The Ghost Glossary: The Difference Between Ghosts, Ghouls, Goblins, And More

Welcome, ye of the populate, to the ghastly menagerie of skittish spirits and eerie entities. here you ’ ll detect ghosts, ghouls, goblins, and all manner of supernatural terrors .

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What is another word for ghost?

Ghosts are spirits of the dead, much imagined as float or moving about in a dim, immaterial mannequin. The word ghost developed from the Old English gast, which means “ soul, liveliness, life sentence, breath. ” A loss lineage cell having no hemoglobin is besides called a ghost .
Ghosts are common in folklore around the world, and there are many different names for them :

  • spirit: A general synonym for a ghost, spirit can also be used in terms for ghosts that haunt a specific place or that have a specific characteristic. For example, you can have a forest spirit that haunts the woods or a vengeful spirit that’s out for revenge.
  • specter: Sometimes used to refer to an especially scary ghost, the word specter comes from the Latin word spectrum, meaning “appearance.” Specters are spirits that you can see.
  • apparition: A supernatural thing that appears suddenly, like a ghost. An apparition may or may not be the spirit of a person. You could see the apparition of a horse, a ship, or an entire battle scene, for example.
  • wraith: A wraith is a ghostly version of a living person whose appearance is thought to signal their imminent death.
  • phantom, phantasm: A spirit or apparition, a phantom or phantasm is especially prone to appearing and disappearing suddenly.
  • revenant: The spirit of a person that has returned after death. In other words, a revenant is another word for a ghost.
  • shade, shadow: Both shade and shadow are poetic synonyms for ghost. Shade is sometimes specifically used to refer to spirits of the dead in the underworld as imagined in ancient Greek and Roman mythology.
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What is a poltergeist?

A poltergeist is a ghost that makes itself known by making noises, moving things about, or broadly causing mischief around the house—and the people—that it haunts .
The parole poltergeist was first recorded in the 1840s and comes from the german poltergeist, a combination of the german verb polter ( newton ), meaning “ to make randomness, ” and geist, which means “ spirit ” or “ haunt ” and is related to the words haunt, ghastly, and aghast .
many people are familiar with the password poltergeist ascribable to its use as the title of the democratic 1982 horror movie about a house haunted by these noisy spirits. ( “ They ’ ra heeere. ” )
Which of these skittish words would you use to describe your charnel apparitional encounter ?

What is a ghoul, exactly?

In the pantheon of skittish supernatural beings, a graverobber is often specifically defined as a demonic creature that feeds on human flesh, particularly that of children or the dead .
The parole graverobber comes from the Arabic word ghūl, which was the identify used for this terrifying giant of caption. Ghūl comes from the word ġāla, meaning “ to seize, ” in reference to seizing bodies to eat .
In advanced times, the discussion ghoul is often used more generally. In skittish context, it can refer to any baleful creature—ghosts and goblins could both be by and large referred to as ghouls .
It can besides refer to a person who enjoys disturbing or revolting things. The adjective ghoulish can describe such a person or their behavior .

What are gremlins, goblins, and hobgoblins?

The parole elf refers to an invisible creature known for wreaking havoc in machinery, specially airplanes. The terminus is foremost recorded in the late 1920s, and it may be related to the bible goblin, but its beginning is unknown. In democratic culture, the appearance of gremlins varies widely. The 1984 movie Gremlins excellently depicts them as cunning, fuzzy animals that [ spoiler ] turn into hideous, bat-like monsters.

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A goblin is a small, despicable creature known for harassing humans. The password goblin comes from the Middle high German bible kobold, which refers to a arch creature or intent that haunts houses or mines ( the name of the alloy cobalt comes from the same word—from the miners ’ belief that malicious goblins placed it in the silver ore ). In popular culture, goblins are frequently depicted as bantam, cunning minions of evil or wild and dangerous tricksters .
The password goblin is frequently used to refer to specially sinful or arch goblins. The word goblin is another word for a goblin or an extremely low frequency .
The password hobgoblin can besides be used in a general way to be anything that causes fear. The words bugaboo and bugbear can mean the same thing, but bugbear can besides refer to a goblin that eats blue children. Bugbears are sometimes said to appear in the form of a bear, but why bug ? The password bug was once used to refer to an evil spirit or goblin. The password is probable refer to terms like bugaboo and bogeyman .

What is a bogeyman?

A bogeyman is an fanciful malefic creature with supernatural powers that is much said to terrorize or kidnap children. Stories about “ the bogeyman ” are used to scare children, and its appearance is normally entrust undefined, allowing children ’ south resource to conjure up the scariest animal possible .
Bogeyman has many alternate spellings, such as bogyman, bogeyman, and boogieman. It can be pronounced as [ boog -ee-man ], [ boh -gee-man ], or [ boo -gee-man ] .
The bogey in bogeyman is an alternative form of the word bogey, which means “ bugbear ” or “ evil heart. ”
Which of these monsters from folklore and literature give you the most goosebumps ?

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Other words for evil spirits and malevolent creatures

Ghosts are skittish but aren ’ metric ton necessarily always up to no good. For a cosmopolitan term for the kind of ghost that torments or harms the populate, manipulation evil spirit .
The bible demon can be used to refer to an evil liveliness, but it most normally refers to devils and early demonic creatures. The word fiend can besides refer to either evil spirits or demons.

many cultures and mythologies have produced very specific malefic creatures. Beware of these specially :

  • cacodemon: To the ancient Greeks, an evil demon, or a cacodemon, is the opposite of a good spirit or angel (called a eudemon).
  • eidolon: A phantom or apparition. In the Iliad, an eidolon was a shapeshifting spirit that took the appearance of Helen of Troy and, in some versions of the story, may have even caused the Trojan War.
  • banshee: In Irish folklore, a spirit in the form of a wailing woman who appears to or is heard by members of a family as a sign that one of them is about to die. Banshees are especially known for their horrifying scream (the “cry of the banshee”).
  • dybbuk: In Jewish mythology, a dybukk is a ghost of a dead sinner that seeks to possess a living person. According to the stories, a dybbuk can only be removed through a religious exorcism.
  • jinn: In Islamic mythology, a jinn (popularly known as a genie) is a spirit that influences humans to be good or evil. In popular culture, they are often portrayed as super powerful magical creatures who grant wishes (which often turn out much differently than the wisher intended).
  • doppelgänger: A ghostly double or counterpart of a living person. The word doppelgänger comes from a German term literally (and spookily) meaning “double-walker.”
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