Oh vampire lore, how I love thee. If you’re new to the site then let me fill you in, I love vampire folklore, I especially love how nearly every country in the world has its own species of vampire. Today’s myth is another one about witch vampires, but this witch it the Albanian shtriga.
The shtriga is a witch that would feed on the life force or blood of people as they slept at night (the myth varies area to area). Once she was finished feeding on her victim she would then transform into an insect and fly into the night. But the shtriga didn’t feed on just anyone, her preferred meal was infants and children. Even now people in Albania still blame the shtriga for many infant deaths.
It is said that those feed on by a shtriga would die shortly after, unless they received the cure that is. This cure was to have the shtriga herself spit into the mouth of the victim. Disgusting, but hell, it’s better than death.
Like with most vampires out there, there are ways to ward them off and keep them from eating your babies. There are two methods one could use to keep the shtriga away.
- Make a cross made of bone and place it at the entrance of a church on Easter Sunday. This will make it so any shtriga inside can’t escape. They can then be captured and killed at the threshold as they try to pass.
- After drinking blood from a victim, the shtriga would usually go off into the woods and regurgitate it (that seems wasteful) and it was believed that soaking a silver coin in that blood, then wrapping it in cloth would and turning it into an amulet would offer permanent protection from any shtriga.
Added Note: If you are a fan of the show Supernatural then you may remember the shtriga from the episode “Something Wicked” where Dean and Sam battle it out with one.