Vampires Montenegro

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The Sources:

Olivera Doklestic:
"Vampire's Grave at Mokrine (close to Herceg Novi)"
on: www.balkansgeotourism.travel

Olivera Doklestic
"Izmedju kamena i vode"
Svet Knjige, 2005

The Case:

I am going to stick to the facts, if facts they are.

In the village of Mokrine there is a cemetery next to the church of St.Barbara. It is reported to be full of beautiful gravestones and monuments. But there is one grave that looks like a concrete coffin. Without any name or embellishments. The villagers are unwilling to talk about it and it only ever gets mentioned when they are very drunk. Nevertheless our author seems to have managed to get hold of the tale.

We are told that there was an Inn in Meteriz, at the border. Which was visited by most travellers who came through there. One night there were 3 men from Mokrine. Savo and Nikola, two brothers, and their friend Rade. The weather was bad, so they were reluctant to venture outside. So by the time they went home they all had been drinking way too much. So they tried to make their way home, falling, vomiting.

Rade was in the worst condition and the brothers had to leave him under a tree while they went to seek help. But they too were legless and fell asleep. Next day it turned out that Rade had frozen to death.

Within a year from then Savo also died being hit by lightening. Nikola's son Marko went to America and after 15 years of slaving in a mine came back with some money to spend. So he married a girl called Andja. Then Nikola got killed by a large rock that broke off the mountain. A few days later his mother died. Rumors started that the family was cursed on account of the death of Rade. Then Marko too is killed, being thrown off his horse.

Andja is left with the task of having them buried and decides to put them all in one grave. Then her dead husband starts coming around every night. Things go on for about a year and then Marko appears in a dream and tells Andja that this can not go on and she has to put a large and heavy stone on the grave.

Andja does not like the idea of the stone, but Marko does not come back. Andja - who finds that she is pregnant - tells her story to the priest. She worries about the devil child inside her, and one morning she is found dead.

The Date:

No actual date is given, but the story is said to have taken place during the days that Montenegro was under the rule of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. I reckon that probably means that things are supposed to have taken place during the first World War. Therefore, and for the moment, I will file this as "around 1915".

The Place:

Mokrine, can be found in the South-West of Montenegro, 9 km from Herceg Novi along the road to Trebinje. Please note that there are other places that are also named Mokrine, in various Balkan countries.

Personal Comments:

I know, I know.... This almost certainly is a nicely written piece of fiction. And unless I find it mentioned in other sources, that is what I will consider it to be. Having said that, it could be based on a local story. And apart from that, there are quite a few made up vampire stories that are handed to us as true happenings. It is not for me to decide. I just pass on information and leave it up to you to see what you make of it.

Possible Follow-Up:

You can check out this story on the site of balkansgeotourism.travel. Now I did find a book by Olivera Doklestic with the title "Izmedju kamena i vode". Could the story be in there ? I guess there is only one way to find out.

2014 by Rob Brautigam - NL - Last changed November 2014

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