Deity of the Day – Holda
Also known as Fraw Holt, Holda became virtually synonymous with Abonde, Diana, and Perchta. Originally, Holda had been a Germanic goddess of vegetation and fertility, much like Perchta. Holda was also the goddess of spinning and weaving.
She, like her other manifestations, was the leader of the “Furious Horde” or “Wild Hunt” (Wütischend Heer, Wilde Jagd, Mesnie Sauvage)–“namely of the ranks of those who had died prematurely and passed through village streets at night, unrelenting and terrible, while the inhabitants barricaded their doors for protection.”
Holda had two forms, that of a beautiful girl dressed all in white, and that of a hideous crone with fangs, a hooked nose, and long, tangled grey hair. In the latter form, she looked just like the stereotypical image of a witch or the evil stepmother of fairy tales. As the White Lady, she was a fertility goddess who granted prosperity to home, family, and field. As the Hag, she offered those who ignored or insulted her death, illness, and misfortune. In this form, she was responsible for fog and snow.