In Romanian mythology, strigoi (English: striga) are the troubled spirits of the dead rising from the grave. The name strigoi is related to the Romanian verb “a striga”, which in Romanian means “to scream”.
Some strigoi can be living people with certain magical properties. Some of the properties of the strigoi include: the ability to transform into an animal, invisibility, and the propensity to drain the vitality of victims via blood loss. Strigoi are also known as zombie vampires.
A strigoaică (singular feminine form) is a witch. The strigoi viu (living strigoi) is a kind of sorcerer, steals the wealth of farmers, that is to say, wheat and milk. But it can also stop the rain, drop hail and give death to men and cattle. The strigoi mort (dead strigoi) is much more dangerous. Its nature is ambiguous, both human and demonic. He emerges from his grave, returns to his family and behaves as in his lifetime, while weakening his relatives until they die in their turn.
The strigoi can be a living man, born under certain conditions: Be the seventh child of the same sex in a family; Lead a life of sin; Die without being married, by execution for perjury, by suicide, having been cursed by a witch. Also, children born with a caul atop their head will become strigoi to their death.
Strigoi in Romanian and Vampire Mythology have many supernatural and mystical attributes/powers such as: Super Strength, Super Speed, Super Senses, Weather Manipulation, Shapeshifting, Immortality, Invisibility, Immunity to Sunlight, and Spell Casting.
There is a known method used to get rid of a strigoi: Exhume the strigoi. Remove its heart and cut it in two. Drive a nail in its forehead. Place a clove of garlic under its tongue. Smear its body with pig fat killed on St. Ignatius' Day. Turn its body face down so that if the strigoi were ever to wake up it would be headed to the afterlife.
Once upon a time, there was a poor kind woman who gave birth to a beautiful baby daughter. Her child had a caul, which had been prophesied long ago to mean that she would marry the King’s daughter the moment she turned fourteen. But, the King was selfish, greedy and wicked, and did not wish the prophecy to come true if the child came from a poor background. When he heard of the girl born with a caul, he visited the poor woman and persuaded her to allow him to take her daughter to his castle so that she could be raised there.
Is there any way to make a plot twist in a way where it doesn't seem like it came out of nowhere? That's my biggest problem, people always tell me that my plot twists feel weird and unnatural.
There definitely is – foreshadow. Drop subtle but clear hints about what’s coming all throughout the novel, so that when your readers look back it will be clear that those hints indicated your plot twist.
As an example, I’ll use The Shining by Stephen King (one of my favorite books ever). *SPOILER ALERT!*
Danny Torrance, the protagonist, is a five-year-old with telepathic powers. He has a visitor (his parents call it his imaginary friend, but it’s not) named Tony who sometimes shows him things: Tony once showed him where to find a trunk containing his father’s manuscripts; Tony also shows him horrible things happening in the hotel in which his family will be spending the winter (up in the mountains of Colorado, so they’ll be snowed in). After Danny has a semi-catatonic episode, his parents take him for a medical checkup, just to be sure of his health before they’re snowed in for three months.
The pediatrician, of course, speaks to Danny during/after his checkup, and acts somewhat as a psychiatrist; he then speaks to his parents about his diagnosis (which is nothing serious – only stress). His opinion on Tony is that he was created to deal with hard times (moving, and Danny’s parents considering divorce), and Danny no longer needs Tony, because the family is rebounding; however, Tony isn’t leaving easily, hence the nightmares Danny complains of, and the fainting spell he had. Then the pediatrician says to Mr. and Mrs. Torrance something along the lines of “And of course, you know why he’s named Tony and not Michael or Greg”, and during my first time reading, I didn’t understand what he meant. After the plot twist, it clicked.
Also, it is mentioned that Danny was born with a caul over his face, which superstition says signifies a child gifted with the second sight (in other words, the child will be able to see the future). At the time, this – and what it implies – seems like a secondary detail. Again, at the plot twist it is clear that it actually means more.
The plot twist occurs during Tony’s last visit, which takes place during the novel’s climax. During his last powow with Danny, he comes closer, into Danny’s field of vision – Danny has never seen Tony’s face before, so this is a significant event. Tony looks just like Danny, but older – still young, but maybe 11 instead of 5. Then, in the prose, Stephen King writes Danny’s full name, middle name included, which doesn’t happen at any other place in the novel: his full name is Daniel Anthony Torrance, or in other terms, Danny “Tony” Torrance. The conclusion drawn from this is that Tony is actually Danny from the future, and that Danny has both telepathy and second sight.
This plot twist grows roots throughout the book: how Danny never sees Tony’s face, how Danny was born with something said to promise the second sight, the psychiatrist’s comment on Tony’s name. Basically, Stephen King lays everything on the table without giving us the one detail everything stems from – if it was drawn as a chart, all these small details would surround one big box in the middle, and until the plot twist, that big box would be blank. After the plot twist, that box would be filled in with TONY IS AN OLDER VERSION OF DANNY AND DANNY HAS PRECOGNITIVE VISIONS. That’s what you need to do: lay everything out for the reader except the actual plot twist itself.
I hope this was helpful! If you have any more questions, please feel free to ask! - @authors-haven
has just moved to Hemlock Grove along with her father. From the
beginning she feels a strange connection with Roman. At first they think
it is a simple attraction but they discover there is something stronger
between them and they don’t understand why. Along with the series of
attacks and the feelings Roman awakes in her she also has to deal with
her own family secrets. Pairing:Roman Godfrey x OC (Roman Godfrey x Madeleine) Warnings:mild smut, mild swearing, drugs, mentions of blood? Word count: 4,685 Tags: @eringva @frozenhuntress67@frappylou@readsalot73 @livinglike-jimmorrison A/N: Finally, chapter 7 is here! I had a serious block with this chapter and then I wanted to write something about Battlecreek but at the end I decided to write this chapter, now I’ll write my one-shot with Henry lmao! Also, I want to say that as you begin to read you will see that I used some parts of the series and the book buy I changed them a little bit so they can fit in my storyline. Sorry for the waiting, I promise I will try to post the new chapters every friday! Once again, english
is not my first language so I’m sorry if there are some mistakes. If
someone wants to be tagged just send me an ask. Thanks for reading! :)
Reading your post about Jamie's "sight" reminds me of Bree. Did she ever tell her parents she saw and spoke to them in her dreams when they were in Jamaica? I remember her telling Roger about it and she thought it was only a dream. I don't remember if she ever to Jamie or Claire.
No, Brianna never tells them about her dream. Which in retrospect I think is a missed opportunity to develop everyone’s understanding of Brianna’s abilities - which, given the talents that Jem and Mandy develop, provides a stronger justification for why they have those talents in the first place.
Especially since we know that Brianna was born with a caul:
It was Brianna who had been born with a caul.
A “silly hoo,” the Scots called it; a lucky hood. A fortunate portent, a caul offered—they said—protection from drowning in later life. And some children born with a caul were blessed with second sight—though having met one or two of those who saw with the third eye, I took leave to doubt that such a blessing was unmixed.
Whether lucky or not, Brianna had never showed any signs of that strange Celtic “knowing,” and I thought it just as well. I knew enough of my own peculiar form of second sight—the certain knowledge of things to come—not to wish its complications on anyone else.
– Drums of Autumn
I suppose that this detail helps us better understand Brianna’s talent - whatever it may be. Especially because this is the only time Claire mentions it in the entire series.
There was nothing terribly special about the house itself, or at least, not the outer part of it. It was a nice, respectable enough house, with two stories plus a basement, hardwood floors, and a good-sized kitchen. It was mostly clean, but comfortably lived in, and contained a great deal of plants and some interesting wall hangings. It was not very old, even by human standards, and to the knowledge of the owners nothing particularly grisly or historical or even mildly interesting had ever happened there before.
They did not know that their nice respectable modern house had old, old bones, old as the hills. They did not know that the land their home had been built on had a History: not the human sort that got written down and engraved on plaques and discussed very seriously by academics, but the Folk kind of history, a history of hauntings and grudges and legendary deeds, a history which left no mark upon the earth but was known deep-down and never forgotten. They did not know-how could they know?-that long, long before the settlement and construction, before the concrete and asphalt, before roads and cars and shopping malls and neat suburban neighborhoods, there had been a Hill, a gateway from which the Folk came out of their twilight realm to work mischief of one kind or another. The humans did not know, but the land remembered, others remembered, and the memory came up out of the past and rested heavily on the nice respectable house and made it older than it was.
There were things in that house, things that remembered. Sprites nesting in the houseplants, pictsies who made away with knickknacks and spare socks to line their nests, goblins rustling through the patterns in the wallpaper. The ghost of a bard who had wandered through the Hill and never made it all the way out. A house-hob living in the closets and a boggart under a little girl’s bed.
European vampires originate from Eastern Europe, sharing the universal root upir. (Possibly) the first ever recorded vampire was Jure Grando, from Croatia.
Through the 9th and 10th centuries the Eastern Orthodox Church and the western Roman Church were struggling with each other for supremacy. They formally broke in 1054 AD, with the Bulgarians, Russians, and Serbians staying Orthodox, while the Poles, Czechs, and Croatians went Roman. This split caused a big difference in the development of vampire lore - the Roman church believed incorrupt bodies were saints, while the Orthodox church believed they were vampires.
The origin of Slavic vampire myths developed during the 9th century as a result of conflict between pre-Christian paganism and Christianity. Christianity won out with the vampires and other pagan beliefs surviving in folklore.
In Slavic folklore, magicians (witches, warlocks, etc…) or an immoral person, suffering an ‘unnatural’ or untimely death such as suicide, excommunication, improper burial rituals, an animal jumping or a bird flying over the corpse or the empty grave (Serbian folk belief), and even being born with a caul, were said to become vampires. In southern Russia, people who were known to talk to themselves were believed to be at risk of becoming vampires. Slavic vampires were able to appear as butterflies, echoing an earlier belief of the butterfly symbolising a departed soul. Some traditions spoke of “living vampires” or “people with two souls”, a kind of witch capable of leaving its body and engaging in harmful and vampiric activity while sleeping.
In south Slavic folklore, a vampire was believed to pass through several distinct stages in its development.
The first 40 days were considered decisive for the making of a vampire; it started out as an invisible shadow and then gradually gained strength from the blood it had sucked, forming a (typically invisible) jelly-like, boneless mass, and eventually building up a human-like body nearly identical to the one the person had had in life.
This development allowed the creature to ultimately leave its grave and begin a new life as a human.
The vampire, who was usually male, was also sexually active and could have children, either with his widow or a new wife.
These could become vampires themselves, but could also have a special ability to see and kill vampires, allowing them to become vampire hunters.
The same talent was believed to be found in persons born on Saturday.
To kill a vampire, a wooden stake must be thrust through them (the heart). Another method, is to kill it with fire (while it is awake) and by using the Rite of Exorcism, if found in its grave during the day. To protect homes, people placed mashed garlic and wine at their windows and thresholds to keep them from entering.
In Bulgaria from the Middle Ages through to the beginning of the 20th Century, it was a common practice to pin corpses through the heart with an iron stake to prevent their return as a vampire.
Romanian vampires were said to bite their victims over the heart or between the eyes, and sudden deaths could indicate the presence of a vampire. Graves were often opened five or seven years after burial and the corpse checked for vampirism, before being washed and reburied.
A picture of a baby born “en-caul”, which means that the membrane protecting the baby’s body and head has not yet torn. Normally, this membrane breaks as the birth process commences, and that is commonly referred to as “breaking of water”. En-caulbirths are very rare, occuring in fewer than 1 on 80,000 births. It is, however, almost always perfectly harmless.
The Benandanti (which roughly translates to Good Walkers) were active during the 16th and 17th centuries, in Northeastern Italy.
Between 1575 and 1675, in the midst of the Early Modern witch trials, a number of Benandanti were accused of being heretics or witches under the Roman Inquisition, and their beliefs assimilated to Satanism.
The Benandanti, who included both male and females, claimed to travel out of their bodies while asleep to struggle against malevolent witches (streghe) in order to ensure good crops for the season to come.
The Benandanti reported leaving their bodies in the shape of mice, cats, rabbits, or butterflies, but most sources state wolves. The men mostly reported flying into the clouds battling against witches to secure fertility for their community; the women more often reported attending great feasts.
They were seen as having innate powers marked out at birth. Specififcally, it was a widely held belief that those who in later life became benandanti were born with a caul, or amniotic sac wrapped around their heads. In the folklore of Friuli at the time, cauls were imbued with magical properties, being associated with the ability to protect soldiers from harm, to cause an enemy to withdraw, and to help lawyers win their legal cases. In subsequent centuries, a related folkloric tradition found across much of Italy held to the belief that witches had been born with a caul.
From surviving records, it is apparent that members of the Benandanti first learned about its traditions during infancy, usually from their mothers.
Although these were described by the Benandanti as spirit journeys, they believed that these were real occurrences.
On Thursdays between the Ember Days, periods of fasting for the Catholic Church, the Benandanti claimed their spirits would leave their bodies at night in the form of small animals. The spirits of the men would go to the fields to fight evil witches (malandanti). The Benandanti men fought with fennel stalks, while the witches were armed with sorghum stalks (witches’ brooms were made out of sorghum). If the men prevailed, the harvest would be plentiful.
The female Benandanti performed other sacred tasks. When they left their bodies they travelled to a great feast, where they danced, ate and drank with a procession of spirits, animals and faeries, and learned who amongst the villagers would die in the next year. In one account, this feast was presided over by a woman, “the abbess”, who sat in splendour on the edge of a well. Carlo Ginzburg has compared these spirit assemblies with others reported by similar groups elsewhere in Italy and Sicily, which were also presided over by a goddess-figure who taught magic and divination.
The earliest accounts of the benandanti’s journeys, dating from 1575, did not contain any of the elements then associated with the diabolic witches’ sabbath; there was no worshipping of the Devil (a figure who was not even present), no renunciation of Christianity, no trampling of crucifixes and no defilement of sacraments.
Ginzburg noted that whether the benandanti were themselves witches or not was an area of confusion in the earliest records. Whilst they combated the malevolent witches and helped heal those who were believed to have been harmed through witchcraft, they also joined the witches on their nocturnal journeys, and the miller Pietro Rotaro was recorded as referring to them as “benandanti witches”; for this reason the priest Don Bartolomeo Sgabarizza, who recorded Rotaro’s testimony, believed that while the benandanti were witches, they were ‘good’ witches who tried to protect their communities from the bad witches who would harm children. Ginzburg remarked that it was this contradiction in the relationship between the benandanti and the malevolent witches that ultimately heavily influenced their persecution at the hands of the Inquisition.
Leia is pregnant, and Han wants to marry her for reasons she doesn’t understand. (That’s not true, she understands them, she just thinks they’re idiotic.)
I love this one because it really nails the dynamics while being so goddamn funny. You get Han and Leia in all their snarky snarling determinedly-fond glory, with a lot of unhelpful asides from Luke (who has taken up residence in his sister’s office in Her Time of Need.) Plus, you get some EU backstory and one of the best Leia voices I’ve read, one that doesn’t shortchange or soften her.
This is (agonizingly) a work in progress, but in five chapters it’s done a lot of extraordinarily beautiful character work—it’s got to be the best depiction of complicated traumatized touch-starved ex-”easy lay” smarter-than-he-wants-you-to-realize Poe Dameron I’ve read.
Plus, it delves into Academy-trained Poe and what that means and signifies in a way that feels very real and visceral. (Poe as career military isn’t talked about much in fics, so I love how this fleshes that out.)
……….if you’re in the mood for more excellent Poe, I also recommend ready for flight, by kvikindi.
Poe and Rey, being very gentle in the aftermath. (Featuring such immortal lines as “it’s the best rock he’s ever had, he’d fight and kill for this rock.” which in context is tender and endearing because Poe.)
A caul or cowl birth (from Latin: Caput galeatum, literally, “helmeted head”) is a delivery with a piece of membrane that can cover a newborn’s head and face. The “en-caul” birth, not to be confused with the “caul” birth, occurs when the infant is born inside the entire amniotic sac. The sac balloons out at birth, with the amniotic fluid and child remaining inside the unbroken or partially broken membrane. Birth with a caul is rare, occurring in fewer than 1 in 80,000 births. The caul is harmless and is immediately removed by the physician or midwife upon delivery of the child.
There are two types of caul membranes, and there are four ways such cauls can appear. The most common caul type is a piece of the thin, translucent inner lining of the amnion which breaks away and forms tightly against the head during the birthing process. The lesser common (unknown) type of caul tissue is adhered to the face and head by attachment points and is looped behind the ears, making the removal process more complex. In extremely rare cases, the thicker caul encases the infant’s entire body, resembling a cocoon. The rarest caul type is a thick, soft membrane of unknown tissue type, which presumably forms against the infant’s head during gestation.
In medieval times the appearance of a caul on a newborn baby was seen as a sign of good luck. It was considered an omen that the child was destined for greatness. Some Early Modern European traditions linked caul birth to the ability to defend fertility and the harvest against the forces of evil, particularly witches and sorcerers. Cauls were therefore highly prized by sailors. Medieval women often sold these cauls to sailors for large sums of money; a caul was regarded as a valuable talisman. In Romanian folklore, babies born with a caul are said to become vampires upon death.
- A person born with a caul over his face will have the gift of second sight, and be able to see and converse with spirits and ghosts.
- The seventh son of a seventh son will also have increased psychic abilities and be able to converse with spirits.
- A person who never meets their twin will have psychic abilities.
- Never rock an empty rocking chair; you’re inviting ghosts in.
- If you would happen to encounter a ghost or spirit, ask the spirit “In the name of the Lord, what is it that you want?” They have to tell you why they are there.
- Since animals can see ghosts and spirits, removing the inner eyelid from a dog and wearing it like a contact lens will give the wearer this ability as well. For a more humane (and less disgusting) method, simply crouch down behind a dog, and look between its ears to see what it sees.
- If you hear your name being called and no living person is around, do not answer - It’s a spirit with bad intentions.
- However, if you hear your name being called while you’re asleep, it means you slipped too far into unconsciousness and too close to death. The angels were calling you back.
- When someone dies, all mirrors and reflective surfaces must be covered with black cloth so that the person’s spirit does not become trapped in those items.
- The funeral procession must take a different route home from the one they took to the cemetery so that the ghost of the deceased cannot follow them.
thing that is very interesting re: dipper nearly being suffocated in the womb: in certain births, babies are born with a “caul” (basically part of the amniotic sac) encasing their head, which are usually harmless but can cause suffocation if they aren’t removed. people born with cauls have historically been associated with wisdom and even psychic powers.