Lots of cultures worry about the dead coming back into something unsavory, whether it's a zombie or vampire. Here's just some of the methods they adhere to:
Bury the corpse face down.
Bury it at a crossroads.
Place a sickle around its neck.
Burn the body.
Putting coins or stones in the mouth.
Cover the grave with a pile of stones.
A brick wedged in the mouth.
Fill the mouth with garlic.
Sever the head.
I'm just trying to picture a funeral director offering packages to be sure your relative is really dead.
I find this stuff fascinating. I've read that piling stones over a corpse goes back to prehistoric man. It's easy to fob it off as ignorance or superstition, but then again...ReplyDelete
There are many more! I am from Hungary, from the heartland of vampirism ehehe:) One is to scatter rice or grains around the grave because vampires have to count them before they get on to hunt, and they are late before the sunrise. Other is, cut the bod into pieces and arrange it unnaturally, or sever the limbs and turn them upside down, so the toenails are facing downwards. That way, when he is to rise, he will start downwards and bury himself deeper.ReplyDelete
I saw something once about a WWII POW Camp for German soldiers... It seems the Germans were told if they were killed while escaping (for example) that they would be buried face down... and that seemed to be contrary with some kind of religious belief...Delete
Oh, that's some great mythology you shared, Dirgesinger! Particularly the one about burying the dead face down so they will only dig themselves deeper in. I guess they didn't think the vampires were too bright! ;) How cool to be from the birthplace of vampire legends!Delete
Ha! As a former embalmer this would present interesting preparation methods besides the "norm" LOLReplyDelete
Check out the book "Vampires, Burial, and Death". It's amazing how many of the burial/funeral practices and traditions we stil observe today are rooted in vampire lore.ReplyDelete