Vampire Burial—Or Is It?
Our friends over at VAMPED bring us this report—actually a report on a report—of yet another “vampire burial” discovered in a graveyard in Transylvania, which as we all know is a part of modern Romania. Anthony Hogg questions whether the labeling of this skeleton as one of the Undead is accurate. He goes further, taking issue with the tendency—and sometimes, by appearance, it is a knee-jerk tendency—to label any “deviant burial” (his phrase) as a vampire burial. In this sense “deviant” just means “uncommon” or “unusual.” Since this one was in Transylvania and it was unusual, it MUST be a vampire burial, mustn’t it? Not necessarily.
Also, we should point out that none of us believe that any of these such graves are the (supposed-to-be) final resting places of REAL vampires. What we mean is, the people who interred the dead were convinced that the corpse would return as a vampire, or were afraid that it would, so they took steps to insure this didn’t happen. Like staking the corpse into the grave. This skeleton in question, however, wasn’t staked. No brick or stone was placed in its mouth. It was buried with some gold coins and brass buttons. What’s vampiric about that? Even the photograph originally circulated as representing the skeleton in question is a recreation. (It’s the same photograph I’m posting with this article.) The only thing really odd about the burial is the positioning of the body in the grave; it was interred “almost upside down, rolled onto [its] side and tilting downwards”, but this, as Hogg points out, could easily have been the result of accident. It need not denote a fear of vampires.
REAL vampire graves are empty, anyway.