Trini Folklore: Loup Garou

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Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Loup Garou, Lugahu (n): In folklore, a human who takes the form of an animal, generally, at night; French Loup Garou ‘werewolf’.

Loup Garou and other Trini folklore such as Papa Bois are an oral tradition meant to pass on the next generation’s stories. Other Trini phrases in the vernacular are Kote-si Kote-la, Light Candle, Sprawl Off, Jhorts, Sancoche, Kaka-Nay, Rum Jumbie.

The legend says that when a person comes into contact with a loup garou and sheds the beast’s blood, the lugahu will then change to its human form and reveal its secret. The victim then becomes a lugahu for one hundred and one days. If the victim speaks of the encounter to anyone, they become a lugahu themselves. But if they remain quiet about it, they will return to their human form and continue their lives. In the legends, the loup garou is said to be someone the victim knows, such as a jealous former lover.

The Legend of Lagahoo


The legend of the loup garou was often used to scare children when misbehaving (ex: “make your bed or the loup garou is gonna get ya’!” ).

What makes them different from the common werewolf is that they don’t change with the moon’s cycles and have complete change over their actions. So, what makes these creatures so dangerous and terrifying is that while in their wolf form, they are completely aware and as intelligent as they are in their human form. With their enhanced abilities and senses, it makes them difficult to destroy. These are magnificent, intelligent and blessed creatures (in some tales), but beware.

Leave us a comment below of Trini phrases or Trini Folklore you have heard, such as Mama D’Leau, Maharajin, La Jabless and Douen.

Source: Dictionary of the English/Creole of Trinidad & Tobago by Lise Winer

Featured Image by KongQueror.

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