Graveyard Shift 12 Super Bizarre Eastern European Myths and Legends to Keep You Up at Night  

Jen Lennon
866 votes 275 voters 71k views 12 items Follow Embed

List Rules Vote up the scariest folk tales from Eastern Europe.

Eastern European myths are all about creepy creatures. Everyone knows that we have Romania to thank for vampire myths, but what about the lesser-known cryptids and creatures? As it turns out, there's a wealth of terrifying folklore from Eastern Europe.

Many of these legends are influenced by the unique landscape of Eastern Europe, drawing from the dense forests and barren lands to create richly detailed tales that are invariably terrifying. Read through this list of creepy Eastern European legends and vote up the scariest stories.

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The Strigoi Rise at Night to Drink the Blood of the Living


The Strigoi Rise at Night to D... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 12 Super Bizarre Eastern European Myths and Legends to Keep You Up at Night
Photo: victorvonvlad/via Wikimedia

Come on, you knew all the myths from Romania were going to be pretty hardcore. And the strigoi might just be the most hardcore of all. The myth of the strigoi gave rise to legends about both vampires and werewolves. Like vampires, strigoi are night-dwelling supernatural creatures - but even worse, they can shape-shift into any creature they want. They can also make themselves invisible. And what do they want? Why, blood, of course.

In 2004, one Romanian girl claimed to have been visited by a strigoi that took the form of her dead uncle, so her family dug up his grave, cut his heart out, and burned it. Seems reasonable.

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A Pricolici Is a Giant, Terrifying, Undead Wolf


A Pricolici Is a Giant, Terrif... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 12 Super Bizarre Eastern European Myths and Legends to Keep You Up at Night
Photo: Public Domain/via Wikimedia

This is another great creature from Romania. A pricolici is the soul of a particularly violent man that has come back in the form of a huge, terrifying wolf. Its goal? Mainly to kill people and cause chaos. It's kind of a werewolf/vampire hybrid - and since those are two things you should probably avoid on their own, you should probably be extra wary of the combination.

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Baba Yaga Lives in a Hut That Stands on Chicken Legs


Baba Yaga Lives in a Hut That ... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 12 Super Bizarre Eastern European Myths and Legends to Keep You Up at Night
Photo: Public Domain/via Wikimedia
Baba Yaga is a mainstay of Slavic mythology. She's your classic "old witch in the forest" character, complete with iron teeth and a nose so long it touches the ceiling of her hut, which stands on chicken legs, has a rooster's head on top, and is surrounded by a fence of human bones. 

You'd be forgiven for thinking that, with the iron teeth and bone fence and whatnot, Baba Yaga is just straight evil. Actually, her personality varies from tale to tale. Sometimes she's benevolent, sometimes she's cruel. Baba Yaga is morally and ethically ambiguous, so don't depend on her to save you if you're ever lost in the forest. She might just take away your only means of survival and leave you to die instead.
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The Domovoi Protect Your Home - If You Keep Them Happy


The Domovoi Protect Your Home ... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 12 Super Bizarre Eastern European Myths and Legends to Keep You Up at Night
Photo: via Wikimedia Commons

In Russia, every house is said to have a domovoi. These small, hairy creatures are rarely seen, but trust - they're there, usually living behind your stove. And you better act right, or else they might wake you in the night, break things, or even strangle you in your sleep.

See, all domovoi want is a little respect. You leave them treats and say nice things about them, they protect your house. You ignore them, leave your house a mess, or constantly fight with your spouse, they wreck your sh*t. Seems like a fair trade, right?