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Eccentricities, true crime, macabre, lore

Category: Myths, Legends, Folklore (Page 2 of 3)

Little Bastard

One of the challenges I had to face when I started “Hiccups” was the debunking of many of my beliefs. See, when I have an idea about an article, I start researching, and this search might last a whole week or more. Through this process I often come across validated information that challenges, or even worse, shatters things I considered facts. I’m actually happy for this. The more order I can bring to this chaos of uncontrolled information, the better! This is one of those stories.

The inspiration for this story came after watching an old “Supernatural” episode – it’s my guilty pleasure, don’t judge! Somewhere in season 5, they deal with the supposedly cursed car of James Dean, “Little Bastard”. Raising my eyebrow, I said to myself, “yeah, I know about this curse, let the search for my new article begin”. Here’s when things turned. *sound of rewinding videotape *

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Friday the 13th

*creepy organ music intro * Boo, today it’s Friday the 13th and I bet that those of you who are a tad superstitious have already prepared your lucky charms and what not. The question is though, how and where did it all begin?

Before I write anything here, I always conduct a huge research on the topic, and I make sure that all the information provided is checked and double checked. I was certain I knew why this day has been associated with bad luck, but while researching I came across many articles by historians who debunked what I thought I knew. Damn, that was a tough one… Since apparently there’s no historically proven origin of this superstition, I have decided to stick to the story I knew, which is a strong candidate anyway, and to be honest, an awesome story! I just need to make clear that it might not be the answer to the question.

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Tuesday the 13th

Today it is Tuesday the 13th, and although this means nothing to most of you, the Greeks, or at least the superstitious ones, are keeping an extra eye out today. Nope, Friday the 13th means nothing to us. It’s Tuesday that sends shivers down our spines.

Of course, there’s an interesting story of how this came to be, there always is. There is also a very interesting story for Friday the 13th, but I’m saving that for the right day. So…

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Saint Walburga

Now to the Brocken the witches hie,
The stubble is yellow, the corn is green;
Thither the gathering legions fly,
And sitting aloft is Sir Uriaii seen:
O’er stick and o’er stone they go whirling along,
Witches and he-goats, a motley throng.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe “Faust”

Oh yes, friends of the occult… tonight’s the night, where the witches gather in Brocken for their feast. Tonight is the night where the veil between the spiritual realm and our world is at its thinnest. Tonight is Walpurgisnacht, or Walpurgis Night.

The simplest research on the topic will tell you all about Saint Walburga, and how she helped spreading the word of Jesus in the pagan Saxon population, and although this indeed happened, the truth of this celebration lies way before the Christian times, as it is almost always the case.

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Titanic or Olympic?

These days mark the anniversary of the biggest naval disaster of the last century, and yes, I’m talking about the sinking of the Titanic. Well, I don’t know if it was the biggest, and considering that two World Wars followed it, chances are it wasn’t. Still, it was a disaster that had an enormous social impact. It was only logical, that something of this magnitude, would inspire legends, legacies, and of course conspiracy theories.

There are so many interesting stories out there that it is hard to focus on only one. One I really loved was the story of the psychic William Thomas Stead, who predicted the sinking of a huge vessel, that would hit an iceberg, yet he boarded the Titanic and sank with it. I guess prophesying the name of said vessel was beyond his psychic abilities, unless the conspiracy theory I will analyze for you, is indeed true…

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St. Basil

Hmm, I bet you are all getting ready for tonight, right?
That sounded a bit ominous, but do not worry, there are no scary stories today.
Since I shared with you a piece of Greek folklore on Christmas, I thought I’d better complete this. So, with no further delay, here are the Greek New Year’s eve traditions!

First interesting fact. There is no Santa Claus in Greece.
Wait… what about Christmas presents you might ask. There is none, is the right answer! Greeks exchange gifts on New Year’s eve. And who brings those? Introducing *drum roll * Basil of Caesarea a.k.a Saint Basil the Great!

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Kalikantzari (excuse me?)

HO HO HO and happy holidays to you all!

I thought I’d give you a story today, a story straight out of Greek Christmas folklore! Put some candy on a plate, and leave it outside, you will need to feed some guests tonight.

Greece is a land filled with tales, whose origins are lost in time. One of these is the story of the -brace yourselves- Kalikantzari. Not that bad, try it slowly and repeat after me Ka – li- kan-tza-ri. These are demonic creatures, which, according to the area of the country you are in, live either in Hades (that’s the underworld people, not a God, perhaps I should write an article on the topic), or in the center of the Earth.

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Giuseppe Tartini

Today I thought about writing something a bit more folkloric, and in fact, the possible origins behind a common urban legend theme. Hold your tea cup tight, and let’s talk about music and the Devil.

I guess most of you are familiar with the common theme of the Devil playing the fiddle, or with the infamous “deals” between musicians and daemons, where talent and fame is exchanged with lost souls and hellish torment.

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Spring Heeled Jack

Boing!

For people like me, London of the Victorian era is and will always be an endless pool of stories. I think the reasons behind this are part of a huge sociological study and we don’t have space for it- plus it could be awfully boring, so, let’s talk about one of the most notorious legends of this time, the Steel-heeled Jack!

I’ll do my best to stick to the facts here, as I always do, which in this case is a difficult task. There is a vast amount of information regarding Jack, far too many theories, and lots of not-so-trustworthy reports from the era.

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Sagittarius

So, I was talking on the phone with a dear friend of mine, and she complained that I have gone from writing once a week to writing once a month. I said no, and besides, if that was the case, you would only see the signs mythology posts back to back. I guess deep down I don’t want to prove my friends wrong, so here’s Sagittarius, almost directly after Scorpio.

Ah, Sagittarius… Powerful centaurs, bows and arrows, raw power. This is what comes directly to mind, right? Think again, and to make you feel better, I was in the same boat too. Truth be told, Sagittarius has complex origins, matching only those of Virgo. If someone had asked me on the street, I would have spontaneously replied “the centaur Chiron”. Then I realized that there already is a planet named Chiron, and there’s also the constellation of the Centaur. So, what the hell is going on? I’ll present you with all three possible explanations.

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