NUNO SA PUNSO: Myth & Beliefs About This Dwarf-Like Creature

NUNO SA PUNSO – Here are some myth and beliefs about this popular dwarf-like creature within the rich history of Filipino folklore.

A magical and mysterious creature known as “Nuno sa Punso,” exists in the Philippine mythology. These tiny beings are considered guardians of the environment, residing in anthills or mounds of earth, often called “punso” or “hillocks.”

The term “Nuno sa Punso” translates to “Old Man of the Mound” in English. These mythical creatures are believed to be supernatural beings with magical powers, and they play a significant role in Filipino folklore.


“Nuno sa Punso” is often described as a small, elderly figure with a long white beard, wearing traditional Filipino clothing like the barong Tagalog. Despite their tiny size, these beings are believed to possess great wisdom and magical abilities.

According to some people, disturbing their dwelling, the punso, can bring misfortune or bad luck. This belief emphasizes the importance of respect to the environment and all its inhabitants.

One of the central beliefs surrounding “Nuno sa Punso” is their role as guardians of nature. It is said that disturbing their dwelling, the punso, can bring misfortune or bad luck. This belief emphasizes the importance of respecting the environment and all its inhabitants.


Filipino people often share stories of encountering these beings in rural areas, and there are various beliefs associated with appeasing or avoiding them. Many of our countrymen refrain from sitting or stepping on anthills, out of respect for these creatures.

Elderlies believe that Nunos have the ability to case curse upon trespassers. Cursed person may suffered from swollen genitals and feet, urinating black liquid, vomiting of blood, stomach pain and many others.

Albularyo, a practitioner of traditional medicine in the Philippines can perform a ritual called “Pagtatawas,” to interpret the signs pointing to the cause of the patient’s illness. The victim’s family will be asked to offer fruits or other food, drink, or a material object to the nuno in order to be healed.

Despite modernization, the belief in Nuno Sa Punso still exists in many regions of the Philippines. Children are instructed not to play outdoors between noon and 3 o’clock and are advised to maintain silence in areas believed to be inhabited by the Nuno.

Phrases like “tabi tabi po” are used to seek permission or give notice before passing through Nuno territories.

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