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The wulver is a kind of werewolf that is part of the folklore of the Shetland islands off the coast of Scotland.[1]


The wulver kept to itself and was not aggressive if left in peace. Unlike most werewolves the Wulver is not a shapeshifter and is not, nor was it ever, a human being. It appears to be a sort of immortal spirit. Jessie Saxby, in Shetland Traditional Lore writes:[2]

The Wulver was a creature like a man with a wolf's head. He had short brown hair all over him. His home was a cave dug out of the side of a steep knowe, half-way up a hill. He didn't molest folk if folk didn't molest him. He was fond of fishing, and had a small rock in the deep water which is known to this day as the "Wulver's Stane". There he would sit fishing sillaks and piltaks for hour after hour. He was reported to have frequently left a few fish on the window-sill of some poor body.

After researching folklore traditions gathered primarily from Gaelic areas of Scotland,[3] an authority on congenital disorders, Susan Schoon Eberly, has speculated the tale of the wulver may have a basis in a human being with a medical condition; she suggests it may be Hunter syndrome.[4]



  1. ^ Bane (2013), p. 346
  2. ^ Saxby (1932), p. 141
  3. ^ Black (2005), p. liv
  4. ^ Eberly (1988), p. 72


Further reading[edit]

  • Briggs, Katharine, An Encyclopedia of Fairies, Pantheon Books