The Nisse/Tomte is an echo of ancient ancestral cult.
Nisse may be derived from Norse niðsi, meaning “dear little relative” or from the Germanic water-sprite nixie (like a Buddy). If treated well, they protect the family and animals from evil and misfortune, and may also aid the chores and farm work (again, like Buddy).
The Nisse/Tomte was often imagined as a small, elderly man (size varies from a few inches to about half the height of an adult man), often with a full beard; dressed in the traditional farmer garb, consisting of a pull-over woolen tunic belted at the waist and knee breeches with stockings.
Despite his small size, the Nisse possessed an immense strength.
Buddy too, is small, but can with the proper partners, achieve great things.