Alp

Posted April 21, 2017 by Greta in European Mythology, Monsters and Myths, Random, Shadows, Shapeshifter / 0 Comments

An alp is a blood-drinking, cannibalistic demon who is often associated with the incubus. It is said to frighten women in their sleep (though it occasionally attacked children and men). In some cases, it was considered a living being, in others it was the evil spirit of a dead person.

Origin: Germany, Austria

Appearance:

  • Little old man
  • An animal (bird, pig, cat, white stallion, butterfly, or black dog)
  • Wizard

Characteristics:

  • Terrifying
  • In some cultures, the alp was not violent in its midnight seductions of women. In these cases, it seduced the women before drinking their blood from their nipples

Powers:
Shape-shifting
Terrorize with its eyes
Enter the mouth of its victim by becoming mist or a snake, thereby inducing intense suffering
Twist and torture people’s minds in their sleep

Ways a child could become an alp:
Mother commits a sin during pregnancy and does not receive forgiveness
Mother eats something unclean
Mother uses “inappropriate” measures to ease the pain of childbirth

Ways to protect yourself from an alp:
Display a crucifix (or other holy relic)
Sprinkle salt over the doorstep of the house
Put your shoes against your bed with the toes pointed towards the door
(If the alp is the spirit of a dead person) Dig up the body and burn it
(If the alp is occupying a living person) Draw blood from the area just above the victim’s right eye, thus robbing the alp of its powers

Notes:
Hair on the back of the hands could mark a person as an alp (or a vampire, or a werewolf)
Regardless of what the alp looked like, it was said to wear a wide-brimmed soft hat that it used to hide half of its face. Losing the hat would significantly weaken the alp’s powers.

Reference:

The Element Encyclopedia of Vampires by Theresa Cheung


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