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arnold
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The Legendary Arnold Paole

arnoldWhat? Never heard the name before? Shame, since he is one of the most famous vampires in history, his story got a lot of press coverage back in the 1700’s and is still renowned even now.

The case of Arnold Paole took place in 1727-1728 in the Serbian village Meduegna. Arnold Paole was a soldier in the Austrian army that had come home from war in the spring of 1727.  But while on tour with the army something happened while he was stationed in Greece, he was attacked by a vampire. That was what he said at least, he then said he killed the vampire but not after the beast bit him.

Paole returned home feeling cursed but he went on living his life anyway. He ended up working on a farm and one day he suffered a severe fall from a hay-wagon, cracking his noggin open. Paole lingered for a few days but finally succumbed and died. A short time after his burial, strange reports began to circulate around town that Paole had been seen in several locations near by. Remember how I said when he was alive he told people he had been attacked by a vampire? Well that mixed with vampire fears of the times caused a hell of a lot of panic in the village of Meduegna.  The people of the village called on their leaders to look into this possible vampire case.

Forty days after Arnold Paole was buried his grave was opened. Officers were summoned from Belgrade to watch over this exhumation and what they found was that the corpse was extremely fresh, the body had moved to one side of the grave and it had blood trickling from its mouth. There was no explanation for this at the time and the corpse was declared a vampire on the spot. Arnold Paole’s body was then staked and according to legend, it screamed and gushed out mass amounts of blood (again I think of True Blood stakings). Then the head was chopped off and the entire body was burned. That was the end to that vampire.

Yes, Arnold Paole was a real person and this is a real event that happened. But was he a real vampire or was this more superstitious nonsense caused by ignorance? That answer is entirely up to you.

– Moonlight

Moonlight (aka Amanda) loves to write about, read about and learn about everything pertaining to vampires. You will most likely find her huddled over a book of vampire folklore with coffee in hand. Touch her coffee and she may bite you (and not in the fun way).
Arnold PaolehistoryMeduegnaparanoiareal vampirevampirevampire historyvampire legend

Moonlight • September 6, 2009


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  • Christine

    I knew this story, I read it first time as a kid – really interesting! But I think it was rumours, superstition and the fact that people did not understand decaying process which caused it all….

    • John Ruechel

      A few things about your theory…
      At day forty, as the story tells, the person would be at the second stage, Putrefaction.
      During this stage, since the heart stopped beating, the body temp. would fall, causing all blood to flow to the lower regions of the body. As a result, Skin would turn a sickly grayish colour, and would tear off with ease. The story clearly states that the corpse looked fresh, not infested with maggots and the such that usually come around day 20.
      Also, with the screaming, think of a balloon. If you drive a stake in it, it will make a short, loud pop, not long screaming.
      Also, the stake would cover most of the hole if you DID stake a dead body, giving very little gas to escape.
      Food for thought…
      Source: Personal Research

  • Tomalee

    Arnold Paole: By the way I just got bit by a vampire. But don’t worry! I killed it!
    Fellow Soldier: Mm’kay. Good job then!
    [both soldiers high-five eachother and go about their business]

  • Chelsey

    wow vamps huh sounds like a bunch of stories and lies but the people will believe what the people want to believe

  • Do you know any “serious” books about this case? I’m getting my PhD on vampire literature and really need something I can read about these “real” vampires from the XVIII century.

  • Artemis

    blood dripping from the mouth is caused by internal decomposition and the “screams” were probably due to internal gas build up from stomach acids digesting the inside of the body