The Nuberu or Nubeiro is a character of Asturian, Cantabrian or Galician mythology. He is known by the two names respectively depending on the mythology. According to Asturian mythology, the Nuberu - literally "The Cloud Master" (also known in Western Asturias as Reñubeiru or Xuan Cabritu), is the Asturian divinity of clouds and storms.

In some tellings he is an individual, in other the Nuberu are a species of dwarf-like beings.[1] Sometimes it is represented as a man with a thick beard, who wears goat leathers and a big hat.[2] He can be terribly cruel with people, damaging fields and pastures, although he can be also be very kind with those who had helped him before. The myth tell us that he lives in the city of Orito, in Egypt. Folklorists think that Nuberu is an Asturian remnant of the ancient god Taranis, who also ruled over the skies and was worshipped in Asturias until the Middle Ages.[2]

Asturian Tradition

A long time ago the Nuberu came to Asturias riding a cloud, but he was very unlucky and fell to the ground: then he asked for shelter but nobody wanted to help him until, late at night, a peasant took pity on him. In appreciation for his help, Nuberu irrigated his fields, and gave him good harvests, and has continued to provide rain to the people of the region.[2] The story tells that some years later this peasant had to make a long journey to Egypt, and when he arrived in that land he heard that his wife was about to marry another man, thinking that her husband, after so many years of absence, already had died. The peasant then asked Nuberu for help and together they travel back to Asturias riding the clouds and they arrive in time to prevent the wedding. In Asturian villages it is common to ring the bells in order to exorcise Nuberu.

The Nuberu controls the weather at will and amuses himself triggering storms and gales, striking animals with streaks of lightning and ruining the harvests of men with hail. He will not hesitate to use lightning as a weapon if he is attacked or bothered. Among the people of Cantabria and Asturias he is feared for the damage he causes in villages. Nights of rainfall and storms are attributed to him. For this reason during the dark hours locals light up candles and ring bells to scare him away. Fishermen fear the Nuberu because they blame him for the strong northwestern winds of the Cantabrian Sea, which forces them to return hurriedly to port, where worried people await them.

Nuberu images

In the mists
With a big hat
In the mountain


  1. Theresa Bane (4 September 2013). Encyclopedia of Fairies in World Folklore and Mythology. McFarland. pp. 252–. ISBN 978-1-4766-1242-3.
  2. 1 2 3 Michael Kerrigan (3 March 2016). Celtic Legends: Heroes and Warriors, Myths and Monsters. Amber Books Ltd. pp. 283–. ISBN 978-1-78274-339-2.
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