Authorities confirmed Peter Plogojowitz as a vampire
Peter Plogojowitz is perhaps one of the most famous vampires in history – famous in particular because the case was witnessed and documented by an official of the Austrian administration, and later reported by a Viennese newspaper – the Wienerisches Diariu.
The case involved Peter Plogojowitz was a peasant from Serbia (a country in Centra/ /Southeastern Europe) who lived in the early part of the 1700s in a village named Kisilova. In 1725, with little fanfare, Plogojowitz died.
Within a week fter Plogojowitz died, a mysterious illness hit the village, and 9 villagers died in a bizarre 24 hour illness that struck with no warning. Prior to their deaths, many of the villagers told those surrounding their deathbeds that Plogojowitz had visited them and tried to strangle them. Sightings of Peter Plogojowitz were further substantiated by his wife who claimed that he had come back to their house asking for his shoes.
Fear swept through the village, as the sightings of Plogojowitz led many to believe that he had become a vampire. In order to determine if this suspicion was true, they villagers decided to exhume Plogojowitz’ body to see if he had signs of vampirism. The villagers however did not go in the dead of night and dig up the body in blind hysteria, rather they actually demanded that an official from the Austrian administration and a local clergyman be present to oversee the exhumation.
The grave was dug up, and the body witnessed by everyone present appeared to show signs of being a vampire – Plogojowitz’ body was not decomposed, his hair and fingernails appeared to have continued growing, he had fresh blood near his mouth, and he had a healthy complexion. The authority present at the exhumation – Imperial Provisor Frombal in a statement described what he saw (translation): “I went to the village of Kisilova, taking along the Gradisk pope, and viewed the body of Peter Plogojowitz, just exhumed, finding, in accordance with thorough truthfulness, that first of all I did not detect the slightest odor that is otherwise characteristic of the dead, and the body, except for the nose, which was somewhat fallen away, was completely fresh. The hair and beard – even the nails, of which the old ones had fallen away – had grown on him; the old skin, which was somewhat whitish, had peeled away, and a new fresh one had emerged under it. The face, hands, and feet, and the whole body were so constitued, and they could not have been more complete in his lifetime. Not without astonishment, I saw some fresh blood in his mouth, which, according to the common observation, he had sucked from the people killed by him.”
In fear for their lives, the villagers staked and burned the body.