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Goblins are….Orcs….bankers in Harry Potter world…uh…
Exactly. Goblins are whatever we make them. They started out as a generic term for an evil or mischievous spirit, and became part of European folklore in the 1300s as tormenters of children.
In literature–before Tolkien turned them into Orcs and JK Rowling into gold-obsessed bankers–Charles Dickens wrote “The Goblins Who Stole a Sexton” in Pickwick Papers in 1836, and used them again in The Chimes in 1844. Christina Rossetti wrote a poem, “Goblin Market,” in 1862; George MacDonald wrote The Princess and the Goblin in 1872. MacDonald’s goblins were once human but lived underground so long they turned to, well, Orcs.
More recently Terry Jones and Brian Froud teamed up for The Goblins of Labyrinth in 1986, then goblins fell out of favor till they were resurrected in the Harry Potter series.
I have a stray goblin who shows up in New Orleans in Royal Street. He looks like a cross between an Orc and Willie Nelson and drinks a lot. Hey, why not?