Iron stakes prevent an ancient vampire rising from Malew Churchyard, Isle of Man, RICK HALE reports
The Isle of Man is an ancient land steeped in old superstition and legends of dark wraiths, fairie folk and even, vampires.
Located on the outskirts of Castletown is Malew Churchyard, a seemingly ordinary graveyard with gravestones dating back centuries.
However, there is one unusual plot that stands out from among the rest.
A peculiar grave cornered by by four iron stakes driven deep into the ground and draped in heavy iron chains. Who, or what, could possibly be buried there?
The Grave Of Matthew Hassal, Vampire
If you speak with the locals concerning the bizarre grave, they will provide you with a response as bizarre as the grave, the man securely buried in the grave is Matthew Hassal.
According to them, Hassal is anything but human. Rather, he is a revenant corpse, more commonly known as a vampire.
Not much is known about Matthew Hassal, or his wife Margaret, who is buried next to him. The two lived a relatively quiet life free of attention.
Nevertheless, all that changed when Matthew inexplicably killed himself. He had given no indication of despair or trouble. He just decided to one day, end it all.
In those days, suicide was considered an unforgivable sin that brought with it the promise of eternal damnation.
In those days, suicides meant a Christian burial was out of the question. However, Hassal, was granted one. And that’s when things got weird.
Hassal rises in death to scare family and friends
While Matthew Hassal was laid out, his family and friends mourning his loss, his corpse suddenly sat up and let out a loud moan.
Everyone in attendance went into a panic. Ancient superstitions quickly took over and everyone concluded there was only one reason his corpse let out a moan. Matthew Hassal, must be a vampire.
Before his burial, a sharpened stake was fashioned from wood and was driven through Hassal’s heart.
To make sure he stayed in his grave, four iron stakes were placed at the four corners of the grave with heavy iron chains draped over them.
Anyone familiar with the folklore of the British Isles, knows that iron can stop any supernatural being dead in their tracks. Including vampires.
When the burial of the damned creature was complete, Hassal’s loved ones departed the graveyard believing the vampire would trouble them no more.
They were convinced the monster was securely in his grave until the end of time. Of course, they were dead wrong.
Townsfolk protrected from the vampire
According to legend, the iron stakes and chains were removed and the grotesque spectre of Matthew Hassal was free to once again walk the Earth.
It was feared he would seek vengeance on those who tormented his body as it decayed in the ground.
When the townspeople discovered the hideous mistake, they drove another stake through Hassal’s heart.
After reburying him, they placed the iron stakes and chains in their rightful place.
They saw to it that the wretched revenant of Matthew Hassal would never trouble the living again.
This story had the makings of a late night horror film. The only thing missing is the popcorn.
But, the people of Castletown, Isle of Man believe this nightmarish tale.
Castletown may be a thoroughly modern city, but old superstitions don’t die quite so easily.
And the grave of Matthew Hassal, vampire stands as an eternally silent reminder of this fact.