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Vampire burial discovered in Poland complete with staked corpse

A vampire burial discovered in Poland earlier this month came complete with a mysterious corpse that had been pierced with a stake. However, contrary to popular movies and myths, the stake had been placed through the corpse's thigh bone, not the heart. There was also a stone strategically placed between the upper and lower jaws.

An old Saxon graveyard lies May 10, 2001 in the walled city of Sighisoara, Romania
Photo by David Greedy/Getty Images

According to a May 28, 2014 report by CNN, Slawomir Gorka, the leader of the dig in a Polish town called town of Kamien Pomorski, cited a few details that indicated this discovery was representative of a "vampire burial." The grave reportedly dates back to the 16th century.

Speaking with, Gorka said the vampire burial included a corpse with missing teeth, a rock fragment in its mouth and a stake. Why was a stake driven through the corpse's leg? The current theory is that the stake through the thigh bone was inserted to prevent the corpse rising from the grave.

As if this month's vampire burial discovery wasn't gruesome enough, four corpses discovered in another Polish town were found with severed heads just last year. The bodies, which were discovered by archaeologists in the town of Gliwice, had their disembodied heads placed between their legs.

Why were the corpses decapitated and buried with their heads between their legs? Kamil Kajkowski, who is an archaeologist with the West-Cassubian Museum in northern Poland's Bytów, suggested, "Perhaps such a placement of the head ensured the dead would not be able to 'reach it' and put it back on his neck."

According to the Foundation for Polish History and Culture, decapitation, covering graves with stones, placed coins or stones in the mouth, and staking a corpse were just a few precautions taken to prevent vampires from rising from the confines of their graves. If that's the case, Poland is a veritable hotbed of vampire burials.

Kajkowski also said that Poland is home to multiple burial cites with graves that may be considered unusual, such as bodies buried face down or covered in stones. That's in addition to the decapitations in Gliwice, and the recent discovery in Kamien Pomorski. When it comes right down to it, there is no evidence that this recently discovered vampire burial really contains a member of the nosferatu, but it has certainly attracted international attention.

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