§ Those that died as a result of presumed vampire attacks along with those believed to be “living vampires” were suspected of coming back from beyond the grave so they would benefit of special burial rituals:
– abiding by all the Christian burial customs [it was believed that for 40 days the soul of the departed would remain bound by the family members and the place it once lived in]
– destroy the vampire that caused the death
– all the windows should be open while the body was in the house so that the spirit can freely leave
– keeping certain animals at bay [black cats, ravens etc.]
– keeping the corpse out of the way of shadows and direct hit of moonlight
– covering all mirrors and water surfaces from the household [it was believed that a spirit can remain trapped in it`s own reflexion]
– shutting the eyes of the dead as soon as possible after the death occurred
– putting silver coins on the eyes and/or filling the mouth with garlic
– mutilating the body by piercing it through the heart with a wooden stake
– removing the heart from the body and burying the corpse without it
– putting a crucifix or a book of prayers besides the corpse in the coffin
– [in some regions of Western Europe] positioning the body as follows: hands and legs tied with rope, forcefully shutting the mouth [stuffer with garlic] and securing the head so that it won`t open, wrapping in rugs and nets
– beheading the corpse and placing the head between the legs or in a separate grave
– the body would be burn to ashes
§ After the religious ceremony was over, special arrangements were made at the grave site.
– certain items may be placed on the grave [candles, knives, daggers, wooden stakes] so that if the corpse would try to get out it would encounter obstacles and hurt itself
– an altar was made near the cross, containing: holy water, wild roses, garlic and crucifixes.
– on the paths from around the grave the family would scatter rice, pieces of garlic, wild roses and rocks from the bottom of a river.