually live in grottoes, but frequently are attracted to homes having beautiful children and lots of wine. Their behavior when moving in is performing household chores at night and disciplining the children by giving them gifts when they are good and punishing them when they are naughty. These goblins can be unpredictable though, they can display a mischievous nature, instead of doing chores during the night they sometimes keep everyone awake by banging pots and pans, knocking on walls and doors and snatching bedclothes off of people. Goblins who become worrisome can be gotten rid of by spilling flaxseed on the floor. They grow tired of cleaning it up each night.
These spirits are known be different names in various countries. They are brownies in England and Scotland, kobalds in Germany, and domoviks in Russia (see childhood of Helena P, Blavatsky). They are associated with Samhain (see Sabbats) and supposedly roam the night when the veil is the thinnest between the worlds of the living and the dead. A.G.H.