A female Mare riding on a sleeping man’s chest.
A mare sneaks upon a sleeping person and riding on their chest. The victim may get nightmares and be infected by various diseases.
The Mare also ride horses during the night, and leave them exhausted, covered in sweat by the morning.
The first known documentation of a Mare is in the Norse book ”Ynglinga saga”
King Vanlandi Sveigðisson of Uppsala lost his life to a nightmare (mara) conjured by the Finnish sorceress Huld or Hulda, hired by the king’s abandoned wife Drífa. The king had broken his promise to return within three years, and after ten years had elapsed the wife engaged the sorceress to either lure the king back to her, or failing that, to assassinate him. Vanlandi had scarcely gone to sleep when he complained that the nightmare “rode him;” when the men held the king’s head the it “trod on his legs” on the point of breaking, and when the retinue then “seized his feet” the creature fatally “pressed down on his head.”
According to the Vatnsdæla saga, Thorkel Silver (Þorkell Silfri) has a dream about riding a red horse that barely touched the ground, which he interpreted as a positive omen, but his wife disagreed, explaining that a mare signified a man’s fetch (fylgja), and that the red color boded bloodiness. This association of the nightmare with fetch is thought to be of late origin, an interpolation in the text dating to circa 1300, with the text exhibiting a “confounding of the words marr and mara.”
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