I am a little bit confused by the way the terms
jotun (or jötunn),
troll seem to overlap in Norse mythology.
I don't understand if they refer to a single race or multiple (or even variations within the race).
It adds to my confusion that some of the terms seem to refer to strikingly similar beings, but that some of these creatures are inconsistently depicted. The same beings can be portrayed both as both hideous or beautiful (I understand how good or evil characters could vary in appearance, but the physical appearance seems inconsistent for the whole "race").
Another example: the word "giant" would make you think that beings of this race were of a greater size (greater than average, being this "greater than human size" or "greater than god/Æsir/Vanir size"), but this doesn't seem to be a problem sometimes in order to interact (intermarrying, procreating, etc.) with other beings. That makes me think that the all those names depict different creatures, and not just one race, still, as pointed above, there doesn't seem to be consistency for the traits of each of these races..
Could someone clarify if these are different classes of beings, the same class with different names, or clarify what they were an "embodiment" of (like, giant or troll is another way of depict a race as "evil")?