The term “Bodach” is often used in Scottish folklore and is not specific to a single mythical creature. Instead, it generally refers to a malevolent supernatural being or spirit. The nature and characteristics associated with the Bodach can vary depending on regional folklore and individual stories. he Bodach is typically described as a malevolent or sinister presence. It may be associated with bad luck, misfortune, or other negative occurrences.

Illustration of a Bodach, creeping in the dead of night

Physical characteristics

Old Man Appearance: The Bodach may appear as an elderly figure with distinctive features such as a long beard, wrinkled skin, and hunched posture.

Goblin-Like Features: In some variations, the Bodach might be described as having goblin-like features, such as sharp claws, pointy ears, or other characteristics reminiscent of malevolent supernatural beings.

Cloaked or Disguised Form: The Bodach may appear in a cloaked or disguised form, making it difficult to recognize its true nature.


The term “Bodach” has its roots in Scottish Gaelic and simply means “old man” or “old husband.” In the context of folklore, it is used to refer to a malevolent supernatural being or spirit rather than an actual elderly man.

The creature’s origin can be traced to the rich tapestry of Celtic and Gaelic mythology, where various supernatural beings, spirits, and creatures played a role in explaining natural phenomena, mysterious events, or serving as cautionary tales. The Bodach, with its association with mischief, malevolence, and dark presence, fits into the broader tradition of folklore where such entities were invoked to explain and make sense of the unknown.

As with many folklore entities, the stories surrounding the Bodach evolved over time through oral traditions, local variations, and cultural influences. Different regions and communities in Scotland may have developed their own interpretations of the Bodach, resulting in variations in its characteristics, behaviors, and lore.

Bodach, the silent harbinger of doom, emerging from the darkness

powers and abilities

Mischief and Ill Intent: The Bodach is often associated with causing mischief, disturbances, and ill fortune. It may play pranks on individuals, create chaos, or bring about negative events.

Nighttime Haunting: Like many supernatural beings, the Bodach is often linked to nighttime activities. Its presence may be felt more strongly during the dark hours.

Shapeshifting: Some stories suggest that the Bodach possesses shapeshifting abilities, allowing it to change its appearance.

Illusions and Deception: The Bodach may employ illusions or deceptive tactics to confuse and frighten its victims. This can include appearing in disguises or manipulating perceptions to achieve its malevolent goals.

Cultural Variations: Depending on the specific folklore and regional variations, the Bodach may be associated with other powers or abilities. For example, it could be linked to specific natural elements or have a role in explaining certain phenomena.

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