The top ten scariest monsters and demons from Celtic myth (PHOTOS)
The monsters of Ireland's ancient past from the Dearg Due to the Questing Beast
The Celtic culture has always feared an array of evil forces. The ancient Celts had hundreds of deities, but as with most cultures, they had their demons as well.
Some of the Celtic “monsters” were originally gods, but were later demonized as pagan creatures when many of the Celts became Christians.
IrishCentral has hunted down the 10 most frightening of these Celtic and Irish demons and monsters.
1. Dearg Due – the Irish vampire
Yes, Dracula himself is an Irish creation (Irishman Bram Stoker created the modern image of the monster in his masterpiece novel), but there’s also a vampire that resides right smack in the middle of Ireland.
Dearg-due, an Irish name meaning “red blood sucker,” is a female demon that seduces men and then drains them of their blood.
According to the Celtic legend, an Irish woman who was known throughout the country for her beauty, fell in love with a local peasant, which was unacceptable to her father.
Dad forced her into an arranged marriage with a rich man who treated her terribly, and eventually she commit suicide.
She was buried near Strongbow’s Tree in Waterford, and one night, she rose from her grave to seek revenge on her father and husband, sucking their blood until they dropped dead.
Now known as Dearg-due, the vampire rises once a year, using her beauty to lure men to their deaths.
Not to worry, though – there is one way to defeat Dearg-due.
To prevent the undead from rising from the grave, simply build a pile of stones over her grave. No, it won’t kill her, but at least you’ll hold her off until next year!
2. The Dullahan – the Irish headless horseman
Another legendary Irish monster is the Dullahan, a name that can be translated to “dark man.”
Often portrayed in contemporary fantasy fiction and video games, this foreteller of death is the Irish version of the headless horseman.
The Dullahan rides a headless black horse with flaming eyes, carrying his head under one arm. When he stops riding, a human dies.
Some versions of this legend say that the Dullahan throws buckets of blood at people he passes, while other say he simply calls out the name of the mortal that will soon die.
As with most evil forces, the Dullahan has a weakness – gold.
The creature is scared of the substance, so any lonely travelers this Halloween night would be wise to have some on him in case they have a run-in with this headless horror!
3. Banshee – the Irish wailing ghost
A famous Irish creature that some say teams up with the Dullahan is the Banshee.
One of the most recognizable Celtic creatures, having made a guest appearance in “Darby O’Gill and the Little People” and all, the Banshee is a female spirit whose wail, if heard outside of a house, foretells the death of one of its inhabitants.
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