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Pukwudgie

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The Pukwudgie is a magical creature native to North America.[1]

Pukwudgies are short, grey, large-eared creatures that are distantly related to the European goblin. They have been known to both help humans and play tricks on them.

They are famous for having the Ilvermorny House Pukwudgie named in honour of them because of the friendship that existed between Isolt Sayre and the Pukwudgie she named William.

Pukwudgies still work at Ilvermorny today and provide security and maintenance.

History

In 1620, Isolt Sayre saved a Pukwudgie that was about to be eaten by a Hidebehind. She nursed him back to health, and he declared himself bound and indebted to her until he had repaid her help. He followed her around grumbling and showed very little gratitude to her. However, Isolt enjoyed his company and a unique friendship developed between them.[1]

Isolt eventually named him William, as he would not reveal his true name per the tradition of the Pukwudgies. He introduced her to many creatures, such as the Hodag, Snallygaster and Wampus.[1]

One day, William was shocked to find that Isolt had befriended the Horned Serpent at the creek and was even more wary to discover that the Horned Serpent liked Isolt who was able to understand it. She grew to learn not to talk to William about her kinship with it and kept the things they talked about to herself.[1]

While foraging in the woods, a grisly sound made William tell Isolt to say hidden while he found out what had happened. Isolt ignored him and followed him to a scene in which the Hidebehind had killed a witch and wizard and wounded two children.[1]

Isolt and William worked together to kill the Hidebehind but William refused to help Chadwick and Webster as Pukwudgies believe they shouldn't help humankind and it led to argument in which they parted ways.[1]

However, ten years later they reunited when Isolt called for her father as she and her family were about to be killed by Gormlaith Gaunt. The Pukwudgie had thought she was calling for him and he killed Gormlaith with one of the poisonous arrows he owned. It was tipped in Pukwudgie venom which has a terrible reaction with dark magic.[1]

William became famous for his role in the founding of Ilvermorny School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Isolt had told her family stories about William which led to James Steward deciding to name the house Pukwudgie for him.[1]

James shaked William's hand when he first met him and told him what he had done which flattered William. He moved his family into the house the next day and they became the first Pukwudgies to live in and serve Ilvermorny. To this day Pukwudgies are paid to provide security and maintenance services at the school.[1]

However, like William, they complain about being there and often say they have no wish to remain there but they still appear every year to work. William may still live there, as an old Pukwudgie there by the same name refuses to let anyone polish the marble statue of Isolt at the entrance. He places mayflowers at the statue every year on the anniversary of her death.[1]

Physical appearance

Pukwudgie ClearBG 2

The Pukwudgie as seen on the Ilvermorny crest

Pukwudgies are known to have grey skin and grow to be about 2 to 3 feet tall. They also have long ears, notably similar to house elves. They are distantly related to European goblins.

Personality and traits

Pukwudgies are considered fierce and independent. They enjoy hunting and playing tricks on humans. They are exceptionally dangerous and secretive creatures who have a tradition that expects them not to not reveal their true names to outsiders.[1]

As seen with William, they consider themselves indebted to the one who saves them, however much they dislike it, and declare themselves bound to them until they have repaid the favour. William was particulary upset about it as it is against the beliefs of the Pukwudgie to assist humankind.[1]

The Pukwudgie can also be very grumpy and complain about many things they have to do even if they actually want to do it. For example, the ones that work at Ilvermorny often say they have no wish to be there but they happily turn up every year to work there.[1]

They are very serious about their traditions which led to a tantrum by William when Isolt asked him to break tradition and help humankind. He considered Isolt an exception as she saved him but refused to help the wounded Webster and Chadwick and preferred to ignore them. Pukwudgies once hated humans but have since mellowed.[1]

They can think it is humiliating if the one they are indebted to appears foolish and have no problem with showing great ingratitude as they stay with them.[1]

They can also be very wary and distrusting of certain things such as the Horned Serpent. However, they are very intelligent as William possessed great knowledge of the land and the creatures that lived there, are able to create their own weapons and possess their own magic. The Pukwudgie can also be very loyal and protective of the things they love.[1]

It is not known how long Pukwudgies can live for, but some at Ilvermorny claim William still worked at Ilvermorny when he would be over three hundred years old.[1]

Eytmology

Pukwudgie means 'person of the wilderness' in Native American languages.[2]

Known Pukwudgies

  • William - a Pukwudgie whom Isolt Sayre rescued from a Hidebehind and nursed back to health. The two eventually became friend[1]. He was named after Isolt's murdered father.

Behind the scenes

  • The Pukwudgie is a creature that appears in the folklore of various indigenous peoples of North America, notably the Wampanoag.[3][4] It is typically described as two-to-three-feet tall and human-shaped, but with a larger nose, ears, and fingers and smooth, grey skin that sometimes glows.[3] Its magical abilities include disappearing and reappearing, partial or complete transformation into a porcupine or cougar, and creating fire.[3]
  • The Pukwudgie taboo against revealing ones personal names could possibly derive from the belief that knowing ones name enables another to curse a person.

Appearances

See also

Notes and references

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