The Dwarf

Does not appear in rural folklore, only in pre-Christian norse mythology. In Germany dwarfs have more or less the same role as the Scandinavian Troll.

This is the first image we know of which depicts a dwarf/gnome (lower left corner). Artist: Olaus Magnus (1555)

Dwarfs are a subterranean, often deformed people who live in caves and gorges. They have their own king. They are very good smiths forging strong weapon from metal. They can make themselves invisible, are often hostile to Gods and humans, but can, like trolls, do good deeds in return for humans' kindness.

First an illustration and detail from Louis Moe's great visual epic Ragnarok (1928):

Search The Troll Blog