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Imps (folklore)

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An Imp.

Imps are small mischievous demons or fairies from varied folklore and mythology as well as some folk religions - they are considered tricksters and troublemakers rather than outright malevolent and are often portrayed as small in size, often seen as one of the weakest (and/or lowest-ranking) demons in the infernal hierarchy they are nevertheless a very popular creature with innumerable stories and legends to their name.

Imps are similar to goblins in their fondness for playing practical jokes on people and tormenting mortals for their own amusement, they were also once believed to be the Familiars of witches and devil-worshippers - capable of taking the form of small animals.

Imps are also regularly seen as tempters and a popular image has appeared in fiction of an imp (or tiny devil) sitting on the shoulder of a character and tempting them to do evil, in some superstitious tales imps were one of the many evil spirits believed to tempt people (in the imp's case via whispering into people's ears as they slept).


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