the ghost and the grave robber

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In China, families are paying grave robbers to steal the corpses of females to marry their deceased relative that died before being wed. In the village of Dongbao in Shanxi Province, there have been at least 36 recent cases of grave robbing for this sole purpose. In rural China, it’s widely still believed that it’s bad luck for a man to die without a wife that shall follow him into the afterlife. It’s said to bring a curse on the whole family with the ghost of the lonely relative haunting them for life. Ghost weddings were allegedly common practice in China up until 1949 when they were banned. However, the practice is very well alive in many rural areas, with grave robbers being paid up to $15,000 for the fresh corpse of a young female.

Requested by calicopriest

If you don’t like mummification or mummies or are queasy in general, you might want to sit this one out. Cofagrigus is a ghost who lives in an elaborate coffin, used to lure in grave robbers and “teach them a lesson”–by consuming and mummifying them alive [Spoiler Alert: They won’t be alive for much longer].

Mummification describes the process of preserving a dead body, typically associated with the ancient Egyptians. Particularly because of the gold, Cofagrigus seems to draw most of its inspiration from the Egyptians; and therefore that is the mummification process we will be talking about today.

The earliest Egyptians buried their dead in the sand in the deserts. The dryness and heat of the sand dried out the bodies, in the earliest form of preservation. Later, they got much more elaborate, using chemicals, removing organs, and overall making sure the body stayed as perfectly preserved as possible.

Here’s where the queasy people want to stop reading. The Egyptians began by pulling out the brain through the nose with a long iron hook. Yeah. Cofagrigus’ victims are killed by this step. They then cleaned the interior of the skull with certain drugs that killed bacteria and got rid of any brain-pieces they might have missed.

Next, the cut open the abdomen and removed most organs—kidneys, lungs, and so on. They left the heart in the body: they believed the heart controlled a person’s emotions and actions (they thought it was the brain). The rest of the organs they washed, coated in resin, wrapped in linen, and stored in small canopic jars separate from the coffin.

They then washed the now empty inside of the abdomen with wine (alcohol is good for disinfecting), and stuffed it with herbs and spices including myrrh, cassia, incense, and so on. 

Next, the dried the body by placing it in natron powder—basically just salt—for 30 to 70 days. During this time someone was always standing guard. Once done, the body was sent back to the embalmers, who removed the spices inside and replaced them with salt, sewed up the cuts, and began wrapping.

Mummies were wrapped tightly and meticulously; every individual finger and toe wrapped separately, the arms, legs, and so on in multiple layers. The completed bandaged body was coated in hot resin to seal and “glue” the linen together. Then the mummy was placed in a coffin, given a funeral and sealed away in the appropriate tomb.

Okay, but lets go back to Cofagrigus. It grabs its victims and seals them in its coffin alive before mummifying them, and so it obviously doesn’t go through all of these meticulous steps. It probably doesn’t wrap them, pulling out their organs is questionable (but you can believe what you like). Mostly, I think Cofagrigus just dehydrates its victims bodies in a salt like mixture the Egyptians used. 

What’s more, I think Cofagrigus does this for nutrients. Instead of eating or drinking water, Cofagrigus absorbs the minerals and moisture from its victims for nourishment. Just about the only thing he can’t get from this is a substantial amount of gold. The human body does contain some gold, about 0.2 milligrams, but Cofagrigus probably needs more than that to upkeep his elaborate coffin. Which is why he eats gold nuggets, instead of chicken ones.

Cofagrigus mummifies its victims to get nourishment. Instead of eating or drinking, he absorbs nutrients and moisture from the preserving process, which takes over 30-70 days to complete. He eats gold nuggets to get what he otherwise can’t from a human body.

So its obviously not solely to “teach grave robbers a lesson”. Cofagrigus uses the Egyptian mummification process not to preserve bodies, but to eat. To survive.

lets talk about more otp supernatural prompts bc im in such a halloween mood today

  • “i am a vampire chilling in a coffin underground bc i dont know how else to live my life now that im technically dead and ive seen movies where vampires go on killing sprees so maybe if im 6 feet under with no way out i cant harm someone or becoming a killing machine so yeah this is gonna be my life now and but good thing i brought some books idk how much that will hold me off but ill deal and what the fuck who is digging me up i hear and smell them, oh they are totally grave robbers shit wait pRETEND TO BE DEAD like for real dead, cant be that hard right? wow i think im getting away with it, ha! suckers- waiT NO GIVE ME THAT FUCKING BOOK BACK YOU MOTHERFUCKER THATS ALL I HAVE TO KEEP ME ALIVE IN MY DEAD SOUL GET BACK HERE YOU LITTLE SHIT I WANT MY BOOK OR ILL COMMIT MY FIRST MURDER AND IT WILL BE YOU”
  • “im a ghost that got attached to a human and now i look after them all the time without them actually knowing, and make it seem like they have good luck when really its just me helping, and if they lose stuff i find it for them and put it somewhere its easy for them to see, and at night when they sleep i make sure they are tucked in and if they leave their lights or the tv on after falling alseep ill shut it off for them, and the things i do are small and things they or anyone else will really notice or get suspicious about but this one time they were driving and they weren’t paying attention and they almost got hit by a truck but i swerved the wheel and they got really freaked out bc they know they didn’t do it and all my times of keeping my actions on the DL has gone out the window bc now they are doing all this research, piecing everything together and i think they’re going to find out they have a casper the friendly ghost shit idk how to feel about this”
  • “you’re a witch/warlock from the 18th century that came back from the dead…. bc of me… im a very inexperienced witch/warlock im sorry and honestly i didn’t even think it would work i was just hoping to talk to you in spirit for a minute or two for a research paper in history about the times where you were alive and i thought it could get an easy A bc i desperately needed it to pass but i messed up the spell and you are here in the flesh, very confused and very angry bc now i dont know how to send you back and i have to take care of you and teach you how to live in modern times until i can find a way to fix this and no that is a caR DO NOT BLOW IT UP NO IT IS NOT SATANS CHARRIET OF HELL THAT HAS COME TO TAKE YOU PLS STAY CALM”
  • “im a human who got on the mysterious halloween town bus bc i’ve seen it always come on halloween night across my street since i was little and everytime i wake up the bus sign is gone and im sick and tired of wondering, im seeing what the fuck this is about and wow people have some seriously good costumes on this thing they look real- aND WHAT TEHF CUK ARE WE FLYIGN??????? WHA T TE FUCK IS HAPPENING RN OH MGY OD HLEP ME WAIT WE LANDED AND WHERE ARE WE IS THAT A GIGANTIC PUMPKIN??? HOLY SHIT WHAT IS THIS PLACE IM TERRFIED, THESE ARE ALL NOT COSTIMES OH SHIT I THINK IM TRIPPIN RN FUCK THERES NO WIFI OR SIGNALS HERE I CANT CALL OR TEXT ANYONE TO GET ME, IM SO HELPLESS AND - ..ok this place is actually really cool and these ‘creatures’ are rlly nice and friendly um wow and oh hello back too you stranger u look human- oh you’re asking if i am human?? ha nooo??? ok you are seeing right through me rn im pretty sure either im a shitty liar or you can read minds or something yes im in the wrong place and i snuck on the halloween bus so im lost are you willing to help me oh kind and cute stranger who may or may not be human or read minds?????”