Vampire Skeletons Unearthed, Still Dead
June 6, 2012

Vampire Skeletons Unearthed, Still Dead

Michael Harper for

What do you do when a suspected Vampire is living in your neighborhood? You and a hoard of your closest friends mercilessly hunt him down and drive long iron rods through his chest, ensuring he can´t come back from the dead as a Vampire Zombie, right? A Vampire Zombie with a grudge is way worse than any other kind Zombie, for sure.

This instinct that drives us to go looking for the first spear-like object we can when faced with Vampire troubles may be instinctual, as archaeologists yesterday found 2 "Vampire" skeletons in Bulgaria. The iron rods protruding from their chest cavities were calling card enough; these must´ve been Vampires.

You´ll be pleased to know the iron rods performed their duties as expected, with no signs of struggle, escape or bat wings.

Bulgaria´s national history museum chief Bozhidar Dimitrov told the Daily Mail, “These two skeletons stabbed with rods illustrate a practice which was common in some Bulgarian villages up until the first decade of the 20th century.”

According to those fine folks in Bulgaria nearly 800 years ago, if a person was “bad,” (deadbeats, drunkards, suspected felons, etc) they were suspected to be Vampires who have yet to take final shape. So, by beating them to the punch and driving a stake in their chest, the townspeople could rest easy, knowing they wouldn´t have a member of the undead making trouble. After all, it´s awfully tough to loot, pillage and cause general midnight mayhem when you´re pinned down to your casket.

The townspeople of Bulgaria may have been a nervous set. According to Mr. Dimitrov, more than 100 iron-clad corpses have been discovered throughout the town in recent years.

“I do not know why an ordinary discovery like that became so popular. Perhaps because of the mysteriousness of the word “vampire".”

To be fair, Mr. Dimitrov, these mythical beings have been making a mint since they´ve become ever so popular among the teen-girl demographic. Digging up a real-live Vampire could have huge investment potential.

Dimitrov also said, "The curious thing is that there are no women among them. They were not afraid of witches.”

Witches, as it´s been famously documented in works of film, can be kept from tormenting the people with the threat of being doused in water, thus the easy-going attitude of the townspeople towards this group.

Don´t paint Vampires as misogynists just yet. Apparently an equal opportunity group, similar female skeletons have been found – complete with iron stake – by Italian researchers in Venice. This particular Vampiress also had the misfortune of having a brick shoved in her mouth to prevent her from feeding on the flesh of those who fell prey to the plague.

These researchers say such Vampires were believed to be the cause of the Black Death Plague when it shook the Venice area all those years ago.

The Venetian Vampiress was found in a mass grave in Lazzaretto Nuovo, dating back to 1576. The grave was nearly 2 miles away from Venice proper and acted as a sanatorium for those suffering from the Black Death Plague.

These new Bulgarian Vampire skeletons, in addition to the Venice Vampiress, help to complete the myth of how such characters were born. Though these creatures live on in the hearts of young girls everywhere, it´s likely we won´t be seeing any more real Vampires for a long time, and we have the strong and sturdy people of Bulgaria and Venice to thank.