A peculiarly mischievous spirit or hobgoblin of Lancashire and Yorkshire, but also found in other counties. Boggarts can be helpful and sociable with some people, but are mostly mischievous, annoying, and frightening. They play tricks on people, such as pulling off their bedclothes or scratching or pinching them, and these acts are usually accompanied by terrible noises or laughter.

Boggarts inhabit houses, churchyards, or fields, and can inhabit the body of a small animals such as cats and dogs. Many old houses are said to have their resident boggart.

In the past, parents used to keep unruly children in line by threatening to have them thrown into a "boggart-hole." In the North Countries, called nippen or nick.

A blash-boggart is an apparition appearing and disappearing like a flash. The house-boggart and the horse-boggart are industries, yet mischievous imps, a kind of lubber-fiend.

See also bogle.



  • Bonnerjea, Biren. (1920). A Dictionary of Superstitions and Mythology. Thomson Gale.
  • Guiley, Rosemary Ellen. (2007). The Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits. New York: Facts On File, Inc.
  • Wright, J. (1903). The English dialect dictionary. Vols. 1 & 3. London: H. Frowde.