Join FunTrivia for Free: Hourly trivia games, quizzes, community, and more!
Fun Trivia
Ask FunTrivia: Questions and Answers
Answers to 100,000 Fascinating Questions
Welcome to FunTrivia's Question & Answer forum!

Search All Questions

Please cite any factual claims with citation links or references from authoritative sources. Editors continuously recheck submissions and claims.

Archived Questions

Goto Qn #

In what country do people put out a bowl of porridge as a Christmas treat for the barn elf?

Question #8323. Asked by sandy.
Last updated Sep 06 2016.

Answer has 5 votes

Answer has 5 votes.

Dec 05 2000, 9:21 AM
Answer has 8 votes
Currently Best Answer
23 year member
3694 replies avatar

Answer has 8 votes.

Currently voted the best answer.
Scandinavia in general -- A tomte or nisse (brownie) is a mythical creature of Scandinavian folklore, specifically part of a group of creatures called vetter (elf), common in rural areas. There were two varieties of nisse or tomte, one type that resided in the house, and one that resided in the barn. He would take care of the homestead, crops, house, and people while the human inhabitants slept.
Like the brownie, the tomte or nisse needed gifts, but this gift was a bowl of porridge or rice pudding on Christmas night. If he wasn't given his payment, he would leave the farm or house which couldn't survive without his nightly chores, or engage in mischief, such as tying the cows' tails together in the barn, turning objects upside-down, and breaking things.

Denmark -- A Danish Tomten was my choice. On a trip to Denmark I learned that a Tomten is a Danish elf who lives secretly in the barn. If the farmer offers him porridge, the Tomten helps things along on the farm. But if the farmer ignores the little elf, things go mysteriously wrong!

Norway -- Christmas Eve dinner begins with rice porridge which contains one lucky almond. A bowl is also set out for the barn elf so that he will continue to watch over the animals and not turn mischievous


Response last updated by Terry on Sep 06 2016.
Apr 19 2004, 1:33 AM
free email trivia FREE! Get a new mixed Fun Trivia quiz each day in your email. It's a fun way to start your day!

arrow Your Email Address:

Sign in or Create Free User ID to participate in the discussion