Vampire folklore in Europe

2019-03-20 06:10:05

Vampires are ghoulish miscreants and emerge throughout folklore. Here are a few tales of vampires.


The Buckinghamshire Vampire

In 1196 a vampire traversed the Buckinghamshire area of England. The tale is chronicled in Historia Rerum Anglicarum. The writer of the myth is a friar named William of Newburgh. A vampire, which was the apparition of a freshly deceased man, assaulted his prey at nightfall. He was a customary vampire; one who slept each day in a grave at the local burial ground. When the sun set the vampire would rise and attack his widow while she was asleep. It is common in vampire tales for vampires to attack their past family members.

Even though he didn’t slay his widow, each evening he returned to her bed chamber and assailed and bullied her. The widow sought out family members to stay with her and help keep her awake after dark. The vampire then started attacking the other family members in the house. Before long, the complete hamlet was terrified of going to sleep.
The vampire’s burial grave was exhumed by the local villagers. The corpse hadn’t decayed and was in almost fresh condition. The townspeople reburied the corpse. On the chest of the body they placed a holy scapula. The vampire never rose from the grave from that day forward.
The Folktale of the Vampire of Berwick
In a second story of William of Newburgh’s Historia Rerum Anglicarum, an affluent man who lived in the hamlet of Berwick grew sick and died of plague near the border of Scotland and England. After the man's death he was seen wandering the streets each night. The dogs of the village would bark deep into the night while the vampire was meandering. The villagers, who were afraid that plague might spread through the town due to the vampire’s presence, exhumed the body, dismembered it, and set it on fire. The vampire was never seen roving the village after sunset after that. However, plague still infected the village and it was attributed to the idle spiritual presence of the vampire.
The Vampire Folktale of Arnold Paole
In this legendary Austrian folktale, a Serbian brigand named Arnold was the victim of a vampire attack during the course of a night time walk in a cemetery. Arnold located the vampire’s grave and beheaded the monster with a shovel. The vampire curse was a legend that made the killer of a vampire turn into a vampire themselves. In an attempt to stop the curse, Arnold ate some of the dirt around the grave. Arnold would live an average life for several more years.
Quite a while later Arnold died from a fall in which he broke his neck. Subsequent to his funeral his apparition was discovered sneaking around the village late in the evening. Several villagers were discovered dead after dawn, all drained of blood. The bald speculation was that Arnold had fallen prey to the vampire curse. The Austrian army was commanded to look into the situation. They dug up the body and were appalled by what they discovered. The corpse had not decayed and there was sparkling blood seeping from the mouth, nose, and eyes. The fingernails had grown and new skin had grown also.
The townspeople pounded a stake through the heart of the corpse. The remains began bleeding from the injury and the carcass began groaning in distress. The vampire was never seen again.