In Danish folklore, a helhest (Danish "Hel horse") is a three-legged horse associated with Hel. The horse figures into a number Danish phrases as recent as the 19th century, such as "han går som en helhest" ("he walks like a hel-horse") for a male who "blunders in noisily," and the helhest is sometimes described as going "around the churchyard on his three legs, he fetches Death." In Schleswig, a phrase is recorded that, in time of plague, "die (corrected by Grimm from der) Hel rides about on a three-legged horse, destroying men." Jacob Grimm theorizes that the helhest was originally the steed of the goddess Hel.
- ↑ Grimm (1883:844).
- Grimm, Jacob (James Steven Stallybrass Trans.) (1883). Teutonic Mythology: Translated from the Fourth Edition with Notes and Appendix by James Stallybrass. Volume II. London: George Bell and Sons.