Monster Monday: Mullo

We all know about vampires and werewolves, or at least we think we do. The legends and myths that inspired these monsters are sometimes surprisingly different, but no less chilling. In this series of posts, Monster Monday, we’ll investigate the monsters that have informed our modern notions, as well as some lesser known monsters. Today, we talk about the Mullo.

"The Vampire" by R. de Moranie (1864)
“The Vampire” by R. de Moranie (1864)

A mullo is a vampire-like being in Roma (Gypsy) folklore. The word means “one who is dead.” It is a reanimated corpse of a person who died of an unnatural cause or did not have proper burial rites. It has white clothes and hair that reaches down to its feet. Sometimes it has some other pronounced physical deformity.

A mullo normally comes back to harass those who wronged it in life, such as the person who caused its death or relatives who did not give it a proper burial. It attacks its victims and sucks their blood. In some legends it can appear either day or night. Sometimes it is said to be invisible, and in some stories it can change its shape. If a male mullo visits his widow, he can impregnate her. The child with become a half-mullo dhampir.

A mullo can be killed by a dhampir. A suspected mullo can be kept from rising by driving an iron needle through its heart. Sometimes a hawthorn stake is used.


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