It’s a nightmare come true: A Bulgarian vampire who was nailed to his final resting place by a metal spike was discovered during a dig at a spooky cemetery.
After a skeleton that was discovered in the southern town of Sozopol, the ancient skeleton, which has been identified as a 35 to 40-year-old guy, is the only one to ever have a spike pushed near its heart in this manner.
According to legend, the man—whom his medieval contemporaries believed to be a vampire—was pinned to his grave with a ploughshare, the metal end of a plough, to stop him from rising at midnight and terrorizing the living.
The discovery was made at the Perperikon site, in the east of the country, during a dig led by the ‘Bulgarian Indiana Jones’ Professor Nikolai Ovcharov.
A group heading by Professor Ovcharov unearthed another 700-year-old skeleton of a man pinned down in his earth in a church in the Black Sea town of Sozopol.
The skeleton, which gained notoriety as the “Sozopol vampire,” was killed by having his fangs extracted and having his breast perforated with a ploughshare.
According to Professor Ovcharov, the most recent discovery is the “twin of the Sozopol vampire” and may provide insight into how Christians in the medieval centuries kept pagan vampire beliefs.
The body has been dated to the 13th and 14th centuries by coins discovered with it.
This was just the second instance where a ploughshare was used close to the heart, according to Professor Ovcharov, who claimed to have discovered skeletons “nailed to the ground with iron staples pushed into the limbs.”
The ploughshare is buried into a shattered shoulder bone and weights almost 2 pounds (0.9 kg), the man claimed.
The collarbone has literally “popped out,” as is evident.
This is the most recent in a string of discoveries made throughout western and central Europe that provide fresh insight into how seriously humans formerly regarded the threat posed by vampires.
According to Pagan belief, people who were considered bad during their lifetimes might turn into vampires after death unless stabbed in the chest with an iron or wooden rod before being buried.
These ‘vampires’ were often, intellectuals, aristocrats and clerics.
The odd thing about them is that there are no women there. Bozhidar Dimitrov, director of Bulgaria’s national history museum, claimed that they had no fear of witches.
The numerous epidemics that plagued Europe between 1300 and 1700 contributed to the spread of the vampire myth.
When revisiting mass graves after a plague, gravediggers occasionally discovered bodies that had been gassed out, had hair that was still growing, and had blood flowing from their mouths.
As a result of the shrouds’ frequent breakdown by oral germs, which exposed the corpse’s teeth, vampires came to be known as “shroud-eaters.”
According to medieval medical and religious texts, the ‘undead’ were believed to spread pestilence in order to suck the remaining life from corpses until they acquired the strength to return to the streets again.
‘In my opinion it’s not about criminals or bad people,’ said Professor Ovcharov.
‘Rather, these are precautionary measures that prevent the soul from being taken by the forces of evil in the 40 day period after death.’
Over 100 buried people whose corpses were stabbed to prevent them from becoming vampires have been discovered across Bulgaria over the years.