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NOTES from a Transylvanian Traveller:

This past summer I lived in Budapest [on Raday utca] and travelled to Prague, Vienna and the area bordering Transylvania. These are the folklore tales and European fables that I collected on my weekend wanderings:

NEW in eBook format - FULL 22-story collection on Amazon.

NEW in eBook format – FULL 22-story collection on Amazon.

The ‘Ghost of the Canals’

In Prague a bronze phantom sits at the end of a dock under Karlov Most [Charles Bridge].

‘Who is this lifeless form?’ you ask.

He is the ‘Ghost of the Canals’. . .the welcomed guest of all property owners along the Moldau River who wish to be protected from floods. You see. offering protection to property owners – in exchange for a good time on THIS side of The Portal – is this ghost’s stock and trade.

But… Young women . . . Beware of this dapper gentleman! You will know him by his greenish cast, and his red slippers! Surely he might flirt with you in the coffee shops or cafes of Prague. But, it is the ‘Ghost of the Canals’ who comes back to life!

Legend has it that. . . should you fall victim of this ghost’s charms. . . he will spend the day with you, only to toss you into the canals as the clock strikes midnight!

Why would he carry out such a dastardly deed? Because as your soul leaves your body, he grabs it for his own in order to walk the streets of Prague. . . for yet another day!

The Ghost of the Abandoned Soldier

Long, long ago in the Austrian-Hungarian Empire there lived a soldier loyal to Queen Maria Theresa. And, just as the Queen had this soldier’s allegiance, the soldier believed he had the devotion of one particular village maiden.

But alas, the maiden’s loyalty was in question.

Here is the story of the ‘Ghost of the Abandoned Soldier’.

It seems this particular soldier was sent off to protect the territory of the Habsburg Queen. He left on his stead with assurances of fidelity from his Prague lass. It was the intention of our young soldier to come back a hero, claim the woman as his bride, and raise a family that would be envied by all. But, like so many soldiers, he was away simply too long and another handsome man – a court ambassador – caught the eye of Prague’s unfortunate young lady. It was THIS member of the Queen’s court who partook the joys of the nuptial bed with the lass.

Upon returning home, our soldier became enraged as he realized his dreams of ‘happily ever after’ had been dashed! His betrothed’s disloyalty – and the advances of her suitor – had to be punished. And so the soldier killed them both, using a sword bearing the Queen’s seal.

It was a horrid scene, blood and gore and the like. Witches were called upon to sit in judgment of the soldier. True, he had killed two people very much in love, and true as well, he himself was a victim. What to do to even the scales?

The witches decided to turn the soldier into a ghost, sentenced to wander the streets of Prague in loneliness for an eternity. So, most assuredly, he spends his days now, gazing enviously at the young lovers of Prague.

But, the witches also must have felt a certain bit of justice in the soldier’s deed. Maybe that is why they allow him to come back to life once each century – and for one midnight hour. It is at this moment, every one hundred years that he may kiss the lips of one young visitor to Prague. Will it be this night that he comes to life?

And, if so will it be you, or maybe your sister, or daughter, who kisses the Queen’s soldier. . . this century?

Twenty-Seven Heads, Twenty-Seven Ghosts

Twenty-seven ghosts haunt the Church of St. Nicholas in the aging City of Prague. The year was 1618 and the Thirty Year War between the Catholics and Protestants was just beginning. The Protestants were plotting to usurp the stranglehold of power that the Catholics held over the land of the Habsburg Empire.

Twenty-Seven brave and daring conspirators were bent on leading an insurrection against the papacy, and the mighty Habsburgs. It was a foolhardy decision, as we shall see.

Somewhere among this lot was a loyalist to the Queen who revealed the plot to the throne. And – to make this story quite short – all twenty-seven were rounded up by the Queen’s men and summarily beheaded for their overly ambitious move against the monarch.

Their headless ghosts, angry, crazed and frenetic, can now be seen swirling in all directions through the Church of St. Nicholas each night after midnight by visitors to the historic baroque cathedral.


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Filed under ghost adventures, ghost hunter, ghost stories, ghosts, Ghosts' Experienced

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