Goblins originated in France and spread rapidly all over Europe. They have no homes and usually live in mossy clefts in rocks and roots of ancient trees, although they never stay very long in the same place. The name 'hobgoblin' is thought to be an abbreviation of 'Robin Goblin', the name Druids gave to the first goblins when they entered Britain.
Goblins are a different, more grotesque variety of gnomes. They are known to be playful, but at other time they are evil and their tricks could seriously harm people. A goblin smile curdles the blood and a laugh sours the milk and causes fruit to fall from the trees. They pester humans in a number of ways, such as hiding small objects, tipping over pails of milk and altering signposts.