Fireside Chats: Easter and Impalement
Almost everyone, whether Christian or not, recognizes the name Pontius Pilate. He is the Roman governor who sentenced Jesus Christ to death by crucifixion. Out of all the intimate players in the Christian story, it is Pilate who can most easily be proven, historically, to have existed. (That just means there is physical evidence in addition to what has been written down.) Even so, as with all those involved with the story of Jesus, a good deal of extraneous, legendary traditions arose about him in the centuries following.
We know that Pilate was ruling over Judea from 26-37 A.D., but not what became of him after he was removed from that post. For that we have to depend on legend. One such legend states that Pilate was sentenced to death by the Emperor—by impalement. (Dracula would be proud.) To escape that nasty fate, Pilate commits hara-kiri. His body is then thrown into the river Tiber. The demons possessing Pilate are freed upon this immersion and cause storms, so the body is fished out and taken to the Rhone, where it is again submerged. Again there are demon-fueled storms, so they take Pilate’s body all the way to Switzerland, where today there is a Mount Pilatus. The Roman was said to have been thrown into one of the lakes high in the mountains, and to this day demons cause terrible storms. Legend says that the ghost of Pilate can be seen every Good Friday, rising from the waters to reenact Pilate’s “washing of his hands” as he condemned Jesus.
WAYNE MILLER is the owner and creative director of EVIL CHEEZ PRODUCTIONS, specializing in theatrical performances and haunted attractions. He has written, produced, and directed (and occasionally acted in) over two dozen plays, most of them in the Horror and True Crime genres. He obtained a doctorate in Occult Studies from Miskatonic University and is an active paranormal investigator. Is frequently told he resembles Anton Lavey. And Ming the Merciless.
Denn die totden reiten schnell!