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Most of the time, the pranks were harmless fun, but some could be upsetting and harmful, such as switching babies or leading travellers astray in places with which they were not familiar.
Though imps are often thought of as being immortal, many cultures believed that they could be damaged or harmed by certain weapons and enchantments, or be kept out of people's homes by the use of wards.
This was the object of the 1891 story "The Bottle Imp" by Robert Louis Stevenson, which told of an imp contained in a bottle that would grant the owner their every wish, the catch being that the owner's soul would be sent to Hell if he or she did not sell the bottle to a new owner before dying.
By all accounts, Imps are small, bony, unattractive creatures.They may take a corporeal form when summoned from this object, or they may lose their corporeal form altogether and exist only as a spirit in the object. Switching babies in a cradle or leading someone astray in the wilderness is child’s play for them.Still, they don’t design elaborate, malicious schemes by themselves.Being associated with Hell and fire, imps take a particular pleasure from playing with temperatures.
To this end, it came to be believed that imps were the familiar spirit servants of witches and warlocks, where the little demons served as spies and informants.The Imp does have a knack for shapeshifting, and many are good at conjuring up fire as well.They make excellent spies, as they can sneak along quietly and disguise themselves or disappear when necessary.Their faces are like masks of thin stone, which are frequently twisted into a smirk or a grimace.