Was that movement you spied from the corner of your eye just your overactive imagination? Did your bedroom curtains flutter because of the slight breeze outside? Is the thump you keep hearing in the middle of the night just the house settling? Or are there moments when the unseen collides with the tangible to make its presence known, when those who have long since passed on return to their old stomping grounds?
Most creepy urban legends are built around the concept that the dead are never really gone and that monsters lurk in the periphery, that there are things that the eyes are sometimes able to see but that the mind cannot comprehend. Here are ten such legends from around the world. Sleep is overrated.
10Governor Van Noodt And The Lady In Grey
Photo credit: Scott Marsland
Spooky castles aren’t only found in Europe. In Cape Town, South Africa, stands the infamous Castle of Good Hope, the oldest existing colonial building in the country. The castle has a dark history of slavery and torture, making it the inevitable setting for urban legends of all kinds. One of these tales includes the fate of Governor Pieter Gysbert van Noodt. The governor was a cruel man, and among other atrocities, he decided to sentence a group of soldiers to death by hanging in the 1720s. Van Noodt didn’t deem it necessary to show his face at the execution of these soldiers, and during his absence, he was cursed by the last soldier just before the man died.
When the governor’s officers went to inform him that the soldiers had been hanged, they found van Noodt dead in his chair. There was a look of horror on his face. The story goes further to say that the governor roams the corridors of the castle to this day, unable to shake the curse.
Furthermore, there was also a crying female ghost, dubbed the Lady in Grey, that haunted the castle. However, since the skeleton of a female was discovered during excavation, sightings of the Lady have dramatically decreased.