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A hobgoblin, sprite, or spectre chiefly known in Gaelic Scotland but also in Ireland, North America, and Australia. The bòcan could be a shape-shifter and a trickster; he was usually dangerous but sometimes helpful. Often a bòcan would attach itself to a family, such as the Coluinn (or Colann) gun Cheann [ScG, headless body] of the MacDonalds of Morar, west Highlands (until 1974, Inverness-shire). See also ATHACH.

Subjects: Religion.

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