(Image: Perkins 155)
The European giant is described as a humongous creature, from four to twenty times the height of a person (Rose 136-139). Unlike the giants of several other cultures, the European giant is most often portrayed as a menace to the people (Rose 138). It often eats precious livestock, stomps crops, and abducts citizens. European giants are almost always horribly stupid and slow to react to a situation (Rose 136-139, 397).
Since European giants are so idiotic, they can be exploited easily by a cunning adventurer. They could quite simply be an explanation for the disappearance or escape of animals. They could also explain the sudden death of crops or the abduction of people. Simply, giants are a cover for many misfortunes people experience.