Louhi[ˈlouɦi], also known as Loviatar, Louheatar, Lovehetar or Louhiatar, is a queen of the land known as Pohjola (‘Northland’) in the Finnish and Karelian mythologies. She is the adversary of the hero Väinämöinen in the battle for Sampo, the magical artifact built by the blacksmith Ilmarinen. She has numerous beautiful daughters, and the heroes, including Ilmarinen and Lemminkäinen, attempt to win them in various legends. Louhi, however, is known for setting them impossible tasks to perform in order to gain their prize.
Louhi is a powerful witch: her powers include those of shapeshifting, commanding the weather, healing, and of giving birth to the most monstrous of creatures. Sometimes she is credited for being the mother of the Nine Diseases (as Loviatar); however, there is debate on whether Louhi and Loviatar are two different goddesses or whether the names are just regional variants.
Louhi, the 'Whore Mistress of Pohjola’, is depicted as a matriarch, and no presence of a husband is mentioned in most myths about her; instead, she becomes impregnated by the wind or by the sea monster Iku-Turso.