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Barraguetes in Santa Eulalia, Ibiza

 

 

These freaky-looking dudes have pride of place, perched as they are at the edge of the water feature in Santa Eulalia’s main square.

In case you are wondering, they are “Barruguetes” which are a little-known entity these days. However, in the past, they ranked very highly in Ibiza folklore.

The legend goes like this…

The Barruguet was a mischievous, unkempt and disruptive little imp which, whilst considered a nuisance, was ultimately harmless. He was almost always invisible, but on the odd rare glimpse, he was small in stature, had a long head and wore a pointy hat. He also had the ability to shape-shift and to assume the form of any animal…although he favoured that of a goat.

His main love was to take up residence in an Ibiza home and wreak havoc. Characteristically, he would hide kitchen utensils, throw ash into the cooking pots, tickle children, hide things and move furniture around. His signature prank was hiding in wells and hanging onto the buckets of water so that they could not be drawn up…and considering the strength of a Barruguet was greater than that of several men, he was pretty good at this!

According to tradition, if the householders left this naughty little fellow a piece of cheese and a crust of bread, he would stop his teasing and start to behave himself.

Most of the stories told about the Barruguet in Ibiza have been transmitted orally over the years and, of course, to the younger, modern generation, these are now seen as nothing more than quirky fairy-tales.

But are they?

According to the old folk of Ibiza, just because the young ‘uns have been taught not to believe in him or see him doesn’t mean he doesn’t exist. Indeed, when things go wrong, it is still commonplace for the Ibicencos to automatically blame the Barruguet.

And who wouldn’t? He’s clearly a very naughty boy!!!

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